First For Women
SAFETY TIPS FOR TRAIL HIKERS
Charting a course on unfamiliar trails can seem daunting— especially if you’re on your own. But these savvy tricks will ensure you’re prepared for anything you might encounter!
Plan for the worst Dr. Heskett suggests carrying a small basic first-aid kit with bandages and antiseptic ointment in case of slips or run-ins with prickly branches. And for instructions on how to treat common injuries, download the First Aid by American Red Cross app (free in the App Store and Google Play).
Give a pal your location “It’s always smart to alert someone who isn’t hiking with you to where you’ll be and when you expect to be back,” says Dr. Heskett. Don’t want to trouble your pals? Try the app Bugle (free in the App Store), which lets you enter emergency contact to be automatically notified if you don’t check in at a specified time.
Carry a whistle
A long-range whistle can signal to others in the area that you need help should you roll your ankle or encounter other issues. Hikers recommend the Fox 40 Classic Whistle ($9, Fox40shop.com), which can be heard up to a mile away.
Find a group
If hiking alone seems too intimidating (we’ve been there!), there are thousands of groups that meet up to hike together. To find one locally, visit Meetup.com/topics/hiking or HikingAndBackpacking.com/ hiking_clubs.html.