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5 Essentials For a Day Hike

Young female day hiker walks along path of broken rock towards glacial lake surrounded by snowy mountains in Glacier National Park

Photo by Shreya Swaika


Hiking season

Hiking season is upon us, and here at Pathloom, we want to make sure you are prepared to hit the trails with confidence! We have compiled a list of the 5 most essential items you will need for your next day hike. If you are new to hiking and are wondering if you should give it a shot, read our 5 Reasons To Start Hiking This Summer.

Now back to the essentials. Here is a quick and handy list that you should use on any hike you decide to do, whether it is a few hours or all day.

1. Water - Carry at least 1L of water on any day hike. Depending on how long you plan to be out, plan to carry more water, or a water purification system if there is a water source en route.

Purple Sigg brand insulated water bottle with twist off top sits on surface covered with fractured rocks

Photo from Pexels

2. Food and Snacks - Regardless of the length of the trail, always pack emergency long-lasting snacks such as nutrition bars and dry nuts. It is also important to carry some extra food in case you end up hiking longer than expected.

Hiking trail mive with raisins, dried bananas, almonds, and craisins organized into rows

Photo from Pexels

3. First-aid kit - A pre-packaged hiking first-aid kit from any outdoor store or a personally compiled one is a must on any outdoor excursion. At a bare minimum, be sure to include tape, bandages, and wound protection. The size of this kit will vary based on the level of risk being taken.

Teddy bear with fake wounds covered with bandaids and ace bandages

Photo from Pexels

4. Layers - Even if the forecast is sunny and warm, it is important to carry some protection for unforeseen weather changes. At a minimum, you should have a light, breathable waterproof jacket. Supplement this with a fleece or wool layer if you are hiking in colder climates.

Young male hiker with wet red and black raincoat in a dense, moist, forest in the Pacific Northwest

Photo from Pexels

5. Sun Protection - Long exposure to the sun has many lasting effects and many more immediate and uncomfortable consequences. The best way to avoid a nasty burn is to pack a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen.

Keep in mind that these items are only essentials. Based on your preferences and needs you can choose to add more to your backpack. This list should give you an idea of the basic things required for a safe and successful hike, and as long as you have the items mentioned above, you will be prepared for the outdoors.

In the current Covid-19 world that we live in, outdoor activities can seem daunting or confusing at first. Read our thoughts on How to Recreate Safely During the Coronavirus Pandemic.

If you are interested in reading more from us about hiking and backpacking, check out the following articles:

Sign up on our website for exclusive early access to Pathloom, and let us help you plan your next hiking trip! As an early user, you will be granted access to exclusive outdoor guides and information, created solely for you by Pathloom!

Pathloom is a Bay Area-based technology startup on a mission to get more people outdoors, more often by reimagining the way people discover the outdoors.

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