BLUEFIELD, VA (WVNS)–If you plan to hike anytime soon, make sure you’re up to speed on how to stay safe.

Hiking piques the interest of residents and tourists across the Mountain State during the summer months. But, if you’re new to the trekking scene, there are basic necessities you should learn first to stay safe.

Daniel Ingram, a Sales Rep with Mefcor Outdoors in Bluefield, Virginia said it’s important to plan ahead.

“One of the first things you’re going to want to do…let people know where you’re going. Always file a trip plan, so if something happens, people will kind of know when to come look for you,” Ingram said.

After you figure out where you want to hike, check to see if the trails have cell service or carry a GPS, so you don’t get lost. Another piece of advice is to wear proper hiking shoes and clothing that can keep water and sweat away so you can stay dry.

Snacks and water are essential needs as well so you and members of your group stay hydrated and energized.

Ingram said while on the trails, it’s also possible to have an encounter with an animal.

“Most of the time when you go to certain areas, they’ll tell you some of the things to be aware of. I definitely wouldn’t hesitate carrying some type of bear spray. Lots of times just being big, making noise is one thing that will keep animals away,” Ingram said.

Ingram adds it wouldn’t hurt to learn basic first aid in the event something happens.

Hiking and happiness can go hand in hand or foot in boot.