How to prepare for a hike in the mountains?

Here are some tips that are considered useful for a successful hike in the mountains:
-make the right choice of route and prepare it well:
The first question to ask is: how is one physically? That is, what are our capabilities? Could we take a walk of more than an hour, for example, are we healthy,..? For athletes or hikers who are used to this activity, this question may be surpassed, but it is especially a question for beginners. This question is necessary to know the type of route you will choose (easy between 1h-6 hours of walking, or difficult from 6 hours of walking and more) it is also valid for the route (short of a day to the max, or long up to 15 days or more).
The second question is, if we are in a group (of 2 or more people), what kinds of people are with us? (children, adults, women, men, the elderly,..) because this does not involve the same route and route. Our itinerary will depend on these people so we will have to check in the guides or topo the route that we will choose and complete the information in the tourist offices to give us advice.

-well prepare physically and psychologically:

As mentioned earlier, knowing the state of one’s health is the most important before going hiking. Thus, consulting your doctor is one of the most important steps, and this is also necessary after the hike. It should be noted that even if the mountain air is less polluted, the oxygen pressure of the ambient air is reduced as the altitude rises. And it is indeed this decrease in the amount of oxygen available that could be the result of minor worries such as acute mountain sickness, or worse pulmonary edema and high altitude cerebral edema.
Thus it is important to know one’s real or potential abilities, this implies not underestimating or overestimating one’s physical ability.
Then do training, such as walking from 1-2 hours to start, run, bike and mountain bike, swim,….These physical exercises are advised so that the muscles are more toned and well prepared (this can avoid aches, cramps, fatigue too quickly,..).
Finally at the mental level, adventures such as hiking often reserve softenings, i.e. things that o did not expect or that were not simply thought of: rain, cold, big gale, great heat , ,… So the best solution is to always be aware of the weather.
One very important thing, too, is respect for Aboriginal people. You should always ask them when in doubt, you have to respect their cultures, their flora and fauna, and then, always listen! High-flying characters or strong heads are not welcome in some areas. This is also true for our pets (dogs, cats) so don’t let them go free, you never know!

-know how to prepare the ground

Even if we chose our itinerary, route,.. and although we take our topos, GPS and everything else, in order to avoid any mishaps, we must always clearly mark his hiking terrain, ie, the starting and arrival point, the different places for the break, do we pass by a lake, a River.. because this can change our rhythm, then although this step does not seem useful for some, it is necessary to do so in order to escape some surprises.
-Prepare the best equipment (clothes, food, various materials,…)
According to Pierre Jezequel, the mountain hiking guide for UCPA “Whatever the length of your hike, we team up”.
First let’s talk about clothing, because of course we need to know what kinds of clothes and shoes do we wear on a hike in the mountains: for summer clothes, it will be light underwear, tank tops, shorts, spare socks, light canvas pants, T-shirts, hats or caps, pairs of glasses, and you still have to make room for a jacket just in case! (a gale,..) . For winter clothing, warm underwear, fleece jackets, several sock areas, hoods, gloves, gorre-tex pants (which can be removed as needed), a down jacket, and finally the multi-purpose element, the scarf. Finally, in rainy season: raincoats, kaway, raglan, rain boots, …

For shoes, you should opt for those that are specially designed for hiking of course, also called “trekking boots” only you should not wear them for the first time in order to avoid the bulbs that may spoil your adventures.

And finally, let’s talk about food and various materials: food and hydration represent our first survival, source of energy and strength in the mountains. The best is to focus on a diet mainly based on slow sugars before leaving (rice, legs, wholemeal bread …) and then tackle the fast sugars (chocolate, dried fruit,…) during the hike. Hydration must be regular and sufficient enough. You have to drink without thirst, for example every half hour but in small quantities. And for various equipment, we would need a GPS that serves as a guide or a topos, a camera of course, a walking sticks (strongly advised for older people), a pocket hydration bag (not necessarily but always advised) a bottle, a protective case (to protect our electronic equipment from water), a watch, one or a few drinking water supplies, and not to forget, a medicine box and survival equipment, such as matches. So you now have a sense of everything you need to do and wear for your first or next mountain hike, just choose the date!


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