Survival Strategies;bedrolls

Posted: 22/09/2009 in equipment, primitive skills, survival, Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

I’ve made mention before of how important your attitude is towards survival, and that goes for any situation. If you have the right survival mindset, then you’ll be thinking of survival long before you need any of the skills you may be gaining in your search to be self sufficient. And in the long run, self sufficiency is really what survival is all about. Many times I have heard stories about one family making it out of a flooded community, then returning and resuming their lives with little difficulty, and yet the neighbor collapses, can’t do anything and never returns home because they cannot cope with the trauma involved with the flooding they barely survived.

But whether it is a flood, earthquake, wildfire or other disaster that drives you from your home, you can survive, and you can go on with your lives. But you gotta have that old S.A. Survivor Attitude. It doesn’t come easy for some folks, but you can cultivate that attitude, just as you can any other attitude. Some of the ways you can do that is to force yourself to be in situations whereby a minimal amount of resources can be at hand to get you through the day.

Try camping out with just the bare minimum some weekend. Leave the big camper and the ultra plush gear at home. Just use a small tent, a bedroll and a few odds and ends. Cook over that open fire with aluminum foil and a Styrofoam cup. And yes, you can cook in a Styrofoam or paper cup over an open fire. The container will burn down to the level of the liquid in the container, but below that line it will be essentially unaffected, other than getting incredibly hot, so be careful.

One of the old time ways of camping involves the fine art of bed making in the wilderness, and that is just another skill you can develop. You can check out some of the old out of date camping guides for some ideas, but I’ll go over some points here. In the old days, as some like to call ’em, there were no sleeping bags. People would go out in the wild twelve months of the year, but there was no discussion at the outfitters about hi-loft, Holofil and down filling, and what temp the bag is rated for. There were none. Blankets, oilcloth and materials at hand were all you needed to be snug as a bug in a rug.

If you are in a regular campground, you’ll be pretty much forced to use a tent, but if you’re out on your own you can build a temp shelter for the one or two nights you’ll be camping out. Even a rudimentary shelter will help to keep the dew off which will be welcomed by most people. Ever woke up drenched with dew? You can even buy a bedroll today, but we’re looking at survival needs here, and the one I’ll be describing is a quickly made on from easily scrounge materials.

If you do want to make one of your own as a permanent piece of equipment, sail cloth is probably the best material to use for the outside layer. For my purposes here, a cheap 4X6 or 5X8 blue tarp will suffice. These tarps are easily found, and you probably have one or two close by anyways. Lay the tarp out flat, and simply layer the inside blankets, sheets or what have you on top. Put a nice thick twin sized blanket on the bottom, as this one will be acting as a comfort pad as well as an insulating layer between you and the ground.

On top of that, you can either lay another blanket, or place a sheet next, as an inside layer. Fold the sheet over and place another blanket on top of that. you can sew along the outer edges of the blankets to make a bag, but you really don’t need to, and if you are in a survival situation, you probably won’t have the time. Fold over the edges of the tarp and roll up your new bedroll from the bottom up. To save space you can lay out some clothing and maybe some toiletries inside first. You can secure it with some bungees or tape when done.

This isn’t the best that you can do, and sometime I’ll be doing some more complete directions with some illustrations, but this’ll give you an idea of what to do when you’re in a hurry. Check out some of the outfitter catalogs and websites to check out the commercial models to get a better idea of what your end product should look like. Cabelas and The Original Oregon Bedroll are a couple of good places to start off with. Experiment and learn. Develop some skills and an attitude that says you will survive, it’ll help you through the coming times.

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