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Caution outdoor enthusiasts

October 10, 2010

Dillon Sutherland, Staff Writer

For all you would-be hikers and explorers, I must give you a word or warning. If you are interested in going hiking, particularly on the Brasstown Bald Trail located behind Rollins hall, you must be careful. I was hiking recently on the trail and came very close to having an unfortunate encounter with a wild boar.

If you are out and about, be watchful. There are plenty of dangerous animals on the trail and in the woods. There are not only wild boars, but also black bears, along with other threats. While you may not have ever thought about running into these are dangerous creatures, every time you set out on a fun trek through the wilderness they are out there.

Believe me, there’s no feeling worse than standing on a dark, cold path with the bushes rustling in front of you as you heard a wild, vicious animal snarling and grunting. You have no idea what the beast is going to do.

Wild boars are some of the most dangerous animals you can encounter in the wild. They have razor sharp tusks, massive muscles and appear very intimidating. If you were to encounter one, the best thing to do is to leave the area as quickly as possible. Never attempt to approach the animal.

Although black bears are known to be less aggressive than grizzlies, you should still remain cautious. Your chances of running into bear are not slim, but if by chance you do, try to leave. If the bear does not see you, walk away quietly; but, if the bear has spotted you, stay where you are. Then, turn to face the bear and slowly walk away.

Along with taking the necessary precautions with wildlife, make sure you have adequate sunlight. You do not want to set out on an expedition and run out of precious sunlight on a dark and enclosed trail. Plan ahead of time how long you believe it will take for you to complete your trip.

Everyone should just know to be as safe as possible and to keep an open mind to possible threats that exist all around. We attend school in an area with intriguing and freighting animals. If ever you wish to go hike or explore, just keep remember the potential threats and how to handle them.

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