Hikers should be ready for heat

Bring lots of water; know signs of heat exhaustion
Cascade Mountain is the most popular High Peak. The peak attracts hundreds of hikers on weekends.
Cascade Mountain is the most popular High Peak. The peak attracts hundreds of hikers on weekends.

ADIRONDACKS — The state Department of Environmental Conservation expects lots of people to head for the woods and mountains this week, both for the benefits of being outdoors and for an escape from the heat.

DEC wants hikers to do some planning, though. Forest rangers would really rather not have to rescue you — they’ll be busy enough.

In particular, DEC is reminding people to bring plenty of water, as temperatures in the Adirondacks are expected to be in the high 80s for the days leading up to July 4; the week also includes the Canada Day Canadian national holiday, which will bring many Canadians to the Adirondacks.

DEC is recommending people bring at least 2 liters of water with them — more if they’re planning a long hike. Starting a hike in the early morning to avoid the heat of the afternoon is recommended.

Hikers will also be at risk of heat exhaustion. Anyone whose skin is cool and moist, with goose bumps despite the heat, or who is feeling faintness, dizziness, fatigue or muscle cramps should take a break from activity, drink water and take any other available measures to cool down. People should not try to hike again until the symptoms are gone.

Those planning to climb a mountain are also advised that high heat will increase the risk of afternoon thunderstorms, so anyone on a summit who sees signs of a storm coming should get below the tree line as soon as possible.

Hikers are also reminded to use good etiquette in the woods: Practice “leave no trace” principles; don’t park at overcrowded trailheads; and watch for pedestrians when passing trailheads.

The DEC emergency dispatch number is 518-891-0235.


Categories: News, Schenectady County

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