Hiking Gear and Safety Guide
How To Plan A Hike At The Cabin
The right clothes, equipment and planning ensure the time spent exploring the woods around the cottage is safe and enjoyable. Hiking at the cottage is a great way to get exercise, educate the family and experience the best of nature.
Planning a Hike – Before You Go
The proper preparation is the key to an enjoyable hike.
- Plan the hike carefully with all members of the group.
- Get an up-to-date map.
- Buy a GPS and learn how to use it.
- Buy spare batteries for the GPS.
- Check the weather forecast.
- Leave details of the hike with someone.
- Plan to reach your campsite or finish your day-hike well before dusk.
Things To Take On The Hike
The length and location of the hike will determine your specific requirements. Always plan for the unexpected.
- Adequate backpack.
- Field Guide.
- Water of at least 500ml for every hour.
- Water purification tablets.
- Food that includes nuts, dried fruit, and jerky.
- Wide brimmed hat to keep the sun away.
- Hiking boots with good ankle support for rough ground.
- Long sleeve shirt that is light but keeps the bugs off.
- Long pants that are light and comfortable, yet prevent scrapes, and bug bites.
- Hiking socks that are not cotton. Take 2 pairs.
- Sun glasses with high UV protection and a a support band or string.
- Walking stick or hiking pole that is light and sturdy.
- Rain poncho that covers you and your backpack.
Hiking Safety Kit
Always take a safety kit, even on short hikes that you know well.
- Insect Repellent.
- Mole Skin for blisters.
- Band Aids.
- Tensor Bandage.
- Gauze Pads.
- Tweezers and a sterilized pin or needle for removing slivers.
- Antibiotic ointment.
- Aspirin or another painkiller.
- Compass that you know how to use well.
- Matches, lighter, candles, flashlight, batteries.
- Length of 30 – 50 metres of rope.
- Utility knife.
Hiking Safety Tips
Hiking safety is all about using common sense.
- Stay on the planned trail.
- Do not go exploring or chasing after wildlife. You can get completely lost only 10 metres into the bush.
- Stay with the group.
- Let the slowest person lead and set the pace.
- Avoid stepping on logs, roots, stumps. Damp wood is slippery and will cause a fall or a turned ankle.
- Stay focused. It is easy to daydream and take the wrong path.
- Mark the trail when it has become overgrown or otherwise not obvious.
- Stop, turn around and frequently take note of key landmarks behind you if you plan to re-trace your route.
- Watch out for paths frequently used by deer and other animals that may resemble and merge with the main trail.
- Watch your time and daylight. If you are moving more slowly than planned, cut the hike short.
- Take frequent breaks.
- Stay hydrated.
- Air out your feet at lunch.
Respect The Hiking Trail
Keeping the trail pristine is in everyone’s best interest.
- Always carry out whatever you carry in.
- Keep the noise down – hike quietly.
- Cook on a portable gas stove and clean-up everything (leave the site as you found it or cleaner).
Relieving Yourself On A Hike
Be at least 100 meters from water sources and bury everything.
Note: Do a few short practice hikes before heading out on a more ambitious trek. This will help break-in new boots, refine water and food requirements, brush-up on navigation skills and give new hiking partners the chance to bail out before it is too late.