Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Winter Survival Tips

One of the good things about being with Great Lake Survival is that the friends and family of this company actually get out in the wilderness to practice their survival skills on a regular basis.  It would be easy to sit behind the computer screen all the time.  Although it takes discipline to continually get out and practice what you know . . . it helps us keep grounded.  Not to mention staying out in the bush keeps giving us things to write about :)
Winter Survival Tips
(some of these tips we've had funny stories with, some of them more serious stories)
1.  Listen to your teammates:  When 3 guys on a 4 man team are telling you important task "X" would be better done by doing A instead of B (and if you screw up on B it costs your whole team a lot of work), it would pay to listen to the team.  After all, if you willingly go far enough into the bush to need a chopper out if someone gets hurt, you better trust the people you're with enough to listen to them.
2.  Sizing up the situation? Ever heard a coach say, "you will play in the game, the way you practice on the field". Constantly goofing off, or wasting energy, because it's just training . . . well that's not smart. Every time we go into winter survival training - it IS a survival situation. Weather can change an easy going training session into a butt-kicker in no time, let alone adding an injured team member into the mix.
3.  Have purpose in the morning:  During winter training, in the morning getting out of the bag and lean to is a dangerous time.  Usually everything is still bitterly cold, one's internal furnace is starving for food so that it can produce warmth.  The hands and feet will freeze up a lot quicker than usual.  There's a short period of time once the frozen boots are on to get a fire going, get hot liquids going or get moving if you need to bug out.  It's a mistake to get out of the sack without a purpose and sense of urgency.  It usually is a mistake only made once though.  Hypothermia is a B! 
4.  Sno-seal leather boots:  It's inexpensive, it works, it keeps your leather flexible and dry.  When the temp dumps really low, wet boots freeze up, so that the next morning it's like trying to get on a glass vase over the feet.  Sno-seal will keep leather pack boots from getting saturated with wet snow, keeping them flexible.
5.  Void the bladder before bed:  Some of the best advice we've ever heard.  Getting out of the bag in the middle of the night wastes energy.  Urinals make the risk of getting urine in the bag . . .
6.  Get some Wiggy's gear:  Wiggy's brand outdoor gear is pretty darn good stuff.  Boots, Sleeping bags, Gloves, Coats, Ground pads and Sweaters.  Wiggy's gear is insulated with Lamilite, which insulates even when wet, better than anything on the planet.  It wicks water like no other.  Seriously it's awesome stuff.  If you have to be in the bitterly cold, do it with Wiggy's by your side.  Trust us, we've tested the snot out of their products. 
Hopefully your winter survival training gives you some nuggets of wisdom to share.  If you get out to test your skills, God bless ya.

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