|CHS Hike Leader Tips
CHS HomeThe following are some tips and things to keep in mind as a CHS hike leader:
Seattle Hiking Home
Seattle Mountaineers Home
If you have more questions after reading these tips, please contact the course administrator.
- Bookmark the main CHS website, and the CHS trips shortcut to the database. If you're on Facebook and haven't joined the CHS group page yet, Steve can add you. Also useful is the Seattle Mountaineers Hiking group page.
- Once we have the target number of hikes for each section, we will post them to the Mountaineers database in time for signup--you will never need to post your own CHS hikes. Feel free to edit your hike posting and enter meet time and place and other hike details, but remember that the postings are there to facilitate signup and carpooling only. Hikers will be reminded to use your descriptions for trip details--not the stock database stats or description--for a given destination.
- You're welcome to offer Grads Only, Midweek, Photography, Nature, or Just for Fun CHS hikes. We've had mixed results getting participation on these specialty hikes, and you may need to cancel or convert it into a club hike or private hike if you don't get sufficient signup.
- The club database has several quirks and limitations, but we have workarounds for many of them. For a co-led hike, only one leader can be the primary leader and access the roster. If you would like the other of you to be primary, just let Steve or Kelly know. Likewise, let us know early if you would like to have fewer than 10-11 hikers; if you need to change the date or destination of the hike; if you're having trouble adding or deleting someone from the roster; or other website issues.
- On or about Tuesday before a weekend trip, send your "Hello Hiker" email to the participants. Send these using your own email client instead of through the club website so that each participant has everyone else's email address. Be clear about your expectations and try to anticipate questions: Are you requiring that all hikers wear hiking boots as opposed to low-hiker/trail runners? How much water should they bring? How is the road to the trailhead and do they need a pass? What's the weather forecast? Will there be snow and are traction devices recommended? Are there stretches of exposed, "airy," or eroded trail? A couple of days before, call ranger stations, check WTA trip reports, double-check the weather forecast, and give your hikers any last-minute details.
- On hike day, watch out for your participants--safety first, fun second, destination last! Let them benefit from your experience and that of the other hikers on the trip. Take advantage of teaching moments--why we do what we do when we do regarding trail etiquette, food and water, stretching, clothing adjustments, rest step, Leave no Trace, map and compass, and the like. It doesn't need to be overly formal or involve the whole group.
- After the hike, finalize your roster and file a trip report. We use the rosters to monitor attendance and make sure that the participants are doing the required two hikes per month. If there were any serious injuries or safety issues, add those to the Incident Reporting section of the trip report. That information goes directly to the Mountaineers Safety Committee. If you have a no-show or other "naughty hiker"--wandering off, being rude or confrontational, overcharging for carpools--let Steve or Kelly know ASAP and we'll have a conversation with that person. If you feel it warrants the attention of the Hiking Committee, add your comments to the Confidential Participant Performance Notes section of the trip report.
- There is zero tolerance for sexual harassment, racial/gender/bias/age discrimination and the like. You're our eyes and ears--if you see it, report it!