Walking & Hiking Route Search

Walking & Hiking Route Search

Walking Across Europe is superb so get on your walking boots to see the region at its very best and really get away from it all.


Equipment

Waterproof clothing

waterproof

Weather in the mountains can be unpredictable, especially in the Alps, so dress in layers and bring waterproof clothing.

Put on a waterproof jacket and over-trousers to keep the rain off and keep the wind out. These two things will really keep you warm and comfortable when you are out walking.

Waterproof jackets, sometimes called raincoats, are made from many different fabrics, starting from, essentially a plastic bag, to specially woven fabrics. The most common will be a coated fabric, and the coating will vary in levels of breathability from nothing to a high level of breathability. If you see a sign PU on the coatings it means that it’s not breathable.

Walking Poles / Trekking Poles

poles

You might not see the difference between the Nordic Walking poles and Trekking Poles, but their design and purpose of usage differentiate significantly.

The general purpose of trekking poles is hiking. They are designed for varied terrain, mountains and hills. Use poles behind the body in a pushing action when you go uphill. This will increase muscle in the back recruitment and emphasize power and endurance. Lengthen poles and use them in front of the body in a “checking” action when you go downhill. In this way they are extraordinarily beneficial for achieving and maintaining mobility.

Nordic Walking poles are designed for exercise, health, well-being and fitness. They are usually used on a flat terrain or gently rolling hills. During your walk, use poles beside and behind the body in a pushing action. The right walking is when the stride lengthens and spinal rotation are performed. In this case, more muscles are recruited,  and perceived exertion is lowered due to usage of more muscles. Contrary to Trekking poles, Nordic Walking Poles are not adjusted as the terrain is less varied.

Rucksack / Daypack

Daypacks may look the same at first glance but actually they have lots of functional differences.

Although you do not want to leave any necessary equipment behind, you do not want to overload your back with an excruciating weight either. For day walks, a small backpack (i.e. 25 to 35 litres in size) should suffice. If organization is important to you, think about a panel-loading daypack. Fully opened, one panel falls away like a flap and makes easy to load and rummage through when you’re looking for something.

back

Top-loading rucksacks are simpler in design and a little lighter than panel loaders of a comparable size. They usually close with a drawstring and are easier to overstuff when needed. This is valuable to climbers who carry a lot of gear during the approach but don’t want to climb with a larger pack. However, organizing and locating gear in a top loader can be a challenge. You have to think very good before packing things which you’ll need less at the bottom of top-loading rucksack. You’ll be wearing your rucksack a lot, so be sure to find one which is really comfortable, as well as having the right capacity.

A few daypacks offer dual access points—top and panel. That’s a handy option.

Now let’s decide which size of a backpack is the best for walking. The sizes of backpacks vary by intended use. If you go on a trail walking then take a trail-running pack which is designed to hold as little as 10 liters. For a more difficult route, choose a climbing pack that holds 40 to 50 liters. When you go on a walking holiday with the whole family, and you carry extra gear for other members of your family, for example, your children, look for a pack in the 40-liter range—perhaps even larger.