Growing up on Storm King Mountain in Cornwall on Hudson, New York I learned early that if you are going into the woods in the Fall you should plan to see hunters. The Fall is a great time to explore trails but it is also primetime hunting season in New York State.

If you are planning to hit the trail this Fall the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYS DEC) wants you to expect to see a hunter. It is also reminding hunters to expect to see hikers. Learning to safely share the woods this time of year is essential.

How to Share the Woods During Hunting Season in New York

NYSDEC via YouTube 2
NYSDEC via YouTube 2

It is important that if you plan to spend time in the woods either hiking or hunting you have prepared properly. The NYS DEC has a lot of helpful tips for both hunters and hikers online. Probably the biggest thing to remember no matter how you plan to use the woods in the Hudson Valley is that you have a plan and you tell someone about it.

Don't head into the woods unprepared and definitely don't head out without telling someone where you are going and when you'll be back. It is also important the hikers realize hunters are in the woods with weapons. Hunters need to keep in mind hikers are in the woods for the trails.

NYSDEC via YouTube
NYSDEC via YouTube

Also, non-hunters have to realize that no matter their feelings about hunting, hunters have a right to use the land and harvest from it. Some lands that hikers might enjoy are actually set aside for hunters as is the case with Wildlife Management Areas (WMA). It is important before you set out that you understand the type of property you are entering.

How to Stay Safe in Public Wildlife Management Area in New York

Keeping your dog on a leash is good no matter where you are hiking but it is essential on public land designated for hunting. Put bright colors on both you and your pet when you are in the woods so you can easily be spotted by both hunters and other people using the woods. You will be glad you are visible if it turns out you need help and someone has to locate you.

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Shares Safety Tips

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