There are certain survival skills that should be known by every person on this planet. These specific skills are the ones that will often mean the difference between life and death in an emergency situation. I sometimes wonder how the world forgot where it came from in such a short amount of time.
When you look back on the history of our world and the many centuries people have passed through to get to where we are now, how have we forgotten so much?
Ask a grown woman to light a simple campfire and she’ll no doubt go looking for the lighter, or a box of matches at the very least. Ask a man to fill a basket with berries found in a forest and chances are, he’ll return with either an empty basket or filled with berries too toxic to eat.
It wasn’t that long ago that every person knew the basics of survival, from foraging for food to building a fire for cooking, warmth, and security. They could build a temporary shelter from nothing but fallen trees, branches, and some mud.
They would find water in the driest of places and know how to navigate their way around using nothing more than the sun, stars, and simple markers.
Our way of life has changed so dramatically over the past century that all the information our ancestors had learned over hundreds, if not, thousands of years, has simply vanished. That information is now relegated to dusty books hidden in the far corners of libraries.
But why? Do we seriously believe that there won’t come a time where we may rely on such important information? If a disaster strikes tomorrow, leaving you completely homeless, could you survive?
Essential Survival Skills Every Prepper Should Learn
Skill #1: Finding Water
The single most important element to the human body is water. Without it, expect to lose your life within 3 days.
That’s why emergency water rations sit at the top of most prepper’s lists. But what if you get separated from your water storage? A disaster may destroy your water cache, leaving you helpless and desperate to locate a new source.
Remember the 3 G’s and you should be OK to locate some water. These are Gravity, Greenery, and Ground.
Gravity will always pull water down, meaning it tends to sit in valleys, beneath hills and mountains. Most creeks and rivers run through the valleys and this should be your first spot to check.
Greenery will also reveal where sources of water may lie, as will any animals and birds. Every living thing needs a steady water supply, you just need to find them.
If you become desperate, digging a hole in the ground may be enough to find a water source. But remember to boil this water as it tends to harbor bacteria and parasites.
Skill #2: Building a Fire
A fire is more than a method for heating your food. It will also boil water and make it safe enough to drink; provide warmth from a freezing night and also provide safety from wandering animals. But building it may prove a little more difficult.
Make sure to carry several methods, including matches, lighters, and also the tinder needed to light the flames. Also include a magnifying glass if you really become desperate, as focusing the sun’s rays through one is a sure-fire way to work.
A broken piece of glass and also a piece of smoothed-out ice are also usable in this instance. Just remember to start small and work your way up.
Skill #3: Building a Shelter
Shelters are one of the more important aspects of survival, keeping you out of the elements during a fierce storm. Many natural structures are great to use, such as caves, hollow trees, leaning rocks, or even a fallen tree.
If you need to create a specific shelter, leaning a branch against a tree trunk is a great way to start. You build upon that first branch with more branches until you create a sufficient shelter. Remember, they are only temporary. Also try to keep a small ax on you, if possible.
Skill #4: Navigation
While a compass is one of the best ways to keep you following a straight line, you may lose yours, or you may just forget to take one along. Not everybody will have one on their list. That’s where a couple of other methods work great.
The sun is a great way to give you a sense of direction as well. Push a stick into the ground and see where the shadow falls.
Draw a line along it and wait a few moments. The direction the shadow moves in is close enough to east.
Skill #5: Finding Food
When using survival skills, there are 4 basic ways to find food when out in the wild and none of them include a supermarket. They are
Turning a simple stick into a spear by attaching a knife; keeping a fishing hook and a small piece of line, or just using the terrain to trap any small wild animals are all great ways to catch food.
Skill #6: Cooking
When it comes to cooking anything out in the wild, always err on the side of caution. Never take chances. Always ensure you only eat meat that has been well cooked.
Overcooked is better than under-cooked. And never eat anything from an animal’s insides. Caution is far better here. Understanding these survival skills are important for anyone serious about surviving a disaster. For more great survival hints, check these out.