Pretty much any physical activity can be enhanced with a good batch of bud. Not only in terms of enjoyment, but by enhancing the physiological and psychological benefits of getting active. Science has confirmed weed’s capacity to maximise the benefits of exercise, creating the perfect excuse to combine the two.
Hiking is no exception to the rule, being one of the most rejuvenating and generally fulfilling forms of exercise. Particularly if you stray off the grid for a least a few hours, where wasting time on Snapchat and Instagram simply isn’t an option. It’s just you, those you’ve brought along for the ride and your glorious surroundings.
…and a hefty bag of dank to spice things up a bit.
Why Hike While High?
When you think about it, hiking while high is a no-brainer. Getting out into the open countryside represents the ultimate all-round sensory experience.The unique sights, sounds, smells and sensations of being one with nature. Whether you’re out for a few hours or planning a few days in the wilderness, it’s inspirational and emotive in the extreme.
Given that cannabis can fire-up all five of the senses, why wouldn’t you take some along for the ride?
Just a few hits of a thought-provoking cannabis strain in the right setting can be borderline life-changing. Likewise, unwinding after a 20-mile hike with a batch of your favourite bud around a roaring fire is something else. Cliché, perhaps, but amazing nonetheless.
Still, it’s not necessarily advisable to simply grab a random bag of bud and hope for the best. If you want to get the most out of your high hike, a little forethought goes a long way.
At the risk of sounding preachy, the answer is yes – hiking high responsibly is important. Right off the bat, it’s worth considering how you plan on getting out and about in the first place. If you’re sticking with public transport or walking the whole way, no problem. If somebody needs to drive, somebody’s going to have to stay clean. If nobody’s willing to be the designated driver, you might want to consider alternative options.
Packing for all weather conditions is always a good idea when hiking, but doubly so when hiking high. The reason being that there’s a pretty good chance you’ll lose track of time and could find yourself caught short. Chances are you’ll not be hit by a blizzard in the middle of summer, but be sure to take common sense precautions in accordance with the season.
Dehydration is always a risk when hiking, but can be intensified/accelerated significantly when smoking cannabis. Ensure you pack more than enough water and sports drinks etc. for the ride, along with additional supplies should you need them.
If you’re planning on consuming cannabis through inhalation, it’s also worth carefully considering altitudes. Hikes that involve scaling mountains could mean exposing yourself to thinner air with lower oxygen levels, which can trigger a variety of side effects at the best of times. Inhaling anything that isn’t fresh air can intensify the effects of oxygen deprivation, so it’s worth considering edibles if you’re heading for high ground.
Planning your exact route ahead of time could also be useful, rather than making things up as you go along. Depending on how baked you intend to get, you could be more likely to get lost if you don’t have a specific route to follow.
Last but not least, try to remember that just because you’re having the time of your life on a high hike doesn’t mean everyone else wants to know about it. Try to conduct yourself with dignity and discretion, causing as little disturbances possible and leaving no mess behind. Don’t set the cannabis community back another decade by behaving like an a**hole with other hikers in the vicinity.
Strategic Strain Selection
As mentioned, grabbing a random bag of bud and hitting it hard isn’t the way to go. Deal yourself a dose of couchlock with a 15-mile hike ahead of you and you’ll soon be wishing you stayed home.
Depending on your intentions and your tolerance to THC, you’ll find plenty of cannabis strains that are perfect for hiking. Though it has to be said that the following are perhaps the most highly-recommended of all:
When it comes to delivering the immediate and long-lasting energy needed to do pretty much anything at all, Green Crack takes some beating. A textbook energising strain that hits hard with an immediate blast of mental focus, Green Crack is excellent for outdoor pursuits in general. It’s also comparatively easy to handle – not nearly as sticky and awkward as some strains.
This potent Indica hybrid is more about instilling a sense of confidence and optimism than firing you up with relentless energy. If you’re feeling any anxiety or apprehension about the journey ahead, a few careful hits of Stone Mountain and you’ll be ready to tackle anything. It’s not a strain to hit hard when you’ll be needing your wits about you, but is nonetheless excellent for gentler and less-demanding walks outdoors.
With a fragrance and flavour profile as wonderful as the great outdoors, Agent Orange is also the ultimate anaesthetic. The idea being that at the end of a long hike, you can count on Agent Orange to quickly and indefinitely alleviate any aches and pains you might be experiencing. It’s also fabulous for getting a great night’s sleep while camping, before heading out the next morning.
Last up, Jillybean is just the ticket for delivering a potent yet pleasant dose of energy and motivation ahead of any physical activity. The head-to-toe energizing properties of Jillybean are something else, with little to no discernible psychoactive effects whatsoever. Excellent for maximising energy levels, keeping your senses refreshed without altering your perceptions.