Hiking is a great way to get active and enjoy the world around you. Given how important technology is to many of our lives, making some time to connect with nature is a relaxing, gratifying experience.
That being said, there are a few pointers you should know before your first time in the field. These must-know hiking tips for beginners will help anyone curious properly prepare for their first venture.
Know Your Limits
Ambition is great, but when it comes to your first hike don’t feel bad starting small. Know your limits. Find a nearby trail that features both a manageable distance and relatively easy-to-maneuver terrain. After your first hike is a success, you can begin going on more and more, eventually building to bigger treks.
While long distances and steep terrain can make for exciting adventures, it’s best to tackle such a task with a bit more experience behind you. That way, you can minimize the chances of injuries or wearing yourself out on the trail. Get a map of the area ahead of time so you know what to expect from the area’s layout and terrain.
Let Someone Know
This tip will be crucial for your first trip and every trip after that. Many people embark on hikes with a partner or group, but some like to travel by themselves. When hiking alone, let someone know where you’re going, when you’ll be there, and what time—and under what circumstances—to call for help.
Set up a specific time at which the individual should call for emergency services if they don’t hear from you. This will come in handy if you ever hurt yourself but have no way to contact help.
This tip is especially helpful for hiking alone. Even if you’re with a few friends, just to be safe, you should still go ahead and let someone know when to call emergency services. Out of all the must-know hiking tips for beginners, this is the most crucial of them all.
Wear Proper Attire
Some people might have the mindset of, “Meh, it’s only one hike—using boots isn’t really that important.” Hiking boots are better than your average shoes for multiple key reasons, all of which will become very uncomfortably apparent once you embark on a trek without them.
In short, you need attire that’s going to keep you comfortable and safe during a hike. Other than hiking boots, pack some hats, gloves, and layers to keep you warm during your travels. Wearing a waterproof jacket with layers of warm, polyester shirts below it can help you combat the elements with success.
Furthermore, you should prepare the layers in way that you can remove some and carry them with ease. That way, if the weather calls for less layers, you can swiftly adjust accordingly without worrying about where you’ll put your jacket and other essential attire.