Before you go out on a hike, familiarize yourself with the area and the lay of the land. Be sure to dress for the weather. Read about what others have done in the way of hiking. Invest in a topographical map for the area of interest. Be sure to take along some water and something to nibble on. Even a good flashlight can come in handy if your hike is longer than planned. You can find a lot of useful material online that will help keep you from having search and rescue sent out to find you. The trail map above is just one of many. If you do get lost, stay put and call for help! Its a safety issue at that point and may prevent you from getting into some real trouble that'll give the search and rescue people a nightmare! Don't let your ego get you into trouble! Good luck, and stay safe! - V
Note: For those challenged and unable to find their way around the landscape easily, invest in a compass, so that you map can be pointed to the north. Some of us can find our way by the position of the sun during the day and the moon and stars at night. Easily memorizing the landscape is a great help.
If you want to avoid bears, wild cats (such as lynx, bobcats and cougars) and coyotes, avoid hiking when the animals they prey upon are around (at night and in the early morning). True, you won't see deer or rabbits but you won't have a black bear breathing down your neck. If such things are not a concern to you, then carry on! Regardless, be aware of your surroundings!!! - V