There’s no greater test than being able to survive in the wild. It’s just you and the great outdoors, along with your tools. Here are some essential items that should be included in any wilderness survival kit.
The ability to navigate is important when surviving in the wilderness. A compass uses a magnetized piece of suspended metal to determine the direction in which the user is facing. In a pinch, a compass can be made with a magnet, needle, cork, and a container of water, but it’s better to have one that has been manufactured, as it will work under any weather condition. It’s even better to have a compass that contains a fluorescent coating or Tritium lights that can illuminate the compass in low light, making it easier to navigate at night.
A compass gives you direction, but you can only go so far with it if you don’t have a map. If you have a particular wilderness area in mind that you want to visit, either print or buy a map of the area beforehand. You can put maps of various wilderness areas in one kit, but keep in mind how much weight and space they may take up. Although a digital map can be downloaded easily to many devices, it’s a good idea to have a printed version on hand. You never know when a device can run out of power, which eliminates access to any downloaded maps.
Survival in the wilderness can only happen if you have the ability to obtain nutrients. While you can pack food, there is always the chance that you can run out, which means that you’ll have to rely on wild items for sustenance. A guide for both poisonous and edible plants is necessary for identifying what you can safely eat and what can harm you. A guide for mushrooms will also be helpful if you happen to visit an area where lots of them are located. Localized guides are the best option, but comprehensive guides for the entire North American region are pretty useful.
Anyone who has spent a significant amount of time in the wilderness knows how important it is to be able to make a fire. Fire makes it possible to cook food, sterilize water, and stay warm during cold nights. With training, anyone can build a fire using raw materials from the wilderness, but it’s better to have a little help from a survival kit. Waterproof matches, a magnesium fire starter, and a lighter are all good quick start options that should be considered for a wilderness survival kit. You want to be able to make a fire out of kindling and wood as quickly as possible while using the least amount of energy, and these options make it possible.
Sharp metal tools should be included in every survival kit. A knife and hatchet are recommended options because they are lightweight and compact, while still being strong enough to cut through material in the wild. Always choose tools with a good rubber grip that won’t slip out of your hands while working. Also make sure that the tools are made from rust resistant steel, as the tools will need to last a long time, and you may be using them to cut wet material, or use them in the rain. A smaller multi tool can be included as a backup option.
When using the items mentioned here, anyone can survive in the wild. Take a chance and see how long you can last in the wilderness.