A Prepping Guide Before Your Next Big Hike
Every year, millions of people set out on hikes. While the majority of those will be day hikes, a small percentage end up going much further, spending days, weeks, and even months out in the wild. Longer hiking trips often require special preparation prior to starting off. Typically, any hike of more than a few days will require that you make special plans. The planning that goes into a week long hiking trip is often enough to last you indefinitely, as long as you have resupplies worked out. With that in mind, let’s take a moment to review the basics of what you need to consider and then get into a more detailed prepping guide to prepare you for the hike.
You will want to keep weight down and your pack as reasonably light as possible. Typically, the water you carry will be the heaviest thing and traveling in places with frequent access to fresh water will allow you to treat it on the go instead of carrying it with you. 3 people are a great number for hiking, as it requires only 1 tent, and makes it easier for you all to share the load. While many people consider the weight on their back, consider your shoes as well. It is often thought that every pound of weight on your feet is equivalent to about 5 pounds of weight on your back.
No prepping guide would be complete without a review of the operational gear you will require. This includes trek poles, flashlights, batteries, an emergency phone, protective bags, cooking equipment, water bottles, a tent, a sleeping bag, and a foam or air pad to sleep on. The basics that make spending multiple days in the wild possible, operational gear is the first place you should start looking when assembling what you need. Be aware that while there are many lightweight options out there, the costs will be quite high.
What time of year are you hiking and what will the climate be like? Typically, hikers can get away with a layering technique, where they wear additional layers if it gets cold to help maintain their body temperature. This works up to a point. Be sure you pack clothing according to the weather. Remember, you can never bring enough socks or underwear. You will be thankful you brought them.
A prepping guide is not complete without a careful review of what food you bring. Typically, dehydrated meals are a preferred because they are lightweight and packed full of nutrients. Remember that the amount you eat will have to reflect the calories you are burning. Bring variation, become creative with trail mix, find freeze dried or dried foods that you can enjoy, and include anything with moisture only if it is absolutely necessary. Every additional pound of food you carry will weigh you down.
Luxury items like books, pads to write with, or other devices can help make a hiking trip truly enjoyable and should be included even if they increase the weight.