When Disaster Strikes: Essential Wilderness Survival Skills To Have

The wilderness can be a dangerous place, but it’s also a wonderful resource. It’s full of adventure and beauty, and you never know what you might find if you’re willing to explore it. However, one of the biggest dangers in nature is being unprepared for an emergency situation when it arises.

Whether you’re hiking or camping alone or as part of an organized group, knowing how to handle yourself in times of trouble is essential for survival. Here are some tips on how to prepare yourself for an emergency:

10 Military Wilderness Survival Skills in 10 Minutes!
Prioritize learning essential wilderness survival skills to increase your chances of survival in any situation.
Always carry essential equipment in your survival kit, including a map, compass, knife, fire starter, and water filtration system.
Mental preparedness is just as important as physical strength when it comes to surviving in the wilderness.
Avoid common mistakes by following expert advice on wilderness survival dos and don’ts.
Stay calm and assess your surroundings if you get lost in the wilderness. Prioritize finding shelter, water, and signaling for help.

Stay Calm

In a situation where you are facing a stressful event, it is best to stay calm. When you are calm, you can think clearly and make good decisions. 

You can also use your energy more wisely because your body does not have to work as hard to stay focused and alert. If you are worried about someone else’s safety, try some of these ideas:

Stay positive! People who have had a lot of experience with dangerous situations will tell you that the best way to survive is by staying positive. 

This means talking positively about what may happen later or how things could turn out fine even if they look bad right now. 

These people also advise staying away from negative thoughts by turning off radios or TV shows that might be talking about bad news stories (unless they’re just trying to reassure listeners). Keep reminding yourself that most natural disasters don’t last very long at all maybe only hours instead of days or weeks like those awful hurricanes in Florida last year!

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Be Prepared

With the essential survival skills in mind, it’s time to get your gear together. A good wilderness survival kit should be lightweight, sturdy, and versatile. It should be small enough to fit into a pocket or backpack when not in use. 

The items you choose will depend on where you’re going and what challenges are likely to arise during your trip—it’s best to learn about the terrain and weather conditions before heading out so that you can pack accordingly.

Here are some essentials:

  • A waterproof container for storing food items (especially if they’re going to be kept at room temperature);
  • A fire starter;
  • Emergency blankets;
  • Navigation tools such as maps or compasses;

Be Prepared: Must-Have Items for Your Wilderness Survival Kit

KnifeGerber StrongArmA versatile and durable knife for cutting, chopping, and other survival uses.
Water Filtration SystemLifeStrawA lightweight and portable water filtration straw that removes bacteria and parasites from water sources.
Fire StarterZippo Emergency Fire KitA compact and waterproof kit that includes a reliable flint wheel lighter and wax-coated cotton tinder for starting a fire in any conditions.
CompassSuunto MC-2G Global CompassA durable and reliable compass that works in all weather conditions and can be used for navigation and orienteering.
First Aid KitAdventure Medical Kits Mountain SeriesA comprehensive first aid kit with everything you need to treat injuries and illnesses in the wilderness, including bandages and wound care supplies, medications, and medical instruments.

This table lists some of the essential items you should have in your wilderness survival kit to stay prepared for any emergency situation, along with recommended brands and descriptions for each item.


Shelter is one of the most basic survival necessities. If you can’t find shelter, you won’t survive for long in a wilderness environment.

Build a shelter to protect you from the elements. You can use your tarp or poncho as a makeshift tent if necessary. 

Tree branches can be used to build a lean-to or teepee style shelter with two main supports and a ridgepole at the top (use what’s on hand). 

An open fire will keep you warm during cold nights and cook your food, but staying away from poisonous plants will help keep hunger at bay as well—so make sure that when building any kind of structure in an area where there are plants growing, there aren’t any poisonous ones nearby!

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Water is one of the most important things to have in wilderness survival. Without it, you’ll quickly succumb to dehydration and starvation.

Finding water in a wilderness area can be challenging because water tends to run underground or hide under thick vegetation. A good place to start looking for water is at the base of trees near springs or rivers. There may be small pools there that haven’t been discovered yet. 

If you’re lucky enough to find some water that hasn’t been contaminated by animals or insects yet, treat it with purification tablets before drinking; this will remove any harmful bacteria from your drink so you don’t get sick or contract hantavirus (a life-threatening disease transmitted by rodents). 

You can also boil water over an open fire if necessary but this takes longer than just dropping tablets into it and waiting 20 minutes until they dissolve completely into solution form which is much quicker than boiling would take when dealing with larger amounts of liquid volume such as gallons instead of liters per person per day needed daily consumption rate requirement amounts needed during emergency situations where there isn’t enough time

Water: Importance and Methods of Obtaining Clean Water in the Wilderness

Water FiltrationMSR MiniWorks EXA durable and effective water filter that removes bacteria, protozoa, and other contaminants from water sources.
Water PurificationPotable AquaA water purification system that uses iodine tablets to kill viruses, bacteria, and other pathogens in water sources.
BoilingJetboil Flash Cooking SystemAn efficient and easy-to-use cooking system that boils water in minutes, making it safe for drinking after cooling.
Solar StillSurvivor IndustriesA portable and lightweight system that uses the sun’s heat to evaporate and collect clean water from contaminated sources.
DistillationMegahome Countertop Water DistillerA countertop water distiller that removes impurities through the process of boiling and condensation, producing pure and clean water.

This table outlines some of the best methods for obtaining clean water in the wilderness, along with recommended brands and descriptions for each method.


Fire is one of the most important survival skills to have, but it’s also one that many people don’t think they can do. The truth is, making a fire in the wilderness is easier than you think!

There are three types of fires: natural materials; matches or a lighter; and matchless starters.

Natural materials include things like wood and kindling from dead branches on trees (no live branches!), tinder (dry leaves/grass), and larger pieces that burn longer like logs or even tree stumps if you have no other options for fuel. 

You should always be aware of what materials are around you when choosing where to build your fire if there are any poisonous plants nearby, stay away! 

Also note whether there’s anything flammable nearby (such as dry grass) so that if your campfire spreads out into those areas, it doesn’t start another fire which could threaten your safety while cooking food or warming up in case of cold weather conditions during a survival situation.

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Food is a crucial part of survival. Having a plan for food will help you succeed when faced with any emergency situation.

There are many different types of food you can eat in the wilderness, but you need to know how to find and prepare them safely. A good survivalist knows which wild plants and animals are safe to eat, as well as how to prepare them properly so they don’t make you sick or get poisoned by harmful toxins.

You must also know how to cook safely! If your stove is malfunctioning or if it’s not windproof, fires may be necessary for cooking or heating purposes; however, lighting fires can be quite dangerous (and illegal) depending on where you are located within nature’s territory…

Food: Strategies for Obtaining and Preparing Food in the Wilderness

ForagingForaging TexasA website with an extensive database of wild edible plants found in Texas and other regions across North America.
FishingKastKing Emergence Fly Fishing ComboA versatile and durable fly fishing combo that is perfect for catching fish in lakes, rivers, and streams in the wild.
TrappingDuke TrapsA leading brand of animal traps, including cage traps, coil spring traps, and body grip traps for trapping a wide variety of animals, like squirrels and rabbits.
HuntingRuko Hunting KnivesA range of high-quality hunting knives that are suitable for skinning, gutting, and dressing game in the wild.
Food RationsMainstay Emergency Food RationsA non-perishable survival food ration that provides a complete range of nutrients and has a long shelf life, making it perfect for emergencies in the wilderness.

This table outlines different strategies for obtaining and preparing food in the wilderness, along with recommended brands and descriptions for each strategy.


Navigation is perhaps the most important survival skill. Having a good sense of direction can mean the difference between getting back to your campsite and safely finding your way home, or getting lost in the wilderness and potentially dying of thirst or starvation. 

Thankfully, there are several ways to find your way around without ever needing to use a map or compass. 

If you’re familiar with basic navigation principles, you’ll be able to use whatever tools are at hand (such as landmarks) and make sense of them by using some simple geometry.

The first thing to remember when navigating using landmarks is that if you go due north from point A, then walk for 10 minutes in that direction and turn 90 degrees toward eastward again before walking for another 5 minutes (a total distance covered thus far being 15 miles), then the place where those two roads meet must be where point B lies. 

This type of “triangulation” works because no matter how far away from each other two points may seem when viewed from afar – even if they’re hundreds of miles apart – they will always fall along parallel lines running through both points at right angles towards one another

“Don’t let the fear of the unknown stand in the way of your passion for exploring the wilderness. Be prepared and arm yourself with the knowledge of the essentials of wilderness survival. Our guide on the ultimate guide to wilderness survival: what you need to know provides you with everything you need to know to survive in any situation.”


Learning the basics of first aid is an essential part of wilderness survival. If you can use your knowledge to save someone else’s life, then it will be worth it.

First Aid For A Wound

If you have a cut on your finger or arm, clean and disinfect it by washing it with soap and water. Then cover the wound with a bandage. You can also use antibiotic ointment or an antiseptic cream on your cuts if they hurt or look infected.

First Aid For A Burn

If you get burned while trying to start a fire or cooking food, cool down the burn as quickly as possible by running cold water over it for 15 minutes or until the pain goes away completely. 

To help relieve pain after cooling down, put some aloe vera gel on the burn area and cover up with gauze bandages as soon as possible so that no more air gets in contact with it (this could make things worse). 

Try not worry too much about whether or not this hurts; just keep going until all discomfort has disappeared!

Signaling Techniques

An essential signaling technique is to use a signal mirror. If you don’t have one, you can create one using the bottom of a plastic bottle. You should also have some kind of signal flare or fire starter to use as well.

Signal mirrors are used to reflect light from the sun into an emergency location and visually communicate with aircraft, helicopters and other people in distress. 

Signal flares are used to attract attention from nearby aircraft at night, which is when most emergency situations occur. 

They can also be used during daytime hours if there are no clouds in the sky that could block out your reflection from the sun’s rays.

If your party is stranded and no help has arrived after several days, contact family members or friends who might be able to get assistance faster by contacting local authorities instead of waiting for someone else (such as a Search And Rescue unit) to find them

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Now, we have covered the most essential wilderness survival skills that every outdoorsman should know. 

Armed with these tips and tricks, you will be better equipped to handle any emergency situation and ensure a safe return home – no matter how far off-track or remote your trip may lead!

Further Reading

For more information on wilderness survival, check out these resources:

5 Essential Wilderness Survival Skills: Learn the critical skills needed to survive in the wilderness, including building shelter, finding food and water, and starting a fire.

Basic Survival Skills: Discover the basic survival skills you need to know, from finding safe shelter to obtaining clean drinking water.

Basic Survival Skills – Focus on These First: Focus on essential survival skills first, including first aid, shelter building, and fire starting, with these tips and techniques.


What are some essential skills for wilderness survival?

Some essential skills for wilderness survival include finding or creating shelter, obtaining food and water, starting a fire, and knowledge of basic first aid.

How can I stay safe if I get lost in the wilderness?

If you get lost in the wilderness, the most important thing to do is to stay calm and assess your surroundings. Prioritize finding or creating shelter, obtaining clean water, and signaling for help.

What are some common mistakes to avoid in wilderness survival?

Common mistakes in wilderness survival include not having enough water or food, getting lost without a plan, and not being properly dressed for the environment. It’s also important to avoid risky behaviors like trying to cross fast-moving water or climbing steep cliffs without proper equipment.

What should I include in a wilderness survival kit?

A wilderness survival kit should include essential items like a map, compass, knife, fire starter, first aid supplies, and a reliable water filtration system. It’s also important to pack enough food and water for an extended stay in the wilderness.

What’s the best way to start a fire in the wilderness?

The best way to start a fire in the wilderness is by using a fire starter or creating a spark with a ferrocerium rod. It’s important to have dry kindling and fuel on hand to keep the fire going once it’s started.