Ultimate Guide to Outdoor Hiking and Laundry: Tips and Tricks for Staying Fresh and Clean on the Trail

We have been so busy with work and responsibilities that we forget how to live. Outdoor hiking is the best way to escape the hustle and bustle of city life and connect with nature. But, the primary concern and most extensive challenge of hikers is how to stay clean and fresh during their hike. It is difficult to maintain freshness when you go on a multi-day hike, where you will be away from the modern wash and fold services like Liox Clean.

We have an ultimate guide to outdoor hiking and laundry prepared for you. We have tips and tricks on staying fresh and clean while on the trail.

Pack (lightly) the right clothes

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You do not have to pack several clothes to stay fresh. Packing more than what is enough may affect your hiking experience. It is best to pack lightly and with the right clothes for your multi-day hiking trip.

Choose clothes that are made of breathable and quick-drying materials to keep you cool and dry even when you are sweating. Pack extra clothes (but not too many) so you can change into fresh clothes each day.

Bring quick-drying towels

Quick-drying towels can be used for various purposes, including drying your body after a shower or swim, wiping down gear, or even as a picnic blanket. Bring quick-drying towels to your trip, as they are much lighter and more compact than traditional towels.

Also, as the name suggests, these towels dry much faster. You do not have to wait long to pack your towel away after using it.

Invest in a high-quality portable camping washer

If you are going on a multi-day hike, consider investing in a camping washer. These portable washing machines are designed for use on the trail and can be a lifesaver when it comes to keeping your clothes clean. Simply fill the washer with water, soap, and clothes, then crank the handle to agitate the clothes. The washer uses less water than washing clothes by hand, so you will save on water weight.  However, these are only possible if you have a van camper.

Use a solar-powered portable dryer

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Consider using a solar-powered dryer. These handy devices use the power of the sun to dry your clothes, so you will not have to worry about finding a place to hang them up to dry. However, these are only possible if you have a van camper.

Bringing and using a portable washer and dryer on a hike is possible, but it may not be the most practical option for everyone.  Portable washers and dryers can be heavy and bulky, which can be a challenge to carry in a backpack. Consider the weight and size of the portable washer and dryer when making your decision.

Use biodegradable soaps

When washing your clothes and body, it is important to use biodegradable soap. Regular soap can harm the environment by leaving residue in streams and lakes, so make sure to choose a soap that is safe for nature.

Mindfully wash clothes in streams

If you do not have a camping washer, you can still keep your clothes clean by washing them in streams. Washing clothes in streams can be a convenient and effective way to keep your clothes clean while on a multi-day hike, but it is important to do it in a mindful and environmentally responsible way.

Simply find a quiet section of the stream, and use your hands to agitate the clothes in the water. Use a bar of biodegradable soap. Regular laundry detergents can harm the environment and the aquatic life in streams. Rinse the clothes thoroughly to remove all soap residue, then hang them up to dry.

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Practice good hygiene

Practicing good hygiene while on a multi-day hike is essential to maintain your health and well-being. Even when you are on the trail, it is important to practice good hygiene. Wash your hands regularly, brush your teeth, and use biodegradable wet towels to clean your body.

Keep camping grounds or hike trail clean

It is important to maintain a clean and fresh environment.

Follow the Leave No Trace principles, which include planning ahead, traveling and camping on durable surfaces, disposing of waste properly, and leaving what you find. Also, do not feed wildlife, and keep a safe distance from animals. Do not leave food or trash in your tent or camp, as this can attract wildlife and put both you and the animals at risk.

Pack out all of your trash, and make sure to keep your sleeping area and cooking area free of food crumbs and spills.

Lastly, if you are on a multi-day hike, consider using a portable toilet. This will help prevent human waste from contaminating streams, lakes, and other bodies of water.

Only use scent-free products

Using scent-free products is an important consideration when going on a hike, as it helps minimize your impact on the environment, wildlife, and the wilderness experience. Scented ones may attract animals and may cause trouble during your hike or camp. Make sure to use scent-free sunscreen, soap, and insect repellents on your hike.

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Be mindful of water usage

When washing your clothes and body at the camping grounds, be mindful of your water usage. Use as little water as possible, and make sure to conserve water by collecting and storing rainwater.

By following this ultimate guide, you can enjoy your outdoor hiking without having to worry about feeling smelly and dirty. Moreover, it is important to always be mindful of your practices to respect the environment.

Final Thoughts

Staying clean and fresh on a multi-day hike can be a challenge, but with the right tips and tricks, it can be an enjoyable and manageable experience. Remember to practice good hygiene, bring quick-drying towels, wear breathable clothing, and use scent-free products. When managing your laundry needs, pack minimal clothing, mindfully wash clothes in streams, and hang dry clothes. With these tips, you’ll be ready for a successful and comfortable hiking and camping trip.