Essential Gear Advice
The trekker’s essential gear list
Advised by the founding members of Amazing Trekkers Club, these are the minimal 14 essential items you’ll need in your backpack before an arduous uphill journey.
This is the number one essential item on our ATC Founder’s lists of essential items!
Did you know that hiking socks have cushioned bits for your toes and heels to protect you from blisters? That might come in handy when you’re putting one foot in front of the other 4000m above sea level.
We also advise you to get a pair in a high wicking material, which keeps your feet dry and warm. There are also hiking socks of different thickness available, which you can choose from depending on the climate of the area you will be in.
Thermal technology has advanced since the days of Game of Thrones and we don’t have to wear fur to keep warm. A light weight insulated jacket can keep you warm without weighing you down.
Sun protection for face and lips
‘What a beautiful day on the mountain! Oh wait, my face hurts.’ The closer you are to the equator, and the higher the altitude, the stronger the sun. Don’t forget a good sunscreen with a strong broad spectrum SPF to protect yourself from a nasty sunburn. Especially the nose.
No one wants to carry a flashlight when they’re hands are already full, especially after being exhausted from the last thousand miles. Headlamps are useful when light is scarce under heavy foliage or at night.
And that includes toilet paper. It doesn’t sound too glamorous but you’ll need it up in the mountains, especially when you can’t find a mountain hut or even if you do and they don’t have what you need in times of ‘emergency’. Take the cardboard roll out of your toilet paper when packing to save space. Facial cleansing wipes are also useful for the ladies to bring along when hiking where water is precious.
A good, light weight camera
Does your iPhone 5 do the summit justice? You will definitely remember the experience, but take a good souvenir home bring a camera that can handle the elements and And you get to share it with your family and friends! Don’t forget to take a selfie on the summit!
At some point, you will crave for an energy hit or just need that extra boost of energy to keep you going. That is where snacks come in handy. With all those calories you’re burning, it won’t hurt to bring a little bit of chocolate.
It can get cold up in the mountain, so please do pack your warm clothes. At the base of the mountain where it may not be that cold, a high wicking material is recommended to kick away moisture and sweat for comfort. For those cold nights, pack some fleece and pants that are weatherproof and, most importantly, waterproof to keep you dry.
Matches, lighters, fire starters - you never know when you’ll need a little heat. We recommend to bring waterproof fire starting materials. But if you really want to get your Jane of the Jungle on, get a dry piece of wood, some tinder, and start banging rocks together.
Swiss Army Knife
A Swiss Army knife is small and light lifesaver, perfect to bring along on your hike. It’s also extremely useful, whether to cut bandages, twigs or to use as a eating utensil. You can also use it to peel the skin off fruits along the way and, may I dare say, to file your nails with when they chip!
A quick-dry microfiber towel is a must. Cotton towels will only weigh you down wet or dry. Most importantly, this is essential for an unexpected waterfall or clear water lake you may have stumbled upon.
Water Bottle with filter
Getting one that filters on its own is absolutely essential for a long trip where you don’t want to see your water levels go down like batteries on your phone. If you don’t have a water self-filtering bottle, consider purification tablets.
Bug spray and afterbite
Especially in the tropics, there is nothing bugs love more than a hot and sweaty human to feast on. Bring strong insect repellent or mosquito patches so you don’t spend your trek itching. We recommend coconut oil as it both repels bites and soothes itch.
Yes it looks like you're always expecting snow, but walking poles are totally worth packing. Poles can help reduce up to 25 per cent of the compressive force on your knees. Whether on flat ground or up steep slopes,poles act as two extra points of contact to the ground and can help you maintain your balance in difficult terrains such as slippery bog bridges, river crossings, and tree root-strewn trails.
The best part? Having something to lean on in the middle of no where when you have ten extra kilos on your back.
The Right Attitude
The other one on the top of the list from our founders besides socks is this! According to our founding member, Lynne Atherton, her two most important things are thermals and friends. And then according to our founder, Hazleen Panayiotou, "stay focussed, support one another and get advice from those who had done the climb. Research, prep well, enjoy the trek and go for a mountain expedition with good friends, the right attitude and be mentally and physically prepared."