Tip #10 Finding Your Way In The Dark
I'll bet just about every outdoors person has found themselves wandering around in the dark trying to find their way to a specific location, perhaps a treestand, a favorite fishing hole back in the woods or even your way back to camp. I've been using this little trick for many years in a variety of situations and it has saved me a lot of time, not to mention frustration.
As everyone knows, the outdoors looks mighty different when viewed by the illumination of a flashlight or spotlight. Colors tend to become very drab, there is little depth of field in what is lit up and distinguishing landmarks can blend in with the surroundings without standing out. The solution is quite simple and very inexpensive.
Sticky-back Reflective Tape is sold in a variety of stores and is most commonly used to add visibility to objects at night. It can be placed on mailboxes, driveway marker posts, boat trailers or vehicle bumpers to provide an additional safety factor for drivers on the road.
I cut this tape in small pieces, 3/4" x 1" and leave the backing on. I'll put about two dozen of these tiny reflectors in an empty 35mm film canister along with a couple dozen thumb tacks and carry this little kit in my pocket or backpack. Whenever I want to mark my trail for following in the dark later, I'll tack a reflector to a tree or a stick stuck in the ground.
These reflectors will show up at 100 yards with the light from a small pocket flashlight and can be spotted 200 yards or more when using more powerful flashlights or say a spotlight on a boat or ATV. During the daytime, they are unobtrusive and nearly invisible.
Here are a few applications I use them for:
There are probably many other applications you can think of using this technique for finding your way in the dark. This kit is so useful, I rarely leave home without it.
All Content Copyright ©1996-99
Visual Media Design & Alaska Outdoor Journal
All Rights Reserved