During your life, you may need to spend a night in the wilderness. If you are a camper, you may actually do so more than once. Spending a night in the wilderness can be a huge hassle if you are not well prepared. On the other hand, if you are well prepared, you may be able to spend the night a lot more comfortably.
A vital part of being prepared is to have the right tools at hand. Following are some important essentials you must have if you are planning to spend a night out in the dark.
Knife is the most fundamental tool if you are going to spend some time in the wilderness. It is incredibly versatile and you may realize this once you out in the open. When finding the right knife to pack in your gear, you may need to choose between folding knives and fixed blade knives.
Both have their advantages and drawbacks. A folding knife is safer for storage and more compact but it is not as durable or effective in cutting. A fixed blade knife, on the other hand, is better for cutting branches or other objects, and is generally more resilient. You can use a knife to open tins, create fire, cut cloth or rope, as well as utilize it for a range of other tasks.
Naturally, it is incredibly important to have a supply of water when you are out in the wilderness. This is particularly true for nightly excursions because you may not be able to spot any water bodies in the dark even if they are located nearby. Your water ration should depend on the length of your excursion. If you are going out in the night only for a few hours, or until dawn, you should water enough water to see you through. Also remember that you may need water for purposes other than drinking, such as washing or drenching any items.
Night Vision Devices
These devices literally let you see in the dark. The clarity of the view depends upon the type of device you are using. If you use night vision goggles, they will amplify the ambient light and let you see objects in the dark more clearly. If you are using a thermal device, it will give you a heat map of live objects such as animals. If you are night in the wilderness is a hunting excursion, these devices will be immensely helpful. You may even go with night vision scopes that can fit with a rifle and give you a clear view when shooting.
Flashlight serves a wide range of purposes when you are in the wilderness. During night time, you can simply use it to see you path more clearly and get a peek at the landscape around you. Another excellent use of a flashlight is that it can be used for signaling. If you are in the wilderness with one or more people, you may use flashlight signaling to keep track of each other. Alternatively, if you run into some trouble, you may use the light to flash a stress signal to other people or towards any planes in the sky.
Unexpected things happen in the wilderness. So no matter how you plan a nightly excursion, it’s always prudent to keep some important things as a backup. One of these things is a cord. A cord is as versatile as a knife. You can use a cord to build shelter, lash up poles, climb up or down a steep area, or use it creatively for hunting. If you run into any unfortunate incident, such as an injury, a cord can be effectively used to make splint for broken bones.
When a choosing a cord, preferably go with a parachute cord. This particular type of cord is rather flexible and is incredibly light-weight.
If you are going to go out in the night, make sure you are dressed up for the occasion. Even in summers, nights can get cold in many areas. Warm clothes may not seem like an essential but it is immensely important. If you are cold in the wilderness, your body heat will be drained in trying to keep you warm. At the same time, your thinking and decision-making powers may also diminish because of the cold. If you are dressed warmly enough, you will stay active, alert and focused.
If you are going into an unknown portion of the wilderness, a map is always handy. Whether it is a digital map or a paper map, it is going to be immensely helpful in case you get lost. If you lose your bearings, you can use a map and the North Star, or a compass if you have one, to know where you are. Look around for any landmarks or signs and if that does not help, simply determine the direction in which you want to go and start walking that way. That should get you back to safety.
If you are going to sleep out in the open, you are going to need shelter material. This can be as simple as tarp or as specialized as a sleeping bag. Even if you don’t plan on sleeping in the wilderness, it is a good idea to keep shelter material on hand. You may use it to rest, to stay warm and get some sleep in case of some unplanned eventuality.
First-aid kits are a great help for all sort of injuries, ranging from simple scratches to bone cracks. A quality first-aid kit should include bandages, gloves, wound-cleaning liquid, gauze and other small items. Although a simple item, first-aid kits are incredibly important. Even a small scratch or wound may make you uncomfortable when out in the wilderness and it may get infected. Treating it timely with a first-aid kit will check the injury and keep it under control until you can get professional medical help.
Guest Author – Ryan Harris from cleverhunters.com.
*Featured photo courtesy of Pixabay