survival - Mountain House Blog
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Finding Water on the Trail

Staying hydrated is just about your first priority on any wilderness trek. You can go weeks without food, but mere days without water, and even a moderately dehydrated person may get sufficiently fogged-up in the cognition department to make poor, even dangerous choices. On day hikes and overnighters, you can often get by toting all the water you need from home. But that’s not feasible for backpackers on multi-night treks, who’ll need to find and treat natural water sources along their way. Really, though, everybody – including day hikers – should have some idea of how to find water on … Continue reading

Six of the Most Useful Outdoor & Survival Knots You Should Know

Knot-tying is one of those skills that never go out of fashion—especially for outdoorspeople, but really for anyone who wants to become more resourceful on the off-chance they find themselves in dire straits. If your experience in the art up till now has been restricted to tying shoelaces and the occasional in-a-pinch overhand knot, knots can seem a difficult, even esoteric challenge. But while there are many kinds of knots better- or worse-suited for all sorts of situations, you actually can get by fine for most everyday applications learning just a handful. The following are some of the basic, tried-and-true … Continue reading

Tips for Surviving in a Snow Storm

Winter weather can be lovely: There’s not much prettier than big, feathered snowflakes lazily falling in a frosted forest. But it can also be ferocious. Enter: the snow storm.  Whether you’re into winter sports and recreation or simply hunkering down for the season at the old domicile, preparation for winter weather is vital. Here we’ll run down some of the basics of winter storm survival: at home, in the car, and out-and-about in the backwoods or mountains. Winter Storm 101: Hazards & Terminology Whether you’re headed out into the wintry woods on snowshoes or skis, or you’re packing the car … Continue reading

What to Do If You’re Lost in the Backcountry

There aren’t many sinking feelings quite like the gradual realization that you’re lost in the wilderness. Actually, you don’t need big backcountry to get turned around—not by a long shot. People get lost within a few hundred yards of roads, visitor centers, campgrounds: It happens all the time. It’s not a pleasant sensation for most people, disorientation, and the all-too-common response is to start panicking. Needless to say, panic—natural as it is—isn’t a super-useful state when you don’t know where you are. Clear Headedness and calm will serve you much better, and to cultivate that kind of cool when you’re … Continue reading

Avalanche Safety

For winter outdoor recreationists in the mountains, there’s no more fearsomely violent natural hazard than the avalanche. Too many of those skiers, snowshoers, climbers, and snowmobilers underestimate the risk and/or lack basic knowledge of avalanche behavior and avalanche safety. Others at least recognize the threat avalanches pose but don’t always actually take the time to study the forecast, test the snowpack, or practice their rescue techniques. There’s no substitute for taking an avalanche-safety course, which we heartily recommend to anyone who regularly adventures out in the winter backcountry, but for starters check out this blogpost: serving up a walk-through of … Continue reading

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