Preparing your backpack for a walk, whether long or short, is the most important part (along with your shoes) to take care of. Here are some tips!
The first difficulty you face when choosing to purchase a backpack or choosing one from the backpacks that we already have or will lend to us is: how big should it be (how many litres)? It depends on many factors. But getting to the point, a lot will depend on whether you will tackle a journey in summer or winter. In winter it will have to be larger because you will be carrying bulkier things and in summer it can be smaller because clothing is much more essential.
It will also depend on how many days the journey will be but, whether it is 3 days or 30 days, if you get into the right mindset, i.e. to wash what you use often, a journey of many days or months can easily be calibrated to a "normal" liter . For the record... if you're planning a multi-day trek I think you'll be wild enough to understand that you'll have to wash your clothing often!
The ideal liter capacity for a walk on marked paths even with differences in altitude and in a mountain or medium mountain environment is around 40 LITRES. It could be 10/15 liters more if we have to tackle a journey in winter and if we want to be totally independent (tent, stove, etc) or 10 liters less if we undertake the journey in warmer periods. Check that the backpack has external straps to be able to place the tent in such a way that it does not take up internal space. Otherwise everything changes! But it's hard for me to think of a modern backpack that doesn't have external straps.
How do you figure out the volume yourself? Take a large enough envelope, about 35/40cm wide and transparent so that you can see how you place all the things inside. Start putting all your clothing in an orderly manner, but first place a pair of shoes or sandals (the spare ones) at the bottom. Finally put all the accessories. Now if you already have a backpack, try putting everything inside and see if it fits. If it goes, you're fine. If you don't have a backpack, go to a specialized shop, like BF Mountain SHOP , bring the swag and try to put it inside your backpacks until you find the right one!
The clothing to bring that will fill our backpack must be composed as follows:
- Technical clothing : Breathable t-shirts, trekking pants, technical socks.
- Additional layers : More or less light fleece depending on the season, waterproof/windproof jacket.
- Hat and sunglasses : Sun protection is essential, especially in the warmer months.
- Comfortable shoes : Trekking boots or walking shoes suitable for the terrain. This is another very important choice that we will address in another article!
- Sleeping bag and mattress : If you plan to sleep in unconventional accommodations.
- Trekking poles : Useful for supporting the knees and aiding in walking.
- Flashlight or headlamp : For moving around at night or in poorly lit places.
- First aid kit : With plasters, disinfectant, essential medicines.
- Personal hygiene : Toothpaste, toothbrush, soap, microfiber towels.
- Sunscreen and lips : Sun protection is essential as mentioned above. Hat and protection: always!
- Insect repellent : Depending on the season and the areas you will pass through.
Other useful items:
- Gloves and scarf : For the coldest days.
- Water bottle : Hydration is essential and you will always need to carry at least 1.5 liters of water per day/walk. Drink often and little! Avoid walking for hours without drinking!
- Route map or guide : To orient yourself and plan the stages.
- Lightness : Try to keep the backpack light, carrying only the essentials but filling it completely without leaving too many empty areas. So the better you are at choosing ultra-compact and lightweight clothing and with just a few pieces, the more you will be able to opt for backpacks with smaller volumes!
- Test beforehand : Test out your gear before you hike to make sure it's comfortable and functional.
- Stage planning : Divide the route into stages and plan stops for rest and food.
- Sharing : If you are hiking with someone else, distribute the equipment equally among participants.
- Flexibility : Be ready to adapt your equipment and strategy based on weather conditions and your energy level.
A Ferrino model that we would like to recommend because it has all the capacities for various needs, therefore for multi-day walks, or in winter or in summer periods where you will have to be particularly good at carrying the essentials, is: the FINISTERRE model! This is the link to the site https://bit.ly/3y6id6T
Preparing your backpack for a hike requires care and attention to detail, but with the right planning it can become a rewarding and unforgettable experience.