What to wear & bring with you?
The selection of proper clothing and gear for a hike / backpacking trip are highly personal and frequently-debated topics. If you are new to hiking/backpacking, we recommend that you:
Obtain books pertinent to on hiking/backpacking that discuss what to wear and/or bring. Some suggestions include:
Visit your local outfitter / gear store as they should be a good resource for assembling your clothing and gear.
You might also want to attend a presentation/course on hiking or backpacking offered by an outdoor retailer, nearby College/University outdoors program, or a local outdoors organization. Examples of providers include:
- Backpacking Light’s Wilderness Trekking School – online and in the field, MT
- Midwest Mountaineering – Minneapolis, MN
- Backcountry North – Traverse City, MI
- Apex Outdoor Gear – Grand Rapids, MI
- Great Miami Outfitters – Miamisburg, OH
- Other local independent outfitters/gear stores belong to the Grassroots Outdoors Alliance
- REI Outdoor School and store-based programs (look for nearby stores online)
- Eastern Mountain Sports
- National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS)
- Backpacker Magazine’s Get Out More tour
There are also some useful online resources. Check out Backpacker Magazine’s online skills training, Andrew Skurka’s How To series, the American Hiking Society’s fact sheets, Backpackinglight.com’s website and magazine, and thebackpacker.com’s tips for beginners.