Hiking can be a lot of fun at Hagerman Fossil Beds; however, you are a long way from medical assistance, so please plan ahead. Wear sturdy shoes; carry water and a flashlight. Remember the sun and heat...snakes and scorpions...know your hiking limitations...and have a safe, good time.
Safety first, last, and always!!!
The Essentials for Hiking
Bring your cell phone: Though there are some areas in the park where cell phones do not work well, most phones today have location devices that emergency services can activate to locate you. Just don't rely exclusively on your phone or active maps on your phone. Actual printed maps are helpful and can reassure you about trail lengths and locations.
Food and Water: Carry high-energy snacks and plenty of water. Potable water is available from the Visitor Center so make sure to fill your water bottle even on a short day hike.
Clothing: Weather can change dramatically here. Dress appropriately. Consider a long sleeve shirt to lessen your sun exposure. Jeans rather than shorts and sturdy walking shoes or hiking boot are best for extended hikes where biting insects and other surprises may be encountered.
Sun Protection: Hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen are the basics, but consider your own comfort and needs.
First Aid: A basic first aid kit is welcome on any hike. Bandages or moleskin for small cuts and scrapes, and blisters, should be a standard feature. Make sure to include any special medications you take regularly or need to have in an emergency (like an epi pen for those allergic to bees, for example).
Signal: Carry both an audible and visual signal, such as a whistle and a metal mirror. A pocket knife may have many uses, including as a signal mirror.
Trail Safety: Please stay on designated trails. The ground is unstable in some areas and the plants and animals are fragile.
The Most Important Essential:
This is your call. Think about what might be important to you. For some, it might be strong insect repellent, for others, your camera. Everyone should try to take along a lot of common sense!
Last updated: June 18, 2017