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3 Must-Know Survival Skills to Keep you Alive in the Wilderness

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Serena is a digital nomad who writes about work, emotions, and self-improvement.


If you are in a situation where you are trapped in the wilderness and need to survive, will you know what to do? Being prepared beforehand can increase your chances of comfort and level safety.

Here are three vital skills you should know in case you ever find yourself in this type of situation:

1. Make Shelter.

If you know that you will be outdoors for a while, you will need to quickly assemble shelter so that you are protected from either the heat or the cold. If the climate is hot, then the main goal is to build shelter that will provide adequate shade and breeze. You may want to dig beneath soil of the ground to find cooler ground temperatures and make sure that air is flowing through your make-do hut. If the climate is cold, plan to make shelter that will insulate you from the coldness of the ground and the air around you. You will want to put nearby plant material packed together on the ground to keep you warm and a blanket or any cloth-like material on the surrounding “walls” of your structure.

2. Find Clean Water.

One of the most essential tasks you should know how to do when trapped in the wilderness is finding clean water to drink. Rain water is safe to drink, so you can collect it and store it if it happens to rain. Boiling water also is a form of purification so this would work as well if you have a way to do so. If you are surrounded by snow, refrain from eating it since it will take a lot of energy for your body to convert it into water. Instead, melt the ice using the heat of the sun or your body heat and then drink it. Plants will also collect dew which is typically safe to drink; if you have a plastic bag, attach it to the plant and you can collect safe drinking water from it. Beware of drinking from saltwater sources as this will dehydrate you and will be more harmful than helpful.

3. Make a Fire.

Another crucial skill to be prepared with is the ability to make a fire out in the wilderness. One way to make a fire from scratch is to use a magnifying glass or lens to concentrate light into a tinder pile. Always make sure that your fire has a base that is non-inflammatory so it stays in one place and doesn’t spread out of control. Wait until the light is about a quarter inch in diameter and hold it for 30 seconds to one minute. When you start to see smoke gently blow on it to create a flame. Another way to start a fire is to use a battery and steel wool - you would need to bring this along with you to be prepared to use it. Rub the battery on the steel wool and then blow on it to start a flame. You can also bring matches and it will easily do the trick. Starting a fire without having materials requires practice, so try this before you go on any adventures.

If you have these three skills down you are in a much better position to keep yourself alive until you can get back into civilization! Good luck!

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This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2021 Serenity


E Randall from United States on March 04, 2021:

Good information, thank you for posting.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on February 27, 2021:

Survival skills could be life saving. Thanks for sharing these essential skills with us.

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