Hiking is a rigorous walking activity that includes moderate climbs and descents. Though hiking is quite different from trekking in terms of the methods and the risk factors involved, there are certain rules that are to be followed while hiking.
Hiking is also way different than just a road trip and has its own precaution measures to be followed. Here is a list of then things that one must avoid while hiking:
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Never go off the trail
No matter how familiar you are, one should avoid going off the trail while hiking. You never know what the trail is like ahead or how safe it is in terms of wild animals and where it ends. Going off the trail can prove fatal in case of extreme conditions.
Never play loud music
One must respect nature while hiking in the woods or in the mountains. The loud noise from your speaker might entertain you for a while but causes a lot of disturbance to the wild animals and birds who are intolerant towards the loud noise and the frequency emitted from phones and speakers.
Never wear headphones while walking
Music has become an integral part of our life and we tend to plug in our earphones now and then, especially while walking alone. Try to avoid wearing headphones during hiking because you need to be fully attentive to your surroundings. You need to intercept any strange voices that can be of a rockfall or landslide or an approaching animal. While travelling in a group, if you are wearing headphones, you might not be able to hear the call of your friend who might be in need or warning you of something.
Never drink alcohol while hiking
Alcohol affects our brain and spinal cord coordination that results in the jittery walk of the person. Your brain would not be able to make wise decisions if needed, under the influence of alcohol and while hiking you need to be fully active, both physically as well as mentally. One should avoid smoking as well because while hiking you tend to breathe much heavier and smoking affects your lungs capacity.
Never eat wild fruits
No matter how tempting those wild red berries look or how juicy the ripe fruits are looking, don’t eat anything that you are not sure about. Often the berries and especially mushrooms found on trails are poisonous. One should have complete knowledge about it before consuming it.
The damage we do by littering on the mountains or the trails is irreversible which cause an adverse effect on the whole ecology and our climate. Thus, we should travel like a responsible hiker and should bring back the waste down to the base where we can dump it in proper dustbins.
Never attend nature’s call near the stream
You may find that no one is using the stream water in your vicinity but a lot of villages in the plains use the same water for drinking and other household purposes. Never attend nature’s call near a stream or wash utensils in it. Take water in your bottle and do your chores away from the stream.
Never ignore any medical condition
While on a hike, one’s body may react in a different way due to certain gain in elevation. You should never hide your medical condition from your travel partners or even if you are hiking alone, tell it to people you meet on the way. Make ‘safety first’ as the thumb rule of your hiking plan.
Never hike in the dark
Make sure to reach the destined place before sunset. Hiking in the dark can prove really dangerous. The chances of falling prey to wild animals increases in the dark and also, you may go astray from the right path.
Never click photos while walking
Many people click photos on their phone while walking just to save some time or to meet the pace of fellow travellers. But this may result in some serious injuries if you happen to fall down. Always stop and then click photos and also, don’t stop at risky areas such as those prone to landslides or narrow trails.
Hiking is a fun activity and it would be more fun if you take care of these points. Just ensure the safe return of yourself and your fellow partners by keeping a few things in mind. One mistake and it could cause some serious outcomes. Adventure feeds your soul but one should be wise enough to know how to get things done in a proper way.