• Getting dehydrated takes the fun out of a long leisurely summer hike. So drink plenty of water before you even put one foot in front of the other, suggests Ali Chernoff, a registered dietitian in Vanouver. Munch on foods with a high water content, such as oranges, apples, watermelon and cucumbers. And drink at least two cups of water before you head out. Bring along one litre of water for a one- to two-hour hike and sip it while you walk. In case you get hungry during the hike, pack snacks that are high in carbohydrates such as high-fibre crackers, strawberries and blueberries, which metabolize quickly to give you energy.

• Pick the right socks to prevent sweating and blisters when you walk. All-cotton athletic socks get saturated with your sweat, explains podiatrist Brent Young. So wear socks made with a blend of cotton and synthetic fabrics, such as polypropylene or CoolMax, to keep feet dry. For more tips on what to wear on the walking trail, click here.