Hiking is a wonderful way to get out, get active, and enjoy nature firsthand. Unlike other outdoor pursuits, like biking, climbing, or skiing, hiking requires no special skill or ability. If you can walk, you can hike. If, however, you’re planning to hit the trails for an entire day, we recommend bringing along a few necessities to get the most out of the experience.
1. First Aid Kit: As the saying goes: better safe than sorry. Avoid a disaster miles into a hike by bringing along a first aid kit. The American Red Cross recommends first aid kits include all personal medications, a space blanket, tweezers, various bandages, aspirin, and hydrocortisone, among other items. Check out the full list here and visit Pelican.com for the perfect sized case to carry your first aid contents.
2. Food and Water: Hiking is an athletic pursuit and you’ll want to be sure to remain fully hydrated and nourished during your day on the trails. Energy bars make for a nutritious and easy snack to eat on the go.
3. Appropriate clothing: Recommended hiking wear will vary according to season, location, and weather conditions, however, long pants are always advisable to avoid poison ivy and other ground-level irritants. Hiking boots and thick socks are always a wise choice as well. If it’s warm, be sure to wear sunscreen and if it’s cold, bundle up in layers that you can shed or add as the weather and your activity level shift.
4. Whistle: Once again: better safe than sorry. A whistle is a small accessory to bring along that could save your life. Unlike your voice, a whistle doesn’t go hoarse, so why not just throw one around your neck?
5. Map: Bring trail maps along in case you get lost or confused. And anyway, you might discover some awesome sight you wouldn’t have otherwise known about without a trail map. If you rely on an iPod/iPhone/Smart Phone for your maps, bring them in a watertight case , so you don’t get caught in a torrential downpour somewhere in the woods with a dead device.
6. Flashlight: Not planning to stay out past sundown? It’s still not a bad idea to bring a rugged, outdoor flashlight or headlamp —yes, just in case. Plus, what if you stumble upon a cave on your trail map and want to explore? It’s always good to bring along a light source when exploring nature and Pelican ProGear’s lighting solutions are second to none.
7. Reference material: As you hike, don’t forget to stop and smell the roses—literally. Breathe in the natural beauty and observe the world around you. Bring along a bird watching book—or a tablet device with bird watching apps—so you can identify the species you’re seeing. Same goes for plants, insects, or any other aspect of nature you’d like to learn more about. Hiking is an opportunity to get active, as well as to learn—and there are apps for that too.
Now that you’ve gathered your first aid kit, energy bars, and flashlight, the question remains: how will you carry it all? The Pelican ProGear Sport Backpacks are the ideal, lightweight solution for a day on the trails. They are ergonomically designed to minimize strain, while the cushioned back is deeply ventilated for ultimate comfort. And if you do decide to bring along a tablet device, the Sport Elite Tablet Backpack features a watertight, crushproof compartment.
Now that you’re properly equipped, enjoy an active day hiking the trails!