Stay safe in Shetland's Outdoors
Shetland's outdoors is an incredible wonderland to discover, with magnificent coastlines and beaches, rugged hillsides landscapes, but we need to stay safe doing so.
The Scottish Outdoor Access Code explains how to venture out there responsibly, but it is important to be safe out and about in nature and the elements too.
Know Your Route:
- Waymarked routes such as the core paths and access routes in Shetland take you through some of Shetland’s best scenery and you can download maps and GPX files of routes.
- Making your own way and using a GPS or phone navigation app is fine too, but take a physical map and compass and know how to use them.
- You can literally feel like you’ve experienced all four seasons in a day in Shetland. Waterproofs, a hat or cap, and warm clothing are worth carrying even in summer.
- You don’t necessarily need mountain boots, but shoes with a good grip are essential. There are lots of boggy areas in Shetland, so waterproof footwear is good if you want to keep dry feet.
- An emergency blanket or bivy bag takes up little space.
Fuel your fun:
- Even if you’re not on an epic trek something to drink and a snack in your pocket is a good thing.
- It’s nice to share a bit of food with friends, have a breather, and enjoy the view rather than wear yourself out.
Keep in contact:
- Let someone know your plans and when you intend to return
- Take a phone. Maybe with a location app on it such as what3words or UK grid ref finder in case you need to share your location.
- Many rucksacks now have built in whistles to attract attention, if not may be put one in yours?
- If you require emergency assistance ring 999 and ask for Coast Guard.
In the water:
- Follow the advice in Shetland’s Water Safety Guide.
- Check the weather forecast; and tides if exploring beaches.
- Be wary of cliff edges; they may be undercut.
- Follow and carry any recommended 'activity specific' safety guidelines and equipment.
- Do not approach wild, or domestic animals and keep any dogs under control, preferably on a lead.