Everyone loves the excitement of camping and hiking, but nobody likes the feeling of being lost when the light starts to fade. Planning your trip in its totality is very important because it provides an organizational framework that allows you to have a good time without any worries.
Map Your Route
It sounds obvious, but the best way not to get lost when camping or hiking is to know where you are. Nowadays, there are apps and devices you can use to determine your location wherever you are, but they can’t always be relied upon, especially if you encounter a black spot region.
The solution is to bring a traditional OS map with you on your trip. Not only do you need to choose the right app, but you also need to ensure you can read it correctly. If you don’t know how to read an OS map, you can take a short course online or talk to an expert at a local club.
It’s so easy to head off on your camping trip without future planning; after all, it’s existing to get the adventure started, and there’s no reason to think that anything will go wrong. But this is not the most responsible approach. Always ensure you have an emergency contact back at home.
An emergency contact is someone who knows your route and when you are expected to return home. If you run into any unexpected weather conditions or unforeseen circumstances, then your emergency contact will start looking for you sooner than later, increasing your chances.
Know Your Surroundings
Picking your way through a trail or up a hill, it’s easy to look at your feet and let your mind wander. While this is part of the fun of hiking, try to pay some attention to your surroundings as your trek. Look out for notable landmarks and the type of woodland you’re passing through.
If you find yourself in the same areas or back at the same landmarks, it gives you a better idea of where you are and how to get back to the base camp. In combination with your apps, OS maps, and local knowledge, you shouldn’t have any concerns about getting lost on your camping trip.
There is no shortage of gadgets and devices for camping such as the arrow weight calculator; in fact, there is no excuse to get lost nowadays with the amount of technology you can bring. Start with a quality set of radios that you can use to communicate with your party wherever you are, especially if you separate.
Another device that you shouldn’t go camping without is a quality compass. Again, you can find a quality compass on your smartphone, but a phone is not the most reliable device. Smartphone devices can run out of battery when you least expect it and lets you down, but not a compass.
One of the first things you should do when you arrive in your territory is to look for markers in the area; these are prominent features of the surroundings that you can identify and understand where your camp is located. You will be glad you made an effort when returning in the dark.