Wilderness Survival Skills

Wilderness Survival has articles about staying alive in the outdoors. Learn about wilderness survival skills in the Wilderness Survival Channel.


Not everything natural is safe — many plants and animals can sicken or even kill you if you eat them. Here are 10 of the deadliest.

Vanished hikers. Disappearing backpackers. Missing children. Are these mysteries in the great outdoors due to accidents, mistakes and bad luck, or evidence of something more sinister?

How do you tie a knot if it's impossible to do so? Maybe this is a trick question.

You're stranded on a boat at sea, no substantial food or water for days, living off collected rain and already having lustily consumed the leather brim of your hat. That's when you realize there's a huge chunk of meat sitting right next to you.

It may not look like much, but this little piece of wrist wear is very useful in a bind. Unlike other jewelry, it can help you get dinner, stop blood or make a shelter.

Long before GPS, before radar, indeed before the compass, people used the stars in the sky to figure out their destinations. You can do it, too. Here's how.

The desert is a place of extremes. And camping in such an unforgiving environment requires a good deal of preparation, and above all, a lot of respect.

Well, we can. But why don't we do more of it? With oceans and oceans of seawater, you'd think we could make enough freshwater to never go thirsty again

Blackberries, raspberries and cranberries are all found in the wild, but you'd better be sure you've got the right berry before you eat one off the vine. There are plenty of berries in the woods that could kill you.

When your camping trip turns life-or-death because you've lost your way in a vast, unpopulated wilderness, you'll want to have these gadgets on your person.

If you're stranded in the wild and you're not carrying a hunting rifle, your best bet for bagging dinner is probably a snare or a trap. But how do you set one up?

A Japanese hiker slipped, was knocked unconscious and then survived 24 days without food or water. That's not supposed to be possible. What survival instincts fuel us through dire straits?

Toxic tree frogs, poisonous plants, malaria-carrying mosquitoes. You get the picture: The jungle is no place to get lost. How will you make it out of this lushness alive?

Machete, knife, gun, mosquito net. They would all be plenty useful in the jungle. But there's one survival tool that beats out all the rest. What is it?

Does the thought of sucking down larvae trigger your gag reflex? Then you may not hack it in the wild. Insects are an excellent source of protein. Pry up a rock and you've got dinner.

Skin a dead animal. Smash its leg bone into a blade. And use its tendons to tie that blade to a handle. Sound gruesome? That's how you'd make a knife in the wild.

In the wilderness, one of these weapons will help you send out a distress signal, keep warm, build a shelter and not drown. The other is relatively worthless.

The sun beats down and your skin burns. Your parched mouth begs for water, and you fear a sandstorm is on its way. You're stranded in the desert. How will you survive?

You might not look at a tarantula and think, "Yum." But if you were in a survival situation with only bugs to eat, how would you know which ones are safe?

Let's say you're lost in the wilderness. Rather than guess which berries aren't poisonous, you take down a rabbit. If you're too famished for cooking, will eating it raw be disastrous for your health?

There's north and then there's true north. Find out how stabbing a stick in the dirt to make a shadow can help you find the true north.

When wind and water steal heat from your body, your internal temperature plummets. Find out why you'll need more than just some mittens and a stocking cap to prevent hypothermia.

Gandhi fasted for three weeks while he was in his 70s, but he had water to drink. How long can the average person last without food or drink?

You may associate smoke signals with Native Americans in old Westerns, but they aren't totally a thing of the past. Find out why the Boy Scouts still teach kids how to make them -- and how you can send some yourself.

The chance that you'll be shipwrecked on a deserted island and have to start a fire is slim. But let's imagine that you're lost somewhere and it's getting dark and you don't have any matches. What do you do now?

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