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Forest Alone: 4 Safety Tips for Winter Hiking

Winter hiking is as exciting as in the summertime and has an even more significant impact on your physical and mental health. [...]

Winter hiking is as exciting as in the summertime and has an even more significant impact on your physical and mental health. However, winter outdoor activities require much more thoughtful and attentive preparation due to weather conditions. Hiking and backpacking will take much more time and energy in winter than in warmer seasons, even if you choose a trail that you have hiked before.

Thus, it is essential to make your safety a priority, so here is what you need to know before you set off for a new adventure:

Plan Your Trip

Planning your hike will allow you to determine all the necessary things such as the amount of clothing and food you need to take with you. Also, it will allow you to allocate yourself some time to learn essential skills like how to use a compass first aid training, and find additional equipment.

Prepare Physically

It is vital to evaluate your physical capabilities before the trip, plan and adjust your training to the trail that you will be conquering, and get in shape! It will allow you to increase your stamina before the hike instead of risking your health on the go.

Dress Properly

The best thing you can do to keep yourself warm and protect yourself from hypothermia is dress in layers. Pick clothing pieces that can be easily removed will ensure you can adapt to the environmental conditions better and pack some extra dry clothes as well. It is also crucial to pick a proper pair of hiking boots to make your trail less tiresome and get rain gear as the forest’s weather can be unpredictable.

Determine Other Risks

It is not recommended to go hiking alone, so it is your opportunity to take some time and find yourself a hiking partner or a group hiking program. If you still decide to walk alone, make sure you inform your family members about which trail you have chosen and when you plan to return.

It will also help if you learn more about wilderness areas you are heading to, for example, locate ranger stations or the presence of avalanche terrain. Always bring with you a fire starter, signaling device, and first aid kit.

Check out the infographic below provided by specialists from My Open Country to find out more hiking safety tips:

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Laura Bartlett

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