Backpacking Checklist for Beginners 

With travel opening back up through the backend of the pandemic, there has never been a more enticing time to go backpacking. There is a wide variety of items you’ll need when backpacking, for a variety of different purposes. However, overpacking is also one of the mistakes every solo traveler should avoid. In this article, we’ll be going over the different genres of items, and the items themselves. This will ensure that you’ll be perfectly equipped for your next backpacking trip! Without further delay, we will jump straight into it, with the necessary emergency equipment for backpacking. 


List of Explained Items 

  • Emergency gear is vital when considering backpacking. Yes, you’d hope you would never have to use it. That being said, you’ll be thankful you have it if you do get in an emergency. Below we have listed some of the essential emergency gear you will need if backpacking, alone especially. 
  • A compass to tell the directions of where you are located. 
  • A map of the area that you will be traveling within.
  • A first aid kit. 
  • If you have not gotten the ability to filtrate your water, then bringing iodine tablets for water filtration is vital. 
  • A sturdy pocket knife. 
  • A waterproof poncho to protect you from any extreme weather conditions that may arise. 
  • An EpiPen or similar pens to protect you from anything you may be allergic to in the wild. 
  • If you are going to an area where wild bears and snakes are known to inhabit, then keeping the necessary tools to prevent emergencies involving these animals (bear spray and snake bite kits) will prove massively important to keeping you alive. 

Necessary Items Required When Backpacking 


The emergency items were created to be used only in the unlikely event that an emergency occurs. However, the items in this list are items that you will be making use of throughout the entirety of your backpacking trip regardless of the circumstances you find yourself in. Below we have gone through each item in more comprehensive detail. 



Walking for extended periods on rough terrain is more tiring than you would imagine. This is combined with the additional weight you will be carrying on the back of all your items. This is why comfortable and sturdy boots are massively important. The type of boots you will look for will depend on you and the climate of the area you will be backpacking within. That being said, even just having any sort of boots will prove to be a difference-maker in getting you through your backpacking trip comfortably. 


Quality Headwear

If you are going to be backpacking at night, or camping, then you will find the temperatures at night, especially at certain times of the year, will be paralyzingly cold. The body heat you lose from your head is somewhere between 7 and 10 percent. You’ll thank yourself for having a quality hat when temperatures start to dip.


Tent and Sleeping Bag 

Once again, if you’re going to be sleeping out in the area you’re backpacking, then a tent and a sleeping bag are going to be required. The tent you choose is going to depend on whether or not you are backpacking alone. Both the tent and a sleeping bag of your choice are going to massively depend upon your specific needs. 


Stove and Utensils 

These days you can find simple and compact portable stoves in most utility stores. Having a stove can not only be vital in terms of getting food cooked, but it can also prove to be important if you need to filter water. As well as a stove, you’ll need utensils to cook and eat with too. 



The importance of this item cannot be understated, and we do not think it would be. This is the piece of gear that you’re going to rely upon to carry every item you have with you. When traveling between 1 to 4 days, the backpack you’ll most likely need on average will be between 50 and 70 liters in size. However, once again, the choice of a backpack will largely depend upon you. But having a quality and almost perfectly designed bag for your trip is going to be the cornerstone of how well your backpacking adventure goes. 



There are far too many items to list in comprehensive detail, so here are just some of the other items you will require on your backpacking trip. 

  • Sunscreen
  • Lighters
  • Headlamp
  • Non-perishable food
  • Water storage container 
  • Water filter


There you have it. That is our list of all the emergency and necessary items you’ll require when setting out on your backpacking trip. You would hope to not have to make use of the emergency items on this list, but they are just as important as the necessary items all the way.


We hope this list has helped you better understand the preparation that you will have to go on your backpacking trip before you set out on your adventure.


So, where are you heading?

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