As far as outdoor recreational activities go, hiking is considered to be the easiest of them all. You don’t need to have exceptional skills, almost anyone can do it, which is why we are led to think nothing can go wrong when hiking. However, it’s not always the extreme skier that gets lost or injured. Out in the wild, there are many different factors at play that can put you in the state of fighting for your survival. With that being said, bringing along a well-stocked emergency kit is essential. Here are some must-have pieces of survival gear that are compact and lightweight enough to not weigh you down on the trail.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re hiking on a warm day in July, up in the mountains nights can get exceptionally cold. With that being said, a survival blanket should be an essential addition in your survival kit. Also called a space blanket, it’s made of a type of foil designed by NASA that can warm you up more quickly than any other kind of blanket or layer. However, a survival blanket can also provide you with more benefits than just staying warm. The fact that it is waterproof means you can also use it as a raincoat or a tarp should it rain or snow. Additionally, the same design that keeps you warm can also help you reflect heat if the sun is too harsh. Lightweight and versatile, the survival blanket is a valuable piece of gear to bring along.
Some people think a pocket knife is the only tool you need to bring along. However, it’s better to carry something you don’t need than to need something you don’t have. Compact and lightweight, a multi-tool combines several gadgets which might come in handy in a survival situation. There are many kinds of multi-tools, but the “Leatherman” is definitely the most common one used. It typically features the most common knife options along with scissors, screwdrivers, pokers, a small saw, can and bottle openers, and in some cases even a fire-starting ferro rod. The clever design results in a variety of tools that only weigh 141-283 grams.
Whether you’ve cut yourself bush-walking or have an allergic reaction, a small first aid kit can help you overcome these issues and much more. The typical first aid kit should consist of pain medication such as aspirin and ibuprofen, wound clearing solutions, alcohol and antihistamine. You should also have some medical tape, gauze pads, bandages. If you have an underlying condition or are allergic to something like bee stings, make sure to bring along suitable medication.
The human body can survive days without food, but only 100 hours without water at an average temperature outdoors. So, it goes without saying that should you get lost or stranded in the wild, an extra pack of food won’t be as useful as having clean water to drink. The most common solution is a water filter that can be screwed onto a water bottle to clean up sand and debris. You should also pack some iodine or chlorine tablets that dissolve in the water to make it safe to drink. But these solutions only work as long as there’s water along the trail or rain. If you’re hiking in a dry and drought-prone location, you may want to bring along reserves of drinking water with you.