Summer’s here, and that means that ticks are, too. Don’t let these small arachnids deter you from enjoying the outdoors, though. It’s easy to take precautions and enjoy your hike at Arabia Mountain National Heritage Area just the same.
Here are a few tips to stay tick-free when you’re out on the trails:
- Use bug spray. Yes, it’s stinky. Use it. Make sure to apply beforehand and bring some with you to apply mid-hike if you’re out for a longer period of time.
- Make sure to apply extra around your waistband and ankles – these are places where ticks are most likely to get close to your skin.
- Wear long pants & long socks. Shorts offer plentiful and easy access for ticks; wearing long pants in addition to bug spray really reduces the areas where ticks can climb on you.
- Tuck it in. Tuck in your shirt and tuck your pants into your socks. That makes it harder for the ticks to get access to your skin.
- Know where you are. Be aware of your surroundings. Ticks are going to be more common in the grasses of Vaughters’ Farm than the rock outcrop of Arabia Mountain.
- Check yourself. Make sure to do a thorough tick check (especially around your waistband and ankles) when you get home. A good tick check lets you rest easy knowing you’re tick-free.
Now that you’re ready to hike tick-free, get on out and enjoy the trails! Plan your hike here.
Photo above: American Dog Tick, Dermacentor variabilis, a species found around central Georgia. Credit CDC.