Posted 19 February 2006 - 11:04 AM
My thing about shelter is shelter meant that there are certain variables that must be attended to in any situation, although yes, the specifics may differ. In the arctic or high altitudes, cold and wind are the enemies. In the desert, heat and cold can be an issue in the same 24 hour period. The principles of shelter are what is most important to know; mainly it's about insulation and keeping the rain off your head. If someone understands what they need to make, and understand some basic properties of the materials they are likely to encounter, they can usually improvise something to survive the night with. The most important thing is knowing when to stop moving and start building a shelter. The environment you're in determines what what your shelter will be, and someone capable of making a lean-to or igloo can probably figure out which is appropriate and make something workable, and after surviving one night in either, I'm sure the survivalist would have a much-improved design for the second night. I've built a lot of lean-to's, never an igloo, but I intend to try at some point while I still have the luxury of being able to practice (a failure in practice not being fatal, hopefully). I'm not real happy about this paragraph, seems weak to me, but I guess I'm trying to say that once someone has a basic grasp of the properties of the materials they are likely to encounter, AND they understand what it is they are trying to accomplish with shelter, that they can likely throw something together to survive the night with even if they have not built that specific type of shelter before. Ugh, too many words.
Sure, humility in most situations helps communication, but this is a specific situation, and one in which some comments involve inflicting gunshot wounds; not a very humble response either. The spirit of my comments is to bring up some details I believe are being overlooked so that the people who think guys like me will just get shot aren't they themselves shot by a someone with a bigger gun (or more of them). Survival is not a contest, like the TV show version, and what appears as a lack of humility on my part is in my mind a poke at what I see as the lack of humility on the part of the stockpile-and-shoot-the-wandering-survivalist crowd. I never said my way was the only path to survival and salvation; just that anyone's probability of survival is greatly enhanced by the knowledge I advocate (and practice, but am by no means some kind of expert badass with).
Tom Brown jr began teaching SEAL units when Tom was 16, during Vietnam. Everyone he trained came back alive. Many of the SEAL teams' skills that set them apart came from Tom. The Tracker school is totally unique among such schools. SpecWar types attend because it's the real deal. FBI trackers are taught by Tom (not sure if he still does), along with agents from other departments (gee thanks Tom). One of the school's top instructors left to join the SEAL's. Some are on my class phone lists, so when the tracker groups hit the woods they likely will have some serious skills on board; all you guys with the guns want to contend with that? I'm glad that some of the worlds deadliest people are also learning meditation and shamanism and full survival, and that they and I are on the same team in that respect (not all, of course; some are just thugs). And you gun folks should've seen the hardware some of Toms SEAL buddies brought to a class once; I bet you ain't stockpiled that shit, but if they lose that hardware they are still a force to be reckoned with.
What I imply is not 'worthy' of my efforts is debating some of the opposing points, not the discussions. Debate about minute details that I know from my own experience to be true against theoretical musings is a waste of energy. If I tell the world what is in my refrigerator, and someone says "no, that can't possibly be in your fridge" then should I expend energy defending the validity of what I'm staring at? Such a debate can last forever and get nowhere. It's also context-specific. In this relatively anonymous forum, there is no way to verify any of the claims made by anyone. It would be different if I could invite someone over and show them what I mean, but I can't, so pouring tons of thought and energy into points that can be so easily dismissed regardless of the experience backing them up borders on pointless.
Don't look too hard for slaps in the face, or you will find them constantly.
I've made the points I desired to make, and at this point I'm intending to back out of the discussion/debate. I think my previous posts are adequate to express what I wanted to express here and can stand on their own; each reader can decide what they want to believe. And I would recommend that a reader not believe me, or you, or anyone but that they find out what's what on their own; go get your hands dirty and see for yourself.
Posted 19 February 2006 - 11:16 AM
quite a lot for a pointless exercise.
ah, but it is.
Survival is not a contest
Posted 19 February 2006 - 11:21 AM
Remember, we're talking about times when taking your Whisperlight stove back to the store is not an option, and even knives break/rust/fall in the river.
But knives are at least more reliable than guns that require a lot of parts working together to function, and can be used for more than shooting. I know how to chip certain kinds of rock for a blade if I lack a knife, but it's hard to knap a gun.
Posted 19 February 2006 - 11:28 AM
quite a lot for a pointless exercise.
I kept at it for the sake of those lurking observers that might be on the fence about the benefits of full-survival knowledge. I did not want someone coming away from this thread without seeing some of the common and quite valid concerns being addressed, thinking the case for full survival was weak.
It's only a contest among those who will for the most part die. Opposing each other is a vast waste of precious energy, and contending with nature is fatal. Full survival is about aligning with the forces of nature, not opposing them.
Posted 19 February 2006 - 11:31 AM
a wise man would surely carry one
even if he also carried a gun.
guns are more complicated, true
but not impossible to hand-build.
you're setting this argument up to your own position
by postulating a situation that i doubt anyone ever
finds themselves in.
we aren't likely to just be dumped with nothing in the wilderness,
the world is already full of machines and goods ready to use
and many other people.
and i just think it is some kind of 'purist' folly
to tell folks, as you did, that it's better to leave their
backpacks at home .
that's been my whole point all along,
you act like it's somehow 'better' to do it barehanded
and i just don't see that as anything more
than elitist purist crap.
we are humans, the tool builder.
going without our toys
is like tying one hand behind our back
then asking us to leave half our brains behind too.
we only do it barehanded when there is no other choice,
not because it is 'better',
and not as our first choice, like you seem to urge.
Posted 19 February 2006 - 11:43 AM
And the "dumped with nothing" scenario is much more likely to occur now, before societal upheavals. Getting lost in the woods for a few days for whatever reason (car runs off road, caught in surprise snowstorm, flat tire in the middle of nowhere, riots/disaster in a country you are vacationing in (tsunami, anyone?), that kind of thing) right now would likely catch us without our gear, unless we pack it in the car or on vacation all the time and it isn't destroyed in some kind of accident or uprising or flood.
I NEVER told anyone to leave their backpacks at home, just that they are like SCUBA gear and will slow you down and are not a substitute for knowledge.
Over and Out.
Posted 19 February 2006 - 11:44 AM
I kept at it for the sake of those lurking
very noble of you.
Posted 19 February 2006 - 11:54 AM
Where's everybody else? This has almost turned into a Chat session between H3 and I...
Posted 19 February 2006 - 12:01 PM
in a flood/earthquake/storm situation
as they will likely be forced into it eventually.
might be stranded far from home, too, as you mention.
all valid points,
but being able to counter-track enemies is
pretty low on the skills-to-learn priority list
in those situations.
and events like katrina aren't common,
at least not yet.
many factors conspired there, after the storm,
to make a bad situation even worse.
i think we all would do well to give some
serious thought about what went on there,
esp. our urban friends.
i think i'd almost rather be dumped naked in the ozark mountains
than to have lived in the 9th ward,
my odds of survival could not have been much worse.