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For adventure lovers, spring break is one of the best times to head out on the trail. It’s the perfect time for hikers and campers of all ages to start enjoying the outdoors again. After being cooped up over a long winter, it’s time for a change.
The thing is, no matter where you head, you need to pack the right items to enjoy the trip in the best possible way.
Before we start, let me add that the items you need will depend on the destination and period of travel. That said, there are a few items that are a must for any spring outdoor trip.
So here are the seven items that are a must-have for outdoor spring travel.
1. Essential Clothing
When you’re heading towards areas that experience heavy winter snowfall, expect the spring temperatures to get chilly too. So a quilted jacket is a must for heavy protection. Don’t forget to pack gloves and woolen socks either. A lightweight hoodie is a good choice for slightly warmer climates.
Spring weather can shift easily, so light shirts aren’t the best choice. Tees can be a good option as a base layer. You can also choose flex fabric pants that will provide the right level of warmth along with the right range of movement.
If you are planning for some strenuous outdoor activity, you’ll find the spring weather can heat you in no time. So a pair of shorts can be a good choice for letting your legs breathe.
2. Tents and Bags
The most essential item for the spring outdoor trip will be the tent. A lightweight 3-season tent will keep you sheltered from light snow or rain. For harsher weather conditions, use a 3+ season or an extended season tent. Make sure to carry a rain fly as protection against sudden showers.
It’s best to pick a sleeping bag rated for 20 to 40 degrees. A durable design will allow you to sleep comfortably on boulder fields or in a forest. Also, waterproof down and synthetic fillings are better options for handling wet conditions.
We also recommend carrying a good quality sleeping pad. An additional layer between the ground and the sleeping bags adds that extra bit of comfort.
3. A Backpacking Stove
The spring melt may not allow you to gather a steady supply of dry firewood. So a lightweight and efficient backpacking stove is the best option for cooking after a long day of hiking. There are various options including BioLite camp stoves, alcohol stoves, and solar stoves.
However, liquid fuel stoves are the best picks for camping in low temperatures. For spring outdoor trips, consider a stove designed for operating in windy weather. You can also pick a stove with an integrated container for boiling water.
Other than that, pack the right volume of fuel along with a lighter or waterproof matchbox.
4. Solar Phone Charger
If you’re heading away from civilization for a few days, make sure to pack a solar phone charger with foldable panels. While power banks can run out of juice, this gadget will allow you to harness the unlimited potential of solar energy.
Quite simply, a solar charger with multiple USB ports is the perfect solution for powering up your phone, tablet, or camera. Remember, a charger with a higher wattage will cost more. But it’s ideal for power-hungry devices. Also, the more amps it has, the faster the devices will charge.
You can consider picking a solar charger with integrated batteries. Once the batteries are charged, it can power up your phone even at night. Also, pick a rugged and durable charger that can withstand outdoor use.
5. A Multipurpose Knife
Needless to say, a knife is a very effective tool for campers. It can help you in a variety of situations, from opening a bottle of beer to cutting rope. From the best hunting knife to the no-nonsense pocket knife, there are plenty of options to choose from. Note, each type of knife is designed for different tasks. So you need to choose wisely.
An outdoor knife can be a fixed blade or a folding blade type. Among the many blade types, a drop-point blade can be a good choice due to its versatility. Besides, make sure to choose a full tang knife as it allows you to use more force.
When it comes to knife materials, carbon steel is a strong and durable option. However, stainless steel offers more resistance to rusting.
You can’t overlook the side effects of the UVA and UVB rays in spring. So whether you’re heading for the mountains or the ocean, don’t forget to pack your favorite sunscreen. A sunscreen contains chemical filters or active mineral ingredients like zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. They act as a barrier to the harmful rays of the sun.
Ideally, sunscreen should have an SPF value of 30 or more. Sunscreens with SPF 30 can block around 97 percent of the UVB rays. Keep in mind that it’s necessary to reapply sunscreen after every two hours. If you are swimming, make sure to reapply it every time you come out of the water.
Even if you have oily or sensitive skin, don’t skip on sunscreen application. Try picking non-comedogenic or oil-free sunscreens. In case you have dry skin, pick a sunscreen containing hydrating agents.
7. A First-Aid Kit
Apart from any prescription medications, a basic first aid kit is essential for an outdoor trip in any season. Here are a few items that are a must in any first-aid kit.
- Antibacterial ointment
- Bandages and gauze pads
- Pain relief medication
- Antiseptic wipes
- Antihistamine for allergic reactions
- Safety pins
- Loperamide tablets for emergency treatment of diarrhea
- Rehydration salts
- A lip salve
Apart from these, make sure to carry hand sanitizers. Also, carrying a thermometer, scissors, and a small mirror in the kit is a good idea. With the spring blooms, there can be bugs. So a bug-repellent can come in handy.
Beyond that, make sure to seek medical help for any injury or illness that can’t be covered by these basic medications.
There you have it. These 7 vital items are a must for any exciting outdoor spring travel trip.
Traveling light can be fun and comfortable. Still, it’s better to be safe than sorry when heading outdoors for your next adventure. So plan well and strike the right balance while packing.