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  1. #1

    Default Top 10 safety items you should carry in your backpack

    Safety is so important in the backcountry and it's always a big dilemma for me deciding what to carry and, what to leave behind.

    Take a look at this backcountry safety gear list blog post and let me know how you feel about this list.

    Have I missed anything? Too much? Too little?

    thanks!

  2. #2

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    A way to keep warm, dry, hydrated, and get found.

  3. #3
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    A container to collect / carry / drink from. Possibly something to purify also.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nodust View Post
    A way to keep warm, dry, hydrated, and get found.
    Bingo... maybe add the common sense not to work yourself into exhaustion. I find when people make the dumbest mistakes is when they are physically at their limits. Don't put yourself in that state and you remove a significant amount of risk.

  5. #5

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    Your thread makes it sound like you're talking to Backpackers but really you're more focused on Dayhikers, a completely different animal. Backpackers carry alot of stuff and most of it could be considered survival items---tent/tarp, bag, pad, food, water, stove, headlamp etc etc etc.

    Dayhikers go from nothing but flip flops, shorts and a t-shirt to guys with a full daypack containing the items you mention.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by AliciaG View Post
    Safety is so important in the backcountry and it's always a big dilemma for me deciding what to carry and, what to leave behind.

    Take a look at this backcountry safety gear list blog post and let me know how you feel about this list.

    Have I missed anything? Too much? Too little?

    thanks!
    1. radio - provides a false sense of security; replace with leave your trip itinerary with someone.

    5. Down jacket - replace with sufficient insulation layers to survive the expected overnight lows; in case you are benighted

    7. Map or GPS - replace with map and compass and the skill/experience to use them properly

    10. Fire Starter - add the skill/experience to create and sustain afire in the expected conditions

    ADD hard shell (rain protection) required to keep insulating layers dry while moving.

    Items I consider required - extra set of wool socks, wool hat, wool liner gloves

  7. #7
    Registered User Donde's Avatar
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    Why do people still suggest old school fire starters? A bic lighter is cheap effective and reliable, just pop it in a ziplock or someother waterproof storage (say the plastic case that came with your PocketRocket perhaps, and your good to go. Tom accurately points out having the ability to start and maintain a fire in challenging conditions is esential for any of this to be useful.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Donde View Post
    Why do people still suggest old school fire starters? A bic lighter is cheap effective and reliable, just pop it in a ziplock or someother waterproof storage (say the plastic case that came with your PocketRocket perhaps, and your good to go. Tom accurately points out having the ability to start and maintain a fire in challenging conditions is esential for any of this to be useful.
    I don't know what's 'old school' here. My 'go to' for lighting fires, including my alcohol stove, is a firesteel. I think it may have been lifesaving on one occasion when I slipped at a ford and wound up swimming - in 35°F air temperatures. I was getting hypothermic enough by the time I was starting a fire that I'm not sure I could have operated a Bic, but striking flint uses gross muscle coordination more than fine, and that worked. I knew the ford was dodgy, and gathered a small amount of wood on the near bank before starting to cross, to have a safe place to retreat. It had been raining for a week, but I found a mouse's nest for the first dry sticks and even a blown-down limb of a birch tree.

    Also, I don't find Bics to be that reliable in deep winter (the butane doesn't evaporate well enough, the lighter gets chilled when I take it out even if I've had it inside my jacket), or if the wheel gets wet (as with falling in at a ford, see above). The cotton-ball-and-Vaseline fire starter and sparks from a firesteel is pretty foolproof.. Of course, you need the skills to lay a fire and keep it going once you've got it alight.

    Of course, I'm an old dinosaur as well as being a clueless weekender, so the kids might be on to something I don't understand.
    I always know where I am. I'm right here.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Donde View Post
    Why do people still suggest old school fire starters? A bic lighter is cheap effective and reliable, ...l.
    Perhaps because a firesteel is more reliable, wet or dry, lasts forever and has no moving parts to fail. Can't imagine choosing a Butate bic over a quality firesteel.

  10. #10
    Registered User Redrowen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Donde View Post
    Why do people still suggest old school fire starters? A bic lighter is cheap effective and reliable, just pop it in a ziplock or someother waterproof storage (say the plastic case that came with your PocketRocket perhaps, and your good to go. Tom accurately points out having the ability to start and maintain a fire in challenging conditions is esential for any of this to be useful.
    Old School Fire Starters are not fragile and susceptible to leaking or braking and will last a lifetime. Once proficient with it, all you do is toss it in your bag and never have to worry about it until in a time of need.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Redrowen View Post
    Hilleberg tents are not fragile and susceptible to leaking or braking and will last a lifetime. Once proficient with it, all you do is toss it in your bag and never have to worry about it until in a time of need.
    Fixed that for you.
    Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Donde View Post
    Why do people still suggest old school fire starters? A bic lighter is cheap effective and reliable, just pop it in a ziplock or someother waterproof storage (say the plastic case that came with your PocketRocket perhaps, and your good to go. Tom accurately points out having the ability to start and maintain a fire in challenging conditions is esential for any of this to be useful.

    It doesn’t even need fuel for the flint and steel part to work.

  13. #13

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    My bic lighter has worked after I have accidentally put it through the washer and dryer.

  14. #14

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    I like the premise.

    However, the photos are of big and bigger items. Are you kidding? Are you nuts?

    If I had the skill set to make a slick Blog format website, I would have illustrations of gear I recommend at my website, specifically, a lumbar pack or sling pack or a fashion day pack with useful lightweight and low volume gear for an overnight bivy w/shelter or w/out shelter, ready-to-eat food, and add the simple out-and-back "keychain" GPS units.

    For example, the lightweight sleeping quilts available, now, are beautiful enough to use at home as well.

    The CCF foam can circle around the contents of an otherwise shapeless lightweight daypack. The bivy is low-volume. The excellent value lightweight and low volume "extra clothing" packs well.

    I do hope the dayhikers or overnighters or weekend hikers that use their SPOT you obviously think substitutes for every problem get a big fine! Maybe jail!

    I advocated so hard to get PLB's for "the lower 48" and not only Alaska, or pilots, so I feel "emotionally invested" in the matter of abuse.

    I know people won't purchase maps at national parks; it is really something if they look at the big relief map model.

    More affordable "keychain" backtrack GPS units, please.

    If they can responsibly "make fire" with a backpacker stove, good. Otherwise, handwarmer packets strategically placed in pockets.

    If fire, a reflective surface "rescue" sheet to reflect the heat of the fire back to you.

    Yes, "beginners" don't know how to do stuff.

    But, they need to start "somewhere".

    Dayhikers, tourists and travelers, will not purchase a big honking backpack and a big honking first aid kit to "dayhike" away from the parking lot at the national park or a day hike, or out-and-back hike from another public signage trailhead.
    Last edited by Connie; 02-19-2015 at 17:15.

  15. #15

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    Sounds like a good list to get people to buy things...

    Equipment can not replace knowledge.

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    Quote Originally Posted by at_travis View Post
    Equipment can not replace knowledge.
    At one time this was true. It no longer is the case with our technology.

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    Quote Originally Posted by at_travis View Post
    Sounds like a good list to get people to buy things...

    Equipment can not replace knowledge.
    1+


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

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    ME => GA 19AT3 rickb's Avatar
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    A quick review of this poster's history will speak for itself.

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    A compass would be nice. So would water purification.

  20. #20

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    I helped to an extent in a major rescue, involving the first arrest in a national park.

    I assure you, those young people had the best of the best equipment.

    Knowledge is everything, except perhaps wisdom.

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