|Yes it can get hot with bad water even in places like the Colorado Trail. Prepare!|
How to prevent heat-related illnesses from happening on a hike:
- Take frequent rest breaks in cool, shady areas
- Drink plenty of water and eat salty foods. Carry electrolyte replacement (like Nuun or Liquid IV Hydration) to add to water. Be sure to carry plenty of water in desert environments. if the sources are far apart or contaminated, prepare with filtering capability, a good guidebook, and containers to tote water. You can also over-drink and deplete your sodium levels, leading to other potentially harmful conditions. When you drink, don't overdo it either! Do NOT drink Alcohol which can lead to quicker dehydration as it pulls water from your body.
- Wear lightweight clothing and light colors. Wear a lightweight hat. Use sunscreen to prevent sunburn.
- Carry maps and guidebooks so you know where the water sources are. If you pass a source, no matter what, fill up. You can also collect water off your tent, etc. during storms. Check for areas too where you can take a dip and cool off. Use hiker intel to tell you what water conditions are like en route or ask in hiker forums before you go.
- Never go off on a hike, no matter how short it is, without water.
- Use common sense. If you are prone to heat related illness, choose a different location or wait for a better time to hike (such as early AM or late PM)
- Carry a cell phone for emergencies and hike with a buddy.
- If you feel hot, dry, your urine output is low, that means you are severely dehydrated and your core body temp is rising. Especially if you STOP sweating when you should be. That means DANGER. Stop immediately, rest, and rehydrate. Sunstroke kills!