We’ve had quite a few people asking about kit so this has been put together based on the 2015 trip so you can get thinking…no doubt you’ve got a birthday and a Christmas before the trip 🙂
Generally Switzerland is quite warm in summer (a bit warmer than the weather we are enjoying in the UK at the
moment) but it can rain and can get cold at night. On the day of writing this it was 26 degrees Celsius in
Kandersteg, dropping to 12 overnight. However on the hike day you’ll be going quite high up so it may get quite a
- We will be doing tent shares with tents provided by participants/their Groups similar to those we have done on the training event which will be arranged nearer the time.
- Travel in full uniform including camp scarf
- Any event clothing you ordered
- ONE hold luggage bag, this can be a rucksack or holdall but be aware you may have to carry it from the coach to the site and back (a few hundred metres at most). Trolley cases are not ideal as the ground is too uneven to wheel them. We suggest 75-90 litres depending on how big your clothes are!
- ONE hand luggage bag, I would suggest a rucksack as you can use it for hiking (30-30 litre approx).
- Don’t hang things on the outside – they could fall off and get lost while being transported.
- It’s a good idea to put things in waterproof bags inside your main bag.
- If you’re bringing a camp chair please bring a small one and be aware that if there is limited space on the coach we may need to leave it with whoever drops you off.
- Hiking boots – there will be plenty of hiking – don’t turn up without a pair or you won’t be going!
- Trainers/approach shoes
- Flip flops, crocs or similar so your feet can breathe after a hike and for showers etc
- T-shirts/shirts, underwear, socks, shorts, long trousers etc taking into account the weather. Either pack a full set for 10 days or consider washing (there are facilities for a small fee) and bringing fewer. Lightweight clothing is likely to be best. Don’t just bring jeans, as KISC require you not to wear jeans for their guided hikes.
- Something warm to wear in the evening when it cools down.
- Full waterproofs – jacket and trousers. Note that this needs to be a proper waterproof breathable type jacket with taped seams (unless you’re going Paramo! 🙂 ) and not just a cheap pac-a-mac – if you don’t own one look to borrow one.
- Warm hat and gloves (yes, really, the weather can turn in the mountains!)
When thinking about clothing, consider that when we’re hiking and otherwise out in bad weather you will want to use a layer system so make sure you have clothing that will work with that.
- Wash kit
- Water bottle(s) (min 1.5 litres total, I usually carry more for a big hike myself!)
- Plastic lunch box (you will need this for your packed lunch daily unless you like squashed sandwiches!)
- Food for the journey (more to follow).
- Sleeping bag (I would recommend packing this in a compression sack to keep it small, if yours hasn’t got
one they can be bought very cheaply from eBay/Amazon/local camping shops etc)
- Sleeping mat – the blow-up kind that fold down small are best. You needn’t buy a Thermarest – cheaper ones are available (I personally just bought an Alpkit one which looks quite good). You can bring a traditional polystyrene mat if you prefer or if that’s what you have – the best way to pack this in your bag is to roll it loosely before you put anything else in, and put everything else inside it.
- Pillow if you want one (though I find that stuffing clothes into your stuff sack and putting a towel or jumper
around it is a good substitute, and you then save space in your bag!)
- PASSPORT – requires 6 months validity left the day after we return from the trip, but also see below
- EHIC (assuming these are still available)
- Torch (lightweight LED one best)
- Sunglasses, sun cream at least factor 15, hat, lip salve (the latter is recommended for if we end up hiking
on any snow though I’m not sure if we will)
- Personal first aid kit including blister plasters (put it in your hold bag or the scissors will cause issues!)
- Spending money/cards etc (more to follow on this)
- Insect repellent (though I haven’t noticed it being a massive problem in Switzerland before)
- Any medication you may need
- Penknife if you wish if parents are happy with this (folding non-locking small type) – though some of you
may want to buy one.
A note regarding passports
If there is a “no deal” Brexit the requirements may be slightly different. In particular your passport must have been issued no more than 9 years and 6 months ago on the date of our return to the UK. Please check the start date as well as the end date and renew if necessary.
More information: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/travelling-to-the-eu-with-a-uk-passport-if-theres-no-brexit-deal/travelling-to-the-eu-with-a-uk-passport-if-theres-no-brexit-deal