|Posted on June 11, 2016 at 4:05 PM|
Surviving Summer Heat | Summer Hiking Safety | Mountain Matron
Summer temperatures are on the rise and as an Arizona native I can certainly tell you there are a few tricks to safely surviving the triple digit heat of our summer. Listed below are our most successful tips and tricks for a safe and unforgettable summer outdoors.
It should be no surprise with more than half of your body made up of water that you need TONS of water in the summer heat. You will profusely sweat and lose important electrolytes, so not only will you need to make sure you take MORE WATER on your trek than normal, you need to be sure you’re pre-hydrating and post-hydrating, too. 24-48 hours before any low to high impact activity in the heat is critical. Your water intake should be increased to maintain 8-10 eight-ounce glasses daily before your low impact outdoor activity and you should continue to maintain that amount 24 hours after your activity is complete. (We DO NOT recommend any high impact outdoor activity during high temps.)
Medical professionals (for which I am not) suggest drinking 6ozs of water every 20 minutes during outdoor activity.
HYDRATION RULE OF THE DRY DESERT?
Once you’ve used half of the water you are currently carrying you turn back and get to a water source. The general idea is to keep you within a safe distance from water for your body’s current intake.
2. UPF CLOTHING
When spending hour upon hour of accumulative time under the sun, sunscreen isn’t enough. Invest in a quality lightweight long-sleeve top with UPF rating. Columbia®, ExOfficio®, and Woolx® have great options. You should also invest in a wide brim hat. Keep your facial skin covered, and protected from all the dangers and damage the sun causes to the delicate skin tissue. A wide brim hat will generally keep the back of your neck protected as well. We suggest you bundle sunscreen, a wide brim hat and proper clothing for better protection in prolonged sunlight.
3. AVOID DIRECT SUNLIGHT
This takes some commitment and research. You’ll need to start before sunrise and make your trek a quick one. Avoid trails with full exposure to the elements, find the trails you know offer shade and use it. DO NOT test new trails in high temperatures. Knowing your route and knowing it well is crucial to getting on and off the trail before the heat strikes.
Be aware and prepared for the rising temperatures to bring particular species out. In Central Arizona particularly, we find snakes and bees highly active during the summer months and bears in the higher regions. Stay clear of them all and remember, water sources are likely to draw desperate and dehydrated animals to view. Make sure you keep your distance. Understand the directive and dangers to each, and always leave wildlife, wild.
Editors Note: Are you traveling to a new region during summer months, maybe Arizona? Research the area and research the area some more. Contact the district rangers, camp hosts, and Municipal Recreation Departments about the local weather and how to stay safe BEFORE taking any trails in the area.
Stay Hydrated ~ Stay Prepared ~ Stay Safe
Disclosure: As with any outdoor activity you need to plan properly and adhere to all National, State and City ordinances. We only offer an insight to our own experiences and do not take any responsibility for you or any persons accompanying you on this or any outdoor recreation activities listed on this website or any other Mountain Matron Social Outlets.