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Packing for a Hike by mcclainmy

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									Packing for a Hike
Thousands of Americans venture yearly into the outdoors to enjoy the beauty and serenity of their local
trails. Frequent hikers regularly enjoy the benefits of invigorating exercise and breath taking views along
their journeys and the intangibles of the hobby have drawn many to its following.

A hiker’s gear is loosely defined as anything that they will need to help them successfully navigate and
survive in the wilderness. Luxurious items may be toted down the trail as well but real gear is labeled
“gear” for the intention of denoting its useful purpose.

Gear, therefore, should be treated as though it is the tool of survival for a hiker; because that is exactly
what it is. Every basic item of gear that is stuffed into a pack has, at its core, the benefit of providing
life’s physical necessities of food, water, and shelter.

But even for those who consider themselves regular or even avid hikers, there are a few things that may
be lacking on their list of hiking gear. Beginners likewise can benefit from the following list of essential
hiking items and should consider including these basic items in their packs the next time they venture
outside.

Getting the Right Pack
The first thing that a hiker will need is a quality pack. A pack may not be seen by some as gear, but what
                                                               else would you call the item holding the rest
                                                               of your gear?

                                                             A quality pack should fit comfortably on the
                                                             individuals back, shoulders, and waist while
                                                             carrying a load. Any spots of the pack that
                                                             cause rubbing during the hike should be
                                                             padded and precautions should be taken by
                                                             the hiker against any superficial injuries that
                                                             may come as a result of the problem areas.

                                                          A hiker will always want to pack an
                                                          abundance of water. But because only one
                                                          quart of water weighs around 2 pounds,
there are many hikers who choose to pack insufficient stores of water on the hike.

A person expending energy, as one will do on a hike, should be consuming three quarts of water a day.
To avoid being overburdened by this weight, a hiker may wish to pack a water filtering device to turn
river or creek water into potable drinking water.
Getting the Right Food Supplies
Along with water, a hiker will need to pack sufficient food supplies. Experienced hikers know that
lightweight, typically dehydrated foods are the best choice for longer hikes as these provide necessary
nutrients without the weight of traditional foods.

Often these dehydrated foods can be expensive to purchase but some have found that by using vacuum
sealing bags they can plan lightweight meals and preserve them for the hike using the vacuum sealing
technology. For this reason, common vacuum sealing bags used in the kitchen can be used as an
extension of a hiker’s gear.

A map of the area being hiked is another essential for any level of experience. Along with the map, a
hiker should carry a compass and a detailed elevation chart or topo map of the route they are hiking.

First aid kits are likewise a necessity on every hiking trip as are waterproof matches and a flashlight.
Emergency signaling tools such as a small mirror or whistle should also be standard equipment on every
hike.

With the above gear accounted for and packed, a hiker can know that they are fully prepared for the
adventures that await them. And that the gear they are brining will help them to successfully navigate
and survive the outdoors.

								
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