How To Pack A Trekking Bag: Your Essential Guide

If you’re a fan of outdoor adventures and are considering a trek, it’s important that you take the right precautions ahead of your journey. Whether you’re trekking for a few hours, an entire day, or for several days at a time, understanding how to appropriately prepare and set yourself up for success is key.

To help you plan and execute a successful trekking trip, today we’ve collated a useful list of essentials along with tips on how to pack a trekking bag.

What to bring on a trek

Offering a combination of walking, hiking, and sightseeing, trekking is a much-loved pastime enjoyed by thousands of people across the globe. From shorter treks in local woodlands to famous treks like Mount Fuji and the Inca Trail, those who enjoy this nature-based activity will know that trekking requires several non-negotiable essentials.

If you’re new to trekking or simply want to double check you’ve got everything you need ahead of your departure, we’ve compiled a list of essentials to check off before you go. By ensuring you have the right kit and gear, you’ll be setting yourself up for success as you embark on your next big trekking journey:

  • Comfortable, durable, water-resistant footwear: Before you set off on your trek, be sure that your footwear provides adequate support, is resistant to moisture, and is already broken in. Never set off on a trek with ill-fitting or new boots.
  • Layerable, waterproof clothing: Depending on the climate, you may need to frequently adjust your clothing by layering up and down. Quick changes in temperature and weather conditions can be common on a trek, so it’s best to ensure you can easily adjust your temperature while keeping protected against moisture.
  • Walking poles: That’s right - they’re not just for the pros! Even if you’ve never used walking poles, if you’re going on a longer trek, it’s important to consider trekking poles for added support. These can protect you from getting too fatigued or losing your balance along the way.
  • Lightweight first aid kit: No matter how short or long your trek, it’s essential to bring a lightweight first aid kit so you can tend to any sudden injuries. If you’re trekking in colder temperatures, make sure to find a kit that also includes a thermal blanket.
  • Refillable or self-filtering water flask: Staying hydrated is essential when you’re exerting yourself in nature. A refillable flask - preferably a self-filtering flask for protecting against contaminated water - is an ideal option for those trekking in the wild.
  • Self-charging power bank: Even when trekking the traditional way (with maps and compasses), it’s likely you’ll be carrying your mobile phone to contact others in case of an emergency. To ensure you always have adequate charge, a self-charging or wind-up power bank will come in handy when your battery runs low.
  • Appropriate accessories: Depending on where your trek will take place, you’ll need to adjust the accessories and protective gear you bring. Warmer climates will require lighter clothing, sun cream, sunglasses, hats for shade, and even scarves to protect your eyes from sweat. Colder treks may require protective goggles, hats, gloves, and thermals. Always research the climate (and potential extremes) before setting off on your trek.
  • A reliable trekking bag: Of course, none of the above is possible without a bag to carry your essentials. As a priority, find a bag that can adequately fit your essentials while remaining comfortable even after all-day wear.

How to pack a trekking bag

When it comes to packing a trekking bag, ensuring the right items are easily accessible can really make the difference, particularly in an emergency or when you’re feeling exceptionally tired. To ensure you pack as efficiently as possible, here are a few tips to keep in mind:

  • Practice pack: Before you set off for your trek, it’s best to practice packing your bag to ensure everything you need fits in the backpack you’ve chosen, and that it’s not too heavy. Don’t forget that you’ll likely be carrying your bag for several hours at a time.
  • Pack in order of priority: Before packing your bag, think of the items you’re more likely to need easy access to during your trek. Where possible, pack items that you’re unlikely to need during the walk near the bottom of your bag, while keeping essentials such as first aid kits, water, and safety accessories in more accessible areas.
  • Pack electronics to avoid exposure to moisture: If your bag is not 100% waterproof, be sure to pack electronics like laptops, phones, and cameras away from openings or the outer side of the bag to avoid moisture damage.

How to pack a trekking pole

Despite the wear and tear they are designed to face, trekking poles can be easily damaged if not cared for and stored properly in transit. Below are a few ways you can pack your trekking poles to avoid damaging them or having to carry them when not in use:

Pack them outside your bag: Many hiking backpacks will come with pockets, straps, clips, and bungee cords that can be used to secure the likes of walking poles to the outside of your bag. Taking care not to force or bend them, try securing your poles in an upright position on either side of your bag using the straps and clips provided.

Use a carrying case: Cases can be purchased for full length and collapsible trekking poles, many of which come with a handy cross-body strap. Cases can either be worn or attached to your hiking bag, making it an easy option for transport.

Pack them inside your bag: Collapsible poles can also be stored inside your hiking bag, given they can remain upright. Place each pole against the back of the rucksack, with one on the left and one on the right. Avoid overstuffing the bag or putting added pressure on the poles that may cause them to bend.

No matter where your trekking adventures take you, with the right preparation you’ll be set up for an enjoyable and memorable outing. To find the ideal trekking kit for your next walking holiday or day in the mountains, be sure to browse the latest TOG24 collection of outerwear to find your ideal fit.

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