Many basic survival kits have their primary focus on surviving the daytime, but can have some holes in their nighttime survival aspects. Surviving in the night depends on a lot of factors, including climate, time of year, and the type of terrain in which you are trekking, but there are some things that are common to surviving your situation, regardless of where you are. To successfully make it through the nighttime you will need three things: shelter, warmth, and security. Making sure your your survival kit can accommodate those three things is crucial to having a worry-free adventure in the great outdoors, wherever you go. Pretty much every survival kit includes plenty of tools to help you provide shelter and warmth for yourself, but can often overlook the aspect of security. When putting together your survival kit, you should make sure that it answers this essential question: will this provide me everything I need to survive the night?
It goes without saying that we are most vulnerable during the night. If you want to get a good night’s rest, you have to be able to feel safe and secure where you’re sleeping. Peace of mind during the night can be worth more than a hundred pounds of food. Wherever you are, make sure that your sleeping area is away from a water source and that your food is stored far enough away that it won’t draw attention to you if discovered by a predator. If you’re hunkered down in your bed and you hear something rustling in the leaves nearby in the middle of the night, a tiny flashlight isn’t going to cut it. Having a small night vision monocular or light pair of goggles at your side can allow you to safely and quickly scope out your surroundings from the comfort of your shelter. Night vision equipment allows you to see more than a flashlight beam would allow without diminishing your own eyesight.
Not many survival kits contain a means to see clearly at night outside of a basic flashlight, but night vision can be a critical component to successful wilderness survival. Night vision equipment has many uses. It can be used to scope out desirable terrain for setting up shelter or gathering food during the dark hours. If you can see long distances at night, you can possibly spot a water source, or safely travel to one that you already know about. Even gathering wood can be made safer and more effective if you can see exactly where you’re putting your hands in the dark.
Your average night vision monoculars weigh about ten ounces, including batteries (usually AAA or smaller), so adding them to your kit won’t break the bank on weight. Most are available for under $200 and will last for years. They have about 30 to 50 hours of runtime with a fresh set of batteries and are made for just about every outdoor activity. Most night vision monoculars are water and impact resistant, so you can really count on them to be ready when you need them most.
There is never an ideal time for being lost or stranded in the wild. Getting thrust into a survival situation doesn’t always happen during the day. We imagine that we will have plenty of daylight in order to set up shelter for the night, but Murphy’s law dictates that that won’t always be the case. Having some basic night vision equipment on your side can be a crucial component to successful survival in the 21st century wilderness.
Craig Pearson is an avid hunter, outdoorsman, and adventurist. His main passions are hog hunting in Texas and writing about his many adventures. He currently blogs for nightvision4less.com, a supplier of high quality night vision equipment.