• 530.541.3420 | 2170 South Avenue, S. Lake Tahoe, CA
Hiking Outdoors

Adventure Checklist

Longer days and warmer weather invite adventure. But even the most experienced explorer should prepare for unknowns when hitting the trail. This checklist can help:

Buddy up. Adventuring with a partner is not only more fun, but it can be crucial in an emergency. Also, share your plan with another trusted person before venturing out, including where you are going and when you plan to return, and stick to it.

Know your limits. Choose activities that suit your physical condition. The pace should be comfortable for the slowest member of your group. 

Dress the part. Wear layers to account for changing weather. Don sunglasses and a hat or visor in the sun. Apply sunscreen no matter the season.

Fuel up and leave no trace. Travel with adequate food and water—at least .5 liters of water for every hour of hiking. Don’t feed wildlife or leave trash behind.

Check the forecast. Check weather conditions and know the signs for approaching storms. Avoid bare ridge tops, exposed places, lone trees, streams, and rocks during lightning storms.

Keep solid footing. Stay on developed trails or dry, solid rock areas with good footing, especially on steep terrain or near cliffs. Trees and bushes can’t be trusted to hold you. Be alert for slippery areas and take your time to avoid tripping.

Play it safe. Carry a first aid kit and learn the symptoms of heat exhaustion, heatstroke, hypothermia, and dehydration.

Finally, pay attention to local safety tips and regulations. If you get hurt, call 911, or head to the emergency room.

Dr. Kim Evans is a board-certified surgeon and the Trauma Medical Director at Barton Health. Barton’s Level III Trauma Center provides medical services for trauma care 24 hours a day. Learn more at BartonHealth.org.