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Roadside Emergency Kit Recommendations and Checklist

The best roadside emergency kit for your vehicle depends on your driving needs. In this post we list "must have" items for every vehicle, as well as other tools and supplies that are helpful for a variety of emergencies. Choose the items that make sense for your vehicle, and keep them organized in a backpack or tote.

The best roadside emergency kit for your vehicle depends on your driving needs. In this post we list “must have” items for every vehicle, as well as other tools and supplies that are helpful for a variety of emergencies. Choose the items that make sense for your vehicle, and keep them organized in a backpack or tote.

Many of us drive somewhere nearly every day. Even if you haven't had a roadside emergency yourself, odds are you've seen or at least heard of an accident or disabled car. Driving long distance whether for work or on vacation adds to your risk. Having basic roadside emergency kit supplies in your vehicle is important for you and those you may end up helping. Think about what you might deal with, and if you have the training to handle a situation. Then stock your roadside kit and know you have what you need when you need it.

Roadside emergency kit supplies fall into eight basic categories:

  1. Tools
  2. First Aid Kit
  3. Breakdown & Towing Equipmnet
  4. Hygiene & Comfort Items
  5. General Supplies
  6. Seasonal Items
  7. Shelf stable emergency food and water
  8. A Get Home Bag

Over the years we have increased the items we carry around in the trunk of our cars or back of the van. These are our top recommendations. Items with the “must have” red tag are suggested for all vehicles.

Roadside Emergency Kit Tools

1. Roadside Emergency Kit Tools

Yellow Buck Rescue Knife

  • One or two good knives. A must have item We suggest a Rescue knife in drivers side door, glove compartment or any other location within reach of the driver. The buck rescue knife is crazy sharp and has a seat belt cutter and can break windows. TIP: The headrest can also come off and the metal “spikes” can break the glass of a window. If the Buck Rescue isn't what you want there are hundreds of good knives. We suggest Kershaw, Buck, Spyderco or Ontario. Here are some good alternatives: Kershaw Cryo, Buck 110FG, spyderco and Ontario RAT II. in the emergency kit in the trunk. Make sure you test whatever knife you choose. We used the buck rescue knife and spyderco before they became our go-to emergency car knives.
  • Car Fire extinguisher

Atactical A1S Neutral White LED Flashlight, Pocket-Sized LED Torch, Super Bright 1150 Lumens CREE LED, IPX7 Water Resistant, 5 Modes Low/Mid/High/Trubo/ Strobe for Indoors and Outdoors

  • Flashlights. Must Have We suggest three or more flashlights. This is due to experience. My husband August stopped in the dark to help clear and accident. The traffic going both directions didn't slow down, even with his flashers on. When he put the flashlight with the strobe light on, facing into traffic, cars slowed down and if he had a 2nd facing into tail traffic both of them would have felt safer. He needed the 3rd to see what he was doing in the dark. Consider any of these:
  • USB Charger. An extra Anker 24W Dual USB Car Charger and spare cables for each type of cellphone

Actopus Heavy-Duty Truck Tire Pressure Gauge - 10 to 150 PSI

  • Tire pressure gauge Must Have You need to be able to check your tire pressure. We recommend a manual one, it doesn't require batteries.
  • Paracord to make makeshift tent, tie a door closed or hood

Leatherman Wave multitool

  • A Leatherman Wave multi-tool for quick repair
  • Pepper spray for personal protection (grab this for you get home bag)
  • Basic toolkit although most cars are complicated enough that we may not be able to fix them, we can use the toolkit to make very minor or temporary repairs. I have had my mirror torn off or damaged by deer or other animals or debris numerous times so far in my life, and duct tape and a tool kit let me repair it temporarily a few of those times.

Roadside Emergency Kit First Aid Supplies

2. Roadside Emergency First Aid Kit Must Have

You need to know how to perform basic first aid. You can get that training online or attend classes for $25 to $200. When you buy a first aid kit, learn how to use everything inside that kit. A vehicle first aid kit should have items to handle serious injures such as controlling serious bleeding, managing burns & head injuries and dealing with broken bones and of course handling minor emergencies. The kit should also help with managing shock and even dealing with cardiac arrest. You might want to have a tiny first aid kit in your get home bag and a larger kit in the car.Emergency Medical KitGet a first aid kit to help you and others until help arrives. The Adventure Medical or Survival Solutions are good “small kits”. The 12 survivors roll is our favorite medium sized first aid kit, but it requires customization. For more information see the Best First Aid Kit and Build Your Own Custom First Aid Kit

Don't forget, personal prescriptions, medications and other items like inhalers or an EpiPen and/or feminine supplies as needed.

Roadside Emergency Kit Jumper Cables

3. Roadside Emergency Kit – Breakdowns and Towing Equipment

CBC25 Heavy Duty 2 Gauge Wire Extra Long 25 Feet Ft Length 600 Amp Copper Plate Parrot Jaw Auto Booster Jumper Jumping Cable by CTT

  • Jumper cables Must Have Heavy gauge means less resistance so more amperage for the jump
  • One or preferably two pair of work gloves Must Have (make sure you pick your correct sizes)
  • Tire Iron and a heavy duty scissor car jack Must Have Note: some cars come with a single arm tire iron.

Smittybilt CC330 3" x 30' Recovery Strap - 30,000 lb Capacity - Towing Strap

  • Heavy Tow Strap if you have ever towed someone, a strap is a LOT safer than just rope or chain.
  • Fuse kit various types
  • Sheet of heavy cardboard or large kneeling pad (to work under the vehicle if required)
  • Quick flat recovery Fix a Flat (or similar)
  • Road Flares or Road Flags Must Have Electronic Road Flares these avoid the risk of fire but require 6 AAA batteries (Lithium or Rechargeable) and you might also want Road warning flags because they don't have batteries.
  • Get a REAL spare tire if possible and make sure it has correct pressure
  • Make a paper phone and contact cheat sheet in case your cellphone dies or is damaged

Roadside Emergency Kit Hygiene and Personal Comfort Items

4. Roadside Emergency Kit Personal Hygiene & Comfort Items

  • Toilet Paper. Must Have The #1 thing you need in the car kit are a few rolls of toilet paper (just in case). You can use individually wrapped singles or just buy a bulk pack and put a couple rolls in ziplock bags. A family friend was in World War II and he said “the 1st time we went in, we carried all the ammo we could. The 2nd time we went in, we carried all the toilet paper we could.” Take his advice. An alternates are camping toilet wipes or compressed rolls (but the compressed ones need a bit of water to expand).

Wool Blanket

  • Wool Blanket wool will stay warm even when somewhat wet, and even if you have a sleeping bag – it makes a good ground liner if you aren't in your vehicle.
  • Small Pillow in case you have to sleep in the car or want to just take a quick nap.
  • Small water resistant sleeping bag. We live in Wisconsin, so winter is cold and even summer nights can be also. A sleeping bag is in all winter and during long trips in the summer. You may also want a roll-up sleeping bag pad
  • Bright colored safety vest or poncho to make yourself more visible if you end up working near traffic, or walking along a road especially in low visibility.
  • Lip balm
  • Keep an extra pair of prescription glasses, sunglasses and/or contacts in your car. Remember, the sunglasses are as important in the winter snow as in the summer glare.
  • Kleenex and some wipes
  • Toothbrush, floss and toothpaste
  • Feminine hygiene items as needed Must Have

5. Roadside Emergency Kit General Supplies

  • Regional paper maps (track down your state), in case your cellphone dies or GPS doesn’t work for some reason. Rand McNally still makes state maps but they are getting harder to find.

Outdoor 3day Backpack

  • A good backpack such as the:
    • $40 Outdoor 3 Day Tactical Backpack which is 14.5″ x 21″ x 8″; holds about 2470 cubic inches and weighs 3.6 lbs
    • $80 Condor 3 Day Pack which is 22″ x 17″ x 11″; holds about 3038 cubic inches and weighs
    • If at all possible try wearing the backpack before you purchase it.
  • Duct Tape Must Have Duct Tape has an insane number of uses. It is like the force, it has a light side and dark side and binds the universe together. Have at least two rolls. It can seal a crack in a window, hold on a broken mirror, tape a trunk shut or in first aid situations: immobilize a limb, create temporary splints and even bandages. We keep a couple of rolls and have been happy to have them in the car and van many times.
  • A couple of Sharpie pens. Must Have They can be used to write on pretty much anything, which is useful in an emergency.
  • Small Journal or simply a pen or pencil and spiral note pad.
  • Waterproof tablecloth or other clean surface to eat on or use as a safe clean work surface, or even a tarp.
  • Cash hidden in vehicle somewhere Must Have

LaCrosse BC1000 Battery Charger

  • Extra AA and AAA batteries.
    • We recommend getting Panasonic eneloop pro aaa or Tenergy rechargeable batteries as they both have very low self discharge, meaning they can last a long time in storage. AmazonBasics is another option. (TIP: Recharge them each spring and fall) If you choose rechargeable batteries you will want a AA and AAA battery charger such as the Lacrosse BC 1000
    • If you don't want to deal with rechargeable batteries consider the Energizer Ultimate Lithium which may last up to 15 years in storage.
  • 2 or 3 large 3mil garbage bags
  • 1 or 2 quarts of motor oil
  • Container of radiator fluid
  • Spray bottle with bug windshield washer fluid or deicer washer fluid depending on the time season and location (the windshield washer fluid can probably be found cheaper locally)
  • One extra set of wiper blades specific to your vehicle

Emergency Radio

  • Emergency crank radio this one can also charge a USB device
  • Compass has a whistle, tiny magnifying glass, compass and thermostat – the whistle is the key to get attention if your vehicle leaves the road.
  • BIC Lighters or waterproof matches or even flint & steel to start a fire. You can pack an old toilet paper cardboard roll with an old crayon in it surrounded by dryer lint. This roll will start a fire pretty much guaranteed and is tiny. The crayon burns like a fast candle (be careful).
  • A towel wrapped around a few cloth diapers, wash cloth or wash cloths is a great add on. You can use the wipes to clean up and towel to dry off.
  • Moist wipes Must Have are a good option also, a small package can help clean up a mess.

6. Roadside Emergency Kit Seasonal Items

For Winter see the Winter Car Kit Post

For high temperatures and plenty of sun, include:

  • Sun hat, light colored clothes, walking shoes, Rain poncho
  • Extra water
  • Sunscreen lotion, bug spray
  • Use a tarp, emergency blanket or shades to reduce the temperature in a vehicle or to create shade with rope and duct tape outside or near a vehicle.

Include a full change of clothes. Make sure you pack comfortable winter or summer clothes including socks and underwear. You need this in case you must walk home and aren't wearing the right clothes. Store the clothes in a plastic bag. Pack layers for variable weather. It should include walking shoes (or winter/summer walking boots) underwear, pants, socks, shirt and hat appropriate to the season.

7. Roadside Kit Emergency Food & Water

Lifestraw Personal Water Filter

  • Consider a Life Straw if you are likely to be far from help. Consider a gallon of drinking water per person. If you are in an area were freezing is likely, leave about 15% to 25% of the water out of the water bottle so it doesn't burst, and place inside ziplock bags in your kit, just in case. If you don't want to deal with bottles you can use use flexible water pouches
  • A few 1/4 to 1/3 full water bottle – 2 per person minimum Must Have
  • Candle in a metal container with waterproof matches and/ or Sterno – You can use this for heat or melting snow for water, or just keeping you from freezing.
  • Metal cup – for melting snow or scooping water to filter with your lifestraw
  • Snacks – (durable ones) such as granola bars, jerky or dried fruit. You might also want more long term items such as the SOS Food Bar or ER Food Bar Must Have (remember to avoid allergies and try some of the emergency food BEFORE an emergency)

8. Get Home BagExpandable Tactical Backpack

You should also have a “Get Home Bag” in your car. It could be as simple as repacking the backpack you already have in your trunk with items to get you home. Or it could be a purpose assembled seasonal bag exclusively designed to get you home over long distance. In most cases you will want to “steal” items from your car kit to supplement or “finalize” your get home bag. If you have the space, funds and time, it is best the get home bag is a custom kit you can grab and go. The Get Home Bag is similar to a Bug Out Bag.

Keeping Your Roadside Emergency Kit Organized

Key tips to help keep your roadside emergency kit organized:

  • Review the lists and select those items that make the most sense for your needs.
  • Group like items together.
  • Pack groups of items inside freezer zip lock bags. The empty bags can be used for other items and garbage. They can also be a safe spot to put your cellphone or other small items in a rainstorm or snowstorm.
  • Label everything.
  • Pack these small kits into backpack or tote to keep things organized and not use up your whole trunk.

It's been a motto of mine for many years to “hope for the best but prepare for the worst”. Hopefully you won’t ever have a major roadside emergency, but if you do run into trouble, you'll be glad you were prepared.

Leave a comment and let us know if we missed any “must have” items you like to keep on hand while traveling or commuting.

The best roadside emergency kit for your vehicle depends on your driving needs. In this post we list "must have" items for every vehicle, as well as other tools and supplies that are helpful for a variety of emergencies. Choose the items that make sense for your vehicle, and keep them organized in a backpack or tote.

Other Common Sense Preparedness posts you may find useful:

The post Roadside Emergency Kit Recommendations and Checklist appeared first on Common Sense Homesteading.

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Homemade Weapons You Can DIY To Awaken Your Inner Caveman

Learn to make your own homemade weapons so you’ll have a fighting chance in a survival situation where all you have is nature.

 [You Get One FREE] Weird Little Knife Drives TSA Crazy!

How to Make Homemade Weapons

Why Should You Learn to Make Homemade Weapons?

Let’s say you got lost in the wild, and you somehow forgot or lost your Cold Steel Leatherneck Tanto 39LSFT (or whichever is the best survival knife for you). What do you do?

While your situation is most likely not quite as bad as Tom Hanks had it in Castaway, let’s face it. The only way you’re gonna get out of this situation in good shape is to let out your inner caveman.

Let me explain. Our very primitive ancestors lived in a time when every day was a survival situation. Any tools or weapons they needed had to be made from scratch.

So, should you be unlucky enough to have only the shirt on your back while you’re lost in the wilderness, you’ll have to follow suit. Let the training of your inner caveman begin.

Today’s lesson: how to make DIY weapons in the wild with only the resources nature provided you.

How to Make a Knife | Homemade Weapons

Having a knife, any kind of knife is probably one of the best things to happen should you suddenly find yourself in a survival situation. You can use it to help you find food, build a shelter, and defend yourself against wild animals.

So it’s highly fortunate nature is waiting like a momma at a craft table with lots of materials you can use to create one.

1. Stone Knives

Bone, shell, bamboo, wood, or even an old aluminum beer can may work to perform the puncturing function of a blade. You know you’ve seen these a million times when you’re out hiking.

They’re easy to crack or break or shape into a fairly sharp point which will do in a pinch. Unfortunately, you’re not going to be able to use a chicken bone or an expertly-shaped aluminum can point to skin, chop, baton, or any of the other necessary functions of a survival knife.

This is where the stone comes into play. I’ll start by saying making a knife out of stone isn’t easy, but it can be done.

You’ll need three things: a core rock, a hammerstone, and a pressure flaker. Remember, you’re going to be smashing these together in true caveman fashion.

So, having stones you can reasonably grip in each hand is going to make your life a lot easier. Although, it’s definitely an option to stand poised over one rock smashing down on it.

You, with a two-hand grip, pounding until you’ve chipped away at it a bit. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

2. The Core Rock

rock formation background | Homemade Weapons You Can DIY To Awaken Your Inner Caveman | homemade weapons | deadliest ancient weapons

The core rock is what you’ll be making into a blade. Find any large stone, preferably made from obsidian, slate, chert, or flint with a relatively flat side.

In case you weren’t a rock collector in any of your previous lives, here’s another way to decide if a rock meets the requirements for good knife-making material. Tap or click a rock together with another rock and listen for a ringing sound (like glass).

The more rock sounds like glass, the better it is as a material for your core rock. If you can, choose a rock which is already a bit sharp to reduce the amount of time you’ll need to shape it.

3. The Hammerstone

The hammerstone is a medium-sized, spherical rock, preferably made of granite. It will be used to smash, chisel, chip and shape the core rock.

You’ll be using it to chip off pieces of the core stone and to narrow the edges to a blade shape.

RELATED: How To Keep Your Edge | Knife Sharpener

4. The Pressure Flaker

The pressure flaker, or flaking tool, is a rock with a sharp point to help you refine the blade’s edges. You’ll use your flaking tool after you’ve thinned the edges of the stone with the hammer stone to make the “blade” sharper.

When you start making your knife, you’ll want to be sure to wet the core stone to shorten the time it takes to shape it into a blade. Begin by striking glancing blows near the edge of the core rock with the hammerstone.

Chip away at the core rock until you get the general shape of a blade. Then, use the flaking tool to refine the edges you need to sharpen.

You can also use a stone with a rough surface such as a sandstone to sharpen the edge. Use some rope, cloth, or leather to lash the base and create a handle.

If you are having troubling shaping the rock into a knife, you can opt to create stone blades instead. Check out the videos below to learn how:

Part One:

Part Two:

How to Make a Spear | Homemade Weapons

south african zulu spear | Homemade Weapons You Can DIY To Awaken Your Inner Caveman | homemade weapons | deadliest ancient weapons

We’ve talked about how to make a spear using your best survival knife in a previous article. The same principle applies here.

Even without your Cold Steel Leatherneck Tanto 39LSFT or whichever survival knife you normally bring with you, you can still make a spear using your newly made stone knife. To make a spear, you’ll need to find a five-foot-long stick tough enough to endure repeated short or long-distance throws.

  1. First, pick the end of the stick which has a more rounded tip and use your stone knife to start shaving to create a spear. Once you’re done, be sure to heat the spear over some hot coals to make your spear sharper.
  2. As an alternative, you can also make a spear by tying your knife onto a stick. Find a stick which is about an inch wide.
  3. Measure about 2 inches from one end of the stick. Mark the point, then split the stick into two until you reach the 2-inch mark, creating a sort of Y shape.
  4. This will create a space where you can stick your stone knife before you lash it on with some twine, cord, or rope. To lock the blade in place, put some moss or lichen in the remaining space.
  5. If you haven’t had time to fashion your knife out of stone yet, you can also use broken pieces of shell or glass or splintered bamboo or bone and secure it to the end of your stick.
  6. If you find a way to split your stick without a knife, you can insert the splintered bone or bamboo into the wedge and tie it off like you would when turning a knife into a spear.

How to Make a Weighted Club | Homemade Weapons

While sharp pointy tools are all well and good, you can never go wrong with a blunt homemade weapon. You can use it for hammering or bludgeoning something such as a weighted club.

The weighted club could be one of the deadliest ancient weapons. To make one, you’ll need the following: a piece of wood around 14-16 inches, a medium-sized rock, and some rope.

  1. Once you have all the materials, you’ll need to wrap some lashing 6-8 inches from the end of the stick.
  2. Split the same end until you reach the lashing in order to create a V-shaped notch. The rock you picked out should be shorter than the length of the split.
  3. Insert the stone then lash it securely (above, below, and across the stone). The lashing on the stick above the stone clamps both sides of the split together providing the first point of security, so it’s especially important to create a good, tight lashing above the stone.
  4. You’ll want to make sure you bind the split ends securely so the stone won’t fall off whenever you use it to hammer or pound on something.

This video from Wannabe Bushcrafter will show you how to make a bamboo knife:

Now, hopefully, you never find yourself in a situation where making homemade weapons is going to be a necessity for survival. But, if you do find yourself in such a quagmire, this little bit of information and inner caveman training may be what saves your life.

Which of these homemade weapons do you want to make? Tell us your progress in the comments section below!

Up Next:

Go to our Survival Life Store to shop some of our favorites self-defense tools and gear!

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***Disclaimer: The contents of this article are for informational purposes only. Please read our full disclaimer.***

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on April 11, 2014, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.

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5 Home Remedies For Chigger Bites

Know these home remedies for chigger bites, or better yet, avoid the bug's bites in the first place with helpful tips included here!

RELATED: Top Ways to Deal with Insects [Especially Mosquitos]

In this article:

  1. What Is a Chigger, Exactly?
  2. Where Do Chiggers Live?
  3. Identifying Chiggers Bites
  4. Home Remedies for Chigger Bites
  5. Tips to Avoid Chigger Bites and Chigger Bites Infection

Home Remedies For Chigger Bites

What Is a Chigger, Exactly?

Chiggers are members of the arachnid family. They are extremely tiny, and my guess is you won’t even see them as they jump from the tall grass onto your skin and/or clothing.

Adult chiggers are about 1/60 of an inch and have eight legs. The larvae are red, wingless, six-legged creatures which measure less than 1/150 of an inch.

Because of their red color, you might be able to spot the larvae when they cluster together, especially on white clothing.

What Is the Arachnid Family? It is a large group or class of invertebrate animals where the spiders and scorpions belong.

Where Do Chiggers Live?

Chiggers reside in tall weeds and grass, berry patches, and wooded areas. They could be in your backyard, by the lake, or your favorite hiking trail.

They are most active in summer and fall afternoons – the warmest part of the day.

Identifying Chiggers Bites

Only the larvae bite humans and they tend to choose warm, moist areas of the body.

Chiggers also have claws which help them grab onto your skin. The chigger then attaches its mouth to the skin and injects saliva.

The saliva contains an enzyme which breaks skin cells down to liquid form. Your body responds by hardening skin cells around the saliva, creating a tube (cyclostome) through which the chigger sucks the dissolved skin cells.

Chiggers can stay attached and feeding for several days before falling off.

When the chigger falls off, you are left with reddish bumps. You may notice a bright red dot in the center—this is a remnant of the tube your skin formed in response to the chigger's saliva.

The bumps may look like welts, blisters, pimples, or hives. Bites generally appear in groups and get larger for several days to a week.

While many insects bite exposed skin which is easy to get to, chiggers like to bite in folds of skin as well as places where clothing fits tightly on the skin. Most chigger bites occur around the ankles, waist, armpits, crotch, or behind the knees.

Home Remedies for Chigger Bites

Just remember, no matter what, DO NOT SCRATCH THE BITES! I know, easier said than done. But, breaking the skin on a chigger bite can lead to infection.

Here are 5 home remedies to help with the itching and swelling.

RELATED: Spider Bite? Here’s How To Treat It

1. Vicks Vapor Rub

Vicks Vapor Rub can put an end to itchy chigger bites immediately and will even reduce the risk of blisters. It’s the cooling menthol in it which relieves itching by affecting itch receptors in the skin.


  • Take a hot shower (use antibacterial soap.) Pat dry your skin with a soft towel.
  • Take a small amount of the vapor rub and add some table salt to it.
  • Mix well and apply to the affected area.
  • Repeat if the swelling continues (otherwise, there is no need to repeat the process)

2. Cold Compress

A cold compress can help reduce the itching associated with chigger bites. Its numbing effect helps reduce the sensation of itchiness.


  • Wrap some ice cubes in a thin cloth.
  • Apply the compress to the bites for 10 minutes. Repeat if needed to relieve itching.

3. Baking Soda

Baking soda is another effective remedy to reduce rashes as well as itchiness. It acts as a natural acid neutralizer which helps relieve itching and reduces the risk of infection.


  • Add 1 cup of baking soda to a bathtub filled with cool water.
  • Stir well and soak in this water for 15 minutes and pat your skin with a soft towel. (Do this once daily)

Another remedy using baking soda:

  • Prepare a thin paste of 2 teaspoons of baking soda and a little water.
  • Apply the paste on the affected areas and leave it on for about 10 minutes.
  • Rinse it off with cool water.

Note: Do not use this remedy more than once or twice a day. Never use baking soda on broken skin or open wounds.

4. Oatmeal

Oatmeal contains anti-irritating, anti-inflammatory and soothing properties providing instant relief from itching–one of the common symptoms of chigger bites. It is recommended to use colloidal oatmeal, meaning oats which are ground into an extremely fine powder.

(You can accomplish this yourself by grinding regular oats in a sealed Ziploc bag, using the backside of a spoon to crush the oatmeal.)


  • Add 1 cup of colloidal oatmeal to a bathtub filled with warm water
  • Stir thoroughly
  • Soak in this mixture for at least 15-20 minutes
  • Repeat 2-3 times a day

5. Olive Oil

Olive oil can also be used to get relief from the irritation and inflammation. It is rich in vitamin E and antioxidants which reduce itching and facilitate healing.


  • After rinsing the affected area with water, apply olive oil to the chigger bite.
  • Reapply several times a day.

Another option using olive oil:

  • Mix a few drops of tea tree oil in 1 tablespoon of olive oil and apply on the affected area.
  • Repeat a few times a day.

Tips to Avoid Chigger Bites and Chigger Bites Infection

As summer and fall are prime time for chigger bites, it is best to take the following precautions:

  1. When hiking, stay in the center of the trail and avoid brushing up against vegetation.
  2. Wear long sleeves and long pants when going into the woods.
  3. Apply mosquito repellent on your hands, feet, and exposed skin on your arms before going outside.
  4. Shower immediately after being outdoors and use antibacterial soap.
  5. Wash your clothes in hot water.
  6. Resist the urge to scratch because breaking the skin on chigger bites can lead to a possible infection.

This video from Online Pest Control will show you tips to avoid chiggers and ways to get rid of chiggers:

Chigger bites much like other insect bites aren't only discomforting, they can be dangerous too. Many of these insects including chiggers carry diseases in some cases.

The best way to deal with these bugs is to avoid them or control them with our tips here. But, if you're so unlucky, you also now know the best home remedies to chigger bites!

Have you had to deal with chigger bites before? Tell us how, including more useful tips which worked for you in the comments section below!

Up Next:

Go to our Survival Life Store to shop some of our favorites self-defense tools and gear!

Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and Tumblr!

***Disclaimer: The contents of this article are for informational purposes only. Please read our full disclaimer.***

Home Remedies For Chigger Bites |

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on June 28, 2016, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.

This Article Was First Found at Read The Original Article Here

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9 Good Reasons To Carry A “Survival Stick”

Arm yourself with a survival stick, get savvy with it, but first, find out why as you read on!

RELATED: Deadly Parasols | Umbrella As A Self-Defense Weapon

In this article:

  1. Survival Hiking Stick
  2. Survival Stick for Support
  3. Fetching/Reaching Things
  4. Walking Staff Weapon for Self-Defense
  5. Balance
  6. Gauging Depth
  7. Carrying Gear and Supplies
  8. Club
  9. Fishing Rod

Survival Stick: An Underrated Multipurpose Tool?

The Survival Stick in History

A walking stick or a survival cane were popular in the 17th and 18th centuries as a decorative show of power and a defensive replacement for a sword. Yet, the truth is our ancestors have been using them for thousands of years, and for good reason…

…They work! Even the animal kingdom is smart enough to know just how useful these are:

(It may be hard to see, but this gorilla is holding a walking stick to gauge the depth of the water as she sloshes along)

A walking stick is not a new or revolutionary idea. In fact, the use of a walking stick predates history and its use continued on for generations including this present time.

Yet, it is one which is more often than not overlooked. When most people think of a walking stick, it is usually paired with a top hat or seen as a crutch for someone with a walking disability.

Far too few people even realize how important a walking stick can be, especially to someone in the outdoors. We will dig a little deeper into the many uses of a survival stick and maybe safely say, it could be the first multi-purpose survival tool.

Practical and Survival Uses for a Survival Stick

Walking sticks are also known as trekking poles, pilgrim's staffs, hiking poles and hiking staff have quite a few different uses:

1. Survival Hiking Stick

Hold the survival stick in front of you and you can use it to clear your way by parting brushes and branches or leaves and thick tall grasses. You can also use it to clear spiderwebs, especially if you're not too fond of spiders.

Other insects, animals, poisonous plants, and even animal dung can get in the way. Use a survival stick to inspect or poke at those things if you are unsure, and never ever your hands or your feet.

2. Survival Stick for Support

Hiker in Caucasus mountains is crossing mountain river | Good Reasons To Carry A "Survival Stick" | hiking staff
Making your way through an uneven terrain will be more manageable with a walking stick for support. Whether you're going up or down, use the walking stick to either slow you down or hold you up.

You can use your walking stick like breaks to keep you from speeding down or use it to latch on to a rock or crevice when you're climbing up. Besides for yourself, you can also use your multipurpose stick as a support for your tarp emergency shelter.

3. Fetching/Reaching Things

It happens–a supply or gear falling on water, mud, puddle or in an area you dare not walk into. You can fetch or reach for those items with a stick.

It also happens where you need an item over a physical barrier and only a stick can fetch the item for you. You can also reach for fruits, nest, or other food sources up a tree or high structure with a stick.

RELATED: Unusual Weapons From Around The World And How To Use Them

4. Walking Staff Weapon for Self-Defense

To use a survival stick as a weapon, make sure it's a sturdy stick with a finished look and not just any stick you found along the way. You can use it to defend yourself from an attacker whether it's human or animals.

I would suggest to train yourself in some form of martial arts using a stick like a baton as a weapon to have a better handle at it.

You can also fashion a spear with your stick by tying a survival knife on one end. Don't throw this spear though or you risk damaging or losing your knife and stick.

Hold on to your homemade spear and only use it to thrust at your target.

5. Balance

Hiker is crossing the river in Sweden | Hiker in Caucasus mountain | Good Reasons To Carry A "Survival Stick" | survival hiking stickWhen you're crossing a log bridge over a stream or you're going through the stream itself or other bodies of water, a walking stick can help you balance so you don't fall over. If you're walking through a muddy or rocky waterbed, a walking stick will help you up.

If you're up for it and if the body of water isn't too wide across, you can also use a long stick like a pole vault to cross over so you don't get yourself wet.

6. Gauging Depth

Relative to crossing bodies of water, a survival stick is handy in identifying dips beneath the waters which could cause you to stumble. You can also use the stick to identify where it's safe to take the next step.

You can also use this simple trick with the stick when you're traveling in deep snow, marshland, and even the dessert.

7. Carrying Gear and Supplies

Use your survival stick to help you carry gear and supplies. Pack your supplies with a shemagh, tie it tight to one end of your stick then place the stick over your shoulders in hobo fashion.

You can also carry more supplies with your survival stick. Even today, a carrying pole is used by indigenous people all over the world to carry heavy supplies you never thought possible.

Hang bags of supplies or jars of water on either side of the pole or stick, putting a stopper like a notch or tie on both ends so they don't fall off. Place the center of the stick over your shoulders and balance your load to your destination.

8. Club

Man carrying blue backpack | Good Reasons To Carry A "Survival Stick" | walking staff weapon
Use your survival stick like a club to knock obstacle down. A pillar of rocks or other objects may be on your way and a sturdy stick can help you safely knock those.

If you are in a building with glass doors or windows or inside a car, you can break the glass with a stick. Make to knock over pieces around your entrance or exit with the stick, too.

9. Fishing Rod

You only need to bring a fishing kit and your survival stick will make a good fishing rod. Tie a line on one end of your walking stick and fish away.

A DIY fishing pole is actually effective and many a fish has been caught this way.

As you guys and gals already know, I am a stickler for carrying things only if they have multiple uses. This guy managed to fit almost an entire survival kit into a walking stick he built from scratch, for under $20.00.

Check out this video from SOS 2054 I found, and find out for yourself, too:

A humble walking stick will indeed surprise you with what it can do for your defense, convenience, safety, and survival. Since you know now the practical and survival uses of this primitive multi-purpose tool, it won't surprise me if it lands a top spot on your list of survival tools for camping, hiking, or SHTF.

What other uses can you think of for carrying a “survival stick”? Let us know in the comments section below!

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**Disclaimer: The contents of this article are for informational purposes only. Please read our full disclaimer.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on October 11, 2013, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.

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