Sunday, August 25, 2013

Leaving Home. Survival Needs.

This article was originally written for a survival forum.

What survival scenario are we prepping for? Anything & everything. Basically any situation that threatens our quality of life. Any major survival situation that arrises will mean, if we are sensible, leaving the city. Life in the city would become one long firefight & no place for honest citizens & their families.
So let us think seriously about those needs. Are we going to be military soldiers in a war? No we are not. We will have no back-up ammunition supplies, food supplies or anything else. Our main purpose is to survive, not get into a prolonged firefight.
So with this in mind, let's think seriously about what our needs are. Firstly we will be on the move looking for a suitable place to set up home. We can not afford to carry too much weight, but at the same time we need to make sure that we have all the things we 
need to survive long term in a wilderness situation. In any trekking scenario there needs to be a compromise between minimum weight, & maximum self-reliance. So what are our major needs:
Water) We need to carry water with us, but it is heavy, so we must limit the amount we carry. We need to know where water can be found.
Food) We need to carry food. Dry foods are the lightest, but they also often require water to make them edible. Some dry foods however do not require water, dried meat for instance. We need to carry some foods that do not require cooking, because we may not wish to make fire. We also need to be able to set up a trap line, forage & hunt.
Fire) We need to choose a sustainable fire lighting system. Flint, steel & tinderbox fills this function. We also need to know of one other that can be made from nature, such as the Fire-Bow method.
Shelter) No frills needed here, we need something that is versatile, easy to use, & light. An oilcloth serves this purpose better than a tent.
Tools) A kettle for cooking & a cup. A gun or bow for hunting & defense. Blades for hunting, eating, cooking, chores & defense. Rope for trail snares, & the skill to be able to make your own traps. Blades for digging. A small mattock head without the handle should suffice.
Bedding) This needs to be reasonably light, versatile, & warm when wet. I carry one wool blanket, plus spare clothing that I put on at night over my ordinary clothing. This is lighter than carrying two blankets. If my partner is with me, then we have each other plus two blankets to keep us warm on cold nights.
Medical) Some form of medical kit, the best you can get. This should also include a supply of vitamins to take up the slack in a poor diet.
Seeds) When you get to where you are going, you will need to set up some gardens, so carry a good supply of seeds & root stock. Jerusalem Artichokes are a must in this situation.

As you can see, our needs are pretty basic. Do 
not get drawn in to purchasing gadgets & electrical items. We are not in the army, our sole purpose is the travel, keep a low profile, set up a new home, & survive.

Before you start purchasing firearms, think about this: Can you repair this gun if it malfunction? Ammunition for a modern gun can be heavy, how much can you afford to carry & how long do you expect it to last?
Remember, there has to be some compromise. We may be talking years here, not months. Maybe a life time. What are you prepared to leave behind in order to carry this much ammunition? Anything?
But there are alternatives. The primitive bow is one, but this can also be made in the bush if the right timber is available. The other option is a flintlock muzzle-loading gun. This arm has many advantages over the modern breech-loader. If you are a part of a group, you can perhaps afford to carry some modern firearms purely for self-defense, & thereby limit the weight of the ammunition. The flintlock will be your mainstay & carry you through long term.

My Blades.
My Flintlock Fusil.
Woodsrunner’s Skills.
This is a list of basic skills in which I personally would expect an 18th century woodsman or woods-woman to have some experience with.
•   Flint & steel fire lighting
•   Wet weather fire lighting
•   Fire-bow fire lighting
•   Flintlock fire lighting
•   Flintlock use, service & repair
•   Field dressing & butchering game
•   Blade sharpening
•   Tomahawk throwing
•   Making rawhide
•   Brain tanning
•   Primitive shelter construction
•   How to stay warm in winter with only one blanket
•   Cordage manufacture
•   Moccasin construction and repair
•   Sewing
•   Axe and tomahawk helve making
•   Fishing
•   Hunting
•   Evasion
•   Tracking
•   Reading sign
•   Woods lore
•   Navigation
•   Primitive trap construction & trapping
•   Open fire cooking
•   Fireplace construction
•   Clothing manufacture
•   Drying meat & other foods
•   Knowledge of plant tinders & preparation
•   Knowledge of native foods & preparation
•   Knowledge of native plants in the area and their uses for other than tinder and food.
•   Scouting/Ranging.
•   Basic first aid.
•   Finding and treating water.
•   General leather work.

I also have a full list of equipment that our group members carry if you are interested.
Regards, Keith.

Comments & questions are welcome, but please keep them polite & constructive.

No comments:

Post a Comment