Hiking Goals

It’s a new year! Time to change the calendars and reflect on the past twelve months of your life. Whether this past year was one for the books or it’s one you hope to forget as quickly as possible, you can almost certainly improve in some areas over the next twelve months. Take your hiking to the next level this year, and set some hiking goals for yourself!

Build a tick list

Whether you call it a hiking bucket list, or hiking tick list, it is a list of specific trails that you want to complete. This can include some easily attainable trails from your own backyard, shiny marquee hikes like Angel’s Landing in Zion National Park or The Wonderland Trail surrounding Mt. Rainer, or a 3-month commitment like the Appalachian Trail.

Days on the trail

Set a hiking goal for the number of days you want to spend on hiking trails this year. Maybe you want to spend a week hiking, or two weeks hiking, or a month hiking. You don’t have to save up your vacation days or quit your job to do it.

A weekend here and a 3-4 day backpacking trip on a long weekend there can get you to your goal in no time. If you spend one weekend backpacking each month, you’ll hit 24 days on the trail this year.

How many miles?

Maybe you’re a numbers guy or gal, and you want to rack up as many miles as possible. Basing your hiking goals on mileage requires you to have a good sense of your hiking speed, however. Aim high, or sandbag it.


Establish a new PFKT (personal fastest known time) for your favorite trail.


Hiking goals don’t have to be specific to hiking trails.

  • Establish an exercise routine
  • Start running
  • Start walking every day
  • Get your pace down on your mile
  • Start doing squats

There are all kinds of fitness goals that can help with hiking.


Which is more useful on the trail, skills or gear? People argue both ways, but there’s no denying the value of outdoor skills when you’re out on the trail.

  • Improve your fire building
  • Learn how to make a lean-to
  • Learn to identify flora and fauna
  • Master your knots
  • Learn how to read a topo map

The more outdoor skills you master, the less gear you have to bring on the trail. Until then, make sure you have the right gear in your pack. Visit us at Uncle Sam’s Safari Outfitters for outdoor gear, backpacking equipment, and camping supplies in Northwest Arkansas!

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