10 Things You Should Bring On A Hike

Planning a hiking trip is one thing but deciding on the essential items to survive is another story. It is most important to articulate the items in such a way that you can tackle any emergency, come what may. From harsh weather to uncertain casualties – several things have to be factored in while selecting the items. Thus, we have made a list encompassing all the essential things that can serve as a necessary checklist before you venture out into the wilderness. 

  • Navigation – Navigation is readily available on our smartphones, along with maps and compass, and other improved GPS devices. However, you might end up hiking in places with zero connectivity or run out of charge on your phone. Considering such emergencies, one must have a manual back up plan. For such occasions, you should also carry physical maps and a compass. Mountaineers can also bring an altimeter that quickly refers to the elevation by calculating the air pressure location. 

  • Sunscreen and sun protection gears – Sunscreen is a must, whether you have sensitive skin or not. Make sure that you carry a broad spectrum one and with SPF 40 and above. The sunscreen must protect against both UVA and UVB rays responsible for tanning and sunburn. Even during cloudy days, do not forget to layer the sunscreen. Also, apply the sunscreen every 4-5hours depending upon the exposure to sun rays and how much you are sweating it out. Sunscreen must also be used on the exposed body parts and not just the face and neck. Remember, sunscreen is not optional but a necessity. 

Sunglass that you will carry for hiking must be efficient to protect your eyes from the harmful UV rays. The sunglasses’ lens must be made of a trivet or polycarbonate with a suitable coating that can repel water, fogging to scratches. If possible, carry a spare if you end up losing or breaking it. Apart from sunglasses, one must carry a hat or cap and lip balms with sun protection. 

  • Medicine and First Aid – Apart from your prescribed medications, you should carry the essentials for sunburn, small cuts and splinters, and band-aids. Sanitiser is also an essential item for your hiking emergency kit – not only for your hands but also for articles of clothing and other things. Apart from these, you can also carry gloves, tweezers, painkillers, pain-relieving balms, and other anti-inflammatory medicines that can come in handy in times of need. If you are planning to hike in a forest or mountains, insect repellent must find a place inside your bag as well. 

  • Knife and Repair Kit – A multi-tool like knives can be your best friend during the hiking trip. It is gouged to be useful for first aid, food preparations, cutting branches or leaves, repairs, and other indispensable tasks. You can also stuff in the tape, repair tools, and cordage considering the trip’s length and nature. Other useful items can be extra safety pins, nail cutters, and scissors for small emergencies. 

  • Food – For hiking, it is advisable to carry food that requires no cooking and fill in nature. These foods must not be easily perishable so that they remain fresh and edible for a longer duration or sometimes, days. Instant foods like granola bars, dried fruits, and chocolates can be convenient. If you are carrying a stove or have means of the bonfire, dried soups, instant noodles, or instant coffee mixing powders are good options. You can also take with you a couple of diet sodas or energy drinks if you need them. 

  • Hydration – Do not compromise on daily water consumption intake as you may fall sick due to lack of hydration. Hiking is a tenacious activity, and regardless of the weather conditions, you must intake 3-4 liters of water every day. We recommend Midwest Can’s 4.5-gallon portable water jug, which is lightweight but durable, making it perfect for hiking, camping, and outings.

  • Clothes – It is always better to be prepared for the worst, just in case. Extra clothes for the hiking trip must involve the additional pair of socks, undergarments, gloves, and a few articles of clothing change in anticipation of unplanned adventures that you might happen to encounter. Surviving a night of emergency can be a little tricky if you don’t have a change of spare clothes. Warm clothes are a must-have if you are hiking in extreme climates. 

  • Lights – On certain occasions, you will have to hike during the night, and hence, a good flashlight or headlamp is highly advisable. It is better not to rely on your mobile phone’s flashlight because you might run out of charge. Keep extra batteries with you in case you require them for any emergency. There are various bright LED torches available in the market, and these are extremely helpful and weatherproof. Additionally, it would be best to carry low-power night vision headlamps for extremely rugged areas or hilly areas. 

  • Appropriate Footwear – Hiking is an excellent exercise for your legs and your feet, which is why you should be extra cautious in choosing the proper footwear that will give you right ankle support and proper balance. At the same time, you traverse through the rugged and rocky terrain. Do not compromise your comfort and the cushion-built as you may get seriously injured when you wear the wrong pair of shoes for several long duration. Also, make sure that they are waterproof. There are various types of hiking shoes available for different hiking terrain, and therefore, research them before purchasing. 

  • Fire and Shelter – A travel-friendly butane lighter is a good option in colder places where you require a bright bonfire to keep the chill and wild animals at bay. If you are hiking in snow-covered areas where lighting a fire is impossible, carry a small stove for emergency heat. 

Along with fire, one would require a warm shelter. A tent is excellent survival gear in remote and high altitude places to protect you from the wind, sun, and harsh climate. 

A great experience in the hiking trip begins with careful planning, so we made this comprehensive checklist of what necessary items you need to bring along. I hope you all enjoyed this post and before you plan your trip here’s our Ultimate Hiking Guide.

Below are two of our favorite MidWest Can products for hiking:

4.5 Gallon Water