Backpackers- Tips to Hike like a pro

Hiking, like walking, is a pretty simple and safe activity, but it requires a bit of prep. To hike comfortably and safely, follow these golden rules to hike like a pro from celebrated travel enthusiast- Henry Mbare. And remember, the reward for a hike that includes some hills might be a panoramic view once you reach the top, not to mention that the downhill leg will be a relative breeze.

Pace yourself
Sounds easy, but many waste a lot of energy by starting too fast. Start slow, 1.5-2 Kph (should feel easy), and then settle into a day-long, sustainable pace 3.5 kph for most hikers.

Take Breaks

Have short breaks of 10 minutes max and have regular calorie intake (snack often).

Adjust your pack often

There is no “perfect setting” for an entire trip. Every couple hour or so, make small tweaks to your pack’s harness, hipbelt, shoulder, and stabilizer straps. Alternate the load between your shoulders and hips.

Mix up your hiking stride

On flat, well-maintained trails, using the same muscles in exactly the same way is a recipe for injury. Try taking shorter and longer strides; get up on your toes, and then back on your heels.

Eat well

On long treks you need a steady supply of fuel. Top snack like coated raisins, or peanut butter. Top breakfast: Granola or muesli. Dinner: dehydrated beans

Carry less water

This is a judgment call—you never want to get dehydrated—but savvy hikers try to avoid carrying more water than they absolutely need. In dry terrain, drink at least a liter of water at the source before leaving.

Choose the right socks

Shoes are important, but so are socks. The idea that you need thick, padded socks is one of the biggest myths in backpacking. Get socks that fit.

Use a sleeping mat

Sleep with your feet resting on top of your pack. When your feet are elevated, there’s the added benefit of reducing swelling in your lower extremities

Carry an umbrella

Sounds like a luxury? An umbrella is so valuable to protect against both desert heat and bone-chilling rain.

Also read Wanderlast: Ride and Hike In Suswa

Remember to pack extra clothing, a flashlight and a trail map.


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