How To Survive In The Wilderness
It seems that after every long weekend , we are reminded by the media , once again , of some unfortunate individual or group of individuals that has succumbed to the trials and tribulations of Mother Nature . Once again , an unprepared effort with costly results .
Be prepared !
This motto has been serving mankind since our early beginnings . Being prepared , means having a plan , knowing where you’re going and even more important – knowing your limitations !
We don’t go to school , work or play without some type of planning and preparation , so why should we want to venture into the ” wilds of nature “ – unprepared !
- At this level , your first concern should be to illicit the company of experienced and like-minded friends or acquaintances to bring along , on your wilderness adventure .
- Tell someone where you are going , the route you will be taking and when you expect to return .
- Your trip should match your skill-set and abilities to fend for yourself should something go wrong .
The Basic Kit
- A backpack … this should be comfortable and able to carry a small list of items that are mandatory to any adventure in the wilderness . Seasoned wilderness enthusiasts carry these so why would you not want to do the same .
- A Map and Compass … the map will show you ‘ the lay of the land ‘ , the mountains , the valleys , the rivers and the creeks . This will help you decide if this terrain is within your capabilities . Someone in your group should be able to use a compass . Electronic devices should not be the novice’s primary form of navigational security unless you can read a compass and can remember to carry batteries and operate the unit that you’re carrying .
- Clothing … this means extra clothing other than what you are wearing . Dress for the season . If you are travelling in the mountains , remember that you can experience all 4 seasons in the same day .
- Water/Food/Snacks …these are the fuel of the human body . Wilderness activities burn a lot of calories and water is even more important . Your map can help you locate water sources and planning your route around these is certainly a smart idea .
- Shelter … carry a poncho or small tarp to provide shelter should you need protection from the elements .
- Fire … carry matches or a lighter . A fire will keep you warm and serves as a great psychological boost when forced to spent the night in the wilderness .
- A Knife … a knife has many uses including building your shelter and starting your fire .
- Mirror and Whistle … these signalling devices are a must to attract attention should you become lost . The mirror should be unbreakable and the whistle made of plastic .
- First Aid Kit … a small first aid kit speaks for itself . Learn how to use it by taking a First Aid course . This course will leave you more confident of your abilities to fend for yourself and the members of your group .
Preparation and knowledge will serve you well as you venture into the wilderness . This knowledge will help you gain confidence in your skills and make your trips safer and more enjoyable . This will be reflected to your friends and group members .
This article is not intended for you to fear the wilderness but rather to help you gain respect for Mother Nature and her awesome power .
The beauty of the natural world is yours to enjoy and it would be unfortunate for you to miss out on it .
Enjoy it with your friends , and return here with your comments and stories to inspire us all . These experiences will have you craving for more of this wonderful world .