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How To Stay Safe When Hiking

Last year quickly became the year of ‘going for a walk’. For a lot of us who were under government enforced lockdown, going on a walk was pretty much all we could do to get out of the house most days! Walking is a great way to get fit, connect with nature and feel more active, but when you start taking your walks more seriously and going on more adventurous, longer hikes, then you do need to start considering your safety. As with any outdoors activity or sport there are risks to consider, so we wanted to share some useful advice for anyone new to hiking, on how to stay safe when hiking.

Before you start your next hike, we’d recommend considering the following:

The Right Footwear

As soon as you make the decision to start getting into hiking seriously, we’d advise investing in a quality pair of hiking shoes or boots. It’s worth doing your research to find a pair that are best suited for your needs – for example, will you be going on longer hikes on flat terrain? Or maybe hiking for shorter periods of time but on steep inclines? If you’re planning on varying your walks, then you’ll want to find a decent pair of all-rounders, which will be comfortable and supportive in any condition. When it comes to deciding on trainers vs. boots, we’d recommend starting with trainers. They tend to be more comfortable and not require any ‘breaking in’, making them ideal for beginners. However, once you start doing hikes which require more ankle support, then you might find a boot gives you that additional support you need.

Did you know, if you already own a pair of safety trainers or safety boots, you can actually wear these for hiking? Though we’d recommend only wearing them on longer hikes if you’re sure they’re lightweight and comfortable enough first. Otherwise, you might end up with some painful blisters!

Basic First Aid Equipment

Once you start getting more adventurous on your hikes, and decide to start taking longer or steeper routes, then naturally your risk of accidents does increase. Whilst these risks are still incredibly small, especially if you’re wearing the right supportive footwear, they can still happen. Which is why we’d recommend packing a small first aid kit in your rucksack, just to be on the safe side. It’s a good idea to have a small stash of bandages, plasters and anti-bacterial spray or wipes with you in case you trip or fall – especially if you’re hiking alone. On that note, you should always carry a fully charged mobile phone with you too, in case of an emergency – or even if you just get a bit lost.

Stay Dry and Warm

Thanks to the great English weather, if you’re going out on a hike locally, then you might need to prepare for all eventualities. Investing in good waterproof clothing is essential – even just a lightweight waterproof jacket with a hood, which you can roll up small and keep in your rucksack. There’s nothing worse than being caught in a downpour mid hike, and having to walk home wet through to your skin. Being prepared makes all the difference! As the saying goes, there’s no such thing as bad weather, only unsuitable clothing.

Stay Seen

Although we’re now heading into Springtime, and the evening and mornings are gradually getting lighter earlier, if your hike takes you anywhere near a road, then we’d advise considering some hi vis clothing. If you’re unsure where to start, a basic hi vis vest which you can pop on over your hiking gear is a great piece to start with. Hi vis vests are lightweight, comfortable to wear, but still provide you with an increased visibility – particularly when it starts getting darker.


Most importantly, we hope you enjoy your new hobby! Hiking is a great activity to take up, not only is it great for your physical health, but being surrounded by fresh air and nature is great for your mental health too. Stay safe and enjoy the views!

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