Keep Valuables at Home While Hiking or Camping
I went out on a spontaneous day hike not too long ago, and it was a welcome break from a busy week until I lost my wallet. I still don't know exactly how it happened, but the end result was that I needed to spend days canceling debit cards, changing passwords and replacing my identification. One of the biggest problems I had was that my Social Security card was in my wallet at the time.
I'll spare you the details about the rabbit holes and bureaucratic hoops that I had to go through in order to get everything straightened out. However, this incident taught me a lesson that's worth passing on, and that is to keep as many of your valuables at home before heading out to enjoy some quality time with nature. In fact, the more I talk to people about what happened, the more I learn that I'm not the only one who has encountered problems.
Some people told me stories about losing jewelry, phones and money. Others said that they got scratched as their earrings or necklaces became snagged on branches. One person fell down a shallow ravine as he lost his footing while trying to reach a ring that slipped off his finger and landed on the embankment. Someone else related how they were robbed when they weren't looking, and one of my friends even had his phone snatched by a monkey while he was on a trail in Asia.
These are just a few examples of how easy it is to lose valuables, but it's something that most people don't think about ahead of time. I mean, who thinks that they will lose their wallet or become injured because of a piece of jewelry?
An Ounce of Prevention
Remove any jewelry you don't want to lose before heading out. Look through your wallet and remove any extra debit cards, identification or other items that will be a pain to replace. Think twice about bringing expensive devices with you if there's a risk that they can become lost, stolen or damaged.
Spending time in nature is full of unexpected surprises, and no one plans on losing valuables while they are enjoying their trip. It only takes a couple of minutes to prevent this from happening to you, so remember to do a quick double-check and leave important items at home or in your vehicle before heading out.