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|Basic Safety Concerns for Campers|
Camping Safety Tips: Food, Water, Ticks
Camping out in the woods can be one of the most gratifying experiences
available for those who stress over the hustle and bustle of daily life
in or near a city.
The dangers of contemporary lifestyles and
environments can themselves drive people to the slow pace of the woods.
Crime, careless drivers, pollution, identify theft. Who needs it!
While seeking a safe haven from the pitfalls of "civilization", the
camper must also bear in mind that the great outdoors is fraught with
its own set of dangers. Let's consider a few and how you can counter
Bacteria can invade many types of food, especially those high in
protein and moisture, such as milk, milk products, eggs, meat, poultry,
fish, shellfish, cream pies, custards and potato salad. After
preparation, these foods must be kept either hot (above 140 degrees
Fahrenheit) or cold (below 45 degrees Fahrenheit). Between the two
temperature ranges lurks the danger.
A camper who does not have the means of sustaining food that can easily
spoil outside of those thermometer readings should not bring them on
the trip at all. It would be much safer to bring canned food and garden
Exposed food should be prepared prior to the trip and protected in
plastic prior to icing them since ice can trap harmful bacteria. For
example, though ice pulled from a frozen stream in winter can help to
keep food cold, it should never be permitted to touch the food itself.
And whether eating meals from a picnic table or sitting on the ground,
always cover the eating area with something clean, like a plastic table
Any food that you suspect may be spoiled should be disposed of rather
than eaten. The risk is just too high.
CLEAN DRINKING WATER
When you are thirsty, there is nothing like a cold, clear glass of
water to satisfy. At home, our tap water is normally relatively safe,
though many people opt to filter it through one means or another to
improve the odds of safe drinking.
Aside from water that is purified for us, however, it has been
estimated that the vast majority of surface water in the US fails to
meet government standards for intake safety.
When you are camping without your own water (or a sufficient supply)
and are not at a camp ground that has purified running water available,
you will need to take additional measures to protect yourself from
water contaminated by bacteria and viruses.
There are fundamentally four options for accomplishing this. The first
you can do at the camp site. The other three require preparation prior
to heading out to the camp site.