It goes without saying there are more than 5 important survival skills to know and apply. Given the many outdoor-related television shows and YOU Tube videos available, everybody is offering up what they think is important for surviving the wilderness.
While all of these presentations help, it is in answering these specific 5 questions that will make or break your preparation and prevention for your next adventure.
Therefore, can you answer these questions with a resounding YES? More important, can you prove the answer before you leave on your next adventure?
Remember it is one thing to understand wilderness survival skills; it is yet another to be skilled in the skills.
1) Can you build a 60 minute or less shelter to minimize effort and converse energy “for the seasonal activity?” Link the equipment you are carrying with you with the available resources around you. Be attentive to the balance between shelter construction versus effort.
2) What does it mean to stay found if assistance is needed along the trip? Everyday, stories are heard and read where lost people kept moving and became ill/injured. Unless where you are is dangerous, stay in one place, stay found! Think through ways to alert rescuers from this base of operations. That is of course “your friends or family have set in motion your rescue if you do not report in according to plan.
3) What is the best signalling device for the location in which you are travelling should you need help immediately? The old stand by is blowing your whistle. However, what if you need to signal an aircraft? Of the various devices available take some time to learn which one or two would work best for your next adventure. Remember not all days are sunny, and help can arrive at night.
4) Can you start a fire within 30 minutes based on the conditions you will encounter along your trip? There are simple supplies you can bring with you to help. Check out how cotton balls, lint and petroleum jelly can be combined to sustain a flame upon which you build a fire. And be aware of the resources around you!
5) What is the best way to obtain clean water along your trip, if the water you are carrying was consumed? There are many ways in which to collect water. Break out your survival books and scan the ones linked to where you are going. Copy the ideas and carry them with you. And don’t underestimate the importance of water. Considering the conditions and your effort you will need to replenish your body to keep you alert to what is happening within you and around you.
If you are about to leave on your next adventure trip, and you hesitated in answering these questions; then get yourself to the next outdoor survival course and learn, practice and practice some more.
Prevention is Queen, Preparation is King!