Holiday Gift Guide 2011: SOL Survival Medic Survival and First Aid Kit

Pocket-sized waterproof survival and first aid kit

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Give your adventurous friends a compact, lightweight kit with the basic essentials to survive potentially dangerous surprises in the wild. Weighing just 4 ounces, this kit holds the key to building shelter (a 56 by 80-inch emergency blanket), signaling for help (rescue whistle), and starting a fire (magnesium fire starter and tinder). The magnesium fire starter is one of my favorites. It’s the lightest I’ve tried (one-third of an ounce), works when wet and can be used with one hand.

Survival Medic also contains a button compass, 2 feet of tightly rolled duct tape and a small assortment of first-aid items. Treat blisters, cuts and scrapes with the included bandages, wipes, antibiotic ointment, ibuprofen and safety pin. All of this squeezes into a 4- by 6- by 1-inch waterproof bag that’s small enough to fit in your pocket. Once unsheathed, the emergency blanket will be snug to fit back in, but it is doable.

An included list of more than 50 life-saving tips gives helpful advice on making a snow trench, lean-to, and fallen tree shelter. And, because heat loss in cold conditions pose one of the greatest risks to life, the list details fire-building techniques many wilderness travelers could learn from. With very little weight penalty—or pain to your wallet—this kit is a great gift for any adventurer.

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