What you need to Carry for a Day Hike.

Last week I went for a a day hike after being out of the field for almost two years. I did remeber to carry most of the essentials except for something for the rain which i did not need at the end of the day thanks to the weather. If it had rained, it sure would have ruined the fun. I realized that some of the hikers were quite new and had all the wrong gear or did not carry some essentials. I would like to take you through a few must haves when you are setting out for a hike/ a day hike for that matter.

Navigation.
In our case we had two tour guides for the hike and so the maps were not neccessary,however that does not mean you should not have any. Invest in a compass and a map if not at least be aware of the terrain and how to get about. In case you do not have such, stay close to someone who has or to the tour guide. The golden rule is, always be in a group of at least three. This will reduce your chances of getting lost, you will also have a helping hand in case of any emergencies.

Water
Water is a must have for a day hike. You will realize that you drink more often durin the hike, this is a natural body craving to protect you against hydration. You will need more water if you are hiking in dry and sunny weather as compared to cold and humid weather conditions.

Clothing
It is always good to wear light clothing during the hike for ease of movement, however I higly recomend that you take your terrain and enrironment into consideration when choosing your clothing. If the terrain has thorny trees and shrubs, consider wearing protective clothing to safegurd your skin from injuries. Include a vest, jacket, pants, long underwear and gloves in your packing list. Consider warm but light clothing incase it gets cold, wear layered clothing in case it gets hot too.

First Aid Kit.
First aid supplies are essential for any hike. Emmergencies may arise, one can get bruises and a cut during the hike. Having a first aid kit comes in handy. Your Kit should have among others dissinfentats, pain killers, assorted bandages, eye wash and eye bath, sterile gloves, sterile water,  safety pins and a first aid manual.

Sun screen protection
Ensure to pack some suncreen ointment to protect your exposed skin from sun buarns. Sunglasses will come in handy to protect your eyes from the long exposure to strong sunlight. Do not for get to carry some lip palm to keep your lips moisturised, lips ted to get dry with the dehydration. On top of the water to keep your body hydrated, lip palm helps to keeps your lips well moisturised.

Shoes
Choose the right shoes for hiking, different terrains will require you to have different kind of shoe. Your shoe will be determined by where, how and the conditions under which you are hiking. Hikings shoes during cold and wet weather conditions will be diffrent from those in dry weather conditions. You should also ensure that they are the right size, not too big or too fitting otherwise you will be prone to blisters during the hike. Further more heary shoes will make you weary long before you are half way your journey.

Source of light
It is always prudent to carry a source of light like a headlamp or a flash light and extra batteries to go with it. Your hike may take longer than expected till dusk and your flashlight may come in handy. Besides you may have to navigate and explore dark caves during the hike that may require a source of lighting.

Food
Ensure to carry enough and nutrivive snacks for the hike.




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