Go Back  HuntingNet.com Forums > General Hunting Forums > Big Game Hunting
Survival - when things don't go "as planned" >

Survival - when things don't go "as planned"

Big Game Hunting Moose, elk, mulies, caribou, bear, goats, and sheep are all covered here.

Survival - when things don't go "as planned"

Old 03-04-2010, 10:15 PM
Nontypical Buck
Thread Starter
charlie brown's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Crescent Valley, NV
Posts: 2,271
Default Survival - when things don't go "as planned"

I have not seen a thread like this for quite some time, so I figured I would put one up, and "remind" everyone what the wilds can bring.

I have been constantly improving, reorganzing, experimenting, practicing, etc. for the last 12 years with different back packs, fire starters, saws, knives, etc, etc, etc to try and get the right combination of "stuff" to be able to "survive" if I needed to...

I am glad I had practiced all that, and it all came together Janurary 3, 2010.

I lion hunt with hounds, and spend most of the winter chasing them, mostly by myself. I have subscribed to "SPOT" but the subscription ran out, so I did not have it that day, but I have since renewed it.

On Jan 3, I decided to go on a "normal" hunt.

I went into a cayon I frequent and found what I thought was a pretty fresh track. I turned all 5 hounds loose, and they took to it like a drug dealer to dirty money. I thought for sure they would have the cat caught in no time. That was at 730 AM. I loaded up my pack, and started after them.

3 hours later, I was over looking a canyon, probably 3 miles from the truck through knee to waist deep snow. I could hear two dogs barking, but could not hear the other three. I decided to go down into the canyon and see why my lead dog was in one spot for so long.

When I was going down, I got my foot caught, tripped, and landed hard with my left knee on a rock. It was not broken, but I thought I was going to pass out.

I managed to get down to my two barking dogs. The pup was trailing deer, and the lead dog had regained the lion track. I followed him for about an hour with the pup in tow. I was still not able to put full weight on my left leg, but I managed to get to where I could see my dog, and took a good break.

Pretty soon, it was close to noon, and I still had not seen the other three dogs, and my lead dog was over a mile away cold trailing that lion.

I could still not put a lot of weight on my leg, so I started for the bottom of the canyon. I got near the flats, and started south towards the other canyon, going back to the truck. At a little before sunset, I was still about 3-4 miles from the truck. I stopped and made a fire under a burned out tree. I heated some water, and ate a couple packs of instant oatmeal. Before it got dark, I checked my bearings with a compass. After I rested for a while, I packed up and started out. I managed for about 1 1/2 hours before I had to start another fire. I got one going, dried out, and started out again.

This time, I only was able to go about 1/2 hour. I found a nice cedar tree with a few dead ones around it and made "camp."

It was 900 PM. At 1030, my lead dog showed up. He trailed me and the pup out a LONG way. I kept a fire going all night, and was able to get a few cat naps along the way.

The next morning, about sunrise, I got my bearings again, and headed out. I was only about 3/4 of a mile from a ranch, and made it there. The hand gave me a ride the last mile or so up to my truck.

At noon, I got two dogs back, not too far from where I turned loose. At 1230, I got my last dog back, and headed home.

I posted this story, because I hope people can learn from others. Fortunately for me, I have practiced with everything I had, and knew how it worked. I maintained a proper attitude, and survived the night. I probably made a couple mistakes, namely walking after dark, and not staying put the first time, but that is 6 one way, half a dozen the other I figure.

I want to also post my gear list so people know what I carry, and can have some ideas.

I figure if one person learns something from this post, and survives because of it, then I have succeeded.

Here is my gear. I had all of this with the exception of the tarp. On that night, I did not have the tarp, but only some throw away ponchos, which I think are junk.

Eberlestock X2 back pack (which will pack a good deal of weight also)
Two nalgene water bottles (bladders in the summer time)
Military canteen cup
Toilet paper
Oatmeal packets in canteen cup
Granola bars
Extra socks
Extra gloves
Extra hoodie
Rope, approximately 50 ft, various diameters
Flashlight, and headlamp, with extra batteries
Carbon fire starters with birds nest and flint and steel
Cotton balls soaked in vasoline
Small first aid kit
Medical and electrical tape rolls
Wyoming Saw, Wyomine knife, cutco knife, gerber tool, pocket knife
Emergency blanket, and disposable poncho
5x7 tarp
Water pur tabs (water filter in the summer)

This is my daypack that I carry when hunting anything.

Depending on exactly what I am hunting, I may have a few animal specific items also.

I hope this helps, and maybe the mods can make this a sticky?



Last edited by charlie brown; 03-04-2010 at 10:18 PM.
charlie brown is offline  
Old 03-05-2010, 10:22 AM
Typical Buck
rather_be_huntin's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Cedar Valley Utah
Posts: 977

Nice post Charlie and glad you made it out ok. This is great reminder of how easily we can find ourselves in a bad situation.

I like you list and for I would add:


Lighter (Nice to use over matches)

Wax Tipped Matches (I see you had matches but I dip mine in melted candle wax to water proof them)

Radio (I always carry one that picks up weather reports and I figure I may be able to call for help on different frequencies since lots of people carry them now days)

Small Baggy of Treats (In a survival situation some tootsie rolls, small salt and pepper packets to choke down what ever you find to eat, and some water flavoring containing electrolytes, some ibuprofen, and calcium tablets for heartburn, and some pills for diarrhea can go along ways. This one isn't critical bad I think it can make a bad situation a little better and doesn't take up a lot of space.)
rather_be_huntin is offline  
Old 03-05-2010, 10:52 AM
Typical Buck
genesis27:3's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: 30 miles from park city UT on 1,500 acres.
Posts: 884

Here is somethin you could add to your kit it is water proof and it fits in your pocket plus it takes about two minutes to put together. Here is the link...http://www.huntingnet.com/forum/hunt...vival-kit.html
genesis27:3 is offline  
Old 03-05-2010, 12:29 PM
Nontypical Buck
Thread Starter
charlie brown's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Crescent Valley, NV
Posts: 2,271

GPS - after I get my AR 15 off of layaway, finish my lion hide from last winter, get a windshield in my truck and get new tires. I figure I have gone this long without one, I can go a little while longer. I am not sure if I really want one, then I will REALLY know how far I walk. It will either make me realize my estimation sucks, or cause me to faint, lol

Lighter - Not fond of them in my pack. I had a zippo but took it out after a while. It leaked and made every thing stink. That was several years ago, and haven't had one since. I was always afraid of a disposable one breaking in my pack.

Wax-tipped matches - I have done that, and kept them in a water proof container, I agree it does work, need to get some wax and do it again.

Radio - only a two way radio if I am hunting with someone. I figure its not worth the extra weight if I am hunting alone. Besides, I can't trust what the weather stations say it is going to do anyway, and the weather hasn't stopped me from going out in the past. I just prepare for the worst. I also have that SPOT which will send my coordinates to people I know will come help if I need it. I have not had it NOT send a message yet. But I still go prepared in case it does fail. I also tell people where I am going, and they know how long I can survive if I have to.

Treats - Thats why I have the granola bars. If I remember I will throw in a snicker's bar or something also, or some jolly ranchers or what have you.

Genesis - I saw that. It doesn't really have much use for me if I have my pack with me. I am putting one together that fits in a little bigger pouch that has a few more things in it and I can put on my belt.



Last edited by charlie brown; 03-05-2010 at 12:33 PM.
charlie brown is offline  
Old 03-05-2010, 09:06 PM
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: South San Francisco
Posts: 48

I like the way you think, Charlie. For the first X-number of years of hunting we never worried about getting stuck out for the night. Back then we always hunted as a group of at least 4 or more. Everybody knew where each other was. All of my hunting partners have either moved away or passed away so now I hunt alone. So now I carry a small pack with similar items just in case. Keep up the good habits, it has already paid off for you. Good hunting.
NorCal is offline  
Old 03-05-2010, 09:22 PM
Giant Nontypical
Sheridan's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 5,130

Good reminder;

Question: What do you carry in your pack ?

Answer: Everything I need to spend the night.....................if necessary !
Sheridan is offline  
Old 03-05-2010, 09:40 PM
Nontypical Buck
SWThomas's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Camp Lejeune, NC
Posts: 3,869

I'm definitely going to bookmark this thread and refer to it when I retire in Utah. There are many backpack journey's in my future.
SWThomas is offline  
Old 03-06-2010, 03:21 PM
Typical Buck
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 679

i hunt in northern QUEBEC [caribou] and use a GPS ...don't care spending the night with wolves and black bears ...last fall i shot a black bear at 25 ft ...too close for comfort... i will not hunt without a GPS ...
heinz57 is offline  
Old 03-06-2010, 04:11 PM
Nontypical Buck
Thread Starter
charlie brown's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Crescent Valley, NV
Posts: 2,271

I should say that I was not lost. I knew exactly where I was, just was not able to get back to the truck because of the fall, and the distance. I was moving pretty slow. The only thing the GPS would have done is made me realize EXACTLY how far I was. Not sure how having a GPS will save spending a night in the woods?
charlie brown is offline  
Old 03-07-2010, 03:17 AM
Typical Buck
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 679

Originally Posted by charlie brown View Post
I should say that I was not lost. I knew exactly where I was, just was not able to get back to the truck because of the fall, and the distance. I was moving pretty slow. The only thing the GPS would have done is made me realize EXACTLY how far I was. Not sure how having a GPS will save spending a night in the woods?

if you don't know where you are [without a GPS] you will be spending the night in the woods ..if you have your GPS just walk back to your truck ..
heinz57 is offline  

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.