These are the things you should do as hike leader
We will try to provide fairly detailed trail guides for the hikes, unless they are on well marked trails or trails people are very familiar with. Leaders won’t be responsible for scheduling or announcing the hike. The coordinator will do that (though the leader will certainly have input).
Sign up as a hike leader volunteer HERE.
Before the hike
- Understand the route, either by pre-hiking or by using a hike guide
- Count the hikers and compare to the pre-registration (if we’re pre-registering). Sign up any hikers who haven’t preregistered.
- Ideally, keep the group to 15 people. If someone has volunteered as a second leader, you can add a second staggered group. You can be flexible on this, but 15 is an ideal group size.
- Ask for a volunteer as ‘Sweep.’ You will want to wait at every decision point in the trail until the sweep catches up.
During the hike
- Encourage the group to follow the hike guidelines. They’re in place for everyone’s comfort
- Set an appropriate pace…not too slow, but not so fast that everyone falls behind.
- Take sufficient breaks…especially for lunch. Hopefully a lunch spot will be pre-selected (not necessary on short hikes)
- Greet oncoming hikers and let them know that they’re approaching a group. Make sure that your group is courteous in letting them pass.
- Let the group know that they’re all ‘leaders,’ and should take responsibility for each other.
Nice to do things
- Pre-hike the route (possibly with someone else who may later serve as co-leader)
- Ask the hikers to introduce themselves. Ask for familiarity with the trail, because they may be good ‘co-leaders.’
- Encourage the group to talk about historical or natural information about the hike route.
- Carry a first aid kit (actually, it’s a good idea for all hikers to carry one. We can provide one if you don’t have one.
- While emergencies are rare, you should know how to get help. That probably means having a cell phone.