Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Growl! How to stay safe in the woods

I once took an early morning walk in the woods in Virginia near the Wintergreen resort and saw a black bear cross the road. No one back in the cabin believed me and they still jeer at me.

But I digress.

Paul Auerbach, MD, a professor at Stanford and outdoor health type, wrote a 2300-page book on staying safe in the wild.

Bear (heh) in mind—his background is emergency medicine, which about confirms my love of the out-of-doors.

Coupla tips:

If you fall overboard, try to get most of your body out of the water—even it a cold breeze hits it.

Avoid the “bends” by coming up slowly—and also by not flying too soon after diving. Wait 12 hours before getting on a plane.

If you go to the tropics, acclimate—do some exercise, Avoid booze. Drink water. If you take a diuretic or beta blocker, ask the doc about this before you go.

If you are in bear country—don’t pick berries, if you see salmon in a stream, avoid that stream. If you see ravens—there may be a carcass—and the bear that caused it. If a bear suddenly appears, move slowly. Do not look the beast in the eye. Don’t try to run or climb a tree.

If you get caught in a fire—try to find a rocky place. Stay in your car if it’s nearby. Turn on the A/C and engine. Try to wait it out.

Of course, this is just a little—2200 pages to go! How about a movie instead?

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