When we think of the great outdoors, we may picture hiking, camping, boating, hunting or other pursuit we are passionate about. We consider ourselves versed in the supplies that are appropriate for whatever activity we enjoy outdoors. But the worst case scenario is not often considered. After all, you’re well prepared for your camping trip – tent, cooler, sleeping bags, food and refreshments, check. What could possibly go wrong?
Well, there are many things that can go wrong, and unfortunately many people do not have the mindset to prepare for all of these less than desirable possibilities.
No one plans to slip and fall down a steep, rocky trail. But it happens. One missed step could result in a sever injury, broken bones, and even life threatening blood loss. The great outdoors is just that – great. Trekking through unknown landscapes can and has resulted in people getting lost. While it may not be a big deal if you are in an area where civilization is not too far away regardless of which way you go, there are situations where your very survival could be at stake. There are an abundance of scenarios which could turn an ordinary activity into a critical situation. Things to consider in the interest of being prepared:
- A two-way radio to contact help.
- Survival blanket (hypothermia is a real danger depending on the season, the location, and length of time before help can be summoned).
- A compass (people can get disoriented and lost even in familiar terrain).
- Means to start a fire (for warmth, cooking, signaling - waterproof matches, lighters, flint & steel are essential survival tools to have on hand).
- Means to purify water (many available products such as a LifeStraw water filter should always accompany you or your party when leaving base camp).
- A compact tourniquet and blood clotting agent (should be part of every first-aid kit, which should be carried by at least one individual in the party).
- Paracord (with countless uses from fashioning a makeshift sling to securing an improvised shelter, paracord is light but strong and should always be along for the adventure).
- A multi-function tool or pocket knife. A larger, more capable blade is also a good idea.
- A flashlight (either rechargeable via mobile phone battery chargers, hand crank, or with several appropriate sized replacement batteries).
- Several fully charged battery backups for mobile phones (and USB cords).
- Medications, if required, by anyone involved in the activity.
Everything mentioned here could easily be stowed in an average-sized backpack with plenty of room to spare for other items. This list is by no means comprehensive, and it might be tailored to your specific activity, but it’s better to be safe than sorry, as the saying goes. At Metro Pawn & Gun, we encourage you to enjoy the outdoors, safely!
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