The things we wish we knew before we started hiking
We all must start somewhere. You see all these influencers on social media going on these majestic hikes and wonder where and how to get started. Most of these people have been hiking or training for these hikes for most of their life’s. It takes time and I don't recommend most of these hikes for beginners. So, we are going to dive into a few tips and strategies for beginner hikers to get moving on the trails and build up confidence.
Our first strategy is to start with simple hikes. Start with hikes that aren’t going to have a lot of elevation change and stay flat throughout the duration of your hike. A big change in elevation can cause an inexperienced hiker a lot of trouble. As well as elevation change try keeping your hike to a round trip of about 4 miles. Anything over 4 miles can start to wear you out and be a lot on your body and mind. It’s okay to start small and build your condition and confidence.
The second and probably most important aspect is to do your research. Google is your best friend! I promise you on every new hike or old one we haven’t done in a while we are always checking google to make sure everything is a go. This will also help you decide on the level of difficulty that you would like to hike. Also, one of our favorite tools is google earth to really look and see the hike and all the obstacles and beauty it holds. Another good option for this is an app called “All Trails”. This is a great app to use if you are in a new location and don’t know a lot about the area you are in. This app will show trails, hikes, waterfalls, swimming holes, and hot springs in the area you are. It will give you the level of difficulty and as well as let people communicate how the trail is and if there are any issues or closures as well. Do your research!
The third and sometimes what I struggle with the most is overpacking. Especially on a hike you haven’t don’t before it is always safe to pack more water, clothes and food then you expect. There have been a few times we have gotten ourselves in trouble because we got a little overconfident and ran out of all our food and water. Especially when you have an adventure buddy like me (my puppy Dude) its key to bring enough snacks and water to keep you guys fueled and motivated.
These are three easy steps to help you get started on your hiking journey. It’s always important to start your hike at your own pace. Don’t compare yourself to others because we are all on different parts of the same path. It’s all about the journey so enjoy the beauty around you! As always pack out what you pack in and act without hesitation! There is no better time than now. UHVentiure on!