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Clever ain't wise.
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I've been personally cataloguing bushcraft and survival skills that I already know or would like to learn. It would be awesome if everyone could list some skills that are essential to mastering bushcraft and survival or perhaps some that an amateur such as myself wouldn't have even thought of or come across.

I will compile a list for everyone as the thread grows and edit it into the first post of the thread for ease of reading. Then I'd like to begin to knock them all off one by one as I do my wilderness trips this summer. Or even sitting around the house for that matter. Cool. Looking forward to the input. Thanks!

I'll start with a couple basic ones and we can go from there.

- Cordage
- Bow and drill fire starting
- Knot tying
- Tapping trees for water/sap
- Native American Fire Bed
- Woodworking (i.e. making shelter improvements, camp tools, kuksa, amenities)
- Metal working, blacksmith work, blade sharpening, etc.
- Trapping (i.e. snares, deadfalls, camp security setups)
- Stress relief (i.e. meditation, whittling, reading, cards) something to keep the mind busy
- Orienteering so as not to get lost or possibly to not be found
- Hunting (i.e. game birds, small game, big game)
- Wild edibles (i.e. learn what you have locally for eating and medicinal uses)
- Plant I.D.
- Food storage techniques (i.e. solar dehydration, smoking, curing with salt, etc.)
- First Aid
- Orenteering
- Tracking
- Improvization with available materials, shelters, tools, traps, ect.
- Open fire cooking and baking
- Pit cooking
- Hunting, weapons, traps, ect..
- Fishing, by hook, spear, or by hand or making gates and screens
- Skinning, no useful part of the animal is wasted
- Tanning
- Leather work
- Star recognition
- Working clay
- Weaving
- Gardening
- Fish farming
- Mineral recognition
- Knowledge of how and where to find water
- Procure and filter/purify H20 with natural materials (charcoal filters, sand prefilters, and such)
- Physical endurance
- Build a basic shelter (pine boughs and snow, debris bed, debris shelter, etc.)
- Make snowshoes out of pine boughs
- Feather stick
 

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ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒ&
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*woodworking (i.e. making shelter improvements, camp tools, amenties)
*trapping (i.e. snares, deadfalls, camp security setups)
*stress relief (i.e. meditation, whittling, reading, cards) something to keep the mind busy.
*orienteering so as not to get lost or possibly to not be found
*hunting (i.e. game birds, small game, big game)
*wild edibles (i.e. learn what you have locally for eating and medicinal uses)


just a few to think about for now
 

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Orenteering,
Tracking,
improvization with available materials ,shelters, tools,traps ect.
open fire cooking and baking,
hunting, weapons, traps, ect..
fishing, by hook, spear, or by hand or making gates and screens.
skinning, no useful part of the animal is wasted.
tanning,
leather work,
star recognition,
tree and plant recognition,still learning ,
ducting,
working clay,
weaving,
first aid,
gardening,still learning,
fish farming ,still learnig,
mineral recognition,still learning,
Most every thing is a learning thing, because as much as one my think they know ,there is always a better way or another way to do stuff.
Any ego that thinks they know it all is only fooling them self.
 

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The problem with living in the woods alone,with out some modern equipment ,is the lack of canning and preserving except for drying foods , and not having a regular natural resource for salt can complicate things.
Our bodies are not the same as those of the early settlers and indians ,we are significantly weaker biologicly, unless you have been living in rough conditions to begin with .
If one is near the coast you can dry out salt water on leaves and things but it takes time and a significant vessel to store it in.
Having a few modern convieniences and vessels make all the jobs easier ,the reason for their invention.
With out a base to work from to farm and provide security when ill or injured , the stress alone will age you quickly.
Years ago ,my dad demostrated to me by the example of several famlis we knew personally.
Famlies that the little children played in the dirt and ate mud pies were far healthier than those that lived in a steril environment.
The immune system does not develop if it is never challanged .
When one is very young is when it matters most.
Just something to think about.
 

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Clever ain't wise.
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The problem with living in the woods alone,with out some modern equipment ,is the lack of canning and preserving except for drying foods , and not having a regular natural resource for salt can complicate things.
Our bodies are not the same as those of the early settlers and indians ,we are significantly weaker biologicly, unless you have been living in rough conditions to begin with .
If one is near the coast you can dry out salt water on leaves and things but it takes time and a significant vessel to store it in.
Having a few modern convieniences and vessels make all the jobs easier ,the reason for their invention.
With out a base to work from to farm and provide security when ill or injured , the stress alone will age you quickly.
Years ago ,my dad demostrated to me by the example of several famlis we knew personally.
Famlies that the little children played in the dirt and ate mud pies were far healthier than those that lived in a steril environment.
The immune system does not develop if it is never challanged .
When one is very young is when it matters most.
Just something to think about.
You make some really good points. I guess the best thing to do is, like you said, try to develop your immune system on it's own, preferably from a young age. Don't take that cold medicine if you don't need to, try pine needle tea or something else native to your area. For food preservation, smoking meats and drying berries, things like that. I don't have salt occuring naturally near me either, so I have to learn other skills. Solar dehydration I should maybe add, etc.
 

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Clever ain't wise.
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
FYI, I'm going to get some answers more than once obviously. I'll do my best to only include it once in the master list. Great answers already, makes a guy realize how much there is to learn.
 

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The ability to walk into the mountains living as the Ancients with only what one has on hand for eternity or until one passes on (and not from starvation or the elements)

Living inside the Rocky Mountains from Canada to Mexico

They did it here for 10-12,000 years, the only reason we as modern peoples can't is because we've been taught that we can't....
 

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methods to procure and filter/purify h20 with natural materials (charcoal filters, sand prefilters, and such). I'd leave distillation as a procurement out; tried it personally and it is only enough for survival (i got a few tea spoons of water generated in half day with plenty of greens under the sheet) rather than long term sustainable of any kind.
 

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Cook over an open fire
Lot's of physical endurance (don't know if this is a useful skill)
Can build a basic shelter using pine boughs and snow
Can make snowshoes out of pine boughs

...that's about it. I could maybe survive in the spring/summer/fall. However, winter would be a tough call. :confused:
 

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Clever ain't wise.
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Cook over an open fire
Lot's of physical endurance (don't know if this is a useful skill)
Can build a basic shelter using pine boughs and snow
Can make snowshoes out of pine boughs

...that's about it. I could maybe survive in the spring/summer/fall. However, winter would be a tough call. :confused:
Nice ones! Love the snowshoe idea. And, yes, for sure physical endurance is a very important skill, one often overlooked. You need less sleep, can work harder for longer, recover faster, require less water, the list goes on and on. Thanks for your input.
 

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Clever ain't wise.
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·

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If you make certain you are wearing all wool (or wool/plastic undergarments to keep warm and wick water) its amazing what you don't need

We are spoiled into thinking one needs something over our person but this isn't the case

If you make a debris bed (leaves in East, small evergreen branches in North and West to insulate you from the ground) and build a fire right next to where your sleeping

You can get away with not having any of this stuff

Of course you have to get up and stoke the fire every 45 minutes to an hour, but your heat source comes from Mother Earth and not from "things" you've had to pack in

Problem with most man made materials of modern times, its made from some form of plastic and doesn't do well next to a fire, so one has to sleep to far from the fire to do them any good

This also includes sleeping bags and such

The reason I've learned with wearing all wool on the outer layers is it doesn't tend to burn and if its snowing/raining, tends to stay warm, being next to the fire, it also seems to dry very fast
 

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Clever ain't wise.
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
If you make certain you are wearing all wool (or wool/plastic undergarments to keep warm and wick water) its amazing what you don't need

We are spoiled into thinking one needs something over our person but this isn't the case

If you make a debris bed (leaves in East, small evergreen branches in North and West to insulate you from the ground) and build a fire right next to where your sleeping

You can get away with not having any of this stuff

Of course you have to get up and stoke the fire every 45 minutes to an hour, but your heat source comes from Mother Earth and not from "things" you've had to pack in

Problem with most man made materials of modern times, its made from some form of plastic and doesn't do well next to a fire, so one has to sleep to far from the fire to do them any good

This also includes sleeping bags and such

The reason I've learned with wearing all wool on the outer layers is it doesn't tend to burn and if its snowing/raining, tends to stay warm, being next to the fire, it also seems to dry very fast
I put debris bed down under basic shelters. Thanks. And couldn't be more right about the wool, amazing material indeed.
 

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Conscious Ape
Your right, I've found no man made material better than wool
I have heard some of the other wools besides sheep is even better
Something I might have to invest in to see (alpaca, lama)
Supposed to be softer and hold up better under extreme conditions (wet/cold)
Will be interesting to see
 
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