Even seasoned hikers are prone to accidents. Emergency planning is an integral part of planning for any extended hike, so we thought we’d highlight some important items to bring with you for safety while you’re on the trail.
Whether it is planning for a broken leg or getting lost—it is important to account for any scenario. So here are 3 must-have items to bring with you on your trek. Please make sure you know what to do with each item. Even if you have what you need, you also have to know how to use it properly!
A mirror seems like a weird thing to bring with you on the trail, but it is actually one of the most important survival items we have at our disposal. In the case of emergency, most search parties will be sent help from the air. However, foliage can make you difficult to spot. With a mirror, you can reflect sunlight or searchlights to signal for help. The signal for SOS is three short flashes, three long flashes, three short flashes. You can also use a mirror to start a fire.
While food is important, water is the key to survival. Humans can only survive for three days without water. Therefore, it is always important to bring extra water. It is recommended you drink two liters of water daily when you are not hiking, but you should drink about a half a liter for every hour you are. If you are on an extended hike, we recommend you bring an extra two liters in case of emergency—it is worth carrying the extra weight. You can also bring Iodine tablets to purify water from a stream.
Making a fire is one of the most important things to do first in case of an emergency. For one, the smoke and flames will alert anyone in the air or the immediate area to your presence. And of course, it is important to stay warm at night and keep predators away. If you are in an emergency situation, you should not move location! It is important to stay where you are. Today, you can buy wind- and water-proof lighters and fire starters that can save lives.