When traveling assume that a problem lies ahead and prepare for any eventuality. Every outdoor adventure has its own perils and regardless of your experience some common problems during a hike are worth remembering. 

When descending a hill or steep bank make sure that you are balanced so that you will fall backwards and into a position in which you can slide.  Your fall might disengage loose rocks, earth or snow which you will have to ride downhill.  Be prepared to jettison your backpack when traveling downhill.

Problems you can encounter are:

  • Slippery, slimy and moving stones while crossing a stream
  • Be aware that when crossing a stream on a fallen log, the log might break, move, be slippery or the rotten bark might slip off
  • Moss growth on rocks makes them slippery
  • The earth on, or below, a rock might give way
  • Morning dew can make rocks, logs and grass slippery
  • Morning hoar frost can also bring surprise the same as morning dew

Tips than can help keep you safe if you find yourself falling are:

  • Lean forward into into the fall and use your arms to give you some control over direction
  • Fall sideways, if possible
  • Try to aim toward open soft areas like grass or dirt and away from objects that can cause puncture wounds
  • Twist your shoulder to protect your head
  • Bend your knees and try to relax your body into a ball
  • Try to land on the softest and fleshiest parts of your body – your thighs and buttocks – to stop from rolling further and absorbing the force of the landing  

The more prepared you are and the more confidence you have, the more you will be able to ,,,

Remember the Great Outdoors!

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