Cold Weather Hiking Checklist

Category Item Comment Before you go – Electronic devices Make sure that everything is fully charged Before you go -Check out the weather forecast Local forecasts for when and where you plan to camp or hike Before you go – Leave an itinerary Tell somebody where you’re going and when you’ll be back – friends, family, park officials Before you go – Wallet Make sure that you take your wallet with your id, drivers license, cash and credit cards Before you go – Fill up the gas tank

Cold Hiking
Cold Hiking

Emergency Equipment

First Aid Kit Check out our first aid kit checklist for more information Emergency Equipment – Whistle Can be heard much further away than shouting, and you can blow your whistle for much longer without getting a sore throat Emergency Equipment – Cell Phone Can be useful but not to be relied upon – you can’t always get a signal Emergency Equipment – PDA Very useful too Emergency Equiopment – Needle & thread Remember, a stitch in time saves nine Emergency Equipment – Duct tape You can fix almost anything with duct tape . . . The hikers best friend Emergency Equipment – Safety pins For when the duct tape didn’t quite work Emergency Equipment – Cable ties/zip ties/tie wraps Can tie many more things than cables, take various sizes with you, they don’t take up much space Emergency Equipment – Heat packs Emergency Equipment – Hand warmers

Trail Equipment

Back pack The size you choose depends on the length of your trip Trail Equipment – Day pack Optional extra if needed Trail Equipment – Fanny pack Can be used for a little extra storage Trail Equipment – Map (s) Trail Equipment – Compass Make sure that you know how to use your map and compass properly Trail Equipment – GPS device Optional but a really good idea (can be used alongside map and compass, but should never replace them) Trail Equipment – Swiss army knife Or similar, something with lots of useful gadgets to do lots of useful stuff Trail Equipment – Extra food and water However long you expect to be out, cater for an extra day or two at least with plenty of energy snacks Trail Equipment – Extra clothing Layers keep you warm and dry, so make sure you have lots of spare layers

Camping Equipment

Food storage device Camping Equipment – Flashlight With extra batteries Camping Equipment – Headlamp With extra batteries – optional but very useful when you need a little hands free light Camping Equipment – Matches Make sure that they are stormproof and stored in a waterproof container Camping Equipment – Fire starter Fire can keep you warm, cook your food and save your life Camping Equipment – Water filter or purifier In case you can’t carry enough water for your trip you must make sure that water you collect is safe to drink Camping Equipment – Water purification tablets To purify the water from the melted snow Camping Equipment – Tent Make sure it’s a four season tent, or bivvy sack if that’s what you prefer Camping Equipment – Tent stakes Make sure that you have snow stakes to anchor the tent in the snow Camping Equipment – Rain fly Camping Equipment – Ground sheet Camping Equipment – Sleeping bag Make sure that it is rated for extreme weather conditions and cold temperatures Camping Equipment – Sleeping pad Which will help you to keep warm Camping Equipment – Wateproof stuff sack Compression sack will do as an alternative Camping Equipment – Cooking stuff Dishes, utensils, large pot to melt the snow Camping Equipment – Wash cloth and dish towel Camping Equipment – Shovel Can be useful in many different ways Camping Equipment – Plastic garbage bags Leave nothing behind except your footprints Camping Equipment – Water bottles Camping Equipment – Cooking stove Make sure that it will operate efficiently in cold temperatures – and take plenty of fuel Camping Equipment – Lantern Plus lots of the right fuel Camping Equipment – Snow saw Camping Equipment – Cross country skis Optional – you should know whether you’re likely to need them Camping Equipment – Cross country ski poles If you need the skis, you’ll need the ski poles Camping Equipment – Ski boots If you need the skis and poles, you’ll also need the boots Camping Equipment – Soap For washing the dishes and utensils – make sure that it’s biodegradable Camping Equipment – Ice axe If applicable Camping Equipment – Crampons If applicable Camping Equipment – Avalanche transceiver Might save your life


Hiking boots Make sure that they are insulated, water resistant and well worn in – keeping your feet warm and dry is essential for cold weather hiking trips Footwear – Snow shoes Can make the going a little easier in places, and are actually great fun Footwear – Hiking sticks and poles I know that they’re not strictly footwear, but they can make the whole experience a little easier on the feet Footwear – Hiking socks Insulated, water proof if possible, layers, whatever your hiking boots will allow – and take plenty of spares Footwear – Extra laces That’s one thing duct tape can’t really handle, so take spare laces just in case


Sunglasses Are essential, the glare of the sun reflecting from the snow is very bright and very dangerous (that’s hoping you get some sunshine) Clothing – Hat Fleece or wool Clothing – Pants Fleece or wool are the best – quick drying is essential (snow is pretty wet stuff you know) Clothing – Fleece or wool vest Clothing – Shirts Long sleeved ones are best in the cold weather Clothing – Sweater Either fleece or wool will do Clothing – Underwear Clothing – Long underwear Clothing – Snow goggles In case you get caught in a blizzard – it does happen Clothing – Raingear To cover everywhere – that means hat, jacket and pants Clothing – Warm jacket Insulated down jackets are snug Clothing – Gloves and/or mittens With spares in case they get wet Clothing – Snow pants Clothing – Face mask Clothing – Sewing kit To make “on the spot” repairs

Personal stuff

Toothbrush Personal stuff – Toothpaste Personal stuff – Soap Biodegradable Personal stuff – Towel Quick drying hiking towels work well Personal stuff – Razor Personal stuff – Shaving foam Personal stuff – Deodorant Personal stuff – Moisturizer Optional Personal stuff – Hair brush / comb If you have any hair Personal stuff – Sunscreen SPF 30 minimum Personal stuff – Lip balm SPF 30 minimum

Other stuff

Camera With plenty of film, memory cards, batteries etc Other stuff – Video camera With plenty of film, memory cards, batteries etc Other stuff – Binoculars Other stuff – Radio Other stuff – Altimeter Optional, some watches have an altimeter built in to them which is a great idea for hiking