Yesterday I went out for a hike with a great group of folks. It was a pretty unsettled day weather wise to say the least! I woke up early at 6:30am and it was pouring rain, looked like a full blown autumn day outside.
Photo Credit: dok1
I got up and started preparing for the hike ahead, packing some gear and stuff into my daypack.
A Truly Mixed Bag!
At about 7:30am, I looked out of the kitchen window and noticed the sun was poking its head out from behind the clouds. I started thinking that maybe it might even brighten up for the day ahead. The weather forecast wasn't much use, it just said it would be unsettled with sunny spells and rain.
We weren't all meeting at the meeting point till 10:45am so I didn't have to hit the road till 9:45am. Therefore I had some spare time to do a few errands.
I needed some bread and a few other bits and pieces to make a sandwich to take on the hike so I went to the store around 8:30am. When I went outside I noticed that the rain had dried off and it was now very, very windy but still quite sunny with a mish mash of threatening clouds in the sky.
I returned from the store, got my sandwich ready, finished packing up and set out at 9:45am sharp. On the drive down it started to pelt rain again and by the time I got to the meeting point it was teeming but the wind had died down. It was like vertical water streams coming from the sky!
It was a truly mixed bag of weather indeed! So, on with the Rain jacket and we set off in the deluge on the hike.
On (and Off) with the Rain Gear
And so it continued throughout the day. Pouring rain for a half hour; then sunny warm and bright; then very windy again (lift you off your feet windy when we reached the summit and were exposed); then pouring rain again, etc.
The temperature was generally pretty warm but with either the sun shining down or the wind biting through you at the top of the mountain, it ranged considerably.
Throughout the day we must have added and removed gear nearly ten times! Rain jacket on, then off; hiking fleece on then off; waterproof trousers on then off and hiking pant bottoms detached into shorts; gaiters on and off, etc., etc.
The hike was great and we did about 14 miles across a few peaks. We all had a wonderful day. It really hit home to me again the importance of always having the right hiking gear and clothing on, as well as with you when you set out on your hikes.
Weather in the hills and mountains is prone to rapid change. If we hadn't had the right hiking gear with us on the hike, we would have been soaked like a wet teabag from the rain and our sweat. For example, with the wrong hiking shirt or tee on it would have eventually been like wearing a cold wet towel, a sure-fire ticket to a miserable hiking experience!
The main point of this post is to simply reiterate how important it is for you to have the right and best hiking gear with you when you hit the trail. If you don't, you could be pretty miserable pretty quickly and even get into difficulty very quickly should conditions turn against you.
Have you had any bad experiences while hiking with the wrong hiking gear? Let us know in the comments section below, we’d love to hear about it!