Aside from the obvious essentials like blister plasters, drinking water and waterproofs, there are a few added extras that will make all the difference to your trek.
1. Energy snacks
Make sure you pack some good high-energy snacks like dried fruit, nuts, cereal bars, or chocolate. But don’t forget you’ll have to carry all your treats – so don’t go overboard.
2. Spare socks
Whether they get wet, cold or just horribly sweaty, there’s a good chance that at some point during the day your feet will feel uncomfortable. Pack a spare pair – or two – but make sure that they’re socks you know are comfy.
3. A bin bag
A super-practical addition to your kit. Use it as a makeshift groundsheet if it’s wet weather, so you can sit down and keep dry when you want to have a snack break or change your socks. You could also wear it as a poncho if you need extra waterproofing.
4. Sun protection
Even if it’s a grey day, you never know when the sun might break through, and there’s nothing worse than walking into a dazzling sun. Sunglasses, a cap and travel-sized sun cream take up hardly any room and will make a massive difference to your comfort.
5. Toilet roll or wet wipes
On a long walk you’ll most likely be relying on the great outdoors, so make sure you’ve got a toilet roll or some wet wipes on hand, and some hand sanitiser.
6. Battery pack
Sometimes all you need to get you up a hill is a blast of music or an encouraging text from a friend, so make sure you’ve got a battery pack to keep your phone charged. It means you’ll be able to take endless photos too and share them with us.
Using walking poles can boost your fitness and give you extra support when you’re walking on rugged, uneven terrain. They’ll give you power when you’re walking up and downhill and reduce stress on your knees. Plus, as you use your arms more while you’re holding a pair, you’ll naturally use more muscles and burn more calories.
It’s a good idea to spend at least £25 on a set, as cheap ones tend to wear out very easily. Look out for ‘spring-loaded’ ones, which absorb the shock on rough ground.
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