An Introductory Guide for the Beginner Backpacker
Preparing for a backpacking trip can be quite an undertaking. It is essential to ensure that you have everything need to survive life on the trail, while ensuring your pack isn’t too heavy to make it out of the door in the first place. You need to find the right balance between necessity and comfort and be willing to make some sacrifices for the sake of weight. Here are a few key points to consider before heading out into the wilderness.
One of the first things to think about is what the weather conditions for the trail might be. Researching the area and the current weather forecasts are key to planning what type of clothing you might need to stay warm and dry, or cool and comfortable while on the trail. One of the worst feelings is getting home and realizing that all those extra clothes that took up space and weighed you down were completely useless. Even worse, you didn’t have quite what you needed to stay warm , and your trip had to be cut short from lack of planning. Research and proper packing is key here.
Second, water is an absolute essential. Not having access to adequate water supply can make or break your trip. Again, research is key. Look into what water sources might be available in the area where you are headed. It’s especially important to find out if any of the water sources are dried up, or if they are still running freely. Also, plan on how you might filter your water, and always have a backup plan. Small inline or water bottle filters are great for saving space and weight, while larger gravity-fed filters are excellent for filtering large quantities of water to share with the whole camp. Make sure you have a good lightweight solution for transporting water while you are hiking. Having water readily available is important to health on the trail. Click Here to shop our large inventory of Hydration Systems.
Third, packing lightweight, calorie-rich food is an excellent choice to make when it comes to preparing for your trip. We offer a selection of calorie-dense freeze-dried foods that are not only lightweight and compact, but also delicious. Click Here to see our large selection of rations Peanut butter, candy bars, tortillas, fruit leathers, and oatmeal are excellent choices as we ll. These items are quick and easy to prepare and will provide plenty of energy to get you through the miles to come. When it comes to preparing some of these foods, a small pocket stove, a fuel canister, and a pot will set you up nicely for when you are ready to settle in for the night or for when you’re just getting your day started.
Finally, some of the items that you may use in day to day life might be better left behind; think deodorant, for example. You will get stinky, but that is just a part of it, and no one will mind, so feel free to leave it behind and embrace nature. It’s also not a good idea to pack excessive clothing. Too many clothing items will weigh you down unnecessarily.Also, leave heavy items such as coffee mugs, heavy water bottles, and large knives at home. Your back will surely thank you.
When all is said and done, the best teacher for what to bring and what not to bring on the trail is experience. Not everything on your first trip will be perfect; therefore, embrace what you’ve learned. Make a list of what worked and what didn’t work. Talk with others on the trail and ask what they’re doing. Most importantly, enjoy the time you spend out in the wilderness. Breathe in the fresh air and reflect. Happy packing!
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