Wilderness Safety

9:45 p.m. on April 5, 2013 (EDT)
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140 forum posts

I'm not a expert and I feel if I learn something new everyday it will make my day or plans go better.  I found this on youtube and I feel it has very good information about first aid in the wilderness.  I have been lucky or careful or little of both, but this video help me learn something new.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gy1EzaRPPc4

10:30 a.m. on April 6, 2013 (EDT)
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1,131 forum posts

Except for sprained ankles and the like, the worst injuries I have seen in the back country were related to running rapids and people getting bucked off horses and mules.  The further you get from a dirt road the more careful you have to be.

In the case of running rivers.  Some rapids should be portaged or lined in remote country that might be run closer to home.

11:23 a.m. on April 6, 2013 (EDT)
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I agree; after years of carrying a rather large medical kit into the bush, the only injuries that have occurred were the odd pulled muscle. I have since adjusted the content of my kit to match the realities of my travels. As for canoeing, I have portaged or lined almost every rapid I have come to with rare exception. Since I normally travel solo, and long before Spot and its like, no one knew where I was at any given time. So waiting for a rescue was not an option. Also, the places I frequent, a damaged canoe and lost gear can mean starvation and death.

1:15 p.m. on April 7, 2013 (EDT)
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843 forum posts

looks like a good video. I didn't watch the whole thing, but she seemed very knowledgeable. I carry a suture kit in my first aid kit, that is the only specialized item I have. the rest I do with duct tape and aspirin.

11:06 a.m. on April 8, 2013 (EDT)
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North sounds to me more and more like he knows what he is talking about.  "No one ever died on a portage."

I would like to address a topic under safety that is rarely talked about.  When I was young, there was a certain amount of drug use in the backcountry.  Recently I had a similar experience.  We used to make people wait until camp was set up and have them wear life jackets around water.  Now I want to be in complete control of my faculties and I expect my companions to do the same.

8:19 p.m. on April 8, 2013 (EDT)
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843 forum posts

out here there are a lot of teenagers who go camping for the purpose of getting wasted. they are the ones who end up on the news. it makes me wonder where their parents are. probably getting wasted with them. it's pathetic. 

11:26 a.m. on April 9, 2013 (EDT)
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Good video with some relevant items that the usual First Aid/CPR courses don't get into. Important information on altitude sickness and some other problems unique to hikers, climbers and campers.

The worst problem I've personally had was a badly sprained ankle, and I've taped up other people's ankles and knees, too. Occasional minor cuts and bruises seem to come with the territory, but other problems rarely arise. 

Since I'm usually responsible for a group, though, I have to be ready for other, more dangerous situations. Falling is a hazard in mountainous terrain,  so I'll carry a rope, belay tube and harness if I'm looking for elevation. Since hypothermia can be a problem even in summer, I carry extra space blankets and dollar store ponchos to hand out if needed (or to use as a shelter), and I carry a Quikclot pack in case someone gets an arterial gash. 

But that all depends on the circumstances. Most people don't have those concerns.

5:06 p.m. on April 11, 2013 (EDT)
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Having a great First Aid Kit can put your mind at ease before a hike but knowing how to use it is crucial. I too have tried to pare down my kit do deal with mostly aches & pains as well as some basic would care. I have never had more than muscle pains or minor cuts other except for two separate hikes in Hawaii.  One time my wife badly sprained both knees and we were in the middle of the jungle. Still not much we can do other than wait and go slow. Except in this instance we met some State Employee maintenance workers who told us of a Helicopter coming in the next day. What a stroke of luck she was carried out and I went back to our original site packed up the gear and carried our gear...all of it, out. Another time on a solo trek, on the Kalalau in Kauai, Hawaii I was out of shape and knew better. Within hours my knees were killing me and by morning I knew there was little chance to stay on schedule and complete my trip. I turned around and head back to the car after only 1 day of a 5 day trip. Sometimes intelligence outweighs desire.

As far as Drugs on the trail or in camp. Beer and Booze is up to whomever I am with, if they want to carry I am fine, just don't forget to share. Drugs, I never say anything if it is green in color. A little herb on the trail or in camp is not a big risk. Organics (Mushrooms) can be managed if in a safe environment if the hiking is done and the only way to get hurt is by falling on a cactus or in the sand. As far as anything else, well not in my camp. I need people to be able to to take care of themselves, I have a hard enough time taking care of me, the wife and the dogs.

August 28, 2014
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