Hiking Rules & Etiquette

Hiking Rules & Trail Etiquette

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There are some very basic Hiking Rules and Trail Etiquette that ensure that your Hiking experience does not damage the natural environment or the experience of fellow hikers. They are all common sense and they take little to no effort to follow. Be a good ambassador of Hiking and take the following guidelines into account:

Before you go Hiking

  • Know your own Physical, Mental and Technical Abilities and your Restrictions. Adjust your plans accordingly. In this way you can prevent problems that might cause personal injuries or injuries to others.
  • Make sure you are well informed about the trails you will take, the Hiking Terrain Conditions and the Hiking Weather Conditions. Have a detailed and up to date Hiking Map with you. Check with local authorities for last minute updates and first hand information.
  • Make sure to be Well Equipped for your intended Hike and Terrain/Weather conditions. Take enough food and drink to last you for your intended hike and bring extra.
  • Inform people of your itinerary and your expected time of return. If possible call or text message those who are not joining you at regular intervals so they know where you are.
  • Hike in a Group consisting of at least 2 fellow hikers. In case of an accident one person will then be able to stay with the injured while the other goes for help. Avoid hiking alone.

While Hiking

  • Be environmentally aware. Natural environments that facilitate great hiking experiences are being threatened enough as it is so do not add to this. Do not damage any plant life or wildlife that you may encounter.
  • Do not litter. Take all your waste with you and if you should stumble on somebody else�s waste be the better person and take it with you. Organic material, though decomposable, should be buried or taken with you to avoid animal feeding on it. All you should leave are your footsteps�
  • Urinate at a fair distance from the trail and possible water sources. For bigger �contributions� make sure to dig a hole. Use any fuel to burn any toilet paper that you might have used. Extinguish the fire and cover up the hole.
  • If you are going to use soap or detergent for washing yourself or clothes make sure to do it at least 100 meters from the nearest water source. Use biodegradable products.
  • Stay on the trails and do not go wandering off. By using the trails you ensure that you will not further disturb nature and it will minimize the chances of getting lost.
  • If you notice any damage to the trail or trail signs make sure to note down the exact location and notify the proper authorities. Damaged or destroyed trails or trail signs can cause serious difficulties for other hikers.
  • Do not disturb the environment by shouting or playing loud music. People go back to nature for the peace it has to offer.
  • If you plan to camp make sure that you know the local regulations concerning camping and making fires. Many places will have designated camping/fire areas and often it is illegal to camp or make fires outside of these designated areas.
  • Make sure you know the local regulations regarding fishing/hunting before you do so. In most cases you will need a local permit to fish or hunt.
  • If you plan to take your dog along for your hikes then make sure to check local regulations and keep your dog on a leash at all times if the local regulations require you to do so.

In general adhere to the local regulations and to the regulations of your own conscience….

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