“A trip to the desert is unlike a trip to any other place. The beauty you witness on seeing the vast expanse of nothing but mounds of sand glittering in the sunlight, as the breeze blows it in your face is unparalleled. The extremities of weather that can get unbearably hot during the day and surprisingly cold during the night are one of the many perks of an adventure in the sand dunes. From admiring the camels that trace the sand to walking on what seems like a path that never ends, an adventure in the sand dunes is truly an experience to look forward to. For people who call themselves the real adventurers, their list of to-do is incomplete if they have not gone on a trip to the desert and engaged in some amazing adventure sports that one can pursue in that landscape. If you are contemplating on whether you should go on a trip to the sand dunes or to somewhere else, we would suggest that you choose the former. The only reason we would ask you to do that is that shedding your inhibitions and being in a place that is nothing like home; that makes you feel like you are miles away from your comfort zone and yet you end up enjoying is what a real adventure is all about. You can go on a trip that is all chalked in an out by a tour organizing company, or you could tinker an escapade that is one hundred percent, authentically yours. Either way, if you plan to go, we are sure you will end up having a great time. However, before you get a little too excited we would like you to focus on a primarily important aspect of any outdoor trip, and that is preparation. Without the right kind of preparation and knowledge, even a simple trip to the nearby beach can end up being a disaster. When we say preparation, it does not mean booking tickets and making reservations at the hotel. We mean having each of that item with you that will mark the difference between an ordinary and an extraordinary trip. We mean paying attention to details that even an avid adventurer can easily overlook when packing for a beautiful vacation no matter how experienced he or she is out of excitement.
To make sure that if a trip of a lifetime in the sand dunes is what you are planning for, then that comes true in all its shape and form, here we are to help you prepare in every possible way.
Choose your destination first
Just making plans about going to a desert and then deciding which one is not the kind of game you play when planning for a desert adventure. Although all the deserts are essentially same, selecting a name before you begin to pack helps you understand how many landmarks you should cover. This will help you understand the number of days you need to spend there and this, in turn, will help you pack accordingly. Be it the Marrakech in the Sahara Desert, the desert adventures in Dubai desert or the Thar desert of India, every desert comes with its perks and experiences that are as unique as the places in which they are located.
Chalk out your itinerary
Once your destination is all set and done after conducting the basic research, you have to go ahead and do some in-depth research on the place to know what are the landmarks you must not miss out. For example, if you are going to the Marrakech, you are in for a spicy treat. Known for its seductive spices this Moroccan desert will charm you with its kasbahs, coast and a horde of adventure activities that you can do here including rock climbing. The desert safari of the Dubai desert is another thing that must be on the top of your to-do list if that is where you are planning to go. Also, study the climate of the place in the season in which you are going. Check for rest houses, hospitals, and eateries in the nearby areas and also how far they will be from your checkpoints at the night time. Get maps of the chosen place and spend some time trying to study and understand it, so you don’t have to depend on anyone but yourself for the right direction. If you are going on the trip without a guide, then these are some aspects that you cannot overlook to ensure the sound health of your voyage.
Food and water supplies: Food and water are two important aspects of your preparation for an adventure in the sand dunes. A self-planned and executed adventure requires you to focus on gathering the right amount of food and water supplies even more.
Talking about food first, you may think that setting up the campfire is a great option. We wouldn’t deny it considering how cold it gets at night; the fire will serve a two-fold purpose. But this is a feasible plan only when you are traveling in your vehicle or when you are going for a short duration. Campfire needs supplies, from firewood and fuel to big utensils and washing supplies, from raw food items to creating a space where you can safely store them unless they are ready to be cooked for a day’s dinner. You cannot practically take your entire kitchen with you when traveling to another continent or for more than a week. Another drawback of campfires is that you can only set them up once in a day, so you have to either eat leftovers for breakfast and lunch or packaged food. If you are going on a long trip, you can take stuff for a campfire, but when it comes to food, you should choose something more reliable, healthy and convenient. MRE or Meals, Ready to Eat are reliable, much more healthy and convenient food option when it comes to choosing a food source for outdoor trips.
- MREs are packed in a hermetically sealed environment which makes sure that the quality of food inside remains unaffected by the external environment. This feature makes them perfect for an adventure in the sand dunes given the climatic conditions change drastically on a daily basis.
- MREs are impact resistant and ruggedized for rough usage. You don’t have to carry them with the care with which you have to carry other packaged and canned food items.
- MRE day food packs contain 1300 calories that are sufficient for one person for a day. The food inside the packets is brimming with nutrients. A full day MRE meal keeps you healthy and energetic.
- MREs come with a self-activated heating feature. If one night you decide not to set up the campfire because you are too tired, that’s okay because you can still eat hot food. All thanks to this wonderful feature.
- Another added benefit of choosing MRE food packs over canned food items is that they are lightweight. If you are backpacking then, you wouldn’t want to carry unnecessary weight on your shoulders.
- Full day MRE meal packs come with the all three meals for the day which include desserts, beverages, and snacks. You don’t have to carry separate supplies for breakfast, lunch and dinner for all the days you will be in the desert.
- MREs have a long shelf life. You can buy packs that will last from 3 days up to 5 years. So, no matter how many days later you consume them after buying, the food will never go stale unlike canned and packaged food that requires specific storage conditions without which they go stale.
- Most MRE packs also come with water supplies. Water is going to be the primary need of your body when in the sand dunes. The hot and dry wind will make you feel dehydrated too quickly, and you will need to replenish the water content of your body by drinking water regularly.
You can also buy MRE water packs separately.
Gather all your supplies
Gathering supplies include clothing and other stuff that you will be taking with yourself on the trip. As for the clothing, you need to have a good mix of both types of clothes, comfortable t-shirts for the day and pullovers and fleece jackets for the night.
- Don’t forget to pack a cozy sleeping bag for the cold nights.
- Sometimes, it may get too cold to be able to sleep comfortably. Carry some firewood and fuel to light the campfire.
- Carry a wide brimmed hat and a bandana to protect yourself from the sun during the day.
- A good quality sunscreen lotion with a high SPF will be your best friend during the trip. Make sure you apply it before you begin your day.
- Whenever you feel a little too dehydrated, have some extra water that you can splash on your face.
- For the lowers, you could take joggers or cargo pants. Wearing shorts is not advisable for you may end up getting rashes or blisters because of the rough camel skin sliding against your skin.
- For the footwear, carry hiking boots, gaiters, hiking socks and trekking sandals. Sandals will come in handy when you want your feet to breathe a little after they have been packed inside shoes for the whole day.
- Carry walking poles. Sand dunes can present some tough challenge when it comes to hiking them. The slippery texture of the sand does nothing to help you. Instead, it takes you a step backward for every two steps you take. Walking poles cab be quite useful for such situations.
- Sunglasses are the way to go when in the desert. Make sure they are tinted.
- A magnetic compass, a GPS, and a map will come in handy when you need to find your way back onto the right path. This is when all your research and studying the map will bear its sweet fruits.
- Have a whistle that blows aloud. This whistle will be your call for help in case of an emergency.
- A Swiss army knife because when nothing helps, a knife surely does.
- In your first aid kit, apart from all the medicines have anti-diarrhoea drugs and rehydration sachets.
- Don’t think that the desert comes without its necessary supply of insects. There are plenty of bugs to annoy you and bite youl. Have an insect repellent to keep them away.
An adventure in the sand dunes can turn out to be an actual adventure when you have prepared yourself thoroughly for every possible situation. Don’t forget to go through every aspect of the trip at least once before you finally set out.
Have a good one!”