Map, Compass & GPS

Map, Compass & GPS
Wild flowers along Fall Creek on the way to the Green Lakes - Oregon

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Duct Tape For Emergency Repairs

Duct Tape is an important component of every pack and part of my ten essential systems.

As a Search and Rescue (SAR) team member I am required to carry a small amount ofduct tape in my SAR pack.  Duct tape is a remarkable tool for the hiker and is an important addition to the repair kit.  Duct tape can temporarily repair a torn pack bag and bind a damaged  hiking boot.
The list of what it can do is lengthy.

That said, I wasn't sure which brand to choose.

I checked one of my favorite equipment references, John McCann's book Build the Perfect Survival Kit.   McCann provides many reviews of equipment that the SAR member and hiker might use. One of the many "take away"' is the discussion and review of duct tape.

For example, I learned that the product "Duck" tape (commonly sold at
WalMart) is fine for work at home: a benign environment. It comes in many colors and patterns. Duck tape is fine for crafts and for projects where strength is not an issue.

Better are the duct tape products by Scotch and 3M. The holding power seems superior. For several years now I have kept roughly ten feet of this tape as a part of my in the field repair kit.

Newer is "Gorilla" tape. It is as strong as the silver 3M product, maybe better.

After a quick Internet search I found an interesting article in Popular Mechanics . Visit their site at for their review.  In Popular Mechanics evaluation Gorilla tape is reported to be the best of the bunch.

Of course I don't carry a roll of tape in my pack.  I carry tape that I have cut into short lengths and then rolled end over end, keeping the tape flat.  The tape is kept to a small rectangular section.

Another option is to wrap the tape around the base of a plastic water bottle.

Duct tape is a remarkable tool for the hiker and is an import addition to the repair kit. 

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