Fire by hand drill

Fire by hand drill

Monday, 21 May 2012

N.I Scouts Survival weekend with Bear Grylls

Hi all,

Last year Northern Ireland Survival School was honoured to be asked to attend a survial weekend with the entire Northern Ireland Scout movment (1500 people approximatly). It was top secret and we were not allowed to mention it because bear Grylls was coming across.

Anyway we were more than happy to donate our time to something like this and attended a number of meetings to help set the event up.

So now the weekend has passed and we got about 2.5 hours sleep. Scouts do not sleep at camp   apparently.

We set up a camp and basically scouts called by throughout the weekend. They took part in whatever we were doing at the time from gutting rabbits to fire by friction to shelter building to arrow making.

I think they all really enjoyed it immensly.

When Bear arrived he came by our camp especially to thank us for volunteering our time to help out and chatted to us about various things. He was a very charming and humble guy.

One group of scouts had decided to build a full on survial shelter with all natural materials. Perhaps the only ones.(the rest used black polythene to make shelters of various shapes and sizes which were all brilliant.) We make a point of mentioning this to the head scout who then told Bear. The scouts got a personal visit from the main man himself.

Anyway a great event to be involved in and we look forward to the next one.

Just as we were packing up we got presented with a scout badge each as a thanks for attending which was a great touch!

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Neo-Traditional Woodsmanship

A fantastic concept and a fantastic phrase too. I came across this on the blog below. Go and have a read of the original article. Very good indeed.

Ranging, Pathfinding, Bushcraft & Survival Notes

Thursday, 3 May 2012

A plant walk with an expert

I was very lucky to get out for an hours walk with a real plant expert.

She made me promise I wouldn't touch the nettles which she called jaggies.

A gathering

A few NI bushcraft lads got together at the weekend for some tracking practise.

Here is a few photos that my friend Davy took.

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Making a well


If you have the time, energy and proper conditions you can dig a small well to supply your water needs.

You need to find an area where water has saturated into the ground. A marsh, near a pond or as I did last time near a river.

Also make sure the ground is not polluted or discoloured.

The part of a river that you can see is not all of the water. The water seeps into the ground on either side and is at a similar level for a considerable distance.

Soil is made up of pores which water and air can pass through.

You travel back from the water source until you get solid ground then dig down to the water table.

All of a sudden water will seep from the walls of your hole and fill it to the general water level of the area. Water levels change drastically from day to day.

In this particular well I dug down a foot and got water, the next day I had to dig down a further 6 inches to reach water because it had not rained and the water table had lowered.

Once you hit water you will find that it is very cloudy from the ground being disturbed. No problem let it settle for a few hours and come back. The top few inches will be clear. This water has been filtered through many tons of earth and roots and organic material so is much cleaner than standing water for example. Of course you should boil it anyway to be safe as a dose of the squirts can ruin a good trip.

You can improve your well by trimming all the roots etc that poke out and smoothing the sides of the well to stop soil dropping in. You can also line it with sticks.

Lastly make sure the well is covered well with no gaps. I once found a dead mouse in mine, the poor bugger had drown but at least he was well hydrated with ground filtered water!!!!!

Badger bones

I came across this poor old fellow in a local wood. His bones had been picked clean but were still fresh or green. The bones especially the front leg bones are very stout and dense from digging. There was even some fur nearby. No skull was present. It was probably carried off by a fox

The marrow was still tinged pink and smelt fresh.

These types of bones can be used for all sorts from needles to fish gorges to awls. Use it green as when it is too old it is too brittle.

I am not sure what killed this badger but I hope it was old age.