MPI Outdoors


For Outdoor Adventures

Know your own strengths and limitations. Do not take on more of a trip than you are physically and emotionally trained to handle. Don't become a fool looking for trouble, be honest with yourself about your capabilities. Prepare yourself mentally and physically. The following is a suggested Plan, you must modify it for your specific needs and the terrain that you will be traversing. THINK SAFETY FIRST.

(A.) Make a check list of the items to carry in your pack:

Make two sets of check boxes, check the first box when you choose the item and then when you pack it, check off the second box. Go over each item carefully before you pack it to insure its reliability, quality and the quantity. Think through your trip with the checklist.

Pack things in logistical order of need. Practice packing and unpacking. Make sure your load is evenly distributed. Time spent before you go will make the trip more enjoyable and make you more aware of your pack and its contents.

(B.) Check all your equipment carefully, at least twice:

  1. Bring a good survival kit and first aid kit. Know what is in each kit, where it is packed and how to use all the items.
  2. Bring good rain gear and wind protection. Do not forget a hat. It is much easier to keep yourself dry and warm than it is to get dry and warm after a sudden change in the weather.
  3. Make sure your choice of footwear is broken in and appropriate. Walk a mile in your boots around town before you have to walk a mile or more in the wilderness. Choose good socks with moisture wicking capabilities to keep you feet dry and warm.
  4. Consider the weight and durability to all equipment. A pound in your pack translates to ten pounds of pressure on your back and on your feet. Don't under pack or over pack, take what you really feel that you will need. , THINK this through.

(C.) Take the time to research your destination/activity:

  1. Review guidebooks, maps, etc.. Know the area, as you may have to rely on this information for your survival.
  2. Discuss your plans with people knowledgeable in the area that you are venturing into. Know the area well, before it knows you.
  3. Write down your itinerary in as much detail as possible.
  4. Check probable weather conditions by calling ahead and by watching or reading national weather forecasts.

(D.) Practice packing, whether going for a day or a week:

  1. Move all your heavy items toward your center of gravity; for men, this is high and forward and for women, it tends to be lower towards the small of the back.
  2. Put your maps, trial guide, water, camera, rain gear, fuel bottle and personal safety items and SPACE BLANKET in the outside compartments of your pack where you can easily get to them and where the wet items will not leak.
  3. Place your change of clothes on the bottom of the pack, under your food supply, stove, cooking utensils. Usually you will only need these when you stop and can make the time to unpack.
  4. Lash your tent, sleeping bag and pads on the outside of the pack in a position where they are out of the way for your outside compartments and do not restrict your movement.

(E.) Do not overlook special items you may need:

  1. Winter Items: Extra dark sunglasses, snow shovel, high energy drink, extra pot for melting snow, overmitts, gaiters, etc.
  2. Hunting: Extra ammo, knife sharpener, SPACE BLANKET on which to clean your game, wet naps for personal clean up.
  3. THE 10 ESSENTIALS: Place in a poly zip bag or other suitable lightweight container in an outside compartment of your pack: (1) an extra supply of water (2) waterproof matches and tinder (3) topographic map of area (4) compass (5) basic first aid kit (6) whistle and/or signal mirror (7) 50 feet of nylon cord (8) pocket knife (9) SPACE BLANKET (10) a couple of high energy food bars.

(F.) Let a responsible person know your itinerary:

  1. Leave a full written itinerary with a friend that you can trust to follow up. Set time deadlines that you will be back or when you will call. It is better to be safe than dangerously sorry.
  2. Explain how you are traveling, who with and when you will return. Stick to your planned itinerary as much as possible.
  3. Leave information concerning your special medical needs.
  4. Check into and out of any wilderness area with the park rangers or other authorities.

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