You can find an enormous amount of blogs and YouTube videos out there by preppers talking about the need to have "Bushcraft" skills after an SHTF event so I wanted to take a moment and discuss this topic because I continually get asked questions about it.
What do I mean by bushcraft? Bushcraft is a popular term for wilderness survival skills.
Ok, so do I believe that bushcraft skills are necessary to have to survive after an SHTF event? Yes, and No.
Yes, bushcraft skills may be necessary to have for someone that does not have common sense, which by looking at today's world may be a very large number of people. That does not however mean that if you do not posess bushcraft skills you can not survive after a disaster.
There are a few basic bushcraft skills that are a good idea to know, but they are not necessarily essential to your survival if you are prepared to handle the situation in other ways.
Bushcraft teaches you numerous ways to make fire, for instance by rubbing two sticks together, or using a bow drill, or using a flint and steel. But what if you don't know bushcraft, does that mean that you can't make fire? Well, possibly, if you were a complete idiot and did not stockpile a good supply of Bic lighters, or waterproof matches.
There are much easier ways to create fire these days than rubbing two sticks together, and it doesnt have to be complicated. On a sunny day it can be as easy as using a magnifying glass or clear bottle of water to focus the energy of the sun onto a small spot to create enough heat to start a fire.
If you have common sense and use it when preparing for disasters you will have a large supply of firestarting methods that do not require you to act like a caveman to accomplish the task.
One of my favorites since my days in the Marine Corps is my trusty Zippo lighter. The Zippo was designed to be a reliable means of starting a fire back in World War II, and quite a lot of those lighters produced way back then are still around and are completely functional today. They are prized posessions of collectors around the world. I have about a dozen Zippo lighters myself, a couple of which were produced durring the war.
A Zippo lighter is very versitile, it is made to burn lighter fluid, but in an emergency it can burn gasoline, or kerosine. It was designed to be able to use whatever fuel was available to a soldier on the battlefield.
Bic lighters are another readily available means of starting a fire. I have two cases of Bic lighters in my disaster supplies ready to go. While someone else is searching for the right sticks, string and block of wood or small log to create a bow drill to start a fire with I will just reach in my pocket and use a lighter that I used common sense and packed.
A lot of preppers have this fantastical idea that an SHTF event will suddenly thrust us into a "Mad Max" world where we have to invent fire and the wheel all over again as if you were suddenly thrust onto a deserted island alone and you had to survive with nothing but what you had in your pockets.
The majority of the population will only find themselves in such a situation in their immaginations, yet people around the world suddenly believe that this is what it means to live in a post SHTF world.
Even in a situation where civilization around the world suddenly came to an end and 90% of the world population were suddenly gone, there would still be plenty of Bic and Zippo lighters around to start a fire with.
Instead of spending all of your time worrying about learning bushcraft skills that you will more than likely never find yourself in a situation where they will have to be used, start using some common sense in your disaster preparedness plans.
Common sense can get you through any situation, and that includes surviving after an SHTF event.
Until Next Time
Aloha & 73 from Hawaii