Questions tagged [survival]

Questions relating to staying alive in the wilderness and learning survival techniques.

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5
votes
1answer
95 views

Diving without modern equipment (mask)

In case you're on the shore, but you have no diving equipment (mask) how can you manage to dive for fish or sea fruits? You don't see any details without a mask and sea water is very irritating to the ...
16
votes
5answers
13k views

How do I catch fish with fish hooks but no bait?

As most survival kits come with fish hooks, I am wondering how do I catch fish without any bait?
-2
votes
0answers
97 views

Help me identify which bug is in my ear? [closed]

Let us examinate which type of bug is living in my ear. Identification seems hard, it can be a type of very small fruit fly, black fly, blowfly, gnatfly or screw fly. I've seen 1mm in size and black ...
68
votes
8answers
5k views

What are essential items in an emergency kit?

What are must-have items in an emergency kit for a multi-day hiking trip?
21
votes
4answers
7k views

Surfacing out of a sunken ship/submarine - Survival Tips

Here is a scary scenario: Let's say you were in a ship or submarine that sunk to the bottom of the ocean. No scuba gear, no oxygen tank, nothing. The depth of the ocean is such that nitrogen ...
84
votes
8answers
28k views

Is it actually useful to ration food?

Is it actually useful to ration food? What is the difference between eating a little bit of food at an interval and eating enough to be full at once? I'm getting the same amount of calories/...
3
votes
2answers
132 views

Water in Tour du Mont Blanc

My friend and I intend to do part of the Tour de Mont Blanc this summer. While we are aware of the refuges and huts, we would prefer to stay in bivouacs for the night (at least one night, but probably ...
29
votes
10answers
5k views

How can you navigate / determine your location in thick fog?

Are there any good hints, tips and ways you can use to navigate around and find your location in thick fog (apart from a GPS)?
30
votes
2answers
4k views

What makes certain mountains more dangerous than others?

Why do mountains like K2, Nanga Parbat and Annapurna (36 successful attempts, 47 failed) have higher fatality rates than, say, Everest or Cho Oyu (79 successful attempts, 28 failed)? (source) Can I ...
0
votes
3answers
644 views

Nails in an emergency/survival kit

After reading this question about emergency kits, I noticed that no one mentioned nails. Why shouldn't we include 10 or 12, common 6d (2", 6 penny) nails in the kit? Ten 6d nails weigh about an ...
1
vote
2answers
95 views

What to look for in learning resources

I've been looking around for good survival/bushcraft books and guides (for general and fundamental knowledge and techniques, I'm quite a newbie with this stuff) and I've seen a lot of conflicting ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

What is the longest dead end road on US public land?

In this answer at; I am lost, I found a trail, which way do I go? It claims ...logging roads These may extend many miles into the forest, with multiple branches, all ending in dead ends. There can ...
51
votes
11answers
18k views

I am lost, I found a trail, which way do I go?

If I am lost in the woods, and I find a trail or a road, how do I decide which way to go? Autumn Veatch was 16 years old in 2015, when her grandparents small plane crashed in the North Cascade ...
21
votes
3answers
11k views

Eating ash in Soviet Union

My Polish grandfather in early 1950's was sent by communist regime to a gulag. People were starving there and malnourishment was common, so they came up with idea of burning some kind of trees and ...
0
votes
1answer
215 views

How do people who don't have a driver's license yet live remotely solve their food/survival needs? [closed]

I never leave the apartment anymore, because the outdoors have become a frightening dystopia. My childhood quarters have been utterly ruined with tasteless buildings and soulless (and dangerous) ...
35
votes
3answers
4k views

If I cross paths with a bear, what should I do?

If I'm out hiking, and I come around a corner and stumble upon a bear, what's the best course of action to take to minimize the chance the bear will act aggressively? Do different types of bear (...
30
votes
6answers
6k views

How do you aim a signal mirror?

Say you are in the middle of a desert where there is lots of sunshine, and you are trying to signal for help with a signal mirror. Either in the distance there is a person, or there is an airplane ...
14
votes
4answers
2k views

How can I desalinate ocean water enough for cleaning or showering?

I'm planning for a long cruise in my small yacht. The water tank in the yacht has enough clean water to drink, but not quite enough for showers, cleaning the dishes etc.. Desalinating ocean water ...
3
votes
2answers
308 views

Best places in Europe to practice wilderness camping skills without much tourism?

What would be the most suitable places in Europe where I could venture with some friends on a backpacking trip where we could sleep in tents for about a week and practice camping skills, without much ...
3
votes
1answer
277 views

Any forests in Europe where a group of people could survive as hunter-gatherers?

Are there any larger "wild" forested areas left in continental Europe, where a group of people could (in theory) sustainably live as hunter-gatherers? Looking at maps of forested areas, I ...
13
votes
3answers
1k views

Does anyone have an account of someone using a survival tin in a survival situation

I have read several books about survival and outdoor field craft skills. Many of these books suggest building a survival kit out of an Altoids tin or something similar. These kits include very basic ...
11
votes
3answers
2k views

Calculating time until sunset

Is there a relatively reliable way of calculating the time until sunset, without any specialist equipment, when I'm in the wilderness?
5
votes
1answer
168 views

How long can one starve before refeeding syndrome becomes an issue?

Refeeding syndrome is a potentially fatal condition caused by eating too much or too fast after a period of starvation. My question is, how long of a period are we talking about?
5
votes
4answers
322 views

How am I supposed to remember if I'm supposed to "play dead" or "make myself appear big" for various dangerous wild animals?

I've countless times heard things like this when they give tips for how to act when encountering a bear in the wild: Play dead! Lie down and don't move an inch! And (for all animals): Don't run! It ...
5
votes
2answers
262 views

I am torn between axe or hatchet, what would you recommend?

I was reading this article on axe or hatchet for camping and I am thinking on bringing a hatchet in my next trip.
14
votes
18answers
94k views

What are good baits for crabbing?

Now certainly if you're British you likely just had a wave of nostalgia over the idea of Crabbing! I did when I thought this through certainly. Crabbing is not only a great way to spend the afternoon ...
10
votes
4answers
29k views

How to measure the temperature without a thermometer?

We are in the wild and need to know how cold/hot it is. How can we measure the temperature if we don't have any thermometers? Can we build something similar, etc.? It doesn't have to be necessarily ...
1
vote
2answers
147 views

How to Maximize Survival Stranded on a Snowy Mountain

I'm looking for survival information similar to what happened to the rugby team in Miracle in the Andes. If a plane crashed on a similar rural mountain range during the winter, what are the important ...
3
votes
1answer
263 views

What do I do if I see a murder hornet outside?

I heard about a nasty stinging invasive insect. I originally searched for "murder wasp" and found an exotic insect that was frightening but mostly harmless and then started reading up on "murder ...
7
votes
1answer
3k views

How can I make an obsidian knife?

I have some obsidian and I know that it can be made into knives and other sharp objects such as arrowheads. Historically this was done for a long time in the United States before there were steel ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

What is the most methodical way to try to get yourself unlost? (Assume below timberline in a temperate climate)

My question is prompted by the answer of @Aaron to this question; his answer referenced Geraldine's Largay's death on the Appalachian Trail. Ms. Largay was hiking alone on the AT in Maine. She got ...
38
votes
8answers
13k views

Jumping off of a cliff into water - survival tips

Another scary scenario: Let's say you're in a situation where you have to jump off of a cliff into the water to survive. The cliff is at least 100 feet high. What would be the best way to survive ...
49
votes
10answers
5k views

How can you navigate without a compass or GPS

What are the ways you can navigate when you don't have a compass or a GPS? For example how can you tell which way is north.
60
votes
12answers
37k views

Is it warmer to sleep in a car or in a tent?

Is it warmer to sleep in a car or in a tent? Suppose that our old internal-combustion-engine car breaks down in a remote place at -30°C, -40°C, or -50°C, and the engine won't run at all. Suppose we'...
57
votes
4answers
193k views

How long does water need to be boiled for to kill all bacteria / viruses?

This has come up a few times in a few other questions, but I've heard varying opinions from different people in a number of answers and comments on here - some saying that just boiling for a moment is ...
10
votes
5answers
337 views

Water preparation on desert hiking

I have heard that if you drink a lot of water as a habit, the body doesn't do much retention. Therefore, if you are preparing for a hiking in the desert where not much water will be available, is ...
11
votes
3answers
2k views

Can any automotive fluids be made safe to drink?

My vehicle has broken down in the middle of a desert, I have some tools but I am out of water. I have the ability to make a fire. I know that drinking antifreeze is fatal, but I am wondering if I ...
3
votes
2answers
339 views

What signs can I use to navigate a cave if lost?

I'm working on a story where a character gets trapped in a cave but use his knowledge as a weatherman to navigate and escape! Are the any weather-related clues you could use to escape a cave ...
20
votes
2answers
19k views

How to react to an aggressive boar

As far as I know, boars are pretty aggressive when they have piglets. In the appropriate season, one might happen to hike into the path of an overprotective mother and get attacked. How do I react ...
1
vote
2answers
144 views

What materials from nature can you use to build a pair of skis on a mountain?

I'm working on a survival story and want to make it authentic. If you were stranded on a mountain trying to get down as fast as possible, what would you do? EDIT: What if this was after a plane crash ...
0
votes
1answer
1k views

Is there a portable fluoride water filter?

Is there a portable water filter product (for backpacking), like the following two... MSR AutoFlow Gravity Filter by MSR, which seems to filter relatively large volumes of water (~4 Liters) quickly (~...
23
votes
3answers
11k views

Can you boil/decontaminate water with heat from a magnifying glass?

A bit hypothetical, but ruling out being able to use a solar still, or the SODIS method, could you make water drinkable by using the suns heat through a magnifying glass? Paper self ignites at 451° F ...
14
votes
3answers
3k views

How real is the danger of suffocation in an Igloo?

Last weekend I spent a night in an igloo. The event was organised by professionals (it was a company retreat) and during the night there was always one of the guides awake making rounds and checking ...
3
votes
2answers
11k views

In an emergency situation, is it healthy to eat human flesh?

We all know these scary stories where people had to eat their fellow sufferers after a plane crash or something. I don't know if there is even one of them true. I feel like it might result into more ...
12
votes
2answers
1k views

Is "survival" paracord with fire starter strand dangerous

There are a number of "survival" products on the market that integrate "extra" strands into the standard paracord (US MIL spec, ~4mm accessory cord, usually 7 strand nylon or cotton) Most of them ...
9
votes
5answers
3k views

Transition to "Starvation Mode" in Survival Situations

The textbook "Fundamentals of Search and Rescue" in Chapter 6 describes the priorities of needs in survival situations. The priorities listed are Air Shelter Rest Signals/Communication Water Food ...
18
votes
2answers
2k views

What formation to best survive a flood?

I just heard of an incident where a group of people were caught unprepared by a flood. It is known as the "Bulacan State University Field Trip", Looking at the images online, I couldn't help but ...
97
votes
14answers
41k views

My car broke down in Siberia. What do I do now?

Some time ago, while driving on a snowy road, someone told me a kind of horror story. It involved a guy who was driving alone with an old car on an overland road in Siberia during winter, so the ...
4
votes
1answer
378 views

If you are stranded at sea with a basic set of fishing equipment, how reliable of a food supply are fish?

We have a question about desalinating water while stranded at sea, and another that asks if you can get desalinated water from eating fish. However, even if you could get desalinated water from fish ...
3
votes
3answers
686 views

How to escape a cave in an emergency situation?

I have been doing a lot of cave climbing recently. So I am not talking about your average tourist cave, I talk about real miles deep labyrinth like caves, where nature never thought of humans getting ...

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