Don't think I am a survival guru writing this…I am just a Boy Scout who is studying survival techniques, have used many of them and thought I would share them with you. Now, as the Scout Motto says, "BE PREPARED" to learn some survival basics.

The first thing you need to survive is shelter. It will protect you from the elements. A shelter can be anything from a makeshift shelter to a tent. Chances are you probably will not have a tent with you, but in your survival kit you should have some rope. It can be used to lash branches together to make a simple lean-to shelter. To do this first pick a branch that is taller than your height. Next, hammer two forked sticks the length of that stick into the ground and lay the first branch on them, then lash them together. Then, lay sticks at a 45 degree angle against the structure you have made. Now you can weave saplings in and out of those sticks and then finally, put foliage on top of that like shingles. This is a good all around shelter, but in icy climates you can build snow shelters such as a quinze. All you have to do for this is make a huge pile of snow, let it harden, then hollow it out. Be safe with this and put air holes in it. Also you can buy ready made shelters on this website such as tube tents.

Next for survival you need fire. There are many ways I have learned to light a fire. The simplest one is flint and steel. You may not know were to find some flint, but on this website you can buy magnesium which sometimes can be even better then natural flint. First, you need tinder. If it's raining and the whole woods is wet you might not be able to find any tinder. So I suggest you keep waterproof tinder in your survival kit. Another good fire starter to keep in your survival kit would be firesticks and if you have some dryer lint in your survival kit this will catch quickly and catch onto the fuel but it will burn quickly. Gather at least two armloads of wood before you start a fire - ten should last you through the night. Now put your tinder on your fire site and scrape some magnesium onto your tinder. Then push your knife at a 45 degree angle against the flint, you should get a fire if the sparks get on the magnesium. Don't be discouraged if you do not get it the first time.

Then, you need water and food. There are so many ways they say you can get pure water, but the easiest way to purify water is to boil it for ten minuets. Probably in the wild your main food will be fish, and small mammals. In your survival kit you should have some fishing gear, but if you do not have any fishing gear you can make a simple trap. Now, in almost all environments you can catch rabbits and squirrels using snares.

Now lastly for survival you should have a survival kit. You can buy a pre-made survival kit on this website or you can make one, but if you buy one or make it should contain the same items.

A survival kit should contain:

  • Shelter or shelter building materials
  • At least one good knife
  • A compass
  • Matches
  • Water purification tablets
  • Needles and tread
  • Fishing gear
  • Wire
  • First aid items
  • Magnifying Glass
  • Pencil and paper
  • A wire saw
  • Signaling Mirror
  • Waterproof tinder
  • Rope or parachute chord
  • A mind full of survival knowledge

Now with this basic knowledge I have provided you should be confident enough to survive. For more information regarding survival, you can use the internet or your local library. Or maybe, it you are the right age, join boy scouting. It's a great way to learn many skills.

-Travis Kaminsky


A wonderful job. Super helfupl information.
Travis, job well done Scout. I am the current Asst. Scoutmast with Troop 392 in Kingsburg Calif. Thank you for all you help you made all of us adult Scout leaders proud.

good ideas and general enough to actually be helpfull....... Steve
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