It's the most gorgeous time of the year to get out and hike the Hudson Valley.

The leaves are finally seeing some color change and the views are absolutely breathtaking. With that being said, there have been several stories this month of hikers finding themselves in scary and dangerous situations.

Some of these reports have included lost and injured hikers. To help hikers avoid dangerous situations like this the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation put together a few helpful lists with their HIKE SMART NY program.

They break down the 10 Hiking Essentials you'll need the next time you hit the trails in and around the mid-Hudson Valley region. The essentials include:

  1. Navigation
  2. Insulation/Rain Gear
  3. Light
  4. First Aid Supplies
  5. Emergency Kit
  6. Fire
  7. Nutrition
  8. Water
  9. Sun & Insect Protection
  10. Emergency Shelter

The DEC also suggest you plan out your trip to the trails by visiting their website and getting updates on trail conditions. Also, keeping your family and friends up to date with your hiking plans is always a nice added safety measure to take.

Another safety measure to keep in mind, knowing your own skill set. The DEC writes "Be realistic about your skill level." They added "Don't overestimate your abilities" adding "Choose trails within your or your group's ability."

If you're heading out to the trails in the next few months, make sure to check out the DEC hiking essentials list especially for the winter months.

You can get a detailed look at hiking trail conditions and what you should pack in for your next hike on the HIKE SMART NY page on the DEC website.

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