Everyone should know how to survive in the wilderness, whether you are an experienced hiker or if your car breaks down. Being prepared for any emergency is key when it comes to survival. Knowing your priorities is extremely important. And your first priority should always be to get away from immediate danger. After that, the five basic skills listed below will go a long way in helping to keep you safe and sound in the wilderness.
1. Basic First Aid
Knowing how to perform basic first aid is the first best skill anyone should know period. There are three common injuries that knowing how to fix will help you get by. Minor cuts and scrapes can be ignored as long as they are not infected. If you have a deep cut or wound you will need a shirt, towel etc. to help suppress the bleeding. The article of clothing or item should be tied tightly around the limb just above the wound. Pull the item taut until you notice the stop of blood flow. You can then use any other material you may have to cover the wound itself.
Dislocating bones can be very painful but you must get it back in place. If you dislocate your shoulder you can roll on the ground to help put the bone back in place. Kneecaps can be put back in place simply by stretching your leg straight. If you experience a fracture you can use sticks from the wilderness to create a splint.
2. Building A Shelter
Maintaining your body temperature is essential when trying to survive in the wild. It is important to stay warm, yet cool, if you are lost in a desert. In cold situations, you need to keep warm to prevent hypothermia from setting in. Creating a shelter is a great way to maintain your body temperature. When building a shelter you must focus on blocking the elements and keeping it insulated. A tarp can be used or even a garbage bag stuffed with leaves or grass.
3. Starting A Fire
Knowing how to build a fire is important to keep warm and cook your food. Before you build, pay attention to the wind direction and stay away from dry grass and leaves. Starting a fire isn’t easy, here are a few tips to help get you started. If it’s sunny outside and you happen to have a pair of reading glasses you should be able to start a fire. Use the lens to angle the sun at a pile of dry leaves or twigs. Keep carefully blowing on the fire to start the flame. The age old trick to start a fire in the wilderness is with sticks. Roll a stick on a log to create friction to start the fire.
4. Finding Water
You can survive longer without food then you can without water. You can find water by following the sound of a river. Grazing animals can lead you to a water source and flies and mosquitos stay within 400 feet of water. Of course, once you find the water, you’ll also need to purify it for drinking the best way that you can. If you don’t have water purification tablets with you, then using a shirt as a sieve to remove debris and then boiling the water over your fire is the way to clean it.
5. Finding Food
Edible plants can help you get by temporarily. The entire nut from an acorn is edible. Pine nuts, cattails and grass can also be consumed as food. Plants can be poisonous and deadly so it is important to know the difference between good and bad. You can test a plant by putting a small piece of it on your lip, then your tongue, and then your mouth. You have to wait at least eight hours before being able to tell if the plant is safe or not.