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First Aid Tips for Backpackers

April 28, 2019

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There’s nothing quite like going outside, getting some exercise and just enjoying nature. Whether you have been backpacking for years or are still learning the basics, you know that feeling well.

As a backpacker, you also know how important it is to be safe every time you go out. From packing all of the right gear to researching the area where you’ll be hiking, there’s more to this activity than walking trails and seeing the sights.

An essential skill for backpacking is first aid training. When you include first aid items in your pack and know how to respond to certain situations, you can help keep yourself and others around you safer when you’re out. Here are three first aid tips to remember while backpacking.

1. Pack a Kit

If you’re out and get hurt, you wouldn’t want to find yourself without any first aid gear. Including a first aid kit along with your backpacking camp materials, even a basic one, can make a huge difference in case an accident occurs.

Some first aid basics to include in your kit are:

  • Bandages
  • Antibiotic ointment
  • Butterfly closures
  • Dressing pads
  • Rolled gauze
  • Tweezers
  • Adhesive tape
  • Splint
  • Aloe vera gel
  • Ibuprofen or Aspirin
  • Immodium
  • Hydrocortisone cream
  • Latex gloves

If you have extra medical or first aid training, or if you’re going on a longer trip, you may want to pack even more items than this. The more that you’re able to pack for your trip, the better prepared you’ll be for any situation.

2. Learn Basic First Aid and Wilderness First Aid

No matter the severity of an accident or situation, anything from a splinter to a sprained ankle will affect your trip. Even if you’re only a mile into an afternoon hike, having even the most basic first aid training can be a huge help.

Taking a few first aid training courses can save someone’s life. In a basic first aid course, you’ll learn CPR, how to treat burns, poisoning, spinal injuries and a number of other skills.

It’s also smart to take a wilderness first aid course. If you backpack out to remote areas, emergency responders need time to get out to you. Knowing how to treat other emergencies that are specific to the outdoors, like hypothermia and altitude-related problems, are key in responding effectively to any scenario.

3. Be Prepared for Anything

Our best backpacker first aid tip is to always be prepared for anything. By packing the right equipment and educating yourself on how to respond to different emergencies, no matter how small, you’re much more likely to come out of them safely.

But that’s just one part of it — while you’re out on your trip, you need to keep an eye out for anything that could cause a dangerous situation. Watching your step to avoid rolling your ankle, examining plants before stepping off the path to avoid poison ivy or other plants like it and bringing the gear to keep you safe throughout the day and overnight are important for any trip.

If you’re planning a backpack hammock camping trip, you need to bring all of the right gear. At DutchWare, we carry an excellent selection of camping and backpacking equipment, especially our customizable options. Browse through our inventory today to pick up what you need to make your next trip a great one.

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