To fully bullet-proof yourself:

Don't go alone.

I'm going to step out on a limb here and say that I believe there is a point where you can go alone and be just fine. I've done day hikes and bushwhacks practically all my life, and over the past few years I've been doing more and more solo trips.

That said, I never take any real unnecessary risks out there, I don't do wet crossings when there's even a slight chance of getting swept away, or climb where it's dangerous, and I make sure the weather is going to be perfect during the time I expect to be out.

I go slow, and don't wear myself out, and I take the time to stop, rest, rehydrate, and eat. My hikes are modest in terms of miles and difficulty, in as much as a bushwhack can be here in the Ozarks. It's not that difficult to climb a mountain if you're not in a hurry.

I really can't imagine never going alone.


"You want to go where?"