Best Hiking Gear

Edited by:

Issabella Emily

Updated by:

Issabella Emily

If you are planning to spend some time exploring nature, outside your home, and far
from your cellphone, then hiking is the best option for you!

Similar to rock-climbing, backpacking, mountaineering, hiking transforms your life. It
makes you feel the value of the small negligible things in your life. As said before, the
more you explore nature, the more you explore yourself.

“To walk in nature is to witness a thousand miracles”
—Mary Davis
But a good experience always entails necessary equipment. To spare you from all the hassle, we’ve created a buying guide for you!

In depth Reviews of top Top 7 Backpacking Gear

1. Best GPS Watch: Garmin Instinct
2. Best Compass: SUUNTO A-10
3. Best Satellite Communicator: Garmin inReach
4. Best Hiking Camera: Sony RX100 VII
5. Best First Aid Kit: Surviveware Small
6. Best Trekking Poles: Black Diamond Distance FLZ
7. Best Head Torch: BioLite HeadLamp 200

Table of content

1. Criteria Used for Evaluation
2. Frequently Asked Questions

Top 7 Backpacking Gear

What to expect?

  • Rugged
  • Thermal, shock and water resistance
  • Built-in 3-axis compass
Who doesn’t want a wander-free hiking experience! With the new Garmin Instinct, you can find your way even when your path is obscure!
Built with 3d resistance (thermal, water, and shock) and extreme durability, this watch is like a dream come true for pro-hikers. You can use it in the toughest of environments without any hesitation, as it is constructed for military standards. The battery lasts up to 14 days in the smartwatch mode, so, even if you are planning a multi-day hike or a backpacking trip, you wont have to worry about the battery!

Never forget your way or route with its multi-GNSS satellite support and outdoor sensors.
The best part about this watch is the exclusive smart watch app which enables hikers to share their map and trek info to friends and family within a second. And most importantly, don’t forget to impress your friends with its unique color availiblity and various editions!

Key Features:

  • Fiber-reinforced polymer case
  • Fully vented silicone bands
  • Secure fit with 2 independent, removable keeper loops
  • Thermal, shock, and water resistant (US military standards)
  • Rechargeable lithium battery offers 14 days in SW mode, 16 hours in GPS mode, and up to 40 hours in battery saver mode
  • Multi-gnss Support
  • Three sensors for versatile navigation (altimeter, barometer, and electronic compass)
  • Tracback® Routing
  • Pair for Satellite Communication
  • Pair With Dog Tracking Devices
  • Smart Notifications

Cons:

  • The screen is monochrome
  • Android users can only avail of text responses
  • You cannot use any third-party apps

What to expect?

  • High grade steel needle with jewel bearing
  • Balanced for northern hemisphere
  • Liquid filled capsule for stable operation
Now this is where you get confused! As you ask yourself, why do I need a compass when I have a GPS Smart Watch with me?
The answer is what will you do if your GPS battery depletes? Or what will you do if you have a budget of less than 20$? Well, these answers aren’t the only ones, but they are sufficient!
The detachable snap-lock in lanyard will allow you to use it easily in collaboration with a map. Fixed declination correction scale and liquid filled capsule will provide you unimaginably accurate results.
This small piece of navigation will help you find your way in the darkest of environments. Whether you are stuck in north or south, if you have this with you, you don’t have to worry!

Key Features:

  • High grade steel needle with jewel bearing
  • Balanced for northern hemisphere
  • Fixed declination correction scale
  • Liquid filled capsule for stable operation
  • Detachable snap-lock lanyard. Easy to detach for working with the map

Cons:

  • Quite expensive

What to expect?

  • Ultra-light
  • Two-way text messaging
  • Trigger an interactive SOS to the 24/7 search and rescue monitoring center
What is a satellite communicator?
Have you ever been in a situation, where you are lost and cannot reach for a single signal bar in your mobile phone? You want to communicate urgently, or you are shouting for help, but can’t find a single soul nearby?
Hiking is one of the sports where communication plays a crucial role. Your shiniest adventure can turn into your darkest nightmare if you aren’t able to communicate with your friends and family.
That’s why we have included a GPS satellite communicator in our list. With Garmin inReach Mini Satellite Communicator you can easily have a two-way communication using the 100% global Iridium network. In case of an emergency situation you can activate an interactive SOS to the 24/7 search and rescue center.
However, don’t forget that some functions need satellite subscriptions and some jurisdictions prohibit the use of satellite communicators.

Key Features:

  • Small, rugged, lightweight
  • 100% global Iridium network
  • Interactive SOS
  • Access to multiple downloadable features including maps, charts, and aerial imagery.
  • Optional inReach weather forecast service
  • Send and receive inReach messages through compatible Garmin devices

Cons:

  • Expensive initial purchase

Distinctive Features

  • Compact
  • Super-fast Auto Focus
  • Wide zoom range
A hiking trip without a camera is a one-time experience, but with your camera you can eternalize your hiking memories and live those moments anytime you want.
Probably you have a smartphone with an excellent quality camera, so why do you need a separate camera? Well, hiking trips are mostly surrounded with the aesthetics of nature. Who wouldn’t want to capture a moment from the ethereal beauty in the highest quality possible?
The Sony RX100 VII in its compact body is packed with multiple features that aim in assisting you to eternalize your moments in the best way possible. With theRX100 VII you don’t have to worry even if you are really far from the moment you want to capture, as the 24-200mm zoom lens covers a wide zoom spectrum.
The best part about the RX100 is the 0.02-sec 2 AF. So, you can capture even while in erratic action.

Key Features:

  • 20fps continuous shooting
  • Blackout-free Shooting
  • Single Burst Shooting
  • Broad AF coverage
  • 0.02-sec 2 AF
  • Real-time Tracking
  • 20.1 megapixels
  • High-resolution 4K recording

Cons:

  • Can only take 250 shots in a full battery charge

Distinctive Features

  • Durable
  • Compact and Ultra-light
  • Waterproof
Carrying a first kit on a hiking trip is mandatory. As said before nature has a lot of surprises, either beautiful or dangerous. Safety should be your top priority, as injuries caused in a hiking trip can prohibit you from venturing next time.
The Surviveware Small first Aid Kit is an ultra-light, compact, and durable first aid kit. Weighing only 1 pound, packed with 100 essential supplies, and protected with 60d Polyester, this is truly a lifesaver. You also don’t have to worry about submerging it into a stream or a waterfall, as this magical kit is waterproof.
The best part about it is the labelled compartments. As said by Benjamin Franklin “For every minute spent organizing, an hour is earned”, you can save your precious hiking hours by keeping your supplies easily organized into the labelled compartments.

Key Features:

  • Durable
  • 60d polyester
  • Compact
  • Packed with 100 essential supplies
  • Weighs only 1 pound
  • Waterproof
  • Labelled compartments
  • FSA & HSA approved

Cons:

  • Thin bandages

Distinctive Features

  • SlideLock technology
  • EVA foam grip
  • Three-section foldable shaft
I am not a 50-year-old man who needs any walking assistance! Then why do I have to spend money on trekking poles?
Well, you don’t know what nature has kept hidden from you! if you don’t want to have serious surprises then don’t forget a trekking pole the next time you plan for a hiking venture. The best part about trekking poles is that you can also use them as your tent support.
The Black Diamond Distance FLZ has every feature mentioned in its name. FL stands for Flick Lock which enables hikers to configure the pole easily and quickly. The Z stands for the shape, as the shaft is three-section foldable which makes it compact enough to carry on your backpack. The EVA foam is designed to provide you maximum comfort and stability.
No more do you have to worry about slippery trails, crossing stream, poisonous plants, or steep downhills. As long as you have the Distance FLZ with you, you are safe!

Key Features:

  • SlideLock technology
  • Improved joint support
  • Lightweight EVA foam
  • Three-section foldable shaft
  • Aluminum construction
  • Interchangeable, non-scarring rubber
  • Secured folded sections with stopper basket
  • Ultra-light (415g to 475g per pair)

Cons:

  • The tips are hard to unscrew

Distinctive Features

  • Ultimate Comfort
  • Excellent Fit
  • Four light modes
In the darkest of hours, when your heart is vibrantly throbbing, when you are hearing wild cries, a source of lamination can save you from all that tremor. Cave explorers and hiking maniacs often tend to carry a head torch with them. If you are on a multi-day hiking trip and you want to continue walking during the night, you must carry a head torch to avoid tripping and stumbling.
The BioLite HeadLamp 200 is an extremely comfortable and verstaile head lamp, with a rechargeable battery that lasts up to 3 hours on high power and 40 hours on low power. The best part about it is its ultra-light weight (less than 50g) which makes you feel as if you aren’t wearing it.

Key Features:

  • 200 lumens output
  • Weight: 50g
  • 4 light modes
  • Easy front panel tilt
  • Rechargeable battery
  • Lasts up to 40 hours on low and 3 hours on high
  • 3D Slimfit
  • Transformable into a lantern (if paired with Light Diffusing Stuffsack)

Cons:

  • Very small on/off button

Criteria Used for Evaluation

Essentiality

A hiking trip is a pleasure trip usually planned to explore nature and explore yourself. The essentiality of gears and equipment is an important factor to consider, as you cannot carry every item you desire. The above provided list contains items that contribute in terms of comfort, necessity, and fulfillment. Each and every item from Garmin Instinct GPS Watch to BioLite HeadLamp 200 comprises of equal importance. Carrying these items helps you get most out of your hiking experience.

Durability

Durability ensures safety and protection. For example, weak trekking poles can cause serious injuries if they break. Similarly, if your GPS Watch and Satellite Communicator isn’t rugged and durable, you can have difficulty communicating in times of emergency. Therefore, durability should never be compromised for price, weight, or any additional feature.

Key Features

Key features make easier for users to relate the item with their trip. Efficient selection of items for a hiking trip helps plan faster and enjoy more. We have highlighted the key features so users can decide whether the product is optimum for them.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is the difference between backpacking and hiking?
A:A hiking trip encompasses various forms of walking in multiple terrains (including one-day hikes and multi-hikes), while a backpacking trip is more often an overnight or a multi-day hiking. The most noticeable difference is that you have to carry all your gear in a backpack while on a backpacking trip. Hiking mostly incorporates exploring nature, while backpacking trip ranges from a wide variety of purposes.
Q: What to do if I run into a bear or a mountain lion?
A:Ha-ha! If you ever encounter a bear or a mountain lion, the first step you should take is to keep still and calm and look in the eyes of it. And then, slowly and gently move backwards until you get out of its sight. However, there are situations when you have to fight with it. In time like that you can use a trekking pole or a fire stick to shove it.
Q: What to do if I get lost?
A:The chances of getting lost on a day climb are luckily rare, but not totally outside the area of plausibility. In this way, it's important that on the off chance that you find that you've lost your direction, you cautiously follow the right convention to discover your direction.

To start with, and above all, don't freeze. At the point when the human psyche moves into alarm mode it settles on helpless choices. The first and most significant activity on the off chance that you've become muddled is sit down and attempt to unwind. On the off chance that you have a guide or route gadget, haul it out and check whether you can check where you may be. Utilize a compass to decide bearings and in the event that you are without a doubt lost, search for a conspicuous milestone that runs a significant distance in a moderately straight line – like a valley, a stream or river, a climbing trail or a street. The chance of being lost also lead you to carry a satellite communicator with you. On the off chance that you end up not having the option to discover your direction, on the off chance that you have a Garmin inReach or something comparative, you can basically call for help. Be that as it may, recollect, don't freeze, take as much time as is needed, and take the necessary steps to think plainly.

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