The first question that comes up for every hiker is where to go and what hiking trail to choose. Is it a well-known marked trail or off the beaten path? Regardless of what is decided, proper trail selection and route planning are essential components to a successful hike.
To ensure a better hike keep this in mind:
- When choosing a hiking trail, hikers should always use themselves as a frame of reference, i.e. their level of fitness and their experience and knowledge of hiking.
- Don’t set out to do too much, plan reasonable distances each day. For most hikers around 3,5 km. pr. hour is enough.
- Keep in mind that even though a trail may have markers, visibility can be so poor that it is not possible to see from one mark to another.
- Compasses and GPS devices should be brought, alongside the knowledge of how to use them.
- A travel plan is an important aid for every hiker. With a route plan you can plot day trips, distance to hike each day, write down accommodation details, a contingency plan if that might be needed and other things that are important in making a good hike even better.
- The route plan should be left with a trustworthy person. He or she will then have exact information about the trip, in the event that a situation may arise in which it is needed.
Hikers should consider
- To keep an eye on their hiking companions; you never know when exhaustion or something else will kick in.
- If induced repetitive strain injuries begin to crop up, stop immediately and mend them as well as possible. Don’t delay as that only makes matters worse.
- Be prepared for sudden weather changes and check the daily weather forecast with the ranger or warden before you start your hike each day.
- Stick to the travel plan that was arranged before you left. If you change your travel plan, let the person who only has a copy of the original know about the alterations or write the changes down in guest books at lodges.
- Make a point to always write your name and the date in guest books for security reasons.
- Do remember to properly organise your backpack. The heaviest objects should be placed closest to the back. Ensure that the backpack is not too heavy (15-18 kg); if it is, it can ruin an otherwise pleasant hike.