Skills to Know Ahead of Time

Discussion in 'Newbie Corner' started by evergreen, May 19, 2016.

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  1. evergreen

    evergreen Member
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    For newbies, what advice on skills to know in advance to survive should disaster strike? Would it be helpful to know basic sewing skills, knitting, or crafting certain items or how to make a fire? These seem like "givens" but not necessarily something that every person is going to spend their spare time doing. If you had to make a list of skills someone should know what would it be?
     
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  2. BigD

    BigD New Member
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    If you ever get truly lost, it seems like some sort of navigation skills would be of help. In the Northern Hemisphere, the North Star is the first star in the handle of the Little Dipper.

    Also, the US Forest service also has a list of basic instructions for what to do when lost. It basically boils down to knowing how to generate some sort of signal, then hunkering down. I know burning live plants generates more smoke, which is good for signals.

    You can also access the first Boy Scouts manual through Project Gutenberg online for free. It has tons of great rudimentary survival guides written in a way that's easy to understand. It tells you ways to build shelter, tie knots, do first aid, etc. I recommend beginners check it out.
     
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  3. evergreen

    evergreen Member
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    That's a great idea on the Boy Scout's manual! I remember the girl scout one from when I was in, but I don't recall a lot of woodsy type survival stuff. I think they left that up to the boys. I mean, my badges were in "baking" "cooking" and my fave (sarcasm) "hair braiding". I will go look for that! I'm sure dad can also get some of the old paper manuals on his antique adventures.
     
  4. acheno84

    acheno84 Member
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    I have been taught how to knit and braid, which I think would definitely come in handy in the event that I need to use supplies to make ropes of my own. This may sound cheesy, but I have been an avid watcher of the show "Naked and Afraid" and have actually learned a lot there. While there is someone there to monitor the well being of the cast, they still have to endure a lot. I think it's crucial to learn how to use materials such as mud to deflect bugs; live, green plants to create thick smoke; and of course stones and sticks to make a fire. I like BigD's suggestion of checking out the Boy Scout's manual as well. I never really thought about that.
     
  5. JThePoster

    JThePoster New Member
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    Definitely making a fire would be one of them. I mean, fire provides me with heat, something to cook my food with, and water purification. Thats pretty essential to survival. I think another important skill is finding food and identifying what is poisonous and what isn't. If you can find a good source of food and water, you're all set for survival.
     
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  6. QtheMyst

    QtheMyst Member
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    @BigD great tips about navigation. I'm trying to learn this now myself, I've always been pretty unskilled in this department. I never was in girl scouts, but I really wish I had learned some of that stuff as a kid.

    I think learning to scout out the edible plants in different areas would be one of the most useful skills, in addition to building a fire. I think there are some places where it's really important to learn how to find a natural source of water also.
     
  7. Tom Williams

    Tom Williams Moderator Staff Member
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    Fire makeing first aid use of compass and how to use and read topo map water and food common sense do not panic
     
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  8. lonewolf

    lonewolf Legendary Survivalist Staff Member
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    the basics to start with, butchery(of small animals), cooking, fire making, first aid, navigation.
     
  9. terryse

    terryse Member
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    If I were to recommend anyone what to do in times of crisis, it is how to get collected and calm so you could respond accordingly to a given event. As an example, if someone in your group of friends or a member in the family, suffered a coronary or a stroke, one person might run screaming into the street without communicating with anyone or might crumple into fear, too paralyzed to act. Another calmer person would handle it in a totally opposite manner, thinking, "Well, it looks like a stroke. What can I do? First I'll call the doctor." Obviously, the latter response is the one to be expected from a truly normal person.
     
  10. Cara

    Cara New Member
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    I think it would be very helpful to know how find or make shelter, tell with direction is which, know how to find water, and know how to start a fire. Given on the situation knowledge of these things would go along way. Warmth, staying hydrated and having shelter from the elements are the immediate necessary.
     
  11. meganisonfire

    meganisonfire New Member
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    I think that there are some basic skills that everyone needs to know to survive especially if you are out there on your own. You would need to know how to find the materials for fire and shelter. You would also need to know how to make the fire and build the shelter! You would need to know how to make your weapons and find your food. You would need to know what plants you can eat and how to clean/prepare your food. Also you would need to know how to get good water and keep good hygiene. There are a lot of things that you need to know for excellent survival. I know very few of these and am learning something new every day!
     
  12. Keith H.

    Keith H. Moderator Staff Member
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    This is a basic list of skills that we expect our group members to have some knowledge of & experience with. We take what we do seriously, any one of us at any time may need to depend on another member for our well being & survival. We are primarily an 18th century living history group involved in Historical Trekking, but we are also a survival group. IF at any time it all hits the fan, then we will all come together at a certain place to survive, & we will be depending on our historical equipment & skills to carry us through long term.
    Keith.

    Woodsrunner’s Skills.

    New England Colonial Living History Group 1680-1760.

    This is a list of basic skills in which we expect an 18th century woodsman or woods-woman to have some experience with in our group. There is no time limit set, learn in your own time & if we can help just ask.
    Keith.


    · Flint & steel fire lighting

    · Wet weather fire lighting

    · Fire-bow fire lighting

    · Flintlock fire lighting

    · Flintlock use, service & repair

    · Marksmanship with either gun or bow.

    · Field dressing & butchering game

    · Blade sharpening

    · Tomahawk throwing

    · Making rawhide

    · Brain tanning

    · Primitive shelter construction

    · How to stay warm in winter with only one blanket

    · Cordage manufacture

    · Moccasin construction and repair

    · Sewing

    · Axe and tomahawk helve making

    · Fishing

    · Hunting

    · Evasion

    · Tracking

    · Reading sign

    · Woods lore

    · Navigation

    · Primitive trap construction & trapping

    · Open fire cooking

    · Fireplace construction

    · Clothing manufacture

    · Drying meat & other foods

    · Knowledge of plant tinders & preparation

    · Knowledge of native foods & preparation

    · Knowledge of native plants in the area and their uses for other than tinder and food.

    · Scouting/Ranging.

    · Basic first aid.

    · Finding and treating water.

    · General leather work.

    Keith.
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2017
  13. crmeche2

    crmeche2 New Member
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    Above all else, I would say there are four must know skills that you need to start with, and then you build from there. These are : air, shelter, water, and food. You can go without many things, but you can't go without air, shelter, water, and food. Remember the Rule of 3's: you can go 3 minutes without air, you can go 3 hours without shelter, you can go 3 days without water, and you can go 3 weeks without food.
     
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  14. lonewolf

    lonewolf Legendary Survivalist Staff Member
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    if there is no air we are all dead, so that's a non starter.
     
  15. crmeche2

    crmeche2 New Member
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    I agree with you there, lonewolf, but I also think that it's smart to learn about the quality of air that we take in and how to improve that quality when trying to survive. It's more about, for me, taking in good area and filtering out things that contaminate the air. That kind of information is not something random people know or even think about.
     
  16. lonewolf

    lonewolf Legendary Survivalist Staff Member
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    I live in a rural area, well away from any commercial buildings.
     
  17. Arkane

    Arkane Master Survivalist
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    Air quality is important!
    IF bombs and fires have been happening or major vulcanism etc there will be lots of contaminents literally floating around!
    maybe not enough to make you feel sick in the short term but breathing toxic air for weeks on end will damage health!
    During WWII lots of people died from breathing toxic smoke after bombing raids, lost a few relatives in London from smoke inhalation!
    they survived the blitz but after a few close calls and a few months later suffered lung failure, they just had trouble breathing and were sent
    to the country with relatives to recover but just lingered in agony for months then just expired, grandma cared for then and said it was horrible to watch!
    Over here we have a lot of bushfire volunteers suffer lung problems!
     
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  18. lonewolf

    lonewolf Legendary Survivalist Staff Member
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    only be a problem here if a lot of house fires, if it gets anywhere near that stage i'm out of here.
     
  19. Sealpikachu

    Sealpikachu Member
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    Getting warm and shelter seem to be the most important in my opinion. After that, being able to make food and defend yourself as well. Sewing would come in really handy to on the long run.
     
  20. lonewolf

    lonewolf Legendary Survivalist Staff Member
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    shelter, warmth, water and food in that order.
     
  21. Tom Williams

    Tom Williams Moderator Staff Member
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    Two other thing to factor into this where are you going andd how are you getting there have this ready NOW will make it easy to go Go now and start getting it ready now
     
  22. cluckeyo

    cluckeyo Well-Known Member
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    Anything having to do with self-reliance would be good to focus on. It's a good thing to have no matter what your situation. You can never fully prepare for disaster because disasters aren't ordered to specs. But if you can be mentally ready and always self-reliant, then that will guide you, and you will have a better chance to fare well in times of crisis.
     
  23. judyd1

    judyd1 New Member
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    As a person who lived homeless for 2 weeks at a low point in my life, I found out the most important things are: food, water and shelter. We actually slept in the car for 2 weeks. Preparing food was a problem, so it's important to have food that is portable and needs a minimum of preparation. Water jugs can be refilled. Learn how to clean up after yourself to not attract animals or other unwanted critters. Know where to find local resources. Be aware.
     
  24. tb65

    tb65 Active Member
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    I think the first things you have to learn is how to get food water and shelter. Fire is important but you have to protect yourself from the elements.
    You need food and water to stay alive but water is the most important. If you're with other people you have to know how to work as a team because internal conflict is the last thing any one needs. Being optimistic under pressure is a must because if you let things get to you easily your chance of survival will decrease.
     
  25. Corzhens

    Corzhens Master Survivalist
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    From the top of my head, hmm, let me think of what a newbie should know in time of a disaster. First in the list is the search for a safe shelter, be it an earthquake or a typhoon or maybe a war, we really cannot say, but still a search for a safe place is the first impulse. That done, you have to survey the fields for further safety precautions. Since the situation is undefined, I will leave it at that. Third step is the search for water and food source. Clean water for drinking would not be much of a problem if the disaster is a typhoon since there is rainwater. But in a severe drought, I think even water wells go dry so that should be a cause for alarm. As hunters would tell you, anything that moves can be food - that excludes humans, naturally - insects or animals only. And when nothing moves then you have to focus on the vegetation.
     
  26. Moroccanbeauty2266

    Moroccanbeauty2266 Active Member
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    I think growing my own fruits and vegetables would be a good step in terms of preparation.
    Maybe learning how to make a fire and to build a firm shelter from branches and wood that is close by would belong to the skills I would need to aquire.
    Learning about the eatable and non-eatable plants would be very smart so you know what to do.
    And definitely pass on these skills to my children just in case something happens to me then they are prepared.
     
  27. lonewolf

    lonewolf Legendary Survivalist Staff Member
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    you need the basics to stay alive: food, water, shelter, fire- get those covered first before you worry about anything else.
    learn to be self reliant . its up to YOU to look out for your personal survival, it is NOT someone else's job, this is the bottom line. or as they say in America: "the buck stops here!"
     
  28. OursIsTheFury

    OursIsTheFury Expert Member
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    I think navigation is a big key here. Knowing where your position is using the stars, the sun, even bird flight pattern, would extremely be helpful in the event that you get lost in the wilderness. Knowing what you need to do to survive is one thing, but you also need to learn how to naturally find your way when you get lost in the wilderness. I think that's the most general thing you need to learn, because you can always eat fruits in the wilderness, you can always spot streams, but if you don't know or even have bit of clue which direction you are going, you might just end up running in circles instead of trying to leave the area.
     
  29. Tshaka

    Tshaka New Member
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    Land navigation, map reading, how to prepare a fire, hunting, and hand to hand combat.
     
  30. Prairie Dog

    Prairie Dog Expert Member
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    Given foresight, this could be quite a list. I live in Canada where it gets cold for 4-7 months of the year, so I will throw this out there for others to reflect on and refine. Please feel free to comment on improvements or suggestions.
    Shelter: learn how to build a shelter that is "relatively" weather proof in minutes. If you find yourself unexpectedly on the move without equipment, it could make a huge difference. Once you feel that is covered look into how to construct longer term shelter. Your home or "base" will be huge for psychological and practical reasons but needs to suit your environment.
    Water / food Research what options are good solutions for clean, secure water sources for your local (or where you intend to bail out to). Have a means to transport it and store it. Read up on local plants that are safe and actually try them. What is tastey to some isn't to others. Then turn your attention to locally available game. Learn how to hunt and trap them, prepare them for the table and store them safely.
    Medical/first aid Take a good course, build a good kit and make sure you keep it safe.
    That would give you a good start and a lot of things for someone to work on. As you go, you will identify other needs particular to where you are or personal needs as well.
     
  31. sarky

    sarky Expert Member
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    I am surprised that trapping and snaring aren't on the list
     
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  32. Keith H.

    Keith H. Moderator Staff Member
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    They are sarky, 12 from the bottom.
    Keith.
     
  33. sarky

    sarky Expert Member
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    Don't know how I missed that, lol
     
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  34. Keith H.

    Keith H. Moderator Staff Member
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    I expect that you had traps fixed in your mind sarky, & the word I started with was Primitive. Easily done ;)
    Keith.
     
  35. Zeyad

    Zeyad New Member
      3/29

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    The 2 most important skills probably are knowing how to start a fire and tracking and finding a fresh water source
     
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  36. Keith H.

    Keith H. Moderator Staff Member
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    You can add shelter construction to those to Zeyad. But fire lighting skills MUST go beyond just using matches or a lighter, & you need to know how to make fire in the rain. These skills will not be learnt overnight, it takes research & practice, lots of it.
    Keith.
    More Here: http://australiansurvivalandprepper...7/06/long-term-wilderness-livingsurvival.html
     
  37. Tina Thompson

    Tina Thompson New Member
      8/29

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  38. Tina Thompson

    Tina Thompson New Member
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    Knowing how to can fruits and vegetables. This can be a huge resource for food, not just food but healthy food that can be kept for long periods of time. If circumstances allowed it can be taught to anybody else, I consider it a good survival skill if it's applicable in an event where it's possible to grow food. Regardless, if you have a big storage of canned food, that's great.
     
  39. Keith H.

    Keith H. Moderator Staff Member
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    All good skills to have, they are underrated.
    Keith.
     
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