Packing for a day hike
We love hiking, but not all hikes go to plan. A beautiful sunny hike can turn into a cold, windy and wet ordeal, or a fairly well marked out path can end up with confusing junctions and a wrong turn. You don't want to find yourself caught out or getting lost, so it's wise to prepare beforehand and pack for all eventualities. To ensure you enjoy your hike, we've put together a list of the 10 essential things you should take with you, to make sure you're prepared for anything (except an alien attack; we can't prepare you for that...)
If you've never been hiking before, or you've usually stuck to well-marked paths, make sure you know how to use a compass before you go off into the wilderness as the scenery can disorientating. There are lots of good videos on Youtube; we'd recommend this video by Above and Beyond.
It may also be useful to learn some basic first aid skills, or to at least find out what to do if you need to seek help. I've had emergency life support training, but this didn't cover basic first aid such as managing cuts, broken bones or sprains, so I bought a book by Katherine Wills called 'Outdoor First Aid' and read this several times. It's a fantastic read and she offers creative techniques for managing outdoor scenarios using equipment you would already have on you. There are lots of true-life case studies within the book too, which is always interesting and gives you an idea how things might pan out in real life. Don't be put off though! As long as you are prepared and know your limits, the chances of needing to use first aid are very low.
We use this checklist every time we go hiking, so we don't forget anything. I hope you find it useful. Is there anything else you would pack? Let us know in the comments below!
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