Spending a day hiking in the great outdoors is an experience unlike any other. The only problem is that you may be limited in how far you can go, and which trails you can hike unless you’re able to bring some essential supplies with you – that’s where backpacking comes in. If you’ve never tried backpacking before, you don’t know what you’re missing out on! Keep reading to learn some simple backpacking tips for beginners like to you.
- Choose your destination wisely. If you’re going on a backpacking trip for the first time, you need to make sure the trail you choose is appropriate for your skills. Even if you’re a seasoned hiker, carrying around a backpack is an added challenge, so don’t push too hard the first time.
- Borrow as much gear as you can. When you first start backpacking, you may think you know what to expect but you could be wrong. Before you commit to purchasing a backpack and all of the other necessary gear yourself, see if you can borrow from someone to give it a try without making that financial commitment. You’ll also get to try out different things to see what you like.
- Practice packing your backpack. Before you set out on your trip, you’re going to have to pack your backpack. When it comes to packing, you want to make sure the things you need on the trail are accessible and your fragile items should be protected. Practice packing your pack at home, so you learn how to do it quickly and efficiently.
- Plan your outfit for the trip. In addition to planning the supplies you’ll bring, you should also plan your outfit. If you’re an experienced hiker, you already know the basics of layering but be prepared to expend a little more energy hiking with a backpack. You’ll want to layer your clothes to keep yourself dry but still be able to take off layers if you get too warm.
- Choose your footwear carefully. Having a good pair of hiking boots or shoes is essential for backpacking. Many backpackers prefer over-the-ankle boots for the added ankle support while others prefer lightweight running shoes. Try out a few options to see what feels right for you.
- Prepare yourself for the trip. Once you’ve decided where you are going and what supplies you need to pack, you should do some mental and physical preparation. Physically, you should practice with a few short day hikes to get used to carrying the backpack. Mentally, you should have a plan in mind for the trip as far as what time you’ll set out, when you’ll make camp, and when you’ll take breaks.
You don’t have to become an expert backpacker in a day, but you should take some time to learn the basics to ensure that you are fully prepared for your first trip. By following the tips above you’ll learn how to backpack safely and how to get the most out of each hike. Good luck!