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4State Area Campgrounds

Outdoor Safety: Camping Tips

Whether you're roughing it in a tent or planning a family outing to a national forest, there are many ways to make sure your experience is fun and safe. Consider the following safety tips:

  • Pack a first aid kit that includes antiseptics for cuts and scrapes, tweezers, insect repellent, bug spray, a snake bite kit, pain relievers, and sunscreen.
  • Bring emergency supplies. In addition to a first aid kit, this includes: a map, compass, flashlight, knife, waterproof fire starter, personal shelter, whistle, warm clothing, high energy food, water, and insect protection.
  • Learn the ABC's of treating emergencies. Recognizing serious injuries will enable you to attend to a victim until medical help arrives.
  • Before you leave, find out the weather report.
  • Arrive early.
  • Check for potential hazards.
  • Avoid areas of natural hazards.
  • Inspect the site.
  • Build fires in a safe area.
  • Make sure your fires are always attended.
  • Pitch your tent in a safe spot.
  • Dispose of trash properly.
  • Be cautious when using a propane stove.
  • Watch out for bugs, especially hornets, bees, wasps, and yellow jackets.
  • Beware when encountering wildlife.
  • Beware of poisonous plants.
  • Practice good hygiene.
For a more detailed version of this list and of other Outdoor safety lists go to www.fs.fed.us/recreation/safety/safety.shtml

Safety Tips for Non-hunters visiting the National Forests

  • Wear bright clothing. Make yourself more visible. Choose colors that stand out, like red, orange or green, and avoid white, blacks, browns, earth-toned greens and animal-colored clothing. Orange vests and hats are advisable.
  • Don?t forget to protect fido. Get an orange vest for your dog if he/she accompanies you.
  • Make noise. Whistle, sing or carry on a conversation as you walk to alert hunters to your presence. Sound carries well across mountain basins, and hunters should be listening for any sounds of animal movement.
  • Be courteous. Once a hunter is aware of your presence, don?t make unnecessary noise to disturb wildlife. Avoid confrontations.
  • Make yourself known. If you do hear shooting, raise your voice and let hunters know that you are in the vicinity.
  • Know when hunting seasons are. Continue to hike, but learn about where and when hunting is taking place.
  • Know your own comfort level. If hunting makes you uneasy, choose a hike in a location where hunting is not allowed, such as a national park or a state park, or schedule your outings for Sundays.

Courtesy of The Forest Service

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