Traveling Solo

Alex Bradberry Camping International Travel

The world will open up again some day (hopefully soon), and traveling alone as a woman can be a harrowing experience. Some women choose to avoid it altogether as a result. At Women’s Fly Fishing this is a primary focal point of our business; to empower women with the skills and knowledge they need to not only enjoy our fun-filled women-only fly fishing group trips, but also to continue on their own and fish wherever their hearts desire!

 The author with a Jack Crevalle on a solo mission to Costa Rica

 

While solo travel should definitely include a fair amount of research into your destination’s specific requirements, there are also some general (and women-specific) principles that can help you get started. We’ll break it down below by type of destination.

Remote; camping vs lodges

  • When traveling takes you from airport to float plane to boat ride, you know you’re in for a bit more adventure than the typical uber-to-the-hotel itinerary has to offer. 
  • If you’re staying in a lodge, be sure to contact them about the best means of arrival, what their menu will look like, and an itinerary of your stay, especially if you’ve purchased a guide package.
  • If you plan on camping, ensure you have all essential gear. Tents come in many shapes and forms nowadays, from single person backpacking tents to vehicle rooftop tents for those with 4-wheel drive and big tires. Other essentials include:
    • A GPS locator device that allows you to stay in reach of emergency services and aware of your global location. Our favorite is the Garmin inReach Mini
    • A properly rated sleeping bag for the temperature range you’ll be exposed to
    • Your fly fishing gear! Rod, reel, leaders and tippet, flies, and more flies, all serve to enhance your outdoors experience and are a great way to source your own meals - always be aware of state and federal regulations when fishing public waters
    • A good knife (or two); it’s always helpful to carry an all-purpose pocket knife, but if you’re camping in the summer while fishing for salmon, a filet knife is a great idea to pack as well
    • A stove for cooking and/or heating and boiling water. Don’t have space in your pack for a stove? Make sure you have tinder and flint for building a fire (and are in an area with proper fuel to keep it going)
    • An emergency first-aid kit that has a space blanket and heat source (even hand warmers can help immensely in a pinch)
    • Water filtration system
    • Extras of certain items are always nice to have; things like gloves, hats, skin protection with SPF, and layers of technical fabrics or wool. Cotton traps moisture against your skin and will not keep you warm. A compact rain jacket is also great to have in case of unexpected downpours. In some areas where wind and sun can be really brutal, packing a container of Aquaphor or other skin barrier cream can be a lifesaver.
  • We also find it helpful to carry a pocket sized field guide on local vegetation; this can be for foraging purposes as a side dish for your fresh caught salmon, or to identify potential poisonous or harmful vegetation as well. 
  • A shovel or trowel for bathroom breaks. Never leave toilet paper behind! It is not compostable and only litters our pristine outdoor spaces; carry a ziplock bag for soiled items until you can dispose of them properly. Certain feminine products also make time in the outdoors more comfortable; the pStyle personal urination device makes bathroom breaks easier, and menstrual cups make for less breaks and less waste
  • Make your luggage count! Rather than using a traditional roller bag or duffel for your carry-on in flight, use technical packs like FisheWear’s dry bag backpack or wedge tote; items as at home in the terminal as they are on the skiff
  • For more information on essential gear for camping, click below!

 https://www.nps.gov/subjects/camping/staying-safe.htm


Consider checking out https://www.recreation.gov/ for planning your trip and ensuring you have the necessary skills, permits, and gear!

 


International travel

  • Check the US State Department website for any current travel advisories 

Current Travel Advisories

  • Consider purchasing a travel guide (such as Fodor’s) to familiarize yourself with the local culture and learn about recommended lodging and restaurant options
  • Remember technological differences:
    • Adapters for countries with different outlets than the standard US voltage system
    • Check your cell provider’s network plan and add an international package or purchase a temporary cell phone for the trip
    • Look into Wi-Fi hot spots to purchase if you plan on continuing to keep in touch in more remote areas
  • In certain remote destinations like Christmas Island, even food can be a limited resource. Consider packing emergency rations (things like your favorite on-the-water snacks, granola or protein bars, dehydrated fruit, easy to heat or dehydrated meals, and powdered water additives with electrolytes like nuun are great to have on hand)...or you could end up only eating a steady diet of only bologna sandwiches for a whole week.
  • Pack a water filter and reusable water bottle! This not only eliminates the need for single use plastic, but also ensures you’ll have water in areas where prices may be higher for bottled water as it’s a luxury good in some economies. We like the Sawyer Mini Filter for its easy packability, but the Grayl geopress system is also wonderful for filtering slightly larger amounts of water.
  • This is not meant to serve as a comprehensive list of preparations for international travel and is meant to cover basics only. Please refer to the state department’s travel checklist for further information and always exercise your best judgment while away from home. 

Check out the State Department's Traveler's Checklist here!



Regardless of whether you’re traveling close to home, across the country, or across the globe, we hope you’re empowered to tackle your next adventure!



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