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4 Tools you may not think you need on an outdoor h...

4 Tools you may not think you need on an outdoor hike but will be glad you had

Going on an outdoor hike brings a lot of benefits. I’ve done a hiking trip in Pennsylvania a little while back, and I am still trying to find the time to go back for a sequel! Aside from the obvious health benefits it brings, people who like to go on outdoor hikes not only get to discover new places but also meet new friends while going on their adventures.

But like any adventure, an outdoor hike can be best enjoyed when it has been planned properly. Especially when the place is somewhere you’ve never been to, the better prepared you are, not only would it be more fun, but also safer for you or your companions if you have them.

There are many necessary tools that should be brought when going on a hike. Of course, you would need food and navigation supplies, but aside from that, you can also bring the following on your next outdoor hike. They may not seem like the typical choices, but they will come in handy in certain situations.

1. Notebook and pen – many bring this because they choose an outdoor hike as a time to reflect. Having a journal would be perfect. But even if you’re not the type to jot down your thoughts, it will come in handy. You can use it to write down important information about the path you are hiking on. You can also use it to jot down your coordinates. This way, when you are going home, you can avoid paths that may have obstacles such as a fallen tree or the like.

2. Splitting axe – this might be an unusual tool to bring to an outdoor hike, but a splitting axe can come in handy. If you need to make a campfire, it would be hard to make firewood with only a Swiss knife. You can also use it to cut down obstacles and the like. Just make sure that you know how to handle an axe and that you have protective gear with you so as to avoid any untoward incident. The best splitting axe would be the one that you are comfortable using. Since there are many choices available on the market, make sure that you canvass first before you choose to buy one.

3. Spare laces – you might never think of bringing spare laces, but can you imagine what it would be like to hike if one of your laces snap? It would definitely be uncomfortable and would result to you not enjoying your adventure. If you want something multi-purpose, you can pack a paracord instead. They can be used not only as a shoelace but even for making a shelter.

4. Duct tape – this would come in handy when you are going to build a shelter. A duct tape is easier to use than rope because it is an adhesive. But aside from that, you can also use it when you get blisters. Hiking can become very painful when you get blisters, and it rubs against something. Use duct tape so that your blisters will not rub against your socks or shoes.


Christine Buske is a former academic who left science at the bench, and now considers herself a woman in tech. She is a frequently invited speaker, and enjoys talking about career transformation (particularly leaving academia for the business world), tech, issues around women in tech, product management, agile, and outreach. She is a proud Canadian resident, and qualifies as a "serial expat".

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