Overnight Hiking Checklist - The Complete List
May 23, 2019 | Blog: The Range

Overnight Hiking Checklist - The Complete List

You know what they say: “Packing is the worst part of hiking.” Okay, maybe we just made that up. But packing does sorta blow. Whether you’re hitting Runyon Canyon or trudging up a mountain in Nepal so you can take a selfie at the peak of a mountain, make sure you’re carting all the essentials when you go.

Here’s our complete Country Archer-approved hiking gear checklist (along with a few product recs) to make packing more fun … or simply suck less.

man hiking on a camping trip  with a backpack on

1. The Right Backpack

Daylong hike in a national park or month-long trek along the Pacific Northwest Trail? No matter the trails you blaze, make sure to choose a backpack with the capacity to stash all your stuff. R.E.I. has a lineup of top-quality hiking backpack brands. 

woman and her dog in a tent on a camping trip

2. Overnight Essentials

If you’re taking on a longer excursion, make sure to stow your overnight must-haves.

person hiking with warm clothing on

3. Appropriate Clothing

Need ideas on what to wear when hiking? Check the weather before you leave, and always pack extra clothes if you’ll be gone longer than a day.

woman lacing up her hiking boots on a camping trip

4. Hiking Boots or Shoes

Sore feet suck even more than packing, so be sure to match your footwear to your hiking terrain. Somewhere between a shoe and a boot, the always-comfy Salomon Hiking Boots get high praise for their lightweight protection and rugged durability. 

friends on a camping trip eating Country Archer beef jerky

5. Snacks

Whether you’re meandering down a trail with kids in tow for a few hours or making your way to the top of Kilimanjaro, plan for plenty of energy-producing snacks.

woman and her dog eating food on a camping trip

6. Meals

Headed out for the long haul? Choose easy-to-carry and prepare meals.

  • Cans or pouches of tuna, meats, or other fish
  • Dehydrated foods
  • Any seasonings you might need
  • Dried noodles or ramen
  • Nut butters
  • Freeze-dried or pre-packaged dinners: Mountain House Meals
     
person cooking on a camping trip with a meal prep kit

7. Meal Prep Items

You’ll want to be mindful of your backpack weight, so only take what’s necessary.

  • Can opener
  • Bowls, plates, cups
  • Utensils for cooking and eating
  • Biodegradable soap 
  • Disposable wipes, paper towels, or a reusable cloths
  • Cooking pot or pan
  • Any food storage like foil or bags 
  • Stove, if necessary
person with a water bottle on a camping trip

8. Liquids

Properly hydrate well before your hike, and then make it a point to consume 2 cups of liquid every hour.

person with a compass on a camping trip

9. Navigation Tools

While we love a good GPS smartphone app, don’t rely solely on your phone. Even trails just outside a major city can have spotty cell service.

  • Map 
  • Compass
  • Whistle
  • Flare or other signaling device
  • GPS apps: Gaia Trail Map
person receiving first aid for an arm injury on a camping trip

10. First-Aid Kit

Find a lightweight kit at the store with all the essentials. Just make sure it has the following:

  • Antibacterial ointment
  • Various bandaids 
  • Gauze
  • Medical tape
  • Pain relief medication
  • Insect sting treatment
  • Tweezers
  • Antihistamine
  • Moleskin for blisters
  • Tampons or menstrual pads if needed
  • Butterfly bandages
  • Antiseptic wipes
man wearing a hat for sun protection on a hike

11. Sun & Bug Protection

Mosquitoes and sunburn — nah, we’re good.

  • Hats with UV protection 
  • Aloe 
  • Bug bite cream
  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglasses or goggles
  • Lip balm or chapstick with SPF
  • UV-resistant clothing
  • Bug spray: DEET not only repels mosquitoes, it keeps ticks at bay.
Opinel brand pocket knife being used on a hiking trip

12. Tools and Miscellaneous

  • Multi-tool or Leatherman
  • Small ax, if necessary
  • Matches, lighters, or firestarters
  • Duct tape
  • Utility cords and carabiners
  • Tarp to cover tent or create emergency shelter
  • Emergency blanket
people hiking on a mountain range

Keep in mind that once you complete your excursion, the real work begins: unpacking (you’re welcome!). Now lace up those boots! Climb that mountain! Follow the rainbow to the pot of gold! Just don’t forget to snap your post-hike selfie.

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