There is no experience quite like immersing yourself in the great outdoors by going hiking, and if you can get yourself some hiking companions, you are in for a treat. Bringing you everything from fresh air to stunning views, hiking can be incredibly invigorating and really help you to unwind and escape from your busy life. Despite these benefits, hiking does carry some real risks. It doesn’t matter how experienced you are or where you are going to hike, unexpected circumstances can happen when you are out in nature.
There are many things that you can do to minimize the risks of an emergency and this starts with careful preparation. To help out everyone who is planning a hike with their friends or family here is how to stay safe when you go hiking with a group of people.
1. Minimize Unnecessary Risks
Being in the wild is the last place to take unnecessary risks so hikers should avoid dangerous areas that can result in a fall or injury and necessitate a rescue. Hikers should always stick to official trails where possible, and try to stay local, and take shorter hikes instead of long-distance ones. The legal experts at https://www.brookslawgroup.com/ explain that if you do stick to the trail but you get injured because of an inherent safety issue with the trail, you should speak to an experienced accident attorney to see what options are available to you. There are various injuries that can be sustained whilst hiking, and if they occur due to a poorly designed hiking trail, you may be entitled to compensation.
2. Prepare for the Weather
Being prepared for the weather goes beyond just checking the weather forecast before your hike because even with the best weather forecast, there are still chances of big storms forming unexpectedly. Get in touch with the local park rangers to find out more about the inclement weather at that specific time of the year and the ways to stay safe in such conditions. Be on the lookout for thunder and lightning, and if you get caught in such circumstances, make your way towards shelter and avoid high/open areas (boulders or fields) along with tall objects (trees, bodies of water, and metal). Changes in weather can also affect the hiking terrain, making the whole hike much riskier, so make sure that you have every bit of safety information you need before committing to your hike.
3. Protect Yourself from the Sun
It is common to see people with terrible sunburn or sunstroke after a hike and these can be very dangerous. It is essential for yourself and everybody in your group to stay protected from the sun when out in the wild. Choose your hiking time wisely in order to avoid the peak hours of sun and heat (ideally in the early morning or late afternoon), and keep a close eye on the weather forecast. Bring along with you a broad-spectrum sunscreen that has an SPF of at least 30 and follow the instructions on the bottle.
Wear clothing made from sun-protective fabric, as well as sunglasses and a hat to shade your face and neck, and make sure to take breaks and drink plenty of water as you hike. If you notice any signs that you are getting too hot or dehydrated such as a headache, dizziness, nausea, or confusion, get to a cool and shady area as quickly as possible and call for help.
4. Stay Hydrated
The recommended amount of water that you should consume while being active outdoors is one-half liter to one liter per hour,– but in order to figure out the exact amount that you will need for your hike, you have to take into consideration your usual intake of water along with the conditions of your hike. Water can be very heavy, so look for natural water sources or places to refill your bottle. Make sure the water is clean as unpurified water can contain harmful pathogens. Water purification tablets can help ensure that everything you drink is safe.
Nature can be unpredictable; and in order to have a memorable adventure in the wilderness, it is your responsibility to be safe and smart on the trails. By being well-equipped, informed, physically capable, and situationally aware, you should have no trouble in dealing with any risks no matter where you are. With the right gear in hand and the proper knowledge on how to keep yourself safe, you can get out there with confidence and enjoy your hike to the fullest.