beginner backpacker
If you are a beginner backpacker, try these tips to improve your enjoyment and safety on the trail.

There are several necessities every beginner backpacker will need to ensure a memorable adventure. Even if you are embarking on a day trip, you can never be too safe. In order to create a positive routine, consider adding these items to your inventory when you set out on your next adventure.

Analog Navigation

There are too many horror stories of travelers who lost their way on a trek. Luckily, you don’t have to be one of the statistics. The easiest way to ensure you that you are safe and on track is an extensive knowledge of celestial navigation. Many of us do not have the time to develop this skill, so we rely on technological navigation. The invention of the smartphone has rendered many of us lazy, and we turn to applications to do the dirty work for us. Smartphones do not have an unlimited battery time, though. If you find yourself lost with nothing but breakfast bars and a dead iPhone, good luck! Fortunately, compasses are a cost-effective alternative to your smartphone and it does not need batteries!  There is a variety of selection when it comes to compasses, find the one for your needs and practice.  If you are a beginner backpacker, consider taking a navigation course, many outfitters provide free or low cost classes.

Warmth and Insulation

Nothing beats the accessibility of a thick fleece when you are backpacking through areas with unstable weather patterns. Insulation is essential to any backpacking adventure because you never know what life will throw at you. Depending on the amount of people with you, consider trying tent insulation. Insulation in your tent will provide the luxury of temperature control while you are roughing it on your escapade. Of course, you are more important than your tent. It is important to pack a variety of clothing before you embark on your trip. Doing this will save energy and promote comfort throughout your time on the road.


Arguably the most important aspect of any journey is optimal health. Ingesting the correct amount of nutrients is vital to maintaining health, enhancing energy levels, preventing diseases, and the list goes on and on. There are plenty of cost-effective ways to pack nutritiously. To make sure you get all of the essential amino acids, vitamins, and macro-nutrients, it is recommended that you pack many fruits, nuts, and vegetables. Utilizing mostly vegetarian options will lower the weight of your backpack while increasing the number of nutrients at your disposal.

Fire and Water

From an evolutionary perspective, we are designed to eat cooked foods. Without fire, your taste buds will be displeased. Although this may not be considered a bare essential, this will decrease the number of trials and tribulations (which will hopefully be 0) while on your adventure. You can also utilize the heat to keep you warm at night.  The flame will also divert predators from your area. If you are new to backpacking, starting a fire can be tough.  Build a good fire starting kit and practice before your trip.  In addition to fire, it is important to bring water and a reliable water filtration system. Dehydration will sap your energy and ruin your trip, it should not to be taken lightly. Water can be used in a variety of ways, try using water instead of cooking oil on your trip. This will enhance your energy levels while combating any fatigue from increased levels of saturated fat.

First Aid Kit

When you are looking to buy a first aid kit, make sure it contains the following items:

  • BZK-based antiseptic wipes
  • Antibacterial ointment
  • Assorted adhesive bandages
  • Gauze pads
  • Nonstick sterile pads
  • Blister treatment
  • Ibuprofen
  • Insect-sting relief treatment
  • Antihistamine to treat allergic reactions

No one believes an accident can happen to them until it does. It is important to expect the best but prepare for the worst. Although it may seem trivial, everything on this list can serve as a lifesaver given the scenario. Make sure to pack a well-equipped first aid kit before you begin your journey.  Also consider investing in a small first aid book that can go with the kit, or better yet, as a beginner backpacker consider taking a first aid class from a certified instructor.

Backpacking can change your life, create unforgettable memories, and allow you to experience the world. It is imperative to pack correctly and intentionally. Although it is a pleasure to embark on an unknown adventure, it must be done with proper preparation. The next step is to enjoy your travels!


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