Backpacking. There may be no better way to actually get away from it all. But unlike its little brother the day hike, the multi-day hike requires the backpacker to be prepared for exponentially more contingencies.
First, the pack itself must be large enough to carry several days’ worth of food, water and camping stove fuel. Also, sleeping arrangements. Unless you’re planning to find a motel on the trail or going full-on survivalist mode, you’ll need to determine whether you’re rocking a tent and ground cloth with a sleeping bag and pad or a hammock and suspension system.
Then you’ll have to be prepared for harsh weather conditions, which includes sun and rain. Start with rain. Nothing can turn a good hike bad faster than a waterlogged backpack. Be sure to have a pack cover at the ready to protect all that gear you want to keep dry, especially your extra clothes and sleeping bag. After you cover the bag, make sure you have the proper rain gear to cover yourself. As for the sun, make sure you pack lip balm, sunscreen, a hat and sunglasses.
Next, think safety: first aid kits, insect repellent, emergency whistle. Those are the obvious ones. What about a hang bag to keep your food out of reach of bears? That’s definitely a safety item.
If you’ve got the room in your bag, you might want to consider a backpacking stove and fuel canisters. After a long day hiking, this little luxury is a fantastic way to pamper yourself on the trail, especially if rain has made lighting a real fire nearly impossible. You’ll also need a mess kit or cook pot. Finally, don’t forget water. You need it to live so carry as much as you can and carry a filtration method or another treatment method in case yours becomes contaminated or spills.