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Summer Hiking Tips: How to stay cool while hiking?

May 19, 2023

Summer Hiking Tips: How to stay cool while hiking?

Photo by Dhiren Rai on Unsplash

Follow these summer hiking tips to stay cool while hiking in hot weather!

Without a doubt, hiking is the best way to enjoy your summer holidays. It offers a stress relief that city life doesn't provide and it's also great for getting in touch with nature! Hikes give you access to natural beauty like mountain vistas, waterfalls, forests - all things that cities lack. But no outdoor activity comes without its risks especially if you're hiking in hot weather. One of these risks is scorching hot temperatures during the summers which may cause dehydration or sunstroke if precautions aren't taken beforehand!

So, to help you out, we've rounded up 5 summer hiking tips on how to stay cool while hiking this summer! You'll be ready for any trail as long as you keep these tips in mind.

Related: Want to get in shape for hiking but don't know how to? Check out this blog post!

Here are 5 summer hiking tips to help you stay cool while hiking.

1. Know the best times to hike

Summer Hiking Tips: How to stay cool while hiking?

Photo by Dhiren Rai on Unsplash

Knowing the best time to start and stop your hiking trip for the day is one of the most important summer hiking tips. It is best to avoid hitting the trail around 1 to 3 PM. These are the hottest time of the day and hiking won’t be fun when your body is getting beat up with sweltering heat of the sun. Instead, plan your hike to start right after the sunrise. This way you will be able to enjoy the cool weather at least for a few hours. Most hikers consider 5 AM to 8 AM to be the best time to start hiking on hot summer days. You can also try going on shorter hikers late in the evenings right after 4 PM. As the days are usually longer in summer, you will have plenty of time to explore plenty of cool places.

Related: Thinking about going on a summer camping trip? Check out this blog post!

2. Choose the right trail

Summer Hiking Tips: How to stay cool while hiking?

Photo by Dhiren Rai on Unsplash

Another important summer hiking tip is picking the right trail. It's very necessary for a fun and safe summer trip outdoors. The trail you choose will have a big impact on your overall hiking experience. Elevation, shade, and water are the three most important things to consider when choosing a trail. We highly recommend hiking on trails that offer plenty of shade to avoid direct sunlight. It will also be a good idea to choose one that lies near a source of water. This way you will have plenty of opportunities to cool down every now and then. Plus, the trails near bodies of water are slightly cooler. Another thing to keep in mind is the elevation of the trail. Temperatures become cooler the higher you go. So, try looking for places with high elevation for your next summer adventure.

3. Drink plenty of water

summer hiking tips how to stay cool while hiking

Photo by Bit Cloud on Unsplash

On any hot summer day, drinking plenty of water should be a top priority especially if you’re out hiking. Dehydration is a serious threat to your safety. Your body can lose 1 liter of water every hour while hiking. And though everyone has different water needs, it is best to drink water frequently before you get thirsty. Keep in mind if you’re thirsty, you’re already dehydrated. Taking small sips of water before you become thirsty can prevent dehydration. We recommend drinking a half-liter of water every hour when it’s 80°F or 26.67 °C. But never force yourself to drink water. Water sources can be unreliable in the summer. Therefore, you should carry an extra bottle of water and make sure to refill them whenever possible.

Not sure how much water to bring on your summer camping trip? Just go through this blog post by Small Car Camp!

4. Wear appropriate clothing

summer hiking tips how to stay cool while hiking

Photo by Joshua Earle on Unsplash

The next you thing need to do is wear clothing that can help you cope with the summertime temperatures. The type of dress you wear will drastically impact your overall hiking experience. That’s why you should wear clothing that is lightweight, not too tight, and light-colored. White shorts, shirts, and pants are an absolute must for hot-weather hikes. The right fabric will help regulate your body temperature. The lighter the fabric the better. Cotton is the most breathable fabric and is hugely available. But you should avoid clothing made from cotton. Instead, go for nylon and polyester. Never wear dark colored clothes.

Related: The Ultimate Guide To Backpacking Clothes - What to pack?

5. Remember to slow down and rest

Summer Hiking Tips: How to stay cool while hiking?

Photo by Dhiren Rai on Unsplash

Last on our list of summer hiking tips is slowing down and taking rest. For fitness fanatics who love hiking to the extreme, this may not sound like a tip at all. But hear me out. Hot days can take a heavy toll on a person pretty quick. No matter how fit you are, you should never overdo it. Your body can’t cool down when you’re constantly on the move. So, don’t push for those big miles when the heat is beating you down. It’s best to take rest every now and then in a shaded, cool spot. Taking rest gives you time to rehydrate and recover. Slowing down on your hike can also help you avoid heat stroke. Chilling out for a bit also lets you take in the scenery and replenish your energy.


All in all, these are our 5 summer hiking tips to keep yourself cool and enjoy the trip outdoors. You can set your hike up for success by doing some pre-planning. Make sure to keep these simple pointers in mind for next time you go out and stay safe. Now that you know how to beat the heat while hiking this summer, you’re ready to get out there. See you on the trails!

Do you have any tips on how to stay cool hiking this summer? Let us know in the comments down below.

Want to know the best places to go hiking this summer? Check out our list of “10 Bucket List Worthy Hikes In 2021” that will blow you away.

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