There is more to being a backpacker than just throwing some clothes in a bag and heading off into the sunset. To truly enjoy the backpacker lifestyle, it is essential to have some basic skills under your belt. These skills will not only make your travels more enjoyable, but they will also help you to meet new people and make new friends along the way.
This blog post will give you some essential skills all backpackers should know.
Top 6 Skills All Backpackers Should Know
1. How to Pack Light
Backpacking is all about minimalism. You want to travel light so you can move around quickly without worrying about carrying heavy bags. Packing light also means saving money on transport as you won’t have to pay for excess baggage. In addition, light packing gives you peace of mind since you won’t have to worry about your items being stolen.
To pack light, start by listing all the essential items for your trip. Take only the clothes and things you know you will use. Be ruthless in culling, and don’t pack anything you can live without. Finally, invest in multipurpose items such as a scarf that can double as a towel.
2. How to Navigate
Getting lost is part of the adventure while traveling, but sometimes it is not so fun. Learning how to read a map and compass will help you stay on track and find your way home – or to the next great adventure.
Navigating without a map also comes in handy. When in the wilderness, always take note of your surroundings and pay attention to landmarks. If you get lost, you’ll have a general idea of where you are and which direction you need to take.
3. How to Build a Shelter
In an emergency, or if caught in the wilderness without a tent, you need to know how to build a shelter. If you have a tarp, that’s great, but if not, you can use leaves, branches, and whatever else you can find to create a makeshift shelter.
4. How to Put on a Heavy Pack
Packing your backpack is an art and a science. You want to ensure you have all the gear you need, but you also don’t want to bring too much and end up lugging around a ton of extra weight.
When it comes time to put on your pack, there’s a right way to do it.
With the correct skillset, you can put on a heavy backpack without putting too much strain on your body. You can also travel more efficiently and comfortably.
5. Performing First Aid
No matter where you are in the world, accidents happen. As a backpacker, it’s essential to be prepared for any eventuality, including being able to perform first aid. From basic cuts and scrapes to more severe injuries, knowing how to treat them correctly can mean the difference between a quick recovery and a prolonged one.
6. Locating Water
One of the essential skills for any backpacker is the ability to find water. You can only go for a maximum of three days without water; even in that time frame, you will become severely dehydrated.
In hot climates, you can die within hours if you do not have access to water. Therefore, you must know how to find water while on the trail.