Dressing up for a first hiking trip · Tips & Tricks

by - April 17, 2022


In order for the trip to bring joy, first of all, you need to take care of the choice of running clothes. It will protect against: rain and cold, mosquitoes and ticks, nettles and branches.

The right clothes should be comfortable, once again comfortable, sturdy, suitable for a particular route and weather. There is practically no universal clothing (and if there is, it is expensive), so it is necessary to look at specific conditions before going out, including the weather forecast.

Let's start from the bottom up.


Shoes

For a hiker, the legs are the most important part of the body (with the exception of the head). That's why you need to take care of them in the first place.

Sneakers, sturdy and comfortable, well suited for dry weather and not very rugged terrain. But we must remember that the weather can change dramatically, that even in dry weather, many roads are a mud mess, that the grass in the morning is still wet with dew. On the other hand, wet sneakers are not a disaster at all, especially if you know some tricks.

Ankle boots are a good choice for wet weather and difficult terrain. They get wet less, the corrugated sole holds well on the slope, and the tight lacing protects the ankle joint well.

Boots work well for rainy weather. But for this shoe, you need to be especially careful so that the foot does not hang out in the boot. They say that mastering the art of winding footcloths is not so difficult. But if this thought scares you, a second pair of woolen socks will help.

The shoes are wet, there are interchangeable socks, but there are no interchangeable shoes. Simple plastic bags can help in this situation.

There are special hiking shoes: hiking boots.

Their advantages:

  • suitable for any weather
  • they can safely walk through the mud
  • even a small ford is not afraid of your feet in these boots!
  • they sit comfortably and firmly on the leg (if you choose the right one, of course), and therefore do not rub
  • have good adhesion to stones and other uneven terrain,
  • protect the ankle from dislocations and sprains, and the foot from a stone that has fallen by accident.

In general, hiking boots are a good thing, but for a simple weekend hike it’s not at all necessary. On the first exit into the forest, you should go in what you have, and then decide according to the situation.

You also need to take care of the condition of your own feet.

Surprisingly, but true: experience affects the number of corns, they really become less. While there is no necessary personal experience, you can study the theory. Dangling and uncomfortable shoes, folds in the socks lead to calluses. The chance of getting blisters in wet shoes is much greater.

To avoid corns you need to: Choose the right shoes and socks.

It is advisable to ventilate the legs at each halt. At the end of the "working day" it is worth washing your feet in cold water. Seal with a thin “paper” plaster a cross over a place that has begun to rub. Don't expect watery corns! Use Vaseline for regular treatment of the feet.

It makes sense to immediately think about a replaceable pair (this could already be simple sneakers or tourist sandals). Sneakers can easily get wet, and in a boot, the foot can be worn out. Yes, and just from the whole day of walking, the legs get tired, and it can be very nice to change shoes.

It is worth remembering that in new shoes you should not go all day at once.


Trousers

For the first time, any comfortable pants will do, even ordinary jeans, if nothing else. But most of them have many disadvantages in field conditions. The most important: they dry for a long time. Windproof pants are useful to have in any campaign, and in water or difficult mountain - it is a must. These are pants made of synthetic materials, light, windproof and waterproof. Sometimes they come with zippers from top to bottom on the sides - then these pants are called "self-dumping" and they can be removed without taking off your shoes, it's very convenient. If you are looking for women's hiking pants, there are a lot of options both fashionable and up to weather.

Ideal hiking pants:

  • comfortable,
  • dry quickly (and get wet too),
  • strong, not torn from branches,
  • not bitten by mosquitoes and nettles,
  • with convenient pockets (however, this is optional),


Raincoat (cloak, cape from the rain)

A must have if your windbreaker gets wet. Going on any trips, both easy and difficult, you need to think about protection from the rain. The argument “I thought it wouldn’t rain, so I didn’t take a raincoat” sounds very childish, although our instructors hear this from time to time. In almost EVERY list of equipment there is an item "raincoat" (a rare exception is countries with a pronounced tropical climate, where it never rains in a certain season). It’s better to have a raincoat in your backpack for the whole trip than not to have it in a downpour. If you are happy with the prospect of walking through and through wet in a piercing wind - in this case, you can not take a raincoat :)

Raincoats are:

  • thin multi-colored polyethylene - in which grandmothers usually sell flowers near the subway. We don’t take such raincoats on a hike, because colored polyethylene will remain on the very first bushes or tear already when putting on a backpack;
  • dense polyethylene - you can take it, but there is a drawback: plastic raincoats “do not breathe” and you can’t walk in them for a long time, you will get wet anyway, because sweat;
  • made of special fabric - sold in equipment stores, they are inexpensive, breathe (you don’t sweat under it) and withstand heavy rain;
  • Poncho raincoats - made of the same special fabric, cover the tourist along with the backpack. Pros: both the person and the backpack are protected. Cons: difficult to put on without assistance, and at a halt, when it is raining, and the backpack is off your shoulder - you are sitting in a poncho, and the backpack gets wet in the rain.
  •  there are better raincoats, made of membrane fabrics - but then it will be a membrane raincoat, described a little higher.

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