If you’re going out on a hike, you don’t want to leave unprepared! Even the smallest things can make a world of difference when it comes to hiking, and we’re here to help.
We rounded up a panel of hiking experts and enthusiasts and summed up their thoughts on the most important factors you need to pay attention to when going out on a hike.
So here are some tips and tricks to help you make the most of your hike.
- Make sure you have the right gear: Depending on the hike you’re going on, you’ll need different gear. Make sure you have plenty of water, a map, and appropriate clothing and hiking boots for the weather.
- Start out early in the day: This will help you avoid crowds and give you time to enjoy the scenery. The best time to get up for a hike is at dawn, when the air is fresh and the light is beautiful.
- Take your time: Don’t try to hurry through your hike. Enjoy the peace and quiet of nature, and take time to smell the flowers!
- Be aware of your surroundings: Especially if you’re hiking alone, it’s important to be aware of your surroundings at all times. Keep an eye out for potential dangers, such as wildlife or slippery rocks.
- Watch your step: This seems like a no-brainer, but it’s easy to get distracted while you’re enjoying the view. Pay attention to where you’re walking, and watch out for roots or other obstacles in your path.
- Be prepared for changes in weather: The weather can change quickly in mountainous areas, so it’s important to be prepared. Bring extra layers of clothing, and be prepared for cold nights even if it’s warm during the day.
- Enjoy the experience: This is probably the most important tip of all! Hiking is supposed to be enjoyable, so make sure you take the time to appreciate the beauty of nature and the peace of being in the great outdoors.
Things You Need in Your Backpack When Going Hiking
We have also rounded up a backpacking checklist of sorts to make sure you don’t forget anything important when packing for your hike!
- Water: You can never have too much water when hiking, especially in hot weather. Make sure you have a water bottle or hydration pack, and fill it up before you head out.
- Food: Bring along snacks or a meal, depending on how long you’ll be hiking. High-energy snacks like nuts or granola bars are good for short hikes, while sandwiches or pasta dishes are better for longer treks.
- Clothing: Layering is key when it comes to clothing. You’ll want a mix of warm and cool weather clothes, as well as rain gear in case of bad weather.
- Maps: A map is essential if you’re hiking in unfamiliar territory. Make sure you know where you’re going before you set out, and bring a map just in case.
- First Aid Kit: You never know when you might need a bandage or some antiseptic cream. A small first aid kit can be a lifesaver on a hike.
- Sunscreen: Don’t forget to pack sunscreen, even if it’s not sunny! The sun can be deceptively strong, and you don’t want to get burned.
- Hat: A hat will protect you from the sun and keep your head warm in cold weather. Choose one that’s comfortable and won’t blow off in the wind.
- Trekking Poles: Trekking poles can be a big help when hiking, especially if you’re going uphill or downhill. They take some of the strain off your legs and help you keep your balance.
- Flashlight: A flashlight is always a good idea, even if you’re hiking during the day. You never know when you might need it, and it’s better to be safe than sorry.
- Camera: Don’t forget to bring a camera so you can capture the memories of your hike!
Top 5 Hiking Destinations in Australia
Now that we’ve gone over what you need to pack for your hike, let’s take a look at some of the best hiking destinations in Australia.
- Bibbulmun Track, Western Australia: This 963-kilometer (599-mile) trail runs from Kalamunda to Albany, and takes hikers through some of the most beautiful scenery in Western Australia.
- Cape to Cape Overland track: This popular hike runs for 135 kilometers (84 miles) from Cape Naturaliste to Cape Leeuwin, and takes in some of the stunning coastline of southwestern Australia
- Grampians Peaks Trail: This 47-kilometer (29-mile) hike takes in the best of the Grampians National Park, including its towering sandstone peaks..
- Hysen Trail: This challenging hike is for experienced hikers only, and runs for 41 kilometers (25 miles) through the Snowy Mountains.
- Larapinta: This iconic 222-kilometer (138-mile) trail in the Northern Territory should be on every hiker’s bucket list.