Whether you’re about to embark on your first ever hike or are a seasoned expert at hitting the trails, your safety is the most important consideration you should make. As you’re out in the wilderness with little outside contact, you should be prepared for anything and everything that can happen.
Just a little bit of forward planning can be a literal matter of life and death when hiking, and trail hiking safety is an extremely serious issue. Following standard hiking safety tips not only ensures your own safety and that of your party but also fellow hikers who might be sharing the trail.
Everything from your food to the levels of sanitation you practice is essential in creating a safe hike and ensuring you get the very best from your experience. With everything carefully planned for your wellbeing, you can enjoy the hike as it was intended and do so in comfort and safety just by following a few simple backpacking tips.
The variety of wildlife is one of the main reasons why hikers enjoy this hobby, but it can also be one of the most dangerous aspects of it. Being out in the wilderness and unknown may be exhilarating but there are many potential dangers waiting around every corner.
Everything from venomous insects to large mammals and even poisonous plant life can pose a serious threat to your health and life when on a hike. Here are just a few of the most dangerous threats to your safety from nature when on a hike:
Backpacking safety means being prepared for all types of weather conditions, with everything from your clothing choices to protective wear considered. The weather accounts for a huge percentage of injuries and deaths when hiking, with sunburn, hypothermia, and more being potentially life threatening.
The best way to stay protected from the weather is to wear layered clothing as this can be added to or subtracted from to meet the different temperatures, and keep you covered in case of emergency. Long sleeves and a sensible pair of hiking boots designed specifically for rugged terrain will ensure you’re kept comfortable and protected from all weather conditions.
Not only is a long sleeve and sturdy hiking boot essential for keeping you warm, but they are also your best line of defense against insect bites and stings. On top of your protective clothing, you should also wear sunscreen and insect repellant and keep these regularly topped up during your hike.
An important part of hiking safety, but one that may not be as widely known, involves your sanitation practices and hygiene. Without adequate hygiene, you’re vulnerable to a range of water and foodborne diseases, as well as other bacteria and disease that can come from poor sanitation.
Follow these simple hiking tips to ensure good hygiene practices are in place, for both your safety and those around you:
Being prepared is the most important part of hiking, and having a backpacking first aid kit ensures you’re prepared for any of these safety issues. A first aid kit is a crucial part of hiking safety equipment that can treat burns, wounds, bites, and more.
Whether you prefer to pack a pre-made hiking first aid kit or assemble one for yourself, these lightweight additions to your supplies are a crucial piece of equipment. A good first aid kit should contain everything from antiseptic wipes to different sizes of dressings and closures.
Just as you should be prepared with your food and water supplies, and planning out your trail, safety is even more important. Being prepared for the range of unknowns that can strike in the wilderness means you’re equipped to handle anything.