Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Tips for Hiking or Walking During the Pandemic


Tips for Hiking or Walking During the Pandemic


Tips for Hiking or Walking During the Pandemic

Some of us are able to go out for a hike or a neighborhood walk while under a stay-at-home order. I have been hiking while practicing social distancing and other precautions for several weeks now. Here are some tips from my experiences:


  1. First check the regulations in your state, county and city before researching where to head.
  2. Refresh yourself on social distancing rules and whether wearing a mask is required.
  3. Be prepared to step to the side. When walking with family, walk in single file if you can to make it easier to pass other hikers at the appropriate distance.
  4. Research preserves BEFORE going out to make sure they are open and accessible.
  5. If the preserve you have chosen looks too busy, skip it and go to another if you have the option. I usually have  a list with me of several in a similar location.
  6. Bathrooms will not be open. So, keep this in mind and do not bite off more than you can choose distance wise! Stay closer to home.
  7. Remember not to touch things while hiking. I saw quite a few kids touching signs with bare hands on my hikes. Some of these motions are so natural that we forget!
  8. If you are hiking with kids, keep them close so that it is easier to maintain the appropriate distance.
  9. Do not walk several people abreast. It makes it difficult for other hikers to move over adequately.
  10. Dress appropriately for the weather and terrain. Also, I would wear hiking shoes or others that can take the mud in case you have to walk off the trail to move away from other hikers.
  11. Don't forget your normal hiking items like sunscreen, bug spray, water and a snack.
  12. Do not leave gloves and masks in the preserve! They will harm animals and find their way into water systems.
  13. Take out what you take in still applies. I have noticed an uptick in refuse as well as leaving dog poop. 
  14. Be mindful and try not to make assumptions about a couple or the structure of a family. I have heard several times this week of walkers calling out families for not following social distancing when they actually are families living together. 
  15. Pause when you safely can and absorb the scene. Nature is excellent for easing anxiety, calming and igniting creativity. Enjoy!
Tips for Hiking or Walking During the Pandemic

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