INside the OUTside – Summer weather is here: time to get outside

by Dan Cassidy

It’s that time of year… even though we haven’t had enough poor weather conditions, and for those of you who are outdoor enthusiasts have had to put up with this Coronavirus COVID-19. It’s hard to imagine that the whole world has seemed to be shaking up, destroying lives and creating uprisings.

Take a hike

It’s time to get your hiking gear and plan a trek into Maine’s woods, mountains and lake regions. Let’s not get too excited and overdo yourself in climbing a high mountain range, bike an extended ride or not pack accordingly.

Although it looks like it’s going to be a shortened season, there are many opportunities to get in some single day and multi-day treks. Temps are rising steadily as the month of June wears on, and Caribou, Maine, of all places may soar into the high 90’s breaking all-time records.

A day trek …

Before we venture out, let’s make sure you have the proper gear for a day trek.

  • A lightweight backpack to carry some light food, water, warm waterproof rain gear.
  • Footwear – very important to keep feet both dry and safe for the terrain you’ll be hiking. Sneakers are not the proper footwear for hiking rough terrain.
  • Apparel should consist of waterproof wool layers that will keep you both dry and warm.
  • Hiking pole, such as a ski pole or walking staff will help maintain stability and strain on your knees.
  • Don’t forget to leave a copy of your trek behind so that if you should get lost or if you need to be contacted, timing may come into play. Always carry a compass.
  • Keep track of the weather before you venture out. Plan ahead for any inclement conditions.
  • Other gear should include a first aid kit, sunglasses, sun protection lotion, knife, toilet paper, whistle if you should get lost and a cell phone.

If you’re planning an overnight trip, you’ll need a backpack large enough to carry some extra gear. In addition to the gear you’ll need for a day hike, here are other essentials to consider:

  • Check out the weather forecast as to where you’ll be heading.
  • Food such as snacks, sports bars, sandwiches (peanut butter and jelly) and chocolate bars.
  • Stay hydrated. Don’t forget to carry plenty of water for an extended trek. You may want to consider water treatment tablets, as any water found on the trails should be treated before drinking.

Enjoy your day! It’s a great way to stay healthy, toned up and it’s a great exercise.

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