Outdoor Quotes: (Fishing)

My biggest worry is that my wife (when I''m dead) will sell my fishing gear for what I said I paid for it.

Koos Brandt

Survival Blanket

Survival Blanket

Basically, a Survival Blanket is a sheet of foil which reflects most of a person's body heat. It's made from a material developed by NASA in 1964, which is why it is often known as a ‘space blanket’.

Emergency Blanket might be a better name.

Most Survival Blankets are made from Kelvalite, which is a material made from plastic, coated with a metallic reflecting agent. It looks a bit like aluminium tin foil. You can also get gold coloured blankets, which are popular with photographers as a makeshift reflector because the gold colour improves skin tones.

Whatever it is made from, its ability to reflect most of a persons radiated body heat is why it is such an invaluable survival aid.

Retaining Body Heat

The body loses heat by radiation, convection, conduction, evaporation and respiration.

A space blanket will reflect between 80% and 95% of radiated body heat, will help cut down on heat loss by convection (wind chill), and can cut down on heat loss by evaporation (sweat) if you ensure there are no gaps where moisture can escape generic cialis online.

Although it will help a little against heat loss by conduction, this can be fairly minimal. The obvious place for heat loss by conduction is the ground and you would be much better placing the patient on a camping mat or sitmat.

Extremely Compact & Lightweight Survival Aid

It's compact size when folded, light weight, and thermal qualities have made the space blanket a virtual 'must have' in a survival kit. Water proof and windproof as well, they really could save someone's life - indeed have on many occasions.

They can be a very important part of your survival kit, especially if it's likely to be cold.

Remember, that even in the summer a person could get hypothermia after prolonged exposure in the water.
When folded they take up less space than a 2 oz tobacco tin and weigh about 60 grams.

And, costing only about £2, a survival blanket really should be part of your essential survival equipment.

Signal Mirrors

Signal Mirrors

A signal mirror should be an essential part of any survival kit. One of the five essentials for outdoor survival is a signalling device.

Survival experts worldwide agree that anyone who engages in any remote outdoor activity should carry a signal mirror and a whistle.

U.S. military survival training experts rate the signal mirror second only to the radio or telephone for seeking help. Every military survival kit is required to include a signal mirror, and all personnel are trained to use one.

Unfortunately, the majority of the general public possesses only limited understanding of the value of a signal mirror and its ability to save their life.

Three men stranded on a frozen pinnacle of ice were rescued after a passing ship noticed a flash on the distant horizon - a flash from a signal mirror hanging from an unconscious man's neck. This story demonstrates that you should never underestimate the value of a signalling device.

With a flash that can be seen for up to 100 miles, the signal mirror has been called the most underrated tool in a survival kit.

Making your own Signal Mirror

If you make up your own emergency survival kit and store it in a 2 oz tobacco tin, you can polish the inside of the lid of the tin to make it reflective. There are many Combat Survival Kits available that are contained in a similar type of tin, so you could use the lid of one of these.

Of course, this would not be good enough to use as a mirror for shaving, inserting contact lenses, or applying makeup or camouflage. The Web-tex Combat Survival Kit is in a plastic box with a mirror in the lid.

Long Distance Visibility

Signal flashes can and may be seen even when you cannot see the aircraft, boat, or other means of rescue. So when signalling and no specific targets are in sight, be sure to continually sweep the horizon to maximize your chances of being seen.

At night, flashlights, headlights, and moonlight can produce effective signals with a signal mirror.

You can also use a signal mirror as a silent communications tool to signal an outdoor companion, or for looking around corners or into tight spaces.

Use it for emergency signalling to send a pinpoint flash to a rescue plane, helicopter, vehicle, or distant search party.

Remember, one of the five essentials for outdoor survival is a signalling device, and U.S. military survival training experts rate the signal mirror second only to the radio or telephone for seeking help.

So whatever type of signal mirror you choose, make sure you have one with you.

Emergency Bivvi Bag

Emergency Bivvi Bag

Emergency Bivvi BagAn Emergency Bivvi Bag has become a very popular addition to backpackers', scouts' and cadets' kit bags.

Basically, an emergency bivvi bag is a waterproof bag to be slipped over a sleeping bag to make an emergency shelter. They are usually made from orange plastic (so they're not breathable) and often have some survival instructions printed on them.

As well as being able to use it to sleep in, it can be used to keep your kit dry, and the orange colour is highly visible and the internationally recognised distress colour.

Bivvi, Bivy, Bivi - What's in a Name?

The name bivvi comes from the word bivouac, meaning temporary shelter. As such there are quite a few variations - bivi, bivy, bivvy and so on.

Because of their popularity, several manufacturers have started making breathable versions. These tend to be olive green in colour, because of their popularity with the military. They are also very popular with fishermen.

The basic, orange plastic bivvi is not breathable, so condensation can form inside the bag. Because of this, it is only really suitable for use as an emergency bivvi bag.

If you are going to be using it every night you are much better off investing in a breathable bivi bag, like the one made by Snugpak.

Because of their usefulness (to sleep in, to keep kit dry, to sit on, and to signal with), and their very cheap price (from around £2), the Emergency Bivvi Bag has become an indispensable addition to the list of survival essentials.

Survival Essentials

Survival Essentials

What do we mean by Survival Essentials?

Well, there are basically 2 ways to look at it - essential equipment and essential needs. One obviously follows on from the other.

When you are out hiking, backpacking, camping or generally enjoying the great outdoors, if something goes wrong what do you need to ensure survival? What are your basic Survival Essentials?

Some Outdoor Survival Equipment should be high on your list of required outdoor equipment for virtually any trip or expedition outdoors.

Even when walking your dog in the New Forest, for example, you should consider taking some survival gear with you - even if only a whistle.

The longer the trip, and the more remote your destination, the more you should take, and the more prepared you should be for an unexpected emergency.

What seemed a simple fishing trip, could turn into a disaster if you were to slip and break your leg. How easy would it be to call for help? What if you had fallen in the water and could not get yourself out? Hypothermia could set in very quickly.

If you consider your basic survival needs, factor in the type of trip you are planning and the terrain you will be covering, then you should be able to determine what basic survival equipment to take with you.

Basic Survival Needs

Your basic survival needs are:-

  • Medical (physical and psychological)
  • Protection (clothing, shelter and fire)
  • Sustenance (food and water)
  • Signaling (a means of communication to get help)
  • Travel (the ability to get to safety)

If you consider these 5 basic needs and look at the trip you are planning, you can work out what survival kit to take with you.

Remember that in a rescue situation, the survivor is usually the weak link. Change that by being prepared.

Failing to Prepare is Preparing to Fail.

Back in the 1930s, a mountaineering club based in Seattle came up with what they thought were the 10 essential items to take with you to survive an emergency situation.

The 10 essentials have since been adopted by hikers, backpackers, campers and many other organizations.

This list was obviously aimed at mountaineers, but even with advances in technology has hardly changed.

If you are not sure what to take, this list is a good place to start.

10 Survival Essentials

The original list was:-

  • A map
  • A compass
  • Sunglasses and sun cream
  • Extra food and water
  • Spare clothes
  • A torch or headlamp
  • A First Aid kit
  • Matches
  • A Firestarter
  • A Knife

Sunglasses and sun cream may be essential in the snow, but I think for a jungle expedition you might decide insect repellant was more important.

A number of items have been added to this list of 10, amongst them:-

  • Emergency Whistle
  • Signal Mirror
  • Emergency Blanket (sometimes known as a space blanket)
  • Water Purification System
  • Repair Kit
  • Emergency Bivvi Bag

As you can see, Survival Essentials is the Survival Equipment you need to take with you to cater for your Basic Survival Needs in an emergency situation.

These essentials should be stored in a small, waterproof container and carried on your person rather than in your rucksack. This way, even if you lose everything else, you should have the basic equipment necessary to meet the 5 basic needs for survival.

Map and Compass

These will (hopefully) prevent you from getting lost, and help you navigate your way to safety. When lost in unfamiliar territory you are more likely to become anxious and panic and this in turn will increase the chance of you having an accident and injuring yourself.

Sunglasses and Sun Cream

These will help prevent snow blindness and sunburn respectively. Severe cases of sunburn can lead to infection. For some types of expedition they may not be essential items, but if you’re going anywhere that is likely to have snow (or anything highly reflective like sand or water) they could save your life.

Torch (Flashlight) or Headlamp

A Torch (or Flashlight) has a number of uses. When traveling at night you are less likely to get hurt if you can see where you are going. You can use it to examine dark caves and recesses you might consider using for shelter. And you can use it for signalling. It is also a great morale booster.

Extra Food and Water

This can prevent hypothermia and dehydration, raise morale and reduce the chance of panic. (Remember that if you have no water you should not eat, because the body needs water to process any food you eat.)

Spare Clothes

Your clothes are the first line of defence for your body against the elements - or the last depending on which way you look at it. It is better to have multiple layers so you can add or remove layers as it gets colder or warmer.

If you have a complete set of spare clothing you will have something warm and dry to change into should you get wet.

Changing into warm, dry clothing is the quickest way to get warm.

Clothing should be kept clean, so having a spare set means you can wear one set while the other set is washed and dried.

First Aid kit

A First Aid Kit will normally contain things like plasters, bandages, and antiseptic cream – enough to treat cuts, scrapes, blisters, burns and maybe even a broken bone. Remember to include any personal medication you might be using.

Matches and a Firestarter

The ability to start a fire is one of the 5 basic survival needs. It provides warmth, a means of cooking and purifying water, will dry wet clothes, is a great morale booster, and can be used for signalling.


A knife is considered by many to be the most important item in your survival kit. It can be used for building a shelter, making tinder and kindling, cutting rope and clothing, opening packages, eating, and even surgery (after sterilization, of course).

Remember that these survival essentials are a guide. Think about the expedition you are making and adjust the list accordingly. If your trip is through woodland, for example, you might decide sunglasses and sun cream are not essential but insect repellent is.

Be prepared to supplement the list.

The following are some items you might consider.

Water Purification System

For extended periods in the wilderness/backcountry you might want to consider some sort of water purification system. If there is plenty of access to clean running water this may only need to be water purification tablets like Aquaclear.

Some sort of water filtration device might also be a good idea. A cheap option that does not take too much space and is very light is the millbanks bag yeapharmacy.com. Remember that most filtration devices will not remove bacteria and viruses, so you should also use a purification system (or boil the water).


A survival whistle is very small and lightweight, and an excellent way to signal for help. You can’t shout for long without losing your voice, but with a whistle you can call for help for hours. The sound from a whistle will also carry further.

Survival Blanket

Sometimes called a space blanket, these reflect over 80% of body heat and so are excellent for treating or preventing hypothermia.

Signal Mirror

I personally think a signal mirror should always be in the list of survival essentials. The flash from a signal mirror can be seen over 10 miles away.

Repair Kit

This might include duct tape and some sort of sewing kit to repair torn clothing.

Emergency Bivvi Bag

An Emergency Bivvi Bag can be used to keep items dry, to sit on, and to sleep in.

Tarp and Rope

A tarp (or Basha) and rope is excellent for building a shelter, but in your emergency kit you might consider a military style waterproof poncho which can double as a tarp (once you tie up the hood.). This can then also be used to keep you dry when on the move.

Don’t underestimate the importance of these items. It is very easy to find yourself in the sort of situation where one or more of these items will be critical for your survival - either through an accident or simply by underestimating how difficult the trip will be.

Types of Fire

Types of Fire - Fires for Different Situations

There are several types of fire that can be constructed to suit differing kinds of camping and survival needs.

Indian Fire

This is for an overnight or semi permanent campsite. The wood should be placed around the fire and the ends should be fed in.

If there is a need for extra heat such as for cooking, then push the fuel into the middle of the fire and let it burn up.

If the need is just to keep the fire going then the fuel should be fed in slowly as it burns to save on fuel viagra générique prix.

By digging a small bowl under the main fire the embers will stay hotter longer.

Star Fire

A star fire uses four big logs, set at right angles to each other. The fire is kept up by moving the logs in and out of the fire.

Altar Fire

On very wet ground or peat ground, it is necessary to change the shape of the fire.

The fire is raised off the ground on a platform.

It is important to make sure that the platform is lined with a suitable material that will not burn.

This is essential on peat ground as there is a risk of setting the ground alight.

Criss-Cross Fire

This fire is best suited as a cooking fire; it burns up quite quickly to leave a good even bed of coals.

Light a small Indian fire first and then build over the top of this in a criss-cross pattern that allows plenty of air to circulate around it.

Whatever type of fire you build, remember the destructive power if allowed to get out of control.

When finished with, always ensure the fire is well and truly out, and try to leave as little trace of it as possible.

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