For a simple walk you don’t necessarily need highly technical, expensive specialist kit. Choose your equipment depending on difficulty, terrain, duration of the route as well as personal preferences and needs. Full walking kit includes:
Sturdy walking shoes are sufficient for walks on level ground and in lowlands. For hikes into mountainous terrain, you should have waterproof walking boots with a firm sole, and good ankle support.
Choose clothing to suit the season of the year. Multiple layers using synthetic fibres, which wick out moisture and dry quickly, are best.
Avoid wearing jeans or cotton trousers; they absorb moisture. Lighter fabrics are preferred. Overtrousers are practical since they keep out wind as well as rain.
It does not have to be an expensive, breathable product. It is more important that it is small to pack and light to carry. A small umbrella can be useful. Rain capes are to be avoided.
For day-walks a 20-30 litre backpack may suffice. It should be fitted to the body, with straps individually adjusted to suit the body shape and a broad and soft waist belt to ensure a comfortable but close fit. This can spread the weight between the shoulders and the top of the hips. Since most backpacks are not fully waterproof, it is advisable to have a rain cover.
Walking poles are not necessary when walking on level ground. However many walkers value well adjusted and correctly employed poles when ascending or descending steeper ground. Telescopic poles that can be stored away easily when not in use are advisable.
Sun glasses, hat or cap and sunscreen are essential walking equipment.
Bottles can be manufactured from plastic or aluminium, and should hold a minimum of 1 litre.
1st aid kit
With band aid, blister pack, disinfectant, painkiller, cooling ointment, bandages, latex gloves, scissors and tweezers.
- Spare clothing
- Walking map
- Compass, possibly with
- Mobile phone with emergency numbers
- Pen knife
- Ample energy rich foods and drinks
- Personal medication
When walking in mountainous terrain
Extra safety equipment (e.g. picks, ropes, etc.)