SOCKS, seriously. You’ll be on your feet and using them loads. Always pack a spare pair. You can use them as mitts, to filter water, stop bleeding (with the elasticated band), to support a damaged knee… You get the picture right? They are useful, and if nothing else use them as sock puppets! Perfect on adventure down days!!
Wide neck clear bottle, again so many uses! Yes for water, but the better bottles can take boiled water too, if your not too weirded out you could use it as a wee bottle (guys) you don’t have to get out the sleeping bag/tent useful for mountain/high altitude antics.. You can even tie string around it throw it in a river to try and catch fish….
Para cord, seriously do I need to go into its possible applications? It weights sod all, takes up no room! Why go without it?
Knife! REALLY? Comes in super handy for opening your M&S sandwich on cold mornings, or spreading hummus on your gluten free focaccia..
Map/guide of the area this can come in many forms, iPhone, OS map, GPS or route guide. Always best to carry a paper back up with the ever growing tech thats available these days!
Hat, stopping for rest or to figure out your route. Keep the warmth in, has other uses too. Keeping bum dry if you need to sit on a cold/wet surface. Can be used to soak up/stop bleeding. A simple beenie can be a game changer.
Head torch/light, these pack down to nothing and have the obvious uses! (No, I trust you I’m not explaining!) DON’T SHINE IT YOUR EYES!!
Leave something behind, a day, weekend or week. Plan, tell people about the plan.
For days walking, time left car where your going, route, how many, age,health conditions, phone and time due back. This vital info can save time and lives. Pop it on your dash board so cars left late in the day or over night can be easily checked. And no, thieves won’t care, they’ll steal your stuff regardless…
Same again for weekends, no hard with giving this info to rangers or informing mountain rescue they’d rather know and advise than deploy a team of 16 people, put them at risk because you didn’t plan.
Weeks & further.
Expedition plans are not daft and stupid, basic routes, hospitals, food points, shops for spares/villages and possible places to stay and details of possible extraction points (transport out!) do this on a simple day by day basis and cover basics such as important medical info (in language of country your in) do plans for estimated daily distances and for worst case (target 80 miles, bad day option of say 60)
Yes I know there is also visa and many other things to think about too! I’m Trying to help you think of basics…
Skills, carry those. If your going to plan a trip include cost of training. Map reading, first aid, a bush craft weekend, what ever it is get skills. Better to look stupid in a safe place where your their to learn than in dangerous place where it could go horribly wrong…
Carry flipping kit appropriate for the adventure you are doing!! Get comfortable with leaving stuff behind, packing too much can be the downfall of a trip too. But do remember this is a skill, knowing what you can do without isn’t pot luck, it’s time taken gaining experience.
I’d love to know what you’d carry, what you’d leave behind, what you’d take! I know this has some seriously obvious items missed off like iPad (joke!) I mean first aid kit, but no point taking one without the skills to use it, is their?
Happy & safe adventuring!