We love walking and offer an array of walking adventure trips. With this in mind, we know that there are many factors that can effect what one will need, depending on climate, terrain and time of year so to compile the definitive list is difficult, but this is our top five:
We know this seems obvious but it is, by far, the most important piece of kit for a walking holiday and one that needs some advance planning. It is not advisable to buy the boots just before you leave, or to buy them in advance but keep them new ready for your trip. Buy them early and wear them in, no one wants blisters on holiday!
So, if you are purchasing new boots we would advise on looking for good ankle support. Although the ankle is designed to bend and flex, over rough terrain the ankle can often tire and support can be greatly received. When trying on the boots we would recommend wearing a thick pair of socks and if you are unsure on sizing, always lean towards the more generous fit, our feet tend to swell in the heat (feet even get hot in cold climates when they are working hard). It is also worth considering if the boots are waterproof yet breathable and have a good sole for grip.
It is natural to question whether it is worth paying easily three times the cost of a normal pair of socks to obtain ‘walking socks’ and, prior to wearing them myself, I went through the same mental inquisition. I was persuaded whilst snowboarding and have never looked back. Blister-free is a dream when the sport you are doing relies on the integrity on one’s feet. Specialised sock are designed to breath, ventilate and support.
When out walking, the weather may alter from that which it was when we first left, we may warm up as we get into a good pace, or we may move in and out of shelter, either way, it is likely that we require different levels of clothing throughout the walk. With this in mind we recommend layers, this allows one to moderate and adapt as required.
We would advise that you look for technical layers as these weigh less and are also designed to breath and then top with a wind and waterproof light-weight jacket. It is also worth considering zip-trousers
Regardless of if you are going for a short walk or a full day expedition, we would always recommend that you carry water with you. Whether it be in a bottle or you feel you will need more and carry a water pouch in your rucksack. Staying hydrated is important and can have a real impact on enjoyment and energy levels. It is also a good idea to carry snacks, oat based energy bars are a great source of drip fed energy as opposed to a sugar hit which can be short lived.
Why a mobile phone you may ask, knowing that you are not going on a walk to make phone calls! The answer is simple, this single device provides so many items that one may want on a walk; a GPS, a map, a camera, a form of contact in an emergency, a torch, a compass. Our only advice, is do not forget to ensure it is fully charged!
This was our top five items to pack for walking, however, please see below a further list of suggestions to help aid your walk preparation.
Batteries/chargers/memory cards (phone, camera and torch), camera, compass, first aid kit, fly repellent, gaiters, gloves, GPS, hand wipes, hat (for warmth or shade), lip balm, local currency, map, map holder, medication, paperwork (passport, tickets, flights details, hotel contact number), pen and notepad, personal medication, plasters, plastic bags, pocket knife, purifying water tablets, rucksack, snood, sun screen, sunglasses, swimming costume, tissue, torch/head torch, walking poles, waterproof case for phone/camera, waterproofs, whistle.