For any hiker, rock climber, camper and nature lover, the mesmerizing waterfalls of North Carolina are nothing less than a paradise. Unfortunately almost every year the news of drowning or fatal accidents for carelessness can be a drawback. The Catawba River Fest is also being held as an initiative to address these issues. See more on The History Of The Catawba River Fest. Fences and signboards are nothing new in North Carolina state parks; still people tend to ignore them. While the deaths often make to the news, the relatively minor incidents like sprained ankle, bone fracture or head injuries stay out of the limelight.
Safety Measures For Visiting A Waterfall
The waterfalls at North Carolina are quite popular for accidents and natural beauty at the same time. Check out few safety measures that you should follow while hiking in North Carolina.
1. Check Weather
Before setting out with overflowing enthusiasm, keep your eyes and ears open for the weather forecast of the particular area so that you are not caught off-guard by the flash floods, muddy trails and slippery rocks after the rain. While hiking during winter wear proper boots and take necessary precaution to avoid wet trails and icy rocks.
2. Plan When To Start
Although the best time to start hiking is in early morning, the daylight hours vary from season to season. Plan the starting time and calculate the hiking duration accordingly.
3. Deter From Solo Traveling
Accidents or health issues can happen anytime; so it is better to travel in a group and follow the instructions posted on signboards. While traveling in group, even if one person has overlooked the signage, someone else would surely have noticed.
4. Pack Properly
As a continuation of the last rule, it is recommended to carry first aid kit, necessary medications, headlamps, extra shoes or clothing, sufficient water, insect repellant and dry food while visiting a waterfall so that you are never run out of supply.
5. Be Less Adventurous
Yes, no matter how much adrenaline rush you experience, deter yourself from climbing on the rock walls or jumping from the top of waterfalls as slippery and sharp rocks can easy crush you into bits and if not, then the wave current will surely make it up. Besides, the hidden sarsens or logs beneath the foamy water are hard to see from above.
6. Look Out For Kids, Pets And Yourself
While kids and pets don’t have common sense of where to tread and where not, you too can be over-joyous seeing the waterfall and plan on taking a selfie from the top of waterfall, not from the designated vantage point. By any means, keep safe distance from the water.
7. Stay On Designated Trail
Finally, it is your job to keep the nature intact by not going for the under-developed trails and stick to the marked trail. Keep your footing steady and stay away from the edges.
Follow the steps and leave no trace after you leave. Be considerate to fellow visitors and never get into pools of those waterfalls where it is not allowed.