How to Get Ready For Hiking
If you love outdoors and nature, then going for hiking could be your one of the best hobbies. However then it could be your first hiking and in that case you will have some concerns as well. Fear factor may force you to postpone your hiking. Fear could be of wild animals, new geography and uncertain weather conditions..
But all these fear factors should not hamper your hiking plans. We have prepared very basic list of steps that any hiker must follow, then even if you are professional or beginner in hiking. Hiking is a termed for the activity of going out in the wilderness where the trails or treks are well maintained or are clearly visible. Hiking is different than trekking. Write in comments to improve this list.
Here please read 10 steps about how to prepare for hiking:
(1) First of all keep yourself physically fit and maintain a good level of stamina. For this you can start doing normal workout or exercise, take on long walks either on street walks or walk in parks. Once you get good on long walks, start carrying a backpack with light weight of 5 kg or 10 kg and go for long walks. All these exercise and long walks with weight will help you.
(2) Once you are physically prepared make a list of like-minded friends who also love hiking. Invite them choose a place and make a plan for hiking. During winters make sure the trails or treks are not packed with snow or ice. For snow packed treks or icy trails you need extra precaution or knowledge of how to navigate through snow and ice. Also if you are going to Triund or Kareri Lake then take note of current weather and temperature.
(3) Once you have decided on the place or region to hike and have made plans. The next step is to inform your family and friends of your plan and place to hike and to inform about the duration as well, like by when they should expect you back.
(4) Next step is to prepare your backpack. Usually a backpack with internal frame is considered good for carrying any kind of weight but for short hikes or day hikes any casual backpack will do the job. For longer days of hiking pick up a backpack with internal frame. For short day hike, keep all essentials like, filled water bottle, first aid kit that includes bandages, tweezers, antiseptic cream or wipes and sun-screen cream.
Usually one needs 1 L of water per person for each hour during hiking. Because our body dehydrates fast, so even if your hiking is limited for few hours, you do not want to take the chance of getting dehydrated. So pack a sufficient amount of water. If you are aware on availability of drinking water on treks then you can ration your water bottle accordingly.
(5) Next is to pick a good hiking boot. A closed and supportive shoe with comfortable socks will do the job. Even if you have no specialized hiking boots then you can choose any good sports or running shoes with thick soles. It is always good to have an extra pair of socks, especially if you are going for long hikes.
(6) Next is wearing clothes as per weather. For summer hikes you can pick half sleeve shirts with sun cap or better have long sleeve shirt to avoid tanning of shoulders. For winter hikes use a layer of comfortable clothes, which you can remove or wear accordingly.
(7) If you are hiking in area where you need to navigate through steep rocky surfaces then you need to carry finger-less gloves. Hiking or walking sticks are good stick is also needed to make balance while climbing and to navigate steep slopes especially if you are carrying a heavy backpack.
(8) Pack a mobile phone also and if the area has no network then put your phone on airplane mode to avoid unnecessary battery discharge. During winter hikes, if you are in no network area then first put your phone in airplane mode and keep it somewhere warmer place like your inner pocket of jacket.
If you have fully charged power bank then no need to worry. Keep a compass in hand and a full area paper or printed map. Also it is good if you can carry a needle and thread role along with small scissor. Don’t forget to pack your camera with charged batteries.
(9) For short hikes you can also carry packed (spill proof) lunch like sandwiches bite size vegetables and some dry fruits, fruits like apples or banana.
(10) And most importantly never forget to carry an extra small bag to keep your garbage or trash that you make. Please do not throw your trash on trails or treks or down the valleys. Help keep Nature Clean and Green. Please avoid playing music on treks as this not only disturb fellow hikers but also scare away wildlife and wild fauna.
We hope that this helps you in how to get ready for hiking.
We Wish You A Safe, Clean and Green Hike.