Welcome to the Trails 101 Video Series. The four short videos below cover all the information you need to know before you go on your next hike. Whether this is your first time on trails or your 50th, there are guidelines every trail user should follow to keep yourself, and our environment safe. In these videos, we will discuss some of the principles of Leave No Trace including how to plan and prepare for a hike, trail etiquette, and proper disposal of waste. Armed with the information from this video series, you and your family will be ready to explore nature responsibly! For more information about Leave No Trace, please visit: https://lnt.org/
What to Know Before You Go:
Join us on the trail as we explain the types of trails you can find around Connecticut, the activities you can do on trails, and how to find the perfect trail for you and your family! This video provides information on what you should know before you hit the trail and how to find the resources you need for a safe and successful outing.
Links mentioned in the video:
- All trails: www.alltrails.com
- Connecticut Forest and Parks Association: https://www.ctwoodlands.org/
- Department of Energy and Environmental Protection State, Parks and Forests Maps: https://portal.ct.gov/DEEP/State-Parks/Connecticut-State-Parks-and-Forests
- CT Trail day: https://www.ctwoodlands.org/ct-trails-weekend
- Walktober: https://thelastgreenvalley.org/explore-the-last-green-valley/walktober/
What to Wear and Bring with You:
In this video, we provide an overview of what you should take with you on your next hike. We discuss recommendations for water intake during a hike as well as guidelines for clothes and footwear based on weather and trail conditions. We show you how to layer properly to stay warm when hiking in the cold. Additionally, this video provides a complete list of items to pack to ensure success on the trail. Finally, we share tips and tricks on how to plan for weather and how to stay safe if bad weather does roll in. Being prepared is the best way to ensure an enjoyable time out in nature.
Links mentioned in the video:
- Weather: https://www.wunderground.com/
Reading Trail Blazes and Handling Emergencies:
This video demonstrates how to read trail markers or “blazes” while on the trail. This information will help you to avoid getting lost, and to stay on the right trails during your hike. We discuss what different trail markers look like for different trail activities such as skiing and horseback riding. Finally, we talk about what to do if you do in case of an emergency on the trail or if you get lost while hiking.
Learn about trail etiquette before embarking on your next adventure. Trail etiquette is important because, by following a few simple guidelines, we can enjoy our own time in nature while being respectful to other trail users and the environment. In this video, we discuss social distancing guidelines for hiking, when to yield to other trail users, and what to do when you meet a horse on a trail. Additionally, we talk about how to stay safe around wildlife. Finally, we outline Leave No Trace guidelines.
These videos were made possible by a generous gift from the David and Nancy Bull Extension Innovation Fund to the UConn PATHS Team - People Active on Trails for Health and Sustainability. PATHS is an interdisciplinary team of University of Connecticut extension educators, faculty, and staff committed to understanding and promoting the benefits of trails and natural resources for health and communities, and implementing a social ecological approach to health education. Our team works in a wide variety of departments and disciplines including public health, health education, nutrition, community development, and landscape architecture.
Written and produced October 2020 by Jenifer Nadeau, Michael Puglisi, Umekia Taylor, Stacey Stearns, Dianisi Torres, Laura Brown, Mike Zaritheny, with review and special assistance from Dea Ziso, Marissa Dibella, Laurie Giannotti, Claire Cain, Kristen Bellantuono, Kim Bradley, and Amy Hernandez.