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   我有義務要提醒每一个人注意你自身的安全。你的安全是我們出遊的最高原則, 沒有任何事情可以超越,謝謝。
                                              AND FREQUENTLY ASKED  QUESTIONS                                          
                       OUR HIKES ARE ON MOST SATURDAYS---JOIN US FOR A   'WALK ON THE WILDSIDE'!!!                                                      EMAIL THE HIKE COORDINATOR AT:  hikemasters2020@gmail.com   SCROLL DOWN!!   




                              HIKEMASTERS  'THE DOZEN ESSENTIALS'

For our newer members, and as a reminder for our regulars, here are Hikemasters 'The Dozen Essentials'

1.  Always tell someone where you are going and around what time you will return.
2.  Tell someone else where you are going and around what time you will return.  The first person you told  may forget.....
3.  Pack water.  Though some food is important too, you cannot survive very long without water.
4.  Carry a whistle.  This is the ultimate survival gadget;  you can't rely on your cellphone as most places in the mountains it probably won't work.
5.  Wear a hat.  This will keep you cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter.
6.  Stay on the trails.  Cutting switchbacks and/or taking shortcuts could result in a fall and/or injury and also contributes to trail erosion.
7.  Pack a bandana.  This is a multi-use 'tool'.  You can dip it into water and then wrap it around your nect to keep cool;  you can cover up your head with one should you forget your hat;  A bandana can also be used as a makeshift bandage or sling in the event of an injury.  In an emergency you can also filter creek or river water through it before drinking.
8.  Pack a 'Swiss Knife'.  This is also indispensable in many outdoor situations.
9.  Keep a light jacket in your car--the mountains make their own weather;  once you arrive at the trailhead you can decide whether or not to wear it or bring it along on the hike.
10.  Pack some toilet paper.  You could use leaves in an emergency, but do you really want to do that???
11.  Stay where you are if you ever think you may be lost.  Unless you can recognize certain trail landmarks, it is always, always safer to STAY PUT---blow your whistle every now and then and don't panic.  If you have remained on the trail while hiking another hiker should be coming along soon. 
12.  Pack a small 'First Aid Kit' either in your backpack or car, including sun screen should you need it on a sunny day. 

                                    FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

WHAT DO I BRING?  Whether it is Spring, Summer, Fall or Winter, always pack a jacket!  The mountains make their own weather.  Once you arrive @ the trailhead you can decide whether or not to wear it.  Wear comfortable shoes--hiking boots are not necessarily essential, but may provide the additional traction needed should you encounter slippery or rocky terrain.  Pack water, at least a 24oz per one-way mile, wear a hat and bring a whistle & some toilet paper.

WHAT DO THE DIFFERENT LEVELS MEAN?  Levels 1-2 are good for beginners, children and also seniors.  Levels 3-4 are more challenging, generally steeper and/or longer.  Level 5 is 'The Ultimate Challenge'.  Overall, the main difference between the levels is a matter of elevation gain.

IS IT DANGEROUS?  I ALWAYS HEAR ABOUT HIKERS GETTING RESCUED SOMEWHERE.  We stay on the trails and we discourage cutting switchbacks and/or taking shortcuts.  Our emphasis is on safety---each of our members receives a whistle and must also sign a liability release waiver which also enumerates the risks inherent in hiking.  The hikers that are rescued are usually those that have wandered away off the trail and have not followed established safety protocols.

ARE THERE SNAKES AND BEARS?  Yes.  The ones you might see and those you cannot see.  Stay vigilant and remain aware on the trails.  Remember, we are traveling through their home environment.

WHAT ABOUT RESTROOMS?  (a typical woman's question!)  Some trailheads have some restroom facilities, either an outhouse or regular restroom, but most do not.  But there are plenty of trees and bushes to choose from.  Pack some toilet paper.

WILL MY CELL PHONE WORK UP THERE?  Probably not.  Sometimes there are certain areas along a trail where it might suddenly work, but from our experience, don't count on it.

CAN I BRING A DOG?  Yes.  In a National Forest such as Angeles National Forest you can bring one onto the trails  (unlike a National Park where they are generally prohibited from going on the trails.  However, you have to keep them on a leash.

CAN I GO CAMPING?  Definitely.  As a matter of fact, unless posted otherwise, you can set up a tent, without making fire, anywhere you want, as long as it is not a road hazard.  This is unlike a National Park where you would only be allowed to camp in established campgrounds.

DO I HAVE TO COMPLETE A HIKE?  Absolutely not.  Most of our hikes return the same way we started, so you can always find a nice, personal rest spot and stop there.  Then, either return the way you came, or wait for the group to return and go with them.  We have a number of trail guides that you can let know your intentions.

WHAT ABOUT MOUNTAIN LIONS?  They are there as well.  But because of their normal habits such as being active at night and having a very large home/hunting range, chances are you will never encounter one.  In any case, it is always better to hike with someone else or with a group.

WHAT ABOUT IF I GET LOST?  If you think you are really lost, stay put!  Blow your whistle and call out every few minutes.  Look for familiar landmarks you may have noticed before you felt you were lost.  If you have remained on the trail, someone else, or another group member, should be around shortly.  Don't begin wandering around away from the trail as this is how hikers REALLY get lost.  Wandering around can cost you up to $6000. for a helicopter rescue.

CAN I BRING RADIOS/MUSIC ON THE HIKES??   You are welcome to listen to your favorite tunes on the hikes as long as it does not in any way infringe upon other hikers enjoyment of the wilderness experience, which in many instances includes the natural surrounding sounds such as waters flowing and birds singing.  Best to bring some ear-plugs or head phones!!

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