SURVIVAL SURVIVE THE NIGHT
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SURVIVE THE WINTER WILDERNESS

THE CHALLENGE

Survival situation: You are in the forest during the winter months. Your car breaks down. Help is not on the way.

Survive the Night.

MISSION OBJECTIVE

Using supplies you would have in your vehicle – we used a budget of 200 Swedish Kronor; Build a shelter that will get you through the night.

This Survival Exercise has two parts:

Identifying  suitable loadout.

Executing a plan in harsh conditions.

LOADOUT

SURVIVAL – 200KR / £20 BUDGET 

I. 2nd Hand High Carbon Steel Knife

II. A lighter or matches

III. Thermal Reflective Blanket / Space Blanket & Grannies Socks

IV. ORS – Oral Re-hydration Salts / Solution

V. Para cord / Twine cord

VI. Petroleum gel soaked cotton & White Petroleum gel

VII. Canteen filled with water & large metallic mug

VIII. Bags – Empty durable, small waterproof

ADVENTURE

X.  Compass, shovel, axe & hand chainsaw

CONSIDERATIONS

I. Water

You will dehydrate far quicker in cold temperatures so never underestimate the amount of water you’ll need to consume.

II. Comms

These types of scenarios should never really be attempted alone. If you decide to break protocol and go solo – ensure you attempt the task in an area you know well, carry at least 2 forms of comms device and have a friend checking up on you on regular intervals, with people knowing where you are.

III. Gear

Your metallic mug will work as a stove for melting ice for extra water. Para cord can be used for everything from building structures to dragging wood.  The bags are primarily to keep things dry and and transport fuel. Most importantly; grannies socks. Find a home knitted pair of woolen socks at a boot sale or someone’s attic. They don’t get the respect they deserve, be their destiny.

EXECUTION

I

IDENTIFYING CAMP

Your first consideration will be gauging the weather to assess the land level of your shelter. In general avoid being in any type of valley as cold air gather in these recesses which can lead to a 5 degree or so temperature shift. The only factor that may influence this would be if you are in extreme wind and rain where taking a lower position may be your optimal position.

Your second consideration will be trying to be as close to your fuel source as possible – so finding the wood sources best for fuelling your fire and minimising your journey to them.

II

FUEL AND INSULATION

Now you want to be collecting as much fire wood and kindling as possible. You can use your bags to transport the kindling and para cord to drag bigger branches too. Aim for dry sources which can usually be found at the stems of spruces and junipers. Thin papery bark from birch trees makes great kindling too. You’ll also be collecting larger branches of pinewood or spruce to act as a grounding insulation on your camp.

It’s best to know your area in advance as trees will be specific to your region – so plan ahead and know what to look out for. Remember – you can add petroleum gel to problematic fuel sources to “encourage” them to burn.

STEP 2.1

Get more wood. You don’t have enough.

FIRE IN DEPTH

“REMAIN STOIC IN THE DARKNESS TO NEVER BE WITHOUT LIGHT”

III

FOUNDATIONS AND REFLECTOR

As a starting point ensure you have at the very least 1 hour of daylight left. The foundations of your camp should ideally be set so that your camp has a fire at it’s mouth, with the other side of the fire backed up to a wall of some kind. This can be made with branches if your surroundings are lacking. This is to maximise the effective heating of your fire, acting as a reflector to the heat moving away from your camp.

IV

SHELTER

Your key elements here are your ground and ceiling. Your shelters ground will be lined with as many branches as possible, packed down as tightly as you can. This acts both as insulation, but also keeping you off the frozen ground minimising the negative effect the ground will certainly have on your survival.

Your ceiling will be made with your thermal blanket. Stretch it out, sloping ever so slightly away from the fire to ensure any kind of condensed water won’t come down on you. You’ll want to keep your ceiling as low as possible without allowing it to touch you.

ENDURE

With your camp and fire set – be ready to survive the night. This won’t be your most comfortable nights sleep – but we can still stack the deck in our favour.

If you still have daylight – gather more wood. Large pieces will be perfect as the last ones to go on the fire before sleep. This will allow the burn to maintain longer into the night.

SIGR

SUMMARY

Maximise your survival chances with location choice.

Comms are everything. Do not attempt the objective this alone.

Have contingency plans and research your area – foundations are key.

Stack up on fuel and ensure you have daylight to build your camp.

Maximise your heat efficiency with reflectors and early stacking.

Have designated places for gear storage so it can be found in any situation and conditions.

Do what you must to keep warm: Rubbing snow, drinking and smoking to heat up are myths.

That said; do the penguin, put your hands in your armpits or groin and violently hugging yourself with exaggerated movements all work.

If there’s two of you – skin contact of toes into each others armpits is far more effective than it sounds.

Do not go gentle into that good night.

TIPS

FUEL

It really cannot be mentioned enough. Get all the fire wood you need and triple it.

TIME

Manage your daylight. Things will get harder quickly when darkness falls.

INTELLIGENT EXECUTION

You should spend roughly 5 x the amount of time gathering on building your camp.

WATER

You can fall into a dehydrated state far faster than you’ll realise.

RETURN TO SURVIVAL
SHARE YOUR SIGR

SURVIVAL ARCHIVES

HOWL

2019-10-13T20:34:30+00:00
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