Hiking As A Beginner
A walk in nature walks the soul back home - Mary Davis
What they never tell you about hiking is how tough it will be when you first starting out.
If you're starting out as a beginner as hiking, let me share some of my experience. I've only recently started hiking with my friends, and we went in without reading up or gaining more knowledge. It was a let us head in and we'll go as the flow kinda thing.
1. Your Shoes
Your shoes are one of the most important things for hiking! If you plan to hike with a semi worn out shoes, DON'T! It is dangerous! I cannot emphasize enough how dangerous it is to hike with a semi or worn out shoes.
Hiking is not a breeze. You don't walk on a straight road. Their roads are steep and rocky, depending on where you hike and how difficult the hiking trails are.
My friends and I don't particularly buy hiking shoes as we're trying to save cost. You can if you're planning to hike almost every day. As we're only starting out for a month or so now, we use sports shoes (I use Nike sports shoe).
The reason why I emphasize on shoes is because when we're hiking, my friend wore a semi worn out shoes. She kept slipping especially when going down the trail and have sprained her ankle a couple of times. It was not a bad sprain as we managed to help her before an accident happen. So, make sure your shoes are in good condition for hiking.
2. Don't Hike Alone
As a beginner, it is better not to hike alone. Get a friend or two to come along with you for a hike.
Why? It's because sometimes, we wouldn't pay attention to where we're going and we can get lost, unless the hiking trail is only a one way, then you don't have to worry about it.
At the same time, with friends, you'll motivate each other to hike till the top. With these motivations, you'll never want to give up and will keep pushing yourself. Don't worry, once you managed to reach the top, you will feel great with a sense that you've achieved something for that day. It's a great feeling.
Besides that, if accidents happen, at least you'll have someone with you to help you out. You may want to hike alone, but it is always better hiking with someone else. You'll never know what can happen during those times.
3. Take a Breather
Hiking is never easy. You tend to lose your breathe quicker than you think you will. It's always okay to stop for a little bit and rest. But, not too long, as you will feel more tired than you should be.
Take as many breaks as you want. If you need to take a break after 10 steps, take it. Don't push yourself too hard. Soon, it will get easier for you and you will take lesser breaks. Nothing is easy in the beginning.
Always remember to bring water with you. You'll definitely need that throughout your hiking. Take a sip of water every time you take a break.
Trekking poles. You'll need that, especially on the way down the trails. Trekking poles helps you to balance and steady yourself while going down steep area.
Currently, we still never got us a trekking pole as our trails are still okay without the use of it. Although, a lot of people are still using it due to the steep area.
Make sure you bring what you need. Your bag shouldn't be heavy, as it will slow you down and makes it harder for you. Just bring along your water bottle and your valuables in a backpack and you're good to go.
5. Best Time?
Morning are always the best time to hike. The cool breeze, fresh air, and sunrise. It's worth it.
Don't hike in the dark. Don't go for a hike in the late evening. You won't be able to see a thing and it will be dangerous. Don't get the perception of 'I have a flashlight; I can use it and still hike'. You will only then be looking down on the trails and not what is ahead of you.
Best time will always be in the morning. Sure, you can go hike around 6 A.M. onward, as the sun will be rising, and it will not be completely dark compared to late evenings.
6. Dress for It
The key for successful hiking is to dress right. If you dress comfortably, it will make your hiking much easier. Don't dress like you're going to a party or event for a hike. You'll regret it.
What can you wear for a hike? Anything that is comfortable for hiking is a good to go. Don't wear cotton because it will stick on you when you sweat a lot, so try to wear something synthetic.
These are just my experience and/or knowledge as a beginner on hiking. A tip or two is always good.
The more you hike, the more you'll know what you should and shouldn't do. Experience comes slowly and you learn as you grow.
And don't forget to take in the beautiful view as you hike. Enjoy hiking and reach for the stars!