Enjoy Happy Trails, the free monthly newsletter from Hiking For Her

Top Hiking Resources
You Can Use Today
To Make Hiking Plans

By Diane Spicer

The best hiking resources in 11 categories give you all the tips you need to hike. #hikingresources #hikingtips #backpacking #hikingforher #femalehikers

The best hiking resources are what you need to become a confident hiker.

The best hiking checklists, guidebooks, and websites come from hikers who have gotten wet, dirty, lost, sore - and lived to tell the tale.

That pretty much describes Hiking For Her!

So why suffer?

Shorten your learning curve as a hiker with these extensive hiking resources and essential recommendations from an expert hiker.

Explore these hiking resources categories

Reliable resources for hikers have to go beyond the expected hiking resource information, info you would expect like:

What do you say we go way beyond that!

Because you're an adventurous hiker, right?

Jump right in with these links to tried and true Hiking For Her hiking resources in eleven categories:

#1: Save time and money

Although hiking is not the most expensive sport you can enjoy, your gear list can make a ding in your hiking budget if you're not careful.

Here are the best current deals for hikers, ranging from day hiking to backpacking to car camping to adventure vacations and classes.

This resource is kept up to date and features only the best of the best deals for hikers. It includes gear, clothing and companies I use myself for comfort and safety on the trail.

#2: Hiking motivation and inspiration

Maybe you're a beginner hiker.

  • Tips just for you can be found here

Or maybe you're just getting back into the wonderful sport of hiking after a lengthy absence such as an injury or major life change.

  • You might need a little motivation, and a trail buddy or two, inspiring you to hit the trail more often.

Not sure why hiking is a good idea?

  • Check out these 4 answers to the Why Hike question.

This category of the best hiking resources gives you exactly what you need to be prepared for the realities of any hiking trail.

Need a hiking partner?

It can be tough to find reliable people to hike with.

And sometimes your schedule doesn't match up with your regular hiking partners.

Find someone to hike with using these tips.

One additional hiking resource for meeting other people who share your passion for the trail is the huge list of REI classes.

Topics only female hikers care about

What about "female only" hiking topics?

Women hikers have hygiene issues more complex than keeping the T.P. dry. {Although that's a legitimate concern!}

We also have physical limitations involving our unique hip & knee structures.

And we certainly have a different mindset about overcoming obstacles: brute force and stubbornness have their place but so does finesse and trail smarts.

Female hikers may also use the sport of hiking for a specific purpose.

  • If you're hiking for weight loss, read these tips.
  • Getting your kids out for a hike? Go here for resources.
  • Hiking in a group can lead to romance, friendship and off trail collaborations.
  • Night hiking can open up an entirely new dimension for you.
  • Spend time with your female bestie on a hike!
  • Give your athletic dog a good workout on your next hike.
  • Go solo for some well deserved solitude.

Get inspired by outdoor women!

You can also get to know some inspiring women who are doing great things in the world of outdoorsy women.

  • Meet some famous female hikers here.
  • Check out Hiking For Her's Pinterest page on Hiking Women: Then And Now.

Need some hiking inspiration and humor?

Who doesn't!

Enjoy 14 quotes I've collected (and written) over the years.

They keep me going, maybe they'll bring a smile or an empathetic groan to you as well!

The best hiking infographics sum up tips so you can pin them for later.

These are a major part of the fun of these hiking resources!

A few questions to motivate any hiker

Have you spent any time lately identifying and developing your hiking skills?

Feeling confident in your outdoor skills will motivate you to try bigger, longer hikes.

There are plenty of free online hiking resources out there to choose from when building and strengthening your outdoor skills.

Wouldn't it be fun to dabble a bit until you find a topic you'd really like to devote some serious time to?

And then to test out your skills in the backcountry?

Or some really incredible best hiking destinations?

Good times await! So why wait?

Use the hiking resources
on this website for your hiking plans

Always hit the trail with the very best information to motivate you to be your best self.

It's what makes a smart female hiker so... well, smart!

Use the search box at the top of the page to find the hiking topics you want to explore with reliable resources.

Feel free to ask me hiking questions and expect a detailed answer.

Use the hiking resources mentioned in the Hiking For Her Hiking Questions Archive.

#3: Best hiking trails

The best hiking trails are highly coveted by hikers.

But every hiker hikes her own hike, so what's best for you might not check all the boxes as a great hiking trail for me.

To find the best hiking trails for your hiking plans, think about terrain, distance, elevation gain and loss, weather, signage.

Here are general things to think about.

Take a peek (peak?) here for making sense of how to find the best hiking trails for your type of hiking.

Mount Rainier hiking is not to be missed!

  • Trail descriptions, insider tips, and videos of some of the best Mount Rainier day hikes await you at that link.
  • Three of my favorite day hikes are described here.

Please use Leave No Trace principles to keep those trails in top shape for the next hiker.

Female hiker gazing at Mount RainierThere she is, beautiful Mount Rainier!

#4: Books for hikers

Best books on hiking: where to start?

It depends on your level of comfort with approaching trail time.

The Hiking For Her book on day hiking tips might be the perfect place to start!

How about day hikes to Washington fire lookouts?

  • Read the Hiking For Her review here.
  • Or learn how to find lost fire lookouts with this review.

Here's a recent book review on a woman's journey along the Continental Divide Trail to get you started thinking about a long trail hike.

Another fascinating topic: how to explore Europe on foot, detailed in this book review.

Or read about Emma Gatewood, an AT pioneer, in this children's version of her life story (a fun way to introduce children to the trail).

Interested in hiking Wisconsin's Ice Age Trail?

  • Read my review of one woman's adventure here.

Longing to hike in the Pacific Northwest?

  • Find my review of an Alpine Lakes Wilderness Guide here.

Fascinated by birds and trees you encounter on the trail?

Wondering what Great Smoky Mountains National Park hiking is like?

Another book review to savor: 1001 Ways To Live Wild.

  • Great title, plenty of inspiration for making the most of your one wild life.

Ready to think about hiking destinations all over the world?

Do you want to meet over 30 seasoned hiking women?

And here are a few humble suggestions of other books which have been pivotal in my hiking career.

More hiking resources:
#5: Best movies for hikers

Don't forget hiking movies!!

Backpacking movies can

  • inspire 
  • amaze
  • tantalize
  • scare you into hiking best practices

Not to mention entertain you during the months when your favorite hiking trails are inaccessible.

And they can act as wonderful hiking resources for your upcoming trips.

Here are a few of my favorites, the first about hiking the John Muir Trail, the other about the Pacific Crest Trail experience:

Mile, Mile and a Half

and Tell It On The Mountain: Tales From The PCT

Need more info on "Tell It"? Here's my full review.

And be sure to enjoy this collection of thruhiking documentaries.

Best hiking resources for dayhiking and backpacking #hiking #hikingtips #hikingresources #backpacking #besthikingtips #womenhikers #womenwhohike #hikingforher

#6: Gear tips & review hiking resources

Find the best hiking boots and packs, as well as women's hiking clothing with these links.

  • If you're searching for just the right piece of hiking gear at a rock bottom price, take a peek at my tried and true line up of discount gear outlets.

Before you purchase a big ticket item like a tent, read this hiking resource for suggestions about sizing up exactly what you need!

Or maybe you're struggling to find the perfect pair of hiking boots - use these tips on hiking boots reviews!

You can find all of my thorough hiking gear reviews here.

  • I strive to give you balanced information so you can make an intelligent decision about the gear you need versus the gear you want.

The reviews will help you build your day hike checklist

Then use that checklist to generate a gear checklist that will take you on longer trips, such as overnights or backpacking trips.

And you might want to dip frequently into my best hiking tips so you can use your gear for maximal benefits.

  • You know, like staying dry, sleeping soundly in a tent, all that fun stuff.

Let a hiking expert lend a hand

Sometimes you don't want to have to think through every little detail about a new piece of hiking gear or athletic clothing for the trail.

That's when using this list of Hiking For Her brand recommendations will save you time, money and effort, while highlighting the best hiking footwear and clothing.

  • This is the stuff that comes along on every HFH hike, because it works.

And this is the top hiking and camping gear that has won awards AND passed the Hiking For Her inspection!

If you're a backpacker, or plan to become one, you're going to need camping equipment as well as some navigation and safety gear.

  • Feel free to use my detailed hiking equipment list as a resource guide for planning your future backpacking adventures.
  • I invite you to take my How To Plan A Backpacking Trip course, getting you on the trail with no worries. Details here.

Interested in solo hiking?

A solo female hiker needs an extra level of preparation, to reassure those at home that she's in good hands - her own!

Use these tips to get started down the solo trail:

Want to rent before you buy?

You have several good options!

Rent only the pieces of equipment you need for hiking, backpacking or camping from your REI Co-op rental department.

  • Pick up your gear, enjoy it, and then return it after your trip.

Try out premium outdoor brands for camping or backpacking, delivered to your door by Arrive.

  • Talk with them over the phone to get your gear dialed in just right before it's sent to you.
  • Use the prepaid label to send it back when you're done!
Female hiker holding backpack on a hiking trail

Need the best gear and hiking clothing guides?

Of course you do!

Here they are:

#7: Gifts for hikers

Hint: You want to create a "best hiking gifts wish list" to leave lying around (in)conspicuously.

Here's a good start, along with this gift guide.

I also created a guide for inexpensive but highly coveted gifts for hikers.

And a gift giving guide for non-hikers! So they have no excuse about what to give the hikers in the family, and will have fun watching the happy smiles.

If you're looking for responsibly sourced green outdoor products and clothing, look no further than Hiking For Her's Sustainable Gifting Guide.

And here's a hiking gift guide focused on self care for your hard working hiker!

Those should keep you busy for awhile ;)

#8: Magazines for hikers

Magazines (that link details the ones pitched at hikers and campers) are great places to get a monthly (daily??) trail fix when the weather is too nasty, or your schedule is too brutal, to get outside.

Autorenewal is the way to go if you don't want to miss an issue (and have to buy it at newstand prices).

#9: Good general hiking resources

New to hiking?

Here's a good general resource to get you started, aptly called the American Hiking Society.

Or you can read some of my essential backpacking tips for beginners here.

I sincerely hope you find this entire website a good general hiking resource, and don't forget that you can contact me with your specific questions.

Did you know that hikers have trail etiquette? Miss Manners does!

  • Find out all the details here.

#10: Hiking blogs to follow

While magazines and movies are great, don't overlook hiking blogs.

What a great way to eavesdrop on other hikers' thoughts!

And when they throw in photos of their hikes, it's almost as good as being there.

My advice?

  • Follow just one or two for a few months to see if you're a philosophical match.
  • Keep searching for a handful of inspirational blogs that motivate and inspire you to be your best trail self.

#11: Special interest hiking resources

Special interests lure each of us onto the trail.

What do I mean?

Here's an example:

I've met hikers who love to hone their bushcraft skills.

  • Knot tying falls into this category.  Try this resource to get started on knots! If you like animations, here's exactly what you need for knot tying. (Thanks to Karen for these suggestions.)
  • Others want to be able to identify alpine flowers not only for their beauty, but their medicinal value.

Outdoor lore is the term I use to cover all of the things that fascinate me about the outdoors: botany, animal tracking, geology.

  • Here are some resources to explore if you really want to know what's right in front of you on the trail (or what might be lurking up ahead).

Another example of a special interest is curiosity about exploring a particular terrain.

Do you ever wonder what it would be like to hike in the opposite type of conditions from your usual hiking trails?

For me in the soggy Pacific Northwest, the opposite would be desert hiking in Arizona.

But could I really leave behind my waterproof rain gear and lighten up a little?

Would I miss the towering Douglas firs and glaciers?

  • It might be fun to answer that question! 
  • In fact, here's the HFH trail report on New Mexico hiking.

#12: Fun hiking resources

Fun hiking stuff!!

'Cuz if it's not fun, why do it?

  • Learn how yoga and hiking go together beautifully to keep you strong and flexible.
  • Take a few solo hiking quizzes to explore the idea of going it alone on the trail.
  • New sources of information, trail wisdom or a fun new spin on the reality of the hiking trail are found in my free monthly newsletter. Sign up is easy... spam is unheard of, unsubscribe at any time with one click:

Bonus round!!

A few more fun hiking resources that I pulled together for you:

Female hiker enjoying a view of Mt. Adams in Washington State, USAI'm always on the look out for useful hiking resources for you

There you have it!
Twelve categories filled with
the best hiking resources

The hiking community is small, but it's mighty.

Thanks for being part of it.

You might like to read these next!

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