Hikers, Snowshoers, and Cross-Country Skiers “Oh My”!

DSC_9256-XL

Jill, Day Hiking Ambassador

Winter creates a special outdoor playground for nature and recreational enthusiasts. It’s the time of year where you get to bundle up and relive the glorious feeling of being a kid experiencing a “snowday” where school is canceled and all you have to do is play.

Like any playground in the world their are rules and etiquette to ensure everyone gets to stay safe and have fun. If you are new to the world of winter recreation here is the lay of the land in regards to how it all works. These guidelines will help you make the most of your time out in the snow.

Hikers:

  • As a hiker, if the snow on your desired trail is unpacked and deeper than 8 inches please suit up with a form of flotation such as snowshoes or cross-country skis.
  • If you are out hiking without gear and are postholing the trail please reconsider going any further without flotation gear. When you begin to create postholes you are putting yourself and future adventures at risk of injuries and sinking knee or waist deep in snow. It’s important to keep the trail safe for all explorers.
  • If the trail is marked snowshoes and cross-country skis required please re-frame from using the trail if you do not have the proper equipment.

Snowshoers

  • When out snowshoeing on the trail remember to yield to the snowshoer coming uphill.
  • When sharing a trail with cross-country skiers walk outside or parallel of established ski tracks. This will allow both snow enthusiasts to enjoy the open space with optimal conditions.

Cross-Country Skiers

  • When preparing to ski down a hill or around a blind corner on a shared trail make sure that you call out before you begin to ensure your way is clear and to allow others at the bottom of the hill time to yield.
  • On steep sections please side-step down wearing your skis or take a detour around.
  • Yield to faster skiers on the trail.

EVERYONE:

  • Share the trail and greet others when passing by. You are sharing the love of the snowy outdoors together so smile!
  • Enjoy the quiet. The stillness and quiet offered by snowscapes in the winter is a big draw for winter adventurers.
  • When you are taking a break please step to the side of the trail to allow others to pass by with ease.
  • Whether you are a hiker, snowshoer, or cross-country skier remember to “Leave No Trace”. Everything you pack-out needs to be packed back in. Let’s keep our winter wonderland beautiful by leaving only our tracks on the trails.

DSC_9225-L