Wilderness Survival: Living Off the Land with the Clothes on Your Back and the Knife on Your Belt
Mark Elbroch, Michael Pewtherer
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
Do you have what it takes?
You're alone in the wilderness with nothing but a knife and the clothes on your back. Will you survive? Do you have the skills to feed, clothe, and protect yourself? Mark Elbroch, a master tracker, and Mike Pewtherer, a wilderness survival instructor, put those questions to the test when they embarked on a 46-day, unprovisioned, unequipped journey into the fields and forests of the northeastern United States.
Wilderness Survival is their highly practical and uniquely observant introduction to survival in the deep woods. Mark and Mike tested generally accepted truths, questioned conventional solutions, and distilled the best techniques for making fire, obtaining shelter, finding water, and hunting with primitive weapons. They give you:
* A life-saving handbook of survival skills that explores man's place in the natural world
* The secret to surviving in the wilderness as part of nature--not its adversary
* Explanations of more than 30 wilderness survival skills, including hunting and gathering food, fashioning tools, and preserving and storing food
They require maintenance to varying degrees (continuous fire tending, reheating rocks each night). The advantages include: • They provide sheltered space in which to work. • They provide protected storage space. • Their “hominess” serves as a morale booster— a function frequently overlooked but very valuable. Other shelters, like debris huts, squirrel nests, and bedding-filled, pit-type shelters, need no heat source other than the occupant. The drawbacks of such shelters include the following: •
The Quick Still or Transpiration Bag The quick still requires one plastic bag, a pebble, and bit of cordage. The bag is placed over the end of a branch with green leaves and is exposed to the sun. A pebble is placed in one corner to create a low spot, or the bag can usually be manipulated to do the same sans pebble. The bag is tied shut, blocking any flow of air in or out of the bag. Water will evaporate out of the leaves, condense on the bag, and run down to the low spot. To improve this
fire-making skills suitable to long-term wilderness living, see Chapter 8. • Through direct application of something already alight or exceptionally hot, such as rocks pulled from a fire, or focusing sunlight with a magnifier of some sort. (When I was grinding acorns to flour, I smelled something burning and discovered that the sun was being reflected, satellite-dish style, off of the inside wall of the metal bowl containing the flour and had actually ignited the flour.) • By converting energy
are usually dry. If you are in doubt, break a piece of wood. If it snaps in two without much bending, it should be good. A broken branch can be held against the upper lip, which is very sensitive to moisture, as another “dry test.” When you are collecting firewood, keep in mind that it is not necessary to break it all into eighteen-inch lengths. Let the fire work for you and burn longer logs in half. Caution: be very aware of fire danger in your area, and be sure to keep fire contained within
descended, and what, if any, landmarks you saw on your way in. If you have a good view, you can orient your map to true north and locate hilltops or mountaintops that are visible on both the map and landscape. Take a bearing on them, and draw a pencil line on the map that corresponds to that bearing. After doing this with one peak, you have identified a line on which you are located. To determine where on the line you are, you must repeat the process with another landmark that is preferably not