1. Find a friend to hike with
Not only is it more fun to spend time with a good friend but it’s also safer. Depending on where you plan to hike, having someone with you to rely on if something goes awry is always better than trying to get yourself out of a tight spot (have you seen 127 Hours??)
2. Consider your path
Make sure you check the trail you plan to hike before you hike it. Find out about things like natural views, accessibility and length of the hike based on your experience and abilities. The terrain can also make or break a hike. If it is a short hike but it’s too steep, it can be too challenging.
3. Pack lots of water
You don’t want to run the risk of becoming dehydrated even if it’s just a short hike. Plan for one litre of water per person per hour of hiking.
4. Wear the right clothes
It may seem like an obvious step in preparing for a hike but it can make all the difference in how much you enjoy the experience. Wear supportive, closed footwear and comfortable socks. Don’t try to break in a new pair of shoes on a hike. Wear comfortable clothes in layers that can be removed or added. Check the weather to see if you’ll need sunscreen, rain gear or both.
5. Pack smart
Make sure you have basic first aid supplies and snacks like trail mix or granola bars.