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Survival Tips for the South Carolina Wilderness

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      South Carolina hosts salt water marshes, freshwater beaches, hardwood forests and mountains. The area is a good place to hike and explore, but those unprepared for the terrain and wildlife can be at risk. If you end up in a threatening situation, proper planning and information about the South Carolina wilderness will help you survive the terrain and climate long enough to find help or get out before being seriously injured.

    Plan Ahead

    • Plan ahead before leaving for a hike or a visit to the woods in South Carolina. Swamps, rivers and forests in the South Carolina wilderness call for survival equipment. Check the average day and night temperature for the time of year and consider the type of terrain. Good-fitting supportive shoes or hiking boots will help you walk long distances comfortably. Bring warm clothes in case you need to stay overnight.


    • Pack the proper equipment for wilderness survival, including a first aid kit, water purification tablets, matches or lighter, knife, signalling mirror, bottled water and candles. Store them in a water-tight bag to avoid moisture damage. A small backpack can hold these items In any event, you will be set to start a fire for warmth, purify water for drinking, medicate wounds, and use the signal mirror as a method of calling help.

    Poisonous/Dangerous Wildlife

    • South Carolina has a large number of swamps and marsh lands and is home to various venomous and dangerous wildlife. The cottonmouth snake, a semi-aquatic reptile, is olive brown or black in color. Cottonmouths are highly aggressive and should be avoided. Bites should be treated with crotalid antivenom, which is dispensed at emergency clinics, according to Robert Pierce, extension fish and wildlife specialist from the University of Missouri. They cannot be treated successfully without this medicine. Also avoid alligators, which inhabit the Cape Roman beaches on the coast of South Carolina. They are also found in ponds, marshes, rivers and swamp areas, according to Critter Control. Alligators are highly aggressive and it is best to slowly move to a safe distance while maintaining visual contact. Steering clear of wetland areas is the best way to avoid alligators.

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