Hike Safe

Cochise County has a diverse outdoor recreation environment and access to many great wilderness areas. The County contains several National and State Parks that offer great views and activties. Enjoying the outdoors safely and responsibly takes a few steps. Take some time and review our outdoor recreation tips.

Proper knowledge of gear usage is essential. Knowing how to use a topographic map and read terrain features can help you find your position or that of the trail you are seeking. Taking a wilderness first aid class can help you if you or someone you happen upon is injured in the backcountry. Having a comfortable backpack that can fit all of the essential survival items and extra water can help you in case of trouble. Make sure that you wear good quality footwear based on the terrain and the activities you are planning on partipating in. Always break in new boots ahead of time and wear comfortable and breathable socks. Pack extra mole-skin or blister bandages in case you start to develop hot spots. This is far from a definitive guide on backcountry survival or first aid, but it is a good starting point for most of your adventures.

10 Essentials

Light Source

Having a good light source will help you if you get stuck out past sun down and can turn what could have been a rescue into a night time walkout. Make sure you have a chemlight and another small flashlight as a backup. Carrying multiple lightsources that all use the same battery ensures you can swap power between devices.

Signalling Devices

Whistle. You can blow a whistle all day for help - remember three short blasts and a pause is the international signal for distress. A signal mirror can aid you in being seen by a helicopter or rescuers searching for you.


Matches (water-proof), lighter, commercial firestarter and or a candle. Always be responsible with fire. Know the restrictions that are in place and obey them.


A high quality kife or multi-tool can help with small repairs on the trail or survivial activities.


Large plastic bag (trash / contractor’s bag) or thermal tarp / space blanket. These items can keep you warm or create extra shade.

Water and Food

Around 1 liter per hour of activity is a good rule of thumb. Make sure to supplement your water intake with powdered gatorade and high energy food bars.

First Aid Kit

Should include a pocket mask, Sam Splint, bulky dressing, protective gloves, bandages, scissors and moleskin for blisters. Take a 24 hours supply of your perosnal medication in small bags with each medication labeled. Consider some over the counter meds such as: Benadryl and Imodium.


A good quality compass with topographic maps of the area can help you find you way. Having a GPS and knowing how to properly use it can save you time and help you navigate properly.


Always bring a cellphone with a fully charged battery and a portable power supply. For more remote settings, bring a Garmin InReach Device or SPOT Personal Locator Beacon.

Warm Clothes

In the desert the temperature can quickly drop at night so make sure to have warm layers to cover up with when it gets cold

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