10 tech gadgets to level up your next hike (beginner or veteran)

Now that the weather is finally warm enough for outdoor adventures, it’s time to lace up your hiking boots and hit your favorite trails. Hiking is a great way to explore nature, take in breathtaking views, and get some exercise.

Whether you’re a new hiker looking to take up hiking or a long-distance veteran, reliable technology devices can make your hike safer and more comfortable. You never know what will happen in nature, so it’s wise to be prepared in case something doesn’t go as planned.

Here are 10 products and technology devices you’ll appreciate having in your backpack.

1. Solar power bank

Keep a portable solar bank in your backpack to prevent your important gear from losing charge while you’re out on the trail. Since it doesn’t require electricity, you can harness the power of the sun to keep all your essential technology running properly. This one from Amazon also has a built-in flashlight for added safety.

2. Garmin Inreach Mini

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Garmin’s inReach Mini is an essential satellite messaging device that pairs with your phone via Bluetooth and lets you join in on a hike in an emergency. This is especially useful when trekking on unfamiliar trails or going on long walks.

Send text messages with coordinates, track waypoints at various time intervals, have SOS functionality to connect with rescuers 24/7, and useful tools like access to topographic maps and weather forecasts is also equipped. Since it is super lightweight, it must be attached to the outside of the bag to maintain a good signal.

You must pay a monthly subscription fee. It costs $25 for the annual plan and $35 for the Freedom plan. However, you may decide that the peace of mind alone is worth the price.

3. Garmin Fenix ​​7S Solar

This stylish solar-powered watch tracks your health and provides advanced performance metrics. It also has professional features like ClimbPro and RacePro, as well as access to satellite imagery and enhanced topographic maps (with subscription). Garmin Fenix’s charge lasts up to 14 days, and the more sunlight your Garmin watch receives, the more the battery will charge.

4.AllTrails app

Compatible with Android and IOS, AllTrails is perfect for hikers to have on their phones. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been out in a new country and AllTrails maps have saved me from going down the wrong path. You can set up a free AllTrails account to access some features. Although the subscription costs $35.99 per year, we think AllTrails+ is worth it for any hiker.

see next: Best Fitness Apps of 2023

5.JBL Clip 4

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David Carnoy/CNET

Clip a small portable speaker to your backpack and keep your favorite songs playing throughout your hike. I especially like using speakers when hiking with a group because I can enjoy conversation while listening to music.

6. Insect repellent

Insect repellent is always useful, but especially if you’re hiking near water. Avoid sticky, smelly aerosols and try Thermacell insect repellent spray. There is no need to apply this unscented mosquito repellent to your body. Just turn on the gadget and it will repel bugs with a 15-foot protective barrier. It’s magic.

7. Hydration bladder

Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced hiker, hydration bladders are perfect for when you’re out on the trail. The 2-liter or 3-liter Hydro Booster makes it easy to carry and drink large amounts of water without having to carry around bulky water bottles. Throw your hydration pack into your bag with the hose sticking out and hit the road.

8. Water filter

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Stephen Beecham/CNET

If you’re on a long hike and can’t carry a lot of water with you, the LifeStraw is a lifesaver. According to the company, one filter can convert 1,000 gallons of pond or lake water into potable H2O and remove 99.99% of pathogens and harmful bacteria. You can also drink directly from the pond using a straw filter.

9. Trekking poles

Fizan trekking poles provide you with increased stability, increased speed, and reduced pressure on your body. Lightweight, foldable, adjustable and comfortable, it checks a lot of boxes. You can’t beat the price either.

10. GoPro Hero 8 with backpack strap holder

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Joshua Goldman/CNET

Record your adventures as you go on your favorite hikes. GoPro Hero 8 captures 4K video and 12 megapixel photos, has live streaming capabilities and 3 levels of stabilization. Keep the video flowing with minimal effort. attachment Attach Hero 8 to your backpack’s shoulder straps.

For more on fitness, here are tips for finding time to exercise and how to do it on a budget.

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