Monday, June 20, 2016

Chilcotin Holidays

5w’s of setting up a shelter

After only one day at the ranch I was lucky enough to get the opportunity to go on a bushcraft survival course. This is an area I find very interesting and would to love to know more about as it seems we as a species don’t know how to survive without all our modern conveniences.

As Nick, our bushcraft survival instructor, brought us away from the ranch and into the wilderness he gave us a lot of useful information on what plants we could survive on in a pinch. On reaching our destination he talked about the importance of finding the right location to set up camp.

The easy way to remember is that there are 5 W’s of setting up a successful shelter. They are; water, wood, wind, wildlife and the widow maker.

Having access to water is very important, we need it to drink, wash and make food. It is also important to bear in mind that rivers can flood so do not to set up too close if there may be heavy rain.

Access to wood is another useful commodity when setting up shelter. Live green wood can be used to build your shelter and dead standing wood can be used for firewood.

We need to consider wind when setting up, how far away is tree cover? Five metres is good but up to twenty metres will also work. The trees and brush can protect us from the wind.

Being aware of the wildlife in the area is another important consideration. Avoid setting up shelter in the middle of a track or trail as animals will also use the easiest through way and they may not be all that friendly. Look out for nests and again consider distance from water source, wildlife will also use this.

Finally, the widow maker could be one of the most important W. Look above your shelter and make sure there are no dead trees or branches. If one were to break and fall from a height it could kill you.

The 5 W’s are a great way to recall what you need to know when setting up a shelter. I feel confident after learning these that I could pick a good location for a shelter if I was in this situation. The bushcraft survival was a great experience with our very knowledgeable and fun instructor Nick. Hopefully, I will get the chance to do another during my stay at Chilcotin Holidays

Chilcotin Holidays

About Chilcotin Holidays

We are a licensed guide outfitter and we conduct guided wilderness adventures throughout our 5,000 square km operating area. This guide area has been operational since 1880, making it the oldest in British Columbia. More about us HERE.

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