Backpacking Tips from Vince at Walkabout
Are you thinking about getting out on the trail backpacking? Is it your first time and aren't sure where to start? Are you a little more experienceed and looking to get out for the season? Check out these great tips from Vince, our Harrisonburg store manager.
Vince - Harrisonburg Store Manager.
The first most important piece of equipment for people who want to go backpacking is sturdy footwear. The terrain you'll encounter on most backpacking trips will be quite different than the places you walk typically and rocks, roots, and elevation changes and carrying a load on your back will change your sense of balance as well. You will want to be confident in your footsteps so you can look around and enjoy your surroundings to the max!
The second important piece of equipment is a reliable tent or hammock system in order to give you protection from the elements and adverse perhaps unexpected weather conditions. A good night's sleep will have you excited to get up and get hiking on that second day and quality shelter will help ensure that that's the case!
Advice for beginners: Start with a day hike of a short length, then extend it, and then consider an overnight hike that is accessible and has points in between that you could get off if need be for whatever reason. Talk to your local Walkabout and find out if they offer classes, hikes, or any kind of one on one advice to increase the likelihood that your first backpacking trip will be a success and get you pumped for your next one!
Most important tip for someone that is aspiring to backpack: It is worth putting yourself out there and giving it a try! Pick a shorter section mile wise vs a longer one for your first couple of backpacking trips, so that you learn the ins and outs, avoid biting off too much right away and getting frustrated, and end your trip excited to pick your next one and get back out there again!
Another tip is to consider joining a local hiking club. https://appalachiantrail.org/get-involved/volunteer/clubs-partners/
Walkabout is here to help you with gear, tips, tricks and more! We also offer pack shake downs! So stop by your local store and let us get you geared up for an awesome adventure!
Be sure to also check out our BACKPACKING ESSENTIALS LIST.