It’s not about the equipment

Bushcraft is the ability  to adapt and survive in the wilderness with the  resources available by acquiring the skills and knowledge to do so. It’s about working successfully with what you have and thriving off of it from sheer ingenuity and talent, not gear and equipment. Most people focus on the gear aspect and pay little attention to the acquisition of the skills or their practice.

The USMC have a saying, “adapt, improvise and overcome”. The most effective tool you will ever bring out in the wild is knowledge and experience. The more knowledge you gather, the more skills you pick up and the more you apply them, the less gear and gadgets you will need. And that is the craft.

What good is a compass if you don’t know how to use it? That $100 knife is no good if you can’t baton firewood or make feather sticks. Gear is nice, but if you don’t know how to use it what is the point?

Primitive man  did fine without using a ferro rod. The Sioux endured harsh winters in the Dakotas wearing nothing but deer skin. Indigenous tribes of Australia, Africa, South America and Oceania have virtually nothing as far as modern knives, sleeping bags, back packs or  filtration tubes are concerned, however their survival skills are unmatched by none.

Learn how to construct a shelter and set up a camp. Work on your knife skills. Practice tying various knots and how to use cordage. Be able to identify plants, herbs, berries and trees. Be proficient in navigation and tracking. Be able to read and predict weather conditions. Learn how to set traps, hunt and fish. Put an emphasis on fire building.

This is fundamental  Bushcraft. These skills take time to learn, but they are skills you can build on. With a bit of practice and application you will lessen your reliance on glorified camping gear.

 

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