Tell people where you are going, when you will be back and a plan.
Before you set out in the mountains or any other area which is far from the “beaten path”, call and/or email/SMS/Whatsapp/Messenger etc someone about your plan. Include the following:
- Where you are going
- What time you are leaving
- What route you will take
- What time are you expected back
Once you are back, make sure you inform them. If for some reason, you are delayed, they should call the proper authorities after a grace period (SAR – Search and Rescue, Police, Emergency services in your area)
Carry the essentials
Carry the 10 Essentials. It is extremely important to have the proper gear. The weather can be unpredictable and you want to be well prepared if an unexpected situation where to happen. Also, you can have an unexpected situation such as an injury or getting lost. It is essential (no pun intended) to be prepared. Here are the 10 Essentials:
- Navigation (map and compass)
- Sun protection (sunglasses and sunscreen)
- Insulation (extra clothing)
- Illumination (headlamp/flashlight)
- First-aid supplies
- Fire (waterproof matches/lighter/candles)
- Repair kit and tools
- Nutrition (extra food)
- Hydration (extra water)
- Emergency shelter
Bring a basic first-aid kit
Already mentioned in the 10 Essentials above. This is extremely easy to put together and chances are you have most of what you need at home.
- Bandages (Fabric)
- Anti Bacterial Ointment
- Gauze Pads
- Pain Relief Medication
- Adhesive Tape
It is a good idea to get a pre-packaged kit. Some ideas below (Amazon links):
Be Bear Aware
Bears will USUALLY go out of their way to avoid you.
Dont feed bears
Make sure have you have enough water
Covered under Essentials but this one is worth repeating. Take more then you think you will need.
Try to avoid hiking in inclement weather
Stay at home and do something else if there is a lightning storm. The mountain is not going anywhere 🙂
Go with friends
I like the solitude of hiking but it is hard to argue, especially if you are a new hiker, that it is safer to go with friends. It can be more fun too.