Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Les Stroud...what are you thinking?

So here we go...
You have probably heard of a television show called Survivorman, hosted by Canadian survivalist Les Stroud.  Les has himself dumped into a survival situation and left alone to survive for one week with few if any supplies.  What amazes me is that he never has any of the basic supplies that any outdoorsman on an expedition should have.  That's right, no personal survival kit.

A personal survival kit is an absolute requirement for anyone going hiking, boating, hunting or any other activity where there is a possibility of getting lost or stranded in the outdoors.  The key to a personal survival kit is it's size.  It has to be compact enough to go on your belt yet big enough to hold a variety of survival tools and supplies.

Here is what your kit should contain:
Food items such as an energy bar or two and maybe some trail mix. 
Hot drinks like instant coffee or tea bags.
Dried soup mix...a little goes a long way.
These should be stored in a waterproof pouch like a ziplok bag or a home vacuum sealed pouch.

Matches or fire starter.  Get waterproof wood matches or better yet, a magnesium & flint fire starter.
a piece or two of waxed cardboard fire starter would be a great idea if space allows.

Fishing line and a few hooks, lures, sinkers etc.  Get small spinners and all the terminal tackle you can.  These are small and fit compactly into your kit.  If you get stranded near water you can fish for food.  Remember, there are no freshwater poisonous fish.

Snare wire, enough for three or moor loop snares for catching small game.

Para cord, as much as you can.  This can be used for shelter making.

Aluminum foil, folded small for use as a reflector and cooking.  Form it into a cup to boil water for purifying.

Emergency blanket...these are small and cheap.  Great for shelter making and they are reflective to help keep you warm.

First aid supplies, I know, 3 triangular bandages makes for a lot of bulk. 
Get the basics, various bandaids(knuckle, fingertip and regular).
Alcohol or antiseptic wipes.
Roll of gauze.
First aid tape.
Latex or nytril gloves.
Anything else usefull that will fit.

Signal device......flare pen, whistle, signal mirror.

Finally,instructions.
Snare wire will do no good if you don't know how to use it.  Go on the internet and find some intructions with pictures.  Print it out and fold it up in a ziploc bag with your first aid guide.

Notice that I seem to have forgotten a pocket knife....well no.  Your knife should be with you anyways at all times, in your pocket where it belongs.

Keep this kit on your belt at all time in the wilderness.  If you put it in your backpack, you risk losing it if your canoe tips or your pack is somehow lost.

This is something I learned to put together in scouts and has stuck with me ever since.  So just one question for Les Stroud.....
No personal survival kit?
What are you thinking?

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