Having your survival gear while in the wilderness and knowing how to use it like a true pro can be the difference between struggling or thriving in nature. You’ll need to get yourself quality bushcraft equipment and practice with these tools as often as possible until you master them.
The unfortunate people who get lost and die in the wilderness usually pass away from exposure (lack of shelter), lack of food and water, health issues, or in rare cases they get mauled by animals. Almost all these people share a common factor: they didn’t pack the proper bushcraft tools.
Learn how to choose the right equipment and you’ll not only have a lot more fun while exploring the great outdoors, but you’ll also have a higher chance of survival if things suddenly go wrong.
Most People Choose The Wrong Survival Tools & Equipment:
It’s very common for outdoor enthusiasts pack the wrong kinds of survival equipment when going hunting, backpacking or exploring. People often pack too many luxury and novelty items or they buy too many pieces of cheap, low-quality gear.
When deciding on the best outdoor equipment you need to always need to prioritize quality and functionality.
Aesthetics are the least important buying point. There’s nothing worse than having to rely on a cheap bush knife or machete to have it snap while you’re batoning or chopping branches for your shelter.
The first thing you want to do when planning on the right outdoor equipment for your adventure is decide on the essentials! This leads us to the next section:
#1 – Choosing A Versatile And Durable Survival Knife
It’s important you choose the best survival knife because it’s one of the tools you’ll use the most if you find yourself in a wilderness survival situation. These extremely versatile tools are designed for a wide range of uses.
Survival knives are used for food preparation, cutting wood & rope, they help you start fires in less than ideal conditions, fabricate new tools, self-defense, hunting weapon to finish off prey, and most importantly they can help you build your shelter.
#2 – Choosing The Best Overall Bushcraft Machete:
For jobs that are too big for your survival knife, you’ll want to rely on your trusty machete. The machete is an extremely durable tool meant for hard, abusive work that you wouldn’t want to risk using a survival knife on.
Common tasks you’d use your survival machete for are things like chopping trees, splitting wood, clearing brush for your shelter site and self-defense. If you get a smaller type of machete it can be used for many of the same tasks as a survival knife.
#3 – Choosing A Durable And Spacious Backpack:
Your backpack must be extremely durable, and completely waterproof, ideally it should have adjustable webbing to attach important extras. The best expedition backpacks tend to have a hipbelt stabilizer which you can clip around your waist to take some of the weight of the load onto your chest and hips.
There are hundreds of different backpack styles, sizes and shapes… it’s easy to get overwhelmed. Typically you’ll want to narrow things down by choosing a backpacking / expedition style pack.
#4 – Choosing A Warm And Comfortable Sleeping Bag:
Having a warm and comfortable sleeping bag is a very important part of your overnight gear kit. When you get good uninterrupted rest, your body will be healthier and more resilient which means you can work with more speed and efficiency during the day.
Some of the key factors you’ll want to look into when choosing a high quality sleeping bag are insulation types (synthetic vs down), fabrics and materials, types of construction, and of course, the type of the sleeping bag itself.
#5 – Choosing A Bright And Energy Efficient Flashlight:
Recent advances in lighting technology mean you don’t need to lug around an oversized flashlight full of DD batteries any more. Modern flashlights are small, extremely bright, and most don’t drain batteries
The main questions when it comes to choosing a new flashlight are: What style switch does it have? How bright is it? Is it durable and rugged? Is it ergonomic and comfortable to use? Is it waterproof? How long does the charge last?
#6 – Choosing A Multi-Tool That’s Built For Wilderness Survival:
Plier style multi-tools are extremely popular, they’ve almost made the Swiss army knife obsolete because they’re a far better style of multi-tool. With these tools you can fix almost anything no matter where you are, and that’s perfect for a survival situation.
To pick your multi-tool you’ll need to decide where you’ll be using it most. For wilderness survival we highly recommend the full-sized belt style multi-tool which is carried in a sheath and packs lots of tools.
#7 – Choosing Your Water Purification & Filtration Items:
Water purification can be quite a complex topic and choosing the right gear isn’t always easy. You must consider all the factors like treatment time, filter medium, what organisms are filtered out, how long the filter lasts before needing to be replaced etc.
You should never overlook this critical piece of kit when heading out into the wilderness. Contaminated drinking water can be full of dangerous parasites, bacteria and viruses and it’s not always convenient to have to make a fire to boil it.
#8 – Choosing The Right Electronics To Make Your Travels Easier:
You’ll want to pack modern electronics that can make your travels a lot safer and greatly reduce the risk of being stranded. A solar radio, GSP unit and satellite phone are all very handy items to pack on your trip.
Bonus tip: If you’re bringing your four legged friend along you might want to consider buying a GPS tracking collar you make sure you never get split up. These types of dog tracking collars can track your companion even when he’s up to 10 miles away.
#9 – Choosing A Well Stocked First Aid Kit:
These items are often overlooked but can save your life in an emergency. Healthy and safety is very important to consider before you head into the woods. If you get lost, lose your navigation gear, become dehydrated or injured there items will be critical.
Things like a first-aid manual, elastic bandages, adhesive tape, sterile gauze pads, soap, antiseptics, antibiotics, cortisone cream, tweezers, scissors, safety pins, ibuprofen, hydrogen peroxide and other emergency items should all be within quick reach.
#10 – Choosing A Powerful Deterrent – Bear Spray:
Bear spray is an essential item you never want to overlook. The bear spray vs. bullets government funded study shows that shooting a charging bear will often escalate an attack. We still recommend having a high caliber firearm, but only as a backup to the bear spray.
a person’s chance of incurring serious injury from a charging grizzly doubles when bullets are fired versus when bear spray is used.”Canadian bear biologist Dr. Stephen Herrero
Bear spray isn’t just good for dealing with brown and black bears, it’s effective against other dangerous animals like wolves, wild hogs, moose, mountain lions and others. If the situation calls for it and your life is in danger it works well on humans as well.
#11 – Choosing The Compass That Will Guide Your Journey:
Electronics get lost, they can break and they often fail. That’s why it’s extremely important you always pack a map and compass. Most importantly you need to have a good understanding of how to use these important pieces of survival equipment.
These trusty, low-cost devices use a very simple technology compared to a GPS and have a very small chance of breaking. Compasses and maps are lightweight and take up almost no space in your backpack, best of all they require no power source.
Overview of The Survival Equipment Essentials:
The main outdoor equipment you should be bringing on every trip are your survival knife, a machete or small light-weight axe, a quality sleeping bag, a flashlight, a multi-tool, water purification items, a GPS unit, a map and compass and of course extra clothing.
This list of items will help you decide on the key fundamental items that should always be with you when ever you head out on an outdoor adventure. If God forbid your trip turns bad, and things get from bad to worse, these items will give you the very best chance of surviving in the wilderness.