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Camping is a fun-filled, adventurous way to bond with nature and whoever accompanies you. Before embarking on your camping journey, you’ll need to know some crucial safety practices for exploring the wilderness. Specifically, you’ll need to know how to stay safe in the dark if you plan to camp at night. This guide will cover everything you need to know about staying safe when camping at night, from planning ahead and packing the right gear to minding wildlife and practicing fire safety.
Ways to Stay Safe Camping at Night
If you’re planning an overnight camping trip, check out these nine ways to stay safe:
1. Plan Ahead
Camping safety starts with planning ahead. Make sure you review all the questions you need to ask when camping before packing your bags and heading into the wilderness. Reserve your shelter or campground site in advance, and make sure you pick the right site for you. To find the right site, consider the age, physical abilities and medical needs of everyone in your camping group and choose your amenities accordingly.
If you’re camping with any kids, you’ll need to do a bit of extra prepping and planning. Make sure each kid knows how to respond if they encounter a problem or what to do if they get separated from you.
2. Be Aware of Your Surroundings
During your trip, set up camp during daylight hours so you can see exactly where you’re pitching your tent and the surrounding area. Doing so can help you avoid pitching your tent near a cliff, anthill, snake nest or any other hazard. You’ll also want to check out where the nearest water, paths and amenities are located while it’s still light.
You should also be aware of the weather. Though the weather can change at any time, checking the forecast before your trip will help you know what to expect so you can come prepared. Always try to pack supplies for rain, snow and high heat just in case.
3. Bring a Survival Kit
Always be prepared for the worst-case scenario. In case of an emergency, you will need to have a survival kit filled with basic tools to keep you safe until help arrives. Make sure your survival kit includes water purifying tablets, a flashlight, extra batteries, a sharp knife, waterproof matches and first-aid supplies, such as bandages, antibiotic ointment, roller gauze and gauze pads.
4. Wear Appropriate Gear
Camping overnight requires the appropriate gear for nightfall. After the sun goes down, you’ll need something to help you see and a way to stay warm. The right lighted hat can help you see where you’re stepping at night and keep you warm. For example, the Panther Vision POWERCAP® LED lighted hats are available as beanies, which will guide your path while keeping you warm in cozy fleece.
Along with a lighted hat, you’ll want to pack plenty of heavy clothes and blankets to keep yourself warm around the campfire. Make sure your clothing completely covers you to protect against insects and bug bites at night. You will also need a heavy sleeping bag because overnight temperatures can be extremely chilly, even in warmer climates.
5. Practice Fire Safety Habits
One of the best parts about camping is sitting around the campfire. If you plan on enjoying a relaxing evening around the fire, make sure you take the proper fire safety measures. Set up your fire in a contained, designated area that’s far away from any tents, shoes, clothing or other fabrics. Never leave your fire unattended.
When you’re finished with your fire for the night, put it out completely before going to bed. Safely putting out a fire includes drowning all the embers, not just the red ones.
6. Be Aware of Local Wildlife
Do your research on the area where you’ll camp and the wildlife it’s home to. Make sure you store all food in your car, a bear-safe container or a food storage locker so the smell doesn’t attract unwanted wildlife to your site. Avoid feeding or touching the wildlife. If you come in contact with any wild animals, wash your hands with soap and water as soon as possible.
If you’re camping in an area known for its bears, pack some bear repellant, which is basically pepper spray specifically designed for use against bears. Spraying the repellant will make the bear run away, giving you time to get to safety. Usually, bears are only looking for food and won’t bother you, but it’s best to be armed with bear spray just in case.
7. Stay Hydrated
Staying hydrated is key when camping. You’ll need to drink at least two liters of water each day you’re camping, especially if you’re in a warm climate or plan on doing any difficult hiking. You need to drink water regularly throughout the day, not just when you feel thirsty, to ensure your body has enough fluids to function at its best. Once you begin to feel thirsty, odds are you’re already dehydrated.
8. Bring Any Medication Needed for Allergies
The last thing you want is for an allergic reaction to ruin your camping trip. Bring an EpiPen and any other medications you might need for known allergies so you’re prepared for unexpected circumstances. If you come into contact with any unfamiliar plants or receive any bug bites, pay attention to any swelling, labored breathing or dizziness.
9. Remain Alert
Pay attention to your body, listen to what it needs and notice how it reacts to the environment throughout your camping trip. Get plenty of sleep each night, and limit your alcohol intake to ensure you’re able to remain alert. Staying in tune with your body and keeping alert can prevent you from overlooking any potential health issues and assure you have your wits about you if you run into a problem.
Shop Lighted Caps and Flashlights From Panther Vision
To prepare for your overnight camping adventure, pick up safety gear from Panther Vision today. Our patented designs offer you unparalleled performance for a great value, so you can rely on our products when you need them most. Plus, we back each of our products with a limited lifetime warranty, so you can be confident you’re getting the best.
The Panther Vision team is comprised of avid outdoor enthusiasts ready to provide responsive customer service. Contact Panther Vision for more information on our lighted gear, or shop our inventory today.