Updated: Aug 27, 2021
A rundown of the small things that make a massive difference while on an expedition.
On my last post I blogged about my favourite foods to eat while on the trail and I had a lot of fun writing it. So I thought that I would maintain that vibe for my next post. So without further ado, let's talk about things that make me happy while out in the woods and could make you happy to!
1. Under Armour
Let's face it. Everyone has different opinions as to what you should wear while hiking but I think we can all agree that cotton is a no no. It's heavy, makes you sweat quicker and before you know it you've got a sticky top with huge sweat stains up your back and under the arms.
That's why I can't live without a good piece of Under Armour. It's versatile all year round, is quick drying and combats sweat. I like to think about it like the chainmail's that the knights used to wear under their breastplate That means if you like your cotton top, with that cool design on it, you can simply wear it over your Under Armour. Done.
I like to carry at least two on me and change top once a week... But one last piece of advice- Always order a size up.
2. Cargo Convertibles
The amount of times I have been out hiking and the amount of comments my cargo convertibles fetch. Since watching old adventure movies when I was younger, I fell in love with how aesthetically pleasing cargo wear looks. Not only this but the multitude of pockets they have is definitely worth mentioning as well.
Then someone put two and two together and came up with the cargo convertibles. Getting warm down there? Simply unzip and your good to go. I am aware that sounds wrong in its own way but that's why we are talking about the zip below the knee.
The only issue is that there is that awkward moment when you have to stop and unlace your boots to get the trouser legs on and off.
3. A Comfy Mattress
If you're new to hiking or camping and you're reading this then don't do what I did when I started and that is to try and persevere with a cardboard thin sleeping mat. Instead, find your nearest camping store, or go online, and fork out a bit of money for something comfy. Even better if you can get it pack size.
Now, a few months back I was reading a forum on Facebook on the discussion of how you should pack these and I was surprised by the amount of people that commented that they go through the hassle of neatly rolling and folding these back into their case. I mean, it really is down to personal preference but there is nothing wrong with stuffing. Right?
4. The Motivational Playlist
Generally, I am against wasting the charge on your mobile device, especially on big game hikes and considering that there is nothing better than switching it off to enjoy the beautiful scenery around you. Ok Boomer.
But sometimes you've just got to put the tunes on. Doing a huge ascent is like doing a tough work out at the gym, you're feeling fatigued, ready to jack it in, and then all of a sudden Survivor's Eye of the Tiger comes on and you're Rocky Balboa.
That said, you could always play Guile's theme from Street Fighter like I did one time. Only I was playing it on full volume without my ear phones in. Let's just say I attracted some looks.
5. A Good Book
My last luxury, and perhaps the most nerdiest to some people, is a good book. As I mentioned earlier, saving charge on your mobile is imperative, so in terms of distracting yourself before you go to bed, to me, this is the best solution.
Now, I have been reading avidly since I was 8 and have read a lot, but since we only talk about all things adventure in this blog, I have to recommend Wilbur Smith. He has been my favourite author for two years now and I still haven't devoured all his Courtney or Ballantyne novels.
But if adventure fiction is not your cup of tea and you would prefer something a little more real then autobiographies of current or past explorers are always good to get your teeth sunk into. I personally recommend Levinson Wood.
And that wraps up my top 5 luxury list for today. What luxury can you not live without while out in the woods? Be sure to comment below!