So, the unspeakable has happened, and you are stuck overnight in the outdoors. Whether you’ve been lost in the woods while hiking, car broke down while hunting, get caught in a storm or the zombie apocalypse has occurred you’re going to need to go into survival mode.
Make no doubt about it; you are going to feel overwhelmed. However, as long as you remain calm and follow your wilderness survival training you’ll be okay.
First 24 Hours in Outdoor Survival
In outdoor survival, the first 24 hours will often mean the difference upon whether or not you live or die. Please realize that every wilderness survival situation will be different. So, based on the circumstances, you may need to change the guidelines that are listed below. For example, as you could sleep in your truck, you may not need to build a shelter if you’re truck breaks down when you are hunting or fishing. So, here are the general guidelines for surviving the first 24 hours:
Survival Rule of 3
The following is a well-known survival maxim that’ll help you when you are in survival mode
- 3 Minutes without air or submerged in freezing water
- 3 Hours without shelter in Arctic temperatures
- 3 Days without water or less if you aren’t protected from severe weather. (This includes hot environments and even extreme cold
- 3 Weeks With no food. This is based on the assumption that you have water and shelter
First 24 Hours
As mentioned earlier, this list below is applicable 90% of the time. However, weather, terrain, time of day and available resources will determine what needs to be done first. For example, if you are in sub-freezing temperatures you’ll need to get shelter first. Take into account the “Survival Rule of 3” and you should be okay.
So, for the first 24 hours do the below:
(1) Build Emergency Shelter-either tent, tarp or natural materials, click here for more information.
(2) Fire-ideally you should have waterproof matches or other fire starting
(3) Water-be sure you treat it, click here for a great video on water treatment.
(4) Signaling-if you are able, this should be your first priority. You never know when you could be found.
The next article will go into the next 48 hours in wilderness survival. This is when you’ll need to prepare for the worst, but hope for the best.