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Survival 101: Homemade Survival Gear
Planning a long-term trek through one of the many beautiful forests or mountain tops can be a great experience for you and friends.
However, it’s important that you bring a survival bag with you to prepare yourself for the journey.
You can never plan what your trip will bring, but it’s always best to be safe and prepare yourself.
Here’s a quick survival bag 101 lesson:
Purchase a backpack with durability
Everything you need will be placed inside this backpack to make trekking easier.
Find a bag that has several different pockets to help with storage space and giving you organization.
Having one or two pockets will not suffice as a good survival bag.
Avoid poor quality backpacks at all costs.
The last thing you need is your bag to break or rip on you during your travels.
This can lead to a huge setback in plans and cause a miserable trip for yourself.
It’s really essential to try to buy something that will last.
You’re going to need too makeshift a lot during a long term trek.
Not having access to electricity or civilization and the many amenities it comes with, you’ll need to know how to prepare for any situation.
Everything, down to finding your own food and heating source, will be in your hands.
Here are some things you should put in your bag...
Fire and Heating Tools
DIY Fire Starter - this is a great fire starter on the go with convenient products that have multiple uses.
Also, you will want to keep a few packs of waterproof matches.
What You Need
- Cotton balls
- Film container
- Petroleum jelly
1. Soak the cotton balls in the petroleum jelly
2. Place cotton balls inside the film container.
3. Light and, voila, you have fire!
One regular flashlight (if you have a tactical or military flashlight, that would be even better) and one mini flashlight – It is important to have both a regular flashlight and a mini one for any occasion.
The mini flashlight can serve as a backup and used around the campus for dimmer light; the larger flashlight is more heavy duty and brighter and is great for traveling during dusk.
Lantern – Bring a lantern as a fail-safe and for light inside a tent. This isn’t ideal, as they tend to be a bit bulky for what we’re trying to accomplish.
However, there are plenty of options for smaller, lightweight lanterns.
Tarp – If you can fit a tarp with you, it’ll be ideal.
A tarp is perfect for setting up shelter during rough weather and offers added protection and reinforcement.
Learning how to use a tarp will prevent you from having to use a hassling tent that can severely slow you down during your trip.
Tarps also just have a lot of different uses.
You can use them as shelter; you can use them as insulation as well.
Also, if you’re having trouble keeping your pack dry, you can use them to cover and help your gear stay dry.
This is also why it’s important to keep a good survival knife with you in case you need to cut up the tarp to create more suitable insulation, or if you need to chop branches to help create a shelter with your tarp.
DIY Fishing Rod
Catching fish on your trek can be essential, especially if you will be nearby water.
Making a DIY fishing rod can honestly be as simple as a line and a hook.
However, making it the way we will show you below will make it much more comfortable for you, and it’ll be a bit easier.
What You Need
- Sapling branch (easy to bend, but doesn’t break or snap)
- Cordage (try to keep about 500 ft of paracord with you). Also, a bundle of fishing line will work best.
1. Tie the cordage to the tip of branch, ensuring it’s fully secure.
2. Thread the hook to the other end.
You have yourself an easy fishing rod!
Even better, you can toss the branch to make lighter travel and just find a new one when you’re ready to fish again.
There are plenty of things in wilderness you can find for this purpose.
DIY Water Filtration
You’ll want to filter any water you come in contact with to avoid any bacterial or viral infections.
Unclean water can cause dehydration and significant health problems.
This is an absolute no-no while in a survival situation.
You really can’t afford to drink unsanitary water.
It may lead to debilitating health effects that will keep you from covering the ground you need to day to day.
What You Need
- Prescription Bottle
- Water bottle cap
- Cotton ball
1. Drill tiny holes in a water bottle cap. Try to use a sturdy water bottle cap from a better quality bottle. It should look similar to the cap of a salt shaker.
2. Drill a hole the size of your finger through the bottom of a prescription bottle.
3. Place the water bottle cap on the bottom of the prescription bottle.
4. Stuff the bottle 3/4 of the way with a thick piece of cotton.
Whenever you’re ready to use it, just take it out and run the water through the top of the prescription bottle.
It will remove almost all debris, bacteria, and fungus from the water and leave you with safe drinking water.*
This is a super simple mechanism that could really save you in a survival situation.
*You still should use a carbon filter, purification tablets, or bleach to completely purify the water but this will work in a pinch.
When you are trekking, it’s important to have easy DIY survival gear.
You want things you can bring with you and are lightweight that won’t weight you down too heavily.
Also, these skills are important to have just in case you don’t have the gear you need and have to make use of the things around you.
All of these tips are easy to remember and very versatile to any environment of trekking.
It’s important to simplify your trip and condense.
If you can find multiple uses for one item, it can be that much more effective on your journey.
About the Author
Jack Neely is a fitness expert, survivalist, and world traveler. He’s been in several life or death situations, and he’s making an effort to spread his knowledge around the web to help others survive these situations as well. He’s also on the content team at The Tactical Guru.