Let’s face it, there are risks you take every time you decide to hike, from simple inflictions such as bug bites and sunburns to larger risks like dangerous predators and even people. Make sure you are prepared to protect yourself, your loved ones, and your friends while you hike. Have peace of mind when out in nature while being aware of the risks around you.
A very important form of protection is to communicate with others about where and when you will be hiking. This is particularly crucial if you decide to hike alone. Don’t head out for a hike without letting someone close to you know when you’ll be done with the hike. Tell them what the plan or protocol should be if they do not hear back from you by a certain time. Hold up your end of the bargain and communicate with them when you’re done so that they don’t worry.
It’d be nice if our world was full of pleasantries and safety. Unfortunately, that’s just not the case. Wild animals such as bears and cougars could seriously risk your life. Don’t rule out individuals that seek out others who are vulnerable in the wilderness. After you’ve accepted this reality, it’s time to form a plan of action. Decide how you’d like to protect yourself in these cases. If you want something less lethal, consider pepper spray. If you would like something that truly could fend off a threat, consider concealed carry while you hike. Don’t want to lug a firearm around? The next best bet would be an investment in a knife.
Don’t let navigation lead you to your demise. Look at maps of the trails you’d like to hike beforehand. You can’t always trust that trails will be marked appropriately. Additionally, it doesn’t hurt to invest in a watch with GPS just in case you need help. Of course, learning the directions based on the sun’s location can help as well. This form of navigation dates back ages ago and could be a last resort if you get lost.
Have peace of mind next time you hike. Know that you are prepared if there is an unfortunate incident while you are out. It’s not easy to think about the worst-case scenario, but you must keep your safety and the safety of others a priority. Making a plan before you hike will help to keep yourself safe and protected.