Nothing beats the feeling of being in the wild with just a handful of essentials. Backpacking is increasingly gaining popularity among adventure seekers and to newbies who are trying out new recreational activities. Whether you’re an avid hiker or you’re just curious to try out adventures in the wild, backpacking is a great way to get fresh air in your hair and a natural experience that will get your energy levels rejuvenated. Backpacking involves being self-sufficient with everything you need while out there in the wild so you can enjoy every moment of it. But you need to have an amazing skill set to keep yourself safe and well regardless of the nature of your trails.
The experience gained from backpacking can either be strenuous or luxurious, all depending on what you know and what’s in your backpack. A lot can be gained from backpacking, ranging from improved physical well-being to emotional and spiritual nourishment. This is an activity for everyone, both young and old. It can also be a great remedy for those struggling to cope with a few aspects of life such as stress and addictions.
As if that’s all, you’re most likely going to meet new faces, explore new horizons, boost your overall confidence, and at the same time, become self-reliant. But then again, you need to have the right attitude and the right tools to ensure a successful backpacking experience. This is why in this article, we’ll be looking at the 7 backpacking essentials we couldn’t travel without.
1. Appropriate Shoes and Clothing
Of course, you can’t do without the right clothing in a backpacking adventure, which is why at this point, you are likely wondering about the type of clothes to pack on your backpacking expedition. Your comfort while hitting the trails matters a lot. Climatic changes are usually unaccounted for and it’s imperative to prepare for the worst. Remember, it’s important to look your best, but then again, this is not the time to make fashion statements. While there are so many backpacking clothes and shoes in fashion, your safety needs to be your first priority. As per his expert reviews, Jim from Gear Signal asserts that the type of gear you pack for your backpacking expedition will have a huge impact on your overall backpacking experience. For the best experience, you’ll want to bring along the best shoes, pants, socks, gloves, and upper body clothing without making your backpack seem like a punishment.
Essentially, investing in ultralight backpacking gear will help to ensure your comfort while making it easy to maneuver to, in, and from your destination’s. Now, when it comes to shoes, for instance, you’ll most of the time, be traversing through rough terrains and this means that it won’t hurt to pack an extra pair of hiking shoes. When creating a checklist for clothing and shoes to bring to your backpacking trip, some essentials you’ll want to consider include:
- Some pairs of underwear – for both gents and ladies
- Sports bras – ladies
- Thick hiking socks – gents and ladies
- Comfy Leggings
- Extra layered clothing
- Swimwear (if and in case you’re going to enjoy the waters)
- Waterproof jackets (for the cold or rainy days)
- Shorts and T-shirts
Hey, it’s backpacking, not boot camp! Even those in boot camps will confess to the importance of having your toiletries handy! But then again, you’ll realize that most toiletries are down to personal preferences yet if you plan on packing light, you may have to do away with some luxuries. Among the things to include in your toiletry checklist may include:
- Toothbrush, floss, and toothpaste
- Wet wipes
- Feminine based hygienic products
- Insect repellents
If your idea is to pack light, then instead of the normal towel, we suggest you pack a travel towel. Travel towels will dry faster in addition to being extra-light.
3. A Wellness Kit
When planning to hit the trails, it’s always important to be prepared for the worst. There are many options of commercially available travel first aid kits containing most of the basic first aid essentials, but you need to consider a few factors. These include existing ailments such as diabetes and allergies. Now, just in case, you’ll need to stock up on outdoor sickness tablets, allergy medication, sanitizers, pain relief meds, diarrhea relief meds, insect repellants, and glucose, to mention a few. Also, you may want to include a few bandages and antibacterial wipes in your catalog.
4. Essential Backpacking Gadgets
Most people are attached to technology while others are not. If you happen to be in the former category, then it’s important to pack a few gadgets when backpacking, which may include your smartphone, camera, mp3 players, and power banks. Additionally, some people may opt to carry their work while backpacking, meaning that it’s important to include your laptop in the packing checklist. Other essential backpacking gadgets may include a handheld pocket fan, an inflatable neck pillow, a LED torch, and a mini travel speaker, just to name a few. When it comes to tech gadgets, it really is a matter of preference and convenience.
This is among the handy things not to miss on your backpacking essentials checklist. There is no telling what you’ll come across in your nature trails. You may need to open a can of preserved fruits, sharpen a few sticks, or tighten a few screws in your collapsible tent. For these and a wide range of other tasks, a multi-tool is a must-have survival item for any backpacker.
6. Sleeping Bag
It is not uncommon for backpackers to be out in the odd hours of the night. For this reason, packing a sleeping bag will help to keep you warm during the night, most especially when you fail to make it to your cabin or accommodation facilities. However, it’s crucial to ensure that your sleeping bag is lightweight and is accompanied with comfortable and warm sleeping pads.
7. A Water Filtration Bottle/Kit
When out there in the wild, there’s a likelihood that your backpacking trail will lead you in desolate locations where it’s hard to find clean drinking water. Having a water filtration bottle or filtration kit will go a long way in providing you with safe and clean drinking water to keep your thirst quenched and energy levels optimal during your adventure. Additionally, it can be difficult to tell what’s in the water fetched from springs and wells, this is why you need to have your water filtration kit on standby at all times.
Amraepowell [CC BY-SA 3.0]
On a parting shot, even after carefully planning your backpacking route and booking your flights on time, having your backpacking essentials is key in ensuring an awesome experience. While it may seem overwhelming to prepare all the things you need to survive out there, the above list will help to provide you with insights on what to pack. Traveling without these things can make your backpacking experience hard, inconvenient, and potentially unsafe, it could feel like a punishment of sorts.