The big vertical distances traveled on most hikes in the West Kootenay require good physical conditioning. The best way to get fit is to hike and increase elevation gain and weight carried. Going downhill can be more difficult for some with bad knees or quads not strong enough to handle the downhill. Walking around town for exercise may not prepare one for hiking. For someone who doesn’t hike regularly, an 11km round trip day hike or a hike with more than 1400 foot elevation gain will be very challenging.
LEAVE YOUR ITINERARY
Even if hiking in a group and especially if you’re going solo, leave your itinerary in writing with someone reliable. Agree on when they should alert the authorities if you have not returned or called. Be sure to follow through and notify your contact person on completion of the trip. Rescue teams often rescue their lives to find you.
Excessive loss of body heat can occur with surprising speed, even in relatively mild weather. Cool temperatures, wetness (perspiration or rain), wind, or fatigue, and usually a combination, sap the body’s warmth. Chills, shivering, poor coordination, slurred spedh, sluggish thinking and memory loss are next.
Wearing synthetic clothing that wicks moisture, bring proper clothing equipment and emergency food on hikes. If you can’t stay warm and dry, escape the wind and rain, turn back, keep moving, eat snacks, seek shelter. Remove wet clothing, insulate from the ground, lie naked next to each other, build a fire, feed sweets with carbohydrate and warm liquids.