As the temperature rises, it’s a great time to get outside and enjoy one of Canada’s national or provincial parks. From coastlines to mountains to rainforest and prairies, Canada has the biggest backyard to explore.

Whether you’re out for a leisurely hike along park trails or a strenuous multi-day trek, ensure your trip into the great outdoors is a safe one:

  • Check weather before you leave, and be prepared for it to change.
  • Carry extra food and clothing, in case you need to stay out longer than you had anticipated.
  • Be bear and cougar aware. Know what to do if you meet one. Bears and cougars aren’t just in the backcountry; many parks and cities encroach on their habitat.
  • Keep to the trails. If you get lost, you have a better chance at being found on the trail than off.
  • Slow your pace and announce your presence/intentions when approaching other trail users.
  • Share the trail. Downhill hikers should yield to uphill hikers.

10 Trip Essentials

1. Flashlight, spare batteries and bulb.
2. Fire-making kit (waterproof matches/lighter, fire starter or candle).
3. Signalling device, such as a whistle or mirror in case you get lost.
4. Extra food and water (1 litre of water per person).
5. Extra clothing (e.g., rain and wind gear, a toque).
6. Navigation and communication aids (maps, compass, cellular/satellite phone).
7. First-aid kit.
8. Emergency shelter (e.g., a tarp or large garbage bag – preferably bright so that it can be used as a signalling device).
9. Pocket knife.
10. Sun protection (glasses, sunscreen, hat).


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