Everyone for sure has an idea of what to put in a backpack. But it is very important to chose correctly what is really fundamental, what is less important, and what is unnecessary. I remember once time ago a friend of mine that came for a 2-days hike in the Dolomites in Friuli Region with a backpack of around 20 kilograms (!). He really had everithing inside, but after few hours of path he lost all his energies.
How to choose the really useful equipment? A good starting point is to put only what is strictly necessary.
Considering the season, the lenght of your hike, the weather forecast is necessary.
Rain-Jacket: a sunny day can quickly change into a windy or rainy day. Expecially in summer. The rain-jacket must be unpadded, light, absolutely waterproof. A wind-stopper technolgy is a plus. The most the jacket is light, the less space and weight it has. If you use it during a hike, your body will go on sweating even in case of rain, so the jacket must be breathable.
Softshell: this is a all-around dress you can use in different situations. In a Spring or Autumn hike, it allows to you to do the hike staying warm and wind-protected all the time. Usually softshell are also a little water-resistant, so in case of light rain you can be protected without use the rain-jacket. On Summer, it can be used in the hikes at higher altitudes or in case of sudden drops in temperature.
Tshirt or shirt: today the dress industry provides a lot of technic shirts for sport and hike, so you have no problems to choose a breathable shirt. I still prefere cotton shirts instead of synthetic fabrics. If your hike will take 1 entire day or more days, you should take with you 1 shirt for each day.
Pants: short or long?: it depends from the kind of your hike. A Summer hike in a sunny day along meadows allows you to use short pants, but in the most of other situations I prefere long pants. Long pants protect your leg from wood, rock, rain, and also from some unusual but possible meeting with vipers, a common snake on Dolomites. If you are afraid of hot weather, you can put a simple cotton short pant in your backpack to quickly change your dress if needed.
Water: it is fundamental. Finding water sources is not easy if you do not know the enviroment around you, so a water bottle is needed. You can consider 1 liter per person per day, and as my granpa said: “Se bevi troppo ti tagli le gambe!” (If you drink to much water you obtain tired legs). Avoid coke or sodas, they make you thirsty. Wine, bier or grappa are allowed during a pause in a hut 🙂
Food: this is very personal… I usually do not eat so much during a hike, so for 1-day I can only take with me 1 sandwich with ham and cheese, 1 fresh fruit (apple or banana), 1 chocolate bar and some dried fruit. But it is up to you.
Emergency kit: it is a good idea to bring with you some blister plasters, a disinfectant, a multipurpose boxcutter and a torch, they could be useful in many needs.
Never forget to take with you the paper map of the area you are hiking.
A good backpack for 1-day hike in Dolomites should not be more than 4-5 kilograms heavy. Put the lightest and less fundamental things on the bottom of tha backpack, and let’s go!
Remember to calibrate this suggestions considering the hike you are going to do.