|1. Pack - A good pack is not only important for carrying your gear but for protecting your outfit from the limbs, rocks,
brush, or anything else you put it through.
2. Shelter - A 9' x 12' tarp is the perfect size for the solo wanderer and is very adaptable to many uses. It is
important that you know a few different ways to rig a tarp to match the weather or terrain. A ground tarp and bug net
for the front in summer makes life a little more comfortable.
3. Axe - It’s the most important tool in the woods along with your fire starter. In the warmer months a smaller axe will
work just fine for all your camp chores. When the temperatures drop and the snow starts to fall it’s time for the full
size axe and bucksaw.
4. Fire Starter - Fire is the heart of the camp, from cooking, to warmth, to light, it is essential to life in the woods.
Always carry a couple of ways to start a fire with you; one on your person and one in the pack for back up. After the
tarp is set up the fire will be made one step away from the front.
5. Bedding - When temperatures are above freezing a wool blanket is my choice for bedding. It is soft, warm, and
naturally wicks moisture. Sleeping, sitting by the fire, or just lounging under a tree, there nothing more practical then
a wool blanket in the woods. When temperature start to drop, then a good warm sleeping bag is added. If you bring a
foam pad, it only needs to be long enough to keep your shoulders and hips off the ground.
6. Knife - A sturdy, functional, lightweight knife that fits well in your hand and holds an edge is of the utmost
importance. A blade made with high carbon steel with a full tang is ideal.
7. Cooking Pot – If I only had room for one cooking item it would be a pot. Boiling water will be what you will need
most and everything else can be roasted. A frying pan is a nice addition for frying fish or baking bread. A cup, leather
gloves, fork & spoon can all be stored inside the pot.
8. Compass - The best compass is the one that you actually use. I find it interesting how a man will circle when in new
terrain and can’t get a visual on a fixed landmark. Staying on a true bearing and keeping track of your time and
distance will greatly reduce your chances of ever getting lost. A current map of the area you are traveling in is always
9. Rope – 50 feet of ¼ inch rope is perfect for lashing poles, rigging your tarp, lining your canoe, Etc. A good rope is
invaluable on the trail or in camp.
10. First Aid Kit (for body and gear) – Keeping yourself healthy and avoiding infection is important, along with
keeping your gear in tip top shape. Tape, gauze, iodine, butterfly stitches, & twisters are some of the basic medical
supplies. For your gear, a sharpening stone, sewing kit, 550 cord, and a multi tool will cover most of your needs. A
useful multi tool for the woods should have pliers, file, saw, knife, and an awl.
|The Woodsman's 10 Essentials
|It's finally the weekend!! You have been looking over the maps and plan to explore some new country.
You found the perfect spot. Your plan is to pole up as far as you can, then leave the canoe and hike in
the rest of the way to see what you can find. You only want to take what you need and nothing else.
There are 10 basic essentials that you need to carry for your trip and they are as follows.
|Throw in your extra clothing, such as an extra pair of wool socks, heavy wool shirt, wool hat, long
underwear, and a rain coat. Also basic food staples like oatmeal, pasta, rice, coffee, bannock mix or
whatever you find easy to prepare over an open fire. One pot meals are always the easiest and best way
to cook when you are out by yourself. A 22 rifle and/or a small fishing kit will keep you in a fresh supply
of meat when seasons are open. With this basic outfit the lone woodsman can travel with ease and in
|Gear and food for a three day trip.