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Wednesday, September 4, 2019

5 Ways to Avoid Getting Lost in the Wilderness

Anyone can get lost in the wilderness. Whether you're an experienced backpacker or a day hiker, a wrong turn can make you into a crazy place. But if you use the right tools, a clear plan, and some extra technical know-how, you'll be able to find a way back to civilization. Here are the five ways to avoid getting lost in the wilderness.

1. Prepare your pack
Packing the right amount of water, food, first aid kit, and clothes is the first step to outdoor safety. In addition to basic human needs, there are other items that can be used in an emergency.
  • A whistle
You can hear whistles from a distance, and if you're nervous, you can call someone with the whistle. The whistle also protects against any animal that moves along your path.
  • A brightly colored item
Wear bright-colored objects such as scarves, shirts, or raincoats to get your attention. It will also make you more aware of potential hunters in the area.
  • A flashlight
In addition to the obvious use of flashlights during dark activities, the tool is another way to send distress signals to people far away.

Every item in a package should have an essential purpose. Hopefully, you'll never need to use these items for emergency purposes, but if needed, you'll be ready.
2. Get and use the map and GPS tracker
You can use your smartphone to take a picture of the road map and then continue your happy way, paperless. It may sound like an old method, but having a physical map of the area you're passing through is a great way to keep you from getting lost. There are several conditions which can cause your phone and the information it holds to be permanently lost. Avoid the whole situation by carrying around a paper map and compass and knowing how to use them. Bring an outdoor GPS tracking device is also a good idea to stay in touch with your friends.

3. Observe
There is some guidance provided by nature. Nature can still be a beacon if we only know what to look for and how to use it for direction.
  • Observe the landmark
Once you notice them, landmarks are an easy way to identify your location. Psychological records of major landmarks are great, but writing down any major markers, signs, or streams is even better. You can even take photos of these locations for better identification on your return trip. Make sure these are features of nature that don't change when you're on the road.
  • Notice the time
When you feel lost, finding the next milestone may seem like an eternity. To calm your nerves and keep your location accurate, write down the time you arrive at a famous landmark and the time it takes you to arrive at the new location. If you think you're lost on the way back, the time it takes to get to the next destination will help you figure out if you're on the right track.

4. Don't panic
If the sun goes down and you turn a corner, you're bound to think of an invisible path, and your first reaction may be panic. For most people, the mere idea that you might get lost is enough to trigger anxiety, but you have to stay calm. Decisions made out of fear are rarely constructive, and drastic action without a clear head can often make things worse.

5. Stay on the trail
The simple rules of persistence can be easily broken. But, if you can see the trail, don't wander. You can contact with your teammates by a hiking tracker if there is no cell service.

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