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What to Pack for Hiking & Camping
Hitting the trail with the right hiking and camping gear helps so much. We all want that feeling of adventure — but we also want to stay safe.
There’s so much to read and learn about hiking gear, I thought it might be useful to maintain a basic list of the things I use most often on my hikes and campouts.
If you’re just getting into hiking, this list is a great place to start. It will show you most of the things you need to consider. You should augment it with your own reading, research, and by getting personal recommendations from knowledgable friends.
Make sure to read up on how to hike safely and always pack the correct emergency numbers.
Here is the link…
The list hiking and camping kit list includes:
- location-specific trail maps — the best paper maps for the Catskills and Adirondacks
- a quality compass — a crucial piece of gear
- two headlamps
- a pair of mini flashlights
- a plastic whistle for safety
- my two backpacks
- water storage options
- water treatment and filtration products
- trekking poles and gaiters
- webbing and cordage options
- a bivvy and space blankets
- fire and warmth tools
- basic knives
- photography accessories
- sleeping pads and bags
- a basic camping cook set
- a bear canister that’s suitable for overnight treks in the Adirondacks
- a lightweight poop trowel
- batteries and a power brick
- bug repellant options
- tick removal and first aid products
The list also includes winter gear like snowshoes, microspikes, mittens, a buff, a great hat, and an ice axe.
I have personally bought and continue to use these specific products on my Catskills and Adirondack hikes. These are not rando picks, but the gear I enjoy using every week.
There are only two minor exceptions: 1) I have a smaller first aid kit than the one listed; 2) I own a pair of MSR Evo Ascent snowshoes, rather than the (slightly fancier) MSR Lightning Ascents listed.
You can read more information about these items here: Basic Mountain Hiking Gear.
What are The 10 Essentials for Hiking & Camping?
The Ten Essentials is a list of items you should carry on every trip into the backcountry.
This essential gear can keep you safe and on track. In an emergency, it might save your life.
You may not need these items on every trip but, if you only ever need them on one trip, you’ll be so relieved you packed them.
- Read about The Ten Essentials
The list is intended to help in two potential scenarios: in case of an accident or emergency, and in case you need to spend a night outside.
Gear for Your Hiking Gear
These simple products will help keep all your hiking and camping gear in good condition and well organized.
Backpack Liner Bag
If you live in a rainy climate or are doing any water crossings, a pack liner is a great addition to your backpack. Currently, I just use a heavy duty plastic bag to keep my clothes dry. But I know some people like a stronger solution.
This Osprey Ultralight Packliner is suitable for 30L-50L backpacks.
I recently sorted my growing jumble of hiking gear as a fun weekend project. With all my regular hike gear in a single box, I never have to worry I’m forgetting anything when I head out the door.
I spend less time preparing — which means more time doing.
This six pack of 19 quart storage bins for $40 was a great solution. I use one box for my car, and three more to keep my other gear and supplies tidy at home. (They also make a 40 quart sized set.)
I don’t have a garage or a large basement, so this isn’t an option for me — but I love seeing people’s peg board set-ups online.
This white metal pegboard on Amazon is a best seller.
Go forth and tidy!
Hiking Gear Not Included
For various reasons, here are a small number of items I could not include on the main Amazon list.
For legal reasons, Amazon does not ship two important products to New York State residents:
- MACE Pepper Spray — I do not personally have to carry this product (only because I’m a middle-aged, straight, white male and I live in bubble of privilege)
- Counter Assault Bear Spray — I do, however, carry this particular spray when I’m solo hiking in new or quieter places
I had to go to an REI store in Paramus, New Jersey to pick up my can of Counter Assault in person. BTW, the holster linked in that combo is well worth it. Your bear spray is no good to you if it’s stashed inside your backpack.
For some reason, Amazon does not currently have the exact version of my tent available for sale.
My tent is this Marmot Tungsten 2-Person Tent.
Amazon does have the 1-Person and the 3-Person versions available. Go figure.