Bears can be a threat when humans visit their territory. In reality, bear danger is very slight, but if you are prepared before entering their domain, you'll reduce the risk even more.
Like Indiana Jones, I'm afraid of snakes. They give me the creeps. Snakes aren't a common problem and will most likely not bite even when you do see one, but I'd just as soon never see one on the trail. Unfortunately, as the miles add up I know I'll run into more.
If you aren't careful and vigilant, smaller animals than bears will be a much larger problem. Birds, rodents, and raccoons are constantly prowling around searching for easy food - and humans are often an open pantry.
When you are outside, you are going to be bugged by bugs - that's why they call 'em bugs! Planning your hikes and using protective measures can greatly reduce the amount of trouble these little critters give you. Mosquitos, ticks, flies, gnats, and more are all out there, but don't let them stop you from enjoying the day.
Blisters are so common among hikers that they often don't even think of them as a medical condition. I've not gotten a hiking blister in the past seven years of hiking and backpacking. There's no magic, just preparing and keeping in touch with your body - and not trying to push yourself too hard.
Knees and joints take a real pounding when hiking up and down steep grades. When you get tired and take a tumble, they take even more punishment. Take care of your knees and legs to ensure a successful hike.
Many water-borne parasites, bacteria, and other creepy things can slip into your body and really cause a mess. It only takes one forgetful drink from a stream to ruin all the guidelines you've been careful to follow. Learn how to make water safe to drink.
On a long day-hike, you may not get off the trail before the weather turns ugly. Instead of racing a thunderhead back to the trailhead, understanding the risks and safety procedures for lightning might help you get off the mountain next time.
The sun means life, warmth, and good weather. We love being out in it and soaking it up. But, just like chocolate milkshakes, too much of a good thing isn't good for you. Life-long damage can be done by the sun, especially out in the wilds.
Hike On: Hiking Tips