Some, if not most, people consider hiking to be a group activity. Sure, hiking with a couple of friends or even just a single partner is fun. It also provides the added safety net of having a company with you in case you run into trouble. But that does not mean hiking with a group is the only way to do it.
In fact, there are adventurous spirits out there who prefer not to be shackled by a partner when they are on a mountain hike. It has its own charm and benefits. So the short answer to the question would be, no, it is not weird to hike alone at all.
However, you are definitely not here for the short answer. So, let us explore all the possibilities and potential dangers that may come from hiking alone.
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Potential Benefits of Hiking Alone
Whether hiking is beneficial to health is another topic that is not our prime concern. However, those who like the rush of adrenaline that comes from climbing a steep mountain trail require no other reason to go on a hike.
Here are some of the benefits that come from hiking on your own
- Finding Partners
One of the main issues that come from hiking is gathering your partners. If you are not comfortable with hiking alone, you need to call your friends or partners to see if they are ready and free. For some reason, if they cannot make it, you need to put your trip on hold.
For solo hiking, you do not need to wait for others or gather your friends to have your adventure. Even your social circle likes to partake in these activities; it is not possible for everyone to be available all the time. Everybody has their own hassles in life to go through.
- Picking Out The Place
Even if you have a couple of friends who are interested in going hiking with you, there comes the matter of picking out the place. You might prefer a mellow hike, while others might choose to go with a more dangerous climb. The last thing you want is to succumb to peer pressure and go to a place that you do not enjoy.
Hiking is an exceptionally personal activity, and everyone has their own taste when it comes to the hiking spot. It also depends on your mood. Even if you are an adrenaline junkie, you might not like the rush all the time. Hiking alone allows you to choose the place that better suits your mood.
- Schedule Management
When you are hiking with your friends, you need to set a date for the trip that suits everyone. And naturally, it is not possible for everyone to be free on just about any date. Making the schedule for the journey can be quite hectic, especially if your social circle has a busy life.
Hiking on your own frees you from this burden and allows you to introduce some spontaneity in your life. You can pick out a date that perfectly suits you. In fact, you can simply pack your backpack and be on your way to the hiking spot if you want without having to worry about anyone.
- Free From Idle Conversation
Communicating and interacting with your group of friends is definitely fun, but sometimes it might get boring. When you are on a long mountain trail, idle chit chats grow old a lot sooner. If you are alone, you do not have to make conversation and focus more on the natural beauty around you.
However, not everyone might agree with this advantage. Although we do respect different opinions, we believe hiking should be a spiritual experience and that you should take in the surrounding beauty instead of engaging in meaningless gossip. If you want to enjoy the serenity of nature, it is best to hike alone.
- No Obligations
Imagine you are on a mountain hike with your friends and one of them got tired. If you are a regular, chances are you have had this happen to you more than once. There is always that guy who gets too tired or scared to continue the journey, and you have to cut your trip short because of him.
If you are hiking alone, you will never have to worry about anyone’s comfort but yourself. You can hike as long as you feel like and return when you feel your stamina running low. This is a freeing experience and allows you to enjoy yourself to the fullest extent.
Things To Remember When You Are Hiking Alone
Now that you understand the fun side of hiking on your own, you might be itching to try it out for yourself. However, make sure you follow the tips mentioned below to ensure you do not put yourself at risk in any way.
- Choose Hiking Spot Carefully
If this is your first solo hike, you would be wise to choose an easier trail. There is no reason to get ahead of yourself and pick out a long trail if you do not fully understand whether you will enjoy it. Solo hiking is not for everyone, and there is no shame in admitting it.
- Let Someone Know Of Your Trip
Do not start your journey alone without telling anyone. By letting your friends know of your trip and the expected time you return, they will be able to check up on you and see if you made it back home safely.
Accidents happen, and the best thing to do is prepare for the worst. If you fall into any trouble on the trail and cannot return, your friend can let authorities know, and they can get a rescue party together to look for you. Going alone on a hike without letting anyone know is not only irresponsible but also quite reckless.
- Pack Proper Provisions
It is natural to get thirsty and hungry on a trail. When you are with a group, the good thing is that you do not need to stress about it as hard. Even if you run low on water, your friends can give you some out of their bottle. But when you are on your own, you do not have anyone to rely on but yourself.
That is why it might be a good idea to take more than what you think is enough food and water with you when you are going solo. In addition, make sure you keep some basic first aid kits like bandages or aspirin with you so that you are prepared for just about anything.
- Check The Weather
This tip is not only viable for when you are hiking solo but also for when you are with a group. Before starting your trip, you should always check the weather forecast. Hiking a mountain trail in bad weather is extremely dangerous and should always be avoided.
End of the day, whether you hike alone or with a group is entirely up to you. You can have fun on both types of trips and should not worry about it too much.
But if you hike alone you should be more careful because you are alone and if any accident happens you have to tackle it alone. For example – if you are planning for uphill hiking don’t ignore the recommended exercise for uphill hiking, also be careful about the clothing and shoes.
We hope you found our article informative. Hopefully, you should have no issues if you are planning on a solo hiking trip.