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Going for a hike in Tampa Bay? Don’t forget these items.

If you’re headed out on an outdoor adventure with your dog, this list of gear has you covered.
 
Hikers, from left, Aaron Freedman, Darry Jackson and Terry Tomalin hike the Florida Trail through Hillsborough River State Park in Thonotosassa in 2007.
Hikers, from left, Aaron Freedman, Darry Jackson and Terry Tomalin hike the Florida Trail through Hillsborough River State Park in Thonotosassa in 2007. [ DOUGLAS CLIFFORD | Times (2007) ]
Published July 12, 2023|Updated Oct. 10, 2023

Across the Tampa Bay area, there are plenty of ways to get out and enjoy the outdoors. I’ve explored many local hiking trails over the years and suggested some personal favorites in this listicle. And on most of them, your favorite fur-friend(s) can tag along for the journey.

But what’s the best gear to bring with you on these excursions?

Here’s a quick, easy five-item packing list, which is dog-friendly, for your next Tampa Bay hiking adventure.

Good walking shoes are one of the many items people should have when hiking in Florida. Tampa Bay Times staffer Mari Faiello likes these Chacos.
Good walking shoes are one of the many items people should have when hiking in Florida. Tampa Bay Times staffer Mari Faiello likes these Chacos. [ Mari Faiello ]

Chaco Z/Cloud 2 Sandals

They’re great for all walking surfaces and waterproof, which comes in handy on a rainy day because no one is happy wearing a pair of wet socks.

A travel bag, like this KAVU Sling, is among our must-have items when hitting up Tampa Bay nature trails.
A travel bag, like this KAVU Sling, is among our must-have items when hitting up Tampa Bay nature trails. [ Mari Faiello ]

KAVU Sling Bag

This bag helps me store smaller items, including snacks, car keys, a water bottle, extra plastic bags (in case it rains) and aspirin.

Nike Visor

It is super lightweight and keeps the sun off of my face when I’m not in shaded areas of a trail.

Related: Off the beaten path: 15 Tampa Bay trails to explore

Arcadia Trail Packable Backpack

When I take my German Shepherd, Thor, along with me, this backpack is perfect. It fits right on his back, holding his water bottle, doggy bags and extra treats perfectly. The backpack is ventilated and reflective, too, making it more difficult for people to mistake him for a bear with his all-black coat.

An insulated water bottle is one of the many items people should have when hiking in Florida. This Yeti Rambler is a nice option.
An insulated water bottle is one of the many items people should have when hiking in Florida. This Yeti Rambler is a nice option. [ Mari Faiello ]

26-ounce Yeti Rambler

I use my sticker-adorned insulated water bottle exclusively on outdoor adventures. It keeps my water cool all day long.