The crisp, clear days, thin crowds, and vivid colors that define the high country this time of year are all the motivation you need to lace up your boots and hit the trails until the Christmas music starts. Here are just a few things to keep in mind to ensure a fun and safe season of hiking:
1. Be aware of hunting seasons
Fall begins hunting season in many areas. Hunting season not only presents the need for extra safety precautions, but also brings about temporary trail closures and re-routes in certain areas.
2. Pack Smarter
It’s important to be prepared on any hike, but especially in the fall. If you’re staying overnight bring the essentials: food, water, map, compass, headlamp with fresh batteries, etc.
An emergency blanket with a decent length of parachute cord or survival bracelet is useful as an emergency shelter or tarp.
3. Be prepared for changes in temperature
Temperatures can change 20 or even 30 degrees throughout the day. Pack an extra layer in case your hike takes longer than you expect and the temperature begins to drop.
4. Choose your destination wisely
The best fall hiking experience is a perfect combination of timing and location. Many trails this time of year will be bursting with fall colors, while others many be under a foot of snow. If you’re not familiar with your local area, chat with a ranger and get recommendations for best hikes in your area or find a regional hiking blog.
5. Be prepared for shorter daylight hours.
In the summer you can hike in the light until after 9 p.m., but in the fall the sun starts to set much earlier. It’s easy to lose track of time during a hike and not realize sunset is approaching. Make sure you take a flashlight or headlamp on your hikes, even if you don’t think you’ll be out after dark.
6. Have extra power in case you run out of battery
Premium Solar Power Bank can charge phones, headlamps or other electronic devices.