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For families who spend a lot of time in the outdoors, having a child wander off and get lost is pretty unlikely. This is perhaps the hardest and most important wilderness survival skill to develop, especially if you’re a kid. Talk to your child about how easy it will be to have a meltdown when they realize they’re lost.
Water is the most important survival item you can have, it’s also a hard one for little kids, which is why I always stock my kid’s packs with plenty of water and tell them to ration it if they become lost.
The problem is, unless you find yourself lost next to a water source you shouldn’t exactly wander off looking for water and get even more lost. Next to having enough water, finding a shelter to protect you from the elements (either cold or hot weather) should be top priority. If you hear a plane or helicopter get into an opening and run around and yell like a crazy person. I would image that the #1 concern for a lost child is the prospect of being eaten by a wild animal. I have a large garbage bag in my kids backpacks because it provides extra warmth and can prevent the core from getting wet which can cause hypothermia.
Statistically, you have an 80%-85% chance of being rescued within 72 hours here in the lower 48. Because you can’t count on others for your safety and security, I recommend seeking formal survival training and carrying a basic survival kit that has been cleverly thought out and stocked with practical components. Fire is a simple chemical reaction called oxidation in which the oxygen in the atmosphere reacts with the molecules of a substance to produce energy in the form of heat and light.
Jerry Ward is the owner and operator of Ozark Mountain Preparedness, LLC located in Berryville, Arkansas.
Blogging about all things survival and emergency preparedness, including experiences with DIY projects and ideas, gear reviews, living frugally, cooking in unconventional ways, and more!
I’m excited that the publisher has offered a full set for me to give away so a lucky winner! Produced by Waterford Press in collaboration with master woodsman and survivalist Dave Canterbury, these guides are packed with good info to get your tail out of a jam. Actually this one is for the Pathfinder Outdoor Survival Guides… Sorry for the typo in Rafflecopter!
I am a Salt Lake City based freelance writer specializing in travel, food and adventure sports. The content of The Active Explorer, and any resources published by The Active Explorer, are meant for entertainment and inspiration only. This 2-day course offers a great introduction to wilderness survival for all outdoor enthusiasts and covers all basic skills you need to know to survive in the back country. Every year people who venture into the vast northern wilderness for recreation or work get into trouble.
During this course we will discuss strategies for survival and you will learn how to assemble your survival kit, how to build an emergency shelter by using tarps as well as all natural material, how to construct and ignite various types of fire for cooking, warmth and signaling, which plants can be used for emergency foods, how to hunt, trap and fish animals for food, where to find water and how to treat it for safe drinking, how to signal for help, how to navigate using the sun and stars. The endless wilderness and untouched nature of the Yukon Territory offer a spectacular setting for our course program and a perfect training area for every bushcraft and survival fans! We do not simulate an emergency situation in this workshop, but will set up a wilderness camp and learn new skills and techniques in a relaxed atmosphere.
We will custom imprint these Outdoor Survival Tools with your logo, text, or custom artwork! But for young kids you really can only pack what they know how and are developmentally able to use. Attach a whistle to your kids backpack, as soon as they realize they have become separated from the group tell them to start blowing that whistle like crazy. Your body can still function with little or no food for weeks, but it can only last a few days without water.


However, if it has been a day or two and you’re still lost and out of water, it’s going to be worth it to wander off and try to find some. Take a look, pick out the animals that live in your area and go over basic information with your kids.
Maybe also if they have to venture out in search of water, that they know how to mark their trail to show where they left and which way they went.
The phrase conjures up visions of plane crashes in the deserts of Africa, shipwrecks in the South Pacific, tragic miscalculations of direction in the South America rainforest, and expeditions gone wrong in the Arctic. The two major factors of contributing to those numbers are the invention of the helicopter and the cell phone. Fire requires three components to begin and sustain that reaction; an initial heat source, fuel, and oxygen.
The human body can make it for around 30 days without nourishment, but why be hungry when you avoid it. He has been teaching survival skills since 2004 and opened Ozark Mountain Preparedness in 2010. Take a tour to better understand the many tools and resources you can find here as well as what to expect in the future.
Originally, from Palo Alto, California, I sailed the South Pacific and Caribbean as a child and continue to travel extensively throughout North America and Mexico. In this hands-on course you will learn how to act if you find yourself in an emergency situation. This is the ideal entry level course for all outdoor enthusiasts, who do not just want to depend on their luck in cases of emergencies. This handy tool includes dry compass, whistle, magnifier, thermometer, signal mirror, spark striker and storage area. While unlikely, I think your child would be a little more at ease if they knew what to do when they encountered a wild animal. The point is not to make them even more freaked out, just to give them some confidence in their skills should they spend a night in the woods alone.
The outdoors is infused into everything we do; which explains why I'm better at mud pies than home decorating. While these situations are all found in the annals of history and plausible, the bulk of survival situations befall folks in less exotic locales under less glamorous circumstances. The helicopter came into its prime during the Vietnam War where it was used heavily as a platform to extract and evacuate wounded military personnel.
I’ll save the deeper explanation for a future article, but basically when all three of these components are in the right mixture you have a fire. That being said, being able to find water and render it safe is a definite need in the kit. Before becoming a full-time survival skills instructor he worked as a rock climbing guide, wildland firefighter and gunsmith. When not at her desk writing, she can be found backpacking, rappelling into a cave, or playing somewhere in the Wasatch canyons. In addition to travel, my passions include fitness, unique local cuisines, strong coffee and wine.
Most wilderness emergencies will get solved within 72 hours, We will show you how to survive those first critical days until search & rescue teams arrive. As they get older you can add more and more items (like fire starting supplies) and teach them how to use them. Pilots and Search and Rescue (SAR) units here in the civilian world realized there was a place for that same mobility and speed during SAR operations. A decreased energy level will manifest itself as a decrease in work around camp; which could lead to your demise. Raised by nomadic parents, she sailed the South Pacific and Caribbean as a child and continues wandering to this day.


So I’ve been thinking about what skills would be appropriate to start learning for the average 6-11 year old, before they are of age for hardcore Boy Scout techniques. Plan.) is a great place to start, and is a helpful tool for kids when it comes time to remembering what they should do.
If your child is old enough to make one, it might be fun to practice out on the trail, or in your backyard. Cellular phones, love them or hate them, have also led to the advancement of rapid rescue these last few decades.
It provides a way to purify water and cook food, is an instant signal from the flame and smoke, is a tool to process wood and create containers, provides light at night, helps to maintain core body temperature, and is a companion requiring interaction and providing feedback.
There is also precipitation, transpiration, condensation, sub-surface water pooling and the like. These events can turn a simple afternoon of recreation into a potentially life threatening situation. The “smart” phones of today can not only be used as a communication device in order to activate SAR, but also as a navigational tool capable of providing rescuers the exact location of the party needing help. I recommend my students carry a minimum of three ways to make fire in their kits and on their person.
His outdoor pursuits have taken him all around the United States and abroad, including fur trapping in Alaska, fighting wildfire in the American West, researching primitive cultures in the Desert Southwest, trekking the rainforests of Belize, and exploring the Highlands of Scotland.
Hopefully Joe and Jane have had some professional survival training and have with them a kit to help them deal with the priorities of survival. The methods I prefer are the ferro rod, flint and steel kit, and a Bic lighter with a piece of bicycle inner tube wrapped around it. He has been featured in numerous publications, including Currents and American Survival Guide magazines. Toss in a waterproof container with a half dozen petroleum jelly covered cotton balls and you can be sure of a fire in almost all conditions!
Also, a little training in primitive trapping techniques and wild edible plants will increase your chances of survival should the situation go from short-term to Robinson Crusoe. Jerry is a member of The Wilderness Medical Society and The Society of Primitive Technology. The first is some sort of chemical treatment that will kill the microbes swimming around in the drink.
Cell phones in particular are prone to all sorts of mishaps; loss of power, little or no coverage, a dunk in the creek, breakage due to a fall, and loss.
Unscented chlorine bleach and 2% tincture of iodine from the pharmacy are the two I prefer.
They are nice to have on station and fun to play with, but not something to count on when the chips are down.
Add two drops per quart of either the chlorine bleach or 2% iodine tincture, shake thoroughly, and wait 30 minutes before drinking. The Lifestraw is a straw you simply place down into the contaminated water source and drink through just like a soda straw.
When you are finished, simply blow through the straw to remove the excess water, close the caps on each end, and toss back in your gear. Boiling is always an option, so be sure to include a stainless steel container to place in your fire.



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