MN Nature in St Paul, Minnesota, wants you to enjoy hiking all year round, including during hunting seasons. November is deer hunting season and the time when most activity happens, especially this year Nov 3-13.
How to stay safe in 3 steps you can remember:
1. Be Aware
2. Be Seen
3. Be Heard
Know where hunters are, call ahead before planning your hike. When planning your hike, be sure to call the owner of the land (state park, county park, etc.) during open hours and ask them if the park will be open on the day you plan to hike. Ask for a map of safe places to hike, or particular areas to avoid. Probably best to stay on the trails at this time of year.
Wear blaze orange. Have your dog wear it, too. This helps hunters clearly see you from a good distance away and even in bad weather.
Make noise–whistle, talk, raise your voice if/when you hear a shot. Generally, make your presence known. Don’t quietly walk through the woods in hopes of seeing wildlife during hunting season. Your priority is to be seen and heard by hunters, who may be over the next ridge–if they hear you, they may not take a shot at a deer that would run your direction.
Remember, do not hike on land you don’t have permission to hike on. This is true always, but especially important during hunting seasons. Even state parks and national parks have permitted hunt periods, so always gain permission to hike during November. It’s just a general precautionary step to take.
Photo: IceAge Trail