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testing your limits..........

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posted on Aug, 12 2010 @ 02:58 PM
do you? have you walked into the desert with a knife and a jug of water?

sometimes people crack me up concerning their plans regarding when tshtf.
it's time for all of us to realize how much we still need to learn and experience.
at least twice a year i head into the desert or the forest for an education.
i travel as light as possible, 20 pound pack or less.
i usually do carry a bit of dry food, sleeping bag, tent and a few extras.
sometimes i just go for a walk empty handed and stay a few days, depends on how well i know the area.
the one thing i always find out is that it's a guarantee that something unexpected will happen.
one of my worst trips so far was just last winter.
i was camping in the area around alamo lake, and decided to do a week in the arrastra mountain wilderness.
i fugured i was prepared even though traveling light. i had a couple gallongs of water and emergency food.
knew of springs about ten miles in.
to make a long story short, the springs were dry.
it was hot, and i didn't conserve water on the way in.
then to top things of, i slid some scree and folded my ankle.
i made it out severly dehydrated, suffering from horrible headaches, and an ankle that i made much worse by hiking on.
every time i think i learned my lesson, i learn a new one.
for those who may think that food is easily obtainable, you best test your theory.

posted on Aug, 12 2010 @ 03:09 PM
Expect the unexpected. Such a cliche to say but you are only as good as how you react. I have never tried subjecting myself to any little survival trip, guess I am just lazy LOL. Do you ever feel like you went in too deep? Maybe this last instance you were talking about you felt that way. There are times that I have been left stranded in bad neighborhoods, or miles from home, and had to make a trek back which would be entirely on foot. While this is not the same as being out in the wild, with little food/water, I think it is still a good example of survival. I hate being anywhere without knowing where I am going.

posted on Aug, 12 2010 @ 03:18 PM
reply to post by The Endtime Warrior

it's actually the opposite. i usually end up thinking i should have pushed harder, could have stayed longer.
even the trip to the arrastras, i always thought i should have stayed and found another water source, let my ankle heal etc...
i'm a puss, i got worried and headed out.
the real experience would have been to stay.

[edit on 12-8-2010 by rubbertramp]

posted on Aug, 12 2010 @ 03:51 PM
You're no puss, a real puss would've never gone out the door. Count on the unexpected is about as true as gets and about as useless as it gets since you never know which direction the hit will come from.
I used to do survival trips but I've become disabled so I can't even walk far enough to get lost.
I had a similar experience running out of water - to celebrate my birthday I decided to go solo up into the mountains. After 1 day my water ran out and there was none to be found so down the mountain I came.
Eating wasn't usually much of a problem, it's more about acquiring the tastes for the stuff that;s available to eat. winter can be hard, not much except acorns and roots to be found.
Thanks for sharing your experiences, I hope others will do the same. It can get scary at times and the nights can be very cold and seemingly endless.
Man up people, go give it a try. You'll learn something valuable every trip.

posted on Aug, 12 2010 @ 05:30 PM
reply to post by Asktheanimals

You're no puss, a real puss would've never gone out the door.

true enough, and sorry to hear about your disability. must be frustrating.
and your right about the food to a point.
cactus is everywhere, but most besides prickly pear insn't very enjoyable to eat. specially raw.
my latest quest is finding out more about mushrooms. i was in northern new mexico camping recently and they were everywhere, all kinds of them.
sadly, the only ones i knew were the amanitas.

posted on Aug, 12 2010 @ 06:41 PM
reply to post by rubbertramp

Yeah if your just going on camping experience bad idea.

Solo trekking is risky, I try to avoid it, ie. "no man is an island"

If you have looked over most of the survival material available and
went out and practiced it some then your likely gonna be ok.

A lot of ppl who are confident are actually over confident.

Going down a scree slope is not going to be made safer
by survival skills, it is just simply a risky situation.

To really do survival avoid risk when possible.

As for the springs being dry head for high ground and look for
lots of greenery, it takes water for plants & trees to grow.

If there are lots of green plants and no water dig a little and
odds are it is there.

If you do find water use one of the many ways to purify it.

As for food also consider wild edible plants, but at a minimum have
a illustrated guide for this and better yet attend a class as well.

Many survival folks also say stay away from fungi unless you
are 100% sure and I agree with that.

Trapping and snaring is illegal in a lot of areas, except in survival.

Know why ??? it works TOO well.

It still is not 100% but it works even while you sleep or do something
else, make sure and remove snares and traps once u leave.

Water, Food, Shelter, Self Defense, and Knowledge will allow most
ppl to make it anywhere.

The guys on the TV shows trekking in the heat of the day in 100+
degree heat are just showing you what is a BAD idea.

Travel at night, or near dawn or dusk, and avoid the heat of the day
like the plague.

In snake country wear knee high boots they can't bite thru.

One guy dropped off on an island with nothing but one knife and
lived there for a year.

It is mostly brains and determination.

[edit on 12-8-2010 by Ex_MislTech]

posted on Aug, 12 2010 @ 07:03 PM
reply to post by Ex_MislTech

all good points, except for higher ground.
in the desert it's usually the opposite. better chance of finding water in the lowest parts of the landscape. water runs down hill. a good example is death valley. there is actually a ton of springs. some are very salty, but a lot are fresh.
not only this, but at times easy water is down low in the arroyos, cottonwoods are a great sign water is near. although it may be deep.
i did one trip where i basically obtained all my water from cactus.

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 03:24 AM
Testing yourself now with minimal equipment, i.e., bob, inch, etc... is a very wise idea . You learn your limits, your area, your gear, and most importantly the skills you are lacking in. We ALL need to learn more. Those that have a BOL should practice getting to it by different means each time out. I get to mine with a truck, then on foot or via ATV. But a hike, or backwoods trails, are done often, just so I know the different lands and potential problems.

For those looking to do solo trips, be smart about it, take a sat phone and leave a map and timeline behind, don't want to turn out like that hiker a few years back that sawed his arm off with a leather man.

Also, don't go overboard. If I wandered into a desert tomorrow, the buzzards would eat me the next day. Not my terrain, not my expertise. SOS handbook would be my only hope. Now -50 F, that I can handle, granted, I don't enjoy it, but if you know your area, trust your skills, and think before acting, anyone should be able to handle their environment, no matter how extreme worst case can be.

Kudos for those who get out and better their skills. Also, water in a desert? Anyone try dowsing?

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 04:03 AM
you should start with no food and water for 24 hours.
at home.
you get a very bad head ack.
even with out just food you get a bad head.
so it you have a bad two days and can find no food.
you will be in a bad way.
you can slowly get your self uset to it.
it will help.
your body will not reackt so badly.
and find out how others did it.

[edit on 13-8-2010 by buddha]

posted on Aug, 20 2010 @ 07:19 PM
i was raised around ft. drum where tenth mtn div trains.
i live around arizona, have a hide out in the hills of costa rica.
i think i'm relatively good to go.
to the store for a cold beer.
and have a hot shower tonite.
i think i got the insight into hardship and adversity thing.

posted on Aug, 22 2010 @ 12:52 AM

Originally posted by buddha
you should start with no food and water for 24 hours.
at home.

[edit on 13-8-2010 by buddha]

I'm sorry but i find this to be a very dangerous and inconclusive way to test your limits. You can go without food for quite a long time but water? The only thing that's going to do is land you a bed in the hospital with an IV drip or worse. Start off with the basics of survival before jumping in over your head.

Learn how to make fire without matches, learn how to purify water with limited tools, learn what plants and animals are edible and whats poisonous. Learn the indigenous predators and how to spot them. Learn how to find the direction of North south east west by using the sun or moon. Learn how to make traps and snares and actually test them out. All of these things are the basics. Surviving can be very dangerous for the amateurs, so learn as much as possible is all I'm saying.

Oh and i applaud those who actually get off their arse and rough it on little to nothing. Kudos to you

posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 09:08 AM
reply to post by TheVaultDweller

I'm sorry but i find this to be a very dangerous and inconclusive way to test your limits.

i completely agree with this statement. fasting can be a positive thing to do health wise, clean out your system etc....
mixing it in with survival can be dangerous. the most important thing about surviving is to keep your strength up. i've done many extended fasts, and will admit that there is a point where you do feel a surge of strength, but it is not long lived, and after this surge, if you continue to burn calories and do not replace them it's basically downhill from there.
it's like dehydration, there's a point where you no longer feel as thirsty, i think it's some sort of mechanism our bodies turn on to ease the discomfort, but after a spell you're urine will turn a darker color, and even turn brown at a point. even though you may feel ok, this is when you cross the threshold into a very dangerous point.
been there, done that, i was lucky because my kidneys were ok, and did not begin to shut down.
keeping your energy up is more important than just about any aspect of surviving.
trying to cover ground, while being tracked by an enemy, and running out of steam means your done, caught, and on your way to the camp.

posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 09:55 AM
I have done a lot of research into surviving off the land. I like to think of myself as more prepared then most.

So this year my partner and I decided to go to Sweden's vast wilderness areas. Nothing but forests and lakes as far as the eye could see. No cell phones( lost our satellite phone the second day
, no tescos, no internet.....I assumed we'd be well prepared, afterall in the last couple of years we've done a lot to try and get our bodies ready, we've read a lot of books, researched a lot websites, and learned to use a lot of equipment.

Five days, just me, my partner our kayak and some rudimentary camping gear ( a tent, sleeping bags, an axe, fishing pole, and a roll of toliet paper).

Well. To say we weren't ready is an understatement. We went hungry. We were cold( for the life of us we could not get a fire started). We stayed wet the whole time. We got bit up by bugs. We lost our phone and had no way of contacting anyone in an emergency on the second day.

This was our trip, where we would imagine how we would manage should the # ever hit the fan, and we came out of it realizing that we have a long way to go!

Truth is, I hope to hell I am never in a situation where the camping trip from hell becomes my everyday reality. I don't know really how long I could survive.

In anycase, we made it back to civilization in one piece. Sure we were hungry, dirty and sore, but it was still fun testing ourselves. And a hell of an eye opener!

We want to do Alaska next, but this time we will make damn sure we can get a fire going at least!

posted on Aug, 23 2010 @ 10:01 AM
reply to post by Merigold

i truly believe the biggest part of survival education is realizing we are insignificant peons in a vast wilderness.
once we realize how powerless we really are, we tend to try harder to inform ourselves.

posted on Aug, 31 2010 @ 12:13 AM
Im glad you posted this Merigold. Its when nature proves to you....your not worthy, that you finally realize the "real" issues. While reading books, surfing the web and speaking with people is a really good form. Nothing will ever beat real world applications. Your post sums it up perfectly lol. I don't mean to make fun of you but most people just assume they can get a fire going from rubbing sticks together, without actually trying it until they "Need" it. I love how people watch movies and take it as actual fact too. Not saying you do this, just proving a point.

The dangers you face always depend on the location and season too. You could be stranded some where and faced with dropping gear that you think is useless. Sure, it may be 110 degree's out during the day and this winter jacket may seem useless, but how cold will it get at night in this valley? Oversight is something people who are not used to living outdoors always make.

I'll share a quick story with you. I was a boy scout when i was younger. The motto always was and still is "Always be prepared". When i was in the military we had to trek about 15 miles on foot in the AM. Mind you it was a very hot and muggy climate i was in. We had just finished a night time operation a couple hours before. We took a rest finally when we got to our destination. We had a good solid 40 to 60 lbs of gear on us (ACH, Vest, ruck sacks with gear in it, LBV, Rifles of course, Ammo, ect). Everyone's feet were dying and some had some killer blisters they could feel in their boots. Prior to coming i had packed baby powder, mole skin (Band aids but stronger), fresh dry pairs of socks, cuts ointment, and more band aids. I opened my boots up to see that all the water i had been pouring on myself to cool me off had obviously drained to my feet and my sweat was piled in as well. I pulled off my soggy socks and seen my feet were utterly destroyed and had no 1st layer of skin on the bottom(Looked like hamburger meat, same reddish color too). Friction is a bitch when you mix in water or sweat. People were laughing or asking me wtf i was doing when i started to dry, bandage, and put fresh socks on. Then they all became jealous when i finished and had a smile on my face ready to go, while they sat in sweaty and soaked socks barely able to walk right.

Moral of the story is obvious. Take care of the essentials. Water is always number 1 thing on the list. After that comes your feet, everything else is on a case to case basis.

Now as for you going to alaska...well i don't know you, your credentials or where your used to living, but winter climates are harsh. I would do a lot of research and invest in some good gear before making that journey. My advice would be to instead of "Not" bringing things to test your survival skills in extreme climates, bring them instead but just promise not to use anything unless its a dire situation. Maybe bring an extra backpack to store all the "extra" stuff in and put it somewhere out of the way and not touch it. Then as you get more and more confident with your ability to survive, you wont need to bring an extra backpack at all

posted on Aug, 31 2010 @ 12:18 AM

Originally posted by rubbertramp
do you?


have you walked into the desert with a knife and a jug of water?

a butter knife and an 8 oz bottle of water, me against the road runners, coyotes, rodents, and lizards. fun stuff, wish i wore more and had some sunblock, though.

seriously though, thanks for sharing,

posted on Oct, 12 2010 @ 10:07 PM
I certainly appreciate your survival efforts, but this all goes to show that the people that think that they are going to "live off the land" and survive long term when TSHTF are 1. not ready for it and 2. can't do it for any extended period of time. Basic wilderness survival, is just that, wilderness survival, with the hope of recovery to civilization. The problem with that, is that if that is your survival plan for TSHTF, then you're (not your) screwed. There may be the (very) rare individual that can do this long term, but even people trained in survival don't want to do it 24/7/365. My personal idea of survival is not hunkering down in a cave, flipping over rocks and eating bugs. Real survival is commitment to a lifestyle that involves a rural location, food storage, a like minded group of people, proper equipment and skills and brains. Growing our own vegetables and animals with a more back to earth homestead lifestyle is the way of the future, anyway. It is going to have to be that way for sustainability, in the future. For the guys that couldn't make fire in Sweden. Just FYI, you should always carry three ways to make fire, starting with matches, lighters, and then "high tech" low tech stuff. Yeah, if you want to practice low tech, that's fine, but at the end of the day you need fire, for safety. It is entirely possible you could have died because of that "little" misstep and that has a high probability of happening in Alaska if you mess up. I applaud the effort and the intent of wilderness survival. I agree with it simply for the sake of knowledge of one's self. The real survivalists will live in a house, off the grid (utilities, not that freeman BS) and have a lifestyle with little or no required external inputs and have proactive physical security. They will survive in relative comfort. 2cents

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