It’s Scary Out There

The number 1 concern for most woman who want to go backpacking alone is: What if?

What if a Bear comes into camp?

What if some guy comes into camp?

What if I get lost?

What do I do at night?

Should I carry a weapon?

What if I see a Zombie?

All these are very valid concerns. So let’s address some of these. Atlanta Female Outdoor Classes

What if a Bear comes into camp? Bears have no clue whether are Male or Female. They don’t care. What they do care about is your food. If you want to completely be free of whether are Bear or any wild animal comes into your camp, then you 100% practice what you have been (hopefully) taught. HANG YOUR FOOD AWAY FROM CAMP. DON’T HAVE FOOD IN YOUR TENT (or anything with a fragrance smell) and LEAVE NO TRACE.

*tip  Bear spray is important to carry out West and in other areas where Bear might challenge you. In most cases, you DO NOT HAVE TO CARRY BEAR SPRAY.

What if some guy comes into camp?  Use your instincts! If you are hiking on a National Trail like the Appalachian Trail or the Pacific Crest Trail, the odds are that other people are hiking it also.  The majority of issues will be campsites that are close to parking areas or trail heads. You should adopt general best practices for being aware of your surroundings and strangers, but fear of violence should not keep you from the trail. The incidences of violence can be counted on two hands, and over a 40 years period that number of crimes is sparse relative to the frequency of murders and murder rate per capita in US metropolitans. NEVER has violence occurred on trails by other backpackers.  If the person looks “local” or wonders in late at night and you are near a parking area, then caution and common sense apply.

What if I get lost?  Don’t panic!  If you have filled out a Trip Plan, and have let people know what time you will be back, you are already in good shape. The best defense is use your head and try your best to retrace your steps. But the main thing is this: Don’t get off the marked trail. If you feel that you are lost, then use your emergency whistle. Again, Plan and Prepare.

What do I do at night? Go to bed! You are going to hear sounds. It’s nature. Nature makes sounds. Sounds are ok.

Should I carry a weapon?  Unless you are highly proficiant in either a knife fight with a Bear, or have a gun permit, we suggest you don’t need one.

What if I see a Zombie? You have bigger problems than being afraid of the outdoors.

You are going out into the wilderness to experience the beauty that she offers. But yes, there are dangerous things out there. But it can’t be anymore dangerous that getting in your car and driving on an expressway or taking public transportation.  People tend to fear the unknown. The best way to handle your fear of hiking alone is the backcountry is…get to know it.

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