Hiking and Backpacking
Hiking is a long, vigorous walk, usually on trails (footpaths), in the countryside, while the word walking is used for shorter, particularly urban walks. Hiking and walking are the preferred terms, in Canada and the United States. In the United Kingdom, the word “walking” is used to describe all forms of walking, whether it is a walk in the park or backpacking in the Alps. Rambling is an old-fashioned term, and hillwalking, and fell walking are more obscure. The term bushwalking is endemic to Australia. In New Zealand, a long, vigorous walk or hike is called tramping. Hiking is a popular activity with numerous hiking organizations worldwide, and studies suggest that all forms of walking have health benefits. And long soul-searching journeys on foot are often called a pilgrimage. And if you bring a backpack, you’re called a backpacker.