With summer right around the corner, many of us are looking forward to hiking and camping without the need to weigh ourselves down with waterproofs, down jackets, and heavy-duty sleeping bags.
After all, what could be better than combining the benefits of spending time in nature with a boost of vitamin D?!
The trouble is, hiking in hot weather might not be quite as idyllic for certain parts of the country as it is for others. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t still find ways to enjoy the outdoors and stay cool while you do.
Keep reading to find out how to beat the summer heat on your next hiking trip!
Set Out Early
The hottest part of the day is usually around 3 pm. The earlier you head out, the easier it’ll be to avoid hiking when the sun is at its strongest. Finishing your hike before the summer heat gets too much often makes for a more pleasant, safer trek, and gives you more time to recover and rehydrate afterward.
Seek the Shade
You might know a stunning trail that leads to a refreshing waterfall at the end. The only problem is, there is almost no shade along the route. As tempting as it might be to attempt this in summer, you should save these kinds of open trails for fall.
Summer hiking trips are better suited to shady trails that won’t leave you exposed to the sun’s rays for too long. Make sure to plan your route so that you can stay cool in the shade of trees and other structures as much as possible.
Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate
To avoid heading into your hiking trip already in a state of depletion, you should drink plenty of water the day before your warm weather hike. As for the trek itself, make sure to bring enough water to keep you going for the length of the trail and more. Sweating out in the summer heat also means that you’ll lose electrolytes and important minerals so you might also want to take electrolyte supplements and salt with you.
Wear Loose, Light Clothing
You should always choose breathable, quick-drying fabrics in light colors for hiking. Nylon and polyester are the best choices as they’re affordable and efficient. And, while you might think that vests and shorts are best for warm weather hikes, the added coverage of long sleeves and pants are better for protecting you from the sun.
Pack Warm Weather Essentials
You might be able to forgo the down jacket but packing light isn’t an option in summer. As well as plenty of water, you’ll need to take high SPF sunscreen, a hat, sunglasses, and insect repellent. It’s also a good idea to get this anti chafing stick to help ward off uncomfortable rubbing and irritation while you’re walking.
How to Stay Cool Hiking in Hot Weather
The summer heat can soon get the best of you if you head out unprepared on a hot weather trek.
But with these hiking tips to guide you, it should now be a lot easier to know how to stay cool while you have fun in the great outdoors.
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