Summer is the time when most of us love being outdoors. When outdoors, hiking or camping are two fun activities that make you appreciate nature and are best-suited for summer. You are close to nature; where you fall asleep under the dim moonlight and wake up to the sound of birds chirping. You can go hiking in the mountains and camp out on a flat hilltop, or in the woods by the riverside. But first, you need to take a few precautions.
Once you decide on the location and the day you wish to start off on your hike, you should move on to making a list of things that you should carry along, things that you can do without, and things that should be completely avoided on a hiking-cum-camping trip.
The first and foremost priority must be given to your footwear. Appropriate and comfortable boots are essential to make your hiking trip a success. Depending on the location, you could choose between lightweight, medium, or heavy weight boots. Along with the boots, pack few pairs of hiking socks to avoid blisters.
Choose a good backpack depending on the number of days you plan to stay outdoors. The backpack should contain all essentials including undergarments (take synthetic ones if you are planning to hike and camp during winter, else go for cotton underwear), rain wear (during rainy season), body lotions, and an extra pair of hiking socks. Don't forget to pack in the food, water, and toiletries.
To make your camping adventure a success, pack a good quality tent. When you choose a tent, consider the size and not the color or the style. Choose a tent that has a rain fly. Also carry a tent diaper. This is spread out on the floor underneath the tent to keep the tent dry, in case it rains.
The general equipment that is to be carried during a hike or while camping are water bottles, emergency kit including the first aid kit, torch lights and extra batteries, fire lighter, water purification tablets, and a couple of all-purpose zip lock bags.
If you are planning to cook over a campfire, do not forget to include a knife, spoons, plates, kettle, and a frying pan and a couple of unbreakable mugs. Carry bottle openers, duct tape, and light ropes. A compass and a signal mirror are a must.
Whether you are going hiking or camping, you need to have an idea about the foodstuffs that should be taken along. Plan out each meal. Carry cereals and milk powder for breakfast. Avoid meat as it is bound to get spoiled. Take tinned food that will last long and is light on the stomach. When shopping for food, check out the date of expiry. Carrying extra supply of food is a good idea because you tend to feel hungry while hiking long distances. The fresh air and the cool breeze can surely increase your appetite.
If you are camping in the mountains, do not forget to pack a lightweight blanket and sweaters for the night. If trekking during the day, wear a large brimmed hat to protect your skin from the sun. Never forget to apply sunscreen lotion or cream on the face and limbs. The mountain air and sun could cause blisters. Wearing sunglasses will provide extra protection for your eyes from the sun and dust.
Camping or trekking is fun, provided you are well-equipped. Keep in mind the above tips before you head out and have the time of your life.