Most humans have natural survival instincts but modern life has significantly dulled them. As a result, if you become stranded in the woods, you will find it very hard to survive if you don’t have any survival skills. There are many reasons why you may have become lost in the woods such as you were a part of a hiking group and got separated or because of an accident or plane crash. Whatever the reasons may be, we will now look at a few tips and guidelines on how to survive in woods. By following these guidelines you will be able to find help or at least remain alive until you are found by rescuers.
When You Realize You’re Lost!
The first tip is that the moment you realize that you’re lost or stranded in the woods is to calm down. Most people immediately start panicking and this is the worst thing that you can do. When you panic, you become irrational which will cause you to do things without thinking. This is definitely dangerous since you can cause injury to yourself or others who are with you. So, take a few moments to sit down, breathe and calm yourself. If you want to know how to survive in woods, you need to control your mind first. Once you’re calm, you should survey your surroundings and take stock of the tools and supplies you have on hand.
Mark Your Location
The location where you realize that you’re lost is known as point zero and you should mark it. You can do this by using a pile of rocks, marking the trees or using a few spare pieces of cloth on branches. This will prove valuable in the event that you start walking in circles and will also help rescuers find you. The next tip is that you should learn how to tell directions so you can determine where you’re going. An easy way to identify direction is to see where the sun rises and sets. The sun rises in the East and sets in the West. You should also learn how to identify the North star in the night so you differentiate between North and South.
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Increase Your Chances of Being Found
If possible, you should consider staying in one place in order to increase your chances of being found. For this reason, before you go hiking, camping or out in the wilderness, you should always tell someone where you’re going and when you’ll be back. Once someone knows your whereabouts, they will be able to realize that you’re missing and inform the authorities. By staying in one place, you will most likely be found much faster.
In the event that you’re not safe and can’t stay in one place, then you should look for somewhere safer to set up a shelter. This is especially important because you don’t want to be in the open woods during the night when the predators are out. Also, by creating a shelter, you will be able to protect yourself against the elements which can causes conditions like heat stroke or hypothermia. You can use a cave as shelter, however, you should make sure that the cave is not already occupied by a bear or other wild animal. Otherwise you can use a tree and branches to construct a crude shelter.
How To Create a Fire
Next, you should create a fire, especially before night. You should start building the fire sooner than you think in order to prevent panic as it gets dark. Make sure to gather enough dry wood to last the night as well as dry materials that will act as kindling. When building the fire, make sure it isn’t too close to your shelter and it is small enough so that you can handle it and keep it burning all night.
The Fire Bow Drill is one of the best methods found to be useful while lost in the woods
The bow drill is most likely probably the most efficient friction based technique to use because it’s simpler to sustain the speed and stress you need to create enough friction to begin a fire. As well as the spindle and fireboard, you will also want a socket along with a bow.
1. Get a socket. The socket is employed to place stress around the other end in the spindle as you’re rotating it with all the bow. The socket may be a stone or yet another piece of wood. If you use an additional piece of wood, try to find a tougher piece than what you’re making use of for the spindle. Wood with sap and oil are excellent because it creates a lubricant among the spindle and also the socket.
2. Make your bow. The bow ought to be about provided that your arm. Use a versatile piece of wood which has a slight curve. The string of the bow could be anything. A shoelace, rope, or strip of rawhide operates great. Just discover some thing that will not break. String up your bow and you are ready to go.
3. Prepare the fireboard. Reduce a v-shaped notch and develop a depression adjacent to it within the fireboard. Underneath the notch, place your tinder.
4. String up the spindle. Catch the spindle inside a loop from the bow string. Location 1 end of the spindle within the fireboard and apply stress on the other finish along with your socket.
5. Commence sawing. Using your bow, begin sawing back and forth. You have fundamentally produced a rudimentary mechanical drill. The spindle needs to be rotating quickly. Keep sawing till you create an ember.
6. Make you fire. Drop the ember in to the tinder nest and blow on it gently. You got yourself a fire.
Water and Food Supply Tips
Water and food should be next on your list in order to survive. The human body can survive three weeks without food but can only survive three days without water. So, your first priority should be to find clean water. The best place to get drinking water is from a spring but if you can’t find a spring, then you should look for a running stream. Drinking from a stream is dangerous and you could get sick, so make sure that you purify any water first before drinking. Boiling the water using fire is a crude way to purify it.
In the event that you’re out in the woods for days, you will need to find food. If you’re near water, you should try to catch fish or if you can’t then you can eat insects. However, make sure to cook the insects first as they may have parasites. You should avoid eating plants and berries that you’re unfamiliar with since they can be poisonous.
Top 20 Edible Insects:
- Agave Worm - sometimes included in tequila bottles as proof of authenticity and alcohol content
- Honeypot Ants – they are dug up from the ground and eaten raw by aboriginal peoples in Australia
- Leafcutter Ants – taste like a cross between bacon and pistachio, and are usually eaten toasted
- Lemon Ants - found in the Amazon jungle and are said to taste like lemons
- Bamboo Worm – Often eaten fried in Thailand
- Bees (Roasted) - Bee larvae, especially, are prized in many cultures as tasty morsels
- Centipede – Most often found as a street food in China
- Cicada - just after they molt, they have soft, juicy bodies, and are said to be very tender and delicious
- Cockroach - Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches have a taste and texture like greasy chicken
- Cricket - eaten fried, sauteed, boiled, and roasted
- Dragonfly – Often eaten boiled or fried
- Dung Beetle - often eaten fried, are quite tasty.
- Earthworm – known to be high in protein and iron
- Fly pupae - has been found to be similar to that of some fish oils.
- Flying Ant- They are said to taste something like buttery pork rinds
- Grasshopper – in Mexico, these are eaten roasted with chile and lime
- June Bug – Native Americans roasted them over coals and ate them like popcorn
- Locust – one of the few insects condoned by the bible
- Jumiles – they can survive the cooking process, and thus are often eaten alive
- Mopane Worm -When dried, they are said to taste like an earthy jerky
How To Signal For Help
Lastly, you should create a signal to help rescuers find you. This can be three fires in a line or even three big piles of rocks in a triangle or side by side. Three sets of anything in the wild is a distress signal and will attract the attention of other humans and your rescuers.
In closing, we have just discussed how to survive in woods if you find yourself lost or stranded. The above tips will definitely help you to stay alive and increase your chances of being found.