When we go into the wild we take a risk! This makes us
feel ALIVE. Taking this risk is only FUN when we stay
healthy and safe.
Nobody likes to think about what could go wrong! Don’t
worry. I'm only covering the BASICS. Take a moment to
review this information. I want you to enjoy your Romantic
Getaway. You can prevent mood-killing situations with
a little safety awareness.
Top 3 Safety Issues
Ouch… Nothing Romantic about crispy RED skin… It hurts!
Use sunscreen. When you are outside all day you are at
risk of sunburn. Remember the sun is more intense at higher
elevations. Wear a hat to protect your face, neck and
ears. Wear sunglasses with high altitudes, snowy conditions
and when on the water. You can sunburn your eyes!
If you do sunburn your skin - keep the area clean and
covered. Apply lots of Aloe Vera gel. Stay in the shade!
Cover with loose fitting clothes.
Minor burns happen. The most frequent camping burns are
caused from campfires, hot stoves and pot handles. Pain
from minor burns can be alleviated immediately with cool
Seek medical attention if you experience serious burns
that blister. Clean the burn area with soap and water.
Apply anesthetic or Aloe Vera gel to alleviate the pain.
You know what these are!
Blisters are caused by friction, heat and sweating. Beware
of blisters especially when hiking. Proper fitting footwear
is the best defense against blisters.
Some other helpful tips...
- Socks: Use
quality wool hiking socks.
These are ultra-thin tight socks. Wear the sock-liners
under your thicker outer wool socks. Sock-liners minimize
friction on your skin.
- Stay Clean:
Be sure to remove debris that works its way into you
boots or shoes.
- Stay Dry:
Avoid hiking for extended periods with wet feet.
If you feel a HOT SPOT stop immediately and take care of
your foot. Take off your shoe and check it out. If the spot
is red, but no blister, then apply Moleskin directly to
the spot. (Moleskin is a soft adhesive padding available
at your local drugstore)
If you already have a blister cut a donut out of Molefoam
and surround the blister. Use the adhesive Moleskin to secure
the foam donut. (Molefoam is thicker padding also available
at your drugstore)
If your blister is broken then clean it! This is an open
wound. Use soap and water. Apply Second Skin to the blister
and cover with adhesive Moleskin. (Second Skin is a soothing
hydrogel dressing available... again at your drugstore)
These TERRIBLE injuries occur when the ligaments in the
joint are suddenly overstretched. The most commonly sprained
joints are the wrist, knee and ankle. If you do experience
a sprain while camping remember what to do using the acronym
- Rest: The
sprain should be rested. No additional force should
be applied on site of the sprain. If, for example, the
sprain were an ankle sprain, then walking should be
kept to a minimum.
- Ice: Ice should
be applied immediately to the sprain to minimize swelling
and ease pain. It can be applied for 20-30 minutes at
a time, 3-4 times a day. Ice can be combined with a
wrapping to minimize swelling and provide support.
Dressings, bandages, or ace-wraps should be used to
immobilize the sprain and provide support.
Keeping the sprained joint elevated above heart level
will also help to minimize swelling.
You can AVOID Sprains! Use caution in these high-risk situations:
- Loose Rock:
Rocks slide and shift upon themselves. This can create
a dangerous situation. Walk slowly and carefully!
It is never recommended to make your own trail. Doing
so can damage the ecosystem. However, sometimes you
need to explore. Watch your footing! Loose soil and
rodent holes are ankle-busters. Also walk a safe distance
behind the person ahead. You don’t want branches to
snap in your face.
- Fallen Trees:
Crossing over fallen trees is fun! That is until they
shift or break. Test the log with a hard push. Make
certain it’s not rotten or loose.
Humans are attracted to moving water. Rivers are COOL!
Beware of loose rock, mud and wet sand… you can easily
lose your footing. Riverbanks are notorious for collapsing.
REMEMBER: When traversing or walking along a riverbank always
unbuckle your pack snaps. If you do go down you DO NOT want