Traveling around the world alone as a female hiker may be seen as dangerous, risky and daunting but it doesn’t have to be. This article will focus on hiking tips for the solo female backpackers that will help them reduce the potential risks that may take place while hiking. This article also includes tips on how to deal with such situations.
1. Pick a well-marked trail
When finding a trail for your solo hike, choose one that is common and easy to navigate. That way, you don’t have to worry about getting stranded or lost. If possible, you can choose a trail you have been before. The more familiar you are to the trail, the better.Don’t forget you mark and/or take pictures of the trail junctions to help you remember the way you are going through.
2. Tell someone where you’re going
Don’t forget to inform a friend or a family member about the trail you are hiking, and the time you are planning to get back home. Do not forget to call when you return as you do not want to leave your friends and family worrying. In case something happens, your friends will know that you are missing. Once you have informed someone where you are headed, don’t change the plan and take a different trail – always ensure you stick to the original plan! You need everyone to have a precise idea of your whereabouts, so that you can be traced easily if needed.
3. Stop by the ranger station
Whenever you go hiking, don’t forget to check in the ranger’s station. Let them know that you will be hiking alone. Also, inform them that you will stop by on your way out. Be certain to clear your trail with a park ranger(s) – they’ll know which routes are open, safe, and best for solo hikers.
4. Read the weather report
If you are hiking and the weather turns bad, chances are you would not have time to go back to the ranger station or your vehicle without getting soaked. That’s why it is important to check the weather pattern and pay close attention to the sky before wearing your backpacks for travel and go. If you see hikers heading back in their car, that’s a good sign that you should also head back.
5. Know your fears
Every person has something he/she is afraid of especially when alone in the jungle; whether it is fear of bears/wild animals, fear of meeting strange people, or fear of survival in the back country accident. These fears have their solutions, from the bear’s spray to carrying the SPOT messenger a device to have a good headlamp. Whatever your fear is, try to figure it out in advance so that you can seek possible solutions even before encountering them.
6. Know your limitations
If you barely work out and get out breathe by simply walking to a mailbox and back, then you should not commit yourself a 7-mile hike. Be aware of what you are capable of. Try a neighborhood hiking first, in order to determine what you can achieve and how swift your pace is. Doing this will help you gauge your abilities when you hike solo in the woods.
7. Stick to the path
It seems that many disastrous hiking stories happen when someone takes a wrong turn willingly. However, tempting this might be, do not wander off into the woods and the trail.Your trampling may cause damage to animal and plant life. Even worse, you may step onto avalanches or think rock slides. Not only going off the trail is dangerous but it is also illegal in some national parks.
8. Bring supplies
Always bring with you the following in your backpacks for travel: a map, a sweater, a first-aid kit, a snack, and plenty of water. When you are alone, you would not have anyone to mooch you off. And convenience stores are not easy to come by especially when you are in the middle of a jungle. Be responsible; keep your blood-sugar level up, stay hydrated and take care not to catch cold. Since you are on your own, it is up to you to take good care of yourself.
9. Ensure your vehicle is well-maintained
There is nothing more annoying than getting back from hiking to the comfort of your car to find its engine dead, or worse, not being able to hike at all because your vehicle died on the way. Because a lot of hiking regions are away from town, on rural roads that do not see lots of traffic, you’d be in trouble if your vehicle breaks down. So, make sure your car is up to the task irrespective of highway driving or dirt roads and it will get you wherever you desire to go and take you back home safely.
10. Use common sense
Depending on yourself and being in charge are the curse and benefits of traveling alone. Travelling alone is definitely safe if you use your common sense: Do not walk down the dark alleys at night on your own, do not accept a lift from the strangers, and do not drink too much water. It can be quite easy to lower the guard when you’re traveling and having fun, but use your common sense as the baseline, and you’ll be okay.
11. Listen to your inner voice and trust your instincts
If something does not feel okay, then it is probably not. Whether it is a path which looks too dangerous, a climb looks too intense, skip it and turn to your car if that’s what your inner voice tells you. When hiking alone, taking risk don’t always worth it. The time for taking risks is when you are sitting on the couch, watching your favorite channel, and your husband opts to try a different recipe for dinner. That is a perfectly recommended moment to be adventurous.
So, there you have it! Exploring the wilderness as a solo female hiker is not so complicated. With enough knowledge and awareness, you are on your way to experience and discover what Mother Nature has to offer.
About the author: Hi, I’m Alice: A travel blogger, world adventurer, and life lover. Traveling the world at slow phase to immerse myself into what this wonderful world has to offer. Join me in my daily adventures at Fortravelista.com or on Twitter and learn tricks and tips for a cheaper, less hassle travel journey.