Recording your hiking adventures is a fun way to document everything that happens. You can often get some amazing views and see some amazing parts of the world by simply hiking to them.
One way to document your adventures is with a GoPro or GoPro style camera. Because GoPros are so small and lightweight, they are great for taking hiking. Ultimately they give you the ability to record HD video with a small form factor.
Are GoPros Good for Hiking?
Yes, taking a GoPro hiking is a great idea. They’re small and lightweight which makes them great to travel with. They are also waterproof and shockproof. If you drop it on some rocks, which let’s be honest you probably will at some point, it will survive the beating.
Keep in mind a GoPro is made to record action videos in high framerates. This may be overkill for more hikers who are just out and about and want to record the scenery. Something like a high-quality point and shoot, or a mirrorless DSLR may be a better choice if recording video isn’t a priority.
If you want to document your hike through video though, a GoPro is a great choice.
How Do You Carry a GoPro While Hiking?
There are a few different ways to bring a GoPro with you when you go hiking.
Collapsable Monopod/selfie Stick
With this style, you’ll be able to hold the GoPro away from you either in front or behind. Using something that is collapsable will save you the packing space as well as be lighter to carry, something that is important while hiking.
Backpack Should Strap Mount
This style of mount attaches to your backpack’s shoulder straps. You can mount it to either your left or your right side. It is meant to give a view from your chest height. This method of carrying is efficient because it is hands-free.
Having the GoPro hands free means you have both hands for hiking/trekking poles or have your arms available to catch yourself if you fall or lose your balance.
Hand/wrist Strap Mount
Having the GoPro mount to the top of your hand or wrist can give you some very interesting angles to record from. This gets the viewer into the action.
While this is a hands-free method of mounting the camera, the fact that it’s on your hand could make things a little annoying if you’re trying to film but need to climb something with both hands.
Head Strap Mount
This method of mounting is also hands-free and will give you a great angle to record from. It will be recording essentially what you see, which will probably be most appealing to your viewer. Be careful not to look around too fast or you may make your viewers dizzy!
Best GoPro to Bring Hiking
The best GoPro to take hiking with you would have to be the GoPro Hero10 Black. With its legendary GP2 processor, that’s able to record at 5.3K at 60fps. Advanced video stabilization will give your hiking videos a silky smooth appearance without jittery shakes that can take away from the viewing experience.
GoPro Accessories to Bring Hiking
Along with the straps or mounts, you may want to bring the following on your trip.
Spare GoPro Batteries
This is a huge one! You want to bring spare batteries with you. These little devices don’t last forever, and recording video can be a battery-intensive task. Avoid the disappointment of missing the action because your GoPro is dead, bring extra batteries.
Using a wide-angle lens will give you the greatest field of view in your recordings. You’ll want to do this because capturing the entire landscape is important when recording hiking videos.
What to Bring Hiking Instead of A GoPro
You may not want to bring a GoPro with you hiking. At the end of the day, it’s an action camera that people wear when they’re skiing, snowboarding, or downhill mountain biking. Hiking can be a pretty leisurely activity so you may not require a GoPro.
Taking something like a small mirrorless DSLR could be a great choice. The reason why is not many people may want to record videos of them hiking. Many people will just want to photograph the scenery, rivers, canyons, etc whatever the terrain is.
A DSLR will be far superior at taking photos to a GoPro. It’s still possible to get still photos from a GoPro but it is more of a hassle than it’s worth in my opinion. You may need extra editing software to get the photos which just adds complexity.
Another reason why a mirrorless DSLR, something like a Sony A6500 is a good choice to bring hiking is because of its small lightweight form factor. You can bring a small fanny pack or a small camera bag with the camera, a couple of lenses and some filters. Going this route will elevate your photography, and the final photos will be much nicer.
If you want to record your hiking adventures, then yes a GoPro will do a great job. It may not be the best tool for the job, but you shouldn’t be worrying about that. Just get outside and enjoy the outdoors. The most important thing is putting yourself in nature to enjoy the beauty.
Use what you have when you go hiking. Only have a cell phone? That will work great. If you have a DSLR but are unsure if bringing would be worth it? I can assure you it’s worth it. Don’t sweat the small stuff like which camera to bring. Just get outdoors and the rest will work out just fine.