APOCABOX Holiday Survival Challenge Series: Challenge #3 – Christmas Tree Snow/Bog Shoes

Challenge Series Overview

As APOCABOX subscribers already know, a big part of each box is completing my Survival Skills Challenge issued in each box.  Unlike the APOCABOX Survival Skills Challenge, this survival skills challenge series is open for everyone to participate.  I’ve teamed up with two survival buddies of mine (Hank Gevedon of Reptile Toolworks and Dave Mead of Mead Longbows) to issue a series of THREE Survival Skills Challenges to take place in between Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.  The purpose of this challenge series is to not only hone your survival skills but to also utilize holiday products/materials that might traditionally be thrown away.  As I always say, your most important survival skill is the ability to IMPROVISE.  These challenges will call upon those skills and hopefully strengthen them.

And, YES, there are awesome prizes.  Prize details and descriptions below.

Challenge #3: Christmas Tree Snow/Bog Shoes

bog-shoe

Traveling in deep snow of wet bog conditions can be extremely difficult in normal footwear.  This challenge is to create a set of Snow/Bog shoes using the limbs from your Live Cut Christmas Tree.

Challenge Instructions, Tips & Tricks

STEP 1:

Gather 10 saplings (Christmas tree limbs can work for this) that are ideally about as long as you are.  If limbs of this length aren’t available, use the longest ones.  Remove/trim any small branches flush with the limb or sapling.

STEP 2:

Each shoe will be 5 sticks wide.  Line up 5 of your cleaned saplings/limbs so that all the small ends are together.  Tie them together about 2 inches from that end.

snow-shoe

STEP 3:

Now cut 1 solid stick that is approximately 1 inch in diameter x 10 inches long.  This is the 1st of 2 “BRACE STICKS”.  Balance the shoe as best you can on your index finder to find a properly balanced midpoint.  This spot is where the heel of your foot will go.  Lash the cut brace stick across and on top of the shoe at this point.  Lash so that that the 5 saplings/limbs are spaced evenly underneath the 1×10 brace stick.  “U” notches on the underside of the brace stick will help keep the saplings in place.

STEP 4:

Tie thick ends of the show saplings/limbs together leaving a width of at least 1” between them.  A series of overhand knots are sufficient for spacers.  See diagram above.

STEP 5:

Repeat Step 3 to create a second brace for the ball of your feet.  Find this point by placing your heel on the brace stick lashed across in Step 3.

STEP 6:

Repeat Steps 2-5 for other shoe.

bog-shoe-actual

TYING ON YOUR FOOT

While standing on your shoe, tie/lash around the bottom of your shoe (around the brace under the ball of your feet) and up around your toes, knotting it there.  Tie the middle of another section of cordage to that knot and bring the end around your heel and tie them together snuggly there.

**NOTE** Snow shoes will be easier to use if the tip curls up slightly.  A cord tied to the tip of the shoe and pulled tightly to the 1st brace and secured can curl them sufficiently. See photo for details.

Learn a new survival skill every other month with the 

APOCABOX SKILLS CHALLENGE! 

HOW TO ENTER THE CHALLENGE

Myself, Hank and Dave will be the judges of the completed SNOW/BOG SHOE photos submitted for the challenge.  As you can see by the prize details below, there will be three prizes awarded per challenge: an overall winner, a runner up and an honorable mention.  To enter, you must submit a photo of your improvised SNOW/BOG SHOES using one of the following:

1:  SUBMIT on INSTRAGRAM using the hash-tags: #apocabox AND #holidaysurvivalchallenge

2: Post photo on the APOCABOX FACEBOOK page at: http://www.facebook.com/apocabox

3: Email photo to me at creek@creekstewart.com if you don’t use social media

CHALLENGE DURATION:  Challenge starts 12/28/15 and Submission deadline for this challenge is 1/01/16.  Prizes will be announced on 1/02/16.

PRIZE DESCRIPTIONS (All prizes must be mailed to someone 18 years of age or older):

OVERALL GRAND PRIZE

5 HUNTING ARROWHEADS – COLLECTOR’S SET

arrowhead-set

1 of these arrowheads is knapped by a master flint knapper.  The other 4 are cast to match its every detail in 4140 tool steel

ABOUT THESE FLINT 2 STEEL ARROWHEADS

Hank Gevedon had an interest in arrowheads long before he met a most talented flint knapper at a bow hunting show.  The arrow and spear points that he was knapping were being produced using the same technology that had been used for 10-12 thousand years.  The arrow points that he was producing had been in use for over one thousand years on this continent.  The technical side of Hank realized that while the stone-age craftsman had reached the limits of his material, he had not.  Hank saw a vision of producing an exact replica of the stone point in a super tough tool steel.  He then developed a system that allowed him to harden and diamond sharpen these steel replica points.  After overcoming several manufacturing hurdles and extensive testing he has now produced an amazing projectile point.  Hank is now producing an entire line of Flint 2 Steel arrowheads following these techniques that will be available in the near future.  These diamond sharpened points provide amazing serrated penetration on carcasses as well as car doors and steel drums.

For more details on this HUNTING ARROWHEAD Collector’s Set,  visit http://www.facebook.com/meadlongbows or for additional photos email meadlongbows@gmail.com

RUNNER-UP PRIZE

1 Month Subscription to Creek’s Subscription Survival Box – APOCABOX

urban-box

HONORABLE MENTION PRIZE

IshWash Emergency Eyewash Kit + 1 puck of Instant Bowstring

runner-up

CONCLUSION

Good luck!  The deadline for entry in ALL 3 Survival Challenges is January 1st 2016 at MIDNIGHT!

If you’re like me and like SURVIVAL HACKS, consider picking up a copy of my next book: SURVIVAL HACKS on AMAZON at:

http://www.amazon.com/Survival-Hacks-Everyday-Items-Wilderness/dp/1440593345/

survival-hacks-creek-stewart

creek-stewart-survivalist

APOCABOX Holiday Survival Challenge Series: Challenge #2 – Holiday Popcorn Tin Grill/Smoker/Oven

Challenge Series Overview

As APOCABOX subscribers already know, a big part of each box is completing my Survival Skills Challenge issued in each box.  Unlike the APOCABOX Survival Skills Challenge, this survival skills challenge series is open for everyone to participate.  I’ve teamed up with two survival buddies of mine (Hank Gevedon of Reptile Toolworks and Dave Mead of Mead Longbows) to issue a series of THREE Survival Skills Challenges to take place in between Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.  The purpose of this challenge series is to not only hone your survival skills but to also utilize holiday products/materials that might traditionally be thrown away.  As I always say, your most important survival skill is the ability to IMPROVISE.  These challenges will call upon those skills and hopefully strengthen them.

And, YES, there are awesome prizes.  Prize details and descriptions below.

Challenge #1: Holiday Popcorn Tin Grill or Oven

popcorn-tin

Using an empty holiday popcorn tin to make a survival style grill or oven may sounds crazy…but you’ll be surprised at how easy it is and how efficient the result can be!

Challenge Instructions, Tips & Tricks

** IMPORTANT NOTE **

Be sure to burn off the “stink” of any improvised survival grill before actually cooking food on it.  The gases and chemicals that come from the paint and lining of some holiday tins can cause illness.  Once burned off you’re good to go!

GRILL DETAILS

popcorn-grill

popcorn-tin-grill-top

Poke ventilation holes (1/2″ to 1″) about an inch up from the bottom every 3-4 around the perimeter of the holiday tin.  A nail, awl, screwdriver, hammer & needle nose plyers will all make nice holes.

Use wire hangers for grill grates.  Poke holes to feed wires through about 2 inches down from the top of the can.  Bend ends to keep in place.

popcorn-grill

Make a fire on the bottom or place hot cools in the bottom and grill!

popcorn-grill-actual

OVEN DETAILS

tin-oven

This method requires no fire in the tin.  Instead, you will use the tin with or without the lid as an oven by placing it beside a fire.  Very simple concept but difficult to control food burn.  You can also place your meat on a stake and place the tin on top of it and build a fire around the tin.  This has been done with a small game bird in the photo above.

** Remember, 1st fire should be used to burn the “stink” off! **

Learn a new survival skill every other month with the 

APOCABOX SKILLS CHALLENGE! 

HOW TO ENTER THE CHALLENGE

Myself, Hank and Dave will be the judges of the completed GRILL/OVEN photos submitted for the challenge.  As you can see by the prize details below, there will be three prizes awarded per challenge: an overall winner, a runner up and an honorable mention.  To enter, you must submit a photo of your improvised Christmas Tree Survival Bow using one of the following:

1:  SUBMIT on INSTRAGRAM using the hash-tags: #apocabox AND #holidaysurvivalchallenge

2: Post photo on the APOCABOX FACEBOOK page at: http://www.facebook.com/apocabox

3: Email photo to me at creek@creekstewart.com if you don’t use social media

CHALLENGE DURATION:  Challenge starts 12/28/15 and Submission deadline for this challenge is 1/01/16.  Prizes will be announced on 1/02/16.

PRIZE DESCRIPTIONS (All prizes must be mailed to someone 18 years of age or older):

OVERALL GRAND PRIZE

DIY TURKISH ARROW KIT

arrow-kit

Build your ow3 Beautiful Turkish style arrows!

This kit includes traditional Turkish knocks, cast tool steel trilobite hunting points (see detail on these below), exquisite bamboo shafts and slick and silent turkey feather fletchings.

The trilobite arrow tips used in this kit with the three bladed shape, internal socket and cutting capability are considered the apex of ancient arrowhead technology.  The nomadic Scythian group fully developed the use of lost wax technology to produce these arrowheads in easy to cast bronze.

Hank Gevedon had the vision of a three bladed Trilobite arrowhead that would have evolved if the nomadic tribes had the technology available to cast the heads in a super tough tool steel alloy.

With this vision, Hank hand carved a wooden model and made a three piece mold exactly as the ancient metalsmiths would have done.  Then, he had a modern silicone rubber mold produced from a hand poured bronze original that he made from the hand carved wooden pattern.  Finally, the waxes produced from the silicone molds are used to produce an extremely high quality tool steel casting from the wax model.

This arrowhead pattern is the forerunner of almost every three bladed arrowhead that we currently use.  Hank and Dave are proud to bring this ancient technology back to life.

For more details on this DIY Turkish Arrow Kit visit http://www.facebook.com/meadlongbows or for additional photos email meadlongbows@gmail.com

RUNNER-UP PRIZE

1 Month Subscription to Creek’s Subscription Survival Box – APOCABOX

urban-box

HONORABLE MENTION PRIZE

IshWash Emergency Eyewash Kit + 1 puck of Instant Bowstring

runner-up

CONCLUSION

Good luck!  1 more Holiday Survival Challenges to be announced in the coming days!

If you’re like me and like SURVIVAL HACKS, consider picking up a copy of my next book: SURVIVAL HACKS on AMAZON at:

http://www.amazon.com/Survival-Hacks-Everyday-Items-Wilderness/dp/1440593345/

survival-hacks-creek-stewart

creek-stewart-survivalist

APOCABOX Holiday Survival Challenge Series: Challenge #1 – Christmas Tree Survival Bow

Challenge Series Overview

As APOCABOX subscribers already know, a big part of each box is completing my Survival Skills Challenge issued in each box.  Unlike the APOCABOX Survival Skills Challenge, this survival skills challenge series is open for everyone to participate.  I’ve teamed up with two survival buddies of mine (Hank Gevedon of Reptile Toolworks and Dave Mead of Mead Longbows) to issue a series of THREE Survival Skills Challenges to take place in between Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.  The purpose of this challenge series is to not only hone your survival skills but to also utilize holiday products/materials that might traditionally be thrown away.  As I always say, your most important survival skill is the ability to IMPROVISE.  These challenges will call upon those skills and hopefully strengthen them.

And, YES, there are awesome prizes.  Prize details and descriptions below.

Challenge #1: Christmas Tree Survival Bow

christmas-tree-illustration

If you have a live cut Christmas tree in your home this season, this challenge just may be for you!  Rather than throw the tree away or burn it, how about making a fully functional survival BOW from it.  Yes, a very effective survival bow can be made from the trunk of your live cut Christmas tree!

Challenge Instructions, Tips & Tricks

STEP 1:  Drag the tree outside and chop off all the limbs flush with the trunk.  It will look something similar to the illustration below.

bow-stave

STEP 2: Collect anything you can use for lashings and bowstrings later – ribbons, bows, wrapping twine, etc.

SIZE CONSIDERATIONS

bow-string

If the tree trunk is over 2” in diameter for the majority of its length your best bet is to split it in half down its length.  Once split, work with the best half.  You will still have a stave that has one small end and one fat end.  If small end is approximately ½ – ¾ inch thick and larger end is approximately 1 – 1 ½ inches thick then string it up and give it a go.  If you are dealing with a much larger tree you can split it a second time or just do some serious tapering on the ends.  The goal is to get the ends to match.

trimming-bow

Another option is to split the trunk, flip the pieces and lash the two fat ends together with a 5-6 inch overlap.

bow-no-string

If somehow you have a tree that is only 1 inch in diameter you can string it up & try as is – OR – cut it in half, split one half longways and lash the fat ends together with a 5-6 inch overlap.

christmas-tree-bow-handle

bow-illustration

*It’s very common for a bow to end up asymmetrical with a longer top limb.  To compensate, simply grip the bow below center.

Learn a new survival skill every other month with the 

APOCABOX SKILLS CHALLENGE! 

HOW TO ENTER THE CHALLENGE

Myself, Hank and Dave will be the judges of the completed bow photos submitted for the challenge.  As you can see by the prize details below, there will be three prizes awarded per challenge: an overall winner, a runner up and an honorable mention.  To enter, you must submit a photo of your improvised Christmas Tree Survival Bow using one of the following:

1:  SUBMIT on INSTRAGRAM using the hash-tags: #apocabox AND #holidaysurvivalchallenge

2: Post photo on the APOCABOX FACEBOOK page at: http://www.facebook.com/apocabox

3: Email photo to me at creek@creekstewart.com if you don’t use social media

CHALLENGE DURATION:  Challenge starts 12/25/15 and Submission deadline for this challenge is 1/01/16.  Prizes will be announced on 1/02/16.

PRIZE DESCRIPTIONS (All prizes must be mailed to someone 18 years of age or older):

OVERALL GRAND PRIZE

DIY HORSE BOW KIT

horse-bow-kit

Everything you need to make a HORSE BOW is in this kit.  It is an ancient design and all natural materials.  Hunt with it the same day.  To see the HORSE BOW in action visit http://www.facebook.com/meadlongbows or for additional photos email meadlongbows@gmail.com

RUNNER-UP PRIZE

1 Month Subscription to Creek’s Subscription Survival Box – APOCABOX

urban-box

HONORABLE MENTION PRIZE

IshWash Emergency Eyewash Kit + 1 puck of Instant Bowstring

runner-up

CONCLUSION

Good luck!  2 more Holiday Survival Challenges to be announced in the coming days!

If you’re like me and like SURVIVAL HACKS, consider picking up a copy of my next book: SURVIVAL HACKS on AMAZON at:

http://www.amazon.com/Survival-Hacks-Everyday-Items-Wilderness/dp/1440593345/

survival-hacks-creek-stewart

creek-stewart-survivalist

 

I double dog dare you to join me! #daretodo

IMG_20140830_185556

“The only things we keep permanently are those we give away.” – Waite Phillips

I do wonder what Mr. Phillips meant exactly by this statement.  I think it was something like this:  Our impact on people is ultimately our only legacy.

Rarely do we have the opportunity to be involved in a cause or initiative that has the capacity to change the face of the world we live in.  Today is one of those very rare opportunities.

I DARE YOU!

I dare you to take the 100 day #DARETODO challenge.

It’s simple. Each day for 100 days do an act of service, no matter how small, for the other people around you. Post about it on social media using the hashtag #DareToDo — and we’ll make America better, each day, together.

Here’s the official site: http://dareto.do/

daretodo

 

CR///EK, why are you taking the challenge?

I’m taking the challenge starting TODAY, August 7th 2015.  Each day for 100 days I am going to do at least one selfless act for someone else and share it with you on social media.

WHY?  Because the only things you really keep are the things you give away.  I like to be a part of BIG things.  I like to be a part of GOOD things.  And, I like to be a part of things that CHALLENGE me to be a better person.

JOIN ME?

So, want to be a part of something that will make the world a better place?  Join me on social media everyday with something positive and take the 100 DAY #DARETODO Challenge – TODAY!

FACEBOOK: http://www.facebook.com/creekstewart

TWITTER:  @survivalcreek

INSTAGRAM: @creekstewart

 

Remember, it’s not IF but WHEN,

creek-stewart-survivalist

You’re not going to believe what I do with this 2-liter bottle.

Just in case you missed the most recent episode of FAT GUYS IN THE WOODS, I had to write this blog post and show you a cool survival skill that I think you’ll really enjoy.  And, it’s a great way to source some awesome cordage in a pinch.  I call it the 2-Liter Bottle Cordage Jig.

2-liter-jig

Years ago I saw a video about how a small factory was recycling 2-liter bottles to make woven baskets.  They had a fancy electric powered piece of equipment that would allow an operator to feed in trash 2-liter bottles and it would strip them into long pieces of plastic that would then be coiled on a spool and used to weave baskets.

2-liter-trash

Trash 2-liter bottles (or similar) can be found all over the world, especially in coastal areas.  During our week filming FAT GUYS IN THE WOODS in the Florida Swamps I decided to create a primitive version of making cordage from 2-liter bottles using just my knife, my folding saw and a sapling stump.

2-liter-jig-knife

 

Below is a link to the YouTube video filmed for the show that I think you will find very educational.  It’s rare to find a survival skill that you’ve never seen before and I’m proud to bring one to you in this post!

!!!VIDEO LINK HERE!!!

Like I always say, survival is about using what you have to get what you need and this skill is a prime example of that philosophy.

Remember, it’s not IF but WHEN,

creek-stewart-survivalist

Improvised Tarp Boat

Summer is the time to practice summer survival skills.  Here’s a great one I think you’ll enjoy.  This one comes right from the pages of my latest book, Build the Perfect Bug Out Survival Skills.  This is a step-by-step photo series about how to build an improvised boat from a tarp!

Step 1: Lay your tarp flat on the ground.  This is a 9’x12′ tarp.

2-30

Step 2:  Pile pine boughs or leafy branches in a circle about 12″ tall.  This will be the diameter of your boat.  Leave at least 1′-2′ of tarp around the perimeter.

2-31

Step 3: Lay a gridwork of sturdy sticks (1″-2″ in diameter) on top of the circle.

2-32

Step 4: Pile another 12″ of green boughs on top, again in a circular pattern.

2-33

Step 5: Wrap the tarp around the circle and tie it to the gridwork of sticks.

2-34

Step 6:  Cross your fingers.

2-35

 

Remember, it’s not IF but WHEN,

creek-stewart-survivalist

Follow me on INSTAGRAM @creekstewart.

Follow me on TWITTER @survivalcreek.

 

FAT GUYS IN THE WOODS: BLOG SKILL SERIES: Become a Fire Walker – Apache Match

You’ve probably noticed that I’ll often send the guys off on the morning of their solo day with some kind of fire carry method.  The ability to carry fire is an important survival skill for a variety of reasons.

First, if you can carry fire, you don’t have to recreate your fire start all over again.  It typically takes less energy and calories to carry fire than to start all over from scratch.  Survival is all about conserving calories.

Second, it’s not hard to imagine that you’ve used the last of your fire starting materials.  Maybe you only had 1 match?  Maybe you’re all out of char cloth?  The ability to travel with fire once you’ve created it could truly be a life-saving skill if you have no other means of making fire.

Thirdly, rarely is a survival signal fire built right at a base camp location.  Oftentimes, survival camps are built under the cover of tree canopies and near building materials.  Signal fires are built in opposite type places – out in the open where they can be seen by rescue planes, ships, vehicles or crews.  The ability to carry fire from survival base camp to a signal fire location could be the difference between being rescued or passed over.  When every second counts, you may not have TIME to start a fire from scratch at a signal fire location.

BECOME A FIRE WALKER:  The Apache Match

One of the easiest and most popular fire carry methods I know of is often called an Apache Match.  Primitive peoples both in this country and others have used similar methods to carry fire from camp to camp and even on long hunting/scouting trips.  This method of carry can last anywhere from several hours to several days.  I’ve heard rumors of Apache matches lasting for weeks but I would imagine that this is in fact a series of Apache Matches rather than just one.

The basic principle is to contain a burning coal inside of a tinder bundle.  By limiting the supply of oxygen and keeping the coal in a near-smothered state, it allows the coal and surrounding tinder to smolder for several hours.  I’ve had many Apache Matches last for 3-4 hours with little effort and maintenance.

Below are the steps to creating an Apache Match that is approximately 12 inches in length by 4 inches in diameter.  One this size can be expected to last anywhere from 2-3 hours depending on a variety of conditions – mostly how much oxygen the coal gets.

STEP 1:  The Coal and The Bundle

apache-match-step-1

I typically use a bright red coal from the fire bed.  This is represented by a red 5-hour energy bottle cap in the following photos :)  The coal can be anywhere from 1″ to 2″ in diameter.  It can also be a collection of small coals.  This coal is embedded in between 2 big handfuls of tinder material.  ‘Tinder Material’ is the same as a tinder bundle.  In this case I’m using shredded cedar bark.  Grasses, cattail down, dried seed heads, dry inner bark and plant fibers would also suffice.  Even shredded newspaper would work in an urban scenario.

STEP 2: A Bun in the Oven

apache-match-step-2

This photo shows the coal getting ready to be covered by 2 big handfuls of tinder material.

STEP 3: A Coal Sandwich

apache-match-step-3

You can’t see it in this photo but the red ‘coal’ in officially embedded inside of the tinder material.

Step 4: The Outer Layer

apache-match-step-4

Next, you need to add an exterior layer to the bundle.  This not only helps keep everything together but it also helps protect your hands.  These things can get a little hot when traveling.  The outer layer shown here is also cedar bark.  I left it in big strips versus ‘fuzzing’ it down to tinder material like on the inside.  You use any kind of bark really.  It can be dry or green, it doesn’t really matter.  I’ve even used cardboard before.  Don’t get too particular.

Step 5: Wrap the Bundle

apache-match-step-5

Lastly, you want to loosely wrap the bundle in order to keep everything together.  This one is wrapped with willow bark but you can use anything – paracord, a hoodie drawstring, a shoestring, dental floss, plant fibers, yucca leaves, etc.  Don’t make the mistake of wrapping it too tight.  There is a delicate balance between too loose and too tight and only experience can tell the difference.  Too tight and you’ll smother the coal.  Too loose and the coal will spread through your tinder too fast.

Step 6: From Match to Flame

apache-match-step-6

An Apache Match will require some maintenance and attention while traveling.  You may have to blow on it a little bit to make sure you’ve still got some heat.  You may have to tighten your lashings or even loosen them.  It’s important to check on it every few minutes.

Once you’ve reached your destination, making fire is as simple as unwrapping your Apache Match and blowing the tinder bundle into flame.  If you’ve done everything right, flame should be just a few breaths away.

CONCLUSION

I really believe the ability to carry fire is a necessary survival skill.  Would you like to see more posts dedicated to survival fire carry methods?  I’ve definitely got some tricks up my sleeve for carrying fire in Season 2!

creek-stewart-bug-out-book

 

Remember, it’s not IF but WHEN,

creek-stewart-survivalist

FAT GUYS IN THE WOODS: BLOG SKILL SERIES: Make an Improvised Bow Saw

In the first episode of Fat Guys in the Woods, we made an improvised Bow Saw using a bent sapling.  We then used this saw to help build shelters and process wood throughout the week.  This post provides a little more detail about this project.

First, about Bow Saws…

I love a good Bow Saw.  I actually prefer a Bow Saw over an ax.  A good Bow Saw can process an insane amount of wood in a short amount of time.  It’s safer to use than an ax, require less practice and takes far less energy.  It’s also much lighter.  My Bow Saw of choice is the Bahco 36″ model.  Here’s a photo below:

bahco-bow-saw

I’ll be the first to admit that they are bulky, especially the larger ones.  Luckily, the ‘BOW’ part of the Bow Saw can be improvised in the field using a flexible sapling if you just want to carry in the blade portion.  Below is how to do it.

Choosing the BOW.

I typically use either small saplings or branches that are about 3/4″ – 1″ in diameter.  I cut them about 6″ longer than my Bow Saw blade.  That’s typically pinky tip to thumb tip of my open hand with fingers spread.  They must be flexible.  They must also be GREEN wood.  No dead stuff.  I’ll often flex them around a large tree to break them in.  This really helps.

Next, split the end of each sapling in half about 3″ down.  The splits on each end must be aligned with each other.  They can’t be going in opposite directions.  This is necessary in order for the saw blade to be straight.

Key Rings/Wooden Peg Blade Attachment Options

Threading key rings onto each end of the Bow Saw blade in advance of your trip makes attaching an improvised sapling handle pretty easy.  All bow saw blades that I know of have holes in each end.  These holes are perfect attachment points for key rings.  Key rings can be purchased in the key making dept. of virtually any hardware store.

Start by inserting the end of the bow saw blade into one of the splits on the end of your sapling.  Fold the key ring over and around the sapling like shown below.  If your sapling is larger in diameter than the key ring then simple taper down the end with your knife so that it will fit.

key-ring-up-close

If you don’t have key rings, an appropriately sized wooden peg will also work.

peg-in-saw

Next, carefully bend the sapling and attach the blade in the same way to the other end.  Flexing the sapling around a tree really helps to ready the sapling for this step in the build.

bow-saw-profile

I’ll often tie some paracord around the blade and key ring for peace of mind but it isn’t necessary.  The entire build typically only takes 5-10 minutes and is a really fun bushcraft project.

bow-saw-in-log

CONCLUSION

Although not as robust as the metal store-bought versions, these improvised bow saws may surprise you.  I’ve been using one around Willow Haven for a couple years and it still works like a charm.  Besides, there’s nothing quite like the feeling of improvising and making tools in the field.

creek-stewart-bug-out-book

 

Remember, it’s not IF but WHEN,

creek-stewart-survivalist

Hello from Creek

Hello all.  As you read this post, I’m deep in the North Woods filming the first Episodes of Fat Guys in the Woods for Season 2, coming this Spring.  I scheduled this post to publish before I left.  I’ll be unplugged where I’m going.

For those of you who know very much about me and Willow Haven Outdoor, you also know that I try to keep my parents involved (and busy) with my many survival activities and pursuits.  This includes when I’m gone filming 😉  Just so they don’t get too bored with me out of town, I thought I’d encourage you to visit our on-line store (http://www.notifbutwhensurvivalstore.com) with a timely CHRISTMAS DISCOUNT CODE (found at the end of this email).  My Mom and Dad run this business from my childhood home and I don’t want them getting lazy on me while I’m incommunicado leading guys through a survival adventure for weeks  on end.

In our on-line store we carry a huge variety of survival tools and resources at all different price points.  There are tons of great stocking stuffers in our UNDER $10 SECTION here: http://www.notifbutwhensurvivalstore.com/category-s/1881.htm

1

Here is a link to many of the items we used on Season 1 of Fat Guys in the Woodshttp://www.notifbutwhensurvivalstore.com/category-s/1887.htm

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We also carry tons of Books and Information Resources here:  http://www.notifbutwhensurvivalstore.com/category-s/1833.htm

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One of my favorite sections is our selection of survival gloves and clothing accessories here: http://www.notifbutwhensurvivalstore.com/category-s/1848.htm

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Before you go, be sure to write down the COUPON CODE below.  This will save you 7% during check-out!  And, there is FREE SHIPPING for orders over $100.  Be sure to tell Mom and Dad I said HELLO from the field.

NOT IF BUT WHEN COUPON CODE:  CREEK7

Remember, it’s not IF but WHEN,

creek-stewart-survivalist

FAT GUYS IN THE WOODS: BLOG SKILL SERIES: Jam Knot

Remember these cool shelters that Joe, Opie, Zach and I built in the river valley?

shelter-circle

One very important part of building this shelter is the bed frame similar to what I’ve shown below. 3-4″ diameter logs are stacked log cabin style to build a frame that can contain bedding materials (leaves/boughs/branches/grass,etc) and help brace the arch-style roof.  The logs are lashed together using the JAM KNOT.  I love this knot and it’s one of the most useful outdoor knots I know and I’d like to use this opportunity to teach it to you.

bed-frame

I’ve never been a big fan of teaching knots with the written word or photos so I’ve filmed a short video where I describe how to tie it step-by-step.  Below is the embedded video and here is the link:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sQxPvWTT3PM

It’s such a simple knot to use and works perfect for bed frames to contain loose natural insulation.

creek-stewart-bug-out-book

Remember, it’s not IF but WHEN,

creek-stewart-survivalist