The Ultimate Guide to Packing for the Backcountry in Florida’s National Parks

Hello, outdoor enthusiasts! Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or gearing up for your first backcountry adventure, packing the right gear is crucial for a safe and enjoyable experience. Here’s a friendly guide to what you should pack when venturing into the wild expanses of Florida’s national parks.

When you’re preparing for a day or several in the backcountry, each item in your pack should serve a purpose. Here are some essentials that we at Florida National Parks Association recommend:

1. **Insect Repellent** – Our parks are beautiful, but the bugs can be fierce! A good repellent will keep you comfortable and bite-free.

2. **Multi-Use Tool** – From cutting a trail snack to making gear repairs, a multi-use tool is indispensable.

3. **Duct Tape** – It’s the do-it-all wonder. Patch up a torn tent, fix a broken pole, or even hold your shoes together until you’re back from the trail.

4. **Bug Shirt** – Don’t let insects ruin your trip. Grab a bug shirt from our partners at @originalbugshirt, and don’t forget to use our promo code FLnationalparks for a 10% discount at checkout.

5. **Zipties and Rope** – Ideal for quick fixes and securing gear or food away from wildlife.

Packing for the backcountry also means being prepared for emergencies. Always bring a first aid kit, plenty of water, a map and compass (or a GPS), and extra food. Adjust your pack contents based on the length of your trip, the weather, and your personal needs.

We support all of Florida’s national parks — from the everglades of the south to the sandy shores of the Gulf Islands. Each park offers unique adventures and challenges, making it important to tailor your gear to the specific environment.

So, lace up your boots, pack wisely, and immerse yourself in the natural beauty of places like Everglades National Park, Biscayne National Park, Dry Tortugas National Park, and the Gulf Islands National Seashore. Happy trails and remember, the best adventure is a safe adventure!