If you’ve ever longed for a chance to escape from the hustle and bustle of civilization, experience the wonders of nature, and live off the land for a while, then you know how exhilarating that kind of adventure can be. But with such an adventure comes some risk; how do you ensure you make it back in one piece?
Whether you’re planning an adventurous day trip or a multi-day trek in the great outdoors, the potential to get lost or stranded in a remote area is very real. To return alive and kicking, you must be well-prepared and knowledgeable about using your skills and equipment to survive. That begins with understanding how to read the terrain, find water sources, construct shelters, and signal for help. Let’s look at all these points in a broader scope.
Research the area you are going to
Before heading out on a journey, take the time to research the area you’ll be traveling through. Looking up the most up-to-date information on trail closures, weather conditions, and potential hazards is essential. You should also read up on any local laws on navigation and safety.
Put these in your backpack
Having the right equipment is critical for any wilderness journey. Your backpack should include items necessary for navigation, food, shelter and clothing, water purification, signaling devices, and emergency supplies such as a first aid kit, knife, fire-starting tools, and compass.
While safety is above anything, don’t forget to have fun and document the trip! Use your smartphone camera to take a bunch of snaps and record videos! Once you’re back home, use VistaCreate to add music to photo online free or create an animation based on your pictures to make your adventure unforgettable!
Knowing how to use a map and compass is essential for successful navigation in the wilderness. Learn to read a topographic map and locate yourself within it by looking for landmarks. You should also get familiar with compass navigation basics to determine direction without a map.
Setting up a shelter quickly and safely
In the case of an emergency, it is crucial to know how to set up a shelter quickly and safely. Ideally, you will have a waterproof tarp or tent for protection. In a pinch, however, you can create a makeshift shelter using available trees, rocks, and other materials. To protect yourself from wildlife or environmental hazards, build your haven away from water sources and trail intersections.
How to stay warm and dry during a storm
Knowing how to keep yourself dry and warm when caught in the rain is key to avoiding hypothermia and other medical emergencies. Wear clothes made of materials that keep water out, such as Gore-Tex or nylon. Do not stay in wet clothes for too long, as this will increase the risk of hypothermia. If possible, build a fire near your shelter for additional warmth.
The most important rule regarding water is that you must always have enough of it. Carry more than you think you need to account for any unexpected delays or detours during your journey. If possible, try to find natural water sources along the way so you don’t have to carry all that weight alone. Purifying water that has not come directly from a reliable source can be a life-saving factor.
You can do it using a portable filter or tablets or boiling the water over a fire. Boiling is the most reliable method but requires more time and energy than the other methods. Whichever method you choose, make sure to do it correctly to avoid any waterborne illnesses.
What to take with you in terms of food
It is necessary to carry enough food for the duration of your journey, as well as some extra for unexpected delays or detours. When choosing what food to take with you, look for lightweight, non-perishable items that provide long-lasting energy and essential nutrients.
Foraging for food in the wilderness and how to do it properly
Foraging for wild food is a great way to supplement your meals in the wilderness. Get familiar with the edible plants and mushrooms in the area and learn how to identify them correctly to avoid poison ivy or other toxic plants.
Starting a fire in the wilderness can be difficult if you don’t have the proper equipment or knowledge. Learn how to start a fire in all weather conditions and with whatever fuel is available, such as wood, paper, or dry grass. Make sure you have a fire-starting tool like matches or a lighter on you at all times in case of an emergency. Try to gather as much fuel as possible to ensure it keeps burning. Store it close to the fire in a dry area and keep it away from children or animals.
Signaling for Help
If you find yourself in an emergency, it is essential to signal for help. Carry a whistle with you if you need to make loud noises that can be heard over long distances. You can also use natural features such as smoke and rocks or trees to create signals that can be seen further away.
For all the adventurers out there, we hope this article has given you valuable tips and tricks for surviving in the wild and returning to civilization safe and sound. No matter how daunting nature can seem, it can still be an incredible and rewarding experience. So go ahead, lace up your boots, dust off your compass, and explore the majestic outdoors!