With the beginning of a new year and a list of hiking trails we’re planning for, I have been working on getting together our hiking bag of necessities. These necessities are the things that we have learned to make sure that we take with us whenever we go hiking or picnicking or just spending time in the outdoors. After so many experiences of one of us saying “remember to bring that next time we go hiking” we finally decided to put them all together so that we will never again need them but not have them. We used an old plastic travel bag that we had but a ziplock bag would work just as well. The hiking bag makes it easy to grab it and go whenever we are heading out to enjoy a trail or a park. It is just the right size to put in a backpack or a child carrier or even just to take in the car. So allow me to share with you the 7 things that we always take with us for any outdoor adventure.
- Tec Nu outdoor skin cleanser:: I cannot share enough how much we rely on this when we’re hiking. This helps to take off the oils from poison ivy or poison oak. You rub it on your ankles, legs, whatever might brush up against something poisonous and it protects your skin from the plant. We will put a little of this on us and also on our dog’s paws since he generally goes more off the path. If we are unsure if we have brushed against poison ivy, then we’ll also put some on after our hike and then wipe off any excess before getting back into the car. You can find this at Walgreens or CVS.
- Bug Spray :: No matter the season, we always carry bug spray with us because nothing puts a damper on being outside like the swarms of bugs. Any kind of bug spray will work, but if you are somewhere that has crazy big, vicious mosquitos I would recommend something with deet in it. (We like the bug spray by Doterra Essential Oils called Terrashield, the smell is not overpowering like others are and we don’t worry if there is some unknown chemical in it)
- Sun Block :: A phrase I use to hear from hikers on a trail was the higher the climb, the closer to God…and while that may be true, you’re also closer to the sun. Having some sun block is important when you’re outdoors- especially those areas that get more direct sun than others (such as your nose, shoulders, back of your neck, and top of your head).
- Band-Aids :: It’s always good to carry a few band aids just in case you get a scrape or a blister while you’re outside. We always keep some water proof band aids in our bag so that they will stay on no matter what weather you come across.
- Hand Sanitizer :: Not just for keeping your hands clean if you stop to eat while outside, but in the event you get a mean scrape on the trail the sanitizer will help to clean and disinfect the wound before you bandage it up. It may sting like crazy, but at least it will be clean.
- Tissues :: So many reasons to have tissues with you…wiping off the excess Tec Nu off your skin, helping to get a wound cleaned up, wiping the sweat off your brow, etc.
- Cooling Towel/ Bandana :: I am very sensitive to the heat and I am prone to heat exhaustion so we always be sure to pack a cooling towel or a bandana for when we’re outside. If you get too hot, get the cloth wet and put it around your neck or on your head. It also makes a great way to cover your head in case you didn’t bring a hat and are wishing you did. You can also use it to carry things that you may pick up or if you need to a make shift splint for injuries.
Being outdoors is one of my family’s favorite things to do. We love going hiking together and we love exploring new parks. Having our hiking bag has made sure that we have what we need for whatever may happen on our hike. Do you have a hiking bag? What other things would you put in it? Happy Hiking!