(ModernSurvival.org) – Whether during a camping trip or a survival scenario, a turn of the weather can create a potentially deadly situation. While rain does nourish the earth and provide precious water for plants, animals, and people, it can also be incredibly destructive — often more so than most people realize.
How Rain Can Be Dangerous
Ask anyone who has been camping when an unexpected storm hits, and it quickly becomes apparent that rain is no joke. Rain can extinguish campfires, destroy gear, soak campers, and even wash away tents. Consider all of those dangers when applied to a survival situation. Without fire or shelter, being soaked to the bone is a surefire way to suffer hypothermia and face a life-or-death situation.
How to Prepare for Rain
While some of these tips may seem obvious, they’re often overlooked by campers and survivalists alike. Here are some ways anyone can prepare to outlast a downpour from Mother Nature:
- Choose the right tent. Whether camping or bugging out, having a high-quality tent is crucial. Select one with built-in ventilation, as this will prevent condensation from developing inside the shelter.
- Waterproof everything. Plastic may be bad for the environment, but it will keep equipment and food safe from unwanted moisture. Rusty tools and ruined food will spell doom for anyone who is forced to face a long-term survival situation. Plastic sacks, garbage bags, and even Ziplock containers can become a survivalist’s best friend when the sky opens up.
- Pack rain gear. Keeping rain off of the body is every bit as important as keeping it off gear — arguably, more so. This is why everyone should pack a waterproof jacket, pants, and boots. Simple rain ponchos can work in a pinch, as can a large garbage bag (with some modifications).
- Protect firewood. Fire is essential to survival in the wild. It provides warmth, cooks food, and can boil water to make it safe for consumption. Protecting stockpiles of firewood from getting soaked is important. Cover firewood with a tarp, and stack it on high ground that isn’t likely to be affected by flooding. As a precaution, pack extra firestarters just in case.
- Put rainwater to use. In any survival situation, access to potable water is going to be a person’s lifeline. Setting up rain traps to gather falling water is one way to quickly amass this valuable resource. Putting out empty containers, such as bottles and buckets, is one way to gather rainwater. Another method is to use a tarp, either to collect water or to divert it into a separate container.
Hypothermia isn’t the only threat posed by an unexpected rainstorm in the wild. Wet rocks and dirt become slippery, which increases the risk of falls. A sprained ankle or broken leg will diminish the odds of survival for just about anyone. To see another threat posed by an unexpected torrent, check out our article on places to avoid when setting up camp.
~Here’s to Your Survival!
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