Would you like to explore longer trails and see more beautiful scenery? These tips will help you cover more miles, whether you're out for an epic 20 mile day hike or a long backpacking trip.

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If you have many miles to cover, starting early is a practical (less chance of getting caught out after dark) and mental advantage. Any miles you cover before sunrise are basically "free" once the sun comes up. 

Start Early

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Skin-on-skin friction is a super common problem among long-distance hikers, and it often doesn't pop up until you start putting in longer miles. Slather on some Body Glide or other anti-chafe balm anywhere you need it, and reapply often. 

Prevent Chafing

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Time slips by so fast during mid-hike breaks! It's easy to sit down and forget to start again, especially in a group. Set a timer and make sure every member of the group starts their tasks (eating, changing layers, bathroom break) right away.

Take Efficient Breaks

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The longer your hike, the more steps you take, and the more important comfortable shoes become. Many longer-distance hikers trade heavy boots for light breathable trail running shoes that keep their feet dry and don't add extra weight to every step.

Wear Light Breathable Shoes

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If you're attempting a long day hike, research water sources along your route and bring a lightweight filter like a Sawyer Squeeze or BeFree. Refilling partway through saves several pounds of weight on your back.

Bring A Water Filter

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This may sound obvious, but food is your fuel and if you want to hike long miles you need to eat plenty. It's easy to underestimate how hungry you'll feel out on the trail. Count calories if needed to make sure you're carrying enough.

Pack LOTS of Food

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To see more tips for long days on the trail, swipe up to read the full post at Exploring Wild.

This interactive trip planning guide is packed with checklists, key questions, and recommendations to take the worry out of planning your first or biggest backpacking trip.