7 Essential Skills for Staying Alive in the Wild

7 Essential Skills for Staying Alive in the Wild

Decades-long Air Force man Rod Alne gives 7 tips for surviving in the wild.

He starts out with building a smarter survival kit. A three-tier system. First, on your body, 30-50 feet of 550 paracord braided into a lanyard with a signaling device (whistle, etc) attached.

Also carry a firestarter (bic or other), a small button compass, flashlight, and knife, a space blanket, a signal mirror, multi-purpose tool, and a cellphone.

With those, you can call for help, build a shelter, and start a fire. If you’re near water, you might want to carry a couple fish-hooks or a net as well.

Tier two.

In a small backpack/fannypack. It should have a first aid kit, surveyors tape (brightly colored), raingear, 55-gal contractor bag, duct tape, candy bars, granola bars.

Tier three.

Backpack. It should contain some things to build shelter. You could go with a tarp, sleeping bag (the small kind), MRE or other sustenance, water container (that can be boiled ie metal), fixed knife blade/saw/axe, and some clothing that will be suited to the environment.

After that, Alne explains that you can increase your chances by learning a few skills.

Splint a break/sprain. You may bring a samsplint or other for this.

Build a shelter fast. This includes knowing how to pick a site that has drainage (isn’t in drainage) and isn’t too elevated (to stay out of the cold wind). You need to aim to stay at 98.6 degrees. You can use fire to get to that temperature.

Build fire in rain, damp and snow.

Get located and found. This can be with a whistle, but if you’re lost, you probably need a ground-to-air signal. CLASS. Remember that word. Contrast, location, angles, size, and shape. A mirror can do it. The smell of smoke can too.

Find your way home. GPS is great, but when it dies, you need something else. Also, if you like most people don’t have the money for a GPS, you need to learn to rely on more reliable methods. Learn the watch method or the sundial method to find direction. There’s also the moss-on-tree method, but it’s not as reliable.

His last of seven tips: develop a survivors mindset. That is what will really get you out of a situation.

Roman Ridgeline King single Dome Canvas Swag

When it comes to durability, those synthetics might not cut it. Sparks from a fire, strong winds with twigs whipping around, dropping it down a rock face. Canvas, though. I have canvas bags that are 50 years old I think.

The specs for this single dome canvas swag:

• 200 x 90 x 50cm• Zip off top cover and large sandfly proof mesh top section with entry on both sides

• Zip out canvas at head end.

• Sandfly proof mesh at head end.• Reflective webbing on hoop clips.

• Reflective loops on all four corners for easy peg down.

• Heavy duty 38mm straps with quick release buckles and carry handle.

• Accessories pocket sewn onto base for storage of hopps, pegs & ropes supplied with Swag.

This Killer Tent Weighs Almost Nothing and Fits In Your Nalgene Bottle

A lightweight tent is great, and we’re always trying to find the lightest, most compact solution when we’re hiking or motorbiking, right? This one fits inside a nalgene bottle.

From the manufacturer: “Ultralight Adventurists will appreciate the Specialist™ shelters: the interior space and comfort of a tent with a lower overall weight and more compact size than many bivis.

“They are the lightest fully enclosable shelters in their class. Seam sealed throughout, the Specialists™ offer superior waterproof properties while also maintaining impressive breathability to manage condensation effectively.”


Size Variation: Duo
Weight 29 oz (total) / 22.3 (oz shelter) 5.1 oz (poles) / 2.3 oz (pegs)/846g (total) / 633g shelter) 146g (poles) / 67g (pegs)
Volume 23 sq ft / 2.14m2 (floor area) – 8.2 sq ft / .76m2 (vestibule area)


Ultra-light weight
The Solo has one entrance and one vestibule. The Duo has two entrances and two vestibules
Pertex ® Endurance 20D nylon shell fabric that has a 1,000mm waterhead and a 7000MVTR (Moisture Vapor Transmission Rate)
15D waterproof nylon walls, vestibule & floor has a 1,200mm waterhead
Double stitched and bar tacked at all stress points for strength and endurance
Fully tape seam sealed and reflective guy lines
Includes 2 x 7075 alloy poles and 6 x hard anodized 7075 alloy pegs
Can be pitched with a pair of trekking poles and natural anchors for extra weight savings
Ultra-fine mesh panel doors
Internal storage pocket not offered on many lightweight shelters
Optional lightweight Tyvek® ground sheets