5 trekking hacks in the mountains that you must know before your first trek!

trekking hacks
Introduction: The first-ever trek is memorable. I remember the first trek that I did in the year 2008. It was a beginner-level trek near my hometown in Uttarakhand itself. Honestly, it was the time when I realized the need to have the right techniques for the trek. What I feel is that trekking is more about techniques than just walking up the hills. It’s about how you place your feet, how you breathe, and how you maintain your pace. In this article, I have brought to you the basic but most important trekking hacks in the mountains for your first ever trek! The tips that I give here have been a result of my exploration of the mountains for the past 15 years. You must remember to implement each of these while you plan your first trek. Not just for the beginners, these are equally important for even the pro-level trekkers!

1) Do Not Take Shortcuts.

It is the most common mistake that first-time trekkers make. While you climb up the mountains, you can easily spot shortcuts cutting between the trails. Not just the beginners but even the pro-level trekkers may feel a strong urge to take the shortcuts. Interestingly, you might feel as if the shortcuts will save you some distance and energy. However, I completely deny the fact. A shortcut might save you some distance but it eats a lot of energy. You might feel exhausted after taking each shortcut. Remember, it is one of the best trekking hacks in the mountains for your first ever trek!

2) Keep Yourselves Hydrated. 

Up to 60% of the human body consists of water and, do you believe that we can ignore it while we go on a trek? That won’t be a fair idea in my conviction. I have seen people making this mistake most often. Water is the most essential ‘to-do’ while you go on a trek. Sometimes, you may think of getting the water mid-day, but, that’s not a wise idea again. I have been on many treks where we didn’t find any water stream around the trail. I would suggest you carry your water bottle(s) and refill them whenever you see a stream. Additionally, you must not rush while drinking the water. The smart idea is to sip it while you take a break. As per Ayurveda, you must never drink water while standing. Hence, I would suggest you take some breath, calm yourselves, sit somewhere and then sip the water.

3) Be a Turtle, Not a Rabbit! 

I have always insisted on keeping this pointer amongst the best trekking hacks in the mountains. Climbing is an art. While you move up the trail, you must never climb fast. You should always start at a slow pace. At the same time, you should focus on stabilizing your breathing. Beginners may gasp tonnes of air while they trek up. However, I suggest three things that you must implement from the moment you trek up. First, you should start at a slow pace, be a turtle, not a rabbit! Second, try controlling your breathing. Inhale and exhale continuous but in fixed patterns. Do not over-in/exhale. Third, keep a steady pace. Do not get excited to see the straight trails at times and increase your pace. Whatever the terrain may be, the speed must be constant.

4) Wear Smart. 

Choosing the right outfit before you plan your trek is important. You must note that you should choose a different outfit for your trek in winter and summer. While in summer, you need an outfit that saves you from the direct rays of the sun, in winters you need ones that save you from the cool waves. What remains common in all cases is the compact and lightweight nature of the clothes. It is important to note that the heavier the clothes, the heavier your bagging. You would never want to carry a heavyweight bag unless you plan for an Olympic medal in heavyweights! You should carry dry-fit clothes, more fleeces, minus jackets, gloves, and comfy trousers. Never take off your jackets once you reach the top. Due to excessive sweating, you might feel an urge to take them off. That’s another invitation to mountain sickness! The breeze flows strongly at the top and makes you feel much colder in those circumstances.

5) Deal With Hiking Hangovers. 

Hiking hangover is a fancy term. I came to know about it once I was in the Garhwal mountains. I was carrying a team of ten people who were very new to the mountains. The trek started from Deoriatal in Chopta to the world’s highest Shiva Temple called Tungnath. In layman’s language, ‘hiking-hangover,’ is the term used for tiredness that you might feel after trekking. While we came down to our accommodation in Chopta, we discovered a guy who felt tired. The fatigue came out of excessive stress due to the trek. Luckily, the guy was given a timely rescue and excellent treatment during his stay at one of the resorts in Chopta. I would also suggest you never stress your body if you are not prepared for a trek. Additionally, you must always keep in the loop the hotel/resort you plan to stay at while you are on a trek. The hotel guys know more about the place and can help you in difficult times!


The first-ever trekking experience might seem fascinating. It indeed is. But, we must always remember that we should take more precautions while we are in the mountains. The hills have lesser facilities and even the mobile phone network might be patchy sometimes. In such cases, it becomes difficult to connect with the world during difficult times. It’s always suggested to follow the aforementioned trekking hacks in the mountains. Plan safe and trek well!
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