HEALTH

Arizona park ranger offers advice for hiking in the record heat

  • A couple enjoy lunch on one of the scenic points at Grand Canyon West on the Hualapai Indian reservation in Arizona. A new study published in the journal Science suggests the western Grand Canyon formed 70 million years ago.

    A couple enjoy lunch on one of the scenic points at Grand Canyon West on the Hualapai Indian reservation in Arizona. A new study published in the journal Science suggests the western Grand Canyon formed 70 million years ago.  (AP Photo/Jeff Robbins)

  • Dec. 7, 2006: Tourists visit the Hualapai Indian Reservation along the western end of the Grand Canyon, which may have formed as much as 70 million years ago.

    Dec. 7, 2006: Tourists visit the Hualapai Indian Reservation along the western end of the Grand Canyon, which may have formed as much as 70 million years ago.  (AP Photo/Jake Bacon)

In light of the deaths on Arizona’s hiking trails this weekend, Fox 10’s Nicole Garcia looked into how to handle the heat.

It's a dry heat.

One-hundred-twenty degrees? No big deal.

That's what we heard from a lot of people who set out for an early morning hike on Father's Day.

“Stay hydrated,” says Tareq Ramirez. “We got plenty of water in our backpack. We got sunscreen on, ready to go … [The] earlier the better.”

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The threat of triple digit temperatures didn't deter this dad from the hike ... He came prepared.

But this dad got a scare while hiking with his two kids at Piestewa Peak.

He called 9-1-1 after running out of water on the trail.

Firefighters responded ... but fortunately ... the family got down the mountain safely ... and no one needed to be rescued in this situation.

“Just be prepared,” said Park Ranger Sean Peters. “It’s hot. It’s unforgiving.”

Park rangers will be at trail heads all day long.

They can't stop people from hiking in the extreme heat nor can they close the trails.

“It’s not really an option right now, because there are so many access points,” Peters said. “That’s why we’re out here all day handing out water and advice.”

He expects the 120-degree forecast will bring daredevils out who seek bragging rights.

“I think a lot of them want to hike the hottest day of the year to say, 'We did it. We made it.'”

In order to live to tell about it ... what you do before the hike is key.

Drink water the night before, bring plenty of water and expect to lower your expectations.

It's okay to turn around before you reach the summit.

“Don’t think, 'Yeah, I’m a pro. It’s not going to happen to me.' It can happen to anyone – just be aware.”

For more stories go to fox10phoenix.com

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