Would You Survive Backpacking?

27 Questions | Total Attempts: 287

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Backpacking Quizzes & Trivia

Backpacking is the outdoor recreation of carrying gear on one's back while hiking for more than a day. It is often but not always an extended journey, and may or may not involve camping outdoors. Just how capable are you to go on that backpacking trip with the guys? Take the test and find out!


Questions and Answers
  • 1. 
    You have a cell phone and five bars. Which of the following are legitimate reasons to call for rescue? (Choose all that apply)
    • A. 

      You’re lost on day 2 of a 5-day backpack

    • B. 

      You fell 15 feet, got knocked out, then woke up woozy and confused

    • C. 

      Your hiking companion dislocated his shoulder. It’s back in now, and pretty sore, but it works OK

    • D. 

      Just before dark, your 6-year-old brother wandered away from camp. You can’t find him, and rain has started falling

    • E. 

      Your new boyfriend was showing off when he pitched over a cliff with a full pack. He’s conscious, but his lower leg is crooked and he’s squealing in pain

  • 2. 
    It’s day 8 of your thru-hike of southern Utah’s 812-mile Hayduke Trail, your water bottles are empty, and the map doesn’t show any springs on this high plateau. Now what? You have a cell phone and five bars. Which of the following are legitimate reasons to call for rescue? - See more at: http://www.backpacker.com/skills/beginner/winter-camping/quiz-would-you-survive/#sthash.2C1ijC1i.dpufIt’s day 8 of your thru-hike of southern Utah’s 812-mile Hayduke Trail, your water bottles are empty, and the map doesn’t show any springs on this high plateau. Now what?
    • A. 

      Rest in the shade, then retrace your steps to the last available water once the sun goes down

    • B. 

      Find a creekbed and start digging You’ll find the water table soon

    • C. 

      Follow a cattle trail; it will always lead to water

  • 3. 
    You’re ready for the first rappel into a technical slot canyon, but the anchors mentioned in the route description aren’t there. Is this a problem?
    • A. 

      No. Rap on using something else as an anchor, but make sure your cell phone is charged in case anything goes wrong

    • B. 

      Not really. But first, check your bolt kit to be certain you have enough anchors to pound in wherever you might need them, and find a good spot to establish the start of your own route

    • C. 

      Yes. Retrace your route until you find the anchors

  • 4. 
    True or false? Hypothermia can be a risk in temps above 55°F
    • A. 

      True

    • B. 

      False

  • 5. 
    True or false? You can use your analog watch as a compass
    • A. 

      True

    • B. 

      False

  • 6. 
    You’re hiking in the Grand Canyon in 95°F temps, and you’ve been drinking so much water your belly’s sloshing. Still, you feel weak and tired. What will help?
    • A. 

      Eat a salty snack, take electrolyte tablets, and sip an energy drink

    • B. 

      Nibble on some candy to keep your energy up

    • C. 

      Keep drinking—it’s tough to stay hydrated in heat this severe

    • D. 

      Rest in the shade with your feet above your heart

  • 7. 
    You’re scrambling up a steep Colorado Fourteener in June. The moves are fairly easy, but it’s snowier than you expected, and you don’t have an ice axe or crampons. You should:
    • A. 

      Keep going for a few pitches to check out the route, then retreat if it seems too tough

    • B. 

      Go for it. The snow will soften in the sun as the day progresses, making the descent considerably safer

    • C. 

      Glissade back down

    • D. 

      Retreat via the least snowy, least technical route you can find

  • 8. 
    A cottonmouth just sank its fangs into your girlfriend’s ankle. After calming her, you should immediately: A cottonmouth just sank its fangs into your girlfriend’s ankle. After calming her, you should immediately - See more at: http://www.backpacker.com/skills/beginner/winter-camping/quiz-would-you-survive/2/#sthash.vTDD9oDi.dpuf
    • A. 

      Tie a tourniquet just below her knee to keep the poison from reaching the heart

    • B. 

      Make a deep X cut at the site of the bite and start sucking

    • C. 

      Have her do jumping jacks to work the venom out of her system

    • D. 

      Keep her lying down and calm, and send for help

    • E. 

      Attach a suction-cup venom extractor and pump away

  • 9. 
    You’re at the trailhead, and the box for self-registration is empty. You haven’t told anyone where you’re going or how long you’ll be gone. Walk on?
    • A. 

      Sure. John Muir never had anyone tracking him

    • B. 

      Yep, but leave a note on your dashboard with your trip plan and expected return, and pack your cell phone

    • C. 

      Not so fast. Visit or call the nearest ranger station first to report your expected route and return date

    • D. 

      Yes, with caution. As a veteran hiker, you can count on years of backcountry experience. If you don’t get careless, you’ll be fine

  • 10. 
    You just hiked to 11,000 feet. After pitching camp, you developed a pounding headache. What’s the cure for this classic case of altitude sickness?
    • A. 

      Guzzle a liter of water

    • B. 

      Do some light exercise around camp to get your respiration and heart rate up

    • C. 

      Break camp and descend to a lower elevation before sleeping

    • D. 

      Take 200 mg of ibuprofen

    • E. 

      A and B

    • F. 

      A, B, and C

  • 11. 
    Assume spinal injury and immobilize an injured patient whenever he or she:
    • A. 

      Has taken a long tumble

    • B. 

      Feels numbness in extremities

    • C. 

      Feels back or torso pain

    • D. 

      Has been knocked out from a serious blow to the head

    • E. 

      All of the above

  • 12. 
    You suddenly realize you’re lost in deep forest. What’s the way out of this fix?
    • A. 

      Follow the closest creek downstream until it meets a river, because rivers always lead to civilization

    • B. 

      Find shelter, stay warm and dry, and wait for rescue

    • C. 

      Note your location and surrounding landmarks carefully, then retrace your steps to the last point where you knew you were on route

    • D. 

      Call 911 for directions on your cell phone

  • 13. 
    The most common avalanche snow condition is
    • A. 

      Hard-packed snow

    • B. 

      Wet slush

    • C. 

      Old wind crust

    • D. 

      Fresh, wind-drifted snow

  • 14. 
    While crossing a class III pass, you encounter a cliff that requires sketchier rock-climbing moves than you expected. Still, you’ve been doing this stuff for a decade. What now?
    • A. 

      Look for a route that avoids the hazard, or turn back

    • B. 

      Buck up and climb on, Dean. Two minutes, and you’ll be in the clear

    • C. 

      Make a cell call to your spouse and tell her what you’re going to try

    • D. 

      Rig a safety line with tent cord or your bear-bagging rope

  • 15. 
    What’s the most dangerous animal in the wilderness?
    • A. 

      Grizzly bear

    • B. 

      Rattlesnake

    • C. 

      Wasp

    • D. 

      The one in your mirror

    • E. 

      Wasp

    • F. 

      Wild hog in heat

    • G. 

      Another human

  • 16. 
    You’re in the middle of a long desert hike, days from your car. You’re stoveless, your water filter broke hours ago, and you’re gazing down at a nasty cattle pond. It’s decision time. Pick one:
    • A. 

      Drink up and fill all of your bottles

    • B. 

      Chop open a cactus and wring the water from it

    • C. 

      Suck on some hard candy until you find the next water hole, because the fetid water will surely make you sick

    • D. 

      Look for birds, which usually nest near potable water

  • 17. 
    A violent lightning storm is bearing down on your high-meadow campsite. You should immediately
    • A. 

      Grab your trekking poles and stab them into the dirt to ground yourself

    • B. 

      Look for a rock overhang to hide under

    • C. 

      Leave your tent for a low, sheltered spot away from tall trees, and crouch on your sleeping pad

    • D. 

      Have everyone move downhill and separate from one another

  • 18. 
    It’s broiling out, and your friend just collapsed trailside. He’s not sweating, but it’s clear from feeling his forehead that his body temperature is well above normal. What’s the problem?
    • A. 

      Heat exhaustion

    • B. 

      Dehydration

    • C. 

      Heatstroke

    • D. 

      Nothing (he’s faking to buy some break time)

  • 19. 
    Your canoe just swamped in remote Canadian rapids. The water is only chest-deep, but the current is very strong. You need to
    • A. 

      Stand up and signal for help

    • B. 

      Use your paddle to self-arrest

    • C. 

      Swim toward the nearest log stretching across the river

    • D. 

      Roll onto your back, and float feet-first downstream until you reach calmer water

  • 20. 
    Blood is pumping from your thumb after your salami knife slipped. Which of these procedures is not a recommended geyser-stopper?
    • A. 

      Apply a bandage

    • B. 

      Apply direct pressure on the wound

    • C. 

      Apply a tourniquet

    • D. 

      Hold your thumb up in the air high above your heart

  • 21. 
    The most common cause of wilderness fatality is
    • A. 

      Avalanche

    • B. 

      Fall

    • C. 

      Hypothermia

    • D. 

      Wasp or bee sting

  • 22. 
    The best way not to get lost is
    • A. 

      Carry a map and know how to read it

    • B. 

      Carry a compass and know how to use it

    • C. 

      Start with a plan and a good route description

    • D. 

      All of the above

  • 23. 
    True or false? The best practice when fording rivers that are more than calf-deep is to keep your sternumstrap and hipbelt buckled. If you fall in, you’ll need the pack’s buoyancy to keep you at the surface until you can swim to safety
    • A. 

      True

    • B. 

      False

  • 24. 
    What is the single best way to prevent hypothermia?
    • A. 

      Dress in several warm layers

    • B. 

      Eat hearty snacks every 30 minutes

    • C. 

      Pound some hot buttered rum

    • D. 

      Never let yourself get wet, either from snow or sweat

  • 25. 
    While we’re at it, what should you wear to prevent hypothermia?
    • A. 

      Waterproof/breathable rain suit

    • B. 

      Warm gloves

    • C. 

      A warm hat

    • D. 

      A thick parka

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