There are many hikes and campers out there, so we wanted to put a list of best-hiking tips together on what they can do to have the best time of their life, with a tent. You can also read many more tips from articles here.
Here they are. Enjoy.
- Test your camping gear at home prior camping. You don’t want to sleep under the stars against your will.
- First timers? Camp close to home. This is your safety net if it hits the fan.
- Going to organized camping? Check reviews first.
- Free camping, i.e. while hiking? Check weather conditions and any blog posts about the location.
- Going for more than 1 day? Get some camping chairs that fold. Comfort before weight, bro.
- Need light? Buy a lantern that produces light and is an insect repellent/destroyer at the same time.
- Insects are around. Some bite. Do you have your kids along? See if you can find a screened tent or extension. Their playground doesn’t have to let them with zillions of bites.
- Plan ahead for food. Will you start a fire? Get your meat/chicken ready before. There is a variety of single usage carry along rotisseries to cook inside.
- Add a pair of tweezers in your med kit. Oh, and do get a med kit.
- Weather can change fast. Removing clothes is easy. What about having to wear more. Have layers that you can easily wear on and off.
- Select your shelter. Especially, if you plan to hike in a specific location and use that as a base. This will be your safe ground. To select your shelter look around
- Setup the tent considering the wind direction.
- Do not setup your tent on the path of what seems to be a small river created after rain. If it rains you will be inside the river stream.
- Do not setup very close to rivers since flood can happen.
- Do not setup in “holes”. Inside canyons for example.
- Always camp like having the feeling of being on high ground.
- To get warm you will need fire (if it is cold). Gather and have lighter dry wood to start the fire, along with hardwood to sustain it. The first will burn up fast.
- Do you know how to start a fire fast? Practice on that before hiking.
- Have some basic tools: A folded military shovel can be really useful for many purposes, along with a Swiss army kinife multi-tool or something like that. You will need some cooking utensils that are light to carry and easy to store and clean.
- Water. Plamn ahead to make sure that you will find sources of drinkable water along your route. Have a filter that either cleans up water by distilling it or a straw-filter (more combat like). There are handheld pump filters, gravity flow filters, squeeze filters, ultraviolet strilizers and drops.
- If you plan to walk and return from the same route in a day or two, find some plastic containers, fill them with water and “hide” them along your route. With a proper GPS you can even mark the spots. In that way you will have a safety net concering water as you walk back and forth. Too much maybe? Maybe, but depends on the conditions, i.e. hiking under very hot weather.
- Have someone to know your route and plan. If you can have a communication device, carry one. In sunny days there are solar chargers to use.
- Buy a local guidebook and a wateproof map.
- To get it a bit more on the extreme side, buy a guide on what you can eat in nature. There is also a British SAS surviving in nature guide. You never know… and it is quite informative and detailed.
- If it is going to rain, don’t do it.
- Have a survival kit with you.
- Learn how to use a compass.
- Have the right bed. It will be inflatable anyway. Make sure you have a good sleeping pad and the proper sleeping bag for the location and weather.
- Can’t stand the noise of nature? Can’t sleep? Have a pair of ear plugs. Don’t worry. Many who mostly live in the cities have that issue. They can’t stand… quietness or birds singing.
- Cold feet? Have a bottle of warm water, wrap it in a plastic bag and stick it in your sleeping bag before getting in there.
- How to sleep best? Exhaust yourself. Yes, that is correct. Walk more, paddle more, pedal more. You will sleep like a baby, guaranteed.
- Place the tent on solid ground with very small inclination. To rest you need to be flat on not inclined ground.
- Stay clean. Try to clean up as best as possible before sleeping. Besides smelling, you will feel more relaxed going under when clean. Baby wipes do miracles.
- If possible carry and use a footprint under your tent. This will provide insulation from wet and cold ground. If you hike for many days and your tent is wet, it will smell badly after day one due to moist.
- Have a tool to monitor barometric pressure. Sudden changes alert for weather changes.
- Diagnose your self before sleeping. Do you feel symptoms of hypothermia? Act before letting go. Body temperature must not fall under 95 degrees.
Comfort while staying
- Use tent rope between 2 branches to hang your wet clothes so they get dry. Better get a paracord bracelet. It is pretty looking and handy.
- Have a sitting area, a cooking area and a “toilet” area. Last one is better not to be close to your tent.
- Have a headlamp. It is very hand while you try to locate things at night time.
If you invest into quality clothes and materials then you will travel with less weight & less items.
- Better to have clothes that you can wear in layers, so to control differences in temperature.
- Use sports clothes (especially for summer time and hot weather in general) that are light, and dry very fast when washed or after you sweat. These can be washed very easy and dry in a speed.
- Have hiking trousers that provide you with comfort while walking and are also fine while you sit down or rest. Depending on the days of hiking & camping, of the terrain and climate you many not need many clothes.
- You will need underwear though. There are ones that are of the sport type and are flexible, long and from fabrics that dry fast. On long walks you don’t want your underwear to shrink and crawl in places they shouldn’t be. Thus you will avoid irritations.
- Have a pair of good sturdy shoes. In nature, slippers are just for beach.
Last but not least… Workout and get fit.
Do not think that “Hey, dude, I will get fit whilst hiking”. No, you wan’t. You will get exhausted and you will damage your body.
Hiking needs preparation, unless you plan to walk for 4 hours and then return to your home.
Start with close to your house walking routes and carry the equipment you will use in the long ones. Test your equipment by first camping at an organized camping for a few days.
Get familiar with that equipment and your plan of living in the nature.
Practice to leave no trace (garbage or such).
Many get charmed with Christopher McCandless but he ended up dead because he wasn’t prepared. Romantic approach of nature is one thing, reality is another.
Do you have your best hiking tips? Send them over and we will add them to this article.
Have fun in nature!