The Day Hiker’s Gear List

Millions of Americans go on day hikes all around the US every year. Whether its heading to a nearby national forest, trekking through a national park, or something a little more wild, you’re sure to find a great place to go hiking near you. Whatever you do, don’t go out there unprepared. Use our gear list to get started.

  • Good Shoes – Whether it is a pair of hiking boots, some trail running shoes, or some sneakers, you need good footwear to enjoy a solid hike no matter where you are.
  • Sunscreen – Protection from the sun is key.
  • Bug Repellent – Pick your favorite bug repellent. This will help make sure you have a good time without too many nasty mosquitos.
  • Backpack – A small backpack to keep your things in is a must. Many backpacks also have compartments for water bottles or bladders (see below) and other necessities.
  • Water – Bring a water bottle or backpack with a water bladder. Having water will keep you hydrated and having fun.
  • Food- For long day hikes food is a must! There’s nothing better than a picnic on top of that mountain. Be sure to pack extra snacks for the way back down.
  • Bear Spray & Bear Bell – If you are hiking in a bear area, it is always a good idea to bring bear spray and a bear bell.
  • Map/GPS phone – Know where you are going. Without navigation a day hike can turn into a survival situation. If you are using maps on your phone, make sure to have it downloaded in case of missing cell service.
  • Camera – When you get to the top of that mountain, you better have a camera!
  • Hiking pants and jacket – Be prepared for the elements and dress appropriately. A good place to start is a hiking jacket

Interested in the other types of hiking? Check out our article on the 6 different types of hikers!

Hi! David here. I hope you found this gear list helpful! Have other questions about hiking, backpacking, or other outdoor activities? You can ask me questions on the Sage Board through my profile.

If you want to follow along with the adventures of me, my wife Meredith, and our dog Blaze then please check out our blog I Chafed.

Interested in going on a backpacking, bikepacking, or bicycle touring trip? We are here to help. Blaze Adventure Tours offers a variety of trips and services to help you have your best adventure yet.

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