Hiking and Trekking: Do They Mean The Same Thing?

Hiking and Trekking

2020 is such a messy year. COVID-19 changed the world’s view— in politics, how we go out for a walk, doing our daily grocery, how we interact with other people, chat with our friends and loved ones. Moreover, it affects our jobs and future.  Now, we are slowly coming back, continuing and adapting to our “new normal” lives —some back to their work, creating a new business, or some do seek some adventures. Places allowing visitors to go to the beach or activities like hiking and trekking are among these.

What are Hiking and Trekking?

According to the definition, hiking involves going along an energetic walk in a natural environment for a day or overnight. On the other hand, trekking involves a long or difficult journey in a wild natural environment for multiple days. 

Hiking and Trekking

5 Things To Differentiate Hiking and Trekking

The question is, what is the significant difference? 

Though they both involve walking in nature, there is an essential distinction between the two. Below are five things to distinguish the differences between hiking and trekking:

  1. Purpose

Some hiker’s reason for hiking is for photos. Hiking is more involved in a marked trail area that helps reconnect with nature, reduce stress, and calm our mind for a day and leaves us breathless with an awe-inspiring view as we reach the summit of the mountain. At the same time, trekking other than the panoramic view involves more spiritual or moral significance. Pilgrimage is one example of the trek. Both are fun and full of adventure. 

  1. Trails

Hiking used an established hiking trail and footpaths, which is more comfortable for people who start this kind of activity. There are day hikes and overnight hikes. The terrain can vary from flat to very steep. With trekking, it may include footpaths and hiking trails, but mostly it is done through dirt roads, madden trails, or any areas without roads and in complete wilderness. The route is often less traveled than the hiking route. It is remote and mountainous.

  1. Duration

Some had a short amount of time to unwind and want an activity over the weekend then hiking is more suitable. Hiking tours include short hikes or mountain excursions each day. A hike may last just one hour or more and maybe a simple out and back trail to an overlook, or it could be a loop hike or a point to point hike. The daily hiking distance is generally around 3 to 5 miles a day. It is about the same distance walk playing a round of golf. Unlike a hiking tour, most treks are longer and more complicated than hikes. A trek will typically start and end at a different point. The distance trekking can go anywhere from 30 miles to about 15000 miles. It would be as long as it takes to get to the destination sometime, it can be around two days or more. Mountaineers are the best example of this trek duration.

  1. Endurance

When it comes to endurance, hiking is more comfortable than trekking. Hiking is more on light walks and needed light physical strength to compare to trekking. Trekking requires challenging activity both physically and mentally. It requires stamina and much strength (ex. carrying more gear and supplies), doing trek needs perfect physical and mental condition, and walking for 6 to 7 hours on the road that takes a week of the journey.

  1. Preparation

In hiking, it only requires a light day pack with water, a snack, comfortable hike shoes, a jacket, or an extra layer to put on the higher elevations and if it is an overnight hike, add changing clothes, socks, and a sleeping bag. While trekking requires more planning and preparation. It is a long journey on foot in areas where there is complete wilderness. Trekkers tend to camp, staying in small mountain inns or remote huts. They bring a lot, including a tent, cookware, clothes, medical kit, a compass, an updated map, whistle for emergencies, flashlight or headlamp. Other essential materials to bring are insect repellent for insect bites, extra money, food that usually last for a week, comfortable trek boots, and lastly, trekking poles to help in terrain and steep roads.

Hiking and Trekking with Discipline: Best Activities During Pandemic

In this article, we have compared hiking and trekking, explained the differences, and get some ideas on what trip we like to go on next. However, we must remain to be vigilant. We must follow the area’s government protocols, such as ensuring a health certificate, swab test or rapid test, and everything else needed before going on a trip.

Instead of going to malls and accumulating the virus, why not bond with a close friend or loved one with nature around. Whatever activity we may do, always choose to do the adventure with precaution!

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