My Favorite Hiking Gear 🏕🏜🏔
Hey guys! Thought I'd share my favorite hiking purchases over the past few years in the hopes it might be helpful to other folks out there! Also, would love to hear about favorites other people have — it's a big, expensive industry, so avoiding trial and error when at all possible is the name of the game! 💸
- •I used think I could be both stylish and practical on the trail. This is not possible. What I've learned is the goal should be Laura Dern in Jurassic Park.That is, if you care about functionality. Embrace the paleobotanist vibes!
- •The Sunhiker Y331 hiking waist pack$14 on Amazon, and the perfect fanny pack. Don't be fooled by fancier ones. This is all you need (assuming you only want to carry 1 water bottle). You can throw any size bottle in that holder and tighten it down. The water remains upright so it won't spill. It's got three zipper compartments that fit my phone and snacks and keys. And the back of it is cushioned so it never rubs. Best bang for the buck.
- •REI Sahara convertible pants — girls(Full price is $45 but REI regularly does great sales). Yes, from the children's department. I find a lot of outdoor gear sizes larger, and in these pants I am a medium. Yes, a children's medium. But they are amazing, great for petites and do amazing things for my ass. Quick drying, UPF 50, and delightful. Also, they've got zippers down the sides so you don't have to take your shoes off if you want to turn them into shorts en route. I would bet the adult version is also great.
- •Nike dri-fit shirts($25) Once you go dri-fit, you never hike in cotton again. Took me a long time to embrace these. Why buy another shirt when I have ten regular t-shirts in my drawer that are just fine? And in cold weather, I still agree. But if you're going to be sweating, this is a GAME CHANGER. So breathable, quick drying, odor-repellant.
- •Merrell Moab waterproof hiking bootsGreat all around boot. Comfortable, light and reasonably priced (you can find them around $100).
- •Danner mountain light cascade boots($360 when full price 😁). These are investment boots. They are warm, water resistant, and comfortable. Theoretically, they'll last a lifetime, and Danner has a refurbishing program for when you've lost a good tread. I've loved them since I bought them on sample sale. I've worn them through tide pools, in slick mud, and steep rocks. Through it all my feet remained warm and dry. That being said, if I were only hiking in SoCal, I wouldn't have gotten them. Too hot for our summers, methinks.
- •A sun hatMandatory in SoCal. I used to hike in just a baseball hat, but then you're only getting protection from one angle and your neck is toast. Yes, you will look like a goober in it. Lean in. I have the Columbia Men's Wrangle MTN hat, and it does the trick for the right price ($20). I will say, it could have more UPF protection. If you want to invest in a hat...
- •This one by Tilley's is the real dealIf you're up for shelling out 80ish bucks. But it'd probably be the last hat you'd ever buy. It's water resistant, breathable, machine washable, crushable, 50 UPF, etc etc etc. I do not have one, but I'm eyeing it. It's got serious Dr. Alan Grant vibes.
- •I mean...
- •Also, invest in an REI membership$20/lifetime. They do great sales for members. It's one of the best loyalty programs out there.
- •Side recommendation: Native Shoes(Full price is $40-60, but you can find them on Amazon on sale for way less). These aren't for hiking, but for mellower outdoor activities there is nothing better. Some of them (like the Jericho style seen here) are odor-resistant, water-resistant, and comfy af. Just hose them down when they get dirty. They're like adorable Crocs and I am obsessed.
- •I'm still looking for a great, breathable long sleeve sun shirt that's vented and has solid UPF protection.Oh how I have burned my forearms on hot days once the sunblock sweats off. Once again, Laura Dern was trying to guide me and I ignored her early on. Now I see the error of my ways.
- •SmartWool socks. The best boots are worthless without good socks. Thick wool socks and thin liners for multi day hikes, your feet will be thanking you.Suggested by @sswyryt