Jul 26, 2023
Coastal walking: a packing guide
Here in the UK, coastal walking is a popular and much-loved pastime for avid and casual walkers alike. With their scenic beauty, natural diversity, unique geological and geographical features, and even cultural and historical significance, coastlines offer a rich and rewarding walking experience.
The UK promises stunning coastlines to explore, with plenty of short, medium, and long coastal walks to choose from. At TOG24, we are incredibly excited to be sponsoring the King Charles III England Coast Path. When complete, the 2,700 mile long path will be the longest managed coastal path in the world. So, whether you’re planning on tackling the England Coast Path or just a shorter coastal path near you, you’ll need to make sure you pack properly for your adventure. Here’s where you should start.
Coastal Walking: Your Essential Checklist
No walk or hike is complete without a reliable, weather-resistant backpack that fits well and keeps your essentials safe. Whatever backpack you choose, whether it’s a small daypack or a 50+ litre bag with your trekking essentials, you need to ensure it’s durable and supportive so you can comfortably enjoy your coastal walk.
Even if your backpack or bag is water resistant, it may not protect your electronics or identification items like your passport if your bag ends up in the ocean. Whether the tide comes in a little too quickly or you lose your footing and fall into water, ensuring your electronics are sealed in waterproof bags inside your rucksack can really be a lifesaver.
Weatherproof Clothing & Footwear
The weather near the coastline can be unpredictable, quickly changing from sunny spells to wind and rain. For mixed weather, dress in breathable layers so you can easily maintain temperature control. Depending on the season, this may be a lightweight vest top or t-shirt under a light soft shell and shorts, or a long-sleeved thermal under a warm 3-in-1 jacket with thermal leggings and walking trousers.
It’s also wise to bring along some lightweight emergency waterproof layers like a packaway jacket and trousers in case the rain strikes. Depending on the season, you’ll also want to consider accessories for warmth (such as a beanie and gloves) or sun protection (such as a baseball cap and sunglasses).
Footwear is also incredibly important for your coastal walk – opt for walking boots or shoes with a durable construction that provide adequate support for your feet, arches and ankle. Boots and shoes with plenty of grip and water resistance will be important on coastal terrain where the surfaces may be uneven and water may be present.
Snacks & Water / Hydration
No matter how short or long your walk, it’s crucial to have water to keep hydrated, especially on warmer or sunny days. Snacks are also a great idea in case you need a bit of an energy boost along the way or that cafe or pub you were looking forward to ends up closed. Hydration is important for your comfort and safety, so be sure to bring enough water for your entire walk.
First Aid Kit
Compact first aid kits should be a staple in any hiker’s essentials kit. On uneven and slippery terrain such as loose pebbles, sandy surfaces and rocky cliffs, slips and falls are more common than you think. Whether you’ve grazed your hand and need a bit of ointment and a plaster or get stuck out in the wind and rain in the dark and require an emergency blanket and torch, first aid kits can be extremely useful and beneficial.
Mobile Charging Bank
Nowadays, many of us use our mobile phones to navigate walking routes and take photos along our walks. Naturally, this can really drain batteries, so to be safe, always carry a portable (and fully charged) mobile charging bank. And don’t forget the cord!
Regardless of the season, it’s important to ensure you have a high-level SPF during any coastal walk to protect your skin from UV rays. This will not only protect against sunburn, but it can also help prevent sunstroke and skin damage.
Though it’s unlikely you’ll need one on your average coastal walk, a multi-tool such as a Swiss Army Knife can come in extremely handy if the occasion calls for it. These typically come with cork screws, a knife, a bottle opener, a nail file, tweezers, a toothpick, and more - all of which can be useful when you’re out in the wild and need a quick solution.
If you’re a fan of birdwatching, photography and general sightseeing, don’t forget your binoculars or camera along with any lenses you may want to bring. Taking time to soak in the natural sights can make coastal walks all the more rewarding. If the coastal area you’re visiting allows metal detecting, you can bring that along as well, or even a geology guide so you can identify and note any interesting finds.
Shop for your Coastal Walking Essentials at TOG24
No matter where your coastal adventures take you, with the right essentials, your coastal walk will be far more enjoyable. Above all else, make sure to prioritise weather-resistant and protective clothing for your comfort as well as the items that will keep you fed, hydrated, and safe in the case of an emergency.
You can find all your coastal walking clothing, accessories and footwear at TOG24. You can choose from water resistant jackets and trousers to rucksacks, water flasks, walking boots, and more. Simply browse the full range to prepare for your next coastal adventure.