3 Reasons Why You Need a GPS in Your Bug-out Bag

Intro

Usually, it would be instinctive to stay away from electronic gadgets when you are choosing gears to bug-out or to simply travel in the wilderness. However, handheld GPS receivers can be considered as one such exception. The amount of benefits that you can derive from this wonderful modern gadget would outweigh the cons of holding such a device. The other must-have item would be a boot knife to keep yourself safe.

Handheld GPS receivers can be considered to be rather complex, where there is a huge variety for you to choose from. Some important aspects that you can consider include the display quality in   weather conditions, user-friendly interface and the amount of storage it has. Before going too far with the considerations for a good GPS, here are three reasons why you need a GPS in your bug-out bag.

3-reasons-why-you-need-a-GPS-in-your-bug-out-bag

Reason 1: Ensuring your safety outside cellphone coverage

By just having a GPS, you are already significantly increasing your chances of survival outdoors. A GPS with its basic function can provide you information about where you are, by letting you know your position, orientation and which intended direction you should take. Losing one of these positioning factors would be detrimental because it would potentially cause one of the other factors to tumble.

Equipping your handheld GPS receiver with navigational aids would be necessary if you want to send your coordinates to rescuers when you are in a place outside cell-phone coverage. Your GPS would only be radio signal receivers that contains a logic chip which is good for telling your location, but would be incapable of transmitting signals.

Therefore, you may want to get a GPS which contains an attachment to a cell phone or use it together with other transmission methods. The transmitters that you may want to look into are personal locator beacons and satellite messengers.

Note that personal locator beacons are used only when one is in really bad emergency situations. Personal locator beacons utilize the Distress Alerting Satellite System (DASS) which are monitored by NASA to track distress signals.

Usually, we would just use satellite messengers which is also a navigational aid which helps tell our rescuers the location we are at, even when there is no cellphone coverage. When you are bugging out and when SHTF, having these functions at your fingertips can do you wonders.

 

Reason 2: Understand your surroundings

Also, to facilitate the process of understanding your surroundings, you may want to employ ‘scouting’. This can be said to be like your ‘homework’ before you travel outdoors or go to the location you want. First, you would start by scouting with your computer, where you can go through topographical or 3D maps so that you have a rough overview of the terrain. After that, mark those places that particularly interest you or the route which you intend to travel.

The next step would be transferring those marked waypoints into your GPS, where these waypoints are really helpful when you scout on foot. This can act as an alternative navigation method where you can just follow the waypoints which you saved which simplifies how you navigate.

Planning your outdoor trips is really important if you want to cover more ground in less time. The act of scouting and saving waypoints could save you a ton of time if you do it right. Remember, you would want to look for a GPS that can insert an external SD card as well so that you do not need to worry about memory.

 

Reason 3: Navigate with ease

By having topographical maps saved in your GPS, you do not need to weigh yourself down with loads of maps when you are outdoors. With a GPS with sufficient storage capacity, you can save many maps and waypoints that are necessary for your outdoor adventure. This would be important when you bug-out because you would not know how long more you would need to travel!

Handheld GPS receivers are also equipped with different navigation methods, and I would encourage you to experiment with them to determine the most convenient way to navigate. For example, you can choose to navigate by touching on the place of the screen or simply following waypoints.

Usually, I would prefer to navigate by touching on the screen only to find out new places. While I am on foot, travelling would be much easier when I just follow waypoints. An external antenna would be a useful feature to look out for so that you can be sure that you have good signal even when you are in canyons or thick foliage.

 

Conclusion

Ideally, your bug out bag should have predetermined emergency essentials, so you can be ready for any eventualities at any time. One important aspect is that the gears you carry must be light enough especially when your bug-out location is far from your current location. Another thing to note is the durability of the items you are holding. If you foresee yourself going through rough terrains, you may want to choose a waterproof GPS.

Other options would be considering a GPS that you can primarily navigate through the software using external buttons rather than using touch screen. This is because touch screen GPS would usually be more prone to spoil. If you have any other tips to share, please comment below!

Author Bio:

I am John Lewis, a blogger, survivalist and outdoor enthusiast. You can follow me over at Epic Wilderness. Please click here!

5 Tips for Ultralight Camping | Must-know Tips for Backpackers

The more weight you can cut from your pack, the faster you move, and the more comfortable your camping experience will be. However, switching to lighter setup can cost an arm and a leg. So here are 5 tips for ultralight camping that can shave weight from your pack without making it too costly.

1. Minimize The Stove

Food is one of the easiest things to over pack. It is thus necessary to lay out your foods in a strategic way. And the first thing to notice is the stove.

The most ideal option is just to leave the stove at home and eat cold foods instead. Oatmeal, nuts, cereal, dried fruits, sandwiches are good choices.

And before you start your trip, list out the foods you will need for each day to make sure that you will not bring too much of the unnecessary.

In case you are not ready to leave the fire behind, you can make a mini alcohol stove from a soda can. This stove can also keep you warm and cook some simple dishes.

2. Use Multi-purpose Items

There are many items that can be used for more than one purpose. For examples, you can use your stuff sack as a pillow cover, cooking pot as a bowl, or sleeping bag as a makeshift stretcher.

Besides the shift toward using multiple-purpose items, it is also weight-saving to cut off the non-essentials. Coffee mug and wine cup are the examples. And after each trip, you can eliminate the items with less frequency or with no actual use.

That said, first aids and emergency kits should never be put on the elimination list.

3. Go Lightweight On The Big Three

The three keywords are the tent, sleeping bag, and backpack. For most campers, they always make up for most of the base weight.

– Tent: There are two factors when it comes to using tents – the number of people and weather. If you go solo, a one-man tent is just a perfect fit. And if you have a companion, two-person tents may weight around 2-3 pounds depending on its design and materials.

Depending on whether it is warm or rainy, you can also opt for the suitable tent to minimize the pack weight.

– Sleeping bag: It is ideal to keep the sleeping bag under 3 pounds and the sleeping pad around 1 pound. These numbers are also flexible depending on weather condition.

– Backpack: People usually forget that even an empty pack weights something. So the tip here is that you should go for packs with smaller loads. It forces you to carry less but just the essentials.

 

4. Select Smart Materials

Titanium and synthetic layers are two great option for the materials. Before deciding to include anything in your pack, make sure it is lightweight, easy to clean and dry.

Using backpacking solar charger is also a smart choice. It frees you from having to worry about finding electricity when you want to charge your stuff.

5. Put Everything On A Scale

Weight is everything. There is two way to do this. You can either put your pack on a scale or make a spreadsheet listing out all items’ weights to see if your pack is lightweight enough.

You can group your items into different categories such as Shelter, Sleeping, Foods, and Clothes. This spreadsheet may take you quite a while to complete, yet it is definitely worth your time and effort.

It helps a lot in deciding whether anything else can be eliminated for a lighter pack. Choosing the items for your pack is like choosing the players in a football game. There are always limited spots in the team and as a coach, you need a make ruthless decision when picking which players to cut and which to add.

The Bottom Line

Your love for camping will be put off by the aches after carrying a heavy pack on your back for hours. The ultralight pack is then crucial to boosting your comfort and camping experience.

So here are the key takeaways for a lighter camping setup: Plan your foods strategically, take advantage of multiple-use gears, minimize the weight of the tent, sleeping bag, backpack, scrutinize on the items, and eliminate the nonessentials.

I hope these 5 tips for ultralight camping are useful for your campaign prep work. Thank you so much for reading.

Author Bio:

Luna is a camping and hiking enthusiast from Phoenix, Arizona. She wants to share her experience to all adventure junkies in order for them to get better preparations before any trip.  Visit her blog to find out more!

The Best Way to Purchase Outdoor Gear

For many people not used to purchasing outdoor gear, it can be quite overwhelming finding the best equipment and the best deals available in the market. You surely do not want to fall into the trap of buying gear that is too expensive only to find better quality at a better price sold somewhere else; This is why you need to know some of the best ways to get an outdoor gear with minimal risks.

Here are a few of the best ways of purchasing an outdoor gear.  

1. Shop online for Best deals  

With the internet available and readily available, shopping for gears should be effortless. You can find all the outdoor gears nowadays and even exclusive discounts at online shops. Sites like Amazon and eBay have a wide range of shops selling all kinds of equipment for winter and summer seasons, and all you need is an internet connection to search for them.

2. Shop End-of-Season Sales for Winter Gear

At the end of winter season, most skin shops close and open up camps for summer activities such as bicycle riding. It is the perfect time for you to shop for winter gears like skies, snowboards and others from these shops as they will try to get rid of these items and will end up selling them at very low prices to get rid of the bulky items. A great way of having a good deal with the shops is getting to know the employees or owners, and this can save you a lot of money.  

3. Purchase used Rental Gear

If you are interested in finding serviceable and reliable gear, you do not have to buy the latest equipment on the market. Of course, the latest gear will be a little more expensive, but you can visit gear rental shops where you can find items that the shops are trying to sell at the end of the rental season. These items you will find them at very low prices. However, it is crucial that you perform a thorough check on the gear before purchasing them.  

4. Ask your friend to accompany you to the shop

It is a good idea to have someone with you when going to purchase outdoor gear especially if it is your first time. Your friend might have a better idea that will help you a long way into your purchase. Also if you have a friend who works at gear shops, they will be able to help you and advise you on the different type of gears accordingly. Some shops also offer special deals to their employees’ friends and family.  

5. Get a Job at an Outdoor Shop

Getting a job at an outdoor shop will help you get exclusive discounts from the shop. It will work great for you especially if you are passionate about the outdoor gears. Many shops have great offers for their employees, and most people fill up their garages efficiently using these offers.  

The best way to purchase outdoor gears is being patient and checking out for the best offers in the market. If you are planning to make a trip, then it is best that you plan earlier and get the gear early enough before the trip. Using the above tips, you should be able to secure great deals from outdoor shops and also online shops that will save you some cash, and you will even get quality gears at the same time.

5 Survival Tips For Camping Novices

Camping is a fun, relaxing and memorable outdoor adventure. Connecting with Mother Nature, hiking and watching the stars at night while sitting by the campfire, is simply therapeutic. For inexperienced campers, however, leaving the comfort of your house to sleep outside in a sleeping bag can seem scary and intimidating. With adequate preparation and a few expert tips, you can achieve the perfect camping experience and enjoy your outdoor break to the fullest.

 

Let’s look at 5 survival tips for camping novices.

  1. Choose Your Campsite Wisely

If you are new to camping, it is important to choose your campsite wisely. Your campsite will greatly determine how much you will enjoy your camping experience. Identify a location that is safe, warm and dry. Nothing feels worse than discovering that the campsite you chose flooded due to heavy rain and the facilities available are wanting. Ask for recommendations from family and friends on sites that are novice friendly.

  1. Make A Checklist

Before you set off on your camping expedition, it is important to make a camping essentials checklist to help you gather everything and stay organized. Use your checklist to pack and tick off everything that gets into your bag. A checklist will ensure that nothing gets left behind. Start packing early in advance and update your checklist if needed to ensure you carry everything.

  1. Pack The Right Gear

The right camping gear is of utmost importance to a new camper. Pack light but ensure you bring along the most important pieces needed for your camping trip. Carry warm clothing for the night. The weather could change drastically for the worst. It is also important to familiarize yourself with the gear before you go camping. Practice how to set up your camping tent in your backyard. Check if your sleeping bag fits just right. These important steps will help you survive and enjoy your first camping trip.

  1. Buy A Big Enough Tent

If you want to be comfortable during your camping adventure then buy a bigger tent than what you actually need. Sleeping in a crowded tent with limited space will leave you cranky and drain your enthusiasm. Ideally, you should carry a head height tent that allows you to comfortably stand up inside it. Most tents are foldable and can easily fit in the trunk of your car.

  1. Carry Your Own Portable Toilet

As a camping novice, having to run to the nearby woods every time the need to use a toilet arises can be stressful. That is why it is important to purchase your own portable toilet before leaving for the camp. Portable toilets are relatively inexpensive and hygienic. The new models are exceptionally light yet they are as good as your home toilet. Having a portable toilet will also prevent hygiene and sanitation problems that could arise from contamination from human waste.

Conclusion

I do hope that these 5 survival tips for camping novices will help you make your first camping trip enjoyable and memorable. Need to purchase a camping toilet? Home Worthy List has reviewed the best portable and camping toilets for 2018 on this page . Check out this comprehensive review and find the camping toilet you are looking for.

 

5 Tips To Learning About Outdoor Sports

Outdoor sports are not everyone’s cup of tea, most people prefer other sports. Learning a sport may be a little difficult because most people do not engage in them regularly. However, there are easy and fun ways you can learn about sports;

 

  1.       Look out for outdoor sport events near your area

Nowadays, lots of outdoor sport events are held, mostly in sports clubs, ranches, etc. The easiest way to find out about such events is through the internet, mostly social media platforms. This can be a great way to learn about these kind of sports especially because you will participate and a lot of people attend these kind of events. What’s more, there are usually multiple sports taking place with competition and this makes it even more fun.

 

  1.       Try enclosed outdoor sports first

Hiking, rock climbing, skydiving and the other outdoor sports don’t sound fun to some people. So, instead of going for the actual rock climbing -or any of the outdoor sports- try indoor rock climbing first. Although it may not provide the same experience as the actual rock climbing, it may just ignite the interest you never knew you had. Also, it is a fun and easier way to learn about the actual outdoor sports.

 

  1.       Visit an outdoor gear store

Most of these store owners are professionals so, this way you learn about both the sport and gear from an expert. Also, you may have wanted to get gear for an outdoor activity you are interested in, for example hunting. You learn about the gear you want in depth and specificity for instance; the best rifle for squirrel hunting or the best bow for deer hunting, etc.

  1.       Suggest outdoor sports to your friends

Instead of you and your friends going out next time, suggest that you go for a forest hike or for biking. It is even a lot more fun when with friends than strangers and the more you take part in them, the more you learn about them. Also, don’t go for the same sports every time, try different ones. As long as your friends are for it, you will actually want to engage in them as compared to when you are alone.

 

  1.       Browse the internet

When trying to learn, you can never go wrong with the internet. Even though participating may be an excellent way to learn about outdoor sports, you don’t have to go that way. You can browse the internet and get all the information you require about a particular outdoor sport. You even get to know about the best places and terrains to go for the sports and the safety measures and precautions to take. Afterward, you can engage in the sport whenever you have free time.

Outdoor sports can be hectic if not well prepared for. Preparation is not only physically, but also mentally. So, if you intent to fully engage in these kind of sports then prepare well and don’t forget to get in condition.

The Top 3 Pros and Cons to Using a Crossbow Versus a Compound Bow

Hunters and people who love the game of archery will need a bow, obviously. The question in their head as they shop may be which one would suit them best. Is it the crossbow or the compound bow?

Archery sport helps players develop various qualities within them. For instance, since you will learn to shoot at multiple targets, you will need to have some level of focus. Therefore, these people are keen when they perform other tasks.

Today we will analyze different pros, cons of the crossbow, and the compound bow.

 

Crossbow

 

This modern bow works precisely as a rifle. It consists of distinct features that make it stand out and increase its power. The hunter will hold it in a horizontal position when aiming at specific targets.

 

Pros for using a crossbow

 

  1. Ease of use

 

Hunters love a tool that is quick in function. One benefit that the crossbow features is that you do not need hours to practice shooting at a target.

 

As mentioned earlier, it works exactly like a rifle; therefore, you only need to press the trigger to release the arrow. People with disabilities can use the bow since you do not require both hands necessarily.

 

  1. Power

 

Once you release the trigger, the shaft moves at lightning speed. Within a few milliseconds, the arrow can dig deep into the target’s surface or animal skin. The user has to use a lot of force to remove the arrow from the surface that it strikes.

 

  1. Accuracy

 

The bow has a scope fitted at the top for the user to aim the target with. This means that you do not spend a lot of time trying to point at the game or prey. The scope also assists when the light conditions are poor. For this reason, many people rely on this tool, especially when hunting.

 

Cons of the Crossbow

 

  1. The bow is heavy. It becomes a problem when you have to carry it for longer distances.
  2. The bow releases some noise once you press the trigger, which distracts preys if you are aiming at more than one.

 

  1. Some states limit the use of crossbows. Users need to check with their state laws to see if they need to acquire a license to use one within the state boundaries.

 

Compound Bows

 

This is also a modern bow. The user will hold it in a vertical position when aiming at a target. You will also need to pull the string to release the arrow, unlike the crossbow where you just press the trigger.

 

Pros of the Compound Bow

 

  1. It is ideal for people who are learning how to aim and shoot. While you do this, it helps to develop your focus.

 

  1. The bow is not noisy. This is suitable for hunters because you have the liberty of shooting at more animals without distracting other prey around it.

 

  1. Most love it because it is light. It has additional straps that ease the weight, especially when walking for long distances.

 

Cons of the compound bow

 

  1.  People use much time learning how to aim. This would be a significant disadvantage for beginners. You also have to learn how to focus when aiming at your target as well.

 

  1. They are not as powerful. Most people prefer to use the bow for the sport rather than hunting. The strength you apply on the string determines the distance that the arrow travels.

 

  1. Compound bows are not suitable for individuals with disabilities. Additionally, if you have an injured arm, it would be difficult to handle the bow.

 

Conclusion

The type of bow you choose depends on your preference. Check www.archery-den.com/best-crossbows/ to see the most suitable bow for you. You will find a variety of bows to pick depending on your budget.

 

5 Tips to Learning How to Hunt

 

Hunting is a favorite pastime of many. In fact, people have been hunting for years and it is a sport that has been able to bring family members together for centuries. In addition to bringing people together, hunting provides a great deal of food for one’s family and also helps the environment with natural population control. While there will always be some that do not believe in the hunt, there are cultures that rely on it for survival and see it as a way of life. If you have never gone hunting before, this article will provide some tips to help you learn how to hunt.

 

  • Slow and steady wins the race. No matter what you are hunting for, it is important to be slow and steady in your approach. The reason for this is that animals have a keen sense of smell and can hear things from farther away than humans can. New hunters tend to find the notion of staying still and moving slow to be a hard concept to grasp at first. One of the best ways to get the hang of being still or moving slow is to use your watch. Find a place to perch or hide and stay there for at least 5 minutes before you decide to slowly creep to another area.

 

  • Stop when you hear noise. Whether you hear a deer, squirrel, or a group of ducks, when you hear a noise, it is best to stop and be still for a few minutes. When you stop and can be still, you can take in what is going on around you. If you make a sound and an animal is around, they will stand still and look around for a period of time. A duck may fly off into the distance while alerting others of the same species.

 

  • The environment can make a difference. Whether you choose to hunt during the day or in the early morning hours, the environment in which you seek animals or ducks makes a big difference. For example, if you are seeking out a duck, check to see which direction the wind is blowing. In addition, look for water holes as ducks are typically attracted to them. Setting up decoy ducks and using a good set of waders are important recommended tips for hunting ducks that should not be overlooked.

 

  • Bring proper tools. When hunting, it is important to field dress your prey right away or you will risk spoiling the meat. This is particularly true for deer meat but also for other smaller game. Make sure to bring along a pair of skinning shears as you should skin the fur off of smaller animals such as a rabbit or a squirrel as soon as you kill it. The reason for this is that the fur will come off easier when the animal is still warm. One of the most important reasons to handle this right away is that many animals carry fleas. Fleas can carry disease. When you skin the animal, you can get rid of the fleas before it has time to attach to the meat.

 

  • Dress warm and bring a canteen. It is important to dress for the weather and stay hydrated while you are out hunting. If you are out hunting for a full day you don’t want to get cold or dehydrated. Make sure you wear enough layers and bring waterproof clothing if you think there may be a chance of rain. It’s alway a good idea to workout how much fluid you need for the amount of hours you intend on hunting and pack appropriately.

 

 

10 Tips On How To Survive In The Woods

10 Tips to survive in the woods. - YearZeroSurvival.com

Camping and outdoor adventures are a treasured pastime of this great nation. Unfortunately, you cannot always account for something going wrong when you are out alone in the woods. Survival can be very difficult in more unforgiving circumstances that can be found in the wild, and you should get yourself prepared for this possibility with these survival wilderness tips:

  1. Remain Calm

The absolute worst thing that you can do when things go sideways on a hike or camping trip is to panic. With a clear head, you can make rational decisions and better plan your next thing that has to be done in order to stay alive and stay alert for potential rescue.

  1. Get A Fire Going

Another critical aspect of your survival is going to be warmth and food preparation. This is done through building a fire. While you don’t need a substantial burning inferno, you should have a decent flame going so that you don’t have to constantly be babysitting it to prevent it from going out. An ideal fire can last for a couple of hours without you having to adjust it or add on to it.

  1. Find A Source of Drinkable Water

Likely you have brought along enough water for the time that you intended to be out in the wilderness, but that is about it. When you become stranded or lost, you have to be thinking about water sources to keep yourself hydrated. Streams and creeks can be a good source of water in a pinch, so scope out your surroundings and find a spot to get a steady drinking source.

  1. Start Thinking Shelter

If you were just out in the woods for a hike or a day-long excursion, you are not likely toting around a tent with you. Creating a shelter might seem like a tall order, but sites like https://www.survivalenvy.com can help you get some lightweight portable gear that can make a quality short-term shelter until help arrives.

  1. Take Note of Your Supplies

Understanding what you have and how much of it you have can be the difference in your survival. Rationing out the food, for instance, ensures that you are able to stay nourished over longer periods of time rather than eating all of your available food well before being rescued or making it back to civilization.

  1. Know Ahead of Time What Plants Are Edible

It is always sound advice to understand the vegetation in the area well ahead of your trip. Know what kinds of plants that you can eat, and which ones will cause you harm or make you sick. If you find yourself without food to eat, this knowledge can keep you alive.

  1. Put Your Multi-Tool To Work

Your multi-tool can have a number of great purposes when you find yourself stranded. Pliers can prove a helpful implement for creating a shelter and a knife can help create a spear to skewer fish from brooks and creeks.

  1. Get Your Bearings

Whether you have a compass or not, you should be able to find north at any time of the day by the position of the sun or certain stars in the sky. This can help you determine a definitive direction to travel to end up back where you came from.

  1. Prepare A Distress Signal

If the direction cannot help you find your way back home, you have to think of a way to signal from great distances where you are when help arrives. This can be another important reason for keeping your fire going all hours of the day and night.

  1. Talk To Your Friends and Family Ahead of Time

You can avoid the panic of not being found by talking out your planned excursion with friends and family. If they know where you are, and where you planned to go, finding you should go a lot more quickly.

These are some quality tips to help you survive out in the woods. While no one can anticipate this kind of emergency situation happening, mentally preparing for the possibility and keeping your cool through this trying time can help you to stay alive.

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