Want to experience something life-changing? Go on your first sunrise hike.
From watching the sunrise to bonding with nature and anyone you bring along with you to challenging your body to refreshing your mindset, it’s no wonder sunrise hikes are so popular. They feed your soul, boost your physical fitness, and are magic for the mind.
Unfortunately, many people won’t have the best experience they can because they didn’t do their homework beforehand. Therefore, to get the most out of your first sunrise hike, you must adequately prepare for the adventure.
Continue reading for tips on gearing up for your first sunrise hike.
Image Source: Pixabay
Pick a Hike With a Great Sunrise
One of the main reasons you’re taking this hike is to experience the sunrise once you get to the end. So, pick a hike with an excellent view of the sunrise. The end of the hike should face in the right direction and be in an area where you can sit and enjoy the view.
Additionally, you don’t have to choose a new hike. Because it is a bit nerve-wracking to hike while it’s dark, it’s okay to pick a hike you already know but have yet to experience for the sunrise.
Lay Out Your Outfit and Pack Your Essentials the Night Before
Getting everything prepared the night before your sunrise hike is the best way to go, starting with your outfit.
You should have lots of layers for this hike because it will start cold and get warmer once the sun comes up. Your outfit should consist of a base layer, mid-layer, shell jacket, and a belay jacket. You should be able to stay warm without sweating and easily peel off and pack layers as the day warms up.
Much of what you pack will be the same as what you’d bring on a night hike, like a bright hiking light, first aid kit, hiking poles, and extra clothing. Here are a few other things to pack for your sunrise hike:
- A blanket
- Lots of water
- Hand sanitizer
- Backup light sources
- Portable charger
Bring Your Dog With You
Bring your dog with you if you’re nervous about hiking in the dark. They’ll be a solid source of comfort for you and can keep you going when the hike gets tough.
Dogs are also excellent hiking partners because they can see in the dark. They have more rods, bigger pupils, night-vision reflectors, and retinal compounds that enhance their ability to see at night. So, you’ll have an extra layer of security while hiking in the wee hours of the morning.
Understand what your dog can handle and ensure they’re safe during the hike. Be sure to pack their essentials, like food, water, toys, and any medication they take.
Set Your Alarm and Get a Good Night’s Rest
Going on your first sunrise hike is almost like waiting for Christmas morning. You barely get any sleep and depend on pure adrenaline and excitement to keep you up for the rest of the day.
You can be pumped for the hike, but you’ve got to get a good night’s rest. Because you’re hoping to catch the sunrise once you’ve reached the end of your hike, you’ll be required to get up pretty early.
Factor in what time the sun is supposed to rise, how long it will take to get to the hike and complete it, and the pace you plan to go at when setting your alarm the night before.
Fuel Your Body Well the Morning of Your Hike
There is still a lot of debate around whether breakfast is the most important meal of the day. However, it’s critical for completing your sunrise hike. You must fuel your body well the morning of your hike.
Your breakfast should be nutritious, not heavy. Skip unhealthy fats, carbs, and lots of salt. Instead, balance your breakfast with:
- Fruits like blueberries, bananas, strawberries, and oranges
- Healthy fats like avocado, nuts, and cheese
- Proteins like eggs, yogurt, and lean beef
- Vegetables like spinach, cherry tomatoes, mushrooms, and kale
- Healthy carbs like whole grains, oatmeal, and potatoes
Hiking in the dark can be dangerous. You can’t necessarily see who or what is out there. So, you must prioritize safety and security on your hike to ensure you make it to your destination and back without issue.
Do the following to prioritize safety and security on your sunrise hike:
- Listen to your body
- Beware of other hikers
- Keep your map handy
- Ensure your phone is fully charged
- Stay fed and hydrated during the hike
- Wear reflective clothing and a headlamp
- Don’t venture too far off from the hiking path
- Familiarize yourself with closest medical care facilities
- Pay attention to network availability on your cell phone
- Keep your dog within eyesight if they’re coming along
- Stay close to your friends if they’re accompanying you on the hike
- Pay attention to your surroundings, especially if you’re wearing headphones
- Tell someone who isn’t going with you where you’re going and how to reach you
- Know basic first aid, like how to clean up a cut, wrap an ankle injury, minimize the effects of a rash, and so forth
Staying hydrated is crucial for a successful sunrise hike. We aren’t saying that you can’t have a Gatorade, coffee, or energy drink. However, it’s best to enjoy these things once you’ve made it to your viewpoint or back to your vehicle when the hike is over.
Sugary drinks are a hiker’s kryptonite. Instead, pack plenty of water. Water is the best way to hydrate your body, keep your temperatures level, and organs functioning, and lubricate your joints. Drink lots of water before, during, and after your hike to keep dehydration, fatigue, and mental tiredness away.
Be Ready for the Sunrise
One of the main reasons you’re going on this hike is to enjoy the sunrise. So, be ready to capture the moment.
Spread out your blanket once you reach your viewpoint. Ensure your phone is fully charged to take pictures and videos. Or break out the camera equipment you packed and set it up to capture the sun just as it peaks.
Get the most out of your first sunrise hike by preparing adequately for it. Start with thorough research of the hike you plan to embark on and ensure it’s got an exceptional view of the sunrise.
Second, lay out your hiking outfit and pack your essentials the day before so that you don’t forget anything. Also, prepare your dog for the hike and pack all they need if you plan to bring them along.
Next, get a good night’s rest and set your alarm so that you’re up in time to make it to your viewpoint just before the sunrises. Fuel your body with a good breakfast the morning of also.
Lastly, prioritize safety, hydrate all the way, and get your camera ready for one of the best sunrise experiences you’ll have in your life.
Contributor: Luke Smith
Words about contributor of this Article: “Luke Smith is a writer and researcher turned blogger. Since finishing college he is trying his hand at being a freelance writer. He enjoys writing on a variety of topics but lifestyle and outdoor topics are his favorite. When he isn’t writing you can find him traveling, hiking, or gaming.”