Hiking Tips and Checklist

For those participants that are new to our events (or even some veterans), here’s a list of some tips and tricks that can help make your experience and enjoyable one.

Hiking Tips

  • A comfortable hiker is a happy hiker.
  • On many trails, there are no places to dispose of garbage.  You will need to pack out everything that you pack in.  Therefore, don’t take anything that is not necessary.
  • Be prepared for the conditions you will be hiking in.  Pay particular attention to the weather and terrain.
  • Look at a map of where you will be hiking prior to getting on the trail.  Know where you will be going.
  • Always let others know where you are hiking and when you expect to return from your hike.
  • It’s better to wear layers of clothes than a single heavy jacket.
  • Good hiking boots provide support to your foot and ankle.  They also have a durable tread designed to grip the surface of the trail.  Avoid wearing flat soled shoes.
  • Keep your feet dry to prevent blisters.
  • Carry enough, but not too much water.  Canteens that hold 1-2 quarts work well for most hikes.
  • Keep your gear in your pack.  Swinging equipment can break and waste energy.
  • Remember, take only pictures and leave only footprints.
  • Know what to do in case of emergency!

Equipment Checklist

Having the proper equipment is essential to a good hike. Most equipment that you need on a hike can either be found around the house or purchased at local department stores.  Although “high end” camping supply stores can be a good source of gear and equipment, they sometimes can charge a significant mark-up, so be sure to comparison shop!

Here is a list of equipment that is required on most hikes (with alternate equipment where applicable)

Typical Equipment

  • Hiking Backpack
  • Wool/cotton blend socks
  • First aid kit
  • Hiking Boots
  • Raingear
  • Canteen
  • Shoestrings
  • Energy snacks (granola)
  • Hat
  • Lunch(if needed)
  • Jacket or sweatshirt
  • Toilet paper/tissue
  • Emergency change

Optional Equipment

  • Map and compass
  • Pencil and notepad
  • Watch
  • Pocket knife
  • Camera
  • Nature books
  • Mosquito repellent
  • Sunscreen
  • Binoculars
  • Sunglasses


Alternate Equipment

  • Bookbag
  • Gym socks (extra in pack)
  • Band-Aids, Soap
  • High quality tennis shoes
  • Large garbage bags
  • Plastic soda bottles
  • Light duty rope
  • Breakfast cereal
  • Bandanna