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Jungle trekking may seem like the adventure of a lifetime, but can quickly turn into a nightmare if adventurers are ill prepared. While there are risks inherent in any outdoor activity, jungle trekking can take even experienced hikers into an environment with different concerns and unexpected situations. Taking basic precautions when jungle trekking can help protect the traveler, companions, and the environment, while still providing a thrilling and incredible journey.
Knowing the risks of a particular area can help identify dangerous before they imperil the situation. From poisonous snakes to unreliable water sources, every jungle and often every path will carry its own dangers. Do some research before jungle trekking, using travel guides and the Internet. The web can be a particularly useful source in identifying issues that have recently arisen on a particular track or route; flooded paths or a high instance of animal sightings may be more quickly reported online on travel sites rather than through traditional travel guides.
Most jungles are hot and humid, making them a perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes and other insects. Long sleeves and pants in a light material, such as cotton, can help reduce exposure to biting insects as well as protect from sunburn and prevent overheating. A hat with mosquito netting can also be a surprisingly useful accessory. Footwear should be suitable to rough terrain, quick drying, and broken in to prevent blisters. Do not wear brand new boots or sneakers while jungle trekking, as it can create weeks of pain for feet and ankles.
Consider jungle trekking with an experienced guide or tour group. While this does diminish the sense of breaking new ground in the wilderness, it is often markedly safer and can provide access to sites and information that would be missed by new visitors to the area. Trek guides have advanced knowledge of the area and may be more attuned to both the dangers and wonders of the location; be sure to check the reputation of the guide or tour agency through online reviews before signing up.
Remember that, for all their ferocity and mystery, jungles are exceptionally fragile environments. Littering, poaching, disturbing wildlife, or even picking plants can damage an ecosystem severely leading to population drops and even extinctions throughout the life chain of the jungle. Be extremely careful around any wildlife, and do not feed, pet, or even approach any wild animals without express permission from guides or park officials. Jungles around the world are under threat from a variety of factors such as logging, habitat loss, and climate change; to preserve these magnificent regions for the future, it is imperative to be respectful of the environment while jungle trekking.
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