The Clever Duct Tape Hack Every Hiker Needs To Know About

Quick question for all the hiking enthusiasts and trekkers out there: Have you ever found yourself stuck with a ripped tent or a painful blister — and no way to fix them? Sure, most outdoor fanatics are usually prepared to deal with little incidents like these. However, there's nothing that guarantees that you won't ever run across an instance when you'll need something you don't actually have on you. After all, the outdoors are full of unexpected surprises and challenges.

Luckily, according to Reddit user u/fkinglag, there's a handy trick that can help ensure you're never left to your own devices — and it involves the star of multi-use camping and hiking essentials:duct tape. By taking your roll of duct tape and wrapping a good amount of it around your water bottle, you'll always have access to it — even when you're on-the-go and don't want to lug around an entire kit with you.

Why duct tape?

Incredibly durable and waterproof, having duct tape at hand during a hike — whether it's a multi-day trip or a quick loop along one of your favorite trails — can save you from many possible uncomfortable scenarios. Feel like there's an annoying blister slowing you down? Just tear a piece off from your water bottle and tape it over the blister without popping the skin — otherwise it could lead to infection. Want to prep before a hike to make sure you're not troubled by annoying blisters? Clean and dry your feet before taping up the area to prevent any blisters or sores from forming.

Alternatively, duct tape can also be a great way to fix a broken boot during a hike. Mistakes happen, right? And cracked soles aren't all that rare when you've been using the same pair of boots for years. That said, having some duct tape at hand means you can easily mend your boots — along with other accessories such as gloves and sunglasses — on-the-go so you can continue to enjoy your adventure.

Lastly, this clever duct tape hack can also help when it's your water bottle itself that has suffered an accident. Nothing is worse than a leaky bottle — especially during long hikes in the sun. To avoid you from dripping your water away, clean and dry your bottle before slapping a piece of duct tape over the crack. Voilá — your bottle is back to being watertight.

Other duct tape uses

Duct tape isn't just for hiking emergencies. One of the most important camping essentials to have on hand even if you're not hiking or moving around, duct tape can do pretty much everything you can think of — from first aid to dealing with basic outdoor necessities. Much like hikers can use duct tape to repair broken water bottles, it can also be used to fix holes in a tent, strengthen tent poles, fix up broken or cracked cooking utensils, and even reinforce tent seams during harsh weather conditions.

Additionally, in a pinch, duct tape can even act as a fire starter. Its flammable properties make it useful for kindling when you're struggling to get a campfire going.

In terms of basic first aid, duct tape is handy for removing splinters if you don't have access to tweezers, covering up wounds and scrapes, stabilizing ankles or wrists in case of sprains, and even serving as a makeshift splint — along with sticks — in more serious cases or if there are broken bones.