Know before you go. You and your group should be informed about the national park you are visiting and the activity you are participating in. Be prepared so that you can fully enjoy your time.
Use the NPS Trip Planning Guide and Checklist to help plan your trip. The guide provides key safety considerations you can take to help you avoid some of the most common mistakes people make when visiting national parks. The guide is divided into the four phases of your trip and provides a checklist at the end which summarizes the key safety considerations:
- Before the Trip - “Know before you go” What you need to know and consider before taking your family, friends, or group out to a park
- Arrival at the Park - “Ask a Ranger” Check your gear and weather before you leave. Get up-to-date information on park requirements and safety information.
- During your Trip -“Assess and Adjust” Actions to consider while you and your group are enjoying the activity
- After the Trip - “Share the Experience” What you can do to be better prepared for your next park adventure.
We also have additional articles to help you with selecting the Ten Essentials, preparing your Trip Plan, and Emergency Planning. Don't miss reading these to help you be prepared for an emergency!
NOTE: This guide was prepared to give a general idea of planning actions to consider for a trip to a park with a group to avoid some of the most common mistakes people make. Be aware that the actions in this guide may need to be adjusted to meet the needs of your group members, the park you are visiting, the time of year you are visiting, if you extend your trip for more than one day, and any other special considerations.