The Dos and Don’ts of Bushwalking for Beginners

Uncategorized By Apr 02, 2023

Bushwalking is an outdoor activity involving hiking through the wilderness, and it is important to be aware of some dos and don’ts before embarking on the adventure. Bushwalking trails are typically marked out and designed for one’s safety, so hikers must stay on the trail and not create new ones. Furthermore, it is crucial to leave no trace, respect the wildlife, and stay hydrated by carrying enough water, food, sunscreen, insect repellent, a first-aid kit, and a map or GPS device before heading out. Lastly, one should hike with someone else and communicate with family, friends, or authorities of the intended route, departure, and arrival times.

Bushwalking is a popular outdoor activity that involves trekking through the wilderness or the bush. It can be a great way to experience nature, get some exercise, and challenge yourself. However, as a beginner, it’s important to be aware of some dos and don’ts that can help you make the most of your bushwalking experience. In this article, we’ll be discussing some of the key things to consider when you’re starting out with bushwalking.


1. Prepare well: Before heading out, you must prepare yourself well. This means you should check the weather forecast, plan your route, carry enough water, food, sunscreen, insect repellent, a first-aid kit, and a map or GPS device. Ensure your clothing is suited to the weather conditions, and you have sturdy footwear.

2. Stay on the trail: Bushwalking trails are typically marked out and designed for your safety. They provide the safest way to navigate through the wilderness while minimizing any impact on the surrounding environment. Always stay on the trail and avoid creating new ones.

3. Leave no trace: When bushwalking, it’s important to minimize your impact on the natural environment. This means leaving no rubbish, taking only photos, not disturbing wildlife or vegetation, and being mindful of where you relieve yourself.

4. Respect the wildlife: Bushwalking is an opportunity to see wildlife in their natural habitat, a memorable experience. But it’s important to remember that we are guests in their homes. Do not disturb, feed or touch the wildlife, and maintain a safe distance.

5. Pace yourself: As a beginner, it’s essential to pace yourself to avoid exhaustion or injury. Take frequent breaks to rest, hydrate or refuel.


1. Don’t hike alone: Bushwalking can be risky, even for experienced hikers, and it’s best to walk in pairs or groups. In case of an emergency, it’s easier to obtain help if someone is with you.

2. Don’t underestimate the weather: Weather conditions can be unpredictable, and sudden changes to temperature or precipitation can have a detrimental impact on your walk. You may experience dehydration, hypothermia or heat exhaustion. If the weather conditions are too severe, consider postponing your walk.

3. Don’t rely solely on technology: While navigation devices like maps and GPS are handy, they can malfunction or lose battery, leaving you lost or stranded. Learn how to use a map and compass as an integral part of your gear and navigation tools.

4. Don’t leave without letting someone know: It’s important to communicate with family, friends, or authorities of your intended route, departure, and arrival times.

5. Don’t assume you’re invincible: Bushwalking can be a challenging and rewarding activity, but it also has some risks. Even the fittest and most experienced hiker can experience accidents, injuries or illnesses. Carry a first-aid kit, extra clothing, and basic survival necessities to prepare for any unforeseen circumstances.


Q: How long should I prepare for bushwalking in advance?

A: The length of preparation may vary depending on the length and difficulty of the walk. Consider preparing for at least one week ahead.

Q: Is it necessary to get travel insurance for bushwalking?

A: Yes, it is highly advisable. Travel insurance can cover you for any unforeseen circumstances or medical expenses.

Q: Is it safe to bushwalk in hot weather?

A: Bushwalking in hot weather increases your risk of dehydration, sunburn or heatstroke. It’s important to stay hydrated, wear protective clothing and rest often.

In conclusion, bushwalking is a rewarding and memorable outdoor activity that can leave you with unforgettable experiences. By following these dos and don’ts, you can be well-prepared to get the most out of your bushwalking experience while staying safe and respecting the environment.