Trekking is different from hiking in that people are not supposed to rely on cars or other modes of transport. However, trekking can be extremely tiring, and a small miscalculation in planning can ruin the trip easily.
Usually, there aren’t many stores around outdoor areas where most people trek and hike, so running out of supplies is arguably the worst scenario that can happen, especially food and drinking water. Hopefully, making a contingency plan in order to avoid this particular situation shouldn’t be hard if you follow our simple tips:
Research the area for the nearest shops or gas pumps
Before you begin your trekking trip, you should scout the surrounding area. Use Google maps (or any similar app) to search for any gas stations or shops nearby. Even though they may not have everything you need for your trekking trip, at least you’ll be able to resupply your food and water stocks.
You may want to take the time to search for the nearest hospitals, villages, and lodges/hotels too in case the trip gets tiring or someone in your trekking party gets hurt. Memorize these locations or draw a map yourself; if possible, download the map on your phone, or simply take a screenshot.
The car will be an invaluable tool for visiting these locations without overexerting yourself, as these spots may be hundreds of miles away.
Bring spare clothes and emergency gear
Every seasoned trekker watch weather forecast and plans accordingly if they announce it’s going to rain. However, sometimes the forecast is wrong by a day or two; sometimes we simply forget to turn the TV on due to the excitement of the upcoming trip and all the tasks that need to be done.
On another hand, the sun may be burning a bit more brightly than you anticipated, and the temperatures may become almost unbearable, leading you to sweat profusely.
Since trekkers typically pack light, you don’t want to compensate the room for extra food (or any other essential item) with spare trekking clothes. Even if you manage to pack everything properly without adding too much weight to your backpack, some of your trekking companions may have forgotten to bring their own.
Having spare clothes and emergency gear in your car’s trunk can save the trip, as staying too long in wet clothes can cause a series of health problems.
Pack up non-perishable food in the trunk
Instead of relying on the nearby shops being open (if any even exist), the best way to prepare your food stocks is to fill your trunk with non-perishables. Parking near the shade is optimal, although there’s no guarantee you’ll find a good spot. A good thing to have to make sure the food is even more protected is to store it in a mini-fridge.
You can bring anything you want basically, but foods such as granola bars, whole-grain tortillas, and dried fruits or vegetables are your best options.
There’s a chance that retreating back to your car will take more time than going to the nearest shop. However, energy management is very important for trekking, and risking the trip to a shop that may not be open isn’t as smart as investing an hour or two. Gas stations usually work 24/7, so if they’re closer than your car, it’s probably better to go there first.
Have a first-aid kit ready in the car
No matter how cautious a person is, accidents are sometimes unavoidable. A clumsy trip can result in a broken leg, but even the most harmless bruise can lead to infection quickly. While carrying a full first-aid kit in your trekking backpack may not be ideal, you should still have at least a few bandages and disinfectants.
However, if you happen to run out of these items and there are still people in your group that require immediate treatment, having a first-aid kit in your car will greatly help.
Make sure to top the tank off
Whether you’re pacing from one shop to another or you may have gotten lost in a location with bad reception, you’ll need to pay attention to the amount of fuel you have. Some people waste gallons of fuel searching for a good drop-off point, and that’s a very normal situation if your trekking destination is deep into the wilderness.
Make sure to top the tank off before you embark on your journey, especially if there aren’t any gas stations in the location’s vicinity.
If your trekking convoy consists of a few cars, it may be smart to have a topped canister in your trunk as well, in case some of your friends didn’t take the necessary precautions. Hitchhiking is an option, but you’ll have to leave your car, so it’s better to come prepared.
Bring a portable power generator
Under the premise that you’ve run out of water, food, and fuel and are in need of a tow, you’ll want to use your phone to contact the nearest agency. However, if your battery runs dry, your options will be severely limited.
Having a portable generator will allow you to recharge your phone wherever you are; additionally, it can be used to create a makeshift camp with adequate lighting if you have to spend the night in the thick of the woods.
Have a spare tire and make sure your car is insured
You should think in advance about how you’re going to get back home. Trekking can be pretty draining, and if you’ve traveled long distances to get to your location, the trip back is likely to be even more fatiguing and challenging.
It’s better to be safe than sorry, so you may want to insure your car prior to hitting the road. The tiredness from trekking or even the rush for supplies if you haven’t scanned the area properly can lead you to make simple mistakes in your driving; furthermore, you can’t account for other drivers who may be tired as well (or even intoxicated).
We hope that this guide was useful to you and that you have learned something new today on how to prepare for trekking in terms of key supplies. Make sure you are staying safe in these times we are all going through and have a good one, guys!