Tips For Your First Backpacking Trip


Backpacking is something that a lot of people have on their to-do lists. The thought of “maybe someday” has been stopping a good percentage of them from doing it now. Before I tell you why and how you should do it for the first time, let’s talk about what exactly is backpacking anyway?

Backpacking is an adventure where you travel or hike with only your rucksack. It blends hiking with backcountry camping. You might ask how is it different from normal hiking. Well, the size of your backpack can be the main thing, you have to carry all of your life’s essentials on your back, in one pack, which is why you should choose your essentials with care.

Backpacking lets you broaden your horizon, it lets you take on the challenge of traveling places without the burden of a lot of luggage.

Tips for your first backpacking trip:

  1. Choose an easy destination: Because you are starting out, you might not know what issues could crop up. Instead of taking a cross-country trip as your first backpacking trip, choose a short overnight hike that is close to your home. So, if something crops up you can easily save the situation. As you start getting comfortable with the prospect of traveling with just a backpack, and a limited supply of things, you can start planning bigger trips. Remember, choose safety and health over everything.
  2. Get essential gear and appropriate clothing: Depending on where you are going, if you don’t already have the essential gear, focus on getting that first. The same applies to clothing as well. You wouldn’t want to be trotting in a skirt on a hike or wear heels for the climb. When starting out, borrow and scrounge the gear to save money, because proper gear can be expensive, and if you decide you don’t want to do it again then it can mean losing quite a bit of money.
  3. Have a food plan: When you don’t have enough space to carry snacks, you need to get creative. Just-add-water meals can be saviours of your trips. Always keep quick cook options with you, they don’t take much space, and also they are easily available in most places. Learn things that you can easily cook, and also pack as many snacks as you can for the hike or travel fuel.
  4. Be prepared: Make a list of all the things you need, and what all you have packed. Prepare yourself for a hike with a fully loaded rucksack. If you have any kind of medical issues, get yourself checked and get a get-go from your doctor. Mentally prepare yourself for the extra weight of the pack you will be carrying.
  5. Help from experience: Lastly, if you have an experienced backpacking friend, then invite them along for your first time. They will have hands-on insight, that no amount of reading can prepare you for. They can guide you, and support you.

Backpacking alone can be scary and tempting. If that is what you want to do, then the first four points should prepare you enough. But tagging a friend along can give you that extra boost, not to mention that it is fun and also safe. You can also go with organized groups, that way you will have professional guidance.

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