It’s that time of the year when summer inspires us all to go outside and explore the great outdoors. With high temperatures and the risk of heat illness, it’s important to prepare. Today I’m sharing some tips to help you beat the heat on your summer adventures!
Tip #1 – ⛰️ Plan
Learn about heat related illnesses (Heat Stroke & Heat Exhaustion). Look up the weather forecast and park alerts before you plan your hike. Try to hike as early in the day as possible. Avoid hiking in the afternoon when the heat/sun is at it’s highest point. This time of year the sun does not set until after 9:30 pm. Evening hikes might be a cooler option! Just be sure to be safely off the trail before dark.
Tip #2 – 💧 Prepare
Bring extra water and stay hydrated. Many park trails do not have reliable water sources along the route. Any surface water in a park needs to be filtered or treated. For parks with water sources, use a water bottle with a filter and mark water points along your route before heading out. If the pups are coming along, pack a collapsible water bowl.
While it might be tempting to cool off in the river or lake at the park, check for “No Swimming” and “No Wadding” signs before you do. Many parks have bodies of water that might look like an inviting place to cool down, but in reality, are very dangerous. Many of these water bodies are very deceptive: the shoreline may have slippery rocks, and there may be strong currents and cold water temperatures that could lead to injury or death.
Take time to acclimate to the high altitude. Your body loses more fluids at high altitudes, increasing the risk of dehydration and heat-related illnesses.
Tip #3 – ☀️ Protect
The sun is out and it’s the time of year to make sure you have strong sunscreen, a hat, sunglasses and clothes that are light and breathable. Check your gear before you head out. Make sure to bring all the essentials – especially bear spray!
Tip #4 – 🏕️ Check In
Throughout your hike, check on yourself and your hiking companions to assess their condition. Heat related illnesses are very dangerous and can be deadly. If anyone feels unwell, stop hiking.
- Move to a shaded area
- Try to cool the person down by fanning them or soaking their shirt in water
- Call 9-1-1 or find a ranger for help
If anyone exhibits signs of heat stroke, contact the Park Rangers or 911 for assistance.
One Toasty Lemon