In preparation for your upcoming winter hikes, outdoor enthusiasts can explore what nature has to offer with expert insights and gear from specialty sporting goods retailer Sport Chalet (www.sportchalet.com). The Sport Chalet is a premier, full service specialty sporting goods retailer featuring the industry’s top sports brands in apparel, footwear, and sports equipment. Founded in 1959 by Norbert Olberz, the company has 52 stores in Arizona, California, Nevada and Utah; an online store at www.sportchalet.com; a Team Sales division; and offers more than 50 specialty services for the sports enthusiast, including online same day delivery, climbing, backcountry skiing, ski mountaineering, avalanche education, and mountain trekking instruction, car rack installation, snowboard and ski rental and repair, Scuba training and certification, Scuba boat charters, team sales, gait analysis, baseball/softball glove steaming and lacing, racquet stringing, and bicycle tune-up and repair at its store locations.
Prior to making the trek and for all the future winter hiking trips to come, Sport Chalet Hiking Expert and Senior Apparel Buyer Paul Smedley provides gear and trail recommendations to help both novice and expert hikers blaze the trails in confidence. First, he suggests being equipped with the following items:
— Footwear can make or break a hiking experience. Low cut shoes like adidas Terrex Fast X Mid GTX Outdoor
adidas Terrex Fast X Mid GTX Outdoor Training Shoes
Training Shoes are a lightweight option for shorter trips. Mid- to high-cut footwear offers additional ankle support for longer trips and for hikes with irregular terrain.
— Proper hydration is critical regardless of distance. Hydration packs allow hikers to carry plenty of water with ease. This The North Face Torrent Hydration Pack holds 8L of water in a backpack reservoir that is lightweight with additional space to carry any other hiking essentials.
— Know the weather forecast and plan for changes by bringing layers of clothing or wearing apparel that can transition easily. The adidas MT Hike Zip Off Pant is made of lightweight moisture management fabric and is built with a zipper in each pant leg to easily convert into shorts as temperatures rise.
— Avoid getting stranded with the Delores inReach SE Satellite Communicator, which can track GPS coordinates, allow for text communication regardless of cellular service and can even trigger an SOS signal.
— Should one get separated from a group The Pocket Survival Pak(TM) contains a collection of survival tools
DeLorme inReach SE Satellite Communicator
hikers can easily carry to keep safe and warm.
“The distance and difficulty of the hike determines what type of gear you might need,” said Smedley. “Sport Chalet Experts are readily available in-store to equip hikers with the proper gear and advice tailored to their needs. Our ultimate goal is to help customers feel prepared and capable to get out and explore the world around them.”
To help familiarize beginners to the trails, Smedley also recommends visiting some of the most well-known hiking destinations in the United States, including:
— Grand Canyon National Park – As one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World, the Grand Canyon is not to be missed. The national park touts many trails around the rim of the canyon all with varying difficulties. For avid hikers, the Bright Angel Trail is a popular route, consisting of a nine-mile hike around the southern rim of the canyon.
— Yosemite National Park – A staple for experienced hikers and backpackers, the hike up Half Dome is 16 miles roundtrip and includes a tethered trek up the steep face of Half Dome. For those looking for a lighter option, Glacier Point is a one-mile hike with panorama views of Half Dome and much of the Yosemite Valley.
The North Face Torrent Hydration Pack
— Arches National Park – Make way on the Delicate Arch Trail, which is a three-mile hike to one of Utah’s most iconic figures- the Delicate Arch. This trail promises a view of the 65-foot freestanding natural arch and is perfect for intermediate hikers.
— Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Park – The Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Park is home to some of the world’s largest trees. The novice hiker can enjoy short hikes like the Big Trees Trail and Tonopah Falls Trail, which are both less than two miles in distance. The Big Trees Trail weaves through forests of towering 250-foot sequoias while the Tokopah Falls Trail journeys to the park’s largest waterfall.
— Zion National Park – The Narrows is the most popular hike at Zion National Park with spectacular views of sandstone grottos, natural springs and hanging gardens. The trail takes hikers along the Virgin River floor, so adventure seekers should come prepared in waterproof gear and apparel.
For more information on Sport Chalet’s selection of hiking gear, and to find the Sport Chalet location nearest you, visit www.sportchalet.com.