What to Put in a Signal Kit

Signal kits are essential for anyone going on a mission but they are also extremely useful to have on hand for everyday life.  From car crashes to being lost in the woods, signal kits can be a life saver.  If you want to set up a signal kit here are a few items that are great additions.  Our recommendation for a solid signaling kit is redundancy.  One form of signaling can often go unseen which is why you should have multiple backups.

  1. GPS Unit- One huge part of signaling is being able to identify where you are physically.  We recommend either using the Garmin Foretrex 701 or the Garmin Fenix 5. Both of these offer a quick reference to where you are which is crucial for relaying to help.  This is a vital addition to any signal kit.

  2. VS-17 Panel/High Vis Panel- High Vis panels can be high tech like our in house brand or simply a high vis piece of cloth.  The bottom line is these are essential to any signaling kit as they help you be seen from the air or ground.  This is especially important if you are out in the woods and find yourself lost.  It may not seem important but aircraft will be able to see them from higher altitudes when doing search patterns.
  3. Smoke Grenade- The next time the 4th of July comes around stalk up on some smoke grenades.  These can be small ones but they are great for signaling kits and can be seen from really far away.  It’s always better to choose a color like red, purple or yellow that can easily be seen from the air.
  4. Strobe Light- Strobe lights are essential for being seen at night.  We recommend using a VIP safety light because they have different colors, SOS patterns and a high output.  They also come with a good clip that can be attached to your belt or kit so you can turn on your light while moving.
  5. Chemlight– Chemlights are great because they are inexpensive, last 6-8 hours and can be seen from far away at night.  They also don’t take up much room.  If you want to make the chemlight more effective you can tie it to the end of a 3-4′ rope and swing it in a circular pattern.  This creates a very large, bright circle.
  6. Signal Mirror- Signal mirrors are probably the least expensive addition to a good signal kit and are extremely useful.  A good signal mirror can signal an aircraft thousands of feet up.
  7.  Air to Ground Radio- This may seem like overkill but a good air-ground radio is an excellent addition to a signaling kit if you have the room.  Basically these are used to talk to any overhead aircraft.  While you may not know the frequency used by aircraft in your area you can always put the radio on scan until it picks up a signal.
  8. Lighter- Last but not least is a good lighter.  Honestly, if you can bring one thing, bring this.  A light can start a fire which can been seen for miles.  If you plan to get a lighter you should always consider getting one that is extremely windproof and ensure it has plenty of fuel.

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