What to do when you’re lost in the wilderness
1. Don’t panic.
2. Look for a water source and drink plenty of water.
3. Find shelter and build a fire.
4. Signal for help.
5. Forage for food.
6. Travel downhill if you can’t find your way back to civilization.
7. Stay calm and think clearly to increase your chances of survival in the wild!
How to find food and water
1. Berries, fruits, and vegetables are good sources of water.
2. Insects and small animals can also provide hydration.
3. Plants with leaves that are green and have a waxy coating are often safe to eat raw.
4. If you’re in doubt about a plant, cook it before consuming.
5. In an emergency, you can drink your own urine if it’s clear and hasn’t been mixed with feces.
6. Collect dew from plants in the morning for another source of clean water.
7. Rainwater is also safe to drink if you collect it properly.
8. Snow can be melted and consumed, but be sure to filter it first to remove impurities.
How to start a fire without matches
1. Use a magnifying glass or lens to focus the sun’s rays onto a piece of tinder.
2. Create friction by rubbing two pieces of wood together.
3. Use a battery and steel wool or a 9-volt battery and a cotton ball to create sparks.
4. If you have a lighter, use that instead!
5. In an emergency, you can also use urine to start a fire.
What to do if you’re injured
1. Clean and bandage the wound as soon as possible to prevent infection.
2. Splint any broken bones to immobilize them and promote healing.
3. Apply pressure to stop bleeding from major wounds.
4. Elevate the injured limb if possible to reduce swelling.
5. If you’re in shock, lay down and elevate your feet.
6. Drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration.
7. If you can’t treat the injury yourself, wait for help to arrive.
How to signal for help
1. If you have a cellphone, call 911 or send a text message for help.
2. Make noise by whistling or shouting to attract attention.
3. Build a fire and make smoke by burning green leaves or moss.
4. Spell out “HELP” with rocks or sticks on the ground.
5. Wave an article of clothing or a mirror in the air to catch the sun’s rays and reflect them.
6. Flash a flashlight at night to signal for help.
7. If you’re in the water, swim toward the shore and wave your arms to attract attention.
8. Hang a brightly colored piece of clothing from a high point if you can’t reach the ground.
How to stay safe from wild animals
1. Don’t approach or try to feed wild animals.
2. If you’re attacked, fight back and make as much noise as possible.
3. Make yourself look as big as possible by waving your arms or holding up a jacket.
4. Try to scare the animal away by making loud noises or throwing objects at it.
5. Climb a tree if you can’t escape and wait for the animal to lose interest.
6. In an emergency, use pepper spray or bear mace if you have it.
7. Never run from a wild animal–it might trigger its natural instinct to chase and attack you!
What to do if you get injured while camping or hiking
1. Stay calm and assess the situation.
2. If you can, call for help or hike out to find cell reception.
3. If you’re unable to move, make yourself as comfortable as possible and wait for help to arrive.
4. Drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration, and eat if you have food available.
5. Apply first aid to any injuries and splint any broken bones.
6. Try to stay warm and dry, and protect yourself from the elements as best you can.
7. Remain patient and wait for rescuers to arrive!
What to do if you get lost while backpacking
1. Don’t panic! Stay calm and think about your options.
2. If you have a map and compass, try to orient yourself and figure out where you are.
3. If you don’t have a map or compass, look for landmarks that might help you determine your location.
4. Once you know where you are, decide whether it’s best to stay put or keep moving.
5. If you decide to move, make sure you leave behind a note or some other form of communication so others will know where you went.
6. Make sure you’re drinking plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration, and eat if you have food available.
7. Try to stay warm and dry, and protect yourself from the elements as best you can.
8. Remain patient and wait for rescuers to arrive!