Lanterns: Lesson Two: How Make A Shelter

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Lesson Two: How Make A Shelter

In part one I discussed different ways to build a fire.  In this lesson, I'll teach you how to make a shelter in an emergency.

Imagine the following scenario:  You take your family out for a day hike at Mount Rushmore.  You're having a great time. As you're hiking along, you look up at the sky and notice it looking little dark.  You tell yourself that you will be okay, as you stop for a quick family picnic.

Time gets away from you, and your attention is quickly broken from your family and up towards the sky.  You start to clean up and as you stuff everything back into your bag, a big crash of lightning hits in the area and your children start to panic. You tell your family it will be okay, and to just grab what they can and double time it back to the car.  Since you only planned a day trip, you don't have a shelter in your bag. The storm is starting to intensify, and you realize you need to take cover and find shelter.

This is what I call the worst case scenario that can happen and lucky for you, I am here to help by showing you how to build that life-saving shelter. 

Shelter is one of the most important things for survival during an off grid situation.  The rule of three 3’s is a good place to start. You can only survive without shelter for three hours, water for three days, and food for three weeks.  

Shelter is very important for survival, and depending on the weather conditions it can determine how long you survive.  For example, during the winter, you may only survive a matter of minutes before freezing to death without shelter. On the other hand, during the summer you could survive a couple of days without shelter.  

A shelter is anything that can be used to protect you from the elements like scorching heat from the sun to the absolute freezing temperatures of the subzero cold.  It can be as simple as a hammock between two trees in the rainforest, to an igloo on frozen tundra. You can make a shelter out of anything you can find that is either natural materials to man-made materials.  

There are three types of shelters that I will go over. The first is a tent which you can purchase ahead of time. It's important to make sure it is big enough for you, your family, equipment, and tools.  You also want to make sure it is simple to setup. You should practice setting it up during both day and night.  This way you have the confidence to set it up in any situation.  

The second type is a fly or tarp which is just a simple piece of waterproof material that can be setup in a matter of seconds. All that is needed is a tarp, paracord, and something to tie it to like a tree or other structure.  

The third is what is called the natural lean-to shelter.  This shelter is made up of materials you find in nature.  Start by finding two main parts that I'll call "the pillar and backbone."  These make up the skeletal frame.  Next, place shorter slicks on the side all along the length of the backbone.  Afterward, cover the shelter with leaves which will help with rain and will act like insulation for warmth.

Here is a video of mine that covers each type of shelter and how to set them up. 

Curt Andrews

The Second Amendment Advocate and Avid Cyclist

Written by Curt Andrews

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