Some Tips for First Time Hikers
If you aren’t addicted to easy hiking yet, there’s no better time to start now that autumn is here.
Blacks, a leading chain selling outdoor clothing, camping equipment, tents and sleeping bags, are now in partnership with The National Trust, and together they are encouraging the nation to enjoy the British countryside.
Easy hiking isn’t just about finding the most enjoyable and easy going trails. You can also avoid hassle when buying your hiking equipment. Here are a few things to think about when buying your first hiking equipment:
Rucksacks are the most important item on the shopping list. You may think buying a rucksack is a straightforward process, but the number one mistake first time hikers make is buying their rucksack on impulse. You’ll be carrying it on your back for the majority of your trip, so what at first seemed a smart, stylish or cost-effective choice can turn into a real burden, especially on long hikes.
Ask the shop staff to adjust the straps to give you adequate support. What felt comfortable for five minutes in the shop can quickly become uncomfortable when packed full of stuff that you’ll have to hulk across different terrain.
The way you pack your rucksack can make a real difference to the success of your hike. Put the heaviest items at the bottom of the sack and stack the lightest equipment on top so that the weight is distributed evenly.
Check that your desired rucksack can withstand all harsh weather conditions. It’s worth investing in a combined hydration pack and rucksack, because even on cold autumnal days you can get dehydrated on long treks.
There’s no shortage of walking boots to choose from, with a variety of special features to suit your exact needs. These include waterproofing, anti-bacterial treatments, wicking fabrics and shock-absorbing soles. As British weather is reliably wet, it’s best to invest in robust footwear for all kinds of terrains. Blacks handily list the specific activities the boots are designed for on their website and in the shop, so that you can choose from mountaineering boots to ones that are suitable for rock-pooling.
Boots with Gore-Tex linings are particularly sought after as they are waterproofed and breathable, comfortable and durable.
Bear in mind the thickness of the socks you’ll be wearing with the boots. You may have to go up a shoe size in order to avoid uncomfortable rubbing.
Far more than a fashion statement, your choice of jacket will have to withstand the ever-changing weather. From harsh winds to bursts of hot sunshine, North Face jackets are a good all-round brand for this essential piece of kit.
You can buy a jacket that is protected from all the elements while still being lightweight, either by purchasing a three in one waterproof jacket (which comprises of a fleece, a removable hood and other features that can be tailored to suit all weather conditions) or reinforcing your jacket with waterproofing spray.
But style is still important, and there is certainly a variety to choose from, including Parkas, hoodies and Anoraks from North Face in a range of colours from vibrant primary colours to classic shades of brown.