There is no way around: we have to buy a few things before we hit the trails. But – we don’t need to have multiple pieces of each kind of gear. It’s enough to get one, but a good one. Don’t get into the faulty of buying cheap gear, as it can be a quite short-sighted decision. As I know very well what it means to travel on a budget, I understand the struggle. There are things we can save on, and items we should get the best quality we can afford. As my father used to say, “We are too poor to buy cheap”, and I try to live by that. Pick and choose where I can save and where “saving” would backfire to cost actually more.
How do I stay on a budget? I save on clothing. But not on their quality – I have very few items, but they are high quality. I also got some second-hand, as high-end products tend to last long. I also save by camping instead of staying in hotels or B&Bs whenever it’s possible. I don’t eat out and save all year on a variety of pleasures to have money for what I think is of higher priority.
I also buy the big price items in stages. Last season I had to buy a lot of things, so I splurged on the most important items: boots and a backpack and the rest got second-hand and the bare minimum in number. This season it’s the absolutely amazing down sleeping bag. Next, I hope to buy an ultra-light sleeping mat and another backpack – this time smaller and lighter. In the future, I might get a lighter and sturdier tent.
EDIT: I am happy to say that I updated my sleeping mat to an ultralight Therm-A-Rest NeoAir (I love it! A full review soon) and exchanged my budget (but good) Vango tent to an ultralight Double Rainbow by TarpTent. I hiked another season with Deuter AirContact and still love it – I had a very heavy load at times but my back was in good hands (or back support).
Below I gathered basic items from hiking clothing, gear, food and other needed items. Are those the only worth buying? Of course not, as a lot of that is subjective. Buying from a well-respected company (like the North Face, Arc’teryx, Rab, Solomon, Icebreaker, MSR, Patagonia, ….etc.) generally means high-quality product. I read a lot of online reviews, as I am anxious about spending a lot on a thing I wouldn’t love all that much. Especially, that I mostly buy online with no way to try the thing on. Thank goodness for free returns! 😀 I tried and/or bought & sent back at least a dozen pairs of hiking boots before finding the pair I loved!
My gear and clothing reviews:
Best hiking camera for hikers: Sony rx100 m3
Great backpack for women: Deuter Aircontact
Great budget tent for hikers: Vango Blade 200
Amazing hiking boots: Solomon Quest 4D
My tips and advice related to hiking gear and clothing for women:
- Check out my ultimate packing list for hiking women. It was created for cooler weather, but leave behind the warmest top layer and it’s perfect also for other conditions.
- You perfect guide to gradual upgrading your gear so you can switch to lightweight hiking – for safer and more comfortable experience!
- For something extra – when you want to add some oomph to your hiking/camping adventure or if you look for a cool gift for a hiking significant other (or yourself!): a sweet little list of cool hiking and camping gear and gadgets!
- Ever wonder what all the fuss about merino clothing is all about? No problem: Check here to find out why merino wool is the best option for hiking.
- Oh, to pole or not to pole! Or rather: should you be hiking using poles or maybe it’s all a complete silliness? Read on why I think hiking with trekking poles will turn you into a 4×4 hiking machine!
- Are you a woman heading off to Scotland? Check out this full and complete packing list for your Scottish adventure!
- Thinking about buying a good sleeping bag but not sure which to choose? This handy guide to buying down sleeping bags will tell you all about the difference between down and synthetic sleeping bags as well a lot of valuable information on down. Ma
A Woman Afoot Recommends: Awesome hiking & camping gear and clothing for women
Below you can find a subjective collection of things I’ve tried and recommend,
things I wish I had or are on my list of things to get. I hope you find it useful! 🙂
Why searching through multiple stores? Here you find all you need 🙂
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