Trek Canada and be safe
Canada’s wilderness is a hiker’s paradise. Whether you are a fanatic backcountry hiker to trek Canada or you are just up to it for a one-time experience, planning well is the key to staying safe on the trails.
When hiking, you will see the beauty of nature around you and smell all the fragments in the air. You will listen to the squeak of the bald eagle soaring up high in the sky or the cry of a loon on a lonely lake.
Whether you are a fanatic backcountry hiker or you are just up to it for a one-time experience, a hiking trip will add to your travel memories.
Canada offers treasures of hiking possibilities. You can hike for days without seeing a soul. Canada’s famous National Parks, Provincial Parks, and the Crown land surrounding the parks are hiker’s heavens. Let’s hope that all the hikers who spend time in this amazing country will get appreciation and enjoyment out of it; that they will learn to respect the environment and the land.
First, decide whether it is a multi-day trek or a single-day hike you’re after, and then start with planning.
Safety On The Trail
Hikers in Canada are expected to follow the basic rules for wilderness travel for their own safety. Special websites and books cover that in detail. Here are just a few suggestions for your Trek Canada Adventure.
- Plan your hike well. Choose a trail suited to your endurance and skills, and that of your group.
- Familiarize yourself with a map and trail description.
- Leave an outline of your intended trip, location, and time to return. Leave this with someone who will respond if you are missing, in the case of an emergency.
Trek Canada In Groups
- You’re advised to travel in groups of at least three hikers if possible. In the case of an emergency, someone can get help while the other stays with the injured person.
- Remember, a group is only as strong as the weakest member!
- Make sure that everyone is emotionally and physically prepared for your chosen hike.
- Find out whether you need a 4WD to access the trailhead.
- Whether you’re hiking in British Columbia or in the Yukon or in any other province, it’s a good idea to have a car with good clearance. The chance is that you will come across washouts and rough gravel roads with big rocks and potholes along the way.
- Access to the trailhead is often an old forestry road (skid road).
- Most of the official trails have an outhouse at the trailhead and a picnic table.
- If you have a hiking book about the particular trail, it will prescribe the way from the main road to the trailhead, using the car km dial.
- Keep track of where you are by looking at natural landmarks, trail signs, maps, and compass.
- Be sure to keep track of time when in the higher alpine. Distances can be deceptive.
- Be prepared for sudden weather changes.
- Don’t abandon a set of trails to take a shortcut or detour – this can be risky!
- Carry enough food and water for the trip. Hiking is strenuous and uses lots of energy.
- Bring extra food in case you are out longer than planned.
- Carry a good amount of water. To rely on natural water sources can be might be a bad idea.
Backcountry Hiking in Canada – what hazards can you expect
- Inform yourself about safe wilderness travel. There are many great books available on that subject.
- The consequences of having an accident in the mountains can easily become serious.
- Hiking in the backcountry can be treacherous because of the rugged terrain and harsh climate.
- Temperatures can vary from brutally hot to extreme cold.
- Hypothermia and dehydration are serious. Assistance can take a long time to arrive.
So, if you decide to trek Canada’s wilderness, be prepared!
- Being lost at some time is inevitable for those who hike often in the mountains. Most times you can call it temporarily misplaced.
- Before leaving for the wilderness, know the route.
- Carry a map and compass and know how to read them
- Small first aid and survival kit
- Adequate water
- Enough food high in calories
- The topographical map of the area and compass are the orientation tools.
- A GPS if you know how to use it and spare batteries
- Fire-making equipment is a lifesaver – Waterproof matches, lighter or flinch in a waterproof bag.
- A large plastic garbage bag can be used as an emergency as a waterproof shelter.
- Bear spray
- Consider downloading my recommended Canadian camping apps
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