10 Hiking Essentials You Should Carry While Hiking

hiking essentials

Do you like hiking around favorite waterfalls or scaling up challenging peaks? For that, wearing the right equipment and carrying the hiking essentials are very important. Not only wearing the right equipment, but you should also have enough knowledge regarding what you should bring with you and what not.

In this article, you will get complete details about what you should bring with you and what not while hiking.

Your Top 10 Essentials For Hiking

Here, I have listed the 10 most essential hiking items that you should carry:

  1. Trekking Pole.
  2. Pair of good gaiters
  3. Sleigh Bells and Crampon
  4. UV protection.
  5. Navigation.
  6. First Aid
  7. Fire Starter.
  8. Hydration
  9. Nutrition.
  10. Emergency Shelter, Repair Kit and Tools

1. Trekking Pole

Trekking Pole

Trekking poles, in particular, work pretty well in all the three seasons of hiking. When you are trotting along on the trail, it really helps. Make sure that your trekking pole grips the ground a little better and does not sink completely down into the dirt. They work pretty well but where the snow is much mushier, most of the time, you need something with a larger area to keep yourself from sinking into the snow. This is where snow baskets come into play. Trekking poles can be used as a support for many ultralight shelters. Always choose the best trekking pole for your hiking trips.       

2. Pair Of Good Gaiters

Pair Of Good Gaiters

A good pair is made of gore-tex in Cordura. These have been extremely durable. They strap on underneath your boot with a little buckle. You can find a hook which is a strap on your boot or shoelace on your boot. This is made of full velcro which protects your boot.

3. Sleigh Bells

This is absolutely essential for winter hiking. You can put these on over a pair of boots. Technically, they will fit over some trail runners as well. It will help to dig into the snow and help you out in the slippery situations that you will encounter in the winter hiking trips.

Crampton looks fairly similar to the Mike sleigh bells. They are quite a bit beefier. They have a different fastening system on top of the spikes. This helps immensely if you find yourself having to climb something that is a little bit icy or a little bit vertical.

4. UV Protection

Sunscreen is a very important part of every trip even when the weather is cloudy. Sunscreen lotion, lip balm, sun powder, sunglass, are full sleeve clothes are all hiking essentials. You should take all the above things while hiking to protect yourself from the sun.

Weather can change quickly in every journey through the desert. So, it is recommended to use additional insulation layers. A simple and fast dry wash system will feel safe and warm when the temperature drops. You should avoid cotton products. Wear a dry synthetic layer, cover with sweat and soak wet clothes. Wet clothes will cool down your body when you stop hiking.

5. Navigation


The first and foremost essential thing for hiking is navigation, which includes your map and a compass. Using this, you can get to know where are you and the path to your home. If you are lost somewhere in an unknown place, you can use this. Moreover, GPS equipment can be very convenient and useful on the hike. You cannot completely change the map and compass. If you do not know how to use it, you will not do a good job. With this, you can use several devices.

  • You can use a GPS watch with track loaded with your convenience.
  • Use a GPS device where you can load the maps.
  • Use a smartphone. Install the map and navigation app. Also, use an offline maps application when you are in flight mode.
  • Use paper topographic maps
  • Next, take a full printout of the hiking guidebook.
  • Take the compass to navigate with paper.

6. First Aid

First Aid

Before any hike, it is important to remember the three guidelines for safety.

  1. Always bring a first-aid kit. You would surprised at how many people forget this essential item. It is crucial for your safety and you should never leave this item in the home.
  2. Bring a buddy, who never goes hiking alone. Having a friend along will not only make your trip more enjoyable but it will also make your chances of survival significantly higher in an emergency situation.
  3. Make sure you know how to administer first-aid.

What To Carry?

Now, take a look at the following essential items that you will need to carry in your first-aid kit.

  • Antibacterial wipes are a must in the outdoors. They help to clean dirt and germs out of any cuts or bruises. Use antimicrobial ointments to keep the wound from getting infected after it is cleaned.
  • You should always keep three sizes of bandages in your bag. Small butterfly and large butterfly bandages pull the skin together to close up a wound. The third is a standard 1-inch bandage, which can stop minor cuts from bleeding. It protects them from infection.
  • Medical glue or liquid band-aid can seal up small wounds to keep them from bleeding. Aspirin is a lifesaver.
  • Ibuprofen reduces swelling such as a sprained ankle and to reduce pain and fever symptoms.
  • An antihistamine drug reduces allergic reactions such as sneezing, watery eyes, itching, sinus, headaches, and rashes.
  • Sting relief medicine is an antiseptic and pain reliever for bug bites, bee stings, and poison.
  • Sunscreen to keep yourself from getting sunburned.
  • Higher moleskin to prevent blisters from forming on your feet and helps to reduce further irritation of the blister.
  • Sterile gauze pads to stop the bleeding from bigger wounds.
  • Next is fabric bandages, which can secure gauze pads or act as compression for sprained ankles to prevent swelling.      
  • Medical taps to secure gauze pads or any type of bandage requiring adhesive to secure it to the skin. It can also work as a butterfly bandage to pull the skin together.

7. Fire Starter

Fire Starter

This is also one of the essential things for hiking. You can use this for light, warmth, a rescue signal, to cook food etc. So, carry the following:

  • The lighter which comes windproof.
  • The matches which are waterproof.
  • Lighter which is cheap.
  • Firestarter.
  • Magnifying Glass.

You can start a fire with some raw materials as well. But you have to make sure that you should control the fire.

8. Hydration

You need to keep some healthy nutrition while hiking. All your important body activities need water to work properly. It provides comfort when you are hot. But the most essential thing is that you must keep more than sufficient water. Water is more important than food. You can survive 1-2 days without food but you can not survive without water. It gives us the energy to keep going. What you can do is take a water purifier with you and also check the water sources on your path. By chance, if you finished the water you stocked, at that time, it will help you to purifier pond’s water or stream’s water.

Ensure that you carry enough water with you during hiking. If you find a 24-hour water supply, then I recommended you use one gallon for yourself.

9. Nutrition

You should pack foods that come with all the nutritional benefits. You should keep more dry food which does not require cooking. Also, extra energy bars do not affect your health while hiking. You can carry a honey bun, hot chocolate packets, granola, and powdered whole milk. For the morning snacks, you can take a granola bar and for lunch, some crackers with salami and cheese sticks. Make sure that, you should keep enough calorific food to sustain your energy for a day.

If you are planning for a long hiking trip, carry some extra food options.

10. Emergency Shelter, Repair Kit, and Tools

If you have programmed for long hiking, you should keep the shelter in your bag. If you are planning to stay at night in any place, my recommendation is to bring a small and lightweight shelter. You should keep an emergency blanket which is lightweight and affordable. If you are in a really bad place, these will save your life.

Lightweight multi-functional tools and basic equipment will improve every hiking trip. Tenacious Tape is ideal for bedding breakthroughs. You should keep a knife and other tools with you.

This content is completely written for the benefit of the readers, and I hope that every part of it proves beneficial for your knowledge. If you prefer articles like these, you can share your feedback with me or feel free to provide any suggestions you feel important.


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