Hiking backpacks now part of P.E.I. Public Library collection
Backpacks include maps, binoculars and field guides
Hiking backpacks are the newest item available at the P.E.I. Public Library.
The backpacks, created through a partnership with Recreation P.E.I., are filled with resources and equipment to keep you safe and informed on the trail, including maps and guides, a whistle, a safety vest, and even a hammock.
"This would be aimed really at anyone who is interested in hiking but perhaps has not had the chance or the materials," said Gillian Mahen, a library technician with the P.E.I. Public Library.
"You might not have your own pair of binoculars, but this way you can try it out."
The backpacks also include a pamphlet on local birds, a book on animal tracks, a book on local wildflowers, a map of the Confederation Trail, and maps of several other popular hiking trails on P.E.I.
"We're all about access to all sorts of things at the library," said Mahen.
"We're always adding to our collection and always diversifying and we're trying to reach as many people on the Island as possible."
The hiking backpacks, which can be borrowed for three weeks, build on other library items that promote physical activity, such as snowshoes, walking poles, and yoga kits.
Mahen said the backpacks promote physical literacy.
"Hiking is good for both the body and soul," she said.
"I love being out in nature myself personally. I find it very calming and relaxing."
Library expects backpacks will be popular
There are 18 backpacks in the library's collection, and you can place a hold on them online to pick up at your preferred branch.
"They've been very popular," said Mahen.
"Last year we launched a nature backpack for children that had flower presses and kid binoculars and things like that. And they went out like hotcakes. So I assume this will be the same."