What Are the Basic Hiking Gear Essentials? – What to Know

hiking boots with socks

Heading out for a hike is exciting. However, before you hike, you better suit up, and that means you need to have the right gear. From hiking footwear to outdoor clothes to camping gear, how prepared you are can contribute to the success of your adventure. Here are the basic hiking gear essentials:

Layer Up

Weather conditions fluctuate when you’re in high altitudes, which is why you need to layer up. Even though the weather is warm down the mountains, you never know what type of weather you may encounter when you’re on the way up.

The base layer of your clothing is vital, which is why you need to choose a fabric that can pull moisture away. So, you might want to skip on the cotton fabric for your base. Synthetic fabric is popular because it’s more affordable compared to other types of fabric. Choose a piece of clothing with a “wicking” label on its tag as this means it can wick moisture away from the skin.

For something lighter and softer, you can’t go wrong with merino wool. It can keep you warm and has antibacterial properties. The downside to it is that it doesn’t dry quite as fast compared to synthetic fabric. You can also find pieces of clothing made with bamboo fiber, albeit they’re harder to find, these are super soft and perfect for sensitive skin.

When you have your base layer sorted out, it’s time to choose an insulating layer. Fabrics made from fleece or goose down are ideal. If you still feel cold, carry an extra jacket that you can put on top of your fleece.

The last piece of clothing layer is your shell layer, which is your jacket. Make sure your jacket is made of waterproof and breathable fabric. You can also choose a lighter shell layer for mild weather. There are insulated shells if you’re looking for something heavy-duty.

The Right Pair of Shoes

Choosing a pair of hiking footwear will depend on the type of terrain that you will embark on. If it’s rocky, go for heavier boots with stiff midsoles. For dirt trailers, you can go for trail running shoes. Make sure the shoes are comfortable and breathable. Of course, it should be waterproof as well.

Your Bag

First, you need a small bag where you can keep your essentials and that you can easily access. If you are going hiking overnight or for a few days, make sure the bag is big enough to hold a tent and sleeping gear.

Other accessories

One of the most important accessories that you can get is one for your head. Wool beanies are perfect for the cold weather while wide-brimmed hats will be perfect when it’s sunny and warm outside.

Next, make sure to get a pair of gloves that can keep water out and let sweat escape. Consider getting trekking poles as well to help you balance, especially on uneven terrain. Trekking poles can also help reduce the weight on your hips and knees.


These are some of the basic gear essentials that you should have before you climb that mountain. Remember that wearing the right gear when you’re hiking is important to make the whole experience better.

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