Backpacking checklist should be detailed and well thought off. So, that later in hiking we don’t regret of not bringing the items. So, here we present the detailed backpacking checklist for beginners and for everyone else.
Backpacking lists depends on various factors like weather forecast of the destination, altitude of trek, how remote is the location, season of the location, number of days of the trek and your personal preferences. We have divided the category in various below points.
1. Backpacking Gear & Navigation
- Backpack with rain cover
- Backpacking tent
- Sleeping Bag
- Sleeping pad
- Head lamp or flash light with extra batteries
- Map, Compass and GPS (Optional)
- Trekking poles (Optional)
- Tent footprint (Optional)
- Bear spray or pepper spray (Optional)
The Backpack holds utmost value, because it holds all your checklist items in it. Purchase a water proof one or with a rain cover. Approximately, 30 to 50 ltrs for 1 day to 3 days hiking and 50 to 70 ltrs for 3 days to 7 days hiking. Backpacking tent should be of good quality. Sleeping bag with stuff sack and purchase a sleeping bag as per the hiking destination temperature and weather. Sleeping pad is for your comfort. Keep flashlight with extra batteries. Trekking pole is mandatory if trekking is long and strenuous or if it is a mountain trek. Map, Compass and GPS are must for long days trekking or if you are going to very remote location. Otherwise, it is optional item. Tent footprint for extra floor protection.
2. Clothing, Insulation & Sun protection.
- Moisture proof inner garments & clothing
- Quick drying shorts & pants
- Socks, boots & shoes as per terrain
- Jacket, Vests, Pants & Gloves
- Rain wear jacket
- Extra clothing as per weather and your liking
- Sunscreen & Lip balm
Ensure, that you dress according to the weather condition. Before packing the clothing items, check the weather condition. Keep some quick dry garments in your backpack. Keep normal running or jogging shoes if trek is simple. If it is advance trek consider carrying specialized trek shoes or boots.
UV rays are more on mountain. So, carry sun and UV protection like Sunscreen, Lip balm, sun glasses and hat.
3. Kitchen, Nutrition and Hydration
- Kits for stove, backpacking stove, cook set and fuel
- Energy bar
- Pre packed meals and extra day supply of food
- Bowls, mugs, cups & dishes
- Water bottles
- Water filter or other treatment system
Keep snacks like energy bars, chocolates and nuts which you can eat easily on the move. For lunch, and dinner you can keep pre packed food. Keep some extra supply of food to meet the exigencies.
Check on the map for any water reservoir of your planned track. You need lot of water. Because we sweat too much while hiking. Keep a good water filter system or water filter tablets.
4. First aid supplies, Fire, Repair kit & Tools
- Basic First aid kit, bandages & surgical cotton
- Mosquito & flies replant
- Basic medicine of fever, cough, cold, vomiting, headache etc
- Prescription medications and glasses
- Matchbox & lighter
- Fire starter (For emergency survival fire)
- Waterproof container
- Knife and multi tool
Keep a small pre packed basic first kit including your prescription medications and glasses. Don’t forget to keep medicine for headache and vomiting because on high altitude trek due to altitude sickness headache or vomiting can happen. Keep a knife and multi tool in the backpack.
5. Hygiene, Toiletries & Optional supplies
- Biodegradable soap
- Hand sanitizer
- Toilet paper/wipes
- Menstrual products
- Small towel
- Tooth brush, paste and tongue cleaner
- Camera and compact binoculars (Optional)
- Star chart/night-sky identifier (Optional)
- Outdoor journal with pen/pencil (Optional)
- Book/reading material, cards or games (Optional)
- Two-way radios (Optional)
Keep hygiene supplies as per requirement and number of days you intend to trek. For optional items, you need to decide how much you are willing to carry.
Don’t forget personal items like Permits, credit/debit card, cash, cell phone, ID and always inform some one else about your trekking plans and ask someone to contact you after number of days you intend to trek. Keep emergency contact numbers in handy.
Do some research on the trekking place before going and comment if more information is required on the backpacking list.