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Old Yesterday, 05:42 AM
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We always plan for worse case, so I'll second the sentiments about keeping your vehicle maintained and no less than a half tank of gas at all times.

Have you mapped alternate routes? If your primary is inaccessible, it's best to have alternate plans already mapped and reconnoitered.

Mountain bike. Even a cheap one left at work or in the back of a vehicle is the most efficient, and cost-effective option to travel moderate distances that on-foot can compete with.

I do a lot of backpacking and 54 miles would likely take me 3-4 days depending on the terrain and weather. Most don't consider the effects of traveling on foot in the woods (off trail) in the dark or low illumination and possibly with a steady rain...it will make you slow down significantly.

A cache isn't a bad idea. For 50 miles, I would only plan one and it doesn't even have to be extravagant. Find a spot you can find or mark about half way. Simple 5 gallon buck with a few freeze dried meals, Sawyer water filter, water container and maybe a small cooking pot and spoon. You could add a small FAK and knife, but in reality, your resupply really only requires food and water to keep you going...this is all assuming you keep your get home bag close at hand at all times. About $50-75 and 30 minutes with a shovel is all that is needed and if stolen or lost isn't a significant loss and it can be easily replaced during annual or semi-annual inspections.

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Old Yesterday, 10:54 AM
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Another thing that's really tricky about walking versus driving--

You get so used to being in a car, you can misjudge the distance on foot, if you're just going by what it feels like, and don't actually measure the mileage ever.

A lot of trips in a car that you're used to thinking of as a hop, skip, and a jump are a little bit epic on foot.

I'm sure a lot of our people are too smart to fall for that, but probably it will get a lot of the unprepared.

Was just looking through my own bags. From time to time, I question a lot of my items.

Out of everything you could question, food is one that's a good idea unless you really always stay within pretty close distances of your home. It could be that illusion I described above is making you think of not including it. But probably most people should at least have something like a few granola bars and a little water in there.

If there's any chance the get-home situation could take a day or more, it could help you out a lot.

I bet toilet paper is another one that the car-vs-walking illusion could trick some people out of including.
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Old Yesterday, 03:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Jim from 28DaysLater View Post

Out of everything you could question, food is one that's a good idea unless you really always stay within pretty close distances of your home. It could be that illusion I described above is making you think of not including it. But probably most people should at least have something like a few granola bars and a little water in there.
It's taken me probably a hundred miles to gauge time and distance when on foot. A map and compass are essential, but you're right that straight line distance never works out as straight line when on foot.

Water is more critical than food, but food is still another essential. Sure, you won't starve, but if you're trekking on foot with an empty and growling stomach, the mental challenge increases to the point you're going to make a mistake. It may be missing a turn or change of direction, loss of situational awareness, increased chances of a mechanical injury, and if it's cold weather, you need the calories for your metabolism.

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