Fight or flight?
While it is unlikely that you’ll be faced with a dangerous wild animal on any of your excursions to the Great Outdoors, it’s best to be prepared.
Instead of panicking while hiking on the great trails of the U.S. you can do a number of things to help yourself.
While most of us have grown up with the friendly image of Baloo from The Jungle Book, actual bears in the wild are a little (read: a lot) different when angry.
To be fair, bears usually attack travelers when they unwittingly enter their lair or if they sense danger to their cubs. (The term Momma Bear wasn’t coined by accident!)
It’s recommended to keep a bear spray handy during your camping or hiking adventures. A bear spray is specifically made to hinder the bear’s eyesight when sprayed into the eyes.
To prevent surprise encounters, experts suggest limiting your hiking to the afternoon time. Chances of getting mauled by a raging bear increase when you travel alone. Travel in groups of 3 to minimize risk to yourself and others.
If you do come face to face with a wild bear at a distance, slowly back up. Resist the urge to run, (we know, we know) but it’s the best thing to do in this situation. If the bear charges, stand your ground and use your spray when it’s approximately 30 to 60 feet away. When it comes in contact with you, play dead. Really. Fighting back is not the best survival method during a bear attack.
Much like bears, mountain lions usually attack when people are travelling alone or when they appear vulnerable because of say, an injury. These wild cats can be repelled by bear spray, so don’t forget to stock up on it before leaving your home.
As per the Mountain Lion Foundation, the smartest way to get through an attack unscathed is to stand tall and appear larger than the cat. Open up your coat or puff yourself up by raising your arms.
It will likely move on if you maintain eye contact, flail your arms above your head and toss items in its direction.
Your adventures will become that much more difficult if you aren’t equipped with the right survival gear and tools. We at Kayakalee provide sturdy travel-friendly waterproof backpacks, outdoor water purifiers and more.