Hiking Gear List:

What I Take


My Hikes

A lot of you have asked about my hiking gear list, and I wanted to write something that talks about it.

Having hiking gear is essential to helping you make the best out of your outdoor experience. It allows you to push the extra mile. It will enable you to be reassured about having the right gear. But sometimes, you don’t know what to bring.

I’ve been hiking for a long time now. I’ve learned about the best gear and what might slightly overkill. So, I’ve stuck with the following hiking gear list for the last couple of years.

Let’s get into what I carry on my hikes.

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My Day Hiking Gear List

This is the hiking gear list for most of my hikes. I mainly day hike more than anything.


First Aid Kit

I carry a first aid kit by Surviveware. It has everything that you would need for hiking. I take out a lot of excess items to lighten the load. You only need a few things when doing a day hike. But it’s nice to have some supplies when accidents happen.



I use the same raincoat for hiking that I use for cycling. Michelle got us Baleaf Outdoor Raincoats a few years ago, and they perform well. They’re bright safety yellow, which is good on the bike and good in the woods if you want to be seen by hunters and people like that.


Emergency Layers

This is a necessary hiking gear list item to take with you. Emergency layers are meant to be used in the event that your clothing is wet. Suppose I fall into the water or a creek during below-freezing temperatures out in the wilderness. I need to be able to change into dry clothing. I carry a pair of insulated running tights and a long-sleeved shirt in a Ziplock bag. It’s incredibly lightweight and will substitute for warm, dry clothing in a pinch.


Waterproof Socks

I carry a pair of neoprene waterproof socks with me. I put them on if I get my socks wet and it’s cold. But I mainly use them to cross creeks. They pad my feet and keep them dry. It is better than barefoot because the rocks hurt my feet. When I was a kid, I could run barefoot all day long. Not anymore!


Waterproof Phone Case

I carry a waterproof phone case in the event it starts raining heavily. It allows me to keep my phone dry while still being able to take photos and videos with it. As a content creator, I need to be able to continue making content. Michelle got us these, and they’re fantastic.



I always carry an assortment of different snacks when hiking. I take my favorite trail bars and beef jerky sticks. I also take some raw honey, mustard (for cramps), and different energy gels for athletic performance.


Hydration and Filter

I usually carry one bottle of water with electrolytes mixed in and another bottle of plain water. I take a water filter just in case I need to filter more water. I’ve used my water filter many times, especially while camping.


Flashlight and Batteries

I carry a flashlight and a headlamp. I have additional batteries for each of them.



I carry a large knife in my bag and a smaller knife on my shoulder strap.


Bug Spray

I carry lemon grass spray for buffalo gnats and repellent spray for mosquitoes and ticks.



I carry a synthetic towel to keep the sweat off my face. I’m a Sasquatch, and we tend to sweat a lot, so I must have a towel with me. The towel dries quickly, which is excellent since I constantly sweat.


Woods Kit

I carry toilet paper, a sandwich bag, and a hand shovel. This is my woods kit. For pooping in the woods! This is a must-have for the hiking gear list if you don’t want to be uncomfortable.


My Overnight Hiking Gear List

I occasionally do overnight hikes. It is also essential to bring the right gear with you on an overnight hike.


Day Pack Gear

I carry all the stuff listed above in my overnight pack. Check out my backpack reviews here.


Sleeping Pad

I carry a blow-up sleeping pad, so I don’t have to lie on the hard ground.


Sleeping Bag

I carry a 20-degree mummy-style sleeping bag. I take a few air-activated hand warmers to toss into the sleeping bag on colder nights. It makes it extra warm when I crawl into it. The emergency layers make great sleeping clothes if I want to be a little warmer.



I used to carry a one-person tent before I met Michelle. Now I am bringing a three-person tent made for backpacking. The extra space is excellent, and it isn’t too much to carry, to be honest.


Sleep Pillow

I carry a blow-up camp pillow because you get much better sleep at night when you have a pillow.


Camp Kitchen

I carry a pocket rocket-styled stove and a nice mess kit. I have a Ferro rod in case I need it, some waterproof matches, and a lighter, just in case. I try not to make fires.


Camp Food

I bring a few Mountain House Meals with me for dinner and breakfast. I might get a few extra snacks, cookies, or something like that to munch on around camp. I bring a few packets of instant coffee for the morning because coffee helps me come to life.


And that sums up what my hiking gear list includes. I hope my list has helped you improve your list. If you enjoyed reading this article, please share it. For more resources and exclusive content, subscribe to my free monthly newsletter.

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Thanks again for checking out another one of my articles and until next time, I’ll see you on the trail!

Shawn Gossman

Shawn Gossman

Founder, Hiking with Shawn

Howdy folks! My name is Shawn Gossman and I founded Hiking with Shawn. I’m an avid hiker, cyclist and outdoorsman here in the Shawnee National Forest. I was born and raised in Southern Illinois and never want to leave. Click here to learn more about Shawn Gossman

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