The 7 Essential Hiking Tools List You Need this Fall

a visualized Essential hiking tools list

Hitting the trail during fall is an experience, and quite unlike hiking in the spring or winter. The weather is cool but not cold, and exploring the peaks and trails all day is better without the blistering heat from the summer. Despite that, taking an autumn hike also requires more preparation. Start packing and prepping yourself with these hiking essentials for a successful fall outdoor adventure.

(Where should you go hiking? Project Bold Life has got you covered with a list of great trails!)

1.   Lightweight Waterproof Hiking Boots

One of the things that differ when hiking during fall is the footwear. During summer or late spring, hikers can wear minimal hiking shoes, like trail running shoes and hiking sandals. But with fall hikes, experts recommend having more protection with the shoes hikers should wear.

Trails are wetter, rougher, and colder during autumn, meaning you must have the appropriate footwear to handle what nature brings your way. Lightweight hiking shoes or boots offer better support and protect your feet from the weather and other outdoor elements.

In addition, they provide better foot breathability to ease fatigue. Lightweight, waterproof hiking boots and shoes also offer traction to help you with the trek.

It’s also best to avoid using cotton socks when hiking. Use wool socks, instead. Cotton absorbs moisture and dries slowly, which can lead to foot blisters after your trip outdoors.

2.   Rain Jacket and Synthetic Jacket

Having a good hiking jacket is a must, no matter what hiking trip you go to. Although jackets are at the top of any hiking essentials checklist, investing in lightweight, waterproof, and comfortable ones is necessary when hiking during fall and winter.

Many fall hiking trails experience light rain showers to heavy downpours, especially in the afternoon. Due to that, investing in a breathable and durable rain jacket can help hikers feel comfortable despite trekking under the rain. In addition to keeping the body dry, it provides warmth without the bulky and heavy addition of other jackets.

Synthetic jackets are another hikers’ must-have as they handle fall conditions well. They’re breathable and can still provide insulation even when wet, making them ideal for hiking during chilly and damp days. The only problem is that they add more weight to your entire gear, which could make the hike more challenging.

3.   Head, Neck, and Hand Protection

Keeping yourself warm and comfortable is crucial to finishing a hiking trip during the fall, especially when going up to colder, steep trails. Always pack a beanie hat, lightweight gloves, and neck gaiters. Using these three during your hike will keep your body temperature high and keep your legs, fingers, or ears from frostbite.

In addition, having these gears on hand can help you or a fellow hiker from struggling during your hike when the temperature in the mountains and valleys goes down. They also keep your lips from chapping and your skin from cracking due to the cold and dry air.

Choose a neck gaiter with breathable features and an overall cover. When buying hiking gloves, buy lightweight, firm grip, and cut-resistant ones. They’re more durable and comfortable to use and would not affect your hold on your phone or trekking poles.

4.   Trekking Poles

Although not many people use them, having trekking poles is always a good hiking tool. They act as guides and assist in trekking challenging trails, especially on downward trails or wet and downed foliage-filled pathways.

Walking or trekking poles differ from canes and mountaineering poles for different reasons. They’re more convenient to set up, thicker, and have more features to help support the knees and ankles when walking or hiking.

Many trekking poles use aluminum alloy with plastic or rubber, while newer designs use carbon fiber, which makes them more stable and firmer to grip due to their shock-absorbent quality.

5.   Daypack

Hikers should always invest in a durable, waterproof daypack for all hiking trips. During fall treks, you need more layers to stay dry and warm. Due to that, having a daypack that can pack up to at least 20 liters is best.

A good daypack can keep the rest of your gear and food dry even while hiking through a downpour. They have an integrated cover and are easy to use.

6.   Water Bottle

Hydration is a must when you’re doing any outdoor activity. Staying hydrated helps keep the body’s critical systems in tip-top shape by regulating body temperature and preventing muscle cramps. Depending on the trail you plan to hike and its difficulty, you need a water bottle that holds enough water for the entire trip.

The general rule is that hikers should have 0.5 liters of water per hour for moderate hiking in mild temperatures. When choosing a water bottle or flask for your hike, look for ones that can hold at least 2.5 liters, rubber grip, and functional designs.

7.   Headlamp

The days are becoming shorter during autumn, and it sometimes takes time to finish the hike, even after the sun goes down. Having a headlamp with you is essential to avoid any accidents and injuries from navigating your way down the trail. Getting waterproof and rechargeable ones would be best.

Don’t forget the book that lays out the principles of goal-achievement and attaining a Bold Life!

About the Author

Through timely and thoughtful articles, the book Project Bold Life: The Proven Formula to Take on Challenges and Achieve Happiness and Success, and other media, we deliver engaging content that educates, motivates and inspires you to live a Bold Life.
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