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The Best Hiking Tips for a Safe and Fun Trip

Updated: Sep 21, 2022

Hiking can be a fun and rewarding experience, but it can also be dangerous if you're not prepared. In this blog post, we will discuss some of the best hiking tips to help you have a safe and enjoyable trip. Whether you're a beginner or an experienced hiker, these tips will come in handy!

Whether you're planning a trip across the Appalachian Trail, looking forward to day hikes on a section of the Pacific Crest Trail, or anything in between, following a few simple guidelines will make your excursion more pleasurable.

The essentials for a safe adventure

By having the tools you need to turn an unanticipated aspect of your trip into a thrilling moment, you can avoid unpleasant circumstances.

  • Know how to use a map and compass.

  • Ensure you have a pocket knife on hand, and store fire-starting materials in a waterproof container.

  • Assume the weather will shift — bring sunscreen, rain gear, and extra clothing in case of a sudden chill.

  • Pack extra food and water.

  • Don't forget to bring a whistle and a first-aid kit, as well as a headlamp if your excursion lasts longer than anticipated.

Day Hiking

Enjoy the refreshment of the wilderness (and prepare and train for longer hikes) with planned day trips.

  • Check the forecast before going. Avoid afternoon rains by checking the weather first.

  • The best time to see wildlife is at dawn.

  • If you're looking to escape the hustle and bustle, try adventure trails that are less popular but still beautiful.

  • Wearing the right shoes makes all the difference on any given day, but especially when engaging in outdoor activities. You can find trained staff at your local outdoor retailer who will help you find a pair that fits well; their guidance is invaluable to ensuring you have a pleasant experience instead of one marred by pain and discomfort.

Night Hiking

  • Allow your eyes to adjust naturally in the dark or use a headlamp.

  • Always wear goggles or glasses when hiking to avoid an errant branch injuring your eyes.

  • As the temperature drops, you'll be grateful for additional layers of non-cotton, fast-drying, wicking apparel.

  • As though your footing might collapse at any second, take small steps and place your foot down gently to assess the stability before putting your weight on it. It's slower than you usually hike, but in return, you'll avoid a twisted ankle — and as an added bonus, you'll get to fully experience all the sounds of nature around you.

Hiking with Kids

Hiking with your children is a wonderful method to get them interested in the outdoors. Just keep the objectives simple.

  • Before you attempt strenuous mountain hikes, begin with missions that end with a tangible goal in sight, like a waterfall or lake.

  • Prepare to spend more time than you think necessary. If you don't achieve your goal because the kids want to check out under every leaf, that's also an excellent walk. It's not about getting there with children; it's about the experience.

Hiking with Dogs

  • Be sure to keep your dog's vaccinations up to date and their ID tags secure.

  • Note that dogs must be trained and conditioned for longer treks, so don't forget to bring them along on your short excursions.

  • If you have the right equipment and time to get your dog used to it, they can carry their own supplies.

  • Do a thorough health check at the end of each day, and include canine-friendly supplies in your first aid kit.

  • Before you go, double-check the regulations; you don't want your dog to scare wildlife. National Park trails are off-limits for dogs, whereas other public lands just require that dogs be on a leash.

Leave No Trace

  • Collect all your trash. In fact, collect everyone’s trash. Make it your goal to leave a trail more pristine than you found it.

  • Bring gallon zip-top plastic bags for day hikes and more refuse supplies if you're going on a longer journey.

  • Stay on the designated paths. Take only photographs and leave no traces of your visit to our natural environment.

Check out another great hiking website: Bearinforest

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