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10 Essentials to Hiking

10 Essentials to Hiking

Alpine Start Outfitters |

The air is crisp, the temperature has gone down, and the flying insects that attack our faces are less rampant on the trails. It’s time to go on a beautiful fall hike. 

In our first blog ever, we bring you the “10 Essentials” of hiking any trail, but especially in BC this fall and winter season. 

It should be noted that this is not an exhaustive list and assumes that you have done the following:

  • Wear reliable hiking boots that are already broken in and won’t leave you with wet socks or blistered feet 
  • Carry a proper hiking pack that can support the weight of the items you are bringing 
  • Studied the hike route and weather forecast (including trail conditions like avalanche warnings) beforehand
  • Let someone know where you are headed and when they should expect you back in town  



10 Essentials to Carry in Your Pack this Season

  1. Communication Device

    • Whether it’s your cell phone or radio device, we must have a reliable source of communication on the trail. Make sure your phone is charged and batteries in your devices are working before you head out. 

  2. Navigation

    • Your phone or battery powered devices are bound to die in prolonged or weather impacted emergency situations. In these cases, having a navigation system like a compass can be crucial to your trip back to your car. 

  3. Light

    • Traveling in nature means nothing is consistent and you never know how long you will be in the woods or how light will change. Always bring a source of light with you like a headlamp or a flashlight. 

  4. Signaling Device

    • In case of an emergency, you need to be able to signal your position to the search and rescue team. Bring a whistle, a bell, or a pencil flare with you. A bear bell can especially be helpful in our backcountry where bears live. 

  5. Shelter

    • Now, we aren’t suggesting you bring a full on tent with you every hike. However, in the event that someone is injured, or you are lost, prolonged time exposed in the backcountry can be detrimental, whether it be spending too much time in the sun or too much time in the rain or snow. Bring a ultra-lightweight bivy or tarp with you that can easily transform into a temporary shelter. 

  6. Extra Clothing 

    • Following this list’s theme of “you never know what to expect in nature” - one of the most unexpectable components is the weather - especially here in BC. Whether it’s windchill, rain, or, really, your own sweat, you need to have dry clothes to keep yourself safe and warm. Bring an extra layer, extra socks, and a toque

  7. Fire

    • An easy essential to pack - box of matches in a waterproof baggie, or a lighter will do. Fire is the greatest invention by humans after all. 

  8. First Aid Kit

    • You don’t know how many times I’ve resorted to my nifty first aid kit on the trail. Blisters, cuts, strained muscles, you name it, and my first aid kit had me covered. 

  9. Water and Food

    • This one is a no-brainer, but often overlooked. It doesn’t matter how long you think your hike is going to be. Bring a couple granola bars and extra water with you at all times. Food and water are quite literally essential to life, and you don’t want to be struggling without them on your excursion. 

  10. Pocket Knife 

    • These will come in handy for so many different things, but most importantly for cutting down small branches for fire or shelter in emergency situations. 



ADDITIONAL Essentials for fall and winter


  1. Traction Device
  2. Gaiters 
  3. Waterproof jacket 
  4. Pack cover 

Have you got all you need for your next hike? Nature isn’t one to be messed with or undermined. Although our trails are beautiful and picturesque, we need to be prepared when we enter the backcountry. Be sure to check out our current promotions here if you need to stock up on your essentials.


And remember, LEAVE NO TRACE. Let’s keep our trails beautiful and healthy. 

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