If you’re thinking about hiking the Appalachian Trail you may be dreaming of ultra-scenic vistas, peaceful streamside campsites, and eating all the candy bars your heart desires without gaining any weight….
Hiking Safety and Risk Management
While hiking is arguably the most ‘risky’ time of a backpacking trip, most of us spend more time hanging around the campsite. We might be more likely to fall and get banged up while actually walking and moving around in the backcountry, but there are also a whole set of different risks that can present themselves after we settle into camp for the night. [Read more…] about Campsite Safety Tips
Guest Post by: Shawn Michaels
Tip # 1: Dress like an onion.
Well, it’s a saying which means to add layers in your outfit. This is very significant while hiking in colder climate, since the temperatures at the bottom and the summit of a mountain are way different. Using warmer pieces of clothing will aid you control your body temperature and you will stay at ease. I usually wear long socks, gloves, turtle neck sweater, jacket, and waterproof pants. I also recommend that you keep a wrap in your backpack in case the weather gets crazier.
Tip # 2: Start hiking early.
When I announced my plan to thru-hike the Appalachian Trail to friends and family, I heard this one a lot - 'what if a bear attacks?' 'what if you get eaten by a bear?'
Always asked genuinely, with fear and a little bit of panic behind their voices.
Now a days, at least in America, there are no longer any rivers or streams considered pristine enough to drink straight out of.
Every water source is potentially (and probably) contaminated with harmful bacteria such as giardia and cryptosporidium. Those little bugs can make any hiker sick enough to have get off the trail and sit toilet side for days or even weeks.
Some of the most common questions, and anxieties, about the Appalachian Trail are about bears.
I can't count how many times I was asked, "What about bears?" "Aren't you afraid of bears?" "Are bears dangerous out there?" And so on.
Yes, there are definitely bears on the AT! I haven't met too many hikers who haven't seen a black bear on the trail. But encountering a bear doesn't have to be scary or dangerous... as long as you don't do anything stupid.
Read on, and learn from my mistakes people.