Ten Go-Pack Essentials

Living in the Western part of the U.S. gives us a lot of opportunities to go play outside. Whether in Colorado, Arizona, Utah, Nevada, or any of our other amazing states, you want to be able to hit the road for a day on the trails at a moment’s notice. To do this, you should keep a “Go Bag” stocked with what you need for a day hiking our beautiful trails. Here are ten essentials to have in your Go bag, along with a few add-ons for those of you who take your two- or four-legged children with you.

backpack

  1. Navigation
    • Map
    • Compass
    • GPS
  2. Sun Protection
    • Sunscreen
    • Lip Balm
    • Sunglasses
    • Hat
  3. Insulation
    • Jacket
    • Vest
    • Pants
    • Long Underwear
    • Gloves
    • Hat
  4. Illumination
    • Flashlight / Headlamp
    • Extra batteries
  5. First Aid Kit
  6. Fire
    • Matches or lighter
    • Waterproof container
    • Fire starter (for emergencies)
  7. Tools
    • Knife or Multi-tool
    • Duct tape
  8. Nutrition
    • Extra food
  9. Hydration
    • Water
    • Water filter or other treatment system
  10. Emergency Shelter
    • Tent, tarp or reflective blanket

kids camping

For your two-legged Child – pack extra sun protection, insulation, food and water. Please remember, kids can get dehydrated faster than adults, so make sure there is plenty of water for everyone on the trip. A bottle of Pedialite is a good idea to help with hydration if you will be out in hotter weather, or for a long day hike.

dog backpack

 

For your four-legged child(ren) – pack food, extra water, and collapsible bowls. Also, if you will be encountering rough terrain, it’s a good idea to carry foot protection for your furry friend. (Of course I’m focusing on dogs here, but if you are a rare breed who has somehow taught their cat to hike, I imagine they would need the same supplies.) Pedialite can also be used to hydrate dogs. Check with your vet on how much to give your dog – depending on its size. I always carry a small bottle when on longer hikes, or hikes on very warm days.

While the outdoors is an amazing place to be, it helps to be prepared, even if you’re just headed out for an afternoon, as Mother Nature can be a fickle woman. Always carry phone (or radio if you will be out of cell phone range) so you can reach someone in case of emergency. Always let someone know where you are going and around what time you will return. One things I always take, and is a necessity for me, is a camera – may not be a great survival tool, but Mother Nature always provides some amazing moments to capture (sometimes I even include my dog and kid). Be prepared, with knowledge and supplies, but most of all, have fun. Take advantage of what these states have to offer – no matter where you go, you will never see the same thing twice, so keep a To-Go bag and head out whenever you get the chance.