One of the best ways to upgrade your offroad experience is by adding camping and hiking to the mix. Whether you’re looking for an easy weekend getaway or a multi-day, rugged adventure, camping and hiking can be just as rewarding as hitting the trail.
But offroader, beware: you don’t want to hit the trail without a few tips to ensure you get the most out of your trip. In this short guide to hiking, camping, and offroading, we’ve put together a list of the top tips for getting the most out of your experience.Tip 1: Prep for Your Adventure Properly
First things first - you need to make sure you’re prepared for your camping and hiking trip. The last thing you want to deal with is getting out in the great outdoors and realizing you didn’t bring the right gear or supplies.
Here are some tips to make sure you pack properly - and don’t forget anything:
- Choose the right vehicle: When it comes to off-roading, having the right vehicle is paramount. Go for a 4x4 vehicle with high ground clearance, sturdy tires, and suspension designed for offroad use. Make sure your vehicle is cleaned and maintained - as this will help ensure your trip is as enjoyable as possible!
- Research the perfect location: Take the time to explore various off-road trails and camping sites to match your skill level and preferences. Study the terrain, check for permits, and confirm campsite availability.
- Pack wisely: Bring only necessary items, prioritizing lightweight but durable gear. Essential items for your trip include a tent or shelter, hiking boots, warm clothing, camping cookware, GPS or compass, a first-aid kit, and any other personal must-haves you feel you may need.
- Notify your backup contacts: While getting away from it all is the goal, it’s important to share your plans with a reliable friend or family member. Let them know where you’re headed, when you plan to return, and your expected route.
Once you've found the ideal spot, it’s time to create the perfect oasis in the woods. And sure, while you could just pop up a tent anywhere, taking the time to find the right spot will make sure your campsite is as comfortable and secure as possible.
- Find the perfect spot: Make sure to select an area that is level, clear of debris, rocks, or holes. After all, you’ll be sleeping on the ground for a few days, so you want it to be cozy! Look for areas where there’s plenty of shade, good drainage in case it rains, and away from bodies of water to minimize insect activity.
- Know the rules: Once you've chosen your spot, make sure to research any local camping regulations that may impact your stay. Some areas require permits to camp or have designated campsites, so be aware of any restrictions before you begin setting up. You don’t want to be asked to leave after you’ve just finished unpacking your gear!
- Gather supplies: After scouting out the perfect location and familiarizing yourself with the rules, it's time to gather your supplies. Ensure you have essentials like a tent, sleeping bag, camping stove, and food. If you’re camping in a remote area, make sure you have all the necessary items to help you survive comfortably.
- Adhere to the “leave no trace” policy: Adhere to the leave no trace policy while camping in the great outdoors—pack out any waste and minimize your impact on the environment. This includes disposing of human waste properly, picking up any garbage that you find along the way, and being mindful of wildlife.
Tip 3: Hit the Trails Safely
With your camp set up, it's time to explore the beautiful surroundings by way of hiking. Hiking is one of the best ways to immerse yourself in nature and discover all that nature has to offer. Before you hit the trails, make sure to:
- Plan your route: Pre-plan your hiking trail by carefully examining maps and researching local resources. Also, don't forget to share your hiking itinerary with someone (Tip #1!) in case of emergencies.
- Dress appropriately: Dress in layers to easily adapt to changing weather conditions. Choosing moisture-wicking materials, rain protection gear, and adequate sun protection is key. If you will be hiking beyond your campsite, make sure you also have a first-aid kit and other supplies.
- Be mindful of wildlife: Remember that you are visiting their home. Give any wildlife along the way plenty of room to move past, and always store your food properly to avoid attracting animals.
- Stay on the path: Abiding by marked trails is essential to maintaining the ecosystem and avoiding unexpected dangers—steer clear of shortcuts and off-the-beaten-path routes.
Taking your off-road trip to the next level with camping and hiking can be an incredibly rewarding experience. Remember to abide by the tips and advice provided, and always prioritize safety during every step of your adventure. Have an unforgettable journey, and make sure to soak in the beauty and excitement that nature has to offer.
Ready for your next off-road camping and hiking trip? Visit Goats Trail Off-Road Apparel Company for a wide range of off-roading gear, apparel, and accessories to suit all your adventure needs! We offer a variety of products designed to help you look and feel your best while you take on the wild. So what are you waiting for? Start preparing for your next off-road camping and hiking trip today!