hiking compas

Is it a must to get the best compass for hiking when you intend to go hiking? Well, when you are hiking or going to an area that has not been touched by humans much, sometimes you need a good compass. It can be said that a compass is one of the most important things to bring besides hiking clothes and the others. You can know the cardinal directions and read the map properly with a compass. There are also people who use compasses to find out feng shui or determine the direction of the Qibla.

However, the various choices of compasses often make us confused in choosing them. Especially with the many popular brands. Therefore, this time we will provide tips on choosing a compass and recommend the ten best compasses for you.

Choose a compass based on the magnetic compass needle

There are three types of compasses that are generally known, namely wet magnetic, dry magnetic and digital compasses. Each type of compass has its own price range and advantages. Therefore, first confirm the characteristics of each type.

Wet magnetic compass, the compass needle is more stable

Wet magnetic compass generally uses oil or liquid in it. However, because of the more frequent use of oil, this wet magnetic type compass is often called an oil compass. The use of fluids in the compass makes the compass needle unshaken and stable. So, you can immediately know the cardinal directions when you need it.

However, the viscosity of the liquid inside the compass can change depending on the temperature around you. Temperature that is too cold can cause the liquid to freeze. Due to its limited temperature, you cannot always use this compass. If you plan to camp in very cold places, avoid using a wet magnetic compass.

Dry magnetic compass, can be taken anywhere

Dry magnetic compass does not use the liquid inside. The compass needle is supported by a pin which allows it to rotate freely. This type of compass is the most commonly found and the price is not too expensive.

When compared to a wet magnetic compass, it will be more difficult for you to determine the direction when using this compass. This is because the compass needle rotates more easily and tends to be less stable. However, this dry magnetic type compass is not affected by the ambient temperature because there is no liquid in it. Therefore, you can use it in various fields of travel.

Digital compass, more informative and easy to use

The digital compass does not use magnets to detect the earth’s magnetic field, but uses sensors that are in the device. Today, many smartphones have been equipped with this digital compass.

The advantage of this compass is that it is easy to understand and easy to use. Meanwhile, the only drawback is that it can’t be used if the battery runs out. If you need the compass for a long time and can’t charge the battery, do not use a digital compass.

Adjust the compass model to your needs

Each best compass for hiking has a variety of models. There are three general types of compasses of this type. Choose the compass model that suits your needs.

gps watch
GPS Watch

Ordinary compass, practical and easy to use

This is the simple compass that is most often found. Although the accuracy is not as high as a baseplate and lensatic compass, you can get this compass at an affordable price. In addition, this compass is also sufficient to meet the need to know the direction of the wind or the Qibla in your home. Some even use it to read feng shui when building a house.

This compass can also be carried very practically. You can make it a key chain or wear it like a necklace. However, to deal with the unexpected, when climbing a mountain for example, you should bring a baseplate or lensatic compass.

Baseplate compass, to read the map more accurately

The baseplate compass is a compass placed on a transparent scale board. Often referred to as the map compass, this compass is most often used when hiking or trekking.

There is a capsule ring that can rotate on a 360 degree scale. With this, you can know the direction of the destination with accuracy. Also, you can place it on the map because the base is transparent. You can also calculate the distance to your point of interest on the map with the scale written on this compass board.

Lensatic compass, can aim at the direction of the goal more accurately

This compass is often referred to as the aiming compass. One of the characteristics of the lensatic compass is that it is equipped with a magnifying lens and a cover. There is a small hole located on the cover of the compass. By looking at your destination from this hole, you will get an accurate direction of aim. The lens contained in this compass is used to see the small scale written in the compass to get more accurate results.

Previous use of the lensatic compass was only intended for military activities. However, now it is widely used by civil society to carry out various outdoor activities. This compass has the extraordinary ability to immediately find out your position when you get lost on a mountain. However, this compass is a little difficult to use if you are not used to it.

Which is the best hiking compass?

Although a compass has many types, not all of them have great features for hiking. So, when choosing the best compass, you also should choose based on:

Accuracy and speed: the greatest compass for hiking has a magnetized needle properly. It is capable to give you quickly stable directions. The compass speed may not matter even in good climatic or daylight. But, it is approaching when a trom or night helps you find the bearings fast. 

Durability: it is the most wonderful advantage that you actually should get when using the greatest hiking compass. If the compass is your main device of navigation, you exactly need the sturdy one. While you fiddle around with a map and compass, it is perfectly possible you may have many things on your hands. It is very high to meet a chance when you let your compass go accidentally. So, the best compass of hiking actually can survive well even a few drops without having big damage.

Features: The best compass for hiking has many great features which can help you get the most accurate distance and direction consistently. It may include features of convenience like clinometer, adjustment of declination, magnifier or features of accuracy-augmenting like sighting lens, sighting mirror, and the others.

Budget: Whatever compass of hiking you will invest in, basically, you must find the best value for your own money. Of course, the budget should fit with speed, accuracy, feature, and durability. 

Those are everything that you should know to get the best compass for hiking. 

Hiking is probably one of the most exciting activities in the world. There are a lot of reasons why hiking has become so popular these days. Well, people prefer to go outside and breathe in the fresh natural air. It is a refreshing activity to do, especially if you decide to do both camping and hiking at the same time. The United States is a country with a lot of sceneries, especially for the mountains, hills, gorges, and more. It is a famous country for hikers, especially if they decide on hiking in Ohio. So, here are some best places to hike in the state of Ohio. 

Buckeye Trail

I picked Buckeye Trail on the first list because I found it quite surprising. Well, I can say that this Buckeye Trail is actually a 1.444 miles trail, and it is encircling over the state of Ohio. Well, that is very surprising, and if you decide to travel over the state of Ohio, bring some camping equipment too. This will make your hiking more challenging. 

So, Buckeye Trail divided into 26 sections, and they were named after a community or some kind of feature. When you are deciding to hike in this trail, just follow the blue blazes. They were painted or marked over the tree and poles to make sure that hikers won’t get lost and stay on the track. Oh, yeah, also, don’t forget to bring your best compass for hiking. Well, just in case. 

For the recommended sections for every level of hikers is the Queer Creek Trail and Hocking Hills State Park near the South Bloomingville. If you want something challenging, you can go for Jaite to Boston through the Buckeye Trail in Cuyahoga Valley National Park. 

Brecksville Reservation

In the downtown of Cleveland, around 30 minutes to the south, you will find yourself the Brecksville Reservation. It is actually the largest Metropark in the region. There are many hiking trails in the Brecksville Reservation, including the Buckeye Trail. In addition, there are golf courses and an archery range if you are interested in other activities other than hiking in Ohio. 

One of the popular hikes that you might want to try is the All-Purpose Trail and Hemlock Loop Trail. The distance is only 2.6 miles, and it is looping as well in the Chippewa Creek Gorge Scenic Overlook. Something challenging? Well, you probably want to try the Deer Lick Cave Trail that is 4.2 miles. There’s a lot of bucks if you are lucky to see one in there. 

Best Camping Gear
Best Camping Gear

Ohio and Erie Canal Towpath Trail

This trail’s length is around 87 miles, and it starts from New Philadelphia to Cleveland. Also, this trail is actually multipurpose. So, it’s not just hikers that went on this trail. You probably see other people with different purposes, such as runners, cyclists, and even horse riders. Wildlife lovers went to this trail too. So, this one is pretty recommended because the Towpath is very accessible, even for people with disabilities. 

Cuyahoga Valley National Park

Cuyahoga Valley National Park is located between Cleveland and Akron. The forest in this National park is very lush, with a lot of deep gorges and the flank-crashing waterfalls. 

Well, in this National Park, you will find the Buckeye Trail and the Towpath Trail, but there are other trails as well. For the length, it could take more than 125 miles. It is pretty long. However, it is still recommended for any level of hikers, especially if you only want just to explore the woods or historic buildings. If you want something shorter, then the Ledges Trail is probably recommended because the length is only 2.2 miles, and it is a trail in the Cuyahoga Park. Something “more” shorter? Try the Brandywine Gorge Trail Loop. The length is 1.7 miles, but it is probably for moderate level hikers. 

Hocking Hills State Park

If you want to see a lot of sandstones, then the Hocking Hills State Park is quite recommended for you. Well, there is a cave that is popular as a hiking destination called the Rock House. You can access it in the Rock House Trail that lengthed only 0.9 miles. Apparently, there were native Americans that used to live in the Rock House. You probably can notice some hominy holes around the back wall. They used it to cook their food. 

Other than the Rock House, there is also a popular hiking spot in the section of Buckeye Trail, which is the Old Man’s Cave. The Old Man’s Cave referred to a hermit named Richard Rowe. He lived in the cave during the late 1700s, and he was buried in the ledge of the main recess. 

John Bryan State Park

In the east of Dayton, around 30 minutes, you will find a State Park that covers 752 hectares. It is called John Bryan State Park. No Worry, this park is actually friendly for pets, so bring your dogs along. Not just that, you can also do some camping, fishing, rock climbing, hiking, and cycling. 

If you want an easy and relaxing hike, you probably want to try the John L. Rich Trail and the North Rim Trail Loop. However, if you want something more challenging than those two, you should try the Pittsburg-Cincinnati Stagecoach and the South Gorge Loop. It is for moderate level hikers with a length of around 4.4 miles. The path followed the river, and it does include the waterfall as well. 

Clear Creek Metropark

This is probably the last. There is a trail in the Clear Creek Metropark called the Lake Trail. You are very recommended to hike in this trail during the autumn seasons. The length of this trail is only 0.9 miles, but it is for a moderate level of hikers. However, this dirt path trail is actually worth hiking because you can enjoy the beautiful Lake Ramona. The lake can’t be missed if you decide on hiking in Ohio during autumn. I’m sure that you won’t forget or regret it.

Hiking preparations for women

Austin is blessed with great weather perfect for various outdoor activities including hiking. This capital city of Texas has a lot of gorgeous parks and gardens to explore by hikers, both professionals, and beginners. Not to mention the amazing natural views and wildlife offered. From easy to hard levels, you can pick up the one suitable the most with your needs. So, what are you waiting for? Lace-up your sneakers and go for Austin hiking in one of the following trekking spots. 

#1. Mount Bonnell

Mount Bonnell is popular among hikers for many good reasons. The mountain has gorgeous spots for selfies. It offers an easy to a moderate-hiking level that even somebody without hiking experience can accomplish the hiking trek. However, you need to prepare your stamina when hiking to Mount Bonnell. There will be 102 steps that you have to go through to reach the summit. With 775 feet of height, Mount Bonnel will provide you with the gorgeous views of the cities around the mountain.

#2. Mayfield Nature Preserve

This one of the best hiking spots in Austin to help you escape from a stressful week for a while. Mayfield is not only a great place for hiking but it is also popular for its amazing wandering peacocks and cottage. This is one of the reasons why Mayfield is also famous for a wedding venue. Coming to Mayfield Nature Preserve, you will find over 24 acres of area to be explored. This includes a hiking trek that will take you to a dock that overlooks the gorgeous Lake Austin. Not only that but exploring the nature preserve will also allow you to find some wonderful small lily ponds that become the home of many protected turtles. 

#3. Blunn Creek Preserve

Blunn Creek Preserve is another great spot on the list best for Austin hiking. Unlike most hiking treks located in the urban areas of Austin, Blunn Creek Preserve is situated in the middle of the city. Being at the highest point of the preserved area, you can enjoy the gorgeous views of the downtown part of Austin and the famous St. Edward University. Passing through the hiking trek, you will be treated with a few amazing creek crossings, gorgeous rocky terrain, and refreshing canopied thickets of trees. It is an ideal place to come if you are looking for some peace in the crowded Austin. Make sure that you also come to Big Stacy Pool after visiting Blunn Creek Preserve. Here, you can soak your body in the freshwater of the pool after hours of hiking.

#4. McKinney Falls State Park 

If you have had experiences of hiking in Nashville, you must be familiar with Cummins Falls State Park Hike. It is a great place for hiking in Tennessee. Austin also has a state park with nearly a similar landscape feature with Cummins Falls. McKinney Falls State Park also has a swimming hole that becomes the favorite of visitors. Located on the border of Austin, this state park is a dream of every hiker. McKinney Falls is the only state park in Austin and it comes with a three-trail system. This will allow you to pick up an adventure that meets your needs the most. For instance, you can explore Thomas McKinney’s stone house and gristmill if you take the Homestead Trail. If you want to have more private hiking experience, the Rock Shelter Trail can be one of the best options to take. But, you might consider taking the Onion Creek Trail and Bike Trail if you travel with your children. This trail system is stroller-friendly so that your kids can hike in comfort.

Hiking Club
Hiking Club

#5. Wild Basin Wilderness Preserve

This preserved area will provide you an easy-level or hiking trek. Wild Basin Wilderness Preserve is located not too far from the Capitol of Texas Highway, making it easy to access. Wild Basin is only 2,5 miles and the views are wonderful. This hiking spot is also a great place to educate your children about nature and wildlife. It has a bird-watching station and other educational attractions such as a microscope station. Not only that but there will be a staff from St. Edward University that will explain everything you need to know about the natural wildlife in Wild Basin. Walking through the preserved area will take you to Bee Creek. The place is famous for its gorgeous waterfall and the breathtaking view around it. One of the best things about trekking in Wild Basin is that you can find preserved golden-cheeked warblers along the path. 

Hiking Trails Near Me That You Must Visit

#6. River Place Nature Trail

River Place is considered one of the most challenging Austin hiking spots. It comes with three different trails to challenge your adrenaline. You will need to go through a series of waterfalls with a challenging route if you pick up the Fern Trail. Meanwhile, selecting the Canyon Trail will lead you to pass a challenging set of steps along with a few scattered benches and some wonderful rock formations. Last but not least in Panther Hollow. This trail is the longest in River Place and is considered the most challenging. It requires you to use more energy to ascend the hiking trek. However, Panther Hollow offers a more restful trip once you descend the trek if compared to the two previous trails. 

#7. Mary Moore Searight Park

Make sure that you watch your step when you hike to Mary Moore Searight Park since it is easy to get lost there. However, many hikers find it interesting and challenging. That is why Mary Moore Searight Park is popular among hikers. Here, you can find accommodations that are commonly available in a park. These include a playground, a disc golf course, and basketball courts, providing more recreation options. Meanwhile, trekking through oak and juniper woodlands of Mary Moore Searight Park will allow you to enjoy a different experience of hiking.

Gravelstuff, Dispersed Camping, hiking trails 

hiking in ireland

When it comes to hiking options, Ireland hits above its weight well. This country has 954 developed trails all over the place. From Belfast to the coast of Rock, you will not run out of options. Can’t decide where to start hiking in Ireland? Here are the best hiking spots in the country to narrow down your option. 

1. Cuilcagh Legnabrocky Trail

Meaning “stairway to heaven”, Cuilcah Legnabrocky trail is the best place to go if you need an easy to the moderate track for hiking. This is one of the largest bogged areas in Northern Ireland and spread out up to 4.6 miles. Being publicly opened for the first time in 2015, Cuilcagh Legnabrocky Trail has attracted a lot of hikers. Here, you need to climb up a steep to take you to the summit of Cuilcagh Mountain with 2,185ft of height.  

2. Ballycotton Cliff Walk, Cork

Ballycotton Cliff Walk is a great option to take especially if you are a beginner. Being extended up to 8 miles, this hiking trek starts from Ballycotton Village and ends in Ballyandreen Beach. Stepping to the hiking track, you will be amazed by the views of fresh green meadows on one side and the wild Atlantic Ocean on the other side. If you get tired, there will be a lot of seated viewpoints where you can rest while enjoying the beautiful scenery around the trek. Ballycotton Cliff Work in Cork is also a perfect place to go if you want to enjoy wildlife watching. Here, you can find a lot of amazing creatures such as dolphins, whales, oystercatchers, and Peregrine Falcons along the hiking trek.

3. Glenariff Forest Park Scenic Trail

If you are looking for a great place for a moderate level of hiking in Ireland, Glenariff Forest Park Scenic Trail in Co Antrim is one of the best options to take. The hiking trek is 6 miles long and starts/ ends at Glenariff Forest Park. Exploring the forest park will need you to go through in the mossy depths of a ravine with a beautiful waterfall to reach the Antrim Plateau. Climbing up to the edge of the plateau will allow you to see a wonderful view of the high landscape of the Glenariff Forest Park with the sea of Scotland as the background. You can even enjoy a more fun reward if you go hiking to the forest park during spring. The beautiful bluebells will bloom around the Inver River gorge and welcome you at the starting point of the hiking trek.

4. Divis and the Black Mountain Ridge Trail

Being located in Belfast, Divis and the Balck Mountain ridge trail is for moderate-level hikers. Standing on the 1,568ft of altitude, Divis is considered the highest point of Belfast Hills. This landscape situation will provide you with the most ideal vantage point to see the spectacular views of Belfast. This ridge trail comes with circular-walk slopes that will take you to the summit of Blak Mountain and the famous Bobby Stone. Take the globally well-known Harland and Wolffs cranes to see the breathtaking views of Stormont and Titanic Belfast. You can even see the entire Belfast from this high point when the weather is fine.

5. Carrauntoohil Hike

Carrauntoohil Hike is one of the hardest hiking treks with only a few places on earth such as Austin hiking that has an almost similar trail. With a trekking distance as long as 7.9 miles this hiking path starts and ends at the famous Cronin’s Yard. As the central park peak of MacGillycuddy’s Reeks, Carrauntoohil stands at 3.407ft and becomes the highest mountain range of Ireland. Reaching the top of the Carrauntoohil is not easy and it usually takes 5 to 6 hours. However, you will get your treat once you get to the peak. Here, you will see jaw-dropping views of Killarney Lakes. You will have several route options when hiking the Carrauntoohil trek with the Devil’s Ladder as the most popular one. This hiking route comes with loose rocks that are considered challenging for most hikers.

6. Slieve Gullion

Slieve Gullion is a perfect hiking trek to go if you also love to learn about the ancient history of Ireland. Ascending to the top of the Slieve Gullion Forest Park, you will find twin peaks, twin lakes, and a Neolithic passage grave. Not only that but this 8-mile trek will also offer you a moderate level of hiking with the spectacular views of Northern Ireland and the Republic. Exploring the heather-clocked hills of Slieve Gullion, you will also enjoy the great views of the famous Ring of Gullion. It is a volcano known to erupt for the last time more than 50 million years ago. Hiking through the trek of Slieve Gullion will allow you to get into the ancient tomb of the Neolithic South Cairn Passage Grave that you can access from beneath the summit.

7. Glendalough and the Spinc Cliffs

It is a hard hiking trek that spreads out as far as 8.5 miles. This Glendalough and the Spinc Cliffs trek both start and end at Glendalough Visitor Center. The hilly trail comes with a great view and it is also the home of mountainous paths and landscapes with 2,000 hectares of length. 

8. The Causeway Coast

The Causeway Coast is another popular place for hiking in Ireland located in Co Antrim. This easy-level hiking trek starts from Giant’s Causeway and ends at Dunseverick Castle. The Causeway Coast has been known as one of the best coastal walks in Ireland with a trekking path as far as 4.5 miles. Getting to the end of the hiking trek, you will need to go through some popular tourist spots in Ireland including Portstewart, Ballycastle, and Dunluce Castle. The Causeway Coast is rich in history, mythology, and geological wonder. Though it is an easy trek, the rocky shoreline that you should pass makes the path a bit challenging.

Gravelstuff, Dispersed Camping, hiking trails 

If you want to know how to handle yourself when Hiking in the Rain, then you can check this article. Finding out how to stay comfortable and dry in bad weather is one of the necessary trail skills. You do not know when you will get caught in the storm, and if you live in the rainy climate, then having the confidence to hike in the rain can avoid you get serious fever in the wet season. You should know that the right mindset and hiking gear, then hiking in the rain can be so fun as well. 

In this article, there are several tips on how to hike in the rain that help you to enjoy your outdoor experience, no matter what the climate is. You will surprise by choosing the right rain gear, helpful information, and a positive attitude, then you can get outside and have fun even in the wettest days as well. 

You should choose the right trail 

Choosing a location where to hike in the rain is the first step to get a successful hike.  During rainy days, you will see an extensive view, so the summit hike is not your best choice, Instead, exploring the trail through the forest, alongside a lake, river, and waterfall. These trails are the best option for wet days because they usually do not have an extensive viewpoint, so you will never feel missing out. You can consider what you expect on that day to narrow down your choice. For example, whether you are looking for relaxation or exercise? Whether you are solo hiking or with friends? So, what you are looking for will help you to decide where to go. 

If you are looking for exercise and it is very wet outside, it is better to choose a trail that is not steep so you can exercise without any risk of slipping. If you want to relax, it is better to choose a trail that meanders through the forest so you can enjoy the rain sound that is so relaxing.

No matter what you choose, deciding a shorter trail that can be done in a few hours or a half-day. Therefore, if the weather turns south, then you are not too far away from the trailhead. So, it is better to read the rail first before you head out. It is necessary if the view is skewed, you need to make sure your bearings, so you never get lost. If it is very steep, or there are creeks to ford, then the best time is to wait for the dry day. This same thing goes for thunderstorms. 

For an added safety measure, you can consider bringing a satellite communicator as a handy device with SOS, texting, and tracking capabilities. If you have a plan to hike in the area with the spotty cell service, it can be your life-saving device when you are in an emergency. 

What to wear when you hiking in the rain 

You can choose the right gear that needs a balance to keep you warm and dry, but it is cool enough, so you never get sweaty. It means that you can wear a breathable, waterproof rain jacket and some lightweight waterproof hiking pants as well. 

Choosing the right raining jacket 

You can invest in a high-quality, and a durable rain jacket and hiking clothes that can withstand harsh conditions means that you will be likely to go out during these rainy days. The technology of rain jackets has advanced over the years, and understanding all bells and whistles can make you a bit overwhelming as well.

It’s all depending on what type of hiking you want to do, not all technical features should get in your gear, but some features will enhance your experience. So, it is better to highlight several things that you have to pay attention to. 

You can consider rain jackets with armpit zips – these jackets will make a significant difference in your comfort level and allow you to hike during the rain without getting you too sweaty. Another thing that you have to know is that you do not need a too tight or too loose rain jacket. You may need to wear layers, so you need a space for it. 

Hiking jacket

Choosing waterproof hiking shoes 

This is a big letdown if you need to turn around because your feet get wet. One of the keys to getting a successful hike in the rain is the waterproof footwear. Waterproof hiking shoes are the game changer if you hike in the heavy rain. Although you may feel comfortable wearing lighter and lower ankle shoes, when you are hiking in the rain, then it is better to choose a higher ankle boot. It gives you ankle support during slippery trails and keeps water out better as well. 

If you already have hiking boots, mostly your shoes are waterproof, but you need to check before running out to buy new shoes for hiking in the rain. You need to pack an extra pair of wool just in case your feet get wet. 

Waterproof hiking pants 

When it comes to choosing rain hiking pants, then you can choose breathable, comfortable, and waterproof hiking pants. It is also better to select rain pants with a zipper at the bottom so you can wear or take it off without needing to remove your shoes. One thing to know is that waterproof hiking pants can be noisy when the material rubs together. They are not the most stylish pants, but it will make you feel comfortable and dry.

You can wear a thing legging underneath for extra warmth or in the case when the rain stops, you can take it off. People will choose not to wear waterproof pants when hiking in the rain, but if it is a really wet day, then you may experience some inner thigh chafing. So there are some tips for hiking in the rain. You can watch the best hiking movies for a recommendation.