Ultimate Guide: What to Pack for a Day Hike

Hiking is fun – who doesn’t like to trek and explore the marvelous beauties of nature. Many people love to hike as it provides them with the opportunity to connect with nature closely. It is a super easy activity, but things can go wrong if you don’t pack the essential items. You need to well-equipped properly for avoiding any inconvenience.

Here are some day hike essentials for your hiking backpack:


Whenever you are planning for a hiking trip, you will need to have proper navigation guidance. You can trust a mobile map app and a compass or a GPS device for the purpose. However, for using GPS, you need to have your device’s batteries fully charged for the entire day.

Sun Protection

It is one of the most important day hiking essential item to have in the hiking backpack. Even if the weather looks cloudy, you need to have a sunscreen and a hat always with you.


There are no certain weather conditions – a warm day might suddenly see slight showers. Hence, always keep an extra clothing layer in your hiking backpack. You can keep a hooded jacket or a rain protector with you regardless of the weather forecast.

Illumination Tools

Always keep a reliable headlamp in your backpack to illuminate your path. It will help you get lost in the dark. Make sure you have a spare set of batteries before the day hike.

First Aid Supplies

Another important item to keep in your hiking backpack is the first aid supplies. You can easily get a lightweight kit that is equipped with essential items to deal with minor ailments.

Fire Starter

It might sound like old times but believe me – if you know how to build a fire in some kind of nasty weather condition, you are a life-saving hacker. It is quite a simple process and you can master it by practicing a few times. For the purpose, you need to keep at least two highlighters in your hiking backpack along with storm-proof matches and fire starter cubes. These will help you in building fire quickly in harsh and wet weather.

Repair Tools Kit

Well, you may ask that what is the purpose of bringing a tool kit on a hiking trip and that too a one-day hiking trip – the reason is that you will find the tools very useful. Hence, you can keep a small multi-tool knife, duct tape, or other repairing gear in your hiking backpack. These items will come handy in a myriad of situations such as fixing of tent fabric tears, repairing broken tent poles, and preventing further rips in sleep bag, and other stuff like that.

High Calorie Food and Water

When you are going for a day hike, it is a must thing to keep instant calorie providing foods in your backpack. Will you be able to continue your trek, if you feel low on energy? No! Hence, it is a good practice to take snacks along with dried fruits, chocolates, nuts, etc. for the day-long trip. Also, be sure you are well hydrated on the trail. While you are hiking, your body requires extra hydration. Keep a water bottle with you always. It is an essential item that will help your body system function properly during the day-long venture so you can enjoy your best!

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