19th-20th June 2021

Everything you need to know before your walking challenge

A guide to everything you need to know about clothing and equipment in order to help you complete your walking challenge!

The kit outlined below is designed for a UK-based climate, US walking conditions may differ and therefore different equipment may be necessary.

When it comes to walking challenges, getting ready is half the fun! We’ve come up with a list of things to consider bringing with you if you take on any of our walking challenges, such as our virtual Snowdonia for Science!

  • Walking Shoes – These are the most important item. Your shoes need to be strong and sturdy to protect your ankles. Make sure you try your boots on in person before buying or wearing; they need to fit perfectly and everyone is different!
  • Walking Socks – If you have spent time and money on finding the perfect shoe, you don’t want to ruin it by not getting the perfect sock. You will need to wear walking socks and they should fit well inside your walking shoe!
  • Sports Leggings or Trousers – Stay away from cotton trousers or jeans, as these will get wet and heavy if it rains.
  • Thermal Top – This is a base layer and helps to keep your core temperature up. It should be a purpose made thermal underlay and therefore not made out of cotton which will allow your body to breath.
  • Sweatshirt or Fleece – Layers are essential. The weather at the start of the walk may not be the same weather at the end, so having warm layers to put on will help keep you going.
  • Waterproof Jacket – You need a lightweight but waterproof jacket. This is great for both the wind and the rain, and you can roll it up and put it in your bag so it is ready for when you need it.
  • Waterproof Trousers – These are a saving grace in a downpour and the weather is especially unpredictable when climbing up a mountain. You can put them on to keep your legs warm and dry.
  • Hat – Hypothermia can be a problem so be prepared. If walking in winter this is essential and you should bring a high-quality warm hat. If you are walking in the summer, a hat may not be essential but you can never be sure.
  • Gloves – Gloves are be important whatever the weather: you can buy lightweight gloves to help grip your walking poles and keep the chill off or in the winter you can wear thick thermal gloves to help keep your hands warm during the walk.
  • Walking Poles – These are not a necessity for all walks but when walking up a mountain like Snowdon they are essential as there are  steep sections and using a walking pole can make a massive difference.
  • Backpack – You need to have a big enough bag to fit everything in that you want to take on your walk, plus all the layers you aren’t wearing. It will need to be waterproof to keep all of your contents dry. You can buy rain covers for your backpack.

Now we have covered the main kit, you need to know what you’ll need in your backpack while on a walking challenge.

What to pack in your backpack?

  • Water – Have a large bottle that will keep you going for a few hours. There will always be places to top up water while you are walking. You can also use a hydration pack that are placed in your backpack.
  • Sun Cream –The higher you go, the closer you are to the sun, and therefore the more likely you are to burn. It may sound silly, but believe us, it may come in handy!
  • Blister Plasters – New shoes should be broken in before the walk, but always pack plasters just in case.
  • Snacks – Keeping up your energy is vitally important so pack small snacks that you can eat while walking.
  • Packed Lunch – You need to have a halfway stop during the day to completely refuel, so pack a lunch that is full of nutrients and energy.
  • Camera – Any walk can have stunning views, often when you least expect it, so don’t miss out on those amazing photos!
  • Phone – Ensure it is fully charged when you set off and will hold its charge through the walk. You can also add in the local mountain rescue service number so if you have any problems you can contact them.
  • Sunglasses – When walking in snow, it can be blinding so you will need strong sunglasses during the winter as well as the summer. The weather can change and you want to be able to see clearly whilst walking.
  • Torch – You never know what may happen so prepare for the unexpected! You could end up injured and/or lost and having to walk home later than planned in the dark, so pack it just in case!
  • Compass – This is needed in order to help you navigate, especially if the weather is bad, to ensure you are staying on the path and going the correct way. Make sure you also know how to use it before starting the walk.
  • Personal First Aid Kit – For any small cuts and grazes, or other minor injuries make sure you are prepared and are able to patch yourself up.
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