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  1. #1
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    New question here. What can be done in an emergency when there is no cell phone???

    I like to ride trails on my own. But where I ride there is no cell phone coverage.
    What advice do people have in case of an emergency?
    How should I prepare for an emergency?
    What should I do if I have a major crash and can not ride or walk out of the forrest?
    I usually tell my wife where I am riding but I think it would be a long time before someone came to rescue me and then they still have to locate my exact location.
    Thanks for any advice.

  2. #2
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  3. #3
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    Really you just have to deal with the situation as/if it happens. You won't be able to plan for everything. Maybe get a SPOT if you're really worried.

    I've crashed, got knocked and awaken to being able to see my knee cap before. The best I could do was use my jersey as a bandage and ride out to my car then drive till I could get cell reception then call for a ride to the hospital. Ended up with some stiches and a concussion. All in all I'd rather just deal with it when it happens then worry about every time I ride.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by dochou View Post
    I like to ride trails on my own. But where I ride there is no cell phone coverage.
    What advice do people have in case of an emergency?
    How should I prepare for an emergency?
    What should I do if I have a major crash and can not ride or walk out of the forrest?
    I usually tell my wife where I am riding but I think it would be a long time before someone came to rescue me and then they still have to locate my exact location.
    Thanks for any advice.
    The traditional way of dealing with emergencies in wilderness is to:
    1. Die.
    2. Rely on Luck.
    3. Be prepared for anything.
    4. Travel in a group.

    Relative to cell phones, I have rarely had cell coverage in wilderness areas. I do take one when traveling solo. I hope that I or someone I meet on the trail can hike to a tall ridge to seek cell signal. If you are seriously concerned about safety, do not travel solo.

  5. #5
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    i don't ride alone in large places for long periods of time. i usually just do the smaller loop trails by my house when i'm just going for a ride by myself. we have cell coverage here though.

  6. #6
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    I strongly recommend a book call "98.6 degrees: The art of keeping your ass alive" by Cody Lundin. It was recommend on here and after reading about halfway through so far I can see why.

    I try to pack for the worst every time, from Greenways to wilderness...you get used to the minor extra weight, plus if something goes down you know what you have and are prepared. I usually add a few extra things for the longer more desolate locations though.

    Sent from my DROID RAZR using Tapatalk 2

  7. #7
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    Be prepared
    Inform an adult of where you're riding, route, and what time to expect you back
    DO NOT DEVIATE FROM PLANNED ROUTE!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ( it's that 1/2 mile of extra credit that will kill you!)
    Let the person you told know you got back to your vehicle (that is if that's how you got to your riding location).

  8. #8
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    I think you can get an app (gps related) via Google that someone else can track where you are via their phone or on a computer.

    I've heard SPOT isn't too bad.

    As I ride occasionally on a trail that has no coverage, here's what I do: (remember I worry way too much and being a girl makes you a little more cautious)

    Always let someone know when you leave and call when you get back so that person knows you aren't dead.

    As for preparing, make sure you have plenty of water and food of sorts in case you get stuck somewhere or have to walk for a long distance or for the heat. Have stuff for flats and other bike related things that could go wrong like a multi-tool and some band-aids.

    Wear loud clothing so if you do end up crashing you'll be easily seen. Get a whistle as well.

    I also keep my asthma inhaler with me and a windproof/waterproof jacket. After my accident last spring I now keep a change of clothing in the car.

    Do what works for you. The more you stuff in your pack, the heavier it gets so keep it basic.

  9. #9
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    A basic first aid kit is a good idea. You want to stop bleeding, immobilize a break, etc. Improvisation can make all the difference if you ever need first aid.

    Technology can and will fail. Get a compass and learn on how to use it. Practice with it so you have confidence that it works.

    I look up the major roads that surround the riding area. You can take a straight line out if you have to. It helps to have a compass and an understanding of the area. I have done this more than a few times, usually because I was pushed for time.

    Theres a lot more to being totally comfortable.

    You could get a signal mirror , whistle, etc

  10. #10
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    Aside from all the first aid stuff, do take your cell phone with you because the signal it sends out can be used to locate you especially if it has GPS.

    Also, always have a whistle with you whenever you are out in the wilds. If you are injured to the point where you cannot move, you can blow the whistle repeatedly to attract attention.

    Last, and most important, ALWAYS make sure that someone knows EXACTLY where you are going and HOW LONG you expect to be there.

    Be careful.

  11. #11
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    Whatever happened to self reliance?

    Or common sense?

    Have these things all been replaced by electro-nannies?

    Most of the places I ride don't have cell phone coverage. This is good because then you don't have to stop while people make or take a quick call.

    Total buzz kill.

    As others have said, make sure someone else knows where you went and when you should come back.

    Mix in a little first aid knowledge and a small kit and a dash of self restraint when alone or in a remote area and live a little.

    If all of these things should fail there's always crawling out on bloody stumps.

    If the bloody stumps fail, there is always dying, alone and cold in the dark.

    One of the best things about this sport is the remote and faraway places you get to go,
    being tethered to the "virtual" world does not enhance that experience.

    Your results will of course, vary.

    jummo

  12. #12
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    My SPOT goes everywhere with me if I know I will be out of cell coverage. I also keep it in the plane when I'm flying in AK. Works good up that far north, even on the North Slope. I usually modify the messages based on the activity (flying, hiking, biking, hunting, etc.).

    Spot

    Flying has been a little slow lately, so not much activity.
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  13. #13
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    Depends on the emergency I would assume.

  14. #14
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    NEVER EVER rely completely on electronics.
    If you aren't prepared for an emergency, chances are you'll be in trouble when everything goes wrong. And even if you have all the necessary items, if you don't know how to use them (like a compass, for instance), you'll be in even bigger trouble.
    In a survival situation, the first thing you want to do is to calm down (DO NOT PANIC), and assess the scenario - what materials do you have? How far do you think you are from rescue/human contact? Etc.
    You must now improvise with what you have and can find.
    You need clean water, warmth (fire), shelter, and food. These are your priorities.
    Consider creating a survival kit.
    And always remember that your brain is your most critical survival tool. The will to survive is your best friend. Fear is your worst enemy.
    If I were you, I would take a few survival and orienteering classes (preferably not online, because you need field experience). It would also be wise to take a first-aid course.
    It helps a great deal to ride in a group or at least with another person.
    Improvise, adapt, and overcome.
    "Be prepared, not scared"
    ~Cody Lundin

    "What is stronger, fear or hope?"
    ~Lance Armstrong

  15. #15
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    You should have been a boy scout!

  16. #16
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    draft a text of rides and send it out before, ,,whistle, cd, don't be an idiot, all that other stuff

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by jummo View Post
    Whatever happened to self reliance?

    Or common sense?

    Have these things all been replaced by electro-nannies?

    Most of the places I ride don't have cell phone coverage. This is good because then you don't have to stop while people make or take a quick call.

    Total buzz kill.

    As others have said, make sure someone else knows where you went and when you should come back.

    Mix in a little first aid knowledge and a small kit and a dash of self restraint when alone or in a remote area and live a little.

    If all of these things should fail there's always crawling out on bloody stumps.

    If the bloody stumps fail, there is always dying, alone and cold in the dark.

    One of the best things about this sport is the remote and faraway places you get to go,
    being tethered to the "virtual" world does not enhance that experience.

    Your results will of course, vary.

    jummo
    Thank you
    Gone are the days we stopped to decide,
    Where we should go,
    We just ride...

  18. #18
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    Bring a whistle. It's not heavy and doesn't need batteries.

  19. #19
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    I re-read the OP and have to admit I was a bit snarky in my reply.

    Actual advice is similar to what others have already said. Find the "10 essentials". Get them. This includes a whistle, basic compass, map, basic first aid, red flag, etc.. Most trails will have some people from time to time. With the basics, you can usually get some help in an emergency. Planning and thinking go a long way.

    Nature tends to favor the well-prepared. (Persian proverb, it is said.)

  20. #20
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    SMOKE SIGNAL, like the Aboriginal or American indian style, this is a great method of attracting attention in a national park, just make sure you dont start a bush fire that your in the middle of thus causing you to get burnt alive.........
    Dont ever let the truth get in the way of a funny story....

  21. #21
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    If you need life saving service

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  22. #22
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    A rescue whistle might be something to consider bringing along.

  23. #23
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    flare gun, you can even use it to fend of the pesky wolves.

  24. #24
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    Everyone is right on with the whistle, REI has some great lightweight kits that are nice but a good emergency blanket is super light and can help you get through the night and be used for a signal device in the day. Check this ten ounce kit out.

    Adventure Medical Kits UltraLight / Watertight .5 First-Aid Kit at REI.com

  25. #25
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    Never count on somebody else to bail you out.
    Your fear of looking stupid is holding you back.

  26. #26
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    Get some skills, and become more self sufficent. 20 years ago we all got along fine without cell phones...

  27. #27
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    I belve there is an international emergency number that links all mobile (cell) phones via satellite. It works where there is no cellular coverage. Trouble is I don't know the number.

  28. #28
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    In case of emergency with no cell coverage you should scream like a b*tch and pray another human hears you and not a predator. Maybe sasquatch will have a first aid kit.

    OR

    You can carry around one of those Life Alert devices lol
    Last edited by GiantMountainTroll; 09-02-2012 at 08:14 PM.
    2013 Specialized P 26 AM green/purple. Nuff said

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  29. #29
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    I also ride solo 99 % of the time , some great advice here
    the Spot seems like a very good idea,
    I slow it down a few notches when riding in more
    remote areas, ya going fast on downhills and testing
    your skill is fun but save that for when riding with
    someone else or group rides.

  30. #30
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    Oh goody! A topic I really know something about!

    Here's the essentials...
    You need to maintain: a workable body temp, body hydration, structural integrity, and avoid excessive blood-letting, long enough to see you through until someone finds you or you extricate yourself out of the mess you're in.

    Body Temp: try to hang around the 98.6F/37C. Since you're riding trails near your home, you should be able to predict the weather fairly well... bring layers adequate enough for the worst conditions you may see whether you are there for an hour or all night long.

    I carry a spaceblanket along with handwarmer packets and my clothing.
    You can consider a firestarting kit for this as well, but be sure to know how to use your fire kit with limited tinder, limited limb function, shaking hands (from cold or shock).

    Keep your head, hands, and feet covered too.

    Body Hydration: You're probably doing this already, as most of us are. A means of treating water can be a plus if you are out in the bush/outback.

    Maintaining your body temp also works here as well. Too hot and you'll continue to sweat. Too cold and you'll shake/shiver, which burns energy, which comes from metabolizing fluids/solids.....

    Hydration is important to help keep your brain functioning well too... btw. Stay hydrated, but overhydration is not necessary.

    Be careful about ingesting anything that may cause you to puke or have diarrhea. You lose significant fluid this way too.

    Excessive Blood-Letting: Stop the bleeding, cleanse the wound, bandage the wound, support the wound.

    DO NOT... suture, staple, or even superglue wounds closed, unless you have been specifically trained to do so. That means with an actual lab component to your training, not just watching youtube or some SpecOps/UberMilitary/Ninja training DVD.
    The risk of infection runs high if you do. Infection can spread fast, and can kill or at least do some serious damage to your body and what's inside.


    Stop the bleeding by covering the wound with the cleanest material you have on hand. I like to carry a few 4x4 gauzes in my CB. You only need to make the first layer the cleanest, you can stick your dirty old socks on after that if that's all you have for absorbent bulk.
    It's nice if you can immobilize the wound site and the joints above and below. Not always possible or practical though.
    Elevate the wound above the level of your heart, again, if possible. Things like pressure points and tourniquets are best left to be learned in a class where you can actually practice them.

    Stopping the bleeding comes in two stages...
    1 - Initial intervention. You don't want to bleed out and die right then, so you stop the bleeding anyway you can.
    2 - You had to remove your initial dressing (the part of the "band-aid" that covers the wound) so you could gawk at your awesome skeletal structure, or to clean it out of the sticks, rocks, and other assorted goodies you picked up as you connected with whatever opened you up.

    Rinse with the cleanest available water you have. Unless you backwash like a bad septic system at summer camp (or you share your water with someone else's mouth and they backwash like that)... your CB or waterbottle water will probably be just fine. Oh... wait... I forgot... if you don't clean your CB often, but instead you pull the blue bag after a ride, hang it in the window so you can watch the cool little 'thingys' swimming around in it... you might reconsider using that water!

    Make every attempt to flush out all foreign objects. Pick these out if possible without rooting around with your dirty fingers/nails... Lord only knows where you've been sticking those fingers before your crash!
    A sandwich-size ziplock baggie, filled with water, jetted out through a tiny hole in one corner acts as a nice wound flushing tool. If you had your PB&J in there, be sure to turn the bag inside out first... wouldn't want crumbs in your wound, plus... you get to lick the jam and pb off the outside of the bag that way

    Butterfly "sutures" are the best wound closure for most folks. If you don't know what these are... google it?
    You can make them out of any tape. Take a strip, measure it into thirds by length. Then imagine thirds, side-to-side. In the middle third section, tear/cut from each side one third the way in. Make four of these cuts... two on each side.
    You should have two flaps in the middle of your tape now.
    Fold those in towards the middle, sticky side and you now have a skinny middle section that will not stick to the wound edges.
    Tape one end to one side of your wound, pull the tape across the wound until the edges are just closed, then press down the other end on the opposite side. Repeat as necessary until you have these little butterflies up and down your wound, holding it closed.

    These are not to stop the bleeding! Just holding the wound closed, approximating the edges.

    Cover your newly cleaned and taped wound with the cleanest available material. If bleeding persists.. add absorbent bulk if you have any. Not just your clothing... things like moss work too... depending on what kind it is and how long it is. Be creative... Martha and Rachael will just adore you!


    Structural Integrity Keeping bony parts aligned or if crooked beyond belief... in the position they are in if they do not compromise circulation. Splinting is something to be learned hands on in a class, although some folks may actually get the right idea from a book or vid. Practice it though! Spouses, girl/boy friends, siblings, kids, are great to practice on, just don't be all masochistic on them Dogs will actually put up with a fair amount of human hijinks... but do NOT attempt this on a cat! At least not on any cat I've ever known... or you'll be back to the bleeding thing...

    I carry a SAM splint in my CB for long rides that take me out into the boonies. I also carry one aluminum finger splint.

    If you are a diabetic... you KNOW what you should carry and do... so don't be messing up!
    If you are seriously allergic to insect stings, food products... you should also KNOW what you should be carrying and what to do in the event you are heading towards anaphylactic shock.
    Same thing with other body ailments.
    If you ride with someone else... be kind enough to let them in on your "little secret" and how to respond if you are going downhill fast. You should probably also work out any sort of concerning your gear and who it belongs to should you die... especially in big groups... keeps the fighting down and might prevent another medical emergency... just saying...

  31. #31
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    Part Doo... err... Deuz... awwww, more stuff!

    SIGNALING: Signals work principally by sound and sight.

    Sound...
    Yelling.. until your vocal chords shred into tiny frayed strands and you sound like Michael Jackson (with all due respect to the man... he didn't have that strong of a speaking voice)

    Whistle... now here's a good one! Acme, FOX40, and others are putting out multi-tone whistles specifically designed for emergency signaling. Get you one!

    Sight...
    Mirrors, lights, flares, bright-colored cloth.

    Considerations... light source for reflective materials, visibility - fog, smoke, vegetation, etc.

    There are some good, small, signal mirrors out there on the market, but you really should practice with them first. I take my students out and have them use a variety of reflective objects to signal a partner across a field on a sunny day. It's a real eye-opener to actually use one instead of just relying on what is put into survival manuals.

    Flares are good, just be careful of starting fires (which can be great for getting help... ala firecrews... but if you burn up it's a waste, also if you survive... the bill you receive might kill you!).

    Lights work well only if they are really bright and last long enough, and it's dark... duh!

    Any signal needs to tell your intended target that there is a person who needs assistance. The international signal is 3... flashes of a mirror, blasts on a whistle.
    Audible signals need to be made so the three sounds are distinguishable from each other.

    My GF just got here so I gotta go... but I'll close with this...

    The first thing you should do is create a plan for what you are going to do, illustrate that plan in a way so others may use it to find you, do not deviate from that plan unless you note that you might, then end the plan when the ride is over... calling someone, whatever.

    The person back at home you are hoping will miss you and call for a search party needs to understand these things...
    • When you are going, for how long, and when you should be considered "overdue"
    • Where you are going, any deviations you might take
    • What clothing you are wearing, what bike you are riding (colors, and other significant characteristics someone could identify you by)
    • What kind of emergency equipment you are taking, and any pertinent experience/training you have to handle emergencies


    Know how to navigate your way back home by the trail or off-trail, or just know how to get to the busiest path/road you can so you might come across additional help.

    BTW... not to toot my horn, but to let you know where I'm coming from... in addition to other things I've done in my life... I have been teaching wilderness survival since the 90's.

    There's more I could add, and undoubtedly there's more other's can add that will be of great value... I'm looking forward to seeing what people post!

  32. #32
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    Well from first hand experience I got busted up pretty good last weekend (collar bone, bunch of ribs) and to be honest I don't know if I could have gotten myself back on my feet had I been alone let alone done any first aid. I have done countless hours in Colorado back country alone this time I was rather close to road had to hike out one mile to were we could get a vehicle.

  33. #33
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    Start a fire... #1 it'll keep you warm, #2 it''ll discourage animals from coming near, #3 someone might see the smoke and phone it in to the authorities who'll come investigate to at the very least, think they'll get to ticket someone for starting a camp fire on crown/federal land without a permit or something.
    I don't post to generate business for myself or make like I'm better than sliced bread

  34. #34
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    lol.. i'm picturing a dude wrapped around a tree, pinned between his bike and some bushes on the side.... calling out in the most pathetic of tone, "help i've fallen and i can't get up!"

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeeEight View Post
    Start a fire... #1 it'll keep you warm, #2 it''ll discourage animals from coming near, #3 someone might see the smoke and phone it in to the authorities who'll come investigate to at the very least, think they'll get to ticket someone for starting a camp fire on crown/federal land without a permit or something.
    You're assuming that the person either has matches or the necessary survival skills in order to create a fire without them.
    Most people don't know how to make a fire without matches.
    You are also assuming that the person is able to gather enough tinder, kindling, and fuel in order to create and sustain a fire.
    I'm certainly not saying that building a fire is a bad idea, but most people probably wouldn't be able to, and the situation would be worse if they were injured.
    Last edited by SpecializedWindsor; 09-03-2012 at 12:26 PM. Reason: typo
    "Be prepared, not scared"
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    "What is stronger, fear or hope?"
    ~Lance Armstrong

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by -Todd- View Post
    Get some skills, and become more self sufficent. 20 years ago we all got along fine without cell phones...
    this.

    im surprised it took 2 pages to get the smart response.
    If you arent bleeding, you arent riding hard enough.
    http://about.me/bigterry

    Quote Originally Posted by Hutch3637 View Post
    I don't need sex. My life fvcks me daily.

  37. #37
    Life is Short...Ride Hard
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    Get a Road ID and hope that someone comes by and sees you.

    Other than that, find a friend to ride with. I only ride solo on trails that are used often. Cause even with a road ID, someone needs to be there to call for help or hike/bike for help.

    Life is short... Ride Hard!

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by AZ.MTNS View Post
    This, I own one.

    Story goes my wife had to get air-evacuated via helicopter for a bad crash when she was out mountain biking alone. Luckily a hiker had came across her and was able to run to a spot for cell phone signal and dialed in the emergency crew.

    From then on we both carry the Spot if we are riding alone.
    "Any wheel size is better than sitting at a computer all day." -Myself

  39. #39
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    From experience:

    Not only carry a map, but know where you are.

    We were 19 miles in to a 24 mile ride and one guy was feeling just awful. Flu or something. It was either 5 hard singletrack miles, or 1.5 road miles - as far as we could recall. ...if you turn the right way at the road crossing and if you turn the right way up the road.
    The turn in the road was not on the trail map.

    Us --->

    Fortunately, the situation was not dire, and we actually guessed correctly. But we concluded that in a real time-critical emergency we were ill-prepared to either find our way out or to guide someone in to help us.

    Since then we have made it a point to discuss our options and make sure we actually know where things are before we go, and esp. when going solo. This way we can bail or call for help at almost any point on a ride.
    Notes on your map will help, even if it's a hand-drawn map.

    -F
    It's never easier - you just go faster.

  40. #40
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    When I was in college, I liked to spend time in the remote back country...often by myself, but with friends too.

    I decided to do something that might seem over kill to some: I spent $500 and got a basic-EMT license. Never really used to in a professional sense, and when it came time to renew, I let it lapse...but the training has payed off like crazy.

    It's $500 bucks, and a couple nights of your week for about 6 months. It teaches you way more than you'll learn in any first aid class, but more importantly...it turns situations that'll freak some people out into muscle memory. You learn not to panic in certain situations, but instead react.

    I've actually used the skills I learned a few times (though, mostly after coming up on car wrecks...not in the wilderness). Plus, if your into it...you can always put those skills to work for a local volunteer EMS/FD.

    Seriously, one of the best investments I've ever made.

  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Le Pirate View Post
    When I was in college, I liked to spend time in the remote back country...often by myself, but with friends too.

    I decided to do something that might seem over kill to some: I spent $500 and got a basic-EMT license. Never really used to in a professional sense, and when it came time to renew, I let it lapse...but the training has payed off like crazy.

    It's $500 bucks, and a couple nights of your week for about 6 months. It teaches you way more than you'll learn in any first aid class, but more importantly...it turns situations that'll freak some people out into muscle memory. You learn not to panic in certain situations, but instead react.

    I've actually used the skills I learned a few times (though, mostly after coming up on car wrecks...not in the wilderness). Plus, if your into it...you can always put those skills to work for a local volunteer EMS/FD.

    Seriously, one of the best investments I've ever made.

    That is one of the reasons I had joined ski patrol. I got really good first responder training and taught how to improvise when you don't always have the right equipment.

    It also gave me some thing to do in winter.

  42. #42
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    A lot of times if there is no cell signal, you can still get a text out.

  43. #43
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    Sure the Spot is a fun gadget to send messages and let people track your location, but when s*** really hits the fans, you're going to want a personal locator beacon.

    PLBs are way more powerful and reliable, plus they don't require a subscription. Here's the smallest and lightest one on the market at REI.

  44. #44
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    I always carry a lcp and 3 shots 5 seconds apart out of a firearm is an international signal of distress. Even if someone doesn't understand the shots meaning they will remember it happening and will most likely help with a search.

  45. #45
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    [QUOTE=dochou;9647519]7

    I usually tell my wife where I am riding but I think it would be a long time before someone came to rescue me and then they still have to locate my exact location.
    Thanks for any advice.

    I never tell my wife where mi a going. I find that my
    Gir
    lfriend is much more responsive.

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by michael1 View Post
    PLBs are way more powerful and reliable, plus they don't require a subscription.
    +1. PLB is always in my camelbak

  47. #47
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    Geez

    I don;t carry a cell.....cause mostly it is out of range or dead trying to get an analog signal...

    So I tell people where I am going, and of course becareful, pay attention and smarten up.

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by SpecializedWindsor View Post
    You're assuming that the person either has matches or the necessary survival skills in order to create a fire without them.
    Most people don't know how to make a fire without matches.
    You are also assuming that the person is able to gather enough tinder, kindling, and fuel in order to create and sustain a fire.
    I'm certainly not saying that building a fire is a bad idea, but most people probably wouldn't be able to, and the situation would be worse if they were injured.
    Then carry a ****ing ELT transmitter and shove it up your anus where you can just squeeze to activate it. God... did you even read the OP''s first message ?
    I don't post to generate business for myself or make like I'm better than sliced bread

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave94024 View Post
    +1. PLB is always in my camelbak
    Where does the signal go when you set it off?

  50. #50
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    You can always signal over flying jumbo jets by burning your tires

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