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How to Hike More – Even in the Winter
Lifestyle

How to Hike More – Even in the Winter

After a magical four days in Glacier National Park, the only way back to the train station was via passenger van with a Chris. Chris was in his 80s and had lived all over the world, including Alaska, Tennesee and Montana. He was a fascinating man who knew about Glacier, wildlife and served in the military.

Intrigued by Chris’s journey, I asked him how he started hiking.

“You just walk!”

You can take Chris’s advice for hiking, but there are also tips that make getting outdoors a little bit easier. So how can you increase your miles? Here are a few tips that should help.

9 Ways to Hike More

One of the lady hike mini-crews we’ve assembled

Photo by Andrew Ly on Unsplash

  1. Get the right equipment. One of the important things to invest in is a good pair of hiking boots. Visit a specialty store like REI, where you can ask the staff about features and purpose to find something in your price range. You can use a pack you already own or get one, but include the 10 essentials inside.
  2. Make plans with a friend or two. Find friends who have experience or want to get outdoors more. Scheduling hikes hold you more accountable than making plans on a whim.
  3. Purchase a book or two about trails. Listicles and posts often repeat the most popular hikes, but there are many parks and trails within a short drive of Philadelphia. 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles: Philadelphia shares… sixty hikes you can get to in about an hour from Philadelphia including the distance, starting point, difficulty and trail highlights. Falcon Guides are popular for hikers and often cover an entire state, like the one for PA. Websites like the Hiking Project will also help find trails in your distance and ability.
  4. Make a list of potential hikes. Use the aforementioned books to pick out a couple of hikes that are shorter, longer, close and further away. This way, you can quickly find a trail if you only have a few hours or if you want to get up at 6 AM on a Sunday and venture out. It’s way easier to pick from a list then to try to search before you’re about to leave.
  5. Let someone else know where you are going. Don’t turn your day hike into 127 hours. If you’re trekking solo, share your plans of where you’re going, which trail and when you plan on returning.
  6. Don’t forget water! And extra water. Regardless of the season, make sure you bring water and more than you think you’ll need. Bringing a hydration pack (like camelback) is lightweight and easy.
  7. Download an app with GPS like AllTrails. Technology can make our life way easier. You can track your hike with AllTrails, so you can if you lose track of markers, or can’t find the trail, you can find your previous path.
  8. Learn trail etiquette like yielding to uphill hikers as you go downhill and that horses have the right of way.
  9. Leave no trace! Fall in love with nature, but don’t alter it. Don’t leave trash, food scraps, clothes, your dignity… or anything else behind.

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Julie Hancher
Julie Hancher is Editor-in-Chief of Green Philly, sharing her expertise of all things sustainable in the city of brotherly love. She enjoys long walks in the park with local beer and greening her travels, cooking & cat, Sir Floofus Drake. View all posts by Julie Hancher

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