There are many reasons why you might go on an adventure on your own. Maybe you’ve always wanted to, maybe your go-to travel partner can’t make it or something else happened. Sometimes you find yourself with a decision to make: Do I go on my own or should I just stay at home?
My advice is: Always go on your own, but prepare properly. Good preparation is the key to a successful trip!
Obviously you have to take the usual equipment for whatever activity you are planning. Double-check your gear before leaving, there will be nobody to help you out! Saying that, be sensible enough to only do activities that are safe when doing it alone. Take special care in compiling your first aid package and make sure you have the necessary tools to deal with injuries before you call for help. Always bring a fully charged phone. Put that phone in energy saving mode, so the battery loss is a small as possible. Although phone reception is usually awful somewhere in the wild, emergency calls will work. Ideally you will have a GPS device with you to give your position as accurately as possible in case you need help.
Plan your route and inform a person close to you of that plan. Mark paths that you will hike and lodges you will stay at. Inform them of dates going. When I went of for my solo adventure in the Dolomites, James knew exactly where I was going. We agreed that I would let him know when I had reached my destination for the day. We also agreed that if he hadn’t heard anything, he would call the rifugio in the evening to check whether I had arrived. After all, a missing text message may just be caused be a bad reception.
If the person knowing about your trip is not familiar with these things, it is important to point out to them that there will only be very limited communication and it is nothing to worry about. Only if there has been no communication and you failed to arrive at your destination, the person you informed has to call emergency services. Ideally you have compiled a list for them with the relevant numbers (including country codes if you go abroad). But don’t worry now, these are all just precautionary measures and most likely nothing will happen to you. Nevertheless: Better safe than sorry!
And last, but not least: Don’t forget to have fun! Embrace the opportunity to enjoy nature. Listen to the powerful silence far away from a city. Get lost in your daydreams. You can be proud of yourself for being courageous enough to head into the wilderness on your own!