Trekking preparation tips

people doing trekking

This post is also available in: Español

If you are planning a new adventure that will take you to explore hiking trails in amazing places in South America, you should follow a number of trekking tips to make your experience not only enjoyable but also safe enough to enjoy.

There are routes that are easy to access and others that are a little more complicated. However, in both cases, you must be careful not to overlook any detail.

For this reason, we give you a series of recommendations for trekking so that you can put them into practice yourself on some of the best trekking routes in South America.

Trekking tips with short routes

The first thing you need to know is your own physical condition, as there are hiking routes that are only recommended for people with a certain amount of experience and fitness.

It is advisable to start with short routes if you have never trekked before and have very little experience. If you are planning a trip to Argentina, you can do the Perito Moreno mini trekking, which is a perfect place to start.

Once you’ve gained some experience, you can try a trek to Torres del Paine. Or even climb Chimborazo.

Never embark on excessively long or demanding trekking route without previous experience!

people trekking on a glacier

Study the route and site conditions

It is important to find out about the route you are going to take. Find out what the conditions are; what climate you will be exposed to; what the difficulty level of the trek is; and how long it will take.

Maps are very useful. So even if you have a guide assigned to you, as in the excursion to Ciudad Perdida, always have a map of the site at hand, as it will show you if there are slopes on the way, rivers, mountainous areas…

hiker using a map of the place

Select the right clothing

Make sure you choose sturdy shoes that fit several types of landscapes. They are useful to cross mountains and at the same time be comfortable. Your safety depends on this since if you go hiking in wrong shoes you can be at risk of injury. Try to choose waterproof shoes.

For clothes, it is advisable to use fibres that dry quickly. That is why technical clothing is ideal, avoid cotton because they are heavy and very difficult to dry. You can also take with you 2 or 3 pairs of socks.

Keep in mind that even if you visit a hot place, the outdoor nighttime temperature can be very low. So try to wear clothes for the day different from those to wear for the night, in case you have to leave.

Close-up of a trekking boot in the wilderness

Organize your backpack

It is important to know how to pack your backpack for trekking. Do not fill your backpack with unnecessary things, think of it as having a survival kit.

You can take:

  • Enough water for the walk. Although plan if there are areas where you can refuel water apt for human consumption (sources, rivers, etc).
  • Food that gives you enough energy and that is not perishable.
  • Whistle, flashlight, a cell phone with an extra battery, camera.
  • Thermal blanket, towel, sleeping bag, hat.
  • You can includeenergy-dense food like bars or some sweets.
  • Multi-purpose knife, compass.
  • You can also build several mini kits that do not generate as much weight as: personal care products, first aid, do not forget to include sunscreen.

Throughout the walk do not forget to drink water regularly and stop to rest if your body asks for it.

Not all the river waters are healthy so it includes water purification tablets to avoid diseases due to the consumption of contaminated water.

It is always a good idea to acquire a trekking pole. This useful tool will help you maintain balance and also reduce tension in knees and ankles.

tourists trekking with backpacks

Advice with the environment

Apart from the advice we have given to you, also keep these tips in mind when relating to the natural environment:

Be very respectful of the nature that surrounds you; in your walk try not to help yourself with branches or plants that you can damage. And take bags to throw the garbage and, above all, enjoy it to the utmost so that you have memorable memories that last forever.

So now you know! Now that we’ve given you some tips on how to go trekking, you just have to put them into practice, do you already know which route you’re going to start with?


Lily is happy with a backpack on her back. Every year she travels through one country in Latin America and has repeated several times, especially Peru where she says she feels at home (although she says the same about Argentina, Chile and Bolivia).

She loves ceviche, hiking and Sunday picnics with her friends, although whenever you ask her, she's always planning her next destination.

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