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Outdoor Survival Skills

The Pros & Cons of Trekking Poles



Hiking has always been a pleasant adventure for the lovers of the sport. It is a sure way to keep fit, enjoy the sights and feels of nature and sometimes, get away from the hustles of life, especially if you have to travel to a location where you can trek all you can, among other fun activities. 

Hiking is quite different from just taking a walk. It is a long vigorous walk on streets, trails (footpaths) or even on slightly mountainous areas. Due to how rigorous that kind of trekking is, you need to be well prepared. You need a guidebook, lots of water, a backpack to contain the essentials, hats and sunglasses to protect yourself from the sun, the right shoes, and a good knife that fits well in your cloth such that you can easily put it in there and take it out in event of emergencies.

Trekking poles are another hiking accessory known to be used by hikers to assist their rhythm and provide stability when hiking on rough terrain. They are also known as hiking sticks, hiking poles or walking poles. While a lot of people admitted enjoying the use of trekking poles during their hiking expeditions, others believe they do not need it. To help your decision making, we shall review the Pros and Cons of having a trekking pole:

The Pros of Trekking Poles

1. Trekking poles reduce the stress upon your joints.

Trailing your way down the slope of a mountain or highland without a trekking pole will however not go without giving you stress and pains to your joints. The same is applicable when you find yourself trying to ascend steep hills or highland. Next time around, go with trekking poles and see the comfort and ease it would bring to you.

2. It engages your arms in healthy exercise.

Because activities surrounding trekking trails mainly involve the legs, it leads to the swelling of the arms, which poses danger to the health. In a situation where the hands are left to dangle while, descending from a mountain it causes poor circulation of blood. Trekking poles keep the hands exercised and give better circulation.

3. Helps to properly balance when moving with trekking poles.

If your two legs can make you stand erect, then having extra two legs of trekking poles would give you more balance. You could be aided by the poles as you try to cross water currents or stand against a high wind. It also gives you adequate balance as you move around loose grounds and snowfields.

4. Trekking poles are always available to help you sustain a good pace.

Hiking with a trekking poles sustains the rhythmic movement of your pace. It makes your strides faster and gives you more endurance to walk longer.

5. The testing of water depth and ice strength is done with trekking poles. 

What a compass is to Captain is what a trekking pole is to a Hiker. He uses it to determine how deep or cold water is so that he does not fall into any mishap. When he is out hiking through the snowfields, he uses trekking poles to navigate his way to his preferred destination. 

6. They serve as multipurpose poles.

Instead of using tent poles to construct your tent, you can as well use trekking poles. Such a dual-use lightens the load that you need to carry from one spot to another.

7. Wild animals are kept at bay with trekking poles.

Coming to a very close range with wild animals is a common experience that most hikers have. Trekking poles can be clashed against each other to produce a repelling sound that sends the wild animal away.

8. Trekking poles can help you to get help quickly.

By lifting and waving the poles, someone far away can easily identify you as a hiker who needs help and come to your aid. This has often been the case of endangered hikers. On the other hand, they may need to stop a car that is approaching from a distance by waving their poles. You too may need to go off-trail to town as well, and then you would need your trekking poles’ signal. 

The Cons of Trekking Poles

1. Trekking poles can be a burden.

Experience has shown that trekking poles can pose a hindrance in many hiking or trailing situations. One may need to embark on a task that does not require the holding of trekking poles. Such situations include climbing trees, the use of ropes, and having to cut a tree branch. In circumstances like this, the carrying of the trekking poles can be burdensome. Hikers who love taking selfies are not left out of this trouble. It equally disallows hikers to take quick shots of in motion pictures.

2. Poles increase your pack load when not in use.

Hikers mostly use trekking poles when they are climbing either a hill or when they are on downhill stretches of trail. Invariably this means that people will need to be carrying it all along when it is temporarily out of use.

3. Trekking poles can be expensive for beginners.

Those on a tight budget can find it expensive to include trekking poles in their kit during their preparations. The cost of trekking poles goes as high as $150 to $200 – depending on their makes and market values.

 4. Trekking poles are not LNT  friendly.

Trekking poles without rubber tip protectors can cause a slight fracture to rock formations, which took nature millions of years to form. Nature lovers can find such scratches concerning for the preservation of nature. 

Final Thought

Having gone through these reviews of the Pros and Cons of having a trekking pole, you can see that it is extremely helpful to have essential tools like trekking poles and a knife in your preparation to go into the wild.  

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Teaching Kids About Wilderness Safety and Survival




Exploring the great outdoors offers numerous benefits for children, from fostering a love of nature to promoting physical activity and learning valuable life skills. However, venturing into the wilderness also comes with inherent risks. Teaching kids about wilderness safety and survival not only empowers them to enjoy outdoor adventures responsibly but also prepares them to handle unexpected situations effectively.

Understanding the Environment

The first step in teaching kids about wilderness safety is helping them understand the environment they’ll be exploring. Discuss potential hazards such as uneven terrain, wildlife encounters, and changes in weather conditions. Encourage curiosity about nature while emphasizing the importance of respecting its power and unpredictability.

Hiking Essentials

Before setting out on a hike, ensure that your children are equipped with the essential gear and knowledge to stay safe. Teach them to dress appropriately for the weather, wear sturdy footwear, and carry essentials such as water, snacks, a map, and a whistle. Emphasize the importance of staying on marked trails and never wandering off alone.

Navigation Skills

Teach children basic navigation skills to help them stay oriented in the wilderness. Show them how to read a map and use a compass, pointing out landmarks and trail markers along the way. Encourage them to pay attention to their surroundings and make mental notes of key features to aid in navigation.

Emergency Procedures

Prepare children for emergencies by teaching them essential survival skills and emergency procedures. Demonstrate how to signal for help using a whistle or mirror, build a shelter using natural materials, and start a fire safely. Discuss what to do in case they become lost or separated from the group, emphasizing the importance of staying calm and staying put to make rescue easier.

Wildlife Safety

Educate children about the wildlife they may encounter in the wilderness and how to coexist safely. Teach them to observe animals from a distance and never approach or attempt to feed them. Discuss how to react in the event of a wildlife encounter, such as backing away slowly from bears or standing tall and making noise to deter smaller animals.

Water Safety

If your outdoor adventures include activities near water, such as swimming or boating, it’s crucial to teach children about water safety. Emphasize the importance of wearing a life jacket, swimming with a buddy, and avoiding strong currents or dangerous water conditions. Teach them how to recognize signs of drowning and how to perform basic water rescue techniques if necessary.

Leave No Trace Principles

Instill in children the importance of practicing Leave No Trace principles to minimize their impact on the environment. Teach them to pack out their trash, stay on designated trails, and avoid disturbing wildlife or natural habitats. Encourage them to appreciate the beauty of nature while also being responsible stewards of the land.

Teaching kids about wilderness safety and survival empowers them to enjoy outdoor adventures responsibly while equipping them with valuable life skills. By helping children understand the environment, providing essential gear and knowledge, and emphasizing the importance of safety and respect for nature, parents can foster a love of the outdoors that lasts a lifetime. Encourage curiosity, exploration, and a sense of adventure, while always prioritizing safety above all else.

How do you teach children about wilderness safety? Leave your tips for other parents in the comments below.

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Family-Friendly Wilderness Survival Skills: Navigating Nature Together



When it comes to venturing into the wilderness as a family, being equipped with essential survival skills can turn what might seem like a daunting prospect into a thrilling adventure. From navigating rugged terrain to building shelters and finding sustenance, knowing how to handle various wilderness scenarios not only ensures safety but also fosters a deeper connection with nature. Here, we’ll delve into some family-friendly wilderness survival skills that are both practical and empowering for outdoor enthusiasts of all ages.

Navigating Nature’s Maze: The Art of Orientation

Wilderness navigation skills are absolutely necessary for survival. Teach your family members how to read a map and use a compass. Turn it into a game, plotting imaginary routes or exploring nearby trails. Understanding how to interpret natural landmarks, such as mountains or rivers, can serve as invaluable guideposts when technology fails or trails grow faint.

Shelter from the Storm: Building Safe Havens


Constructing a shelter in the wilderness isn’t just about protection from the elements; it’s also an opportunity to foster teamwork and resourcefulness. Encourage your family to work together to build a shelter using readily available materials like branches, leaves, and logs. Even practicing with a simple tarp or emergency blanket in the backyard can instill confidence and prepare everyone for unexpected situations.

Quenching Thirst: Finding and Purifying Water Sources

woman taking water from forest spring

Water is essential for survival, but finding safe sources in the wilderness can be challenging. Teach your family how to locate water sources such as streams or springs, and emphasize the importance of purifying water before drinking. Show them how to boil water over a campfire or use portable water filtration systems. It’s not just about quenching thirst; it’s about ensuring hydration without compromising health.

Mastering the Flames: The Art of Fire Building

Building a fire in the wilderness is not only a practical skill but also a primal experience that connects us to our ancestors. Teach your family the basics of fire building: selecting dry tinder, arranging kindling, and patiently nurturing the flames. Show them how to practice fire safety, such as keeping a safe distance from combustible materials and extinguishing fires completely before leaving a campsite.

Harmonizing with Wildlife: Respectful Coexistence

Encounters with wildlife are part of the allure of wilderness exploration, but they also require caution and respect. Educate your family about local wildlife, teaching them to recognize signs of activity and respond appropriately. Instill in them a sense of awe and appreciation for the natural world while emphasizing the importance of maintaining a safe distance and avoiding confrontations.

Equipping your family with wilderness survival skills is not just about preparing for the worst-case scenario; it’s about empowering them to explore and thrive in the great outdoors. By teaching navigation techniques, shelter-building skills, water purification methods, fire-building basics, and wildlife awareness, you’re not only ensuring their safety but also nurturing a lifelong love for nature and adventure. So, gather your loved ones, pack your gear, and embark on unforgettable journeys into the heart of the wilderness, where every challenge becomes an opportunity to learn and grow together.

Do you practice wilderness survival with your family? What do you do? Leave your pointers in the comments below.

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Outdoor Survival Skills

Banding Together In Times Of Crisis: The Important of Survival Communities




In times of crisis, whether natural disasters, economic downturns, or other emergencies, fostering community resilience is paramount for families to navigate challenges successfully. Building strong bonds and collaborating with neighbors can provide essential support networks and resources. In this article, we’ll explore strategies for families to work together and contribute to community resilience during times of crisis.

Establish Communication Channels

Clear and reliable communication channels are essential for coordinating efforts and sharing critical information within the community. Establish methods such as neighborhood watch groups, social media networks, or communication apps to stay connected with neighbors. Create contact lists with essential contact information for each household and designate emergency communication protocols.

Collaborate on Emergency Preparedness

Encourage collaboration among families in preparing for potential emergencies. Organize community-wide preparedness events or workshops to share knowledge, resources, and skills. Pooling resources such as emergency supplies, tools, and equipment can enhance the collective readiness of the community. Develop evacuation plans and designate meeting points in case of evacuation orders.

Share Skills and Resources

Identify the skills, expertise, and resources available within the community and leverage them to support one another. Encourage neighbors to share their knowledge of gardening, first aid, construction, or other relevant skills. Create a network for exchanging goods and services, such as food, water, tools, and shelter materials. By collaborating and supporting each other, families can address challenges more effectively.

Establish Mutual Aid Networks

Establish mutual aid networks to provide assistance and support to vulnerable members of the community during times of crisis. Identify individuals or families who may need extra help, such as elderly residents, people with disabilities, or single parents. Coordinate efforts to check on their well-being, provide assistance with essential tasks, or evacuate them safely if necessary.

Organize Community Resilience Projects

Prepper Community

Engage in community resilience projects that enhance the overall preparedness and resilience of the neighborhood. Examples include community gardens, rainwater harvesting systems, emergency shelters, and neighborhood watch programs. Work together on initiatives that promote self-sufficiency, sustainability, and disaster resilience.

Foster Social Connections

Building strong social connections within the community fosters a sense of belonging and solidarity, which is crucial during times of crisis. Organize regular neighborhood gatherings, potlucks, or block parties to strengthen relationships and build trust among neighbors. Encourage open communication, empathy, and mutual support to create a resilient community fabric.

Participate in Training and Exercises

Participate in training sessions and emergency preparedness exercises as a community to enhance readiness and coordination. Practice scenarios such as earthquake drills, fire evacuation drills, or first aid training exercises. Evaluate and refine emergency plans based on lessons learned from simulations and real-life experiences.

Engage with Local Authorities and Organizations

Collaborate with local authorities, emergency responders, and community organizations to enhance resilience efforts. Stay informed about emergency protocols, evacuation routes, and available resources in your area. Advocate for community resilience initiatives and participate in local planning committees or advisory boards.

By working together and building strong community connections, families can significantly enhance their resilience and ability to withstand crises. By establishing communication channels, collaborating on preparedness efforts, sharing skills and resources, and fostering social connections, families can contribute to building a resilient community that supports its members in times of need. Remember, resilience is built through collective action and mutual support.

Are you a part of a bigger survival community? If not, do you plan on changing that? Leave your thoughts in the comments below. 


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