As hikers, campers, and backpackers, we possess the skills and usually the necessary equipment to make it through a natural disaster.

How Camping Prepares You For Natural Disaster

You don’t have to be a survival-skills expert to get through a natural disaster. Chances are, if you’re into camping, you’re more prepared than most. When Hurricane Irma struck the state of Florida, Dave V., a Dyrt Ranger, knew a worst-case scenario meant he might not come back to a home. Confident in his ability to survive, Dave realized that with a truck full of camping gear he could ride out the hurricane.

Some of the gear Dave V. used to survive.

Dave made it, and, thankfully, so did his home. Read his post on Facebook below:

“Right before Irma hit us in SWFL, I figured I might not come back to a home, so I put my two bins of backpacking/camping gear in the truck. Who knew, right?! You lose electricity, so no lights, stove, fridge, freezer or AC, etc. The city shuts down water, so it minimizes contamination. Trees are felled by 130 mph winds. So how do you get through? As hikers, campers, and backpackers…we possess the skills and usually the necessary equipment to make it quite comfortably. So far, I’ve had to use my Sven Saw to cut fallen trees to navigate streets, use my Primus Campfire Utility Sack to collect water (both to filter for consumption and to use to flush toilets). My Primus Primetech stove is cooking me breakfast and dinner. Sawyer and Katadyn are filtering my drinking water. Every headlamp and flashlight are being employed for illumination. My Gregory Baltoro Goal Zero 75 is soaking up and storing energy so I can power this phone to communicate. Use what you know and have. Not to minimize one bit the destruction that occurred down here, but I had no reason to panic … I was confident of my ability to sustain. Excuse me why I fire up the stove for some Mountain House goodness! My favorite…Chicken Fajita Bowl!”

Here are the 5 camping skills Dave said helped him get through Hurricane Irma.

1. Trail Cleanup Becomes Street Cleanup

Never underestimate what a high-quality folding saw will cut through. It’s easy to fit in your back pocket and incredibly useful when you have to remove fallen trees and branches.

2. Water Collection is Second Nature

That water may look crystal clear, but it can still contain various bacteria that cause illness. Water filtration is essential in the backcountry and even more so during a natural disaster.

3. Cooking on the Fly Has Never Been So Helpful

Backpacking stoves are an important asset when it comes to survival situations. They require minimum fuel, work in just about any weather and can boil water quickly.

4. Practice Using Headlamps

When you have to light up the darkness, headlamps will out shine candles and lanterns every time. Plus, you’re able to see what you’re doing and have both hands free to work.

5. Off-Grid Power Sources Are Close at Hand

Harness the power of the sun and keep your tent, picnic table, and even house lit for hours.

BONUS: Here’s How You Can Help

These camping-hero skills will help you survive a natural disaster. However, if you want to be a real hero and help those who are struggling post-Hurricane Irma, then you can donate here.

Kristen Byrne

Kristen Byrne

Kristen is a journalist turned digital account manager at The Dyrt. She has worked for various TV stations and newspapers, and now focuses on content creation for tech-loving outdoor enthusiasts. Chances are good she's outside, hiking, climbing, skiing, or exploring. Just know that you can count on her to bring canned wine to the campfire.