Survival Gear and Equipment
A lot of people often ask ‘What is the best survival gear?’. Unfortunately I don’t have a quick and easy answer for them. The thing about this question is that there is no one set of equipment that is going to be best in every single situation because it’s so dependent on the conditions you will be living in and also for how long you intend to spend there. For example, if you’re going to the Arctic for three months your equipment is going to be wildly different to if you are spending one week in the Amazon rainforest! For this reason it is extremely important to know where you will be going,? What you will be doing, and therefore to have a plan for all of it before you go! This is probably my best advice.
Having said this, however, certain survival gear is better than others in general, and of course it is always a good plan to have a few key pieces of equipment with you always!
Your tools can often mean the difference between life and death if you were ever in a truly disastrous situation. Without them there is little you can do (without truly expert knowledge at your disposal) because it is likely that you will not be able to maintain a steady direction if traveling, build a sturdy shelter at night or find good sources of nutrition.
Depending on what area you are in, you may want to bring some kind of animal deterrent, whether it be bear spray, or any kind of pepper spray to ward off dangerous animals.
A good compass is essential when surviving in the great outdoors. Without it is much harder to find your bearing and stick to a specific direction of travel. We’ve all heard those stories of people lost in the wilderness without a compass, thinking that they are walking in a straight line only to come back across their own tracks or return to the same place. Don’t let this be you! A simple wrist compass with do.
Take a look here for the best military watch money can buy. This is a crucial item to have on you.
A great asset to have when surviving the outdoors. The variety and range of tools that it comes with from pliers, serrated knife, screw driver, file, scissors all make it extremely valuable, especially for its weight. Find one you like and take it with you everywhere, you don’t even need to be in the wilderness – these tools come in handy often for your normal day to day activities!
Knives are great assets to have in the outdoors because they enable you to do so much more than would have been possible without it. For example, sharpening sticks for hunting, gutting animals or creating shavings from food for fires. The list is practically endless, but without one you could be in for a bad trip.
Survival machetes designed for clearing brush or chopping wood are must haves.
A must-have for outdoors survival. You never know when it will be needed!
Usually in the form of tablets these can save you from getting very ill in some instances. Depending on your environment it might be safe to drink from a local water source, but if you are unsure or know that that’s not the case then chemically purified water will save you from losing precious energy and other resources if you were to get ill. Cheap and light, no excuses! Make sure you have enough for your entire trip plus more.
Fire starting equipment
Our favorite way to keep warm and cook our delicious hand-caught food is by the fire. However, there aren’t any newsagents selling lighters in the wilderness meaning you are going to have to bring something similar yourself! Our favorite type is a fire striker which allows you to create sparks in pretty much any conditions, even if it’s wet or windy. These things last for ages and are easy to pack.
If you are genuinely stranded in a foreign location then a signaling device will often be your way to salvation! It’s as easy as carrying a signaling mirror, but could equally be flares or a smoke device. Do not leave home without one
Food procurement items
Depending on where you are heading you will want to bring suitable equipment. Good ideas are fish hooks and line, rabbit snares and a book detailing trapping methods.
Camping and shelter
Having adequate shelter is paramount when you are in the wilderness. Without it there is a high likelihood that you will get ill quickly, perhaps due to hypothermia after getting wet during the night and not being able to get dry. Whatever your conditions you should have shelter!
One way to achieve this is to bring a tent with you. However, they can take up a lot of precious room and can also weight a lot. Instead we recommend bringing a waterproof tarpaulin with you and then using your surroundings to make a dry and warm environment for sleeping and resting.
However, don’t worry if you can’t even afford to bring that because it is equally possible to make shelter out of what you will have around you during the expedition. Our recommended course of action is to inform yourself of common structures that you can build in the setting you will be. Alternatively, take a fully comprehensive book on the subject!
So what are you going to carry all of your stuff in? A backpack is an extremely useful and important piece of survival gear. Without it there is no way you can take with you all the necessary items. The most important features of a backpack are that it must be comfortable and waterproof. If either of these values is disregarded it can make your trip hell, from wet clothes to aching back pain, neither are pleasant!
First aid items
If something bad does happen and you require medical attention then first aid items really can save lives. You can buy kits, but they tend to be expensive, so instead we recommend buying the individual items. Here are the main ones we believe you should always have at your disposal:
- Pain relief (ibuprofen / paracetamol)
- Bandages and medical adhesive tape
- Antibacterial ointment
- Antihistamine for allergies
- Antiseptic wipes
- Comprehensive first-aid manual
- Blister bandages
These are all survival necessities and should be included in your equipment. There are many more but a lot of them are dependent on your situation (such as insect repellant / bite treatment) so plan ahead!