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Lost in the Woods


No one begins a wilderness adventure expecting to get lost. Any yet, every year, a significant number of people get lost or stranded in our nation’s woods. Every hiker that enters the wilderness must know the answer to the question, “What if I get lost?”

Search and rescue professionals recommend the following tips for someone who is lost.

  • Stop walking!
  • Draw attention to yourself safely. Blow your whistle or yell back if you hear your name called. Make yourself and your camp visible from the air.
  • Keep calm. Use the survival gear in your Ten Essentials* kit to get comfortable while you wait for rescue. Stay warm, dry and visible.

Note: Rescue personnel will normally suspend search efforts during the night. But stay put. The search will resume again after the sun rises.

*Ten Essentials resource:

Adventure Medical Personal Essentials First-Aid Kit

Adventure Medical Personal Essentials First-Aid Kit

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2 Responses to “Lost in the Woods”

  1. Nick Says:

    Have to admit I have been ‘lost’ on one trip or the other (obviously I got back to add a note here).

    Best piece of equipment I have kept on my list is a good friend or two that love the outdoors as much as I do.

    Alone is nice, sharing is often better.

  2. frank m. Says:

    The rule of thumb I always follow is simple: If you venture out away from camp even for a short stroll, ALWAYS take a backpack with first aid and emergency supplies.

    That’s why I started buy and selling long term food, good for 25+ years. Its always in our venture packs along with the usual emergency essentials.

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