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across the state, or making a short fl ight; survival situations happen, and can happen quickly. In fact, most survival situations happen to folks who didn’t expect trouble and therefore, didn’t plan for it. They often fi nd themselves thinking, “I’m only going to be gone a few hours.” They also fail to tell anyone where they are going. Finally, people more often than not don’t bring any- thing with them that would help them out of the jam they fi nd themselves in. If you enjoy the outdoors, fl y, or drive long stretches of


isolated roadways, you need to be prepared for a survival situation. It can and does happen to anyone, at any time. So what do you do? How do you prepare for such an event? Well, there are just a few basic things you need to keep in mind and a few simple tasks to accomplish to keep your- self alive in a tough spot. Before setting out, even on a short hike, let someone


know where you are going. If possible, let them know when you will be back, and call them when you return. If you take a Friday afternoon off to go hiking, then fall down and break your leg at the bottom of a ravine, you might not be missed until work Monday morning. You will have been incapacitated and exposed to the elements for 36 hours before anyone starts looking for you. In cold weather, that could prove deadly. So, let someone know. On or in your vehicle, leave a note, even on the dash. It should state who you are, what you are wearing, where you went, why, and when you expect to return. A park ranger will notice a car parked at a trailhead for a day or more and check on it. That’s why it’s important. Whether you were elk hunting or looking for mushrooms, a search party will be able to narrow their search to the most likely areas for those activities based on their knowledge of the local area.


Now What? Okay, so you screwed up and now you are in a survival


situation. What next? First of all, get yourself out of dan- ger: sinking car, burning aircraft, swift water, falling rocks, attacking bear, etc. Stop the danger and then check your- self out. Stop any bleeding immediately. You will need to keep as much blood inside you as possible. You can’t put it back in! Direct pressure on the wound works best. Main- tain pressure and don’t keep checking. Don’t remove any dressings you have applied. Elevate the injured part if you can. Use a tourniquet on an arterial bleed. Stabilize any fractures by gently realigning a broken limb and splinting in place. Don’t move if you think you may have broken your back or pelvis. If a venomous snake has bitten you, calm down. It my hurt like heck, and you will feel the effects, but most healthy people in the United States don’t die from any of the venomous snakes present in our country. Don’t cut across the bites. Don’t suck out the venom. Many survival scenarios start as the result of an injury or medical emergency, so be prepared by having fi rst aid supplies and some basic training on how to use them. There are a


lot of wonderful fi rst aid and trauma products out there, but many can be improvised once you


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hether you are out on a short day hike, jogging, canoeing and riding your ATV, hunting white tail, driving


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