Posted by Ericka Evans on

There are standard survival items that we should certainly take with us at all times when hitting the trails.

This holds true for all treks regardless of distance. These survival items do not take up much room and can be held in a small pack. No one ever plans to get lost or injured. It's normally best to be prepared and not need it, than need it and not be prepared!

Emergency Kits
It's so easy to end up being lost, stranded or hurt while hiking so make sure to have a bunch of essentials with you at all times. Things like a light stick or flashlight, water resistant matches or fire starter, emergency poncho, emergency whistle, a compass, emergency blanket, a knife or multi-tool, adhesive bandages, gauze pads, and tape. You can either pick up a each item individually from your local big box store or buy a all-n-one package like here, here and here.

Water and Water Filtering
Make sure to bring lots of water with you in addition to something to purify water in case of an emergency. I suggest a portable mini water filtering pump like this one. Water filtration tablets are also an excellent product to carry as they are budget friendly and light-weight.

Rope Paracord Bracelet
Rope is just one of those items that can really help you out if you're in a predicament. If you aren't aware of it, paracord is an invaluable "rope" to bring with you. There are numerous wearable items such as a paracord bracelet which is great for hiking. This one is quite cool as it checks off a few items on this list. It is a 6' ft. paracord, a fire starter and knife. You can also find some terrific tutorials on YouTube on making your own paracord bracelet.

Sun Defense
Be sure to put sunscreen on prior to heading out-- even on cloudy days-- as well as taking some with you to re-apply throughout the day. Wear a hat and clothes that protects your skin. There are lots of breathable choices that aid with protection while still keeping you cool. Do not forget your sunglasses to cover your eyes from the extreme UV rays of the sun! I understand this one may not appear so "life saving" but consider long term!

Be sure you bring food with you. I would suggest foods that hold up long and pack well, such as energy bars, trail mix, dried fruit, nuts, jerky, and so on. There are also lots of items offered primarily for hiking and backpacking but I prefer to just toss my own together as they can become quite expensive.

A headlamp is an important item to bring at all times. If you get lost or need to be out previous dark, having something hands free to brighten your path is a must. I advise a water resistant, LED headlamp that likewise offers SOS flashing to signal assistance.

Fire Starter
Make sure you bring a water resistant fire starter when you are on the trails. A butane lighter or water resistant matches are the simplest choice. I would also advise bringing something you can quickly fire up such as, dry tinder, fire starter, candlesticks, or perhaps compact clothes dryer lint. Carry it in a plastic or dry bag to make certain it stays dry in all situations.

Duct Tape
Duct tape is one of those items that is extremely useful. It can be utilized for binding, blisters, making rope, fixing cracked water bottle, bandages, repairing clothing, equipment, boots, etc. You can purchase small rolls particularly for hiking/backpacking at any local big box store. You can also buy a normal size roll and wrap some around the grip of a flashlight, hiking stick, water bottle, or lighter to keep you from needing to carry the whole roll.

Emergency Situation Blanket
Emergency blankets have actually come a long way in the last couple of years. Once again, a kit like the Featherlite Survival Kit 2.0 includes one along with other items on this list for one inexpensive price. It is little, lightweight and can be connected to the side your pack. The item is reusable, tear resistant, bright colored, and waterproof. There are multiple usages besides the apparent warmness. It can be used as an emergency signal, for rain protection, ground cover, water collector, shelter, etc. it could be a serious factor in your survival.

A compass is a must have as it can be simple to get turned around in the wild. Make sure to get a high quality compass. There are plenty of electronic devices you can use also but I highly suggest carrying an excellent old fashioned compass at all times. You can in no way be positive that your electronics will not fail you, get ruined, or lose battery.

Knife or Multi-Tool
I regularly bring a knife (at minimum) or a multi-tool (even better). You never ever know when you might really need one! There are a lot of excellent multi-tools out there ranging from $10 to all the way over $100 and all can serve an excellent purpose in a survival scenario.

Extra Layer of Clothing
It's a crucial tip is to always bring an additional layer of clothes with you. This is particularly important if you're hiking in a location with extreme temperature shifts.

A whistle is an excellent emergency situation tool for hiking. The sound carries further than your voice and is much less tiresome than screaming. It works in an emergency scenario to call for help and also to find the rest of your group if you were to get separated. There are plenty of excellent types that you can hook straight to your pack. For something so light, it doesn't make sense not to carry one with you.

Happy Hiking!

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