It’s almost summertime, and many are gearing up to go hiking in the Canadian Rockies in Alberta! While Alberta is home to many of the world’s most breathtaking hiking trails and sceneries, it’s also important to remember that it is a Bear country. Every time you embark on a hiking trip or tour, there is a chance of bear encounters. While bears are naturally afraid of humans, they’ve become more audacious in our presence, so hikers are recommended to take a bear awareness course. So put on your hiking boots, and bring your trekking poles and bear sprays as Rocky Mountain Cycle Tours takes you through our summer hiking and bear awareness tips!

Summer Hiking Tips

It’s getting hotter and hotter each year, so you want to ensure you’re prepared, especially on a hiking tour. A few things to keep in mind are:
  • Bring lots of water – Expect your body to lose at least a litre of water every hour; double that during hot weather.
  • Rest – Get plenty of rest the night before a hike. Also, don’t forget to give your muscles a break and cool down when you’re on the trail.
  • Prepare for the weather – Check how it can affect your hiking tour and trail that day. Dress right, and steer clear of possible warnings like wildfire sites.
  • Start early – Start your hike early to reduce your risk of heat stroke.
Lastly, you’ll want to know about animals like bears, cougars, bobcats, etc. Read on for more information and how a bear awareness course can help with your preparation.

Be Aware of Your Surroundings

When picking a hiking trail or tour, you’ll want to gather as much info as possible on the area and if you need to be aware of anything. This can be anything from closed pathways, hazardous areas or dangerous wildlife spotting. Avoid hiking alone, as bears aren’t expected to linger around trails with lots of noise. It’s not enough to rely on bells to alert them of your presence. Running water, dense vegetation and headwinds increase your chances of surprising a bear. Also, avoid areas where you smell something dead or where birds can be found circling overhead, as it may be a bear’s food source.

Bear Awareness Course

If you want to ensure your hiking tour is as safe as possible, we recommend taking a bear awareness course. Upon completing this course, you’ll better understand the nature of bears. You’ll go through objectives from how to prevent encounters, handling bear spray to response techniques in case of encounters on the field.

Hiking Tours

Once you have taken the course and feel comfortable hiking the vast Canadian Rockies, Rocky Mountain Cycle Tours will be here! We offer hiking tour packages exploring Banff, Yoho, Jasper, Kootenay National parks and more. Contact us to learn more, stay safe, and we wish you plenty of summer hiking adventures!
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