Posted on 09/06/2016 by David
If you’re planning a hike in North Wales, it’s important to be prepared for all eventualities. Of course, North Wales is one of the best places in the UK to go hiking, but as any other destination in the UK, the weather can be unpredictable, so preparation is key.
Here're 7 important things to pack for your hike:
1. Plenty of drinks
When you’re walking for a long time, your body can quickly become dehydrated. Whether you prefer to carry bottles of water, or a flask with a hot drink in case the temperature drops (or you just love a good cuppa!), be sure to have plenty of fluids with you. If you’re going with a hiking partner, split the weight of drinks between you, so that the weight does not slow you down!
2. Clothes for the weather
When you set out on your hike, the weather may be glorious sunshine, but as you climb up it will get colder, so be prepared for all kinds of weather. Perhaps take a light-weight jumper and hat, and even a pair of gloves if you’re planning a long walk. Being freezing cold will make your walk less enjoyable – it’s too late to wish you had a jumper once you’re half way up!
3. Sun cream
You might think sun cream isn’t necessary, but remember, you can still burn even if the weather is overcast, so packing sun cream is absolutely essential. If you hike often, constant exposure to the sun can damage your skin in the long-term, so the application of sun cream is really important.
4. A resting spot
Everyone knows that exhausting feeling you get when you’ve been stood up for too long! Hiking can be extremely tiring, so finding something to perch on is a great idea. Sitting on a hard rock or a soggy patch of grass isn’t quite the same, so pack a folding seat or padded mat, and take a break on your long walk to enjoy the scenery.
5. Snacks to keep you going
Taking a high energy snack can keep you going through the tricky parts of your hike. Packing something such as a cereal bar, some nuts, or perhaps some Bara Brith you’ve bought from a local market, will feel like a real treat when you’re faced with a tricky incline to overcome.
6. A map to keep you on track
A map is essential. Even if you’ve planned out your route, many countryside areas can end up looking the same, and getting lost is very probable if your route isn’t signposted. Mapping out your route before you set off can help, and perhaps Google Maps (if there’s signal!) will help you to stay on track. Don’t rely too much on your phone for directions, though, as it may run out of battery.
7. Bird watching essentials
When you’re out and about in North Wales, you sure to see plenty of wildlife, including lots of stunning birds. Pop a pair of binoculars and a book of birds in your backpack and see how many you can spot along the way!
Got all these things in your backpack? Then you’re ready to explore the wonderful scenery that North Wales has to offer! Having difficulty deciding where to go? Check out these walks in and around Snowdonia to get some ideas. For further advice on mountain safety, have a look at this advice from Mountain Rescue.
Why not make a week out of it with a group of friends? Rent a cottage that’s close to your hiking routes – hike by day and catch up with friends in front of a toasty fire by night!
What are your favourite hiking routes in North Wales? Let us know in the comments below.