Warmer weather, trees and flowers in bloom, and the fresh scent in the air make spring the perfect season to take a hike. But like in any season, it’s important to bring the right gear along! If you’ve never hiked in spring, you may not know exactly how to pack or what to wear—that’s why we’ve put together this list of what to bring on a spring hiking trip.
Spring Hiking Clothes
Your spring hike will be much more enjoyable if you dress for the weather. Here’s a basic idea of what you should wear on your hike.
Before all else, start with a quality base layer. Even though it’s no longer winter, spring weather, too, is often wet and chilly. You’ll be grateful for your warm, quick-drying outdoor thermals when the wind starts to blow.
Next, put on an insulating mid-layer. This layer will give you a little extra warmth on colder spring days. If you’re hiking on a warm spring day, you may want to skip this layer and head straight to the outer layer instead.
The outer layer is responsible for protecting you from the wind and rain on an overcast spring day. Even if it’s not raining when you set out on your hike, it’s advisable to bring a rain jacket or windbreaker along, just in case.
Keep your feet warm, dry, and unblistered with a quality pair of hiking socks. Choose a pair made of synthetic or wool material rather than cotton—cotton retains moisture and once they get wet, will make for an uncomfortable rest of your trip.
Waterproof Hiking Shoes or Boots
Having a pair of waterproof hiking shoes or boots is especially important in spring. Even when it’s not raining, the ground tends to be wet, muddy, and slippery in spring due to the recently melted snow or a passing rain shower. A good pair of shoes or boots will keep your feet dry and give you traction as you trek through these conditions.
Once you’ve picked your outfit, it’s time to pack your gear! In addition to your hiking clothes, here’s what to bring on a spring hiking trip.
A sturdy, waterproof backpack is the perfect place to stash and conveniently carry any necessities while you hike. While you can probably get away without bringing one on a short hike, a backpack will be essential on a longer hike or a camping trip.
Traveling along some rough or slippery terrain? Bring along a set of trekking poles or a hiking staff to stabilize yourself during the hike.
Snacks and Drinks
Keep up your energy during your hike with a supply of snacks and fresh water. Portable, energy-filled snacks like granola bars or nuts are good options.
Even when you take measures to avoid them, accidents can happen. Be prepared by bringing along an emergency kit filled with medical supplies and some safety gear like small flashlights, pocketknives, and communication devices.