Bellevue College Offers Diablo Lake Boat Tour for Students: Hike Safely With These Tips

Sean Wu // The Watchdog

On Friday, Aug. 25, from 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., students have the chance to take part in a guided boat tour on Diablo Lake. Throughout the day, participants will do the following: “Learn about the Cascade area’s indigenous people, natural history, surrounding wildlife habitat, early explorers and settlers and the challenges of building the three Skagit River Hydroelectric Project dams,” according to an Instagram post by BC Student Engagement.

The event, sponsored by the Student Environmental Sustainability Fund (SESF), provides transportation and snacks. Registration for the tour closes on Aug. 4, and applicants will be notified of their decision by Aug. 11. Please direct any questions you may have to

Sean Wu // The Watchdog

Summer is often the preferred season for outdoor activities; however, while the heat can push you out of the house, it can also push you into dangerous situations. Thanks to our beautiful state, Washintonians are offered the worthwhile experience of many hikes. From trails around Diablo Lake to Mount Rainier, with at least an hour’s drive away, many stunning trails can be found and explored. However, many casual hikers often go unprepared, leading to some possibilities of trouble. 

In a study of missing hikers conducted by in 2019, it found that 41% of the individuals surveyed went missing due to wandering off the trail. This was followed by bad weather (17%) and falling off the trail (16%). For the individuals who were not found before night fell, they were faced with finding a key component to survival: warmth. Most individuals found their warmth from clothes (12%), but fire and camping gear (both 10%) were not far behind. 

When hikers get lost, a trying dilemma is the decision of whether to move or stay put. The survey found that 65% of lost people kept moving, leaving 35% remaining in place. It was then stated that 77% were rescued, while 23% found their own way out. Out of the 103 survivors they surveyed, 11 of them were lost in a part of Washington.

The next aspect to surviving in the wilderness is shelter. Eleven percent used their camping gear, 9% discovered caves and other shelters, and trees and man-made caves tied at 8%. As for a water source, the majority of hikers were able to find a body of water (24%). 

Sean Wu // The Watchdog

Surviving in the wilderness is challenging, especially when one does not intend to face those struggles when they start their hike. According to the USDA, “Panic is your greatest enemy”; so, how does one mitigate their chances of ending up in a similar situation to the hikers from the survey?

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Forest Service recommends the following:

  • Bring more food and water than you plan to use
  • Bring a compass you know how to use
  • Bring appropriate maps (you can print your own) and study the terrain you will walk
  • Wear sturdy hiking boots, clothing you can layer and an additional pair of socks
  • A blanket, matches and a flashlight in a water-resistant container 
  • Research any warning the area currently has

The National Park Service encourages individuals to bring the following ten essentials:  

  • A navigation system
  • Sun protection
  • Insulation
  • Illumination
  • First-aid supplies
  • Fire starters
  • Repair kit and tools
  • Nutrition
  • Hydration
  • Emergency shelter

The Washington Trails Association has compiled a “Hiking How To” guide. In their “Spring Hiking Tips,” they mention that hikers should check out their trip reports to read what the current conditions of the trail are.

As bulldogs are not the best breed for a hiking companion, make sure to research, get prepared and stay close to the trail’s path.