Local rescue patrol offers public hiking safety tips


Summer is fast approaching and with the warmer temperatures, many will enjoy hiking the Borderland’s numerous trails. 

But after one hiker was injured and lost for several days in the Guadalupe Mountains National Park in April, authorities want to remind you how to hike with safety in mind.

The Texas Rescue Patrol, a non-profit first-responder organization, was on the scene to help find that hiker.

“Our staff worked really hard to try and locate him hiking up the trail which I believe is about four miles each way which is really difficult terrain,” Chief Jamil Moutran said.

Moutran said hiker rescue calls are common in the warmer months leading into summer. 

“Ultimately the search was successful, rescuers on the scene were able to locate the hiker and thankfully he was in stable condition.”

Lieutenant Elias Adair offers the public some safety tips for their summer hikes:

  • Stay hydrated, always carry extra water
  • Wear bright colors, avoid camouflage
  • Wear shoes with grip and a proper fit
  • Wear clothing that covers most skin to avoid sunburn 
  • Hike with another person or in a group 
  • Tell someone where you will be hiking and when you expect to be back
  • Have a flashlight with fully charged batteries even in daylight
  • Carry your cell phone with a full charge
  • Use GPS or apps on your phone to stay on trailheads
  • Don’t stray from designated trails

“That was also a big issue we had last time, a hiker actually left about two miles from the trail so it’s a very far distance if you can stay as close as you possibly can to the trail,” Adair said.

The Texas Rescue Patrol explains the many reasons hikers need rescuing are due to heatstroke, injury, or lack of preparation.

“You have to pack right, so we talked about water but you also want to bring a fully charged cell phone with you, even if you don’t have service when you call 911 it uses any available service providers,” Adair said.

Lt. Adair urges you to call park rangers or 911 if you ever encounter an emergency during a hike.

The Texas Rescue Patrol is a division of Texas Recreational Safety & Land Management. For more information click here.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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