Hiking Safety: Be prepared for ticks and other hazards along the trail
Fall is one of the best times of the year to enjoy the great outdoors and go for a hike. The cooler weather and changing foliage create a great opportunity for exercise and activities that are as enjoyable and relaxing as they are physically healthy. But before you put on your hiking boots, it’s important to make sure you’re prepared and familiar with some of the hazards you can face while out on the trails.
Here are five safety tips that should be a priority when you go hiking.
1. Bring lots of water
On a cool fall day, dehydration may not be a cause for concern, but vigorous hiking activity can lead to sweating and dehydration regardless of the temperature. Before going on a hike, make sure you have plenty of fresh drinking water in your bag; to stay hydrated you need about a quart of water for every two hours that you plan to hike.
2. Dress for success
Exposure to the elements is a real risk to anyone outdoors. You’ll want to dress with plenty of layers that can be added or taken off to regulate your internal temperature: you can get hot on a hike, for example, but quickly get cool if you stop for a break. Try to avoid cotton clothing and wear wool or man-made fibers instead. And don’t forget, it’s always important to protect your skin from the sun’s harmful rays by applying sunscreen to all exposed parts of your body!
3. Keep an eye out for creatures
Ticks are a constant danger to watch out for outdoors, especially if you are hiking in tall grass or other areas with dense foliage. Long pants and long sleeves can reduce your potential exposure, and it’s important to do a tick check on you (and your pets!) After a hike to make sure there aren’t any ticks on. your skin. Also, be sure to watch out for other potential hazards in wooded areas, such as insects, snakes, and other wildlife.
4. Look but don’t touch
The beautiful plant life is one of the best parts of a woodland hike, but there are a number of poisonous plants you need to watch out for. Poison ivy, poison ivy, and poison ivy can all grow in the undergrowth of wooded areas. Covering the exposed skin will help reduce the chance of exposure, but you should also be able to identify these plants and be careful to avoid them.
5. Don’t go it alone
The buddy system is recommended whenever you go out into the woods so that there is someone to help you out if you have a problem. In addition, it is important to let others know where you are going and when you are expected; if you do get lost, it is important that someone knows it to alert the emergency services!
In addition to the tips above, be sure to take basic safety precautions. Always stay on the trail. Wear stable shoes and bring a first aid kit on your trip. Make sure you have a map of where you are hiking and any other basic supplies (like energy bars and a flashlight) in case you find yourself outside for longer than expected.
With just a little preparation, you can answer the call of the great outdoors and reap the physical and mental benefits of a healthy hike.