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  • #2418
    Profile photo of instructor
    instructor
    Survivalist
    member3

    In the UK, most people who become lost are often day hikers or climbers who fully expect to sleep in their own bed (or at least in their own sleeping bag) that night.

    But a turn onto the wrong trail or an extra twenty minutes of late afternoon climbing can result in an unexpected overnight stay. Not forgetting an injury event either.

    If you don’t carry a “survival kit” as such, there are a few inexpensive yet essential items I seldom venture far from home without.
    Among these are:
    A reliable, sturdy knife (I recommend the Chris Cain Survival knife).
    A good-quality multi-tool.
    A length of Parachute cord.

    A competent knowledge of how to use these three items will allow you to cut poles, prepare kindling, lash together a shelter, make a bow-drill fire, and perform a host of other tasks.

    Other items include:
    A foil emergency blanket can also be used as an improvised poncho, ground cloth, or tarp.

    First aid kit. It should include gauze, bandages, butterflies, antibiotic cream, plasters etc.

    Compass: Worthwhile if you know how to use it, or know the approximate direction of nearby major landmarks.

    A Wooley hat (even in warm weather). In addition to keeping you warm, it can be used as a bag.

    A magnesium striker

    A method of water purification (such as a Purificup or lifesaver Bottle).

    A whistle. In really remote areas, a signal mirror is also a worthy addition.
    Tips:
    Learn to construct a simple cold-weather survival shelter. It doesn’t take a freezing night to bring about fatal hypothermia. Temperatures even in the fifties can be disastrous if you are improperly dressed or wet.

    Always carry or wear a bandana. It can be used as a bandage, sling, or carrying bundle. A belt is useful, too.

    Wrap a quantity of duct tape around your water bottle. Use good quality tape.

    Stay put: You arrive at “lostness” from one direction, a single degree out of 360.

    You have 359 chances to depart your situation in the wrong direction.

    Make a base camp: As humans, our sense of well-being is improved when we have a place to call home, even if it is a temporary one.

    Locate it in an area that is out of the wind, and where it won’t be flooded during a rainstorm.

    Learn how to tie and use half a dozen or so simple but useful knots. Overhand knot, square knot, clove hitch, bowline, sheet bend, lark’s head, timber hitch, and variations on the half-hitch are good suggestions.

    Customize your list: Include items specific to your needs such as daily or emergency medications, inhalers, or epi-pens.

    Practice your skills and become familiar with your gear before you need them, so you know what to expect! when the time comes to use them, as it is then too late to learn them.

    Having to night –out even with what some would see as sub-standard kit is not the end of the world so don’t panic.

    Having clothes on is better than being naked, being behind a wall, hedge or tree is better than being exposed to the elements.

    Being under a poncho is better than being wet, being in a cheap tent is better than being in a poncho, being in a sleeping is better than being without one, I think you get the message.
    Any shelter is better than none.

    You main priority in finding shelter is to defend your body from the weather that is it you must keep dry and warm to have a chance of survival.

    And as long as you understand the basic principles you can go on survival exercises even without the top of the range designer kit, because people have survived with far less before they were invented and I promise people will continue to do so in the future.

    #2771
    anika
    anika
    Survivalist
    rreallife

    I read a funny cartoon the other day that said “Whoever decided to call it “common sense” must not have known that many people.” Thank you for all the good reminders, and new info, too, because though a lot of it is common sense, it’s sometimes easy to forget in times of stress!

    #2962
    Profile photo of lci115lewis
    lci115lewis
    Survivalist
    member3

    Modify your kit to match the environment/weather.

    Living in a desert here are the changes I would make to your list (unchanged elements from your list in italics, my changes in bold, my comments in plain font):

    Among these are:
    A reliable, sturdy knife (I recommend the Chris Cain Survival knife).
    A good-quality multi-tool.
    A length of Parachute cord.

    A definite good start to any EDC list, I always have some para cord, a multi tool and at least 2 sturdy pocket knives with me when I leave the house, a fixed blade hunting knife or an old Canadian fighting knife usually join me when I head out of the urban sprawl along with a walking stick and frequently a surplus British IPK (Individual Protection Kit, a light weight vinyl tarp, about 50 feet of nylon cord, and some aluminum stakes, meant to assist in providing overhead shelter to fighting positions).

    <SNIP>

    A Wide brimmed hat – in addition to keeping you cooler, it can be used as a bag.

    <SNIP>

    As much water as you can reasonably carry and do not ration it, drink when you want to, if you feel thirsty you are already at least partially dehydrated. A common rule of thumb around here is if you can’t remember when you last had to pee, you need to drink more water. – I usually have a 3 liter hydration bladder in the backpack I use for my daily commute to work between the beginning of May and the end of September, that is only 5 miles but you can sweat quite a bit in the 45 minutes it takes from when I walk out the door for the bus stop and when I get to my office door, I frequently use close to 2 liters in that daily round trip when the weather is over 100 deg F.

    <SNIP>
    Tips:
    Learn to construct a simple shade structure, when it is hot out you stay in the shade as much as you can in the daytime, limit your activity as much as possible to night time.

    Always carry or wear a bandana. It can be used as a bandage, sling, or carrying bundle. A belt is useful, too. Yes, if you can wet the bandana down a bit it will really help to cool you down when draped over the shoulders, or keep the sun off your neck.

    <SNIP>

    Stay put: You arrive at “lostness” from one direction, a single degree out of 360. If you are in a vehicle that breaks down, stay near the vehicle, it is a lot easier to spot that a person.

    <SNIP>

    Make a base camp: As humans, our sense of well-being is improved when we have a place to call home, even if it is a temporary one.

    Locate it in an area that is out of the wind, and where it won’t be flooded during a rainstorm.
    This is important even in the desert, flash floods can come from storms you can’t see or hear, stay out of the washes, no mater how much shade is there in them.

    <SNIP>
    Having clothes on is better than being naked, being behind a wall, hedge or tree is better than being exposed to the elements. A light weight long sleeved shirt, long pants and closed toe shoes are preferred. Keep the sun off as much of you as possible and be ready for the temperature to drop a lot at night.

    <SNIP>
    Any shelter is better than none. YES! Shade is good, but remember that all the desert wildlife knows that too, so be careful where you step, sit or put your hands. At least here everything will try to hurt you, if it is not poisonous/venomous it has thorns, spikes, sharp edges, claws or sharp teeth, this applies to the fauna AND the flora.

    You main priority in finding shelter is to defend your body from the weather that is it you must keep cool and hydrated to have a chance of survival.

    Rob from Mesa Arizona, USA (since I don’t know how far flung the early membership here will be)

    #2980
    Profile photo of instructor
    instructor
    Survivalist
    member3

    lci115lewis, thank you for taking the time to reply in such detail, I totally agree with you as what you say makes sense.

    #2982
    Profile photo of instructor
    instructor
    Survivalist
    member3

    Anika, I like that LOL, but it is true. Thank you for your reply and your very kind words.

    #2987
    Gypsy Wanderer Husky
    Gypsy Wanderer Husky
    Survivalist
    exprepper

    Modify your kit to match the environment/weather I agree with this completely, Newfoundland is well known for having four seasons with in the run of a day!!

    Prepare for the unknown by studying how others in the past have coped with the unforeseeable and the unpredictable.
    George S. Patton

    #2991
    Profile photo of Kollaps
    Kollaps
    Survivalist
    member3

    Same here with TN, Gypsy! When the temp can drop 60 degrees in 12 hours, it is a good idea to have a basic kit for any scenario.

    I would also recommend a construction-strength trashbag for many of the same uses as the foil blanket, as well as for “purifying” water.

    #2994
    Profile photo of instructor
    instructor
    Survivalist
    member3

    Gypsy Wanderer Husky and Kollaps you are both right and thank you for your thoughts

    #3191
    Profile photo of lci115lewis
    lci115lewis
    Survivalist
    member3

    That’s funny, here in Arizona we are known for having only 3 seasons in the year, with 6 months being considered Summer (we hit 100 degrees on Halloween just a few years ago), and the only people who think we have any winter are those who have never lived outside the Phoenix metro area for any length of time beyond a vacation.

    #5425
    Whirlibird
    Whirlibird
    Survivalist
    member10

    Lots of good info so far.

    Additions:
    LED headlamp.
    There is almost nothing as stupidly dangerous than trying to navigate a trail in the dark while trying to carry more firewood in, find your way back to camp after a call of nature or the like.
    Making that fire after dark becomes even more challenging while trying to hold a flashlight (carry one also) where you can see what you’re doing.
    I use mine all the time, working around the house, on the car, and when the power goes out occasionally.

    Carry the hd contractors trash bags, they have many uses, but combined with a space blanket can create a sleeping area so warm you may forget where you are , at least temporarily.

    Guidebooks! As many as you can on native species of flora and fauna for your area. Euell Gibbons books on foraging are worth every dime despite their age.
    You don’t want your last words to be those of Socrates, “I drank what?”

    Plan for the worst. Be it a blizzard in July (been there), multiple flat tires whole out for a drive or any of the little things that can turn a beautiful day into a tragedy.

    And remember ultralight doesn’t always mean long lasting.

    #5789
    Profile photo of 74
    74
    Survivalist
    rnews

    Trash bags make great emergency rain ponchos cut a tee on the seam for your head. Trim the collar points off if they are poking you in the neck. Cheap bags are so soft there is no bother.

    #5900
    Darin Prentice
    Darin Prentice
    Survivalist
    member4

    nice info… im told ” there’s nothing common about common sense”… all the tips here are worthy and im writing them into my family preparedness book.
    thanks all…

    Prepare, Preserve, Protect...

    #6715
    Tolik
    Tolik
    Survivalist
    member10

    Just curious , does anybody have the Firebox folding stove ? if so , how do you like it ?

    #6808
    Profile photo of freedom
    freedom
    Survivalist
    rnews

    instructor, Great information.
    Parachute cord, duck tape a good knife. You can do so much with just though three items. The rest are very important too!

    You can do so many thing with the duck tape and the parachute cord. You can write a book.

    I am a knife man love them. I can buy a good knife and look at it for days. I like the knife made in the U. S. A. or Europe. Spanish, Italian, German knife are great.

    Also you need a good fire starter. Keeping dry and warm is important, this is were the duck tape and parachute cord come handy.

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