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27 Essential Items to Bring With You on Any Hike

Consider this your ultimate checklist for what to pack, from navigation tools to nutrition must-haves.

After sheltering in place for months, most of us are craving fresh air—and a hike is an excellent way to get just that. Not only is it a scenic way to get some cardio, but studies have also found that hiking can lower stress levels. Triple win! Before you plan your trip to one of these gorgeous hiking trails (we found one in every state), make sure to pack these hiking essentials that will ensure you have a fun and safe trip.

What to pack on a hike:

Whether you're going on a short hike or a longer trek, the National Park Service advises anyone hitting the trails to carry what's known as the 10 Essentials. Broken down into multiple categories, the 10 Essentials focus on the following systems:

Navigation: maps or GPS location devices
• Lighting
: lanterns, headlamps, or flashlights
• Sun protection: sunscreen or clothes with UPF protection
• Fire starters: matches or lighters
• Insulation (if applicable): hats, wool socks, or jackets
• First-aid supplies: a kit with bandages, antiseptic wipes and medication
• Repair tools: knives or scissors
• Food: snack bars, granola, or food packs
• Water supplies: filters or disinfecting liquid tablets
• Shelter: tents, tarps or bivy sacks

For the complete list of hiking essentials, continue reading here.

LAST UPDATED

May 5, 2022

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Prevention

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Your healthiest you! Get tips from our experts on natural cures, health, nutrition, recipes, beauty, mind-body, weight loss, and fitness.

MEDIA MENTIONS

My only complaint is that eventually, backflushing won’t be enough. These can clog up after some time and no amount of back flushing will fix its low flow. I went through 2 on the AT. However, it will attach to Smart Water Bottles and most bladders!

Anna Hamrick

MEDIA MENTIONS

Built for backcountry reliability and portability, the Sawyer Squeeze filter is our pick for the best portable water purifier.

Pete Ortiz
Writer

MEDIA MENTIONS

The Sawyer Squeeze was (by far) the most common Pacific Crest Trail water filter this year – for the fifth year in a row. It’s a $39, 3 oz / 85 g hollow fiber filter that rids your drinking water of protozoa and bacteria (and floaties). It can be used with Sawyer bags (included with the filter) or with compatible water bottles (Smartwater is the bottle of choice for many hikers).

Halfway Anywhere
Media Mentions from Halfway Anywhere