Survival Kit

The Pack Rifle

The only readily available sub 500 gram take down rifle available in Australia is this little beauty. It is available in .22LR only and single shot. However if you need a bunny or perhaps a duck for the pot, or some protection from wild dogs (which are becoming ever more dangerous) in the High Country …

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The Compleat Survival Guide:

If you have no air, you have only about a minute to live. The absence of shelter and warmth may kill you in a few hours, lack of water in a few days, lack of food in weeks. Therefore it is clear where your priorities should lie, yet every year many folks perish/suffer mostly for …

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Trapped by Flood Waters

‘I got away up the bush for a few days recently. Lots of rain came in. The rivers were in flood, went up over 2 metres and home was on the wrong side. Also discovered that the seam sealer tape on ultrasil dry bags deteriorates – my sleeping bag and all my gear was saturated wading …

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The Other Kingdom

This autumn we were in Scotland when our fields were alive with field mushrooms, alas. Mushroom time is one of my favourites. I always collect heaps of them, fry them up with lots of butter, onions and bacon then smother golden toast or pasta with them. I guess my waistline isn’t  missing them. This evening …

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Garmin Inreach Mini:

At last a fully functional GPS, satellite communicator and epirb which weighs 100 grams (3.5 oz!) The new and improved ‘Poor Man’s Satellite Phone‘. I already own the earlier ‘Delorme Inreach’ model (190 grams) which I love, so can’t imagine just now spending perhaps A$499 (Jun 2018) on its replacement in order to save carrying …

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What to include in a wilderness cache:

I have a number of favourite spots I visit every now and then sprinkled around the Gippsland bush mainly far from roads. Many are on the other side of large rivers which sometimes rise unpredictably and can cut you off for many days from ‘civilisation’ – whatever that is. Here I was two days ago …

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Fire Umbrella:

How to prevent the rain from putting out your fire? I have been toying with this idea for some time. This week I decided to try out an ‘ultralight’ method. I constructed this 1 metre x 1 metre square of tyvek for that purpose, sewing gross grain ribbon tie outs on each of four corners. …

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Raincoat Shelter:

How to make your raincoat into a shelter. I hope you realise how this is important as every year people die because they keep on wearing their raincoat instead of sheltering under it. I know when you are out in the cold pouring rain probably the last thing you are going to think is, ‘Must …

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Fire from a Can of Coke and a Chocolate Bar:

This is just about my favourite fire starting tip: It is surprising the out of the way places you can find a humble aluminium can and beleive it or not, you can polish the bottom brightly enough that it will focus the sun’s rays hot enough to ignite combustible material. Full instructions here (and many …

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Trowel Tent Peg

Many folks carry a trowel such as the (Suluk, Gossamer Gear or Vargo models below) for hygiene, to construct drain lines around their tent or as a survival water source digging tool. Another good use they can be put to is as a secure tent peg in soft ground, sand or snow. Their traction can …

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Ultralight Ultra-Sharp Knives 3 Grams:

Ceramic knives are sharper than metal ones and their edge can last 10 times longer. They can also be lighter. I have been thinking that this ‘ceramic escape knife’ would fit well in an ultralight fishing kit such as this: http://www.theultralighthiker.com/the-ultralight-fisherman/ This little guy weighs only 3 grams, has a blade 1.25” (3.175cm) and is …

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New Ultralight Survival Shelter:

Terra Nova Superlite Bothy Bags. There are occasions when you just may not survive unless you have a roof, even when you are planning to arrive at a hut or paid accommodation (See: http://www.theultralighthiker.com/the-importance-of-a-roof/) If you are not carrying a tent (or even an umbrella See eg http://www.theultralighthiker.com/hiking-in-the-rain/ or http://www.theultralighthiker.com/the-umbrella-redesigned/)  you should think about one …

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Fire Tent

  Further to my post about being able to light a fire in the rain, (http://www.theultralighthiker.com/how-to-light-a-fire-in-the-wet/) I have also long toyed with the idea of carrying/constructing a fire rain hat or raincoat so that heavy rain doesn’t put out your fire. The two occasions when it is really important to be able to light a …

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Backcountry Radio:

Most radios on offer will just not cut it at all once you get a few miles from the broadcast tower. This little gem has amazing sensitivity and will pull in stations from all over the world. I have owned this little guy for over 10 years (and it looks like it). It has been …

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Miniature Pens:

Some of these would make an interesting stocking filler. Whilst nowhere near as Ultralight as my own http://www.theultralighthiker.com/ultralight-pen/ some of them are quite interesting. Being able to have a pen handy on your keychain is a good idea, as is the pen which expands to full size when needed; http://www.lamy.com/eng/b2b/pico https://www.massdrop.com/buy/tec-accessories-picopen-keychain-pen?referer=EJ89BQ http://www.thewritingpenstore.com/c-121-wallet-and-keychain-pens.aspx Beta Inkless Keychain …

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The Rolls Royce of Back Country Trowels: Survival Water Sources

PS: I used to think these doohickies were pretty silly when I had a pair of heels would mostly do the same sort of thing, and had done for decades – then I began thinking of digging for survival water sources, purifying the water found & etc. I decided that it might well be 13 …

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Cold Weather Face Masks:

A life saver at 86 grams: I ordered one of these for my upcoming Everest Base Camp trek. It will keep my nose (& face) warm, a plus as this is one of the things that most bothers me about camping out in winter. More importantly though is that it warms incoming air by more …

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The Twelve Woodlores: Ray Mears.

Some sound advice from the introduction of Ray’s excellent ‘The Survival Manual’. If you have not caught up yet with Ray, you should. He is the original of those poor copies such as Bear Grylls having trained the SAS and others for many years in survival skills. You can get a taste of his style …

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Fire on the Snow:

Obviously you can light a fire on the snow but it will quickly melt the snow, sink into it and go out. And this is just when you most need a fire, so what to do? Find somewhere clear of snow is the easiest choice: often there is little or no snow under trees. It …

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I felt quite rich when I found my knife, flint and steel in my shot pouch:

Hugh Glass (‘The Revenant’, ‘Man in the Wilderness’):  ‘Although I had lost my rifle and all my plunder I felt quite rich when I found my knife, flint and steel in my shot pouch. These little fixens make a man feel righ peart when he is three or four hundred miles from any body or …

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