There are few things as exciting as the anticipation of a camping holiday with friends. I have a friend who was over the top about organizing. So much so, she phoned me 6 months in advance one year to organize the food for our week away together. While we have a great friendship, she turned into an organizational freak if we ever planned something together. She needs her ducks in a row; I allow mine some freedom of placement. I live in the moment until I really have to think about it. Then I rush around for hours getting everything ready realizing there are things I won’t have time for, and when we’re in the car on the way, I have this nagging feeling that I’ve forgotten something. This has not happened to my organized friend.
There are myriads of things you need to think about when planning a camping trip, let alone a group trip. You literally have to bring everything you need for that period of time and you’re usually in the boondocks, making it a hassle if you forget something. I usually forget something as silly as dishwashing soap! What have you forgotten that you’ve needed?
First aid is a definite must have for any hiking or camping holiday. Group needs are vastly different to individual needs. With many different personalities, you’re bound to have someone with two left feet or the adventurous one that decides to boulder hop and has a misstep, or another that burns their fingers while toasting a marshmallow on an open fire.
My husband gives me much entertainment because of how many times he trips UP steps, he is a firm believer that lifting your feet a little higher than is absolutely necessary when you walk is a complete waste of energy. He’s a calm person, he never rushes but tripping is something he does famously.
I, on the other hand, am famous for tripping over tent ropes. My right eye has been blind from birth so I know no different but my lack of true three-dimensional vision is sometimes a problem. If a tent rope is on my right side, I have no chance. Rocks that are similar in color hinder my depth perception which can be quite dangerous on a hike. If you ever wave hello and I don’t wave back, consider which side of me you're standing on.
Another time, we walked to the top of an outlook with a beautiful vista you could see for miles. There was a sheer cliff with a drop of 393 feet, the same height as a 36 story building. At the end of this cliff, in one area, there was a 3-foot space of nothingness and then a rocky outcrop about 6.5 feet in diameter. As I arrived at the top, it was just in time to see my son put his iPad down (he’d been taking photographs) and say: “I’m just going to put this down here before I jump”!! I asked him (calmly ... I was quite proud of myself) where he was going to jump to and he pointed to this outcropping with a sheer 393-foot drop in between! We had an intense chat there and then about the difference between adventure and wisdom.
Which first aid kit should you get for a larger group?
There are many benefits to having this kit for large group camping:
It’s good to have an assembly point in case of an emergency. A bright red bag is perfect for that and should be placed in an area that everyone in your group can see. A kit with MOLLE compatible straps should enable you to attach it to a tree that is easily accessible to anyone who needs it. If someone can’t get to the station, another person in your party can just rip the kit from the Velcro panel and take it where it needs to go.
Water Resistant & Water Proof
A robust water-resistant bag is a good choice – it can withstand weather changes but you wouldn’t want to leave it in a downpour over an extended period. The contents of this bag are all housed in waterproof laminate bags, so even if your kit gets a little wet, your supplies should stay dry.
We once camped in the mountains for 8 days and it rained for 6 of those 8 days. We eventually had to drive to the nearest town to buy rubber boots as the campsite was drenched in deep puddles, but, we stayed - we soldiered through! Weather changes can take us by surprise. It is best if the bag itself is rugged enough to withstand weather changes and rough handling.
The Number Of Supplies
You need a good amount of first aid supplies to handle a larger group over a short period of time. This kit has 200 very useful first aid items you can check out here.
In addition to these supplies, I would also include an Epi-Pen, antihistamines, pain relievers, nausea tablets, Imodium, and some Neosporin. Always have a kit that has a good supply base and then add your own over-the-counter medicine supplies. That way, you have what YOU need and you won’t have to keep throwing out expired medication, just add the meds before you go. All of these supplies will fit in the extra space provided in the kit.
A Mini-Kit For Hikes
If I went on a hike, I would take the removable mini-kit and some duct tape on the trail with me. The main kit is highly portable but maybe a little too big to hike with, that’s why there’s a 50 piece mini-kit inside - ingenious. Hook the kit and the tape via carabiners or straps and you’re good to go.
Other useful supplies to think about taking with you:
It’s a really strong one and specifically made for outdoor use. The great thing about it is even though it’s strong it has easy tear technology and can be torn from the side. Not only can this tape be used to fix tarps and tents but also to make makeshift arm slings, leg splint tape, and cordage. I’ve even seen a makeshift cup being made from this duct tape. Pack multi-use items – it’s a space saver.
Or both! It’s always great to have a “just in case” supply of useful things, after all, we have no control over the weather. Having at least 3 different ways of making a fire will cover all your bases and remedy the “who forgot the matches” situation.
When something is labeled and organized, everyone in the camp will know where to find a supply when it’s needed. This is really important in situations that require a quick response. There is nothing worse than someone needing a supply urgently – like an EpiPen – when time is of the essence and you have to upend an entire kit to find the jolly thing. None of that! You need to know where everything is and be able to get to it at a moment’s notice.
The main thing is that while you’re having fun with a group of friends or family, you know that there is something you can get to easily in case of an emergency. As people say: You hope never to have to use it, but it’s invaluable to have it when you need it.