Taking your first hike can seem daunting as a newbie since every outdoor adventure destination will have its own unique challenges and unknowns.
But with the right preparations, you’ll be ready to take advantage of all that the trails have to offer. Here are a few hiking tips for beginner outdoorsman learning the ropes.
Plan It Out First
Don’t just show up to a hiking destination expecting to wing it. Before you go, map out the trail and distance you plan to hike for a better picture of what you can expect. Regardless of your skill level, you should always take the precautionary step of telling someone what your hiking plans are and when you plan to be back.
Don’t show up to a hike that includes ample tall grass and brush in shorts that can expose you to cuts and rashes. Dress according to the weather and the destination to stay comfortable and safe. Be sure to always pack a hat and sunscreen, as well, even on overcast days.
Invest in the Right Gear
Similarly, you’ll want to equip yourself with the right gear to handle long hikes or uneasy terrain. Invest in hiking boots, a walking stick, a portable first aid kit, navigation tools, and a sturdy backpack to help you get through your future hiking adventures.
Bring Water and Food
This one seems like a no-brainer, but even for a short hike, you should bring more water than you think you’ll need and enough food to keep you energized for the day. For longer hikes, pack a hiking-friendly meal with loads of protein, healthy calories, and a healthy form of fat.
Respect the Area
One of the most important hiking tips for a beginner outdoorsman is to respect the surrounding area. Try to follow the “leave no trace” mantra to help maintain precious plant and wildlife—and even help prevent natural disasters like forest fires.