Washington State - Hikers and mushroom foragers planning to explore public lands in the fall should be aware of hunting seasons and should enter the forest prepared to ensure their own safe-ty by doing simple things such as wearing bright clothing or making noise. It is also im-portant that those entering the forest are prepared to act if they become lost or injured. By consulting maps and weather reports pri-or to departure, potential complications can be mitigated before they become an issue. Pacific County’s undeveloped areas are some of the regions finest! If you plan to go exploring, make sure you are prepared.
To learn more about Washington State hunting seasons, check out this link
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Fall Forest Safety: 10 Simple Tips
1. Educate yourself on hunting seasons and if possible, avoid going out on opening days.
2. Before you leave, let a responsible person know where you are going, what you plan to do, and when you plan to return.
3. Adequately prepare for the trip. Prior knowledge of the area, weather, and terrain is essential. Understand your physical limitations. Bring an emergency pack in case you become lost or injured.
4. Come equipped with a map of the area. Pay attention to your sur-roundings, noting landmarks and relating these to your location on the map. If you are foraging for wild mushrooms, be sure to look up as you walk so that you do not become disoriented.
5. Wear an article of blaze orange clothing.
6. Avoid wearing brown and white, which could be mistaken for a deer’s white tail.
7. Keep your dog on a leash, also outfitted with a blaze orange vest or bandana.
8. Stay on designated trails and avoid bushwacking.
9. Make noise to alert hunters to your presence. If you hear shooting, be sure to shout so the hunters know you are in the vicinity.
10. If you are foraging for wild mushrooms, do not consume anything you are not 100% sure about before consulting reference materials or an expert.