Survival Essentials – What You Need to Know

Survival kits can be an invaluable asset in emergency wilderness situations, including tools and supplies for warmth/shelter/first aid/food/lighting/communication.

Some kits are wearable and include tools, like paracord bracelets with firestarters or whistles woven inside; other tools, like duct tape or safety pins, serve multiple functions.


Water is one of the most vital items to have when faced with an emergency or being lost; therefore, hydrating immediately should be your top priority in such circumstances. Without it, dehydration sets in quickly – making a difference between life and death in an emergency scenario.

Finding freshwater naturally is always the easiest and cheapest way to secure water supply, and streams and rivers are ideal because their rapid current prevents bacteria from breeding in still waters such as lakes or ponds (though be wary of viruses or protozoa in those sources). In arid climates, however, survival manuals recommend searching out “crotches” of tree limbs or crevices in rocks where moisture collects.

Survival experts often advise bringing water to boil in order to purify it in emergency situations, as boiling can eliminate most bacteria and organisms that might present health threats such as Giardia or other serious gastrointestinal illnesses.

Your bug out bag should also contain portable water filters or purification tablets for emergencies, which will save time in searching for clean drinking water in the wilderness and provide assurances of quality drinking water. Iodine tablets can also provide an effective alternative to boiling – particularly effective in colder climates where other methods might not work as efficiently. Katadyn offers excellent portable filters known as MyBottle microfilters while Portable Aqua has handy iodine tablets designed specifically to be carried along during survival situations.


Beginning a fire can be one of the most valuable survival skills. Starting fires allows you to prepare food, stay warm, ward off predators, sterilize equipment or wounds and protect yourself against predators. In case of emergency situations or survival situations, having some form of tinder and means for starting it (flint and steel or WetFire products are great ways to start one quickly) in your survival kit is crucial for survival.

Fire not only provides warmth and illumination, but it is also integral for purifying water. Lakes and streams contain numerous bacteria and viruses which can make people very ill or even lead to their deaths; by boiling the water over a fire you can kill these harmful organisms and make the drinkable water safe to drink again.

Start and maintain a fire so that it provides light for navigation and to signal for help if needed. Signal lights, mirrors, whistles and three fires in a triangle are recognized distress signals which could alert people nearby who could come rescue you.

There are other essential survival items, but those equipped with knowledge and tools for building fire are more likely to survive most situations. Finding water, shelter, and the ability to start a fire are the three primary objectives. Without these essential supplies you are far more likely to become part of a natural disaster statistic or survival scenario; learning survival skills increases your odds of making it through intact.


Without being trained survivalists, it’s highly unlikely that most of us could survive for an extended period in nature without shelter of some form. Shelter provides protection from the elements such as rain or snow as well as insulation against colder temperatures. In addition, it provides morale-boosting qualities in times of chaos by giving a sense of security from being protected in an otherwise dangerous situation. It may also serve to store food and water safely away from being damaged or consumed by animals.

Shelter is so essential to survival in an emergency that it should be considered one of four basic needs, alongside water, fire and food. A proper shelter can increase your odds of surviving an outdoor trip considerably so prioritizing this aspect when planning your wilderness adventure is a must. Check out the 10 things you need to survive no matter what disaster or emergency you encounter in the wild.

A complete survival kit should include shelter, knives, water and food supplies as well as some first-aid supplies and an effective method for communicating with others if separated from your group. A solar oven like Solavore Sport is also an invaluable way to cook food quickly while pasteurizing water for drinking during an emergency situation.

As this list is in no way comprehensive, it provides a good starting point to consider what survival gear will be necessary for your outdoor adventure. When planning your survival trip, gradually add items to your kit until it provides everything necessary for any situation that might arise during your travels – this not only saves money but ensures that any emergency situations that might arise during your adventure can be addressed promptly and successfully.

First Aid

First aid is an integral component of survival situations. Without it, an injured person’s condition could quickly deteriorate into something serious and lead to their death. Knowing first aid allows you to quickly stabilize an injured victim until medical professionals arrive as well as remain calm in assessing a situation so you can be as helpful to those around you as possible.

First aid kits often include materials like gauze, sterile dressings and bandages; however, without proper training to learn their use properly you could easily end up making matters worse by bleeding excessively or risking infection. With some simple training you could quickly be learning how to clean and dress wounds effectively reducing bleeding while decreasing infection risks.

First aid’s primary objective is to preserve life. Immediate care may make all the difference for those choking, suffering heart attacks, or experiencing allergic reactions – knowing proper first aid can also provide invaluable support for friends or family who are suffering.

First aid courses provide invaluable skills that are useful both inside and outside the workplace, including knowing how to administer basic first aid to babies, children, and elderly in case of emergencies. This knowledge is especially essential for early childhood workers and educators as well as outdoor instructors/adventure enthusiasts/scout leaders who spend much of their time outside – it will equip them with all of the knowledge needed to care for themselves and others should something go amiss! For people spending time in remote or isolated areas it will show them how best to care for themselves if something goes amiss – this knowledge is especially invaluable!


Effective communication in survival situations can make all the difference for team members. It enables them to coordinate actions, share information and make decisions together as a group while solving problems and maintaining morale. If you’re preparing for an emergency, having backup communication channels between family and friends is crucial for survival.

Some prepper believe cell phones will be the best means of communication in an emergency situation, but other methods can prove just as helpful. Walkie talkies and CB radios can keep in touch even when power fails; you could also purchase radios that use Morse code so that only people who understand your code can hear you.

Whistles can also be useful tools in signaling for rescue without drawing undue attention to yourself. Furthermore, learning how to signal with smoke and mirrors may draw the attention of planes overhead so they can assist if you become lost in wilderness terrain or disaster strikes and require evacuation.

Communications skills in survival situations such as storms and national crises can save your life. Take some time with loved ones to plan what would happen if traditional communication methods failed, including escape routes and meeting points in advance. Two-way radios offer great ways of staying in contact with those closest to you while also being programmed for use under EMP conditions.