Unlike the indoors, where one is limited to gaming consoles and tabletop games, the outdoors provide unlimited opportunities to have fun and bonding with the ecosystem. Activities like hiking also promote your overall well-being. Scientists even suggest that a simple walk in nature can boost mental health, relieving stress, depression, and anxiety.
However, nature can also be a ruthless beast. For starters, the risk of accidents and other similar issues is relatively higher. If you are not careful, your fun can easily get cut short by a sudden trip to the ER. To avoid all this, we have prepared several practical tips to help you stay safe out there.
Do Your Homework
The first and most important tip is doing your homework about the activity or place in question. This is where you need to make calls and check Reddit and other forums that can provide helpful information to help you prepare for the great adventure ahead.
Inquire about any safety precautions that you need to be aware of before your trip. If it’s an activity that requires spending the night, check to see potential sleeping locations and other amenities that you may need.
As Karyn of Smart Exploring points out, a great outdoor experience starts with planning. Ignore this phase, and you may find yourself learning stuff the hard way.
Get The Right Gear
Once you get finer details about the place you’re visiting and the activities you’ll be doing, finding gear for the occasion becomes so much easier.
The first items you need to worry about are the basics. This includes your clothes, boots, sleeping items, etc. Depending on the activity you are going to do, you may also want to purchase or hire safety gear like helmets.
Remember to carry some essential medications and anything else you may need if you have allergies or special medical conditions.
There are many resources online that provide a checklist of virtually all outdoor activities.
Travel With A Friend
Besides making your trip memorable, a friend can also come through for you in case something terrible happens. If you are going to a very remote location, the best thing to do is bring along at least two other friends. This way, if something bad happens, there’ll be an extra person who can go looking for help.
It’s also critical to have at least one other person at home know about your plans. This could be your parents, sibling, or a close friend. Tell them about the place you’re going to, the activities you are looking forward to, and the details on where you’ll be sleeping, how you’ll be traveling, and who you’ll be with.
Be Physically Prepared For The Challenge
It’s vital to prepare yourself for the physical challenge ahead, especially if you are going for exhausting activities like hiking. Use the few weeks or days leading up to the trip to train and improve your fitness.
If you go hiking with a group of friends, make sure the pace caters to everyone in the group. The fitter guys should consider their weaker friends and tone down their pace. Alternatively, you can get guides or experts and split your group into two. The bottom line is ensuring nobody is left alone in the trail.
Mind The Weather
It can be disappointing when you plan for an activity for weeks only to cancel it last minute due to sudden weather changes. But that’s the right thing to do. Don’t get too desperate for a few hours of fun and ignore clear signs of unfavorable weather.
Make use of weather apps and websites before stepping outside. And if you are already out there and the weather changes abruptly, find shelter and follow emergency protocols right away.
Know Your Limit
Remember to leave your ego at home when going for an outdoor adventure. Don’t push beyond your limit to prove a point. This can only hurt you and ruin the entire experience for everyone else.
This is especially important for watersports and other dangerous and physically demanding activities. It’s good to push your limits, but be wise enough to know and admit when your body is done. There is absolutely no shame in that.
Learn Standard First Aid
Learn some basic first aid and carry a kit with you at all times. The good news is you learn some simple first aid procedures online in just a couple of days or hours. Needless to say that these skills will remain useful long after you’re done with the trip.
- Stay In Contact
It’s important to stay in constant contact with your loved ones when you are out there. It’s good for your safety, plus it gives your family and friends peace of mind.
Safety is the top priority when it comes to outdoor activities. Do not let the urge to have a “crazy experience” overshadow the importance of staying safe.