There’s nothing more rejuvenating than the outdoors and one of our favorite pastimes is looking for new trails to explore. Planning a days-long backpacking excursion isn’t always in the cards, but there’s always time for a quick day hike. Here are some of our recommended day hike essentials for your next outing!
Day Hike Essentials
There are plenty of options for lightweight backpacks on Amazon and most will fall between $15 and $20. We found the 25 liter size was enough to hold a water bottle, GoPro, a light jacket/sweater, and a lunch. Additionally, many will fold up into a small pouch so they take up hardly any space when packing.
2) Stainless Steel Water Bottle
Hydration is key for your day hike! Stainless steel bottles keep your water ice cold when the sun is beating down or your morning coffee hot when you’re hitting the trail bright and early. They’re also incredibly durable, you won’t have to worry about dropping them on the trail. We got ours from Simple Modern, 32 oz. was plenty to keep us hydrated for a 10-mile loop at Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore.
3) Pocket Blanket
Stop for lunch anywhere on the trail with the ultra-portable Matador Pocket blanket. These are great for hiking, camping or days on the beach. They’re water-resistant and fold out to 63″ x 44″, the newer version even includes metal stakes in the corners that act as corner weights or ground stakes.
4) Carabiner Bluetooth Speaker
Okay, so this one’s not essential to your day hike but makes it a heck of a lot more fun. Bluetooth speakers are a dime a dozen but iLuv sets itself apart with this tiny speaker that’s barely larger than a phone. iLuv’s portable bluetooth speaker is weather-resistant and a lot louder than other speakers its size. With the added fun of a carabiner, you can clip it onto a backpack or hammock to provide the soundtrack to your next outdoor adventure (or some awesome shower karaoke).
5) Trail Snacks
Sub the M&M’s in your trail mix for some beef jerky and now you’ve got a great snack for the outdoorsman (or woman). Really any snacks will do, but we prefer lighter snacks that’ll keep our energy up throughout the day.
6) A good hiking shoe or boot
Comfortable feet make a world of difference when you’re out on the trail. Running shoes or cross-trainers may do fine for the casual hiker but if you plan to spend a lot of time hiking it’s worth the investment. We’re big fans of Merrell boots but take the time to try on and test out what’s best for you, your feet will thank you!