Recommended Survival geaR list for our courses
Survival skills in the wild are very much reliant upon creativity and the survival gear available at hand. Below we have provided a list of the recommended equipment for all of our survival courses.
- Fixed blade high carbon steel knife. The Swiss army multi-tool knife with the saw feature is also a good option
- Water bottle (Kleen Canteen is a good option as it is stainless steel and unlined so good for boiling in)
- cup/bowl and spoon
- Headlamp, Gloves (optional), Camera, Notepad, and Pen
- Clothing: Warm layers, beanie, wool socks, and rain coat
- Shelter: Please bring either a tarp, waterproof bivy sack, or tent
- Sleeping: Please bring either a sleeping Bag or wool blanket for warmth. A foam mat/pad can be brought for comfort if you choose. Hammocks are a great option however this is only recommended for warmer months
- Food: dehydrated, freeze dried, or anything similar that requires only boiling water or minimal cooking
Please scroll down for recommended brands that we have thoroughly tested and endorse...
Survival training will test clothing ruthlessly, and that is why durability is just as important as warmth. Your clothes are your primary shelter so make sure they will hold up in the worst conditions. Here are some pointers when choosing your clothes...
Dress in Layers...
Base Layer: Polyester or wool are the common choice. This layer must be form fitting and moisture wicking. I recommend wool as it is comfortable, does not lose it's insulation properties when wet, and does not burn as easily as synthetic fibers do. Wool doesn't seem to hold onto those nasty body odors either, Nothing worse than 4 day old crotch stink! Wool socks are always a must! Ensure that your base layers are always a snug fit to maximize warmth.
Insulation Layer: This is your warm layer. Polyester (Fleece) is affordable and available everywhere. Goose down sweaters are very effective and super lightweight however expensive, easily snag on foliage and loses all its insulation properties when wet. It is just about impossible to dry in the field. Wool is also a good choice for insulation. This layer should be form fitting but not as snug as the base layer, moisture wicking, and preferably a wind breaker.
Outer Shell: You need this layer for protection from the elements, so wind and rain proof. Nylon is the most common material used however make sure that this layer is breathable! Gore-Tex is the best choice for this layer. All the above mentioned burn easily. Canvas is the best but not the most comfortable.
Footwear: Some of us don't like wearing shoes too much but for the ones that do...There are too many good brands of boots to mention however go with boots that have at least 6 inch high ankle protection and must be fully waterproof. Once again gore-tex is the material you are looking for. Most importantly purchase boots that fit right and are comfortable. Hiking downhill with footwear that is too tight or loose will hammer your toes. Make sure that there are no tabs, loose stitching or any rough material around the heel area, that will certainly cause blisters at some point. If you prefer the barefoot way then check out Xero shoes, they make minimalist style sandals utilizing ultra thin soles, we use these more than any other footwear.
- Morakniv companion carbon steel knife
- Esee 6 knife
- Swiss army trekker pocket knife with locking blade
- CRKT "half chance" and "chance in hell" machete's
- Bahco laplander folding saw
- Klean kanteen 40 oz stainless unlined water bottle
- Stainless 25 oz cup
- Kanteens and containers by self reliance outfitters
- Down filled sleeping bags
- Gore-tex army bivy sack
- wool blankets
- Hennessy hammocks
- Hennessy hex-fly tarp
- Thermarest Z-lite sol mat
Practical choices are Military MRE's(Meals Ready to Eat) which are available online or at your nearest army surplus. They are precooked and have heat packs to warm up the meals. Backpacker style meals are freeze dried meals which only require boiling water to re-hydrate, and they actually taste good. Backpackers Pantry and Mountain house are some of the brands and tend to be more on the healthy side than MRE's. There are also survival bars which are vacuum packed and ready to eat such as mainstay which are calorie loaded and funny enough actually taste good. Cheaper options are Raman style noodles, jerky, fruit, nuts, etc...These are all practical meals as they can be prepared quickly.