For many people, traveling is much more than visiting the most popular tourist destinations to take a picture and spend the whole trip in a comfy 5-star hotel. Those who enjoy exploring the great outdoors and love the adrenaline rush often choose remote locations instead. And even though these days, getting stranded in the wilderness isn’t as likely as it might have been in the times before smartphones, it’s always better to stay prepared.
Nature is truly powerful, and no matter how much you love it, you should never underestimate it. The conditions can change at any minute, and should you find yourself in a potentially dangerous situation, you can mitigate the risk of getting lost or injured by taking the right equipment and learning the necessary skills.
While there’s no need to take a 22lr scope rifle on every hike or trip (unless you’re a hunter, of course), there are a few things you should remember about. They range from the right clothing that will protect you from the elements to navigation tools as well as everything that’s needed to start a fire. Below, we provide more details on each.
Whether you’re exploring remote and extremely secluded areas or staying close to popular hiking trails, you should always be prepared for all eventualities. You can get lost and confused in virtually any place, and no rules say that you surely will be able to find your way back without any way to check where exactly you should be heading.
The crucial part of getting yourself out of trouble in such a situation is knowing how to navigate your way back to civilization. Even though today we have navigation tools like smartphones and GPS trackers, it’s still a good idea to know how to read a map and use a compass properly.
If you aren’t familiar with these tools, then you should spend some time with tutorials or even ask someone more experienced to give you a few lessons before heading deep into the wilderness. Instead of relying solely on technology, make sure that you’ve got some “old-fashioned” tools with you and take time to learn how to use them properly.
No matter where you are and how good the weather is, you shouldn’t take it for granted. In fact, one of the worst things you could do when heading out on an adventure is to leave without taking the right clothing. Underestimating the power of nature and the elements can quickly lead to life-threatening situations, so make sure that you’re prepared.
For example, if you’re hiking in warm weather, you should wear loose and breathable clothing. Opt for colors such as white, tan, or khaki – you won’t be as hot in them as if you wore black. Don’t forget to wear a hat or any type of head covering, sturdy shoes, and sunglasses, and put on plenty of sunscreen to protect your skin (not only when it’s hot!).
On the other hand, if you’re planning to travel to a colder climate, then it’s essential to wear multiple layers of clothing that will help you stay warm and dry. You can put on thermal underwear, merino wool socks, insulated shoes, and ditch cotton clothing for softshell pants and layers of clothing made from synthetic materials like polyester blends or natural fibers like wool and silk.
Lighting A Fire
One of the most useful survival skills is knowing how to start a fire, especially if you like to spend the night outdoors or go on multiple-day trips. Even in summer, you can get chilly at night, and having a fire is the best way to keep yourself warm and scare away any predators. It will also allow you to be more visible if you ever need to get help in the wild.
To get a fire going in the wilderness, you will need to take a few things with you. Make sure that you have a heavy-duty lighter, matches, or even fire steel. This will make the whole process of starting a fire a lot less stressful and time-consuming.
You have to start with some dry bark. Once you have the initial flame, you can start adding small branches and then heavier logs.
The most important thing about building a fire is making sure that you do it in a safe place; you don’t want to start a fire that will take the whole forest, so make sure that you’re building it on a flat surface that’s far away from any plants or trees.
First Aid Kit
Last but not least, it’s essential to have a first aid kit at all times and especially when you’re traveling to remote areas. Plenty of accidents can happen while hiking, exploring, or doing whatever activity you enjoy.
From minor cuts and bruises to broken bones and injuries caused by a fall or stumbling on a branch, there are plenty of situations where a good first aid kit could be a lifesaver. It’s not enough to just buy one, though.
You should take time to learn how to use it properly and become familiar with what’s inside. You can also add some more supplies like the medication you take regularly, water-purifying tablets, disposable gloves, and scissors to your pack. This way, you will be prepared for everything.
As you can see, it would be an understatement to say that being prepared is essential for any kind of travel. There are many things that can go wrong when you’re exploring what’s hiding off the beaten track, but you can mitigate the majority of potential risks by getting the right equipment and ensuring you know how to use them.
Whether you’re planning a short trip or you’re going deep into the wilderness, safety is always the first priority. So, the next time you head out on an adventure, make sure that you have the proper clothing with you. You should also carry the right tools to navigate your way, be prepared to light a fire, and have a well-equipped first aid kit on hand. This way, you’ll be ready for whatever life and Mother Nature throw at you!