These tips, tricks and skills are based off of many years spent camping, hiking, and also from my time spent at the USAF Survival School at Fairchild AFB in Washington State. I went through in February.... as you can imagine, the mountains in Washington State at that time of year are a cold and desolate place to spend time. I have also studied the writings of others quite extensively, and have gathered what I would estimate to be the simple but effective skills that anyone can use.
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PRIMITIVE HUNTING TOOLS
As I have mentioned elsewhere on this site, food is the LAST thing you should worry about. Shelter, fire, water and signaling for help are far more important. Remember the rule of 3's... You can die from exposure to the elements in 3 hours, you can die from lack of water in 3 days, but it takes 3 WEEKS or more to die of starvation. 3 weeks is a long time, so plan for your essentials first. If you have your other bases covered, then you can start planning for food. Snaring and fishing are your best bets, as they allow for you to "set and forget", which means that you conserve energy. All hunting should be done with as little energy expenditure as possible. Find a comfortable spot and wait for dinner to come to you.
The Hunting and snaring skills that I cover on these pages are very different from what most people might be thinking. There are no spring steel bear traps or scoped hunting rifles discussed here. All of the tips and tricks involve primitive weapons and snares. This started as a page, but ended up as a web in and of itself. Primitive hunting tools are often the most effective. One could spend a lot of time building a bow and some arrows, but unless your arrows are masterfully crafted, they will fly everywhere EXCEPT where you intend them to go. Even a modern bow with modern arrows requires a modicum of skill and a lot of practice to be an effective hunting weapon. The tools shown below do not require any master craftsman skill sets to fabricate, and they are relatively easy to use.
THROWING STICK - A primitive, but effective weapon for small game hunting.
CAVEMAN THROWING STAR - An even more effective tool for small game.
SPEAR WEAPONS - When one thinks of primitive weaponry, these are the tools that come to mind.
SNARES AND TRAPS
Setting snares is often times the easiest way to rustle up some chow in the wild. It allows you to expend an absolute minimum of energy as opposed to hunting. There are a HUGE variety of snares that can be made ranging from the very simple to the VERY elaborate. As in anything else, simple is better. It works, and with minimum effort on your part. The simple ones, being quick to make, allow you to set MANY snares, thus multiplying your chances for a fine dinner. As such, I'll stick to the simple and effective examples.
SQUIRREL SNARE - A very simple and very effective snare.
RABBIT SNARE - A very simple and very effective snare.
SNARING AND TRAPPING FISH - The easy way to fish.
For the noose portion of the snares, you can employ key rings or grommets for the rope to slip through, or simply make a loop in the end of your line as shown below. I use this knot a lot.
Skinning and Gutting Your Kill - A new section added by popular demand !!!
FM 21-76 US ARMY SURVIVAL MANUAL
I will add to this page as often as I have time, but if you want the original be-all and end-all source of survival information, it is the FM 21-76 US ARMY SURVIVAL MANUAL. I have crunched it all into an MS Word Document. I abridged it only by removing the Appendixes from the end. It is 233 full size pages in all, and the overall file size is about 2.5Mb, so it is relatively easy to download. Whereas your tax dollars paid for it already, please feel free to distribute it as you see fit. Simply RIGHT CLICK HERE and select "Save As" to Download.
Don't have MS Word? They give away the viewer for free HERE
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