Did you know that there are actually many different kinds of hikes, each teaching different sets of skills? In my article from last year, Learning Survival Through Hiking, I list and explain 10 different kinds of hikes and the skill sets taught by each.
Regardless of your reason why, rather for fitness, to practice bugging out, to develop new skills, or just to have fun with family and friends, I urge everyone to take up hiking this new year. Its easy to do, doesn't require expensive shoes or gear, and you don't need any special training to get started.
Never hiked before? Worried about not being in shape? Start slowly with easy hikes around your neighborhood, city, and nearby local, state, and national parks. Stick to easy daytime hikes on well-marked trails until you get some experience and confidence. You can slowly work your way up to longer and more difficult hikes.
Many areas have hiking clubs and organizations, where you can meet other hikers and get lots of tips and guidance as you start your new hobby. You might also want to check out the website for the American Hiking Society.
The Rules of Hiking
Stay safe by following these Rules of Hiking
1) Always check with your doctor before starting any exercise program.
2) Never hike alone. Always let others know where you are hiking and when to expect you back.
3) At least one person in the group should be familiar with the area where you are hiking.
4) Always wear appropriate shoes and clothing for the terrain and weather.
5) Each hiker should have a whistle and a flashlight in case they get separated from the group.
6) Each hiker should carry water, some extra food, and a small first aid kit with them at all times.
7) Be responsible: don't litter, be very careful with fire, follow posted rules, and respect private property.
Have fun with your new hobby!
Of Interest: Peterson Field Guides
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