When going walking and hiking, it is important to consider the weather conditions, remembering it is always best to plan for the worst!
Wearing the right footwear for walking is essential. Walking shoes and boots have excellent grip for uneven or slippery terrain and are designed to give your ankles sufficient support. A proper fitting shoe or boot will also reduce the risk of blisters, which can make even the loveliest walk unpleasant! Have a look at out Walking Boot Guide for more advice.
Walking socks will also reduce the risk of blisters, as well as making sure your feet remain comfortable. They are specifically designed to be extra thick on the heel and toe and to not slip down inside your footwear. If you are prone to blisters, you may want to consider 1000 mile socks, with a double membrane to stop your sock from rubbing your skin.
Trousers or shorts that are designed for walking are best because they will be hard wearing and comfortable. You could think about buying versatile zip-off trousers which can be converted to shorts, especially useful if you can't be sure of the weather.
If the weather is wet, you will need a waterproof jacket for your walk. There are a range of options here from lightweight packaway jackets for casual use, to more technical jackets which are more hardwearing and breathable, but make sure that your jacket fits with enough room underneath for a few layers to keep warm. Waterproof trousers and gaiters are also a great idea to keep your lower half dry. Have a look at our Waterproofs Guide for more information.
Walking Poles are becoming ever more popular and can be really useful, particularly over uneven terrain or down hill. Although many people use one, it is advised that you use a pair for maximum stability.