We are now onto our second year of covid, by now if you haven't gone completely crazy from staying inside, you’ve probably gotten pretty smart on how to stay active. Right now millions of Canadians are getting outside and rediscovering cycling, skiing, skating, and hiking. I don’t know if I miss the gym as much as I thought I would (if anything I think I just miss the steam room). I wonder if, like me, you’ve rediscovered that nothing beats the fresh air of a Canadian adventure.
Adventure tourism is growing in response to the need to get outside. Shows like Alone or SurvivorMan have put the idea of seeking the wild places into the mind of many of us wanting to test our skills and abilities. In this article we are going to give you an essential list of equipment you will take with you on your next Canadian Adventure.
Assessing the Risk
Any trip away from your couch requires some amount of risk management. For example, when you drive, how fast are you going? Did you put on your seatbelt? Is the road covered in ice? Do you have air in your tires? We navigate these decisions without much thought every day. When we venture off the beaten path risk management can be a life saver. What we take with us can make a big difference between a situation requiring rescue or just a night of unplanned/inconvenient camping. The first and most important tool is the gray matter between your ears. Having stuff is no substitution for skills. Next is a plan. Tell someone where you are going and when you are expected back. So they can send in the cavalry when you don’t show.
Safety and Survival
We want you to be prepared for the unexpected or to help someone else who is in distress.
Warm Weather Essentials
- Water (1 liter per hour of activity is a good rule)
- Hat and sunglasses
- Sunscreen or a UV shirt
Cold Weather Essentials
- Water (1 liter per hour of activity) in an insulated container
- Neck gaiter (spare)
- Hand Warmers
We recommend to always have a few items with you that will help you out in an emergency. These items will transcend various activities.
Sometimes these are known as The 9 Cs of Survival.
- Cutting tool- swiss army knife, multi tool or belt knife, folding saw. Whatever works for you.
- Combustion device- lighter, matches or a Ferrocerium rod (metal match)
- Cover--starts with the proper clothing for the weather and activity. A lightweight rain jacket jammed into the bottom of your Camelback never hurts.
- Container-something to carry water in.
- Cordage - paracord is always popular and can hold 550lbs. One never knows when you might have to tie up a sleeping Sasquatch.
- Cotton bandana-need to blow your nose? Forgot your facemask at home? A super handy item.
- Cargo Tape- Aka: Duct tape/Gorilla tape, its what holds the world together.
- Compass and map- you’ll probably be out of cell reception or the battery just died.
- Candling/signaling device- Its dark in ‘dem ‘dare woods at night. And a whistle is better than yelling for help.
With these items and a little ingenuity one can get through an unexpected inconvenience. This list can be added to depending on the type and duration of your adventure. Other things that you might want to consider are a space blanket (multi uses) a BooBoo kit (first aid) spare glasses if you need them, extra layers of clothes. Snackage!
- Tube & patch kit
- Tire levers
- Air pump and or CO2 inflator if the bugs are biting.
- Bicycle specific multi tool
- Spare chain link
- Spare derailleur hanger ( the sacrificial piece of metal that connects your rear derailleur to the frame)
I like to keep all this stuff in a small backpack or fanny pack.
We hope you have some awesome adventures this year. Where do you plan on heading this season? Leave us a comment down below.
Stay safe and have fun!