Who's able to survive in wilderness for an extended period?

Discussion in 'General Survival and Preparedness' started by fortunateson, Aug 22, 2010.

  1. fortunateson

    fortunateson I hate Illinois Nazis!

    I always thought that the archetype of a survivalist who is able to bug-out and live in the wilderness for an extended period was fiction.

    That was until Eric Rudolph did it for 5 years (more or less - he had some help).

    Anyway, I'll tell you honestly, I can NOT do it. Just don't have the skills or health.

    But I'd like to hear from those who can.

    Where did you get your training?
    What essentials would you need?
    What are the key skills to master?

    Feel free to add anything else that you deem important.
  2. Brokor

    Brokor Live Free or Cry Moderator Site Supporter+++ Founding Member

    You need practice at procuring food, making shelter, locating water and making it safe to drink, creating fire, understanding safety in the wild, knowledge of wild edibles, game preparation and hunting techniques (an extension of procuring food, but fishing is also a part of it), and general preparedness which encompasses mental fitness and your ability to stay healthy (proper foot care, sanitation, etc.)

    I think the greatest of all to become proficient at is mental fitness. Some people just lose their cool after spending just a few hours in the wilderness. They are used to the big cities, the noises, the "safety" and ease of living. Being able to adapt to the trials of the wild is no easy task. More than likely, every person living in the wilderness will (sooner or later) come across tough times for any number of reasons. Essentially, life in the wild is "survival" because a person isn't truly living comfortably at all times --it takes hard work, dedication, and commitment to sustain a life in the outdoors.

    The primary ingredients to acquiring a more "comfortable" survival in the wilderness, aside from what I mentioned above, is to locate near an adequate water supply, and have access to game and fish. Preparation for the change of seasons is also essential and should not be overlooked. Finally, security plays a crucial role in some instances, possibly heightened in a SHTF scenario. There is power in numbers, and it is terribly difficult to defend yourself in your sleep.

    Practice camping in the outdoors often if this is a serious inquiry. As you progress with your knowledge and abilities, try doing it with increasingly less equipment and food supplies. Always bring safety gear and basic survival items such as a compass or GPS, first aid, knife, fire starting materials, water filtration kit, and proper clothing and footwear. Even an experienced outdoorsman may find that they are out of practice if they do not continue to delve into the bush on occasion. There is no "easy" way to survive. It's a tough life and it requires focus and hard work.
  3. bnmb

    bnmb On Hiatus Banned

    Brokor is right...For me, the army was the first class training... The rest is practice...go out and learn... I only don't know how to grow vegetables or work the land...and I have a feeling that my night sky orientation sucks...or is the sky changing... :D ...but I'm learning...
  4. fortunateson

    fortunateson I hate Illinois Nazis!


    Yes. Serious.
    I did not mean to imply any insincerity.

    As for me, I've done a bit of backpacking, even a few solo overnights, but nothing any more serious. Never did any real survival training. I hope to ease into it as my health improves.

    I know there are guys out there who can do the "Les Stroud" thing where they're able to survive until rescue. That's admirable, but just to clarify, I'm interested to know if anyone can or has done it long term and if they're prepared to be "bugged out" indefinitely.
  5. bnmb

    bnmb On Hiatus Banned

    Well...I'm prepared as anyone can be...It's easy if you're alone, but with kids? So far I'm only prepping my house...If SHTF, and we MUST leave, I have picked about 4-5 locations suitable for long term, with possibility of going back and forth for stuff I would have to leave behind...
    It all depends on the situation really...I haven't gone Stroud for long time, but I think I'm prepared for indefinite as I can be...
  6. -06

    -06 Monkey+++

    Absolutely not planning on bugging out but am hopefully fully prepared to go. We have virtual rooms stored in Aluminum shipping containers and in about 15 minutes should be able to leave indefinitely.
    As for living in the wild, one just has to learn and practice. We have a gathering in Oct and as always teach subjects on pioneering/survival skills. There are just a few basics one will have to acquire if he is going to "make it" as a refugee. Water, food, shelter, first aid, communication, and safety. Those six will keep you alive and functional. One needs water filtration or sanitation chems, food either stored or procurable, weather protection fairly permanent or highly movable, adequately trained and supplied medical personel, alternative powered radios, and well supplied armament. Without any one of these and you are in trouble.
  7. dragonfly

    dragonfly Monkey+++

    It depends...
    Weather is the biggest factor for me.
    In winter, I have to procure a shelter, but strangely enough, food it seems is far more available in winter than in summer...at least in the desert regions.
    Water is far easier to get also, due to rain and snowfall.
    Desert Summers can be a real bear!
    I got some experience as a kid in high school, as we used to go camp out around the lakes, and rivers here in the summers.
    Being kids we never had everything we should have, equipment wise, but we did ok! Fishing and hunting were easy then.....
    Then in the military we had survival school.....pick either: matches, a compass, a half filled canteen, or a knife.
    Stay out and see how long you can go, with what you choose to take along.
    ( Thank God I was younger then! It would kill me today to try that!)
    IF given the most basic of requirements, (with knowledge of course) the stay would be indefinite.
    Most made the course end in 2-3 days, some of us made it the whole 2 weeks.
    I chose the knife, and I had lizard and snake meat for almost a week.
    With just the knife, I could make a shelter, make traps and spears, kill and clean critters for food, and with a small flint, even started a fire.
    The knife blade, if cared for properly, made a great signal mirror too.
    ( I had some experience prior to the survival school, as there were a bunch of people always going out backpacking and such in Arizona. I picked their brains LONG before I ever went into the military. Glad I did too!)
    1 week in the desert outside of Fort Bliss Texas, and I was right at home....
    2 weeks in the forest areas around Fort Leonard Wood Missouri, and I was miserable with the humidity, but had a field day with all the wild berries, rabbits and even had some sassafras! Instructors were pissed, asking who had brought root beer or candy along! I showed them my tree bark and after that they kept calling me "Uell Gibbons"....spelling? I was just a country boy at heart from the desert!
    I figure with a decent enough supply of water, I could manage at least 6 or more months.....( most of which would be spent getting food to eat!)
  8. Brokor

    Brokor Live Free or Cry Moderator Site Supporter+++ Founding Member

    Yes. In my first post, I tried to clearly explain to you how this is done. I plan to stay out in the wilderness for extended periods, permanent if needed. Like I said before --humans are just as susceptible to the rigors of life in the wild as any other creature...therefore we must travel to where the food and water is. There is no magic cure for making it in the bush, no easy way, no simple do-it-yourself method --it's hard work. I hope that clarifies.
  9. dragonfly

    dragonfly Monkey+++

    I think it's all greatly dependent on one's mindset about it....
    I used to "play/pretend" I was stranded out in the desert and only had what I had in my pockets...
    It can be quite enlightening and educational!
    Now many people just can't handle the thought of being "stranded", and that's where they get into real trouble,...they panic!
    Make it a game....Like boyscouts, and have fun with it, and it all seems so much simpler to deal with.
    Those that go camping ( without the generator, tv, dvd/vhs player, and MP-3's,) are far better prepared than the rest!
    They get used to doing without, and making do with what they do have.
    The hardest part is to get the mind to accept the fact that you need to concentrate on other things, NOT being alone or stranded as it were....Things like getting food, water, building a shelter, anything to keep the mind occupied....I have seen people go nuts in a simulated scenario where they where placed out in the woods at night with just a flashlight and a compass! It's strange to see reactions of some people how they can react, some even to the point of being violent, due to FEAR of the unknown.
    That's the bad part.
  10. Brokor

    Brokor Live Free or Cry Moderator Site Supporter+++ Founding Member

    It's funny you should mention that because as I was reading your post, I was thinking about a night navigation course in the desert we had to run in the military (actually, it was at Bliss since you also mentioned that). I decided, in my infinite wisdom, to wear my brand new summer combat boots -all the other guys loved theirs, but I always preferred the winterized ones best. Anyway, by the end of the night my feet were barking, the guys were all laughing because they didn't shoot their back azimuth correctly, and I just wanted a passing grade to not have to do it again. We found all markers except one, made the time constraint and passed. If we had spent more time goofing around on that next to last point, we would have failed. Turns out it was a long distance away. I couldn't walk for a week without wincing.
  11. fortunateson

    fortunateson I hate Illinois Nazis!

    Thanks all.

    Good to know that it can be done.

    We're a bug-in family for now, and I'm working at setting up a cabin at our bug-out location. Even that won't be too primitive, but it will be a long distance away.

    I plan to learn some bushcraft skills in case bugging out takes weeks or months of travel, and plan to scout some primitive sites along the route and maybe plant a few caches.

    little by little...
  12. happyhunter42

    happyhunter42 Monkey+++

    As was stated in this thread earlier if I was alone I could probably stay out on my own for about 2 weeks, but no longer. The wife and kids are not designed for anything longer than 1 day roughing it.
  13. bnmb

    bnmb On Hiatus Banned

    Huh...mine too...but I'll put the fear of Bane in them soon enough and force them to start reading, learning and doing things...or I'll kick the sheet out of them!...They'll survive, whether they like it or not! Otherwise, I'll kill them if they don't!... [booze]b::
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