Hike planning and packing checklists

Preparation, planning, safety and the right gear

It doesn’t matter if you are going for a half hour stroll or a multi-day trek, the principles are still the same, plan your hike thoroughly. While this checklist may not be conclusive and will vary depending on your personal needs and preferences, I hope it provides a good starting point and helps reinforce that preparation and planning are the most important aspect of any adventure you undertake.

Hike Planning Checklist

Hike planning checklist

While there is no universal checklist that applies to every hike there are certain basics that you should familiarise yourself with when you are preparing to hike. Download, print and start planning. 

First aid and survival checklists

All hikers should be armed with sufficient health and hike safety knowledge to avoid encountering unnecessary problems in the bush. Before venturing off the beaten track, it is important to ensure you are well prepared with a hike safety plan and are carrying the correct First Aid and Survival Kits for all possible emergency situations.

First aid kit checklist

First aid kit

Even if you are going for a short hike, there is always a small possibility you could break a limb, cut yourself or get bitten by insects or snakes, so you need to be prepared for the worst. Most first aid kits are compact and contain all the essential items you’ll need.

Survival kit checklist

Survival kit

I personally carry and highly recommend that you always have a personal survival kit, even on day hikes. Your Survival Kit should contain all the necessary items for survival in the wilderness.

Hike packing checklists

Regardless of your level of fitness, there are some essential items you should always carry in your pack for your own safety when hiking. I have provided a more detailed information under preparing your pack but wanted to summarise what I believe to be the minimum items you should carry on both day and overnight adventures.

Day hike checklist

Day hikes

This one-page checklist covers the Ten Essentials that should be considered as a standard inclusion in every day pack.


Overnight hikes

As well as including the Ten Essentials, this two-page checklist provides a detailed overview of all items that should be considered on overnight or multi-day hikes.

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