American Bushman

"If you would not be forgotten as soon as you are dead, either write things worth reading or do things worth writing." —Benjamin Franklin

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Gearing up

Next Thursday (7/6) I will be taking the kids to Starved Rock State Park in Utica, IL for hiking, playing, and a picnic. This means gearing up for not only myself but the kids as well.

Some important items for the kids to have with them at all times when in the woods or on the trail:

  1. Whistle--My personal favorite is the Fox 40 Mini
  2. Small flashlight
  3. Signal Mirror--2"X3" and weighs just ounces
  4. 2 Lightsticks--peace of mind if he/she is afraid of the dark

Both kids have the walking sticks I carved last week also.

If you're going hiking with kids make sure they understand what to do in the event they get separated from the group.

  1. Find a tree
  2. Sit down
  3. Blow your whistle 3 times
  4. Wait a few seconds
  5. Blow your whistle 3 times again
  6. Repeat steps 3-5 every few minutes
  7. If the light is fading fire up a lightstick
  8. Wait for rescue

I have been telling my kids that to panic in ANY situation could spell disaster and the ability to keep your head when things seem their worst shows a strength of mind and character.

Having the gear is one thing but knowing how to use it is another. If you don't teach them how to signal effectively they're not going to be able to figure it out on their own in a rescue situation. None of it is terribly difficult, (my 3 year old can blow a whistle 3 times,) but it does take some time and some effort to get them to remember the steps.

Getting lost is easy. Staying lost while following the list above is hard.

Thanks for reading,



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