Forest Safety

Please have a safe and fun visit to our National Forest. Take a few minutes to review the guidelines below. Make sure everyone in your group is familiar with these safety tips.

Hiking Tips

Footwear: Before starting on even a casual hike, take an inventory of your equipment. Have the proper footwear. Blisters and sore legs will greatly distract from your adventure in the Forest.

Water: The Big Bear Valley is in many places a high desert. Take plenty of fluids since there is very little access to drinking water on the trails. The only water that’s safe to drink at recreation sites is from developed systems. Open water is too easily contaminated to be considered potable. Water from springs, lakes, ponds, and streams should be treated prior to drinking. Even clear water should be boiled at least 15 minutes before drinking.

Sun: At our high altitudes the air has very little ozone to protect you from the harmful rays of the sun. A hat is imperative as is sun-block, particularly for those who are fair-skinned.

Survival Kit: Many experienced trekkers carry a small survival kit with them with these items:

  • windbreaker
  • small first aid kit
  • metal mirror
  • police whistle
  • matches
  • pocket flashlight
  • high-energy snacks
  • sheet of plastic or a thermal blanket in case the weather changes or it becomes necessary to spend the night in the woods.

Timing: Always let a responsible friend know where you’re going and when you expect to be back. Also, it is never wise to hike alone. Find out when the sun sets and allow yourself plenty of time to return before dark.

Wildlife: And if you meet a bear? Be bear wise!

Be Bear Wise!

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