5 Tips on How To Make An Easy Hike Safe

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"Ted Nelson shares tips on how to make an easy hike safe here"

A guest post from Ted Nelson

Easy hiking, as its name hints, should be a leisurely and enjoyable activity, but anytime one ventures out into the great outdoors there are certain items to bring or lessons to follow that can avoid a dangerous situation.  There is always a risk when taking a hike into nature.

You hear it in the news all the time when people take a stroll outside and never return as they get lost, hit an unexpected storm, turn an ankle and the easy hike turns into a last hike or an emergency situation.

This article is not designed to scare people. With proper planning easy hiking should live up to its name.  If the hike is researched and the right items are carried, the likelihood of running into danger is remote.

5 Tips on How to Make an Easy Hike Safe

1.  Water

This is especially necessary if hiking in a humid or arid atmosphere like a desert or jungle.  If one gets lost and is low on water, dehydration causes confusion, so it can make it even more difficult to think properly and find your way back.  This danger can easily be avoided by bringing enough water and extra in case of emergency.

There are so many advances in technology regarding water carriers including dromedaries that strap around the back with a little hose that reaches your mouth, so dehydration on an easy hike should never happen.

2.  Bring a compass, GPS, map

Another area where technology has significantly increased, yet people continue to get lost on easy hikes.  Many people who easy hike neglect carrying a good map thinking it is only an easy hike.  This can be a big mistake.

3. Bring a snack

Even if only hiking a couple of miles it is a good idea to bring a couple of snacks.  Hunger can also confuse the mind.  If one gets lost a snack may restore the mind to healthy thought and make the difference in finding the way back.  A lot of people neglect a snack thinking they will be back in plenty of time before they get hungry.

4.  Know your limitations

If you are an easy hiker then take an easy hike.  If you are starting out and unsure of your limitations then take the easiest hike first and see how you feel.  Most parks and trail systems have short trails for beginners.  If they do not then walk 15 minutes out and then come back.

This seems like common sense as do the other tips, but it is amazing how many people over extend themselves when hiking because they try the hardest trail first and then find they cannot make their way back or cannot finish.  Most issues that arise while in the outdoors can be remedied by following common sense.

5.  Always hike with another person or let someone know your plans

The benefits of hiking with someone else are obvious.  Sometimes this is not possible.  If hiking solo, let someone know your plans.  In case you do not show up at the expected time steps can be taken quickly to find you.

Ninety-nine percent of easy hikes stay that way, and by following these steps the one percent that could lead to danger can be averted.  Stay safe and enjoy your hike.

Can you add other tips on how to make an easy hike safe?

Ted Nelson has been adventure travelling since he was 10 years old following around his dad. He has gone hiking, canoeing, and cross-country skiing all over the Chicago area, America, and the world. He has canoed with alligators in the Florida Everglades, been charged by a wild elephant in Thailand, and hiked sections of the Appalachian Trail. Follow him on Twitter @travelingted

6 comments to 5 Tips on How To Make An Easy Hike Safe

  • LeslieTravel

    Great tips! Thanks for sharing.

  • cool post Ted! I think that for the directionally challenged like moi, No.2 is the all essential! GPS could possibly save my life one day;)

  • Juno

    Oh nice article Ted. Your contents have several f my previouse mistakes. :-) I forgot to bring good snack this time in jeju and I didn’t wear a proper shoes in the hightest mountain in country. Hiking is not something extreamly hard and avoidable. Easy hiking, great word indeed.
    Nice article Ted! As usual :-)

  • Carol Canter

    Great tips. As obvious as they appear, we often overlook the obvious. After living in Hawaii for 9 years, an incredibly beautiful and benign environment — no poison oak, no venomous snakes, not even too many mosquitoes — I’ve learned how quickly an “easy” hike turns challenging — due to flash floods, slick trails, twisted ankles and more. Thanks for this important reminder!

  • The honour is ours, Ted, to have such a great post in our new site. These tips should be kept in mind by those interested in taking up easy hiking. Again, many thanks for taking the time to prepare this contribution.

  • It is an honor to guest post on this site. Good luck with the easy hike website and look forward to following it and watching it grow.

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