Hot answers tagged

119

There don't seem to be any detailed statistics, but common-sense will tell you that open-water swimming away from the shore is not risk-free. The hazards can be split into four categories: 1 - Wind and currents Even in the Med wind and currents can be problematic. On one windy day in 2013, for example, seven swimmers drowned along just one stretch of the ...


91

Wild dogs can indeed be dangerous, and packs can be extremely dangerous. You do not want to take on a pack of dogs if you can at all avoid it, and running is often a particularly bad idea. I suggest starting with the basics: try to keep the dog calm and don't try to intimidate it. This means: Don't make direct eye contact, and remember that sunglasses ...


86

Just because there are grasses (Poaceae) with edible and nutritious parts does not mean that this applies to all grasses. That is pretty common-place. A quick Google search give you all the info you need: Many grasses are edible, in the sense that you can eat it; you simply won't get any energy/nutrients out of it. They consist mostly of cellulose, and ...


59

Well, there's the obvious issue that the bottom may shelve very steeply, so that non-swimmers trying to paddle may drown. Beyond that, I think there's a specific point and a more general point. Specifically, deep water is more dangerous in terms of cold water shock. In the first 3-5 minutes after entering cold water there can be a gasp reflex or muscle ...


58

It can be used for sure, but there are better options. A knife would require you to be very close to the dog, whilst a stick or pepper spray would provide much greater distance between you and the threat. Pepper spray is used by the US Postal Service, and they have lots of experience with dog bites. Of course, if you can avoid aggressive dogs in the first ...


54

It's not the fall that gets you, it's the sudden stop at the end. The most detailed data on the effects of large accelerations (or equivalently, decelerations) on the human body comes from research into spaceflight and aircraft ejection systems. There is a very detailed paper from NASA here, from which figure 5 (p. 36) is most useful. The summary is: it ...


53

No you should not use a bicycle helmet for climbing. They are designed for different types of impacts and will not provide you with proper protection outside of their designed activity. Bicycle helmets are designed for a SINGLE ground impact. Like modern cars they are designed to crumple and absorb the energy from an impact. They probably provide the ...


51

Lots of swim/board shorts come with key keepers in the pockets. Chances are you may even have one in the swimwear you own. It's simply a length of elastic cord stitched into your pocket. If you don't have one, it can easily be added. You attach your keys to the loop using a girth hitch:


49

The other answers already told you about exhaustion, I can tell you firsthand how dangerous cramps could be. I was swimming together with my former girlfriend in Ustka, Poland on the coast of the Baltic Sea. I would say that I am an average swimmer with a good constituition so I can swim several kilometers and I never had cramps before. There was no ...


49

Your primary objective when defending yourself against stray dogs is not to kill the dog, but to avoid getting bitten make the dog leave you alone If you fight a dog with a knife, even if you manage to kill it or make it run away, you will likely get a few bites and scratches. Having a stick or pepper spray is a much better option, as it gives you a range ...


46

I don't backpack, but I canoe camp and I used to do it with small children. We took a watch and used it for three things: we need to have all the work done and food eaten by the time it's dark, say 9pm, so we need to land by [whatever] pm to set up camp and cook. this food needs to cook for 20 minutes (or this bread needs to rise for 2 hours) that portage ...


46

My family walks around barefoot all the time, not just in the summer. We used to live in Santa Clara County, California, but now live in Humboldt County of the same state. We've never had any serious problems and I would not discourage from doing this but there are several disadvantages: By far the biggest disadvantage is that you will face significant ...


45

There is no specific distance from which a person can fall and have it said they will survive or not survive. There are simply too many variables that will dominate the factor of "distance." In 1971, flight attendant Vesna Vulović fell 10,160 meters (~33,300 ft) and survived without a parachute. On the other hand 556,000 people died in 2013 from slip-and-...


44

It is of course possible, but definitely not something I would recommend. The most common method for repelling without gear is the Dülfersitz method (invented by climbing pioneer Hans Dülfer). It involves wrapping the rope around your body in such a way as to allow you to better control your descent. The rope first goes between your legs front to back, then ...


44

If the snow was hard packed enough that a self arrest is not possible, and there are no intermediate anchors, then if one person falls, they can take the whole team down with them. If that was the case then what they should have done is to have the first person place anchors as they went up, either snow pickets or ice screws depending on the conditions. The ...


44

While doing the West Coast Trail in Vancouver, Canada I had to buy a watch for the first time. I had a table with the tides for that week and I needed the watch to tell if high tide was going to get me while going through different parts of the track. I knew how long hiking through the tide-dependent section would take me and needed the watch to tell at ...


43

Anybody who has severe allergies which could lead to anaphylaxic shock should carry appropriate medication with them. Typically, that would consist of: An antihistamine (e.g. benadryll) An epinephrine auto-injector (aka "Epi-Pen") Benadryll is available over the counter and you should have it in your first aid kit. Epi is by prescription only (at least in ...


42

To the question of whether you should run from a pack of dogs that may be aggressive, the answer is an unqualified NO!. As to what you should do, the answer is a bit more complicated. In the vast majority of cases, dogs won't attack you without provocation. As always, assume the best but prepare for the worst. The basics: Be Prepared: Prevention is ...


41

When you're asking for the safest way to purify water, you're asking for the method that removes the most harmful stuff from the water, like bacteria, viruses and larger impurities like mud or sand. No one method is really perfect at removing everything, so I usually use a two-stage approach: Filter: If the water source is cloudy, your first step should be ...


41

Yes. No question. With top-roping, the belayer can be spacing-out quite a bit and still do their job with a minimum of risk. With one hand on the belay tool, and another sensing the tension of the rope to the climber, you feel when there is some slack, then haul it in without even thinking. If the climber falls, it's rare the fall with be more than a foot ...


38

How much sea water can I safely drink? = None If you drink sea water, how much fresh water do you need to drink to off set the sea water you drank? = 2.8 units of distilled water per 1 unit of sea water (to neutralize without adding hydration) The "scientific" answer to this question involves a lot of complex math, human physiology and significant ...


38

Several years ago, I helped two men move a large turtle about 1,000 feet to a stream. They had been driving by and saw the turtle on the road, and saw me in my driveway. I got a hand-truck and a snow shovel. They slid the snow-shovel under the turtle and eased him onto the hand-truck. (I don't remember which end of the turtle went on the hand-truck.) ...


38

There are a few ways to do this in addition to the previous answer. If you have a car with a hitch: This is what we use when we SCUBA dive. Since you are only swimming and presumably not going to great depths, you can also use a waterproof wallet. I have two varieties: Or: The wallets tend to run less than $10, the hitch lock is more like $30-$50.


37

In increasing order of complexity and price you have, Personal Locator Beacons Personal locator beacons are high-powered (typically, 5 watts) devices designed primarily to send out a personalized emergency distress signal. They generally require an open view of the sky to transmit successfully. Source Satellite Messengers (Like a Garmin inReach) Much ...


37

All of the resources that I can find say that it should be done with the screw tip pointing up and the hanger below with up to a twenty-degree angle from horizontal. Contrary to what you might think, the best angle for the screws is slightly upward, meaning the hanger is slightly lower than the teeth in the ice. This counterintuitive method is ...


36

Until just a few years ago I would have said tweezers. I use a tick key these days because it removes without squeezing the tick. I get between three and a dozen ticks a year (they like me), and I much prefer this to the tweezers. The big downside with tweezers is that you are compressing the tick's body and thus forcing liquid out of the tick and... ...


36

First, you won't need to make this observation if you routinely drink when you stop to rest, and if you eat something at least slightly salty whenever you snack (if your snacks include jerky or salted nuts you're more than covered.) Second, pay attention to your thirst. Many of us ignore our bodies for hours at a time - postponing bodily functions during a ...


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