Wilderness Survival: Bring A Backcountry Buddy

There has always been strength in numbers. As humans, we seem to know this instinctively. Yet when we crave the outdoors, we often slip off by ourselves for some quiet solitude. Unfortunately, that’s also when the trouble can start. It’s always best to bring a friend on your outdoor adventures, and if this doesn’t sound right, here are five of the many reasons that you shouldn’t go out there alone.

Defense
Predatory animals will always favor the lone hiker or camper. It’s just an easier target and they know it. But even a second person gives these animals pause for thought. They may stalk you and follow you, but you have strength in numbers – and that’s a potential lifesaver.

Medical Care
When one person is injured and alone, their odds of survival don’t look good. But just one additional person (even an untrained person) can bandage wounds, provide comfort and care, and if necessary – go for help.

A Second Opinion
Sometimes, we all need a reality check. And in a survival situation, this could be a life or death choice. If you’re wondering which course of action to take, see what your buddy says before diving in with both feet. It never hurts to get a second opinion.

Division of Labor
It can take a lot of work to survive. Building shelters, dragging in firewood and hauling water are all hard work. Yet they don’t seem so bad when you don’t have to do it all yourself. A division of the workload is only possible when you bring someone along on your trip.

Comradery
Unless you’re a bitter hermit or loner, it’s more fun to be in the great outdoors with others. Bonds are strengthened and memories are made when you have your buddies with you.

These tips, and many more survival tips, are in MacWelch’s books: Prepare For Anything – the Hunting & Gathering Survival Manual – How To Survive Anything – the Ultimate Winter Survival Handbook – and How To Survive Off The Grid

Follow him on Twitter @timmacwelch

And check out more of MacWelch’s outdoor skills and survival articles in Outdoor Life Magazine.

Shop Sportsman’s Guide for a huge selection of survival gear >

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