Wilderness Survival 101: Let’s get dirty
Another aspect of prepper training is developing your wilderness survival skills. Though most of us are unlikely to be caught unawares in the wild by the apocalypse, many of us may be planning on bugging out or preparing for massive shortages of modern goods and services. Part if that preparation must involve learning a few basic survival skills.
The average human can survive roughly 3 minutes without oxygen, 3 hours without being able to regulate temperature (read: hypothermia or heatstroke), 3 days without water, and 3 weeks without food. Being able to meet those needs – in that order – is key to long term survival.
So assuming the post-world has oxygen your first mission is to find our build shelter. The design of your shelter will very depending on the materials available to you in your environment. If you’re in the desert or an arctic environment your best bet is burying yourself. In a more temperate climate you’re looking at debris shelters. Hopefully no matter where you’ll have a decent size tarp as such a tool can be invaluable no matter the weather.
When building your shelter you’ll need to take location into careful consideration. You’ll need to be close enough to resources necessary for the remaining survival factors to be able to access them easily. Things to consider: where’s your nearest water source? Can you build a fire? Will your shelter end up in a puddle if it rains?
Once built, look into building a fire. I’ll go through this in depth next post but for now I recommend keeping a lighter on your person at all times. Not only is a fire an excellent ingredient in keeping warm but it’s necessary for boiling water, cooking food, and has an excellent effect on ones mental state.
Once you have a good roaring fire going it’s time to get some water. Depending on what you have available you may need to make your own water carrying device. If not, yay you! You’re prepared! Gathering water itself will very in difficulty from waiting for a steady rain to scooping some out of a river or spring…and once you have it, you’ll need to boil it.
Next, you’re going to need a food source. I recommend learning your local plants and how to harvest them. A few basic traps and snares won’t do you any harm either. Nor will learning how to prepare and preserve any food you acquire.
I’ll dive into each of these points in excessive depth over the coming weeks but right now what I want to cement is your list of priorities. If you’re going to be surviving in the relative wilderness for any length of time you must address the following needs IN THIS ORDER:
1. Pick a location.
2. Build a shelter.
3. Build a fire.
4. Gather and boil water.
5. Find and prepare food.
Got it? Good. Oh – and this whole process is going to be absolutely filthy. Fair warning.