Alberta Campgrounds | Seeing a Skunk While Hiking

Alberta Campgrounds | Seeing a Skunk While Hiking

There are many Alberta campgrounds that hikers can go to. To enjoy scenic beauty of this province. And enjoy all of the sites in Alberta.

And while people are camping, not only looking at the beautiful scenery can be enjoyed. But there are a wide variety of animals that hikers will also be likely to see.

Depending on the time of year that they are hiking. As well as what part of the province hikers are in. There can be many different animals to see.

From beautiful birds, to squirrels and rabbits. To larger animals such as deer, elk and even Moose. In the mountains there are bighorn sheep. And many parts of Alberta are considered bear country. So hikers are likely to encounter a bear every once in a while.

Typically, hikers will keep their distance from these animals both big and small. Because encountering humans, animals can become aggressive, lose their fear. Or depend on humans for their food source.

However, as majestic as it may be to encounter animals in their natural habitats. There is one animal that hikers do not want to encounter. This is the skunk.

While people are not likely to encounter skunks until dusk, when they wake up to start foraging for their food. They are nocturnal creatures, which means the likelihood of encountering skunks regularly is quite low.


However, there are several things for campers to keep in mind. So that they can stay safe, and avoid startling the animal. And avoid getting sprayed themselves.

The first thing people need to keep in mind is that skunks have extremely poor eyesight. Which means the first thing that hikers need to do is stop moving. When they stopped moving, the skunks may not even be able to act that they are there.

And because of that, the skunks may be free to run away. If this does not happen, if hikers are carrying a flashlight, they can shine the flashlight once. To encourage the skunk to run away to freedom.

When it is safe to do so, people can start moving backwards incredibly slowly, and silently. By putting as much distance between them and the skunks as possible. Can help the skunk feel more free to run away. And be less likely to hit them if they spray.

If the skunks are travelling with their babies, they will become even more defensive. So even greater care needs to be taken. When hikers are hiking through Alberta campgrounds.

However, the skunk will do several posturing techniques. To warn their predator into running away. Including stamping their feet, hissing at their predator.

As well as pretending that they are going to charge. While they will not charge, this comes just before turning their back and around, and aiming their anal glands.

By understanding how to escape a skunk encounter in Alberta campgrounds. Without the skunk spraying. Is something that all hikers should know about. And so when they do encounter this animal. They can confidently leave the area, and let the skunk continue to forage for food.

Alberta Campgrounds | Seeing a Skunk While Hiking

Whether people are camping in Alberta campgrounds were if they are hiking. There is a good chance that they are eventually going to run into a skunk.

While skunks are mostly nocturnal animals, coming out and dusk to forage for insects which they feed upon. Unless hikers are out that desk, or people are camping and sit around the campfire. They are less likely to encounter this mammal.

Skunks have a reputation for spraying a noxious substance. However, people should understand that this is a last line of defence. Skunks do not want to spray. Because not only does it deplete their energy. It leaves them defenceless for up to ten days.

Therefore, skunks will only spray if they feel it is absolutely necessary. And while people can stop and give the skunk a wide berth. If they do not have their animals on a leash. The animal may threaten the skunk, causing them to become the victim of a spraying.

This is why it is important that anyone visiting Alberta campgrounds should have their animal leashed at all times. Because it can be quite common to run into a wide variety of wild animals.

Skunks can also spray extremely far away, up to 3 m. And the smell can reach five point 6 km away. Because of how far reaching that smell is. If people or animals are sprayed, they should avoid going inside.

Because the noxious fluid contains chemicals that can cause skin irritation, watery eyes and runny nose. As well as temporary blindness if it is sprayed in the victim’s eyes. It also can cause nausea and vomiting in people who smell this at a close distance.


By going inside, contains the smell, causing people who were not sprayed to get affected. Therefore, it is important that people and animals who are sprayed. Should stay outside, where they can off gas.

While tomato juice is known as a way to minimize the smell. This is because the acid in tomatoes can neutralize the oil. However, if tomato juice is not on hand. Solution created from 3% hydrogen peroxide and baking soda can be very effective.

And if those things are not on hand, white vinegar and water can also help minimize the smell. For the clothes, people should simply launder them in detergent and it might take a couple of washes to eliminate the smell.

If the victim was sprayed directly in the eyes, they may experience temporary blindness. And if this is the case, they should wince their eyes with cool water several times. And that should bring some relief.

It is also known that skunks will likely sprayed their nest, to protect their offspring from predators. So if people start smelling a skunk smell very close by. They should stop, and go the other way. Everyone going to Alberta campgrounds should know what to do when encountering a skunk.

While this might be because something has been sprayed. It is also likely that they are coming close to a skunk dental. And since skunks are far more defensive when their babies are around. People should stay away from a nest.