The Essentials Every Hiker Needs

If you are planning to hike, even if it is only for a day, it is a good habit to pack all the essentials. It’s true you might use only a few of them or none at all during a routine trip. But, if something goes wrong, you’ll really appreciate having them with you. Let’s take a look at all the things you should carry with you when going on a hike.

Food and Water

If your trip is going to belong, you should pack food for at least one extra day. If you’re figuring out how much water you’ll need to carry, consider that most people need about half a litre of water per hour while performing moderately strenuous activities. You should pack items that do not need to be cooked or that have a long shelf life like bars, and nuts.

First Aid Kit

It is extremely important to carry a first-aid kit and know how to use its contents. Buying pre-assembled first-aid kits saves you the time and hassle of assembling them yourself, but many people like to customize them to meet their particular needs. There should be treatments for blisters, bandages of various sizes, tape, disinfectants, pain medications, and pens and papers in any kit.

Navigation Devices

In order to navigate the backcountry these days, you will need a compass, a map, or a GPS device and a personal locator beacon. Even if you are going on a really short hike in a familiar area these are some of the navigation equipment you should always have with you.

Fire and Firestarter

The supplies you need to start and maintain a fire during an emergency need to be readily available to you. Most people use a disposable butane lighter for this purpose, but matches can also be used if they are waterproof or stored in an airtight container. In wet conditions, firestarters are crucial to jump-start a fire. Firestarters should ignite quickly and sustain heat for more than a few seconds.

Light Source

Having a light source with you during the night is essential to finding your way through the wilderness. Travellers prefer to use a headlamp because it keeps their hands free so they can cook dinner or hold trekking poles. Make sure you keep spare batteries on hand or charge your light source prior to your hike.

Sun Protection

You should always take sunglasses, sunscreen and sun-protective clothing with you. In the short term, it can cause sunburn and/or snow blindness and in the long run, premature skin ageing, skin cancer, and cataracts. Make sure to pack up some lotions with SPF, hats and long-sleeved clothes in your backpack even if you are hiking during a cloudy or rainy day.


Knives are important for gear repair, food preparation, first aid, kindling, and other emergency needs. Multitools and knives with multiple functions have things like a can opener, a flathead screwdriver, and/or scissors that fold up. More options in your knife or tool are necessary if your needs are complex.

Shelter for Emergencies

If you become stranded along the trail or become injured, carry an emergency shelter to keep you dry and protected from wind and rain. An ultralight tarp, an emergency space blanket, a large plastic bag or a bivy sack are all possible options. Tents are only an efficient emergency shelter if they’re always carried.

Interesting Indonesian Traditions

Every culture around the world has some fascinating traditions. We often take our customs for granted, as we follow them every year. However, when we look at a different culture on the other side of the world, we are amazed by how different they are. 

If you’re planning to visit Indonesia, prepare to witness some exciting and unique traditions. Each of them is memorable in its way. Here’s what you can come across.


Many cultures express their belief in God in different ways. Different traditions symbolise the degree of faith people have. Debus is one of such traditions, but it’s on the extreme side. People pierce their mouths, stab themselves, chew glass and walk through fire to prove that their faith in God keeps them safe.

Therefore, don’t get alarmed if you come across people with pierced cheeks walking down the road. It’s a part of the local tradition throughout Indonesia.

Tourism office of Banten province, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons


Many people will find this annual tradition in Tana Toraja more than interesting. During the ceremony, the deceased are symbolically brought back to life. They are taken out from their graves for a walk. According to the local tradition, the deceased never stop living. So every year, close family members take their bodies home, where they bathe and dress them before a walk throughout the village.

Once the ceremony is complete, the deceased are taken back to their graves until the next exhumation.


An old Bali tradition Metatah is a right of passage ceremony that that Hindu Balinese undertake. It’s a teeth-cutting process. While it sounds crazy, it’s only a two-millimetre cut that doesn’t hurt. The cut teeth are part of an offering during a prayer. The participant also takes spicy, salty, sweet, bitter, sour and astringent.

The tasting of these tastes is symbolic, as they represent anger, obedience, wisdom, happiness, and toughness.

Burning of the Last Ship

The tradition of burning the last ship is a part of the Bakar Tongkang Festival. It celebrates the bravery of Chinese immigrants who burned down their ship after leaving the Fujian province. The act of burning the last ship showed their resolve to never return to their hometown.

The replica of the ship weighs hundreds of pounds, and the burning ceremony is the highlight of the whole festival. The ceremony is an important reminder for modern generations to respect the determination of their ancestors.

Agustinuselwan, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons


Paying respect to deities is common in every culture around the world. The rituals differ significantly, but the goal is the same — showing respect towards gods. Whenever Javanese have a Suro or Muharram month, their men smear themselves in oil and charcoal to imitate the water buffalos.

They roam the streets to call down the rain, so the next season brings more crops for the local residents.


Fahombo is a physically demanding ritual performed on Sumatra Island. The origin of the ritual goes back to the aggressive tribal wars dating back centuries. Even though there are no conflicts now, the act of leaping over the enemies’ defence fort has become an annual tradition. It represents maturity in men as they reach adulthood.

The participant runs towards the two-metre stone wall and leaps over it. This tradition is significant as it symbolises the maturity of the participant.