Tips for Safe Hiking
During COVID-19
Planning Your Backpacking Trip
Minimize the need for support from others
Research to make sure the trail you want to hike is open to the public and that parking, hiking, and camping are all legal.
If you absolutely need to use public services such as campsites, restrooms, shuttles, and ranger offices, make sure that they are open, select a trip plan that does not require your use of these services.
Keep your adventures local and accessible by car. Avoid using public transportation and hospitality services to get to and from the trailhead, including planes, buses, taxis, ride sharing, and shuttles.
Find a campsite instead of staying in a hotel or motel. Make getting there part of your adventure.
Pack all of the supplies you’ll need rather than rely on the grocery stores or supply stores near your trail.
Identify hospitals and medical centers near your trail and know how to get there in case of an emergency, or if someone in your group feels sick.
Study your map and identify exit routes in case of minor medical issues on the trail, and be prepared to self-evacuate.
Pack a comprehensive medical kit so you can tend to minor injuries on the trail.
Have a quarantine plan for your return in case someone in your group gets sick, or if you suspect someone has been exposed.
Buy travel insurance to protect your investment.
Getting to and from the Trailhead
Minimize contact with service providers during your travel
If this is a group trip, avoid carpooling with people who don’t live in your household.
If anyone in the group has any symptoms, stay behind or cancel the trip all together.
Use a mask and gloves at gas stations, when picking up food, or visiting a restroom or grocery store.
Wash your hands often and use hand sanitizer even more often.
While You’re on the Trail
Minimize contact with group members not from your household and avoid other travelers on the trail
Camp in the wilderness at least 100 feet away from other campers instead of camping in crowded campgrounds.
Avoid populated beaches and seek pristine and remote alpine lakes and rivers. When backpacking in a group, keep your distance at all times including rest stops, meals, and camping.
Don’t share tents, cooking equipment, food, maps, medical kits or personal items with people who do not live in your household. Each family should be self sufficient.
Bring masks and gloves on the trail and use them in case close human contact is inevitable, like administering first aid.