Going out for a hike is fun. But it can also be dangerous. It is not always about wearing safe shoes for hiking and hitting the trail. While that’s a safety measure, it is not always good enough. With that said, you need to make safety your priority. And not just the safety of your feet, but also your safety when you are in the hiking trail.
Don’t hike alone. You are safest with a group. Leave your hiking plans with someone at home and check in frequently. Establish a time you will check in upon completion of your trip, as well as a procedure to follow if you fail to check in.
Be wary of strangers. Be friendly, but cautious. Don’t tell strangers about your plans. Avoid people who act suspiciously, seem hostile, or are intoxicated. Bring a map and compass and know how to use them. Carry a cell phone. Bring extra food and water. Bring extra layers of synthetic clothing. Avoid cotton, which doesn’t dry quickly and can lead to hypothermia when it’s wet.
No one knows how good or ugly a hiking trail will look like. So the idea of hiking alone is not always a good one.
A post published on WBIR states that it is always good to let someone know where you will be during hiking.
Tell someone ahead of time what trail you are hiking on and what time you expect to return. “And that way if for some reason you are delayed, the folks who are waiting at home or know when you’re supposed to come out of the backcountry are able to contact officials to get a search started,” Campbell said.
This is a way of giving them an assurance that they can easily find you when you stay out longer than expected.
Despite the drop in temperatures, first responders say safety is still a big concern for hikers. “They get lost, they don’t have any water, they don’t hydrate well,” said CalFire Cpt. Fernando Herrera.
Herrera gave us a long list of safety tips for people hiking in the desert but says the two most important tips are preplanning your hike and staying hydrated. “You’re going to need one quart of water for every two hours that you’re going to be out hiking,” Herrera said.
You should bring enough water in your backpack. And drink the water whenever you are thirsty. It is important that you stay hydrated.
Safety isn’t always something we put first when we think about going for a hike. But it is the most important thing. So make sure you observe the safety tips above before you for your next adventure.