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The Ultimate Hiking Gear Guide for Families

The Ultimate Hiking Gear Guide for Families

If you’re planning a family hiking trip, it’s essential to have the right gear to make the journey enjoyable, safe, and stress-free. With hundreds of outdoor gear options available, it can be overwhelming to select the right hiking gear for your family. To help you out, we have created this ultimate hiking gear guide for families.

Hiking Footwear

Footwear is one of the most critical aspects of hiking. When it comes to hiking footwear for families, it is crucial to consider durability, comfort, and support. Here are some of our top picks:

  • Merrell Chameleon 7 Access Mid Waterproof Hiking Boots
  • KEEN Oakridge Waterproof Hiking Shoes
  • Columbia Youth Redmond Waterproof Hiking Shoe
  • Salomon X Ultra Mid 3 Aero Hiking Shoes

Hiking Clothes

When it comes to hiking clothes, it’s essential to consider weather, terrain, and hiking duration. Here are some of our top picks:

  • Layers of clothing- to accommodate changes in weather conditions
  • Quick-drying synthetic or merino wool shirts- to keep the body dry and comfortable
  • Hiking pants or shorts- durable and quick-drying pants or shorts for comfortable movement
  • Water-resistant jacket or rain poncho- in case of unexpected rain
  • Sun hats and sunglasses- to avoid sunburns and eye damage

Hiking Backpacks

A comfortable and spacious backpack is crucial for carrying your gear and supplies. When selecting a hiking backpack for your family, you need to consider the size, storage space, and comfortability. Here are some of our top picks:

  • Osprey Porter 46 Travel Backpack
  • TETON Sports Scout 3400 Internal Frame Backpack
  • Deuter Kid Comfort Pro Child Carrier Backpack
  • REI Co-op Traverse 60 Pack – Men’s & Women’s

Hiking Accessories

Hiking accessories are additional items that can make your hiking trip more comfortable or even save your life. Here are some of our top picks:

  • Trekking poles- to help balance, provide stability and support
  • Headlamps or flashlights- for lighting during night hikes, early morning hikes or in case of emergencies
  • Portable water filters – to ensure a consistent supply of clean water throughout the hike
  • Emergency whistle or signal mirror – to attract attention, should something go wrong on your hike
  • First aid kit- to treat minor injuries such as cuts and scrapes that may occur while hiking


In summary, having the right hiking gear is crucial for a successful family hiking trip. To make it easier for you to choose, we have compiled this ultimate hiking gear guide for families. Regardless of your family’s hiking level of expertise, these hiking gears will ensure that your trip is safe, enjoyable, and stress-free. So go ahead, get geared up, and plan your next hiking trip with your family!

FAQ – Family Hiking Gear Recommendations

What are the must-have items for a family hiking trip?

Some must-have items for a family hiking trip are sturdy hiking boots, backpacks, hiking poles, hydration systems, maps, and a first-aid kit. It is also important to dress appropriately in comfortable and lightweight clothing to avoid overheating or getting too cold.

What type of backpack is best for a family hiking trip?

A backpack with a sturdy frame and comfortable straps is essential for a family hiking trip. It should also have multiple pockets and compartments to store items like water bottles, snacks, and first-aid kit. Some recommended brands are Osprey, Deuter, and Gregory.

What are the benefits of using hiking poles for a family hiking trip?

Hiking poles help with maintaining balance, reducing strain on joints, and providing extra support during steep climbs and descents. They also help distribute weight evenly throughout the body which can reduce fatigue and improve endurance.

What type of hydration system is best for a family hiking trip?

A hydration pack is a great option for a family hiking trip as it allows hands-free access to water while on the go. Another option is a water bottle with a built-in filtration system, which can help purify water from streams or lakes.

What should be included in a family hiking first-aid kit?

A family hiking first-aid kit should include bandages, gauze pads, antiseptic cream, pain relievers, tweezers, scissors, and a thermometer. It is also a good idea to include any necessary medications for family members, such as inhalers or EpiPens.

What type of clothing is best for a family hiking trip?

Lightweight, moisture-wicking clothing is the best option for a family hiking trip. It is important to dress in layers in case the temperature changes during the hike. Hats and sunglasses can also provide protection from the sun.

What are some recommended hiking boots for a family hiking trip?

Some recommended hiking boots for a family hiking trip are Merrell, Salomon, and KEEN. It is important to choose a shoe with good ankle support and traction for safety and comfort during the hike.

What type of map is best for a family hiking trip?

A topographical map is the best option for a family hiking trip as it shows the elevation changes and helps with navigation. It is also helpful to have a compass or GPS device to assist with directions.

What type of snacks are best for a family hiking trip?

Some recommended snacks for a family hiking trip are trail mix, beef jerky, energy bars, and fresh fruit. It is important to choose snacks that are high in protein and carbohydrates to provide sustained energy during the hike.

What should be considered when choosing a family hiking trail?

When choosing a family hiking trail, it is important to consider the length and difficulty of the trail, as well as the views and scenery. It is also important to ensure that the trail is safe for children and suitable for the whole family’s fitness level.

What should be done in case of an emergency during a family hiking trip?

In case of an emergency during a family hiking trip, it is important to stay calm and assess the situation. If necessary, seek medical attention and contact emergency services. It is also a good idea to have a whistle or other signaling device to alert others in case of an emergency.

Family Hiking Gear Recommendations:

  • Backpacks: A hiking backpack is essential for any family adventure. Look for a durable backpack with enough space to carry all your essentials, such as water bottles, snacks, and extra layers of clothing. Osprey and Deuter are popular brands for hiking backpacks.
  • Hiking Boots: A comfortable and sturdy pair of hiking boots is necessary for any hiking trip. Look for boots with good arch support, ankle stability, and waterproofing. Some popular brands for hiking boots include Salomon, Keen, and Merrell.
  • Trekking Poles: Trekking poles are helpful for added stability and balance on rocky or uneven terrain. Look for poles that are lightweight and adjustable. Black Diamond and LEKI are popular brands for trekking poles.
  • Hiking Socks: Good quality hiking socks are crucial for preventing blisters and ensuring comfort on the trail. Look for socks made of merino wool or synthetic materials. Some popular brands include Smartwool, Darn Tough, and Thorlos.
  • Hiking Clothes: Dressing in layers is key for hiking in any weather. Look for moisture-wicking and quick-drying materials to keep you comfortable on the trail. Some popular brands for hiking clothes include Patagonia, Columbia, and The North Face.
  • Hiking Hats: Protect your head and face from the sun with a good quality hiking hat. Look for hats with a wide brim and UPF protection. Some popular brands for hiking hats include Sunday Afternoons and Outdoor Research.
  • Sunscreen: Protect your skin from harmful UV rays with a high-quality sunscreen. Look for a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 and water-resistant properties. Some popular brands include Neutrogena, Banana Boat, and Coppertone.
  • Insect Repellent: Keep bugs at bay with a good quality insect repellent. Look for a repellent with DEET or Picaridin for maximum protection. Some popular brands include Off!, Sawyer, and Repel.
  • Hiking First Aid Kit: Accidents can happen on the trail, so it’s important to be prepared with a hiking first aid kit. Look for a kit with essentials like bandages, sterile gauze pads, antiseptic wipes, and adhesive tape. Adventure Medical Kits and REI Co-op have great options.
  • Water Bottles and Hydration Systems: Stay hydrated on the trail with either water bottles or hydration systems. Look for hydration systems that are easy to use and have a good flow rate. Some popular brands include CamelBak, Platypus, and Nalgene.
  • Hiking GPS Devices: A GPS device can be helpful for navigation on the trail. Look for devices with good battery life, topographical maps, and waypoint tracking. Garmin and Magellan have great options for hiking GPS devices.
  • Hiking Headlamps: A headlamp is necessary for any hiking trip that involves camping. Look for a headlamp with a bright beam and long battery life. Some popular brands include Black Diamond and Petzl.

Pros & Cons of The Ultimate Hiking Gear Guide for Families


  • Variety of Gear Options: The guide offers a wide range of gear options for families, including backpacks, tents, sleeping bags, and footwear. This ensures that families can find gear that is suited to their specific needs and preferences.
  • High-Quality Products: The guide recommends high-quality products that are suitable for outdoor activities, ensuring that families can rely on their gear to withstand the challenges of hiking and camping.
  • Expert Recommendations: The guide was written by expert hikers and backpackers who are well-versed in the needs of families. This means families can trust that the gear recommendations are based on extensive experience and knowledge.
  • Budget-Friendly Options: The guide offers budget-friendly options for families who may be looking for affordable gear. This makes it easy for families to find gear that suits their budget without compromising quality.
  • User-Friendly Layout: The guide is well-organized and easy to navigate, making it simple for families to find the information they need.
  • Cons:

  • Price: Some of the gear recommended in the guide may be expensive, making it difficult for families on a tight budget to afford.
  • Limited Brand Options: The guide may recommend specific brands for certain products, limiting families’ options if they prefer a different brand.
  • Not Suitable for All Hiking Abilities: The guide is geared towards families who have some hiking and camping experience and may not be suitable for families who are new to outdoor activities.
  • Limited In-depth Information: The guide provides a brief overview of each product, but may not provide enough detailed information for families who are looking to do extensive research before making a purchase.
  • May Not be Suitable for All Regions: The guide may recommend gear that is better suited for certain climates or regions, making it less helpful for families who live in different areas.

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