Essential Hiking Gear

Hiking GearLet’s face it, when you’re on a hiking expedition, life is not exactly as it is back home. But you do still have to – at least to some extent – wash, eat, sleep and travel. Your hiking gear can mean a pleasurable trip, or it can mean a miserable one, so going for quality over and above cool trends, cheap prices and your favorite color can make all the difference.

Number one on the list of hiking gear for any enthusiast is a backpack. Without it, you’d be lugging around suitcases, plastic bags and carts and you know that’s impossible. A backpack has to fit everything you want to take with you, it has to be tough, easy to pack and unpack, lightweight for you to carry and offer some protection from the elements. They range from around $50 for a daypack to several hundred dollars for a serious hiking backpack for mountainous country or long trips.

Where you lay your head to sleep is just as important as the kind of boots you wear during the day. In extreme conditions, you want to be sure that you’ll be protected from high or low temperatures, not to mention inquisitive wildlife. A tent and sleeping bag are vital if you intend to be gone for more than a day or two. Beyond that, heavy or light duty depends on the places you visit and the weather while there. Comfort at night can never be underestimated when you spend your days walking countless miles, carrying a load on your back. Tents and sleeping bags make up a vital part of a person’s hiking gear inventory and can be expensive or inexpensive but must always serve the purpose well.

You can pack plenty of trail food for your expedition but at some point, many hikers want the comfort of a hot, cooked meal. Usually, an open fire is the easiest and most enjoyable way to get one but there are times when cooking equipment has to be taken along. There are plenty of camp stoves, some of which use compressed fuel, others that use liquid or alcohol fuel. Again, the kind of cooking equipment required depends on the destination and length of trip. Then there are the utensils, pots, plates, cups and cutlery to be considered; all very important hiking gear if you want to eat well.

When you’re unsure of the quality of water that will be available on your trip, you should do a good deal of research because you may need to take along full water containers at best, or water purification equipment at its most serious. Whether you take your five favorite books to read or just the barest essentials, your hiking gear must include adequate considerations for water.

Additionally, you might want to take along navigation equipment, particularly if you are unfamiliar with the region, plus lighting and communication equipment. Now you see that in order to carry all your hiking gear, your backpack should be able to cope with all you need to take so make sure you buy a good, sturdy one that won’t let you down

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