Although the value of every minute and time spent in nature is invaluable, nature walks at night can be very effective and advantageous instead of the popular daytime nature walks.
Although it may sound scary at first, yes, night walks are very inspiring and relaxing. Night walking, as an activity that reflects the beauty of nature at night and relaxes you by breathing the dark air, should be carried out with certain precautions.
The experience of your night walk will be invaluable, accompanied by the precautions detailed below!
Can You Hike in the Night?
Yes, you can hike at night. And as for the question, is night hiking legal?; although it is not regulated under certain laws, night hiking is legal in many places.
Hiking is an activity limited to daytime hours and allows you to expand your horizons on a route under the stars at night. It will be a very unique experience to hike under a full moon or during a meteor shower with the breeze of dark air, accompanied by certain periods.
By connecting with the environment not only during the day but also at night, you can get the opportunity to get to know mother nature more closely. That’s why you should hike at night and taste the experience. In this case, it is possible to taste the pleasure that will be given in more detail below.
So what should be considered for night hiking?
First of all, you should have a good light source and keep your vision clear, as you will eventually be in a night walking activity. To do this, you must learn to accustom your eyes to the light.
Your anatomical vision, which can adapt to the environment thanks to the sunlight coming from nature during the day, may deteriorate or be disturbed by the light coming from a single point through a specific and powerful source at night. In this context, you may find night hiking a bit tiring and difficult to observe at first. But don’t worry.
Give your eyes some time to adapt and avoid looking directly at the light source. In addition, using your peripheral vision will be much healthier. For headlamp or flashlight use, prioritize red lights. Note that your eyes will be more sensitive to longer wavelengths of red light. In this direction, you can choose this way so that your night vision is not affected.
On the other hand, choose products with multiple brightness settings. Thus, the brightness you will use in a setting suitable for the environment will help you provide better vision without harming your eyes. As another piece of advice, if you’re still new to night hiking, don’t start it solo. Try to continue with groups for familiarity and practicality.
Is It OK to Hike in the Dark?
In the framework of the precautions taken in certain dimensions, yes, it is OK. In addition to the process of adapting the eye to night vision mentioned above, certain points must be taken into account to be able to hike in the dark, especially for beginners.
For example, it would be more appropriate to start with the sunset times. Adapting your eyes and yourself to the dark gradually and with a certain process will improve your hiking experience and your night vision. On the other hand, you should not forget that hiking at night and those done during the day will not have the same climatic conditions.
Accordingly, you need to consider that your hiking, which may be hot and mild during the day, may be exposed to much more challenging and colder weather at night. Moreover, at this stage, you should have the necessary equipment and be able to protect yourself.
On the other hand, a full moon is recommended for night hiking. Especially for beginners, hiking under the full moon provides a much more open field night vision.
As another piece of advice, start with a path you are familiar with. It will be much healthier for you to go on a hiking route already schematized in your mind until your night vision settles down and becomes professional in this context.
Similarly, choosing the right trail also affects the quality of your dark hiking experience. For example, open areas and straight paths where the light can easily reflect will make your job quite easy at the start, on the other hand, dark hiking in forest areas with dense trees will be much more challenging.
Another piece of advice is to get in touch with the wilderness, as in daytime hiking. Recognizing plants and animals that perform different activities during the day and at night and identifying the difference between them allows you to make your way more secure in the dark.
Dark/night hiking under basic precautions like this will be extremely safe.
Can You Hike at Night in Colorado?
Yes, you can. Colorado is one of the best places for night hiking!
In this context, Aurora-Full Moon Hike, Boulder-Green Mountain, Colorado Springs-Garden of Gods, Fort Collins-Lory State Park, and Roxborough State Park can be given as five guided night-hiking places that you can experience in Colorado.
As a common point, these areas, which are designated for good moon watching, offer you unique views of Colorado, especially as guided night hiking spots.
Aurora-Full Moon Hike: This hiking spot, which is suitable for everyone over the age of 6, offers a unique night hiking experience as the crown of many seasons, especially summer periods. A walk accompanied by a full moon will not only take you to a completely different horizon of Colorado but will also offer magnificent views.
Boulder-Green Mountain: The night hiking experience you will spend on Green Mountain, which will accompany you with the stars in the company of unique nature, will be unforgettable. Thanks to its comfortable and open space for walking, it is a good spot for hiking at night.
Colorado Springs-Garden of Gods: As a recommended spot for hiking, preferably during sunset, the Garden of Gods offers you uniquely beautiful night views of Colorado during night hiking.
Fort Collins-Lory State Park: With its green and flat terrain, Lory State Park, which has an ideal path, especially for those who have just started night hiking, provides a hiking experience under the stars.
Roxborough State Park: While its vertical and unique slopes decorate your nights, your night hiking experience will be extremely simple and satisfying thanks to its smooth and easy path.
Why Do People Hike at Night?
If you don’t want to be limited to daylight only and want to experience nature with night vision, then night hiking is the outdoor activity for you!
First of all, it has been proven that night hiking enhances and sensitizes all perceptions other than night vision, but it has benefited people in many ways. While the sensitivity of your senses, such as hearing, smell, or touch, increases with the narrowness of your night vision, night hiking gives you interesting experiences.
On the other hand, it is a unique activity to get to know the stars and the moon. Don’t you think it’s a precious acquisition to be familiar with nature by walking and getting closer to astronomy? You will not find the coolness of the dark air under a bright full moon or accompanied by a bright star cluster.
Moreover, it allows you to do this by helping you get rid of the stress of daily life. When you spend the whole day in haste, with assignments that need to be trained, and daily routines, when you spend the entire day in a hurry and stress, night hiking is perfect as a relaxing and horizon-expanding activity to get rid of these negativities.
On the other hand, you will have the opportunity to get to know mother nature more closely. Instead of just getting to know it under the sunlight, you can also understand how it functions at night and how it hosts living things.
Can You Climb a Mountain at Night?
Yes, you can climb at night. In this direction, since it can be much more dangerous than daytime hiking, certain conditions and safety precautions must be fulfilled for night hiking. Otherwise, serious accidents may result.
- Light Source: First of all, you should make sure you have a good light source. In this direction, a headlamp will be much more useful and healthy. Before climbing, you should check the energy status of your light and take measures accordingly. It will be much healthier to buy, preferably rechargeable headlamps.
- Secondary Light Source: Secondly, you must have a lantern with you. At this point, when you experience a malfunction with your headlamp, which you have taken into account to the last point, you should have a secondary light source so that your situation in a high position does not cause serious and vital problems in the dark of night. Preferably, lanterns with high brightness and low energy consumption will be more useful.
- Look Where You Step: Since the darkness will be quite dangerous, constantly monitor and control your steps to ensure the stability of the area you step on.
- Keep Yourself Warm: As you will encounter cold weather at night, you should also take into account that this temperature will gradually decrease as the height from the ground increases during the climbing process, depending on the geographical location. In this context, you should acquire the necessary equipment and clothes by equipping them. Carry materials such as a hot water bottle or thermos that will keep you warm.
- Determine Your Route Well: Know your route and review it thoroughly to have a diagram in mind before climbing, as it will be difficult to see where you are going in the dark. Pay attention to the points that need to be considered by specifying the specific situations for your route.
When Should You Not Go Hiking?
It can be difficult to determine the best time for hiking when it comes to the route and period to go. However, it can be said that the best times for hiking will be the summer and autumn months, depending on the variables.
At this point, the snow in the area should have melted, and the slippery spots should have decreased. In this context, the answer to the question will be that spring and winter are the worst periods for hiking.
First of all, the spring season is a season with plenty of precipitation, and after winter, it cannot provide a suitable ground for hiking. For many hikers, this period causes problems by creating muddy, wet, and slippery soils. It is also a period that many wish to end as soon as possible and leave its place for summer.
On the other hand, winter is a period that should not be chosen for hiking. Likewise, as a period when the actual hiking process is gradually slowing down, snowy, rainy, and icy paths slow you down and make your walk difficult, while at the same time, you get tired more than usual by experiencing weight due to the equipment and clothes you wear and take with you to stay warm.
Similarly, very serious accidents can occur in the winter season, which is a season that will give you a lot of difficulties in terms of food.
Eventually, under the question of “Is night hiking legal?” we can clearly say that you can hike at night safely.
Supportively, even while spending time in nature is priceless, nighttime nature walks may be just as beneficial and productive as the more common daylight ones.
Yes, night walks are highly inspirational and calming, even though they may initially seem frightful. It is important to take some safety measures when night hiking since it may help you relax by allowing you to breathe in the nighttime beauty of nature. With these safety measures in place, your night hiking will be a priceless experience!