Tips for Hikers as the Seasons Change

Jake Melder

Photo: Video by IdahoOnYourSide.com

Tips for Hikers as the Seasons Change

CREATED Oct. 3, 2013

Dogs are very important in the search of a missing Boise hiker, and the family of Dr. Jo Elliot-Blakeslee says Jo's own dogs found safe in her truck at Craters of the Moon are lifting spirits as they continue their search.

Canine teams from across the northwest are out in force, hoping to find Dr. Jo alive. Experts say these dogs are most effective when fewer people are around.

That means while the family is hoping for plenty of volunteers to help in the search, the volunteers must be organized. This ensures searchers don't risk contaminating possible clues.

Police say the terrain and a weather change caught Dr. Jo and her companion off guard. They are not the only ones to go missing so far this season.

As the weather changes, outdoor danger increases. When most of us take a trip into the woods, it is not a major excursion, but even short hikes can lead to disaster if you aren't prepared.

Experts at Craters of the Moon tell us Dr. Jo Elliot-Blakeslee and Amy Linkert did not have supplies for the extreme weather.

Packing properly for a hike might be common sense, but ignoring to do it could mean the difference between life and death - especially at this time of year.

"In this wet weather I had a lot of rocks falling on the roads and tree branches,” said Pete “Zimo” Zimowsky, the Outdoor Writer at the Idaho Statesman. “So you never know what's going to happen in the fall when you're traveling back roads."

If you're heading out to the back country, even for a short day trip, make sure you have some essentials with you. Bring plenty of water and food, a first aid kit, dress for the weather and of course bring your cell phone, even if you don't think you're going to have reception.

"Our concern usually with folks is that they have enough stuff to get by a day or two, should they twist an ankle or be unable to hike back out on their own,” said Traci Weaver of the National Park Service.

It's also important to inform people of your plans.

"My wife and I never go anywhere without telling relatives where we're going,” said Zimowsky. “We always say when we're going to be back and we stick to the schedule."

Try to stay in an area with high human traffic.

"You want to avoid getting off road or getting on some of those secondary roads where you might have to use four-wheel drive," Zimowsky advised.

For tips from the Idaho Statesman read these articles

Article 1
Article 2
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