Activities Outdoors

What to bring on a hike in Santa Monica

SANTA MONICA — Hiking can be a great experience and way to get out, but the activity can be very dangerous. Before you head out hiking in Santa Monica, make sure you are packed for the day with our quick checklist of some important reminders:


The most important part of any hike and one that people often over look is water. You can never have enough water, and if you are thinking about leaving a bottle at home instead of taking it, don’t. When hiking its a good idea to invest in a Hydration Pack. There are a variety of companies that make the backpacks from CamelBak to Katla Volcano. The packs tend to keep hikers more hydrated with the constant reminder that its with you and the easy access to use it. 

After that, two or three water bottles hanging on your belt loop or the pack are there as a precaution. Your pack will run out and it’s nice to have the backup should that happen. A cooler of water in your car to refill your bottles when you get back will help prevent motion sickness as you get down the mountain.

Once you have your water ready, its time to move on to clothing.


Know thy enemy — or in a hiker’s case, the sun. In California, the sun brings on the heat and hiking at its peak hours can be terrible. Don’t make the heat worse by wearing the wrong clothing. If you start in the morning, it may be cold. If you feel the need to put pants on, make them a top layer. There are zip off pants that turn into shorts, sweats over shorts or lightweight hiking pants. As far as a shirt goes, you can pick from a variety of styles. From tank tops to a long sleeve performance shirt, a variety of cool options are available to hikers.

However, remember when hiking at night – bright is best.



It may seem like a small detail, but letting people know where you are is probably one of the most important pieces of hiking. Whether you go with someone or not, you most likely won’t have a signal on the hike, meaning if something happens it’ll be a while before anyone knows something has happened. It’s good to let someone away from the hiking area know where you are going and when you’ll be gone. Don’t be late when you are coming back though. It’s important to be on time when you return so that should something ever go wrong people will know.

Santa Monica offers a wide variety of hiking options from beginner peaks to intense paths. Being prepared will make even the worst of heat and terrains more enjoyable. So pack your bag full of food and water to enjoy your day out exploring some of Santa Monica’s more rural landscapes.

Feature photo courtesy of Malofx’s Instagram. In post photos courtesy of Chasing Trail, The Average Hiking Girl and 3 Little Nomad’s Instagrams.


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