Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Ultralight Backpacking First Aid Kit

My Backpacking Mentor or Guru, Larry Williams, encouraged me to build my own first aid kit when I asked him, "What should I carry?" He did give me some advice based on his personal experiences : a small mirror and tweezers. I built my own first aid kit based on my own experiences. I have yet to use the tweezers, but can see where they could come in handy. A mirror in case you get something in your eye, or forget what you look like. Blisters will happen on the trail if you aren't careful, so moleskin or duct tape is useful. Duct tape will last you the entire trip once applied to the skin, otherwise carry enough moleskin for each day's hike. I have burned myself more times than I have had blisters, but thankfully cool water was nearby to soothe the burn. With any large burn, dehydration is your first twenty four hours concern, then infection. This leads into a antibiotic cream, salve, or spray. Of course, Band-aids are a required item to carry too. I usually carry a variety, fingertip, regular, and at least one good sized one. The amount should be varied for the length of the trip. Keeping the cut clean and infection free is your prime concern. Fingernail clippers have also been quite useful. A piece of paper and a pencil nub to make notes is a good idea (think wishlist). Butterfly closures are the newest item that I carry. Always, always replace what you have used after the trip and check expiration dates of medicine ( aspirin or Tylenol ) before each trip.

Pack what you think you might need, then hope you don't have to use them. Assess what you used, and what would have been nice to have on hand. Each person's first aid kit will be different, but similar.

Due to emails and requests, I have updated this page.

The List:
  • Hard Case Container: I have used a Ziplock baggie in the past to shave a few ounces, but prefer the harder case to protect the contents. I have broken too many items to justify the weight difference.
  • Tweezers
  • Small Mirror: It can also double as an emergency signal device.
  • Moleskin
  • Duct Tape Strips :attach these to the outside of case in a few layers.
  • Neosporin Antibacterial  Cream
  • Knuckle Band-aid
  • Large Band-aid
  • Butterfly Closures
  • Pencil nub and paper for notes
  • Fingernail clippers
  • Tylenol ( 1 per day of trip ): fever reducer and pain reliever
  • Aspirin ( 1 per day of trip ): fever reducer and anti-inflammation drug
  • Benadryl if allergic to bees and wasps
  • Alcohol swabs: doubles as eye glass cleaner

1 comment:

  1. First Aid Kit should be kept ready every places such as homes,offices, schools, in traveling vehicles and they should have all the items that can be used for first aid. If you do not have any at your home or in your workplace it's advisable that you have one.

    First Aid Kits