Top 10 Survival Skills to Put Into Practice

Note: This article may contain commentary or the author's opinion.

Survival requires hard skills, resilience, and a drive to live. Wilderness survival ideas that could save your life are below.

Outdoor survival skills can help you survive a life-threatening emergency. Examples include knowing how to erect a shelter, forage for food plants, find water, and build a fire.

To test yourself, practice hard skills under situations that mimic the problems you would face in the field. Mental training, positivity, and creative problem-solving also matter. Consistent practice and development can strengthen your confidence so that you can remain resilient in the face of hardship.

Consider these outdoor survival skills:

1. Build a fire. Start a fire with dry leaves, pine needles, or small bits of wood to cook, stay warm, or keep animals away from your shelter. Firestarters or waterproof matches ignite tinder and kindling.

2. Build a temporary shelter. Depending on the climate, weather, terrain, and resources, you may build a temporary shelter until rescuers arrive. It would be best if you insulated your shelter to assist you in retaining necessary body heat in cold weather or give solar protection to decrease dehydration in a hot, dusty region. You should insulate your shelter to assist you in retaining necessary body heat in cold weather or give solar protection to decrease dehydration in a hot, dusty region.

3. Prioritize. The “rule of threes” states that the average person can survive three hours without shelter, three days without water, and three weeks without food. The rule of threes can govern field efforts, but these timings vary by person and climate.

4. Find pure water. Finding and gathering drinking water should be a survival priority, as humans can only survive three days without it. Boil water using a filter, iodine pills, or fire. To stay hydrated, filter enough water.

5. Find food. To get protein, lipids, vitamins, and minerals, stock up and eat a varied diet. Forage for edible flowers, roots, and mushrooms, build snares for small game or make fishing gear.

6. Clean well. Food and wounds can introduce bacteria, parasites, and diseases: cleanliness and hygiene lower sickness risk. In addition, staying well is vital because even a few days of bed rest will diminish your odds of survival and swiftly drain your resources.

7. Assess and be calm. Mind is your greatest survival tool. The amygdala of the brain releases stress hormones to activate a fight-or-flight response in life-threatening situations. Stopping to think will help you avoid unnecessary risks and conserve energy until you have a plan. Avoidable mistakes can kill, especially in the woods, so stay calm.

8. Alert nearby rescuers. Mirrors, whistles, and smoke can alert rescuers of your evacuation point. If traveling alone, include a solar cell phone charger in your survival kit.

9. Practice bushcraft beforehand. You may know how to navigate by the North Star or tie a bowline knot, but a preparation drill will test your skills in real-world situations. Knowledge is essential, but practice can help you better.

10. Use everything available. A survivalist must pack light and travel swiftly; thus, they must bring water, food, and multipurpose goods. A stranded backpacker may not have a first aid kit or bug-out bag with the tools and supplies they need to survive. These situations require creativity and problem-solving. For example, a plastic bag, paracord, and duct tape may form a wind and rainproof shelter.

Outdoor activities might be dangerous. Wilderness survival requires food, water, maps, protective clothes, first aid, and mental and physical strength. This material is meant to educate and inform, not replace hard skills.

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