Undertaking any number of outdoor adventures can be a blast with the right people. Like other activities you enjoy together, you’ll make extraordinary memories with your friends and family and have fun doing the most exciting and daring activities, like hiking, skiing, mountain climbing and snowboarding.
But if you’ve never been on an outdoor adventure, you could wind up running out of supplies or going hungry if you aren’t properly prepared. To avoid running out of any essentials or encountering other common problems on your trip, check out these tips for making sure the trip goes as smoothly as possible so that you’re busy making memories — not mistakes.
Here are a few things you should know about outdoor adventures before you head out.
1. Pack the Essentials (and Some Extras)
Before you head out on your next outdoor adventure, make sure to pack the essentials, like food and water, flashlights, sleeping bags, a tent and a Swiss Army knife. If you’re not down wiping with leaves, then grab a roll of toilet paper — biodegradable, if you can — and throw it in your bag. You might also want to invest in a cooking set so you can grill up something to fill your belly. And if you can’t start your day without a cup of java and you’re feeling really fancy, consider bringing along a camp-ready French press coffee maker.
2. Find the Best Ways to Get to Your Destination
Anytime you travel, there’s typically more than one way to get to your destination. If you’re traveling with a group, discuss your preferred ways of traveling. For example, you’ll need to answer questions like:
- Will you fly or drive?
- Once you’re there, how do you plan to get around?
- Is public transportation available, or will you have to rent a vehicle?
To make sure everyone’s on the same page, it’s best to discuss everyone’s preferences and limitations prior to leaving for the trip.
3. Pack the Right Apparel
With any outdoor activity, it’s important to be able to keep warm, cool, protected and comfortable so you can truly enjoy your outdoor adventure to the fullest. So make a list of clothes and gear you plan to bring on the trip and share it with the group.
Think about the things you’ll need for your specific type of adventure. For example, if you’re going skiing, you’ll most likely need ski boots, pants, a warm fleece and a coat, amongst other things; after all, you don’t want to arrive at your destination and realize you don’t have the right gear to participate in your favorite activities.
4. Prepare for Intermittent Problems
If you don’t foresee encountering any problems on your outdoor adventure, then think again. Now, preparing for the worst may sound like a pretty negative attitude to have right before your getaway, but it’s better than not having a plan when a problem does arise.
Preparing for any possible detours or full-blown problems can save your trip from being ruined — and it could even potentially save your life. That’s why it’s important to pack not only the essentials but backups as well. While we would all like to believe everything will go smoothly, there’s simply no way of predicting the future, and being overly prepared never hurt anyone.
5. Get a Guide in New Places
If you’re visiting a new place for the first time, things can seem pretty overwhelming if you’re traveling solo or with others in the same boat. With that in mind, consider hiring a guide to show you the best activities and spots in the area in order to avoid getting lost or in trouble.
A guide can also provide any equipment you might not have been able to bring with you on a plane or a cramped car, like a kayak or a mountain bike. So if you’re doing anything other than hiking in an unfamiliar location, think about hiring a guide to help you get around. All it takes is a simple Google search. Make a list and narrow it down based on your preferences and, of course, any reviews.
Be Prepared and Have Fun
Now that you’re fully aware of what to think about before heading out on your next outdoor adventure, you can begin making plans, creating lists and doing your research. If you’re traveling with a group, remember to make sure everyone is in agreement before making any concrete plans. But most of all, be prepared and have fun!