With the warm days of summer fast approaching our thoughts turn to ways to spend time outside. Hiking is a great way to spend time with your family and friends, get outside and enjoy nature.
The definition of hiking is “to walk or march a great distance, especially through rural areas, for pleasure, exercise, military training, or the like.” Basically, any kind of walk that isn’t on a road or sidewalk is a hike. As a beginner hiker, there are several things you can do to make your hiking experience more enjoyable and safer. Here are some tips:
Plan ahead: Before you go hiking, research the trail you want to take and check the weather forecast.
Start small: Choose a hike that is shorter than the distance you can normally walk on a level or paved surface.
Wear proper hiking boots: Make sure you wear comfortable and sturdy hiking boots that fit well and provide good support for your feet and ankles.
Use a daypack: Bring a daypack with you to carry essentials such as water, snacks, sunscreen, insect repellent, first aid kit, map, compass, and other necessary items.
Stay hydrated: Drink plenty of water before, during, and after your hike. A good general recommendation for how much to drink is about a half liter per hour of moderate activity in moderate temperatures.
Protect yourself from the sun: Wear sunscreen with at least SPF 30 and reapply it every two hours or more frequently if you are sweating or swimming. Wear a hat and sunglasses to protect your face and eyes from the sun.
Before you can set out on a hike, you have to find the right trail! There are many resources to help you find trails in your area, particularly for beginner hikers!
https://www.alltrails.com/ is the most popular hike planning app with over 100,000 trails worldwide. You can search hikes based on difficulty, length, elevation gain, and route type. You can also search in ‘map view’ to find hikes close to you! AllTrails provides tips on getting to the trailhead, restroom facilities, and reviews from other hikers.
Lace up those hiking boots and hit the trails!
Learn more about hiking: