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Backpacking: What you need to know

by David Smith

Once you are ready to leave the hustle and bustle of the city behindyou and have planned to steal away a day or two into the wilderness thefirst thing you need to know is how long will your trip be. Dependingon the length of your hike you should either go for a daypack or amulti-day hiking backpack. Whichever you need to get , make sure itcomes with sturdy shoulder straps that are provided with enough paddingand curves. Generally cheaper backpacks compromise on the padding whichmakes the straps chaff your collarbones. Also check on the zips to seeif they are strong and durable. Generally zips with bigger teeth aremore reliable. One other thing that needs to be kept in mind is to seeif the backpack comes with a waist strap as it takes much of the weightoff your shoulders. The final thing that needs to be considered is thematerial of the backpack.

Onceyou have got yourself a backpack, the next thing that you need to lookinto is what to pack. Well, the first thing that should be borne inmind is to take the most amount of water possible. Iodine tabletsshould also be packed to treat the water you get on your way. As forfood, take exactly what you would be needing. Packing for each mealseparately, helps. Saves on space, and helps you take only as much asyou need. Next comes the clothes. If it is a multi-day hiking rememberto carry enough clothes to change. Get yourself a good pair of shoes.Keep in mind the place you are going to and the kind of weather that isprevailing there. If you know that the place is going to be cool thenpack some warm clothes. Don’t forget to take your sleeping bag and yourtent if you are planning for a multi-day hike. Besides your clothesthere are a few other things that you would not like to forget to pack.This includes a detailed map of the place, a compass, a first aid kit,a lighter, a torch, a tube of sunscreen, insect repellant cream, rope,a roll of toilet paper, spare batteries, sunglasses and a pocket knife.If your trip extends over a day and you plan to cook then do take analuminum cooking set too.

Having made your list of the things you need to pack the next thingyou should know about is how to pack them. Remember the weight insideyour backpack should be distributed for you to enjoy your hike. First,get over with the heavier objects. Pack them as low as possible. Thehard and angular things go in next. Make sure that they are wrapped insomething soft or else or they will hurt you when you are on your hike.Pack your clothes in a plastic bag to secure them against any waterthat seeps through. Apart from distributing the weight properly theother thing that you need to think of is the accessibility. Make sure afew essentials like the torch, matches, water, snacks, toilet paper,rain jacket are easily accessible. It is wise to have them in the sidepockets of your backpack.

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21 Jan xxxx

21 Jan xxxx
18 Oct 2011 – start of travelblog

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