To rookies, hiking may look as simple as walking until they hike their first trail. Hiking can be an exhilarating experience where you feel at one with nature or it can be excruciatingly painful.
It’s physically demanding as you walk continuously with little rest and it doesn’t help that you carry a heavy backpack with you the entire time.
Here are 10 mistakes to avoid when hiking:1) Buying your gear from a big box store
Beginners usually fall for this one. Hiking gear should only be bought from outlets that specialize in backpacks and from staff who are knowledgeable and passionate about the gear they offer. You may be put off by the price at times but you have to understand that this gear is designed to make you more comfortable when hiking. Don’t risk getting injured by using cheap gear from the supermarket.
Light Hiking Gear specializes in high-quality, lightweight hiking gear that is made to enhance your hiking experiences. The functionality of our products cannot be matched with that of products sold in the big box retailers.
2) Wearing the wrong clothes
You are going to be walking at a moderate pace for very long hours carrying a heavy load on your back. Expect yourself to sweat. Be sure to wear clothes made of lightweight, breathable materials. Cotton retains moisture, so can be great in hot, humid climates, as it acts as a natural air conditioner; but avoid wearing cotton and denim when the weather turns cold or rainy.
3) Not being smart with your packing
Packing too much or too little is a big mistake when hiking. Packing too little means you left out some essentials. Packing too much means you’re carrying unnecessary weight on your shoulders that is slowing you down and preventing you from enjoying the trip.
4) Wearing new boots on your hike
Few new shoes are comfortable. You need to give some time for your shoes to adjust to your feet. Do not wear new shoes on a hike. Your feet should be as comfortable as they can to prevent blisters, abrasions or injury.
5) Going alone
You can hike by yourself once you’re used to it but definitely don’t risk being by yourself on your first hike. You’re very likely to panic when something unexpected happens.
6) Not bringing a map
You’re walking off-road when hiking so you absolutely require a trail map. Your phone could lose battery but a physical map will always be available to help you out.
7) Leaving without checking the weather
Unexpected weather will ruin your hike in a matter of seconds. Check the weather forecast before you leave for a hike. It will help you pack and dress accordingly.
8) Not bringing snacks
You burn hundreds of calories on a hike. Unless you bring high-energy food to replenish yourself, you’ll find it incredibly difficult to keep going.
9) Not stretching
Stretching is important before any physical activity. You’re setting your body up for disaster if you don’t stretch before you begin a hike.
10) Overestimating your abilities
There are a hundred different types of hiking trails. They range from a simple day hike through the woods to cross-country hikes through deserts, rainforests, mountains and more. Begin with simple, straight forward trails. You don’t want to walk into difficult terrain on your first try.