Wednesday, 17 April 2019

Camping Tick List

The Sun is out and many people will be heading outdoors for camping trips or other activities but its a good idea to do a little preparation first...

Almost anywhere in the countryside you're liable to be in close proximity to small but nasty little creatures called ticks


These little relatives of spiders are bloodsuckers that like to climb tall grass and other vegetation in order to cling onto any passing mammal that brushes past them for a free meal

And unfortunately they can transmit a bacterial disease called "Lyme" from the bacteria that lives in their stomachs

Symptoms are similar to flu;

  • Fever
  • Headaches
  • Pain in muscles and joints
  • Fatigue

Some people have claimed to suffer for many years after being infected if they didn't get early treatment...

Once they find a victim they like climb into a nice warm spot like the groin or armpit where they will not be disturbed as they eat

There are chemical products that can deter ticks and as they only climb up simple steps like tucking trousers into socks can also help prevent bites

A common symptom of a tick bite is the "bullseye" rash shown here of a red swelling surrounded by an outer ring shaped rash sometimes these can take weeks to develop long after the tick has gone so if you have something like this visit your doctor as soon as possible


Many first aid kits will include tweezers which can be used to removed the tick but this is very difficult as their jaws are jagged like a saw blade to give them a strong grip on their victim

Often the body can be crushed leaving the head embedded in the wound prone to infection or even when being gentle run the large risk of squeezing the little beastie causing it to vomit its stomach contents, including the aforementioned bacteria into the wound 

But you can buy very inexpensive little plastic tick removal tool similar to a prybar for pulling nails that fit around the ticks head allowing you to twist and lift it out which greatly reduce this risk




For anyone going outdoors I would recommend having one of these in your first aid kit particularly parents or pet owners like dog walkers, and as I said they like to climb into areas difficult to see a small mirror is also advisable

Not all tick bites will result in bacterial infection but in all cases its advisable to see a medical professional for assessment

Have fun outdoors whatever you're planning, but be prepared for you and your loved ones...

Take care
Roo



Tuesday, 19 March 2019

Prepper Glossary

Common terms from bushcraft and prepping;



A-frame

A structure formed by two angled sides that meet at the top, such as a shelter with two walls

azimuth

Navigational term for the angle of a bearing from a general direction, normally North

bail

Handle on a pot for hanging over a fire

baton

A stick used for beating a blade when splitting wood known as battoning

bearing

Direction of travel when navigating with a compass

bergen 

Alternative British name for a rucksack

bezel

Rotating dial divided into degrees to calculate a bearing on a compass

birds nest

Collection of dry material as tinder for firestarting that resembles a birds nest

bivvy or bivi

short term for bivouac to describe a shelter when camping can be a simple bag that can enclose a person to a small tent

bow drill

Firestarting method by generating friction in order to create heat to produce a smouldering ember

bug in

Stay put and ride out any emergency situation

bug out

Evacuate an area, prepacked equipment bags for this are called Bug Out Bags (B.O.B.) Bug Out Location (B.O.L.) Bug Out Vehicle (B.O.V) 

burner

Camping stove that produces a contained flame

bushcraft

The knowledge and skills to use natural surroundings for survival in the wilderness

cache

Hidden emergency stores 

charcloth

Cotton cloth that has been heated almost to the point of combustion to create a extremely dry tinder

crane

Structure for suspending things, such as pots over an open fire for cooking, made from notched sticks

Dakota fire pit

Two holes in the earth, one used as a fire pit connected by a tunnel to allow airflow to the base of the fire

deadfall

Dead wood that has fallen to the ground, deadstanding refers to dead wood that has remained standing or fallen against something so that it doesn't lie on the ground

debris shelter

Emergency cover created by layering sticks to form a low enclosed space covered with four to six inches of leaves and twigs for insulation and weatherproofing

fatwood

Wood with a high resin content which readily takes a spark and burns very strongly

feather stick

Sticks that have been shaved to create several close fitting fine curls to increase the surface area for firestarting

fell

Process to cut down a tree, where possible avoid cutting living trees

ferrocerium, ferro, firesteel

Metal alloy used to generate sparks for firestarting

fire lay

Pattern of layinf down wood to build a campfire

fly or flying tarp

Suspending a over the ground but not touching it, often used to create open sided shleters as cover for hammocks

grind

The cross section of a cutting tools cutting edge

haversack

Small bag usually carried by a sholuder strap

I.N.C.H. bag

I'm Not Coming Home bag, a prepacked bag where you do not intend to return home

jackknife

Knife with a moveable blade that folds into the handle when not in use, often called pocket knife or if it has several folding tools a multi tool

kindling

Dry material that easily ignites for campfires

kuksa

Traditional wooden cup

lean-to

Single walled angled structure grounded at its base and supported at the head

M.R.E.

Meal Ready to Eat

notch

Shape cut into wood to form structures, hangers or handles

paracord

Strong multiuse cordage, based on parachute cordage

pitch

Place to camp

prep

Abbreviation of preparation, a plan or prepared item for a given situation, to prep is prepping, a person who preps is a prepper  

resin

Sap from trees, multiple uses depending on the tree species

ridgeline

Elevated line for setting up shelters or the observable peaks of hills forming the horizon

Roycroft frame or pack

Load carrying triangular frame made from lashed together sticks

S.H.T.F.

Something 💩 Hits The Fan, an impending or recent bad situation

tarp

Abbreviated tarpaulin also used for any sheeting to form a ground sheet or shelter

T.E.O.T.W.A.W.K.I.

The End Of The World As We Know It, lifechanging apocalyptic occurance on global scale such as an extinction level asteroid strike  

tinder

Fine flammable material in firestarting

toggle

Stick loosely connected to something as an attachment or locking point  

whetstone

Hard stone used to grind the cutting egde of tools to sharpen them

widowmaker

Dead tree temporarily supported but liable to collapse without notice







This list is by no means exhaustive in order to keep it managable but will be periodically updated so if you have any additions you would like to see entered please comment below and explain your reasoning

Take care

Roo
  


Monday, 11 March 2019

Best way to start a campfire with doritos...

So as the weather gets better people will begin to spend more time outdoors camping and grilling on BBQ's and a popular "hack" I've seen online is to burn Doritos as firelighters, but in my opinion they're all doing it wrong...


Yes these little triangular snacks will burn very happily so could get a campfire going, but the packet they're sold in, like many other snack packets, is made from an unrecyclable plastic
So eat your snack, burn the pack!



You can see the video I posted on YouTube about this here;






These packets are a common sight as the wind blows them around our environment from landfill sites or inconsiderate people that simply discard them as litter 

I've always folded them to prevent them doing this, as many animals eat them and get sick and when folded they won't be blown about unless there's a hurricane.



Recently I've began to keep them as little firestarters rather than consigning them to many years in landfill 

In damp conditions where dry tinder is scarce, you'll often see a packet like this trapped in a bush or tall grass that could help you out

By burning it you're also cleaning up the environment win-win 
Take care

Roo

Friday, 22 February 2019

Buddy Burners the campfire in your pocket

A "Buddy Burner" is a simple fire in a tin can of some sort usually fueled by wax that has been added to corrugated cardboard



These simple emergency stoves can be used to cook on but could also provide a limited heat source, here it is heating some chicken noodles in my Latinaric Stainless Canteen Set

Please note this is an affiliate link and as an Amazon Associate I may earn from qualifying purchases on this link but you will not be charged any extra, I have not been paid to review this product

All you require is an empty tin, in this case I'm using an altoids tin, this is smaller than many I've seen other people make but it fits nicely in your trouser pocket and as it has a lid makes snuffing out the flame safe and easy whilst keeping things clean and tidy when not in use 👍


I mark the cardboard and cut into strips that are the height of my tin, in the case 2cms wide, then I melt some candle wax and pour over the top

The safest way to do this is to place the wax into a container that is gradually warmed up in a pot full of water, so long as you don't boil the water the wax won't be heated to the point that it can begin burning

You can watch how I made mine here;



The amount of heat your burner will give off and how long it lasts will depend on the size of tin you use but this little pocket campfire easily boils water and heats food


I just pushed four wire tent pegs into the ground to act as a pot stand and you're good to go but of course you can find other means of supporting your pot depending on what your using

Take care

Roo

Wednesday, 30 January 2019

Camping Power

Its great to be able to get away from technology when we want to but having the ability to power your phone or other devices could be a lifesaver



I've had a couple of these power banks from Aukey for two years now and they've been great at keeping my devices charged when camping but usually are left in the car glove box for emergencies

Aukey 20000 mAh power bank


Please note this is an affiliate link and as an Amazon Associate I may earn from qualifying purchases on this link but you will not be charged any extra, I have not been paid to review this product

Specifications:

capacity of 20,000 mAh

5V 3.4A dual USB output 

lightweight (388g / 13.7oz)

They were £19.99 when I bought them and are similarly priced on amazon today and there are many sizes and brands of power bank to suit your needs or budget but they are a great addition to any B.O.B. or vehicle

Take care
Roo

Camping Tick List

The Sun is out and many people will be heading outdoors for camping trips or other activities but its a good idea to do a little preparation...