- Associated Press - Friday, January 29, 2016

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - New Mexico’s Search and Rescue team has shared some wilderness survival tips as a volunteer search continues for a treasure hunter who vanished more than three weeks ago along the rugged banks of the upper Rio Grande in New Mexico. Preparation is key, and that includes telling others where you are planning to go and when you’ll return, said the team’s coordinator, Richard Goldstein.

Here are his 10 other essentials:



A map, compass or GPS device is a must: It’s never a good idea to hit the trail without knowing where you’re going.



Even in winter, sunglasses, sunscreen and lip balm are needed, and a hat with a brim helps.



Weather can change in a heartbeat. A wool hat, gloves, socks and a poncho can protect against the elements. Staying dry is key and avoiding cotton clothes is a must to prevent hypothermia.



A small flashlight can be used to signal for help. Fire-starting materials such as waterproof matches also can be helpful.



Injuries happen, so pack a kit to bandage a wound. People on prescription medication should take an extra dose, should plans go awry.



A folding knife or other multi-tool can help make kindling for a fire or build shelter.



Water is life. Staying hydrated is important, and bringing extra water or even packets of Kool-Aid or other electrolytes is smart.



Extra food, such as protein bars, can help restore energy levels after outdoor exertion.



A space blanket with a reflective liner can retain warmth during the night; a large poncho can be strung up for shelter.



Smart phones won’t help in remote areas, and should be turned off to avoid draining the battery. A signal mirror and whistle also can draw help.




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