If one good thing came out of the Covid pandemic, it’s probably an appreciation of what we have in our own country. No, or limited international, or even interstate travel meant we had to explore our own ‘backyard’ a bit more.
In fact, camping boomed, with some campsites experiencing massive increases in bookings while camping supplies suffered from over demand.1,2
Of course, with many of us confined to four walls during the various lockdowns, caravans and tents weren’t necessarily the escape we were looking for. We are looking for fresh air and the time in the great outdoors – off the grid and away from zoom calls.
So, what do we need to survive on our off-grid adventures?
1. Clean drinking water supply
Outdoor survival experts talk about a rule of threes:3
- We can survive 3 minutes without oxygen
- We can survive 3 hours without shelter
- We can survive 3 days without water
- We can survive 3 weeks without food (as long as you have water and shelter)
Finding shelter and oxygen is probably reasonably easy under normal circumstances. But a lot of factors come into play with water and dehydration. Things like level of activity, outdoor temperature, body size and overall health all impact our rate of dehydration.4
Clean drinking water is critically important because your body needs it to carry out many essential functions including temperature regulation, keeping cells alive and helping the brain make hormones.4
So, the number one item on your packing list for off grid adventures should be an effective water filtration system, such as one of the LifeStraw products.
The LifeStraw microfilters remove 99.999999% of bacteria (including E.coli, Salmonella), 99.999% of parasites (including Giardia and Cryptosporidium), 99.999% of microplastics, as well as dirt, sand and cloudiness. Those products in the range incorporating carbon filters will also remove chlorine, organic chemical matter, and odours for improved taste.5
The LifeStraw products are the perfect companion for hiking, camping, or surviving when you don’t have access to a tap, only rivers, streams, ponds or dams.
2. First Aid Kit
A comprehensive first aid kit is essential for off-grid adventures. It should include:
- Insect repellent
- Sunburn Cream – but make sure you have sunscreen
- Lip and Hand Moisturizing Cream
- Skin cream or gel to soothe various bites, rashes, etc
- Burn Cream
- Analgesics such as paracetamol or ibuprofen to deal with headaches or injuries
3. Battery bank or way to charge a mobile phone
Although the off-grid adventure is a way to get away from the phone, your mobile device will be essential to contact emergency services if necessary. And many of us rely on the GPS capabilities of our device (not to mention the camera).
Battery banks that can charge your phone when you’re away from a power point are very useful. Better still, find one that has solar charging capabilities.
A good camping knife is another essential to pack.
5. Appropriate clothing and footwear
Australia can sometimes be a country of extremes. Make sure you pack clothing that suits your adventure. Even hot areas can be very cool at night.
Make sure you’re aware of the terrain and choose appropriate footwear. It might also protect you from some of the ground dwelling wildlife like snakes.
6. Toiletries and medications
You still need to brush your teeth and smell nice, even in the bush. And if you take any medications, make sure you pack enough for the trip.
7. Camping equipment
Bit obvious but make a checklist. You don’t want to start pitching a tent and find bits missing.
There are many more things you could pack, but you are meant to be leaving the luxury behind for your adventure. We’ve tried to keep it simple and essential. Perhaps the best advice is that provided by the Canadian Wildlife Federation when they say: “Water is life.” 6
So, whatever you do, don’t forget the LifeStraw!