Going for a nice long day hike is an enjoyable activity that will keep you in shape and let you spend some time in the great outdoors. Before you set off on your journey though, you better be prepared. These 7 day hiking tips will help you have a successful and satisfying day hike.
Top 7 Day Hiking Tips You Must Know
Tip #1: Get The Right Shoes
If you’re going on a day hike for a couple hours or more, you’re going to be spending a whole lot of time on your feet. Wearing shoes that don’t fit right or that don’t have proper arch support could turn your afternoon of enjoyment into misery. If you go hiking a lot, don’t settle on $20 shoes, get some high quality hiking shoes that have good arch support and are comfortable. Also – don’t wear fresh new shoes on a long hike, wear them in first around the house or out on some walks.
Tip #2: Dress For The Weather
If you’ve been planning a day hike for awhile, keep tabs on the forecast to get an idea what the weather will be like when you’re out. Forecasts are never 100% accurate, but they are still helpful. Take a look at the forecast the morning before you head out to make sure nothing has changed and dress accordingly. Wearing too many to too little clothes can make your day hike much less fun.
Tip #3: Pack Light
Unless you’re just going for a 30 minute hike, you better bring some stuff along for the trip. You’ll need food, water, and other accessories when you go for a longer hike, but keep it light. Every pound you can eliminate from your bag will give you a higher chance of reaching your goal for the day. But use discretion, keeping an essential out of your pack could put you at risk if something goes wrong.
Tip #4: Hike Consistently
If your goal is mileage or getting to a certain point on a mountain and back in one day, then you’ll want to hike as consistently as possible. Short sprints followed by rest periods will put you behind the person that is just slowly and consistently trekking along. Remember the Tortoise and the Hare?
Tip #5: Wear The Right Clothing
Along with “Dressing for the weather” it’s important to wear the right types of material. Cotton and wool clothing will make you wet and miserable. They don’t do a good job of wicking sweat off your skin, which is vital. Buy some clothing meant for exercising in that will keep the sweat from soaking your clothes and making you uncomfortable.
Tip #6: Wear a Brimmed Hat
Going for a long day hike without a hat is never a good idea, it leaves you wide open to all those UV rays the sun is bombarding you with. And since you’re going to wear a hat, you might as well go all out! Grab a hat with a big brim that goes all the way around, it will help shade your head, neck, and shoulders from the sun.
Tip #7: Use Hiking Poles
Sure, you may think hiking poles are for wimps or that they really don’t do anything, but they really do help a lot if you’re hiking a long distance. Not only do they help to stabilize you on rough terrain, but they also transfer a little weight off your legs (which are doing most the work) and onto your arms. A good pair of [easyazon_link identifier=”B008CK5JHY” locale=”US” tag=”campingeasyazon-20″ popups=”y”]hiking poles[/easyazon_link] will help you hike farther and faster than “being tough” and going without them.
Where Else To Apply These Hiking Tips
There you have it, 7 day hiking tips that will help you have more fun with less discomfort on your next long hike. To learn more about hiking, check out these hiking essentials to make sure you don’t get caught out in the wilderness unprepared.
All these hiking tips apply if you’re going backpacking for more than a day too. If that’s the case, check out this list of backpacking essentials to make sure you have everything you need.