Wondering what to bring on a short hike? We’ve got the perfect hiking gear list for beginners so you can get out and explore confidently.
What To Bring On A Short Hike
Hiking is a great way to explore your surroundings, get some exercise, and really see what your body is capable of. If you’re just starting out, however, it’s important to ease your way into it and to make sure you have everything you need.
Below we’ve put together a hiking gear list for beginners so that you know what to bring on a short hike. These items will keep you comfortable and safe, so that all you have to concentrate on are the views…
The first item on our hiking gear list is a backpack. We recommend that you choose a hiking backpack that is lightweight and comfortable. A backpack with a bladder for water is even better, so you can easily stay hydrated during your hike. Your hiking backpack should also have pockets so you can store your gear but be able to get to it quickly should you need it.
Another hiking essential to bring is proper footwear. You want to make sure you don’t end up with blister or a rolled ankle so having good hiking boots is a must.
While you’re out on your hike, you want to be able to see what’s in front of you. We suggest having a good pair of polarized sunglasses. They help protect your eyes from harmful UV rays and improve true color. Hiking with sunglasses also protects your eyes from wind, bugs, and dust.
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Another item on our hiking gear list that will keep you comfortable is a good hiking hat. You want something that will keep the sun off of you and at the same time is moisture-wicking so you don’t get sweat in your eyes.
Even on a short hike, you should bring sunblock. Don’t underestimate the power of the sun. We suggest using a sweat-resistant sunscreen that is at least SPF 50.
If you’re hiking in wooded or marshy areas, you want to be wearing insect repellent. You can’t enjoy your surroundings when you’re constantly swatting at annoying mosquitoes or other bugs. Consider an insect repellent that is DEET-free and environmentally-friendly when choosing what to bring on a short hike.
Pro Tip: Check out the Best Hiking Trails In Florida!
Portable Battery Charger
We want you to disconnect and enjoy nature while you’re out hiking, but we still recommend having a portable charger for your phone. If you’re taking a lot of photos or videos on your phone, it may drain your battery and in case of an emergency, you should always be able to make a call. It’s also important to have a charger that is made for the outdoors; dirt proof, drop proof, and water proof.
Note: If you’re planing on flying with this item, it must be in your carry-on bag. It’s not allowed in checked baggage.
If you’re just starting to hike, you may feel more comfortable using hiking poles. They will help you secure your footing and leaning on them when heading downhill will take pressure off of your knees. Your hiking poles should be lightweight, easy to adjust, and easy to store.
Not only is pepper spray smart to have in bear country, it’s also great for personal defense. If you’re heading out on a solo hike, this is an item you definitely want to add to your hiking gear list.
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If you’re just starting to hike, we recommend you stick to popular and well marked trails; this will lower the chances of getting lost. However, if you’re still worried, we recommend taking a compass with you. It should be durable and lightweight so it doesn’t take up room in your backpack.
If you’re planning on doing a sunset hike or a full moon hike, we suggest packing a headlamp. It should be rechargeable, lightweight, have different light settings, and you should be able to tilt the light.
First Aid Kit
Every hiking gear list should include a first aid kit, whether you’re a beginner or not. This type of kit is good for easy and short day hikes because it has 66 hospital grade items that could come in handy if you get scratched by cactus or twist an ankle.
If you are going on a more intensive or longer day hike, however, you may want to consider a more comprehensive kit.
When figuring out what to bring on a short hike, another item to consider is a multi-tool. These things come in handy in all kinds of scenarios. Plus, they’re compact so they won’t take up too much room in your backpack.
Portable Wine Pouch
And maybe the most important item on our hiking gear list… a portable wine pouch. Just kidding!! But seriously, if you want to celebrate at the end of your hike with a little vino, we say go for it. Just make sure you’re also drinking water. 😉
Final Thoughts On What To Bring On A Short Hike
We hope this list has helped you figure out what to bring on a short hike. We know it can be a little daunting when you first start hiking, but having these items should give you the confidence to get out there, knowing you are safe and prepared. Happy hiking!