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Hi. I logged onto this site after purchasing some of the companies publications. I don't really know where to start but basicall

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  • Hi. I logged onto this site after purchasing some of the companies publications. I don't really know where to start but basicall

    Hi. I logged onto this site after purchasing some of the companies publications. I don't really know where to start but basically I am a very clean cut, suit wearing, slightly out of shape, 19 year old guy. I am not an outdoorsy type at all. I've never been hunting, seldom gone fishing and only camped in a RV. That being said I have always had an interest in survival. I like the idea of being prepared and I like the idea of being able to live off the land. I have a bug out bag and have always felt very safe because of it but lately I have been thinking about it and realised that just because I have read a few books and have the eqiuptment beneficial to survival does not mean that I have the skills necessary to do so. I would like to know how one would begin to make the transition from materialistic, high maintanence type to becoming a outdoorsman and a survivalist. I am already planning on going camping, learning to hunt, fish, and other thing like that. I just wanted to know if anyone had any advice for someone who didn't grow up learning these skills but instead has to alter their current lifestyle?

  • #2
    Well, I was raised in the good old days and I have to tell you even after years of being in the woods it would still get to me the first couple of nights in the wilderness alone. It takes a lot of willpower to stick it out. I don't do the living off the land gig but I used to spend weeks alone in the bush in a wall tent with just my dog for company. Start with getting used to being alone in the wilderness for two nights. If you can work your way up to a week with some amenities then start thinking about something more spartan if that's your thing. But get used to living with just yourself before you jump into the survival thing. Overcome that first. If you can't then maybe the survival thing is not for you.

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    • #3
      The late Jeff Cooper once listed the skills a young man should master by age 21 that included riding a motorcycle and flying a light aircraft. He omitted swimming and cooking, but I would rate them higher in importance for your purposes.
      Good luck with your self-improvement project. I think you have a good attitude.

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      • #4
        It is really cool that you are willing to step away from "materialistic, high maintenance type" and give the outdoors lifestyle a shot. It is, in my opinion, much more satisfying.
        As for ways to learn: practice. Really there is no way around that.
        In order to not get discouraged your first time out, you should make friends with (if you haven't already) somebody that really knows what they are talking about who can go with you and show you the ropes. Stick close to them, and allow them to teach you. There is a lot of info to take in, but don't get discouraged by that. If you have someone that can teach you, is patient, and really knows what they are talking about; that is the way to go.
        Beyond that, yah, just the same as OH said. Get used to spending time alone in the great outdoors. There is immense beauty to enjoy out there for those willing to see it. Silence and time are key to doing so.

        P.S: Glean from this sight. There is much knowledge represented here, and an incredible resource for anybody be they beginners or seasoned outdoors-men.

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        • #5
          The romance of living off the land is certainly attractive. However, the romance wears out quick if you are ever in a situation where your life depends on your outdoor skills. Keep in mind that many survival skills are illegal to practice (snares, dead-fall traps, etc.). Other than that, practice in controlled settings. Don't ever intentionally put yourself in a survival situation. It takes years to become an expert in survival, so don't expect instantaneous results.

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          • #6
            If you really want to learn survival, you could join the military and attend SEAR School or an Escape and Evation School. Like was said before, make friends with people who have the outdoor skills you are looking for. There are many Rod and Gun type clubs across the country that would enjoy having you as a member, as well as helping you achieve your goals. I wish you luck.

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            • #7
              Go right to archery hunting. Although it is more difficult I think that you will find some of what you are looking for more quickly. Its so much more basic and natural. I wish you luck, just take is easy on yourself and you will be good.

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              • #8
                Welcome aboard. Anyone who enjoys the outdoors will probably find useful information here, but there's no replacement for experience so the recommendation to learn from those who are more knowledgeable is valid, and it's a lifelong process as you encounter different environments and situations, but enjoy the process. I agree, military training is very good and those lessons will last a lifetime, but I learned valuable lessons before I wore a uniform, and I suspect you will also. Continue to study, and put those lessons into practice on day-trips and weekends with folks who have similar interests. Time is on your side; enjoy the process!

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                • #9
                  Welcome to the website. There's lots of good information here and some good humor as well.

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                  • #10
                    Start with simple tasks such as going without tv, radio, computers, electric coffee makers, etc for a few days first. It is something that you can do in the safety of your home, but you will soon find that these comforts are hard to do without. Just walking over to a switch on the wall and suddenly having light is pretty darn nice. Originally, having to live off the land is what prompted our ancestors to advance to the point where we are with the comforts of today. But our ancestors did live off the land and did survive thus you can too but it is an acquired skill set. Just take small steps and learn the arts of starting a fire without fancy aids, learning what is poisonous to touch or eat from the wild, and what is safe to drink. Finding or building shelter from the elements is another necessary skill set. Just choosing a SAFE place to set up a tent is an acquired skill. Food is plentiful if you know how to find it and prepare it. Both cleaning fish and skinning animals along with cooking them over an open fire is another acquired skill set. Just remember that life itself is all a learning experience because you learn something new each day. Just channel a lot of your learning toward survival and you will do just fine.

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                    • #11
                      By posting this question on this website you’re making an excellent start. The people on this site are very helpful and have experience in the great outdoors. If I were you I would join a gun club or a hunting club. I met my best hunting and fishing friend at a gun club. Read outdoor books and magazines like Field and Stream. The Fish and Wildlife Department in your state will also give you plenty of information about the sport of fishing and hunting.
                      Best of Luck!

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                      • #12
                        First turn off your TV. If you can a few weeks with out TV, you might be able to do it. TV is a fount of mis-information.

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                        • #13
                          Pick something to give you direction. for example if camping appeals to you start slow with a campground, your backyard or local camping area. You can gradually build the skills you need and being completely new will gain knowledge quickly. If its fishing just start with bluegills they are a lot of fun. If hunting try squirrels or doe and you will quickly find a lot of fun. If you want to learn to shoot most people at your local range will be dying to teach a newcomer how to shoot. Unlike competitive sports and work the outdoors are more about the journey and the learning along the way than success at killing or sleeping comfortably. I quit skiing when I mastered it, I still haven't gotten close to being successful every hunting season and that is the great appeal of outdoor activities. For survival, learning to camp hunt or fish will teach you all you need, plus its a positive non fear based approach to preparing for the worst, by doing something enjoyable.

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                          Welcome to Field and Streams's Answers section. Here you will find hunting, fishing, and survival tips from the editors of Field and Stream, as well as recommendations from readers like yourself.

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