Having the right hiking accessories is super important to have a pleasant hassle-free experience. I have been on multiple weeklong high-altitude Himalayan treks in the last few years. And in this blog post, I will be sharing all of these details based on my experience of trekking in the mountains.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Trekking Backpack – 60L
Having a good quality trekking backpack of min 60 liters is one of the most important hiking accessories. Do not blindly get some random backpack that is not designed for your back. This is an important point to consider when you are carrying your backpack and that too for a week-long trek. If you are suffering from back pain then you might want to consider offloading the backpack. I usually offload my bag as I carry another 8 kgs of a camera backpack.
Hiking Daypack – 10L
Hiking daypack is mainly used when you go around the campsite for a short hike and to carry some of the hiking accessories like water bottles, a small point-and-shoot camera, etc. If you planning to offload your main trekking backpack then the daypack will be one of the mandatory hiking accessories.
Blisters are a common thing when you go on long hikes and this happens when your legs are not comfortable with the shoes that you are wearing. You can either rent shoes if you are not into regular hiking or if you are concerned about hygiene and love to hike more often then I would highly recommend buying Forclaz 500 shoes which are ideal for hiking. You can easily use these shoes for at least 8 to 10 Himalayan weeklong treks. The shoe may be used even in snow or rain as it is waterproof and provides good breathing.
- For a week-long trek, I would recommend having 2 or max 3 full-sleeve shirts. Full sleeve to avoid skin tan. Covering your body is the best way to avoid tanning than any cream.
- Also, have 2 quick-dry pants that are convertible to shorts. Converting it to shorts is super helpful when you want to spend time at the campsite or while crossing the stream etc. These 2-in-1 pants are a bit expensive but totally worth it.
- Duck feather full-arm down jacket is a must for sub-zero or temperatures of below 5 degrees.
- Cold weather woolen gloves. Also, on top of this have a waterproof gloves.
- Inner thermals one pair or max 2 for a weeklong trek. You wear thermals only at campsite and not while hiking. Even if it cold in the mornings, just have a wind proof jacket and not a down jacket or thermals.
- Do not cover your ears with cotton. You will get acclamatized sooner without them at higher altitudes. Instead have a woolen cap or a simple biker’s mask will do.
Swiss Knife or similar knife from other brands. Always must-have hiking accessories where ever you go. There are many cheaper models with almost similar features. Make sure it has a knife, scissors, screwdrivers, etc.
Wet weather hiking accessories
- Rain cover for your backpack or camera bag.
- Wind proof jacket for morning and evening cold weather while hiking. Also it can act as rain cover too.
- Or you can go for a Poncho, not that comfortable like having a wind proof jacket but you can quickly wear it in no time if there is a sudden rainfall. Poncho can cover your top portion of the body along with your daypack.
Biker’s Mask or Head Band
The most underrated inexpensive hiking accessories. I use it all the time to prevent myself from burning the sun to avoid skin tan than using the expensive SPF sunscreen creams. These are super breathable, you just need to get used to it a bit. Decathlon has some super thin and quick dry Biker’s mark for a low price. You can even use it from wind to cover your ears and also as a headscarf. Check out the video below.
Have good quality sunglasses especially if you prefer winter treks under heavy snow. All this can also help you with skin tan or dark circles around your eyes usually seen after the trek. With the headband and sunglasses, your face will usually be covered fully, and on top, you have the suncap.
When you consider a suncap, it is not just any other cap. The one that is made specifically for trekkers is an ideal thing to buy. It has an extended skirt on the backside covering your neck. Also, if it is cold at campsites you might want to cover your head with a woolen cap.
Sleeping Bag Liner
A sleeping bag liner is not one of the mandatory hiking accessories, but I would highly recommend carrying one if you are concerned about hygiene. These days even the liners are provided by hiking groups but they are not lightweight and take a lot of space. The one that is mentioned can be folded to the size of a mobile phone and is super light and keeps you warm.
It is better to carry a headlamp than a torch. Not just any other headlamp but a good one where you can switch between regular light and night (red/blue) light, useful when you are in a group.
The hiking pole provides additional balance and support. Having 2 will be ideal and perfect. Research says, using of hiking pole will improve your performance while hiking in not just providing balance but along you can hike for longer distances.
Other Hiking Accessories
Other trekking accessories include:
- Plastic covers for used, unused, or wet cloths. Also, to keep you camera batteries and powerbanks full charged. Cold weather can drain your battery. You may want to check my cold weather photography essentials article.
- Carry a lunch box, a mug and a spoon. Stainless steel leakproof lunch box for packed lunch. You need not carry a plate and use the same for having breakfast and dinner too or for having coffee or tea. Avoid the plastic lunchbox as it is hard to clean the greasy food items. Also, the metal box will keep you warm when hot food is served.
- High Strength Elastic Tying Rope with Hooks. This can be used to tie just about anything or to dry your cloths or wet socks at your campsite etc.
- Socks – have one for each day. Wollen socks for cold weather. Make sure to keep the used socks outide the tent as a good hygiene practice or in a plastic cover
- Have your first aid kit handy with tablets like cetirizine, Dolo 650, Electral Powder etc
- Have a small piece of spong as big as the one used for dishwasher. This is for spong bath as it is hard to take bath while hiking under cold weather.
- Keep your toiletry kit as small as possible. Carry only the necessities: a toothbrush, toothpaste, tiny soap, toilet paper, a little moisturiser, lip balm, and a roll-on deodorant. Because you won’t be able to take a bath on the walk, don’t stock up on soaps and shampoos. Carry miniature-sized items.
- Hydration pack or water bottles, 1 or 2 liters should be fine. Usually mountain waters are clean and you usually do not need any filters.
- Sunscreen just doesn’t work, I believe it is more of a marketing gimmick to sell cold cream as per my experience. Also, even if it does you need to apply 5 times a day at regular intervals which is hard. Have cold cream instead and a lip balm and apply the balm frequently.
- Mandatory documents, ID proof for forest entry.
In addition to this, if you are going solo, you might want to get many more things like cooking gas, food items, a tent, a sleeping bag, safety gear, etc. But, the one mentioned above is when you go on a hike with some hiking groups like Indiahikes or Trek the Himalayas, etc.
Note that this is not a sponsored post and most of the trekking accessories have been carefully selected after experimenting with these products in the last 7 Himalayan weeklong treks that I have completed and also weeklong treks in western ghats in southwest India. Something that I use for at least another 7 Himalayan treks. If you find this information useful then consider buying me a coffee to support my work and join my friendzone for more stories.