Packing wisely is very important while trekking or hiking. Packing can either make or break your trekking experience. While packing less may make you run out of necessities during the trek, packing more is also not really fruitful as it will increase the weight to be carried while hiking. It is very necessary to consider the weather, terrain, altitude, and environment of the place you will be hiking before packing. Your packing list will also vary according to the type of trekking, number of days trekking and the available facilities. Tea- house treks will require you to carry much less than the camping-treks. This list is created keeping in mind the necessity of an average lodge based trekking and helps you to pack for your first trekking experience.
How to pack for your first trekking Experience
This may be true for most of the travel but especially for trekking to high altitudes. Temperature can change drastically within a course of a day. While walking and all the physical activity may make you sweat during the day, the temperature may fall dramatically during the evenings and nights. The best way to deal with this changing temperature is to layer your clothing to adjust it as you go.
Sun screen and protection
Sun is harsh as you go higher in elevation. Don’t underestimate the mountain sun although you love to tan. Trekking with sunburn is miserable. Be sure to carry a hat and strong sun screen to protect you from sun. Be sure to have a sunglasses with quality lenses and UV protection to protect your eyes from burn and sore.
Backpacks and Bags
Comfort of your Backpack is very important as you will be carrying it as you walk hours on the rough mountain trails. Aim to carry a pack that is able to carry all your essentials and yet not too big to weigh you down. It is always good to carry a rain cover for your bag to protect it from rain and snow. Camera Bag: If you are planning to carry DSLR camera consider carrying a separate camera bag for protecting your device. Carry some dry sack to protect your valuable electronics from rain and water.
Comfort is always get the most importance while packing for your trekking. Depending on the number of days take the clothes required. In longer treks, you need to recycle your clothing by washing or using it inside out. Carrying more will only increase the weight of your bag. It is always good to carry the clothing with the fabric that is weigh light and dries quickly. The clothes you wear can easily get wet due to rain, river or even sweating during treks. The wet clothes are heavier thus carrying a clothes that dries quickly is great. Do not forget to carry a raincoat.
Since the most important part of trekking is walking, shoes plays a vital role determining your trekking experience. Invest in a solid comfortable shoes and make sure that it is broken weeks before you take it for your hiking.
Water shoes and flip-flops: After a long days of walk, you may want to come out of hiking shoes and let your leg breathe. Flip flops or water shoes are great while you rest in your lodge or while crossing streams that you may come across.
Quick drying towels are great as it great to start and end the day by washing your face and legs. The wet wipes are great as you can use it when you don’t get to take bath as much as you want.
Electricity is rare when you are close to nature. Carry a headlamp for easy commuting at night.
Reusable water- bottle
Keeping one’s body hydrated is very vital while trekking and hiking. Resist the urge to buy bottled water to reduce the waste created by plastic bottles in the villages. Instead, carry your own reusable water bottle and fill it with the clean drinking water when available.
Clean drinking water may be very expensive when you walk in the woods and mountains. The best way to hydrate oneself while trekking is to carry your own water purification tablets or drops.
This may not be an absolute necessity while trekking the lodge based treks, but the sleeping bags may be a great asset when you are presented with the hard beds, dirty bed sheets and not so warm blankets. The average trekking lodges of villages may not always meet the western hygiene standards and it is best to be prepared for it.
First Aid Kit
This is the most important thing that you should not miss while packing for trekking. Make sure you carry all the necessity medication for the trekking days along with a first aid Kit. Pack your first aid kit according to the place of visit and the number of trekking days.
Moisturizing creams and lip balm
These are a necessity as your lips and skin may dry up due to dry mountain air. Good Moisturizing creams and lip balm will protect your skin from drying. Your skin and lips may dry and crack to discomfort if you don’t keep them moist.
Hiking stick are great especially for the trekking that requires ascending and descending lots of uphill and downhill. If you don’t want to carry a commercial walking sticks, then keep your eye out for a tree branch or limb that can be carved for the purpose.
Even if your meals are provided to you on a trek, it’s sometimes nice to have a little something to nibble on between stops. It is always great to carry some nice snacks like granola bars and chocolates bars to treat yourself while trekking. These treats will surely help you give that much need extra kick while trekking.
You cannot take risk of getting sick while trekking. Always take an extra care while you eat and carry use a hand sanitizer to keep away the germs which makes you sick.
Toilet papers are the most important thing to carry while trekking. As you go to more remote areas, toilet paper becomes more rare and expensive. It is best to carry enough toilet papers for your travel.
Extra Batteries and Memory Cards
It is best to assume that electricity is rare while you go trekking. The charging point can be very rare, so it is best to get extra batteries for your gadgets. You will get plenty of photographic opportunities, so be sure to carry extra memory card to capture all the beautiful moments while trekking.
Map and Compass/ GPS
Depending on where you are trekking, carry a map or compass. In the well-marked trails, these may not be an absolute necessity, while in some they are as vital to your survival as anything you can bring.
Have we missed anything? What do you include while packing for trekking? Please give your views and share your experience in the comment below. We love to hear from you.