Hiking/Backpacking Insurance for Guides, Clubs, Excursions, & Events

Help protect from significant financial damages in a lawsuit with Sadler's customizable insurance policies.

General Liability Insurance for Hiking/Backpacking

  • High-limits from $1M to $5M
  • Affordable rates
  • Non-Owned and Hired Auto Liability
  • Sex Abuse and Molestation

Accident Insurance for Hiking/Backpacking

  • Reimburse medical bills
  • Limits up to $100k
  • Deductible options



What is hiking and backpacking?Young Hikers in Woods

Hiking is a popular outdoor activity that promotes physical and emotional well-being. Hiking is a vigorous walk that typically takes place on trails and can involve short hikes or long treks over multiple days. The activity is often done in groups and may or may not have a guide.  

There are key differences between backpacking and hiking. To explain, backpacking is typically done over a number of days and involves camping out in tents, providing a more immersive hiking experience. Since hiking takes place in nature, it comes with certain risks that aren’t present with indoor sports, such as exposure to weather and wild animals. 


Hiking/backpacking benefits 

Hiking has a myriad of physical and mental benefits, including:

  • Greater cardiovascular health
  • Promotes mental clarity
  • Stronger core 
  • Boost bone density
  • Improves balance
  • Weight loss
  • May help alleviate muscle and joint pain
  • Improve sleep quality and relieve insomnia
  • Builds endurance 
  • Reduces stress


Hiking/backpacking risks

Like any sport, hiking comes with risks.

  • Breaks and sprains
  • Trips and falls
  • Scrapes and bruises
  • Drowning
  • Blisters
  • Sunburn
  • Falling trees/branches (widowmakers)
  • Extreme weather events such as avalanches, blizzards, thunderstorms, lightning strikes, wildfires, and flash floods
  • Heatstroke
  • Dehydration
  • Wild animals (rattlesnakes, bears, etc.)
  • Insects and ticks
  • Poison oak
  • Altitude sickness
  • Wrong turns
  • Bad decisions (for example, not turning back before dark or taking an unmarked trail)


How to manage hiking/backpacking risksSprained ankle while hiking, friend uses the first aid kit

Before hitting the trails, consider these ways to manage your risk and keep your participants safe

  • Bring plenty of water: It should go without saying that staying hydrated while hiking is of the utmost importance. In fact, dehydration is quite common with outdoor activities, especially those that require walking long distances. 
  • Shoes and gear: Wearing the proper hiking attire can help prevent injuries and manage risk. Notably, hikers should prioritize well-fitting hiking boots or shoes and weather-appropriate clothing.
  • Stay with a buddy: Hiking with others is safer for all, especially beginners. For instance, if someone goes off on their own and gets injured, it might be challenging to locate them.
  • Don’t hike off-trail: Stay on marked trails and don’t go off the path to prevent the risk of getting lost or injured. Unfortunately, doing so can also cause harm to certain plant or animal species.
  • Plan ahead: Planning your hike begins well before you reach the trail. Study a map of the area, understand the skill level needed and develop a hiking itinerary. Some trails are better suited for beginners, while others may be challenging for a novice hiker.
  • Don’t touch wildlife: Beware of feeding or interacting with animal or plant species during your hike. Moreover, not only could this cause injury to yourself, but it could also harm the wildlife. 
  • Check the weather: Choose your clothing and gear based on the time of year and check the weather forecast before heading out. 
  • Be aware: Hiking requires you to be mindful of your surroundings at all times. You must have your eyes peeled for cliffs, fallen trees, or other hazards.
  • Inform others: Leave a copy of your hiking itinerary behind with friends or family, so they know where to look for you if you go missing from the group.

Waivers are another way to manage risk as a hiking business owner. You can customize the following templates as an added layer of protection. 

Waiver/release form for minors

Waiver/release form for adults

COVID-19 waiver 

Visit our risk management page for additional tips and tools to help manage your risk as a backpacking or hiking organization or instructor.


Who needs hiking/backpacking insurance?

Anyone in danger of suffering financial losses due to hiking or backpacking-related lawsuits should consider purchasing an insurance policy, including:

  • Owners of hiking businesses or organizations
  • Hiking teams, clubs, and leagues
  • Hiking instructors or guides 
  • Facilitators of hiking events or excursions

As an owner of a hiking business or guide, you deserve peace of mind. The right insurance coverage can help protect you from financial losses resulting from liability claims.


Why should I purchase hiking/backpacking insurance?Friends day hiking in countryside

While hiking and backpacking businesses might not be legally required to carry certain types of insurance, operating without it is risky and could lead to devastating financial consequences. 

Though you might feel like you don’t need hiking insurance, can you afford not to have it? Would your business go under if you had to pay tens of thousands of dollars out of pocket? Would you be willing to pay the costs from your personal savings? 

For example, if a rattlesnake bit a participant during a hike, would you want to be on the hook for their medical bills and potential liability claims? Insurance can help protect your business from these unexpected costs.


What does hiking/backpacking insurance cover?

A hiking insurance policy through Sadler can cover you in many different scenarios, including lawsuits and other unexpected events. When choosing any sports insurance, you want to purchase a policy that includes coverage for:

  • General liability: General liability insurance covers risks related to bodily injury, property damage, and legal defense costs brought against your business by injured participants and other third parties.
  • Medical expenses: Accident coverage helps pay the costs of medical treatment of participants. This includes emergency room visits, surgery, follow-up appointments, and prescriptions.


Why Sadler?

When you work with Sadler & Company, you receive access to best in industry coverage for hundreds of different sports and recreation insurance policies. Best of all, our policies are highly customizable, so we can design a plan that works for your specific needs.

But wait, there’s more:

  • Easy, hassle-free online quote 
  • No need to join a professional organization
  • Average savings of 38% 

Hit the trails with added peace of mind and start protecting your hiking business today with Sadler & Company.