The weather in Arizona is ideal for hiking and exploring right now but, isn’t always 70° and sunny. Winter and early spring are the perfect conditions for all day hiking if you choose. But, there is another side to Arizona. It gets hot, very hot here.
Arizona Gets Hot
In case you didn’t know. During the summer months temperatures can reach 115°-120° Fahrenheit. The crazy thing is people still go out and hike during these times. I actually am one of them. What can I say… I love hiking and being outside.
I wanted to share some tips and precautions to take when hiking in the Arizona heat to protect yourself from heat exhaustion and dehydration. Sadly, it is not uncommon to hear on the news of a hiker going out unprepared in the heat and getting sick and lost.
Arizona Hiking Essentials
Hydration Packs: water, water and more water.
Drink more water then you need while you are on the trails. Always bring more water than you think you will need because the heat will make you tired and you don’t want to allow yourself get dehydrated which can cause you become light-headed and increase your risk of falling.
2. High-Energy Nutrition
Bring snacks and more snacks. My go to are bananas, almonds, different trail mix type of packs are great because they contain various sugars and high protein nuts that convert to great energy sources quickly. Try to avoid things that are going to make you feel sluggish because you need all the energy and electrolytes you can get.
3. Sun Protection
Many Arizona trails around the valley do not have great shaded areas. It is important to bring hats, sunglasses anything to try and keep the sun from hitting you directly to help keep you cool if all possible. Put on the sunscreen and be sure to wear light weight breathable material so that you can protect your skin but, are sweating more due to the clothing choices.
I stumbled upon this Umbrella which I never really thought about using this in the Arizona summer. I feel silly now because it can provide a great solution when hiking in the desert. It is very lightweight and can be placed right into your pack to keep your hands free.
Liteflex Hiking (Chrome) Umbrella by Gossamer Gear
With the Arizona heat pounding down on you it can get very easy to get turned around. Always review your hiking path in advance and have a clear general idea of where you are going to ensure that you wont be out there longer then expected. When hiking in Arizona especially during the summer months it is important to go as early as possible to ensure you aren’t out there too late. It can reach 100-110 degrees before noon rather quickly. There are times as well when you might want to try a evening hike as the sun is going down which is another reason to make sure that you know where you are going before it gets too dark.
I hope you all found this information help as you embark on your hiking adventures. Be safe and prepared out there. Huge thanks to Gossamer Gear for making this all happen!