Quick Fix

Quick Fix

Photo:slopjop

While a first aid kit is never a bad idea, honestly there’s many situations where you really just need something to hold you together because, like Jesse “The Government Body” Ventura, you ain’t got time to bleed. For this, I’ve picked up two basic components during my climbing career that should keep you in one piece while you’ve got better things to do, like limp to the car.

Climbing Tape

Used as a second skin by climbers everywhere, or more often as a replacement for their own skin, climbing tape is much like your standard medical tape only designed to be as durable yet breathable as possible. In a sport where the friction of your skin alone can keep you alive, climbing tape is used as anything from wrapping a raw knuckle to creating a “tape glove”, used for jamming your hands into cracks in the rock all day and not leaving behind biological graffiti without sliding around and sacrificing grip.

On its own, a roll of climbing tape can be formed into a bandage for any spot on your body with a little imagination, and the flexible fiber weave and seemingly magical stickiness of the tape will keep it in place almost indefinitely, even when wet. If you’ve got a bleeder, a little extra cloth, kleenex, or anything absorbent under the tape will hold back the blood flow. It is however even more important than with sterile bandages to change this absorbent bit to keep the wound from going septic.

While not a household item, climbing tape can generally be found at your nearby camping and outdoor gear store for $4-5, and a roll will last for ages of being battered around in your bag.

Super Glue

Often referred to as “liquid stitches” in the field, super glue will literally do in a pinch for those particularly nasty gashes. By pinching the wound together and applying a healthy coating of superglue over the spot where your skin used to be in one piece, the glue coating will both staunch the blood flow from the injury as well as keep it closed to prevent dirt from getting in and stop that nice big future scar from being any bigger.

I really shouldn’t have to tell you where to get super glue, but your friendly neighborhood grocery store should have some for about $3.

 
That’s it. Two basic, inexpensive ingredients to let you walk it off without leaving a mess everywhere. Your parents would be proud.
 

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