Backpacking For Beginners

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Tom over at Two Heel Drive has some really great advice today for the beginning backpacker. His comments were inspired by this thread over at and he offers up advice on how to get started.

The original poster in the thread says that he has become an avid day hiker, but would like to get into camping as well, and isn’t sure where to begin. He’s a part of several groups that do over-nighters and treks of several days length, and now he’d like to join in the fun. There is some good advice in the thread as well, but Tom, and his infinite wisdom, boils it down quite nicely.

Amongst his tips are some really great advice such as taking a course at the Sierra Club, renting equipment at first while you decide what you do and don’t like, and learning to sleep on the ground by spending a night or two on the patio first. My favorite of his suggestions though is to “Be very picky about your pack”, and I couldn’t agree more. Nothing can spoil a day on the trail more quickly than an ill fitting pack that doesn’t carry a load easily. Well, that and crappy boots, so be picky there as well.

He closes the post with this really great nugget as well: “And never forget it involves going places where there are no toilets.” So true Tom. So true!

Kraig Becker

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