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-------------------------Seasonal Reminder: Dress for the weather, not the car.
You can't always avoid the emergency room. But there are simple things to do that can make the best of a bad situation. Click here for tips to deal with trauma (e.g., broken bones, bleeding, etc), chest pain, abdominal pain, respiratory difficulty, and high fever. More info....
Firewood is always a challenge, especially during wet or wintery conditions. Click for a tip...
Always be prepared for survival situations.
Be Safe Out There. Driving to the trailhead, hiking along the trail or bushwhacking and camping in the backcountry need some special techniques and good equipment. Keep your tent, sleeping bag, backpack and other gear in tip top condition.
Safe drinking water is one of your main concerns. Water filters and water purifiers provide safe and convenient water wherever you are.
Be aware of hypothermia whenever in cool, moist windy situations.
So pack up your tent, sleeping bag, and camping gear on your pack frame and get out there.
Cougar Country Awareness
Sleek and graceful, cougars (Puma concolor) are solitary and secretive animals rarely seen in the wild. Also known as mountain lions or pumas, cougars are known for their strength, agility, and awesome ability to jump. Their exceptionally powerful legs enable them to leap 30 feet from a standstill, or to jump 15 feet straight up a cliff wall.
Precautions for Hikers and Campers
While recreating in a cougar’s territory, you can avoid close encounters by taking the following precautions:
While camping in cougar habitat, you should:
1. Keep a clean camp. Reduce odors that might attract mammals such as raccoons, which in turn could attract cougars. Store meat, other foods, pet food, and garbage in double plastic bags.
2. Keep small children close to the group, preferably in plain sight from camp
If you encounter a cougar:
Cougars make their living by not being seen. In areas disturbed by humans, these cats are most active during twilight and early morning hours. (In dim light, cougars see up to six times better than humans.) However, cougars can be active at dawn or dusk if prey is active at that time.
Relatively few people will ever catch a glimpse of a cougar much less confront one. If you come face to face with a cougar, your actions can either help or hinder a quick retreat by the animal.
Here are some things to remember:
1. Stop, stand tall and don't run. Pick up small children. Don't run. A cougar's instinct is to chase.
2. Do not approach the animal, especially if it is near a kill or with kittens.
3. Try to appear larger than the cougar. Never take your eyes off the animal or turn your back. Do not crouch down or try to hide.
4. If the animal displays aggressive behavior, shout, wave your arms and throw rocks. The idea is to convince the cougar that you are not prey, but a potential danger.
5. If the cougar attacks, fight back aggressively and try to stay on your feet. Cougars have been driven away by people who have fought back.
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