As a company of trekkers, our experience has shown that there are just some pieces of kit you should never leave home without. Many Explore staff have recently returned from treks around the world and, here, some of them share their top tips for things to ensure you have with you on your next trek.
Michelle Laverick, Head of Marketing
Most recent trek: Just back from Nepal.
Michelle's must-have piece of kit is a good headtorch.
"You must have a headtorch – especially useful for those summit nights when it’s dark and you need to light your way to the top. I prefer Petzl, with an LED light and various settings of brightness; also one that tilts down so you don’t shine it in your fellow trekkers’ faces when you’re eating dinner in the mess tent. Headtorches are also very good for night toilet visits – hands free! Wet wipes are really useful too."
Jenny Hendry, Head of Tailormade
Most recent trek: Successfully climbed Kilimanjaro
Keeping hydrated on treks is a must, and Jenny has a favourite piece of kit for doing so.
“I’d recommend taking a water bottle with a hoser – meaning you can sip water as you trek, providing a constant source of hydration; vital at altitude and on any trekking holiday. Buy an insulator to stop it freezing on cold summit nights (I got to within 200m of the summit of Kilimanjaro before exposure to the cold night air started to turn water to ice). A lot of rucksacks have a special pocket at the back to put the water bottle in and a hole at the top of the bag to slip the hose through. I prefer the Platypus brand: a great piece of kit!”
James Adkin, Product Manager
Most recent trek: Fresh from an autumn trek in Spain’s Picos de Europa.
The bane of a trekkers life is blisters - or any foot problems - James has a method to ensure this is never an issue for him.
“You need to look after your feet and prevent blisters (a blister means you haven’t taken care of your feet and it is too late to fix). Once your boots are worn in it shouldn’t be an issue, but when they’re new I swear by zinc oxide tape – or any strong material adhesive tape. I tape up my feet each morning in the places I know that I would normally get hot spots and blisters. Even on long and tough treks I never get a blister. A fine and lightweight pair of inner socks also works a treat to transfer the heat away from your skin onto the material.”