The most-seasoned and savviest backpackers know the things to do and stuff to bring. The moment they have a destination in mind, their inner backpacking guru guides them in the process—starting from the itinerary to the contents of the backpack and then up to the travel itself. However, not everyone can master this so-called art of backpacking, since it takes thousands of miles of adventure and lots of mistakes along the way. One favorite destination for local and foreign backpackers is the Appalachian Mountains: with peaks of varied difficulty, lush and verdant forests, and trails that stretch for miles. If you are mulling on trekking the Appalachians this season, you might want to heed these backpacking tips.
Book as early as possible—then verify later
The first thing you have to do when planning a trip is to always book your accommodations first. While some might say that arranging your transportation should come first, it is better to secure your lodging first since there are many transportation options to choose from. Reserve your accommodation weeks before you go there, then verify your reservation one week before you embark on your journey to avoid mishaps. While the hotels and lodging there are not as fabulously modern and swanky like the Aria in Las Vegas, the lodgings near the Appalachians are sure-fit for many backpackers: thrifty, cozy, and eco-friendly. You can scour the Internet for hundreds of hotels and lodgings to look for that perfect bedroom that will make you feel like home.
Secure Your Funding
Unfortunately, while traveling is a perfect example of freedom, you just can’t escape the clutch of money. Simply put, you need some sort of funding to embark on any excursion—big or small. Naturally, saving is the most ideal and convenient methods of obtaining adequate travel funds. Aside from that, you could sell any unused items that currently reside in your home. What about your tax refund? In a lot of cases, most folks get at least a few hundred bucks back if they’re lucky. Not only that, but most tax preparation firms offer some type of free tax prep (usually an efile). I always paid someone to do my taxes until I heard that. It got me thinking, “I’d probably get more money should I decide to e-file next year.” Definitely something to consider. From there, you could always opt for a credit card that rewards you with travel incentives (points, miles, gear, etc.) in exchange for you using the card.
Pack light and pack wisely
Adventure is one-part traveling and one-part preparing; much of the latter is consumed by packing bags. There are many ways to beef up your packing skills, thus allowing you to pack lighter and more efficiently. For starters, you can use rubber bands to roll your clothes instead of just stuffing in your rucksack. Another tip for packing lightly is getting convertible clothing such as travel trousers that can be converted to shorts since it saves space. When travelling with gadgets, you should opt for devices that charge via the same USB cord, such as the Kindle, cameras that charge via USB, and many more. Finally, do not—under any circumstances—bring towels. All hotels have towels in their rooms, and it takes up much space.
Get an “all-in-one gadget”
Getting a gadget that can serve as a mobile phone, GPS tracker, compass, throwing weapon and grappling hook is a must when you travel to the wild. Aside from being multi-functional, these phones are also reinforced to withstand the most extreme situations. There are rugged phones built for the kill such the ones made by Sonim, which are manufactured specifically for rescuers, rangers, and people out in the wild. Also, there are much-cheaper Android-powered smartphones that can also serve the same purpose but aren’t as powerful as those rugged phones.