If there is one thing I’ve learned in my years of hiking, backpacking, and travel is that there are always new skills to learn and ways to improve on the ones you thought you had perfected. That’s definitely the basis of a new article from Backpacker magazine, which has posted a series of 100 ways to improve your hiking and backpacking skills.
With so many essential skills to go through, it is impossible to share even a fraction of them here. But, this list is broken down into a variety of categories to make it a bit easier to digest and worth through. Those sub-categories include gear, wildlife, safety, health and hygiene, and social skills. There’s also a section labeled “quick fixes,” which is a rundown of things that hikers can do immediately to start improving their game. Those include not relying on your phone for navigation, not checking weather or trail conditions before setting out, and even skimping on your sleeping bad at the expense of a poor night’s sleep.
The bulk of the tips are found under the other categories, with more detail put into exactly how we can improve. For instance, under the “gear” heading, you’ll learn how to properly use trekking poles, why you shouldn’t hang a lot of excess gear from the outside of your pack, and even how to pack your backpack. The other categories offer similar insights into how we can be safer and more efficient out on the trail, which can make the entire outing much more fun and enjoyable.
There is a lot to digest on this list and fortunately it is written in both an informative and humorous way. There’s a good chance that even if you are a seasoned, grizzly backpacking veteran you’ll learn a thing or two here. After all, this is Backpacking mag and the folks over there know a thing or two about spending time in the backcountry.