First Time Hiker Tips 101 (for Black Girls!)

Hey Girl Hey!

Yes I did take my Black Girl tail out hiking on an almost 10 mile hike.  

Yes I did make my way out for some fun afterwards. 

Yes I have been limping ever since.  

I am about to school you on some "be a better hiker" information, so that the first time that you decide to power hike that you have some ammunition to stay energized and at peace:

1. Take two bottles of water. Yes two.  You might not have a water fountain or fill up station and you do not want to have 4 miles to walk without hydration.

2. Take a good friend with you.  I didn't but child, after that walk me and Diane (my new home girl) are good friends.

She is my "Hiking Sands" because I DID actually sit down and cry for a few moments when we were lost and I couldn't breathe at the elevation that we were at.  

She had my back, told me to get my a** up and made sure that I had some water.

3. Make sure that you have a snack.  I was rushing trying to meet up with the hiking group on time and to take a few pictures for an auto review, so I didn't grab a bite to eat.  

I had NO nourishment before or during the hike.  BIG MISTAKE.

You DID read that it was an almost 10 mile hike, right?

I mean I pledged, but damn. I’m 36 now.

4. Take a good look at the map LONG before you decide to get your tail out on a mountain with people that you don't really know.  

Review rule number 2. And keep said map with you.  It's the ONLY way that you might get out!

5. Know your limits.  While I am all for pushing a body to the limits-realize that you do have them.  If you are not accustomed to walking more than 5 miles at a time on a treadmill, walking 10 miles with several miles uphill (basically a mountain) might not be the hike for you!

6. Stop and smell the roses.  Although my hike turned out to be the hike from hell, it started out awesomely!  I have beautiful pictures.  I opened up my lungs nice and early and I saw parts of the Oakland Bay Area that I had not seen before.  

I think that challenging your body and seeing new things is what hiking is all about. The first 5 miles for me was awesome! I was d@mn near skipping, then I hit a wall. If I had had a snack I may not have been as tired!

7. It's okay to stop.  It's okay to stop and breathe...and not just to take pictures but to also catch your breath.  Let me repeat "working out at the gym is NOT the same as hiking."

8. Do not wear make-up.  I kinda thought that this was a no brainer. I don't wear makeup when I jog or hit the gym (I don't really believe in foundation anyway) so the thought of putting on makeup and then getting out into the dirty and gritty outdoors sounds crazy to me!...but I do realize that some people wear makeup everywhere.  I encourage you to protect your skin because dirt, sweat and makeup don't mix.  

Wear a good moisturizing SPF and save your skin.

By the skin was glowing after that walk.  If I had been wearing makeup, the sweat and toxins would not have been able to get out.  Plus what if I had started sweating makeup? And what if my crush Colin Kaepernick was there? A mess.

9. Bring a hair tie.  If you don't wear your hair tied back you might start on that walk.  If you DO wear a hair tie, you will not want to have hair everywhere if your hair tie pops! Have some back up!

10. Have good shoes.  You do not want to wear low top shoes, they should be high tops and even better if you have boots.  This is because dirt and rocks will get into your shoes.  And this can make for a painful walk.  Trust me, I know this too.

Please Note: Have a massage waiting for you when you get home. And let him be fine. *smile* 


If you want to join the hiking group that I walked with (they are awesome the 510 Hikers) check them out on Facebook here!  If you don't live in the San Francisco Bay Area check your local meetup groups, but above all else remember to be safe!

So these tips are NOT just for Black Girls, but hey girl hey....

Happy Hiking!