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 gears, 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 a 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.

 

These 5 Items Should Be On Your Survival Kit List

The average human can live up to three weeks sans food, but only three days without water. That said, the items that you include in your emergency survival kit, whether for venturing into the wilderness or for urban readiness, can spell life and death. Fortunately, you don’t have to be in a situation where you are left with no choice. You can increase your chances of surviving in almost any situation, provided that you have the right tools.

Ideally, the more items you have in your tactical survival gear, the easier it will be for you to survive. However, it also means that you add weight or bulk to your pack. While you obviously cannot carry your entire arsenal with you at all times (you’re not The Terminator), you can certainly select specific sets for different scenarios. There are also core tools that should also be present no matter the situation. Here are five of these essentials.

 

  1. Tactical knife

 

In a true survival situation, the chances of you needing to cut something are very high. Thus, you need a reliable knife that’s easy to handle, strong, and razor sharp. You will likely be using it for various purposes, so in place of getting a singular unit, you might want to have a multi-tool that also includes a knife feature.

 

  1. Firestarter

 

Fire in the wilderness or in the evenings is essential to maintaining your core body temperature (or to cook). Remember that it takes only 3 hours for the body to survive outside of its base temp. Having a trusty gadget takes the effort out of rubbing sticks together. Your kit should have three ways to start a fire. One is an automatic Firestarter, two is a regular box of matches, and three is a striker. Don’t forget to pack them in waterproof packs and separately.

 

  1. First aid kit

 

This is a critical kit that should be with you at all times. There are plenty of generic first aid kits at supermarkets, but you can expand them with pressure dressings and probably a compass, too. Study the pocket manual that came with the kit before you even head out, so you know what to do instantly and will not fumble when an actual emergency happens.

 

  1. Water or water filtration

 

No person can survive without water for more than 72 hours. Under non-threatening circumstances, an average human should also be drinking at least 1 gallon of water daily. Having a water bottle or a water filtration system ready ensures that you have access to safe drinking water at all times. It is especially helpful if you’re going on an adventure with a group because water in this setup can easily run out, and you might need to take some from an organic source.

 

  1. Flashlight or torch

 

Let there be light! Whether for venturing into an unfamiliar territory or walking at night, you will need light to navigate. Fortunately, there are many models that offer powerful illumination even with very small and lightweight bodies.

 

Of course, the most important tool you should have no matter where you are going is knowledge. Without knowing how to use any of these items, your chances of surviving are slim. Equip yourself with the ability to read weather signs, where to go and what to do in case of a natural disaster, what areas to avoid to secure your safety, and more.

 

There are plenty of online resources and books that will teach you different tactics on how to protect yourself, whether in the wild, when out in the city, or even when you’re just at home. The monthly gear from TacPack also offers the latest gadgets and innovations that can help make you feel safer everywhere you go, without being heavy on the back and on the budget.

Staying Safe in an Earthquake – How to Be Prepared

Nobody wants to confront a major natural disaster. Yet some disasters – hurricanes, blizzards, and tornadoes, to name a few – come with warning signs, allowing for minor preparation and escape.

Earthquakes, on the other hand, happen immediately and with no warning. They are so all-consuming and widespread that you cannot jump in the car and escape them.

If you are in the impact zone, you will be affected. But the degree to which you are affected can be minimized. It all depends on how prepared you are for the quake. Preparation does take some time, but you will reap the benefits many times over in the event of a major earthquake.

What Is a Quake Like?

Ordinary life immediately precedes an earthquake. You are washing the dishes, watching TV, doing homework, or putting on a helmet for a bike ride. Then you feel that initial jolt.

You may not realize it at first, thinking that it is something else – that someone dropped something heavy. Then you become aware of the noises, of chandeliers rattling, the house frame squeaking, glasses dropping and breaking, car alarms going off.

If you are indoors, items that are not secured – books, TVs, glassware, and lamps – will topple and fall. Hanging items will begin to swing. As these things are falling, you become aware that you might just become the victim of one of these falling things.

If you are outdoors, trees sway and water sloshes out of swimming pools.

The first jerk is followed by several more back-and-forth jerks. You may find it hard to stand.

Even though most earthquakes last only seconds – rarely more than thirty seconds – it will feel like forever.

Right after the shaking stops, the noise continues: dogs barking, people shouting, alarms ringing. Milder aftershocks continue for minutes or hours. Your electricity has probably gone out. Water may not be safe to drink, or water mains may be broken. Gas lines may erupt.

You have just experienced an earthquake measuring 7.0 or greater on the Richter scale.1

Predicting Quakes

Unfortunately, no one can predict earthquakes. According to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), no scientists have ever predicted a major earthquake, nor are any scientists expected to be able to do so in the foreseeable future.

The best that scientists can do is produce tables that calculate the probability that an earthquake may occur. The milder the earthquake, the greater the probability that it will occur within the next 30 years. More severe quakes measuring 7.0 or higher on the Richter scale – those truly life-altering, disastrous quakes – are less probable to happen.

For example, because Southern California already experiences quakes between 5 and 6 on the Richter scale about four times per year, there is a 100 percent chance of another quake of similar strength happening within the next 30 years. However, because major magnitude-7.5 quakes have happened about once every 87 years, Southern California has only a 36 percent chance of another one happening in the next 30 years.2

Be Ready: Making an Earthquake Preparedness Kit

To help make your recovery from an earthquake safer and more comfortable, you should stock up your home with a set of essential preparedness items. Keep these items stored in a clean, dry place.3

Essential Items

  • Water: One gallon per person for every day. Provide for a two-week supply of water.
  • Food: Non-perishable items such as canned food or dry camping food that can be reconstituted with water. Be sure to have a can opener as well.
  • Gas/Water Shutoff Tool: This specialized wrench fits gas and water shutoff valves and can be purchased at your local home improvement or hardware store.
  • Flashlight: Have both battery-powered and crank flashlights. Keep a full set of fresh batteries on hand, too.
  • Radio: Purchase a hand-crank radio.
  • Medications: These are essential daily prescription items that are needed to maintain regular health.
  • First-Aid Kit: Basic kit that has gauze, adhesive bandages, antiseptic, aspirin or ibuprofen, and heat packs.
  • Tool Kit: Small tool kit with screwdrivers, pliers, and a hammer. If you wish, you may substitute a multipurpose tool.
  • Eyewear: Extra glasses, contact lenses, and solution.
  • Personal Documents: Assemble a fireproof lockbox with prescription slips, home and car titles, birth certificates, passports, and all insurance policies, including homeowner’s insurance policy.
  • Contact List: Written spreadsheet or other type of list of phone numbers and addresses of relatives, close associates, local hospitals, and police and fire stations.
  • Cash: Several hundred dollars in small bills.
  • Thick Blankets
  • Paper Maps: Detailed maps of your local area.

Extra or Optional Items

  • Baby Supplies: Bottles, formula, diapers, food.
  • Pet Supplies: Food, ID, collar, carrier.
  • Entertainment: Books, cards, board games.
  • Signal Devices: Whistle, air horn, flares.
  • Feminine Sanitary Items
  • Rain Gear
  • Camping Stove: Stove with extra propane canisters and waterproof matches.
  • Plastic Sheeting
  • Duct Tape
  • Gloves
  • Towels
  • Knife and Scissors
  • Water Purification: Tablets or bleach.
  • Sleeping Bags

How to Make Your Home Safer in Case the Big One Strikes

Chances are good that your home is not prepared for an earthquake. While your house may seem solid and safe, it is likely not ready for the rigors of a magnitude-7.0 earthquake. Undertake these projects now for a safer home:4

Secure Water Heaters

Secure heaters to walls with metal straps. These bands can be purchased as part of a kit, available at home improvement stores.

Attach Bookcases, Filing Cabinets, and Tall Cabinets to Wall

Affix any kind of furniture that can tip over to a wall stud, using a metal L-brace or a nylon strap.

Create Barriers on Shelves

Attach ledge barriers along the edges of shelves to prevent items from sliding off and falling.

Secure Gas Appliances

Attach flexible connections to allow appliances to shift without breaking their lines. As with the water heater, attach large gas appliances to the nearest wall.

Minimize Shattered Glass on Windows

Install clear or shaded safety film on windows. This will prevent glass from scattering across the floor.

Secure House to Foundation

Consult a contractor to install anchor bolts between the house framing and the foundation.

Strap Down Chimney

Attach reinforcing bars or metal straps to the chimney to prevent it from snapping and breaking off in the event of an earthquake.

During and After an Earthquake: Keeping Yourself and Your Family Safe

During The Quake5

DO:

  • Drop to the ground and take cover under the nearest strong piece of furniture, like a table or desk.
  • Stay indoors. Even though open outdoor spaces are safer than being indoors, falling objects can injure you as you try to move outside.
  • If you are driving, stop at the nearest clear, open area, away from buildings. Remain in the car.

DO NOT:

  • Stand under a door frame. Once standard advice, this is now outdated, as modern door frames are rarely stronger than other parts of the house.
  • Stand next to buildings, trees, or power lines, which could collapse and injure you.
  • Go to a window, as glass may break and hurt you.
  • Stand next to book cases, high pantry cabinets, refrigerators, or other top-heavy items that may fall.

After The Quake

Even though the earthquake may last only seconds, the aftermath may go on for days or weeks to come. Follow these fifteen steps, in this order:

  1. Wait for the aftershocks to end.
  2. Check yourself for injuries first before assisting others.
  3. Put on shoes to protect yourself against broken glass.
  4. Check for fires and extinguish them immediately.
  5. Shut off natural gas and water lines.
  6. Move yourself and your family to the nearest open area.
  7. Open windows to ventilate your home.
  8. Check your house for structural damage.
  9. Begin gathering water from the water heater release valve, ice cube trays, and toilet tanks.
  10. Check sewer lines for damage before flushing the toilet.
  11. Inspect the chimney for cracks that may indicate potential collapse.
  12. Keep the freezer closed for as long as possible to retain the cold.
  13. Set up charcoal grill outside for cooking.
  14. Stay at home if at all possible. Roads will be impassable.
  15. Check your emergency radio for information.

Earthquakes are devastating events. Fortunately, you and your family can remain safe by following basic safety plans.


Source: Fix.com Blog

Sources:

  1. How Long Earthquakes Last – http://quake.utah.edu/regional-info/earthquake-faq
  2. Earthquake Probability – https://pubs.usgs.gov/fs/2015/3009/pdf/fs2015-3009.pdf
  3. Red Cross Earthquake Preparedness Kit – http://www.redcross.org/get-help/prepare-for-emergencies/be-red-cross-ready/get-a-kit
  4. 6. Prepare House for Earthquake – http://www.military.com/money/home-ownership/maintaining-your-home/tips-to-make-home-earthquake-ready.html
  5. Quake: Do This / Do Not Do This – http://www.nationalgeographic.com/environment/natural-disasters/earthquake-safety-tips/

Here’s A Checklist To Check Against Your Emergency Plan

 

Just how prepared are you when it comes to disaster management? You may never experience a disaster, but it doesn’t hurt to be prepared. If not well equipped, disasters may strike, and you will be left without a contingency plan to curb them. It is highly essential that you come up with an emergency plan for your family.

One of the deadliest hurricanes in history is Hurricane Katrina which left over 1,200 people dead in August 2005. Such occurrences are quite scary. However, as rare and horrific as they might be to ponder, you need to be prepared when they occur. What you need is a disaster preparedness plan to help you get through such periods.

Before coming up with a plan, have a sit-down with your family and discuss some of the ways you can become prepare for this type of situation. Take a critical look at the possible threats to devise a comprehensive plan. Preplanning helps to bring to light some of the resources you may not have on hand. This ensures that you purchase them before anything happens.

Why should people take emergency plans seriously? They prevent possible injuries, damages and help in increasing the chances of survival after an occurrence.  Some of the things that should be in your family emergency plan are as follows.

 

  1. Create a Communication Plan

Contacts are an essential requirement. Analyze all of your relatives and decide on one your family can all share as a common emergency contact. As you choose, ensure that the relative is not likely to be affected by some of the occurrences in your area. Once completed, confirm that each of your family members has the relative’s contact information.

Ensure that your kids have the contact information as well and if possible, leave the contacts with school management. Also, ensure that there is an email attached to the contacts, so they have alternative ways to get ahold of the family member.  Also, keep your documents safe for disaster times.

 

  1. Have a Common Meeting Point

As a family, being in one place after disaster strikes will reduce stress levels and ensure that everyone is out of harm’s way. Determine a drill where you identify one common location scheduled as a meeting point when any disaster happens. Practice emergency situations and have a defined route available, especially for children.

A meeting point will help in reconnecting so that you can plan the next action as a family without the disorientation of looking for other members.  A useful tip would be for every family to note down the specific location for easier tracing.

 

  1. Have an Emergency Supply Kit

When disasters happen, it’s normal to have accidents. It could be just a regular power outage that if not well prepared for, could cause significant hiccups. In such a case, have rechargeable batteries that will provide a temporary lighting solution.  Create an emergency kit that contains a series of first aid supplies as well as other preventive measures. The FAST-ACT Chemical Decontamination products can keep you safe and prepared in the event that a chemical attack was to occur.

There should be a substantial amount of water and food in your kit for survival. Have food supplies that can last you for about a week or even more. The kit should also have enough necessary medical supplies for every member of your family.

 

  1. Include Photos of Your Family Members

Sometimes, during floods or occurrences of seismic forces, a family member may not have reached home and may be in danger. What comes to mind first? Calling them is the first option but what happens when their phone has been turned off? Have a photo of them so that you can ask nearby civilians or emergency crew for increased chances of tracing them.

 

  1. A Power Bank as a Lifesaver

In this modern age, everybody deserves to have a power bank. It does not matter if you have a 10,000 mAh; it will still go off at some point. To make sure that does not happen, always ensure that you have a power bank on hand; it will definitely come in handy to recharge a dead phone.  It will even help in contacting 911 or an emergency response team.

 

  1. Vulnerability Assessment

As much as emergencies are rapid, some events can never be predicted. Research more on the possible hazards around your region so that you have a contingency plan when they occur. This does not necessarily mean you prepare for the specific risk alone. If preferred, consult engineering experts or fire departments for a more precise picture of potential environmental hazards.

A vulnerability assessment will help you feel a level of certainty in preparation. With such an evaluation, your plan is complete as you will have tackled significant possibilities.

 

  1. Communication with Neighbors

It’s possible that due to work and family obligations, you may not often talk with your neighbors. However, it’s important to keep in touch because when a disaster strikes, you will need their help. You may introduce walkie-talkies so that you can communicate in case your phone goes off. Neighbors are an asset in the emergency plan as they are close by and if you get stranded, they may just be the most immediate help available. Contacting neighbors comes in handy when you desperately need help that can’t wait.

Communication is one of the critical essentials of an emergency plan. Keeping everyone informed is necessary so that you all are on the same page. The program devised may involve planning for evacuation in extreme situations. Put that in mind as you come up with the plan. It’s important to keep your verification documents in a waterproof safety box and if possible, make copies too.

32 Survival Uses For Trash Bags

 

Heavy-duty plastic bags, like those meant for trash and yard debris, can be used in a surprisingly wide variety of ways to help ensure your survival during a disaster situation like an earthquake, hurricane, or even Zombie outbreak. These light-weight, extremely low cost, readily available, and incredibly versatile tools should be in every B.O.B. (Bug Out Bag)  and Emergency kit.

Trash Bags

We’ve listed a few of our favorite survival uses for plastic bags, but keep in mind that this everyday item is only limited by your imagination… and whether or not you happen to have a few on hand.

 

 

MEDICAL 

While it might be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of a trash bag or yard debris bag; a clean, unused bag can be used for a wide variety of medical purposes.

Waterproof bandages – After applying the appropriate bandage to a wound, place a layer of plastic bag over the bandage to protect it from outside moisture and contamination. Secure the protective covering properly, and remove and change the bandage and covering as needed.

Fight hypothermia – The potentially deadly effects of hypothermia can be battled by utilizing a large plastic bag as a “hot box” or additional layer to trap heat next to the body. Simply cut a hole for your head (and arms if needed), and wear the bag as a pullover. You can also simply drape the bag over your body, as you might a survival blanket.

Cold Compress – Fill with snow, ice, or cold water. Fold or tie off bag and apply as needed.

Handle medical waste – Plastic bags can be utilized as gloves for handling medical waste and contaminates such as blood, organs, vomit, and fecal matter… though we’re not sure why you’d handle the last two, unless you’re cleaning up a mess. Check the bag for punctures and/or rips BEFORE you try them on as gloves.

Tourniquet – Like many other flexible materials, large plastic bags can be used as a makeshift tourniquet. While it wont be the best thing for long term use, it can make a world of difference for the short run… remember it’s all about surviving the moment, you can worry about the long-term later.

Sling – Plastic bags can be used to support and immobilize a broken or wounded arm.

 

WATER

Containers come in handy when you need to collect, transport, and/or treat water, but there’s even more that you can use them for when it comes to water.

Collection/Storage – Lining a trash can, hole in the ground, or other receptacle with a clean plastic bag makes the collection of rainwater safer than simply letting it fill into a potentially contaminated container. Plastic bags can also be used as scoops for collecting water from pools, streams, and other bodies of water.

Solar Still – Fully enclose the leafy green area of a tree branch, securing the plastic bag tightly at the opening. Let it sit in the sun for a few hours as the condensation builds within the bag . Carefully remove the bag when ready, and repeat the process as needed. This method doesn’t typically result in large amounts of liquid, but every little bit counts… especially during a survival situation.

Transport – Creating a sturdy double walled bag for transporting water can be done in just a few steps. Cut or tear open the sealed end of a plastic bag so you are left with a tube. Twist or tie a knot in the center of the bag so you are left with two open ends and a shape like an hourglass. Fold one side over the other and you’re left with a double walled water carrying device.

Filter/Purify – Water isn’t any good to you if it isn’t safe to drink, but a simple plastic bag can go a long way to making water potable. Learn other important tips and tricks for water filtration and purification here: H20 (Water).

Gravity Filter – Gravity filters are simple multi-layer systems that remove the majority of contaminates, and you can easily make one at home. Double wall a plastic bag as seen in the WATER: Transportation portion of this article. Cut a small “spout” hole into the lowest point possible, without destroying the integrity of the bag too much. Reinforce the spout with a bit of duct tape so it doesn’t split when filled. Next, place a coffee filter, bandana, or similar cloth or material for filtering inside the bag and up against the spout. Then carefully pack and layer the following materials into the lower portion of the bag: 2″-3″ finely crushed charcoal, 2″ fine sand, 1″ small stones, 1″fine sand, and 1″ moss, grass, or other porous material. Gently fill the bag with water, tie a knot into the top, hang it up, and allow it to do the job.

Solar Treatment / SODIS – This can be a fairly unpredictable method for treating water, especially during cloudy or winter weather, but when done properly, it can work like a charm. The SODIS method relies on the power of solar rays to purify water; this is only helpful if larger contaminates have first been removed with basic filtration methods like the one listed above. Utilizing a large plastic bag for this method should be a last resort, as not all bags are made from food grade materials. This method is only effective when using CLEAR plastic, tinted or colored materials will not work. 

Solar Shower – Fill a darkly colored plastic bag with water, hang it above head height, let it sit in the sun for a bit to warm up, poke a couple of small holes in the bottom, and enjoy a nice warm shower.

 

FOOD

Collecting, capturing, and storing food can be difficult during a survival situation, but a trash bag can make the task a whole lot easier.

Collection – Whether you’re raiding the wilds, a nearby farm, or grocery store, containers come in handy… and that’s just what a trash bag is, a container. No matter what you find or where you find it, you’ll need a way to carry your collected goods.

Storage – Just like with water, lining a trash can, hole in the ground, or other receptacle with a clean plastic bag makes the storage of food much safer than placing it into a potentially contaminated or uncovered container. Plastic bags can be sealed by twisting the top and adding a bit of cordage, or simply by tying a knot in the top of the bag itself.

In addition to being a great lightweight container for food items, plastic bags can be tied and hung away from the ground and the prying hands of Zombies, other survivors, and wild animals. A well-sealed bag can offer the advantage of a longer shelf-life of some foods… as long as you store it in a cool dry place.

Trapping Set them as netting for bugs and fish, or use them as sacks to quickly and more easily bag a bird, squirrel, or other small animal that lends itself to capture.

 

SHELTER

From additional security to being used as shelters themselves, heavy-duty plastic bags can be utilized in a number of ways when it comes to provide protection from the elements and the undead.

Tarp Tent – Just like an emergency blanket, poncho, or tarp, a plastic bag can be used to create basic Tarp Tent style shelters and protective covers. Cutting the bag down the length of one side, and slicing it along the bottom, can double the square feet of material available for your shelter or cover. Make sure to carry a bit of paracord with you to help when securing your shelter.

Tube Tent – Tear or cut open the sealed end of a large plastic bag, duct tape the tube to another bag, slide yourself inside, and rest well. The ambient heat from your body will build and help to keep your body warm… even in wet and windy weather.

Ground Cover – This one is as simple as it sounds, but it’s important too… especially when you’re sleeping in the wild. Keeping your body away from moisture and the cold of the ground can greatly increase your chances of survival.

Window Black Out – Just because you’re home doesn’t mean you have to look like you are. Blacking out your windows is an important step to ensuring you aren’t hassled by outsiders or spotted by Zombies in a post apocalyptic world. Covering your windows with black trash bags can keep the light from getting out, and you from being seen.

Quarantine – Duct tape and plastic bags can be used to create a fairly effective quarantine area, whether at home or in the field. Simply seal off an area with the bags and duct tape, and make sure it isn’t breached. You’ll need to fully cover any potential areas of transmission, such as heating vents, windows, doorways, etc. 

 

GEAR/OTHER

Beyond water and food collection, medical assistance, and shelter; plastic trash bags can be utilized as a substitute for many types of gear.

Rain Poncho – The only downside to wearing a plastic bag as a rain poncho is that they don’t breathe. This means that while it will hold the rain and snow out, it will also hold your sweat in. Pay close attention to your body temperature and water-loss when wearing a non-permeable covering like this.

Gear Bag / Dry Bag– Twist the bag a few times just above the line of the gear inside. Fold the excess over top of the bag and carry it upside down. This should create a relatively water-tight seal that still allows for somewhat easy access to important gear and supplies.

Water-proof Boots/Gaiters – Applied over boots, and even bare or minimally covered feet, plastic bags make an excellent material for water-proofing and protection from the elements. They can also be wrapped around the shins or legs as makeshift gaiters for travel through swampy or other exceedingly wet areas.

Flotation Device – Filled with air and twisted shut, heavy-duty trash bags are extremely lightweight and buoyant. They can be used to assist in crossing deep water by simply being held onto, or they can be applied to a raft or other flotation device.

Sleeping Bag / Mattress – Similar to being used as a Tube Tent, large plastic bags make great sleeping bags when stuff with materials like leaves, fabric, stuffing, packing peanuts, etc. Fill the bag as full as possible and crawl in, or use it as a sleeping surface for the night. Not only will this method protect you from the cold, it will help to keep away potential contaminates as well.

Washing Machine – Placing garments into a plastic bag that has been partially filled with water and soap, can actually make a world of difference when attempting to get your clothes clean. Once everything is in there, just jostle it around, empty it out, rinse your clothing, and hang them to dry. Remember, proper hygiene can go a long way to keeping you alive.

Restroom – Sometimes the plumbing goes out, but that doesn’t mean you don’t need to use the bathroom. Placed into a drained toilet or into a 5 gallon bucket, plastic bags can make dealing with waste, a much cleaner and easier process. These can also be used to line latrines when you’re worried about contaminating a nearby water source.

 

OTHER MISC USES

Creating smoke for signal fires, lashing, patches for clothing and other gear, And of course… collecting and removing refuse, among about a million other uses.

Because not all trash bags are made with the intent of heavy-duty use, it’s a good idea to grab a few construction grade bags from your local hardware store or garden center. Keep a few on hand in your Bug Out Bag and E-kits and utilize them as needed… though we hope you never have to.

 

[source]

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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