Six Tips for Trail Safety This Fall

Hunting season is upon us in the Upper Valley. In Vermont the regular deer season begins on November 14th and runs until November 29th. It is also Black Bear Season until November 22nd. All Vermont hunting seasons can be found here. 

In New Hampshire, it is already deer and turkey season for both archery and rifles as well as pheasant season. All in all some kind of hunting is permitted in New Hampshire though the end of the year. All New Hampshire hunting seasons can be found here. 

Safety Tips for Being Outside During Hunting Season

Each fall, hikers and other recreationalists spending time in the woods need to take safety into account while they enjoy the outdoors. The following tips will help keep you safe outside!

  1. Know Your Seasons: You’ve already completed this step! By reading this blog post and figuring out when the hunting seasons are in your state you know when you need to be on the lookout for hunters.
  2. Wear Blaze Orange: Get yourself an orange vest, hat, or bandana and make sure to wear it when you hit the trails. If you don’t have blaze orange try a different bright color like red or yellow. Avoid wearing green, brown, black, or camouflages. It’s also a good idea to get an orange vest or other orange item for each of your pets as well.
  3. Keep Your Dogs On Leash: Dogs are much more likely to be accidentally shot than people. Keeping your dogs on a leash with you is an easy and effective way to ensure their safety. It is also polite to the hunters who don’t want dogs chasing away their prey.
  4. Hike Where There Are No Hunters: If you’re uncomfortable hiking where hunters may be hunting, try a hike where hunters are not allowed. (Note: All UVLT Conservation Areas allow for deer hunting when in season so please be aware on any of our trails).
  5. Make Some Noise: Making noise will alert hunters to your presence on the trail. My personal favorite is to sing incessant showtunes but if that’s not your style you could wear a bear bell, or hike with a friend to chat with.
  6. Avoid Times of Day That Hunters Like: Deer are most active at dawn and dusk and so are hunters. If possible, go for a hike mid-day. Not only are hunters less likely to be out in the woods, but you will be more easily seen during brighter parts of the day. You may also find fewer hunters in the woods during the work week as compared to the weekend.