Successfully and safely get through any hiking accident with these easy, effective wilderness survival tips and tactics! Keep reading to find out more.
5 Wilderness Survival Tips to Get Through a Hiking Accident
1. Turmeric for Cuts
Cuts and wounds are to be expected when you’re hiking. Shrubs, branches, and rocks, among others, could pierce your skin and cause a wound.
Leaving wounds open exposes it to harmful elements, especially when you’re out in the mountains. Usually, wounds naturally heal on their own after you wash them with soap and water.
But when you’re far away from home, you probably won’t have access to these.
What you can use as a substitute is turmeric powder. Curcumin is an active ingredient found in turmeric that can help fight oxidation and reduce inflammation.
- Rub the turmeric powder on the wound, and then let it sit. Doing so should keep the wound from getting infected for the remainder of your journey.
- Once you get back to camp, wash the wounded area with running water, and then disinfect it.
- Lastly, cover with a bandage.
2. Water and Asparagus for Dehydration
One of the most important wilderness survival skills any hiker should know is how to combat dehydration. Keep in mind that the body loses water through physical activity so it’s not impossible to feel dehydrated in the middle of a hiking trip.
Some symptoms of dehydration include:
- Mouth dryness
- If you feel these dehydration symptoms while hiking, the first thing you need to do is to drink water. Don’t chug the whole water bottle, but rather, take small, frequent sips.
- Take a break under the shade of trees or rocks. It doesn’t really matter where; just make sure you’re away from the heat of the sun.
To further alleviate the symptoms of dehydration, you can eat asparagus. Bring a few sticks with you and eat them when you feel like dehydration is about to hit.
Its fiber content will help the body retain more water so you don’t end up peeing all the liquids you just drank. Also, it can help lower your overall body temperature when you’re exposed in the heat of the sun.
3. Baking Soda for Poison Ivy Rash
Poison Ivy Definition: A dangerous plant that could cause contact dermatitis. It has an almond-shaped leaf that ranges from light to dark green, depending on its maturity.
The main culprit for poison ivy rash is urushiol, its most active compound. This compound is so toxic that even a drop of it could harm 500 individuals.
However, if you do come in contact with one, don’t panic! You can still remedy the itch.
- Wash the infected area with soap and water.
- Apply a baking soda mixture to relieve the itchiness. It should have a paste-like consistency and be composed of three teaspoons of baking soda and one teaspoon of water.
- Once you get back to camp, fill a tub with water, pour in about half a cup of baking soda, and then submerge your body in it for about 30 minutes.
4. Shield for Bad Weather
It’s a given that hikers shouldn’t push through with their hiking plans if the weather is terrible. It would put them at risk of getting sick, injured, or in the worst case, dying.
But things don’t always go as planned, especially when you’re out in an unknown forest or trail. So what do you do when the weather suddenly turns bad in the middle of a hiking session?
- First, cover yourself in a thick, water-repellent jacket. This won’t keep you completely dry, but it should at least maintain warmth and prevent the development of a cold or fever.
- Then, decide whether you should go back to camp or take shelter for a few minutes. If the trail is too slippery and dangerous, then seek shelter under thick trees. But be careful not to get under anything that might lead to an avalanche.
- Lastly, stay with your companions. In times like this, it’s best to stick together and think of effective ways to get through the storm.
5. R.I.C.E. for Sprained Ankles
If you sprain your ankle in the middle of a hiking trip, it’s important to go back to camp where you can get the necessary treatment.
Ask help from your companions, especially if the trail is slippery. If you’re alone, take a sturdy stick and use it as a cane when going back down to safety.
Once you arrive at your camp, follow the R.I.C.E. technique.
- Rest: Avoid doing anything physically strenuous for the next two days. Do not attempt to continue hiking with a sprained ankle. Instead of losing weight and stimulating better overall health, you’ll only end up putting your life at risk.
- Ice: Apply ice on your sprained ankle for 15-20 minutes every two to three hours.
- Compression: Wrap your ankle with an elastic medical bandage. Make sure it’s tight enough to prevent the swelling but loose enough to allow proper blood flow.
- Elevation: Raise your injured leg whenever possible.
To hasten your recovery, try massaging your sprain with garlic juice and coconut oil. Their anti-inflammatory properties may prevent your ankle from swelling up.
- Take two teaspoons of garlic juice and coconut oil, mix them together.
- Massage the paste on your ankle for 10 minutes.
Overall, the best way to prepare for any emergency situation is to bring a wilderness survival kit. Brush up on your wilderness survival skills so you’ll know exactly what to do in case of trouble.
Also, these emergencies become exponentially harder when you’re alone, so as much as possible, always bring a friend with you. Preferably it should be someone with survival skills training so they can cover for you when things go south.
What are your hiking essentials? Share your wilderness survival tips with us in the comments section below!