5 simple swaps for an eco-friendly hike!
It’s not easy to always be green on a hike. Trust me, I know because I have centred my entire business around that idea. I’ve spent hours scouring the internet for ideas on how to make my food options greener. It would be a waste to keep all this information to myself, so I’ve compiled below the 5 simplest swaps to take you to the next level of eco-warrior in the wild!
1. Swap your plastic for bio bags
Easy. As. Pie! There are now plant-based storage bags available at all good supermarkets. I use the brand BioBag, but I’m sure wherever you are in the world, you’ll be able to find a comparable solution.
These guys work the exact same as a plastic bag, except they are made entirely from plant material 😍.
That in itself is a bonus, but they are also 100% home compostable and reusable. After each hiking trip, I just give them a quick rinse, dry them indoors (avoid direct sunlight because that will just speed up the composting process) and use them again and again. You’ll know when they’ve reached their time (they get a little thin and patchy), and then you can just pop them into your local compost bin to be returned to dirt… ahhhh science!
2. Cook your own food
I know, it’s really easy to just buy a Backcountry meal, boil some water and gulp it down 🤢 (probably holding your nose). Nah, just kidding, they aren’t that bad. But really, there are so many super simple recipes you can DIY on the track to keep the packing down.*
It might require a little extra planning, but it’s worth it when you compare the environmental impact and, surprisingly, the cost! A lot of hiking recipes call for dry ingredients such as pasta, rice, milk powder etc. These ingredients are all readily available at bulk food stores, so grab your containers and stock up; you’ll be surprised at how easy it is.
*comment below if you’d like me to share a post of some super simple DIY food ideas on the track.
3. Make your own trail mix and snacks
If cooking your own food is one step too far, consider at least making your own trail mix and storing it in a reusable container, rather than buying plastic-wrapped muesli bars. It’s not only going to be better for the environment but also better for you, as you’ll be skipping all those nasty preservatives and extra sugars.
Anyone that has been on my tours can vouch for my ‘life-changing’ trail mix, which is 100% package free because I make it myself using bulk-food store ingredients.
4. Use a water bladder
One of the things that really bothers me when I’m hiking is seeing a plastic bottle discarded in the bush. A small bit of plastic; sure it might have fallen out of your pocket. But a plastic bottle has almost certainly been deliberately discarded simply because it was empty.
One of the best investments you can make for your hiking kit is a water bladder system, such as a Camelbak Reservoir. Setting you back only $30, it’s hardly a major investment. Not only will you stay WAY more hydrated on the track, but you’ll also completely eliminate the need to buy plastic water bottles for each hike. Win-Win-Win! 👏
5. Recycle your waste
If you’re smart about it, you can significantly reduce the amount of actual rubbish you have at the end of a hike. Think about taking along a separate bag (the eco/reusable kind please) for all your compost scraps and sort all your other rubbish as you go, keeping separate recyclables, soft plastics, and then everything else (which won’t be that much in the end).
This might sound complicated, but arriving home after the hike will be a dream. Tip one bag into the recycling bin, one into the trash and take soft plastics to your nearest RedCycle collection. Then pat yourself on the back and hop in that shower!