Things To Carry During Hiking: As explained in Minimizing your Hiking Weight section, there is a certain limit to how much you can and want to carry on your Hiking Trips. The lighter your From your Sking Out (FSO) weight is, the more comfortable your Hiking will be. In this section, we will look at how to determine what to bring and what factors have to be taken into account. We will handle these factors in the correct order of importance:
What to carry during hiking
Depending upon some parameters we can know which the things that we can carry during a hike. Before packing up our backpacks we need to know some facts and figures like the estimated duration of the hike, group size, terrain, weather of the place etc.
Hiking Trip Duration
The first question would be: ‘How long is your trip?’. The simple answer to this question will have a great impact in deciding what to bring:
(A) Your first concern is provisioned and how long you will have to be able to go without replenishing them. Water is the biggest problem. You will need about 3-4 litres a day and if there is no sure way to replenish your water reserves or find and filter water in the outdoors then the weight of the water alone will already add a serious load. Food will add another 1.5-2 pounds per day. In general, it is unrealistic to think that you will be able to go for longer than 8-10 days without being able to replenish your provisions.
(B) If you are going on a Multi-day Hiking Trip and you are not planning to stay in hostels or cabins, you will probably need to bring your own Tent. The rule of thumb is to bring the lightest and most compact Hiking Tent that you can find which will still give you the needed protection. For more information, read our section on Hiking Tents.
(C) In terms of gear and equipment, there will probably be no difference between what you need for a 3-day or a 10-day trip. However, the longer you go Hiking, the harder it will be to predict the weather conditions that you will encounter, forcing you to prepare for the worst. In addition, the longer you go Hiking, the more you will want some added luxuries. Spartan conditions that might be bearable for 3 days might be unbearable after 8 days.
Hiking Weather Conditions
Of course, there is a huge difference in the load that you will need to carry between dry, warm, and sunny conditions as opposed to cold, rainy, and snowy conditions. In making your choices, it is good to get the accurate weather forecast and ask the local authorities for specific details about the areas you are going to visit. Mountainous areas, in particular, can have very varied weather circumstances. For more information about weather conditions, read our section on Hiking Weather Conditions.
Hiking Terrain Conditions
The Terrain Conditions will determine what kind of Hiking Boots you will need and what technical gear you will need to bring. If you plan to go Rock Climbing or Rappelling then you will need to bring a considerable amount of additional pieces of equipment. For more information on what to bring for rock climbing and/or mountaineering, read our Rock Climbing and our Mountaineering websites.
Hiking Terrain Conditions
Besides Hiking, Rock Climbing and/or Mountaineering that you might be doing as part of your intended route, you may also want to do other side activities that require additional pieces of equipment. Some common examples:
Photography – camera, lenses, etc.
Fishing – fishing tackle, baits, etc.
Hunting – rifle, hunting knife, ammo, etc.
Painting/Sketching – canvas, brushes, pencils, etc.
Whatever you plan on doing while Hiking, the basic rule applies: take what you need and try to minimize the weight and volume of your baggage. Try to combine multiple functions in one piece of equipment. In the end, it is, of course, all up to you.