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It may seem odd to think about carrying office gear while hiking, but this little four hiking hardware gear group contains some essentials that should be carried on every hiking trip. Perhaps there is a better name for it than office, but I didn’t think of one. By office gear we are referring to any gear that is information related, or gear for assisting our minds.
Basic Office Gear Items
Flashlight – A good gear item to carry even on day hikes just in case the hike ends up lasting a little longer than planned. Even more important for overnight trips in case something requires attention after dark.
Compass – Often not absolutely essential on hikes that follow well-marked trails, it is still a good idea to always carry one just in case you become disoriented and need some help reestablishing direction and location.
Map(s) – An essential item on most hikes. It is a good practice to always carry a map of the area you hiking through. Of course you must know how to read it for it to be of any good to you.
Pen & Paper – Always useful for making notes about hiking trips and for recording information and ideas that you might otherwise forget. Also useful for leaving messages for other members of you hiking party should you split up to explore seperately.
Car Keys & Money – While not strictly information based, these are items that we may need to carry with us to help use reenter our non-hiking lives when the hike is over.
Optional Office Gear Items
Altimeter – Most often used by climbers for monitoring altitude this can sometimes be as useful as a compass when it comes to locating one’s current position on a map.
GPS’s –These are devices that allow a hiker to use the worldwide system of satellites for position identification. This is a fairly recent development in hiking gear that some will find useful or at least interesting.
Camera – If you want to share your hiking trip with someone who wasn’t there, pictures are the easiest way.
Watch – Some people like to carry a watch while they are hiking so they can time how long it takes them to cover a certain distance and so they know how much longer it will be light and so forth. I personally don’t like to carry one when I’m out hiking. I think it is more in keeping with my reasons for wanting to hike in the first place not to carry one, and prefer to depend instead on my innate sense of time and the position of the sun.
Radio – This is another gear item that I feel runs contrary to my purpose for being out in the wilderness on a hike, but some people find a small, portable radio a desirable addition to their gear. I suppose the strongest argument for carrying a radio is to keep up on the weather forecasts, but even better would be learning to read the weather signs for yourself.
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