There are a lot of potential hazards that can happen while on your camping trip. Learning the most common (and uncommon) camping dangers can help you eliminate any potential threats before they even happen. In this article you are going to learn exactly how to stay safe camping, because at the end of the day – the worst possible threat can be other humans rather than wild animals.
As mentioned above, often times Mother Nature is on your side, the worst possible threat can actually be other humans. Knowing how to defend yourself and your family can be the most valuable skill you can have while in the outdoors.
I’m not telling you to go spend years of training to be a black belt. A 9mm Pistol is perfectly fine to help defend you and your loved ones.
Now because of gun laws and things like that, not everyone can get their hands on these deadly handles.
If you can fight your way out of a pub brawl, this may be all the skills you need to defend yourself. If you can get a hold of a bushcraft knife – that is a good self-defense weapon.
Some other self-defense items are as follows (Perfect for females):
- Swift (hard) kick to the nuts, and you’re away laughing, lol
- Handmade spear
- Pepper spray
- Even better, taser
- Often times all you need is your voice (a loud scream) to ward off an attacker
#2 Don’t Camp Alone
Similar to the above reasons, if any problems arise you have a buddy or 2 there to help you. If you’re going camping/hiking even for a day trip it is highly recommended you take a friend for safety purposes. This isn’t just for human attackers, this can be for a wide range of reasons, such as:
- You may slip and fall down a cliff
- You could get an injury preventing you from walking
- More than 1 person can usually scare off dangerous wildlife
- If someone’s seriously injured, someone will have to go get help
And the list goes on. Bottom line, camp/hike with a friend or family member to avoid potential disasters from happening, it’s not worth risking!
#3 Emergency Phone
Don’t bring your new Iphone on a camping trip just so you can go on Facebook, no, bring an emergency phone (usually with nothing else on it), basically this phone will just be used for emergency purposes only. No games or internet access, which will stop you from having outdoor fun.
#4 First Aid Kit
Never, ever go camping without bringing a basic first aid kit. As I have said time and time again, cuts, burns and scrapes will happen. Stopping minor open wounds from getting infected can be the most important thing you could ever do.
#5 Handheld Radios
You had fun with Walky Talkies when you were a kid, so why stop using them now? Well you don’t. Keeping handheld radios on you at all times can mean the difference between life and death, a call for help is just a radio contact away if you’re in serious danger. Remember that and make sure you take some! Even better if everyone has one.
#6 The Fire
In the outdoors, a campfire is a strong sense of security. Keep this blazing for as long as possible and easily ward off bears and other dangerous animals in the area.
#7 Eat Away From Your Campsite
If you don’t want wild animals coming into your campsite looking for food – especially while you’re sleeping, a simple tip to follow is to cook and eat your meal a mile or 2 away from your campsite, that way bears will be more likely to go searching in that area, and NOT in your campsite.
Furthermore, make sure all flammable rubbish is burned right away, and all other rubbish is disposed of properly.
Ways to store your food and rubbish:
- In a bear-resistant container
- RV, car, or other hard-sealed vehicle
- Hang 10 feet above the ground, 4 feet away from a tree
- Electrified enclosure
#8 Check Your Equipment
Make sure all your gear is in working order before heading out on your trip. Don’t check it after you’ve arrived at your campsite. The last thing you need is your valuable gear breaking at the worst possible time, when you’re about to use it.
#9 Pitch Your Tent In A Safe Place
Know the best places to pitch your tent, which is on flat ground. People think the best possible place to put a tent is in a valley or a ‘ditch’ protecting them from the wind and rain. However, this can get very dangerous if you wake up to a flash flood with your campsite washed away!
Need a safe tent? Check out these ones!
#10 Let Someone Know
It will be in your best interest to let a responsible adult know where you’re going, who you’ll be going with, and how many days you plan on camping for. The primary reason for this, is so – if you and your crew aren’t back at the time outlined, the adult can assume yous are in trouble and will get help.
It’s important to let that person know if you’ll stay an extra few days.
#11 Keep Children Close
Keeping the children close to you at all times lets you keep an eye on them, so yous all have a safe and enjoyable trip.
A little preparedness on your part can help a huge deal in this. Tell them if they ever get lost to just stand there until someone comes for help, don’t go wandering off into the forest to try find their way back.
#12 Your Strongest Weapon Against Wildlife
Be loud while you walk/hike around the forest, sing or clap your hands. Dangerous wildlife will hear your presence and most likely wander off in the opposite direction.
#13 Often Check Your Equipment
You can avoid getting bitten by checking your sleeping bag, tent, or any equipment you’re about to use, so make sure there’s no scorpions or snakes sitting in them waiting.
A rule of thumb: Check every piece of your gear before using it, and make sure you look where you step avoiding rattlesnakes and other camouflaged animals.
#14 Weather/Temperature Changes
Temperatures can change rapidly, especially from hot to cold. Without being prepared enough, can cause you or your closed ones to get hypothermia. Make sure you bring the correct clothing + extra for sudden changes in the weather.
I have a guide showing you exactly how to keep you warm for sudden, deep temperature dips: I highly recommend you check it out.
#15 Last but not least – Water
Bacteria is a real thing believe it or not. Avoid getting intestinal infections by NOT drinking from rivers, lakes, streams.
Drink safe water from the campground tap. However if you have no access to a tap, and you’re solely relying on Mother Nature for your fluid intake, make sure you treat the water with a water filtration system or treatment tablets.
If you still have none of these above, try find the cleanest water possible and boil it for a constant 3-5 minutes to kill all bacteria and organisms.
Camping with Mother Nature is a great vacation to choose, however you must make sure you’re staying safe at ALL times. Dangerous situations can arise suddenly and without you or your crew being prepared, can (in some cases) be fatal.
Avoid a fun camping trip turning into a tragedy by following the steps outlined above and I promise you you’ll have a wonderful vacation and everyone’s going to have a great time.