Your Hiking Tool Kit
Red Rock Search and Rescue loves to play hide and seek, but in case you want to go out hiking for the day and comeback on your own, here are some tools that could help. Be sure to check out The Red Rock Search and Rescue Library for printable information that you can take with you!
36 hour weather forecast for Las Vegas and other cities
Live camera from Mt. Charleston.
Have a plan
Inform someone of where you’re going and when you plan to return
Keep a flashlight and whistle with you
Eat well, stay hydrated: carry plenty of water
Stay on the trail
Ask for HELP!
Familiarize yourself with the area, use a map
Expect changes in the weather
10 Things to Bring
Bring a map of the area you’re hiking and learn how to find your location with a compass and based on the landmarks and trails. GPS tools and Cell Phones are not part of the 10 essentials. They are very helpful, but without batteries, they are just extra weight.
The basics being a hat, lip balm, and sunscreen to prevent sun burn. Sunglasses can also be helpful, both in summer and winter. You should also consider wearing special sun-proof clothing or a light long sleeved shirt.
This will vary greatly due to your environment, weather, elevation and amount of time you will be gone. Remember to plan for night, even if your only hiking in the daytime. Cooler temperatures can come rapidly and multiply with moisture. Layers are the key to keeping a desired temperature.
Bring a headlamp or flashlight with extra batteries. Unexpected delays are common and dusk can approach quickly.
A small first aid kit for personal use and your team is a must have. They are very easy to find pre assembled or to build a customized kit for specific needs such as asthma, diabetes, and sever allergic reactions.
There are many solutions to fire making, but you must get comfortable with these methods if you intend to rely on them. Moisture and wind-proof lighters are very easy to use and flint fire starters are easy to learn. Don’t let yourself be fooled that you can always “just rub two sticks together.”
Multi-tool/ Repair Kit
A Swiss Army style knife or Leatherman type multi-tool can cover many needs. A few safety pins, duct tape and a sewing kit can restore your gear if damaged. If you rip a hole in the bottom of your backpack, you are in for a long day of struggle.
Hiking burns a lot of calories and can leave you feeling weak and unprepared for the way back home. Bring small high energy foods that can help keep you going strong. There is a wide selection of energy bars and snacks made specifically for packing small.
How much water should you bring? The textbook answer is 1/3 in, 1/3 out, and 1/3 to share or spill. There are too many variables to have an actual amount you need to bring, so you will have to plan accordingly to your trip. This rule might make it easier. If you are hiking to the top of a mountain, think of how much water that would require. Then plan the same amount for the way back, and that amount agin for sharing or accidental spills.
Emergency blankets are small and easy to carry. This will help for a limited amount of time, but ideally you should have a tarp or tent to fight the elements. It may seem like overkill, but when the time comes that you need it, you will never doubt it again.