Think about Gear
You don’t need the latest high tech, high performance, painfully expensive jacket to be adventure smart. The trick is putting a little bit of thought into what conditions you might meet and packing a bag with just enough to ensure you can cope with whatever the day may bring.
The right gear’s a good idea – here are our tips to getting it right!
Know where you are going
Carry a map/chart and compass and know how to use them.
Nowadays paper maps may seem unnecessary but they are light to carry and their batteries don’t run out of charge! For simple guides to map reading and using a compass check out the Beginners Guide on getoutside.ordnancesurvey.co.uk .
Make sure your mobile is charged…
but don’t rely on it for navigation and communication!
Mobile phones fail if they get soaking and signal coverage is notoriously poor in some areas. Have a waterproof case, charged portable charger or proper waterproof GPS and pack a map and compass as a backup.
Keep your energy levels up
Carry food and drink.
Eat well before you start out and snack throughout the day.
If you are heading out on your bike…
a fall might break your day, a good helmet and protective clothing might make your day.
Know and look after your kit…
carry spares and be able to fit them.
Remembering spare batteries for your torch or a spare inner tube for your bike can make the difference between you coming home safely or needing to call for help.
Stay warm and dry
Wear walking boots, carry insulating layers and waterproofs.
Your jacket doesn’t need to be expensive but does need to be waterproof. On the subject of footwear there is nothing like a blister to ruin a good day’s walking, so make sure your walking boots fit well! If you are out on the water then proper boating footwear will enable you to move around without slipping.
Carry a torch and a whistle…
it’ll save the day if you get caught out by the dark.
Beside being able to see your way if you end up out after dark, you can also use your torch to attract help:
six short flashes in short succession, repeated at 1 minute intervals is the international distress signal (you can also blow your whistle in a similar manner).
Respect the water
If you are heading out to sea or on the river; wear a well-fitted, well-maintained and suitable personal flotation device (lifejacket or buoyancy aid).
When open water swimming, a wetsuit will help you stay warm and make you float more. A bright hat (fluoro green or fluoro orange are the best) and a tow float will make sure you can be seen by other water users.
You don’t need the latest high tech, high performance, painfully expensive jacket to be AdventureSmart. The trick is putting a little bit of thought into what conditions you might meet and packing a bag with just enough to ensure you can cope with whatever the day may bring.
We are renowned for being a bit obsessed with the weather in the UK, which makes it surprising that people frequently don’t pay enough attention to how it might affect their days adventure.
Whatever your activity being prepared for the weather can make a big difference as to how you feel at the end of the day.
Whatever your planned activity for the day, be honest with yourself about you and your companions’ knowledge, fitness and ability. We all like to kid ourselves that we are fitter, or indeed more capable than we are but in this instance it pays to be honest.
Accidents can happen to anyone however adventure smart you are, so whatever your activity make sure you carry an appropriate means of calling for help should you need to.