Hiking is any outdoor walking activity - usually along trails and across unmarked wild country.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

11
votes
5answers
2k views

What exercises are recommended to build strength for hiking?

I've not had much opportunity to go hiking for any decent distance recently and I feel the next time I do my body will probably complain a lot. However, I've access to a gym with a lot of equipment so ...
11
votes
2answers
198 views

Should one run (or walk) back to civilization if bitten by a rattlesnake?

From what I understand the most important thing to do when bitten by a rattlesnake is to get to a hospital. I often go on hikes where I am a few hours walk from civilization at the midpoint of my ...
11
votes
2answers
557 views

What is a buff?

What is a "buff", how is it used, and why should I have one? I've seen them advocated in numerous places, but I'm not sure why a tube of cloth is better around my neck than a scarf, etc.
11
votes
2answers
192 views

Trekking in the himalayan region

Which are the better trekking routes in the himalayan region? Also, how safe are the routes? If any of you guys have been around in the region, I would like to know your personal experiences as ...
10
votes
6answers
591 views

Flashlight or headlamp for night hiking?

Which is better to use during a night trek - a flashlight or a headlamp? Which do you prefer? Would be great if recommend the one you use and tell me what made you buy it.
10
votes
4answers
352 views

Walking up the slopes. To walk brisk or to walk slow?

This question has been eating my head for quite some time now. I trek often and most of the treks involve climbing up to a peak or something similar. I usually carry heavy loads of around 13-15kgs on ...
10
votes
2answers
3k views

What makes nylon an effective material for hiking pants?

I often see 100% nylon pants a lot in stores. What properties does it have that make it effective when hiking? Is it effective in all seasons or just under certain conditions?
10
votes
2answers
353 views

What should I do for a dislocated shoulder?

Under the assumption that I'm far enough out that I need to hike out on my own, and that I have someone who can help... what is the best way to immobilize a dislocated shoulder for a long hike out of ...
10
votes
3answers
510 views

Soft or hard drinking bottle?

When choosing a water bottle for hiking, a very distinct choice I can make (amongst all the other types of materials and hardiness, size and so on) is weighing up whether to purchase a "hard" plastic ...
10
votes
1answer
465 views

What should you look for when buying hiking socks?

A quick search online shows there are dozens of different types of hiking socks, with different materials, thicknesses, and properties. In general, what should you look for when shopping for hiking ...
10
votes
2answers
243 views

How should I correctly use poles and other equipment to avoid back pain on long hikes?

3 of my lower vertebra have irreparable damage, so I have various workarounds to minimise pain and swelling at home and in the office, and even on short term hikes (ibuprofen FTW) but on a longer hike ...
10
votes
1answer
175 views

May hiking in Eastern California

In May this year (6–8 May) I will have a workshop in Mammoth Lakes, California. I would like to do some hiking in addition to this workshop (roughly one week). I have never been to the United States, ...
10
votes
1answer
958 views

Tent floor waterproof rating

I'm currently looking to buy a new tent. The old one had a floor that was said to withstand a hydrostatic head of 10000 mm, but the tents I find in the stores here go to at most 3000 mm for the floor, ...
10
votes
1answer
102 views

Climbing volcanic mountains

I'm planning to climb a few volcanic mountains in Indonesia the coming year. Mostly Mt Kerinci and a few adjoining ones (I'm still making a list of those near by to Kerinci). I believe that most ...
9
votes
5answers
262 views

Logic behind hikers yielding to horses?

Here in California, a lot of trails have signs with a triangular diagram, showing that cyclists should yield to hikers, and both cyclists and hikers should yield to people on horses. I don't have a ...
9
votes
3answers
895 views

How do I prevent rocks or sand from getting in my boots?

So when I hike, usually I get a small pebble or two, or sand in my boots. How can I prevent this? I already wear pretty tight boots, and stopping every so often to take off a boot and get a rock out ...
9
votes
2answers
941 views

Thinking about a road trip out West

My wife and I are thinking of taking a road trip from northwest Ohio to "out west" - Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, Montana, etc. I've never been farther west than Indiana, so it's a whole new ...
9
votes
2answers
357 views

Experiences hiking with a baby: backpacks

I'm a keen hiker, in South Africa. Or, I was... But then our delightful darling daughter was born 7 months ago, and my hiking hobby got replaced with a new hobby. Anyway, my wife and I are very keen ...
9
votes
3answers
1k views

What natural (non-synthetic) fabrics are good for the winter?

Which natural (non-synthetic) fabrics are good for hiking winter weather? I know cotton will generally trap moisture and invite hypothermia, while wool is warm but heavy. What other natural fabrics ...
9
votes
3answers
156 views

Should I always take a hard hat if I go scrambling?

Should I always take a hard hat if I go scrambling? Scrambling (also known as alpine scrambling) is a method of ascending rocky faces and ridges Quite often when I'm out on ridges in the UK, I ...
9
votes
2answers
549 views

What precautions should I take when hiking among herds of elk?

During certain times of the year, some of the hiking trails near where I live wind through herds of elk standing on or near the trails. What precautions should you take when hiking among elk?
9
votes
1answer
450 views

Material of shirt for Desert hiking

I have pretty much always worn 100% cotton shirts when hiking but I have been reading more and more about the amazing "wicking" properties of other fabrics. Is there one that will keep me cooler ...
8
votes
5answers
2k views

How do I treat a blister? How can I prevent getting them in the first place?

When hiking with a new pair of boots or if I haven't been hiking in a while, my feet might get blisters. How can I treat a blister and keep hiking? Are there things I can do to prevent getting ...
8
votes
3answers
340 views

Vibram FiveFingers, useful, gimic?

Looking at the Vibram FiveFingers shoes, I find myself wondering why? What possible benefits do they bring as opposed to a traditional sole? Their web site (in the why barefoot section) seems to ...
8
votes
3answers
3k views

How far is a reasonable distance for someone to hike on their first trip?

How far is a reasonable distance for someone to hike on their first trip? I understand this depends on a lot of variables, such as the person's fitness, the route they are planning to do, etc, but ...
8
votes
4answers
169 views

Is it generally allowed to walk in German forests in the night?

I was geocaching a bit and I've found in many caches the warning not to cache in the night during the winter because of hunting season. My question is, have such limitations a legal basis, and if so, ...
8
votes
2answers
178 views

Safest months to hike in Colorado

I've read that the summer months (June, July, and August) are the safest months to hike in Colorado because these are the least-likely times to run into ice patches that can't be crossed with normal ...
8
votes
1answer
115 views

How can I locate the leak in a inflatable pad, while hiking

Kevin did a nice job of providing a quality answer here for how to find the leak if you are at home. However I usually realize I have a leak when it deflates under me in the middle of the night. If ...
8
votes
3answers
303 views

How to store a backpack while sleeping?

During a recent backpacking trip, we hung the bear bag and got ready to set in for the night and I realized I wasn't sure what I should do with my backpack. Technically the backpack was carrying the ...
8
votes
3answers
219 views

Logs & Rocks - Step on or over?

Growing up we were always taught to never step straight over a rock or log because it is a good way to step on or startle a snake that you cannot see. However, on a lot of hiking forums I see it ...
8
votes
5answers
137 views

New Zealand recommended hiking maps, books and other resources

Me and my girlfriend will go there in January and we plan on hiking for a week or so. Unfortunately there are no maps or books available for NZ hiking in my area. Could you recommend some for me? ...
8
votes
2answers
329 views

What good options are there for wine transport?

Large glass bottles just don't strike me as a "good idea" for hiking. What options are there for carrying wine and preserving the flavor for a couple of days while hiking?
8
votes
3answers
105 views

Packing delicate equipment for a hike

I always try to avoid taking much delicate on a hike, but sometimes it either can't be helped or I decide I want to take it anyway (camera would be the prime example!) How can I best pack such ...
8
votes
3answers
401 views

How should I remove a leech?

Once a leech is attached, what is the proper way to remove it? (I'm assuming that the method would generic for all leeches, but if there are special kinds, please note that).
8
votes
2answers
121 views

Are roads in Iceland closed to hikers outside the winter?

In a couple of years I hope to cross Iceland east to west through the centre. I understand the the roads in central Iceland are only open in the summer. Is that for vehicles only or for walking as ...
7
votes
3answers
215 views

Strengthening exercises for a backpacking trip?

I just finished a 22.4 mile hiking trip, which was spread of two days and it's the furthest I've ever hiked. When I finished my body was killing me, apparently taking long day hikes is not a ...
7
votes
5answers
248 views

What should I do if I break a shoelace in the wilderness?

If I'm hiking in the wilderness and my shoelace breaks, what's the best way to go about fixing it assuming I have no spare?
7
votes
3answers
130 views

Roping together on an icy path?

I'm planning a mountain hiking trip and one of the issues is that the trails that we're following will almost certainly be covered in ice. There are two of us and we'll both be wearing shoe traction ...
7
votes
2answers
125 views

How to prepare for a 1 day 10 mi hike around Gettysburg, PA?

I have two weeks to prepare for a 1 day 10 mile professional guided hiking tour of the Gettysburg Battle fields. I walk a mile a day now easily. But at 74yrs wonder if I can build more endurance in ...
7
votes
3answers
278 views

Depth Perception in the Mountains

I'm not from the mountains. Every time I go into the mountains I lose all depth perception. I can't tell by looking if a peak is 100 meters or a 1,000 meters above me. I have to stare hard and look ...
7
votes
1answer
168 views

Can the Swiss Alps be hiked in the winter?

I would like to hike part of the Alps that go from France to Slovenia, but I'm not sure what type of equipment I'll need. I'm wondering if I need to bring crampons; I have Icetrekkers (Diamond Grip), ...
7
votes
3answers
513 views

Will the benefit of an axe outweigh the drawbacks and win over a large knife?

I've hiked some in my life, and gotten used to carrying a small axe for chopping wood for the fire. But after I bought my self a large fixed-blade bowie knife, I find myself relying less and less on ...
7
votes
1answer
2k views

One-day hike around Prague

I'm planning on visiting Prague and I was wondering if there are any nice one-day (two-day tops) hikes that I could do around there. It doesn't have to be in the mountains, although that would be ...
7
votes
2answers
299 views

Does a red headscarf or hat provide better protection from the sun?

I read in an old tourist guide (from the beginning of the 20th century) that during mountain walks on sunny days one should wear a red headscarf or a hat with red lining to avoid heat stroke, because ...
7
votes
3answers
349 views

What lower temperature limit should I look for in sleeping bag for the Appalachian Trail?

I'm planning on hiking about half of the AT Northbound at the start of May 2013. What sort of temperature ranges can I expect to encounter, and what should I look for in a sleeping bag to best suit ...
7
votes
2answers
206 views

Does the solar powered fridge work as advertised whilst hiking?

I stumbled across this link the other day which seems rather ingenious and was wondering if anyone has tried such a contraption whilst hiking? If not, do you think it would be effective? I'm tempted ...
7
votes
4answers
2k views

Which brands make wider hiking boot sizes?

My old boots are dying. Sadly it took me quite some time to find them, and the particular brand is not made anymore. I have wide feet, like 4E wide, but some 2E boots will fit fine. Unfortunately ...
7
votes
1answer
67 views

How to choose a safe cliff path

When walking alongside eroding cliffs in more built up / touristy areas, there's usually big warning signs or closed paths if the cliff is unsafe to walk on. Sometimes it's obvious why, if the path is ...
7
votes
2answers
146 views

Where can I find information on letterboxing in my area?

Letterboxing is a precursor to geocaching, wherein participants leave notes / stamps in boxes in the wild... It's helpful to have a list or guide to letterbox sites when embarking on a search, as ...
7
votes
1answer
227 views

How can I prevent plantar fasciitis?

Every year or so I'll end up with plantar fasciitis after periods of time where I've walked a lot. In general my walking shoes are fine and have arch support but occasionally I'll need to use sturdier ...