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FedEx Blog

10 Essentials for Surviving in the Great Outdoors

June 21, 2018

“Sometimes people think they are going on a short day hike and just don’t take the time to prepare.”

It’s a regular scenario for Jeff Salzer, a FedEx Trade Networks team member who also volunteers as a search and rescue volunteer in Pierce County, Washington. The rough terrain, which is not far from Mt. Rainier, can be confusing for hikers.

“What they don’t realize is that it’s easy to get turned around,” Salzer says.

According to Salzer, these ten things could mean the difference between life and death, and you should always have them while packing:

  • Basic first aid kit that includes bug repellent
  • Sun protection including sunglasses, a hat, and sunscreen. Wear sunscreen even on cloudy days, as clouds block as little as 20% of UV rays.
  • Extra clothing including a hat, gloves, jacket, and rain gear for protection against the weather
  • Headlamp or flashlight and extra batteries
  • Fire starter as you may need to start a fire to signal for help, or for warmth and comfort
  • Multi-tool kit with a pocket knife, pliers, saw, and screwdriver function
  • Water and filter straw
  • Extra food
  • Map, compass, and cell phone with charger
  • Compact mirror, whistle, or flashlight to help signal to your location

Watch more in the video above to see the Pierce County 4×4 Search and Rescue team in action, how Salzer brings this safety knowledge to the workplace, and the first thing you should always do when you realize you’re lost.



    Tom Germino says:

    This was fascinating. I never realized what people have to go through in order to be competent to be a rescuer. I just want to say thank you to Jeff because I live in Pierce County.

    Peter says:

    Great article, I would only suggest one more thing. A Mylar blanket for warmth they are very compact and cost near to nothing.

    Pat Brown says:

    Excellent advice for staying safe in the outdoors. Amazing volunteer effort!

    Sherri Cureton says:

    Very cool! Simple reminders to make the journey safer. Thank you!

    Chris Veitch says:

    including what you’ve mentioned, I always take a survival/bivvy bag to keep warm, just incase its needed. packs down smaller than a poncho and could be a life saver.

    Tim Mace says:

    Great story! It sounds a lot like what they teach the kids in Scouts. I would add to let someone know where you are going and when you expect to return. That way, someone knows when to ask for help if you can’t.

    Carla Andrews says:

    Tim, Jeff talks about that tip in the video and has some other valuable tips that are not listed in the written blog piece. It is great viewing and we couldn’t be prouder to have Jeff on the FedEx Trade Networks team.

    Sonia Volz says:

    Thank you for your volunteer work! And these are very valuable tips and reminders!

    Jason Wilkes says:

    Fantastic that U can give back to the community & help when they need it. The information given is always great when u travel outdoors.

    Anita Tibbetts says:

    Jeff! Great video! Thanks for all you do!! Glad to have you on our team!!

    Jeanne Funatake says:

    Great video Jeff. Glad to see you are uding your knowledge and fitness helping outdoor enthusiasts

    Brad Odenwalder says:

    Nice job Jeff. Reminds me of all the stuff I learned in scouts. I’m glad you took the time to teach others.

    Robin Glover says:

    Great job I learn a lot from your video keep up the good work.

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