Wether you are hiking in the backwoods,or just spending a day at the beach, a first aid kit is a critical piece of gear to have. You will want a kit that fits your activities and the amount of people you are with. We have a large kit that stays in our car and is capable of treating multiple people, as well as a small backpacking kit for when we are on shorter hikes. In this article we will go over what we have in our kits to give you a better idea of what you need.
The Big Kit
It is important to pick a case that will not only hold everything you need, but also keep it organized. In an emergency time is of the essence, so make sure you pick a case that is easy to open and organized. For our kit we chose the Ever Ready First Aid Large EMT First Responder Trauma Bag.
This bag has is very brightly colored which makes it easy to spot no matter where is it! It has two large pockets on each side, and a nice large compartment with dividers in the middle. We chose this bag because, even when fully loaded, it is not to tall to fit in the spare tire compartment of out Jeep (It might not fit if you actually have a spare tire!). On the left side of the bag we have an emergency blanket, sterile compress, and a case with feminine pads and tampons.
The other pocket has a basic first aid kit that is set up for small injuries. The smaller kit is great for small things like scrapes and cuts and can be grabbed quickly. We have gloves to keep bodily fluids off your hands, disinfectant, and antibiotic ointment. This pocket also has extras like bandages, ointments, etc…
The middle pocket houses a few smaller kits which we detail below.
In the middle of the kit we have some wrap bandages, finger splints, more gauze, trash bags, and light.
In the larger pocket in the middle we have some really cool Moldable Splints (Pictured Below). We have not had to use these yet (Knock on wood! Haha!) but they will do the trick and are more comfortable than a tree branch.
When have a small kit that holds all of our medicine. We keep aspirin, allergy medicine, pain relievers, fever reducers, etc… in one location. Remember to keep this locked up and/or out of reach of children!
Instant Cold Packs are a welcome addition to any first aid kit. With three boys there is abundance of bumps and bruises, so having an ice pack at the ready is awesome. Make sure you don’t accidentally break the agent inside or you will have a warm pack when you need a cold one.
Here is the “tool kit”. Nail clippers, scissors, tweasers, splinter removers, scalpel, and a few other odds and ends. We chose a Pelican Case to keep any moisture off the tools.
The Extractor Bite & Sting Kit is another item we, thankfully, have not had to use. If you regularly venture into areas where there are spiders, snakes, or other potentially venomous animals this kit could mean the difference between a trip to the hospital or a trip to the morgue. Keep this in your hiking pack!
The AAA pouch contains all of our liquids. We keep some sunscreen, hand sanitizer, antibiotic ointment, burn gel, and anti-itch cream in the pack.
The large kit has enough items to fit a family of five, and then some. When putting together a kit make sure it fits your group! There are some great kits that come with a bag and everything you need, or you can build one like we did. Whichever route you choose, make sure you have the right gear for the job. Have small kids? Stock up on knee bandages like the Curad Performance Series Knee and Elbow Extreme Hold Antibacterial Fabric Bandages (they are awesome!). Like to rock climb? Maybe have a splint and some strong bandages/Tape. Make sure to build a kit that fits your needs.
Pro Tip: If you take prescription medication make sure to stock up on some extras and keep them in your kit. Make sure you rotate them out so they don’t go bad.
The Hiking Kit
It would be great to be able to take our large kit with us everywhere but it is not very practical, not to mention kinda heavy! We wanted to have a kit that we could carry with us on hikes. Instead of building a kit to hike with we ended up purchasing the Northbound Train First Aid Kit. These guys make a great little kit that clips on to the MOLLE straps on my backpack. The kit has all the bandages and other first aid items you may need. Everything is wrapped and sanitary. You can add to if you need but it is already a great kit!
So there it is, our first aid kits. If you have any questions or need help putting together a kit just hit us up! Be safe out there!