Nov 10, 2010 at 9:37 am #1265331
In this part of the country, backpacking in late-Oct and early-Nov can be a real pleasure. You get to enjoy the last moments of Fall and taste the beginning of winter at the same time. Also, you get to enjoy a good deal more solitude on the trails.
At the same time, there are some additional safety concerns. Last weekend I was out hiking during "Youth Deer Weekend." I survived, but it got me wondering what additional precautions others take to stay safe during hunting season. These are may *additional* safety measures:
1. Only hike in heavy snow areas, where the trail starts above 2,500 feet;
2. Blaze orange hat, vest, and backpack/markings on pack; and
3. Hike with one or more RNs.
This pretty much means that there's only one place in the state where I hike during this season. Do others hike during hunting season or take the time off? If you do hike, what safety measures do you take to minimize the risk?
*NOTE: PLEASE do not turn this into a hunting/gun debate. This is not the point of this thread.*Nov 10, 2010 at 12:23 pm #1662919
@cobbermanLocale: Northern Colorado
I try and avoid trails with significant foliage and keep to higher routes above treeline so that I'm less likely to be in prime deer habitat and that I'm more visible as a non-deer. I keep a blaze orange vest handy and throw that over my gear as an additional indicator if my clothing does not appear to be bright enough.
It is also a good time to visit national parks. If I'm not mistaken, all or most of them do not allow hunting within their borders. It's also when most tourists have fled from cooler temps too.Nov 10, 2010 at 12:26 pm #1662920
what part of the country are you talking aboutNov 10, 2010 at 12:37 pm #1662926
@nerdboy52Locale: "Alas, poor Yogi.I knew him well."
Oy. Tell me about it.
In Ohio, you pretty much wear blaze orange for months. I was walking Wildcat Hollow one fine autumn (just last year) when I rounded a corner around a boulder and came face to face with a bow hunter with a crossbow aimed right at my sternum.
Apparently, "Hunting permitted, but not on hiker trails" leaves this guy cold. Now, if I'm walking around blind curves, I sing my favorite tune, "Hiker on the trail . . . dum de dum . . . HIKER ON THE TRAIL."
Ah, how I love the sound of gunfire in the morning . . . . :-)
P.S. This is not meant to be a disparagement of hunters — only irresponsible ones.
P.P.S. So what is it about Bud Light that makes it the beer of choice for hunters? That's another thing about the trails during the hunting season — the piles of Bud Light cans.Nov 10, 2010 at 12:40 pm #1662927
Littering ruins everything. My pack has orange on it:Nov 10, 2010 at 12:48 pm #1662933
@bcampriniLocale: Southern Appalachians
Ike, you don't need to sing or wear blaze orange. Just keep your electric toothbrush going all day ;-)Nov 10, 2010 at 12:51 pm #1662936
I was planning to go on a solo overnight this weekend in a well-traveled hunting area.
I'll be small game hunting while I'm there as well.
I've never been rattled by the idea of trekking in a hunting area, but there are certainly precautions to take. From a hunter's perspective, I can only hope everyone else follows the same safety precautions I do. If I couldn't get comfortable with that assumption, I wouldn't go.
The biggest concern, I think, lies if one is hiking off trail, especially during dawn/dusk hours. If I'm going to be off trail/in the brush, wearing some blaze orange is a good idea. I'll wear a hat and pin a bandanna to the back of my pack. Being mistaken for game has never crossed my mind; it's a matter of simply being visible so a hunter knows you're down range.
Otherwise, I don't worry. If I was the type to worry, I'd be more concerned about dying on my drive to the trailhead.Nov 10, 2010 at 2:19 pm #1662961
That thing is actually pretty loud.Nov 10, 2010 at 3:05 pm #1662970
@hikinggrannyLocale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge
One of the few good things about getting old and being retired is that I only go out during the week, so I miss the majority of the hunting population. I do wear a blaze orange vest (big enough for both me and my pack, lol!). Since I discovered that cougar season in Oregon is year-around, my golden Lab now wears a blaze orange neck scarf all the time when we go out!
Aren't those youth hunters supposed to be under adult supervision?Nov 10, 2010 at 3:53 pm #1662988
MN has a 2 week/3weekend firearms deer hunting season during which I stay out of the woods except for certain larger state parks which I know will not be hunted (some do get hunted once in a while, mainly for population control reasons).
The rest of the fall hunting seasons I try to wear something that is blaze orange (if only a hat) and my pack cover is blaze orange,Nov 10, 2010 at 3:57 pm #1662989
@retropumpLocale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
You guys are lucky! In this country, hunting season (for anything) is year round. However I don't take any special extra precautions. Last weekend a group of hunters shot and carried a large boar for several hours along the track we were on. I mostly trust hunters to follow the rules and always identify their targets. Most of the hunting accidents seem to be hunters shooting other hunters in their own party!Nov 10, 2010 at 6:57 pm #1663036
@ouzelLocale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
" Most of the hunting accidents seem to be hunters shooting other hunters in their own party!"
We call it The Dick Cheney Syndrome in the US of A.
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