Rule #1: Pack lightBackpacking can be hard work! Especially if you overpack trying to anticipate every potential scenario. Everything you pack will be carried by you for the rest of the trip. Do you need a second pair of shoes? A third sweater? Please prepare clothes according to weather forecast, day and night temperature difference, altitude, etc. before departure.
Rule #2: Think about waterBackpacking may be exhausting, so planning how you will gather and store your water is critical. Every 2 hours, many hikers carry 1 liter of water. This formula may need to be modified depending on the circumstances. Water intake may be affected by temperature, humidity, altitude, route, and body weight. Bring some water, but keep in mind that water is heavy, so the more you bring, the heavier your bag will be.
Rule #3: Light clothing
Pack light - wear light. Your clothing should be light and breathable. Waterproofs aren't heavy, so don't neglect to bring some! Clothing like jeans is going to be uncomfortable to wear and heavy as heck to carry. Try to wear lightweight hiking pants, like stretch cargo trousers.
Rule #4: Walk at the pace of the slowest person
If you are backpacking in a group ensure you are walking at a pace comfortable to the slowest person. This even applies to groups of one! Don't push yourself to walk faster than is comfortable for you, hiking is most certainly a marathon, not a sprint.
Rule #5: Cookware can be a lifesaver
Bringing some high-quality hiking cookware or backpacking stoves with you can be a lifesaver - really! Whether you are using it to cook your dinner or purify your water, cookware can be the difference between going to bed hungry or not. Cookware or backpacking stoves don't have to be heavy, there are plenty of options for lightweight compact cookware, you don't have to pack a cast iron pan for the trail.
Rule #6: Stick to the trail
Backpacking can be dangerous. If you don't take care to stick to the trail you WILL get lost and it's a hell of a hard job to find someone when you don't know where to start looking. Always inform someone of where and when you will be hiking. Tell them which trail you'll be on and then stick to it. It's okay to deviate from the path a little, like when you're taking a break or camping, just don't wander too far
Rule #7: Leave the trail as you found it
Don't litter, don't disturb the wildlife more than you need to, and don't leave fires unattended. These three key points are what this rule boils down to. When we enter the great outdoors the responsibility is on us as individuals to maintain the tranquillity and balance that we are entering. If you make a concerted effort to clean up after yourself, do as little damage to the plant life as possible, and leave the animals well enough alone you'll do alright. Anything that comes onto the trail with you should leave with you. It's easy to remember to bring your backpacking stove with you. Its a little harder to ensure every candy bar wrapper is accounted for when you return home.