What To Do If You Get Lost While Hiking

What To Do If You Get Lost While Hiking
What To Do If You Get Lost While Hiking

Hiking can be a great way to get outdoors and see some beautiful sceneries, but it can also be dangerous if you’re not careful. In this article, we’ll cover the basics of hiking safeties and what to do if you get lost while hiking. We’ll also provide some tips for navigating tricky terrain and for staying safe in case of an emergency.

Hiking safety precautions

If you’re planning to hike outdoors, make sure to take some precautions in case of a wilderness emergency. Here are a few things to keep in mind before your hike:

  1. Carry a map and compass. A map can help you find your way back if you get lost, and a compass can help you orient yourself while hiking.
  2. Leave a detailed itinerary. Include the names of all the landmarks you’ll be visiting, as well as the time of day and expected return time. This will help family or friends who are waiting for you if something goes wrong.
  3. Carry emergency supplies. Make sure you have food, water, first-aid supplies, and tools such as an emergency whistle or sheltering kit. If something happens and you need to spend the night outdoors, be prepared for inclement weather conditions.
  4. Stay together as a group. If possible, stick together during your hike so that if one person gets lost, they can easier find their way back to the group
  5. Know the emergency numbers for your region and carry them with you at all times. In case of an emergency, dial 911 or 112 immediately and provide as much information as possible about your location (e.g., which direction you’re headed, and what type of terrain you’re on).
  6. Before going hiking tell someone where you are going and when you plan to be back. This will help you if don’t come back after a particular time. The informed person may help you by informing the police or related department.
  7. Don’t go alone. Hiking in unfamiliar territory is more dangerous when there’s just one person present. Stick to well-marked trails and groups of people whenever possible.
  8. Make sure to keep track of your location and movement through a map and compass, carry a whistle and flashlight, and avoid isolated areas.

Psychological Steps After Being Lost

If you find yourself lost there are several psychological points you have to keep in your mind.

  1. Stay calm and assess the situation. If you’re lost in a remote area, it’s important to remain positive and avoid panicking. You may need to conserve energy until you find your way back. If you’ll panick, you’ll only make things worse. Take a deep breath and try to remember your route. If you can’t remember it, take a picture of the map with your phone so you have a reference point if necessary.
  2. Stay focused on your surroundings. Once you’ve calmed down, take stock of your surroundings. Are there any landmarks nearby that you can identify? Are there any trails or paths that look familiar? Follow these routes if they appear feasible.
  3. If you’re finding it difficult to stay oriented, try using a map and compass if you have them. Remember to take into account the terrain and weather conditions when planning your route.

Find a way with the help of Navigation tools

If you find yourself lost while hiking, there are a few navigation tools that can help you find your way back.

  1. A map is the most basic form of navigation. Maps show both the terrain and the pathways used by hikers. Make sure to get a map that covers your area of interest, as maps can vary in detail from region to region.
  2. Another form of navigation is using a GPS unit. A GPS unit can track your latitude and longitude coordinates and will provide a map with those coordinates overlaid. This type of unit is not always reliable in extreme conditions, so be prepared to rely on other forms of navigation if necessary.
  3. Finally, if you are unable to use any form of navigation or reach your destination, remember to keep an eye out for landmarks or features that you may recognize. Hikers often make good use of features like streams and mountains, which can help them orient themselves.
What To Do If You Get Lost While Hiking
What To Do If You Get Lost While Hiking

What To Do If You Get Lost While Hiking

  1. If you find yourself lost while hiking, the best thing to do is to follow the trails and markers that are set up for the area.
  2. Take inventory of your surroundings. Know what kind of terrain you are hiking on, what landmarks you can see, and how far away they are. If you’re hiking in unfamiliar terrain, it’s important to understand how the land slopes and twists. This will help you orient yourself and find your way back if you get lost.
  3. Many trails will have signage pointing the way back to the trailhead, so following these should get you back on track quickly. If you’re still lost, it’s also a good idea to check your GPS unit or map to see if you’re close to your destination.
  4. Time is a very precious thing and only enough time can save you from any hazard or danger. So keep track of the time by marking it on your map or compass.
  5. If you feel like you’re lost, take a few deep breaths and try to remember what landmarks you passed by on the way in. Always keep your eyes and ears open for any hints or clues that might lead you back to the group.
  6. If things start to go wrong, knowing how long it will take to get back home can help you decide whether or not to stay put or try and find a way out.

Hiking safety tips

If you find yourself lost while hiking, there are a few things you can do to stay safe.

  1. Make sure to follow the trail markers and avoid crossing any dangerous rivers or creeks.
  2. If you find yourself in a difficult situation, try to signal for help by making loud noises or flashing your light.
  3. Always take plenty of water with you and make sure to eat snacks and drinks to keep your energy up.
  4. Stay alert and aware of your surroundings. Be prepared to take quick action if necessary.
  5. Stay in a group when possible. Hiking in a group can help keep you safe and help you find your way back if you do get lost.
  6. Make sure to carry enough supplies with you so that you can survive for at least a day if necessary. This includes food, water, and shelter.
  7. If you feel like you are in danger, try to find a safe place to hunker down until the situation passes. If there is no safe place nearby, make noise so that others will be able to find you.
  8. Always take the time to rest and relax when you’re not in immediate danger – this will help you conserve energy and stay aware of your surroundings.
  9. The best way to find your way back is by following your footprints or markers left by other hikers. If all else fails, make a fire and wait for someone to find you.
  10. If you get lost while hiking, the best thing to do is to stay calm and assess your situation. If you are lost in a large area, make yourself as small a target as possible and try to stay in cover. You may also want to yell for help or carry a signaling device.
  11. If you are lost in a wooded area, remember to keep your eyes open for trails or markers. If you are lost on an isolated trail, it is important to know the location of water sources and backcountry campsites in case you need to seek shelter. If you become stranded, stay calm and conserve energy by keeping warm, dry, and quiet.

How To Survive Until You Are Found?

  • If you get lost while hiking, the first thing to do is to stay calm.
  • This can be difficult if you are panicking, but try to take a deep breath and focus on counting back from 100.
  • Once you have calmed down, start walking in a straight line.
  • If you can find any clear landmarks, try to head in that direction. If all else fails, sit down and wait for someone to find you.

Why do hikers get lost?

Hikers lost due to several reasons. Bad weather is the most prominent reason. Hikers get out of track due to heavy rains or thunderstorms. Another reason is got separated from the hiking group. So hikers become confused to find their way. And injury is also a reason for being lost while hiking.

What to do if you get lost in the mountains?

While getting lost in the mountains can be scary, it’s usually not fatal unless you get lost in an area that’s very dangerous or uninhabitable.

And even then, most people manage to find their way back home eventually. So don’t be too afraid to get lost – it just might take a little bit longer than usual to get back home.


We pray you never may be lost while hiking. If you are lost while hiking, it is important to stay calm and try to follow these tips.

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