What to pack for the Otter Trail

While we were planning our Otter Trail Trip I found it quite difficult to think of everything that we would need. So, to make it easier I have made a list of everything you would need for your Otter Trail adventure :). PS: this list could also be used for any other extended Hiking Trip.

Packing List:
  • A good pair of hiking shoes (I decided to use my Nike Running Shoes- luckily they lasted the whole trip. Looking back I would rather go for professional Hiking Boot as my Nikes didn’t have enough grip so I struggled when we had to climb the rocks and walk on wet surfaces)
  • Water Shoes (These came in handy for the river crossings. When it rained I wore these to keep my walking shoes dry)
  • Flip Flops (The best for comfort at your camp- after wearing closed shoes all day, the last thing you want to do is wear closed shoes at your camp. These also came in handy to wear in the shower)
  • First Aid Kit (Definitely a must-have. Luckily we didn’t need ours during the trip)
  • Toiletries (Toothbrush, Toothpaste, Sunblock, After Sun, etc… Just remember that toiletries are generally quite heavy- try to buy smaller containers)
  • Matches/ Lighter (Preferably pack two or three)
  • Fire Lighters
  • Waterproof bag for Backpack (This is extremely crucial for your trip. You will need this for the river crossings- we literally had to float our bags with us as we swam across the river. We bought the large heavy duty “body bag” which tore on the rocks as we crossed the river. Water got into our backpacks and everything got wet- this was a total disaster.  Please ensure that you buy the proper bag for river crossings)
  • Cell Phone (Switch this off and place in a waterproof bag. This is a good idea to take in case of an emergency. If you have to take an emergency exit during your trip you will have to phone the rescue vehicle to fetch you.)
  • Flash Light (We took head lamps as well as flash lights. I highly recommend taking a headlamp)
  • 3 x pairs of walking pants (I used legging type exercise pants. I prefer these as you wont get scratched or sunburned. However most people wore shorts. I did take 2x pairs of shorts to wear at the camps)
  • 4 x t-shirts (Try to avoid 100% cotton here as it will be hot and absorbent)
  • 5 x sets of Underwear
  • 5 x pairs of Socks (Avoid ankle socks- I find that these often make you get blisters)
  • Rain Coat (ensure that your raincoat is 100% waterproof. Most raincoats are water resistant. This was difficult to find in SA.)
  • Fleece Sweater (It gets quite chilly at night)
  • Beanie (Optional- I slept with my beanie on for extra warmth)
  • Cap (For extra protection from the sun)
  • Sunglasses
  • Gas cylinder and Nozzle (To cook your food. We bought a 190g cylinder and we still had lots of gas left after the trip)
  • Mosquito repellent
  • Pocket Knife
  • Rope (We used this for the river crossings)
  • Carabiners [Hiking Clips] (Very handy)
  • Pots/ Pans (Lightweight camping set)
  • Cups (For coffee, water, etc…)
  • Cutlery (We just took a spork each)
  • Hiking pole (This is not a necessity, but I loved having one. If you have knee or ankle problems, I would recommend this)
  • Zip-lock Plastic packets (We put everything into these packets. This will help in-case your bag gets wet, this should help to keep everything inside dry.)
  • Sleeping Bag (We have a double one- which I love)
  • Pillow case (I put some clothes in here and made a pillow for us at night. This worked quite well for some extra comfort)
  • Cable ties (One of our bags broke so we used these to fix it.)
  • Water purification tablets (To avoid getting sick from un-drinkable water)
  • Buff (For the girls- trust me you will be glad you took this :P)
  • Costume (some great rock pools and beaches to have a swim- if you can brave the cold water)
  • Towel (We took the light weight Microfiber towels)
  • A good Book (This is the perfect time to catch up on some reading)
  • Cards (For some entertainment at night)
  • Binoculars (Some great sights along the way)
  • Rain Cover for Bag
  • Bladder for water
  • Camera (Don’t forget this one- the photo opportunities are endless here)



Author: tamsin

As a South African, I have always been interested in discovering all the beauty that our diverse country has to offer. My greatest passion has always been Travel and Adventure. I believe that life begins at the end of your comfort zone and recently I have started to undertake a series of life changes and challenges. Keep following my blog to keep up to date and follow me and my little family on our series of adventures.

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