Wilderness First Aid Packing List
When you pack for a Wilderness First Aid course, you are essentially packing for three different environments:
Lecture-based portions which are generally held indoors in seats in front of dry erase boards
Indoor practical sessions where you’ll be rolling around on variously-dirtied floors, pretending to be hurt and practicing your rescue skills .
Outdoor talks and scenarios where you’ll be kneeling and rolling around on wet, muddy, rocky ground in all but extreme weather conditions. Expect some amount of sitting and standing outdoors, and possibly throwing around a rubber chicken.
How to Dress for Class: Wear comfortable, non-cotton layers that you don’t mind getting stretched or dirty (a base “wicking” layer, an insulating mid-layer, and a warmer outer layer). Have more layers than normal so you have extra items to warm up your patients. Any footwear is fine for indoors. You’ll need sturdy, warm, close-toed shoes or boots for outdoor sessions, as we’ll be kneeling and lifting patients on varied terrain.
What to Pack and Have With You Each Day
Please bring these items even in warm weather, as you will be using them to treat patients as well as for yourself. These items are meant to supplement the clothing you will be wearing!
- Wristwatch for checking vital signs (your hands will be busy and unavailable to hold your phone)
- Pen and Paper for taking notes
- Warm socks and hat
- Mittens or gloves
- Long underwear top and bottom
- Waterproof top and bottom
- Bag Lunch, Snacks, and Water
- Sleeping Pad
- Sleeping Bag or non-cotton blanket
- Tarp or plastic sheet (minimum 6′ x 6′)
- 6-10 (30″ or so long) Ties (cravats, p-cord, shoelaces, webbing, etc.)
- Headlamp with extra batteries (WFRs)
- Day Pack large enough to fit all of the above (you’ll be carrying your pack with you everywhere, and using it during scenarios).
- Any footwear is fine for indoors
- Sturdy, warm, close-toed shoes or boots for outdoor sessions. We’ll be kneeling and lifting patients on varied terrain.
Trust us, we don’t care what your socks / fingernails / hairy legs look like! But just as a heads up, you might like to know that we will be checking each others’ extremities (hands, feet, arms, legs) regularly as part of performing patient physical exams.
Additional Useful but Optional Items: Personal first aid kit, sunglasses, sunscreen, camera, bug repellent, ball cap or visor, and any gear you tend to have with you outdoors, such as a Crazy Creek chair®, so you can practice using it in scenarios for splinting, etc. If you’re spending nights away from home, you might want slippers and/or shower shoes.
Note: We don’t want you to have to run out and buy a bunch of stuff (although if you like the outdoors these are things you’ll eventually need for your adventures). You might try asking friends and neighbors if they can loan you things you don’t currently own. If you are still missing anything, we encourage you to check out secondhand stores such as Salvation Army or Goodwill. There are no fashion points, we only care that you stay warm and dry.