Scorpions, spiders, centipedes, and other venomous creatures may consider your unattended boots, gloves, or other garments as a fine new home, especially if they have been undisturbed for a few hours. Then guess what happens when you suddenly pick these items up and put them on? The animal gets pressed against your skin and it bites or stings you. The venom can range from mild to intense, depending on the creature that you’ve disturbed and its size. Take scorpions as an example. With more than a thousand known scorpion species in the world, there are plenty we’ll encounter in our travels. Mercifully, there are only 25 known to carry venom that would kill a human. From that group, there’s just one that lives in the continental US. It’s the Arizona bark scorpion (Centruroides sculpturatus) and its venom is on the low end of the spectrum (fatalities are very rare, usually occurring in small children and those with health problems). So how do we avoid the sting or bite? Don’t leave your clothing, gloves or footwear on the ground or outside overnight. Don’t hang your jacket on a tree. Don’t give them a chance to crawl into your open backpack. Gear that’s not being worn should be put away, closed up or otherwise moved out of the creature’s reach. Yes, it’s a pain, but it’s less painful than getting bitten or stung.