Emergency Shelter

Maintaining a core temperature of 98.6 degrees Farenheit is a top priority in an emergency situation.

If you are backpacking, you will likely be carrying a tent, tarp or bivy bag to serve as an emergency shelter.

If you are day-hiking, carry some sort of extra shelter from rain and wind, such as a plastic tube tent or a jumbo plastic trash bag. A poncho can be made into a very effective shelter. Even  a reflective emergency or Space blanket is better than nothing.

There are countless variations on how to pitch a tarp or poncho. Be sure to carry some light nylon cordage to use for pitching and tying your shelter to trees, etc. Nylon cord of 1/16, 3/32 or 1/8 inch (2mm, 2.5mm, 3mm) diameter in any length cna be used. Recommendations are at least 30 feet (10m) of cord.

The Bothy Bag has become extremely popular in Europe, but has not caught on in the US yet. It is an excellent emergency shelter, expecially for group hiking. Both hiker and leaders should at least be familir with it as an excellent option. Click on Bothy Bag to learn more.

Jim Yuen , Sept 2008

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