November: Survival Skills
Do you have what it takes to survive? No cell phone. No map. Just a few basic tools –could you make it? This was a question that recently crossed my mind on a road trip.
Somewhere in Montana, I ended up on a desolate back road (I use the word road lightly) that was climbing towards the sky. I was trying to get to an old mining ghost town if that helps paint the scene. The path was a ten mile drive, but the cliffs and dirt roads to the destination made it seem like 50. From the start I lost cell service – a sense of panic crossed my mind. What would I do if something went wrong? Who knows how long it would be until the next person came through. Thankfully, it was an uneventful drive, but that question stuck with me – Do I have what it takes to survive?
This question fueled November’s box. We wanted to provide you with two pieces to aid your survival; an assortment of necessary items that could make survival easier and a manual to sharpen your skills. We are always careful about how we curate items for New Hobby Box – but something felt different this time, a life might depend on it at some point.
We hope you never have to use this box in an emergency, but just in case, we are excited to teach you the skills to be prepared.
What’s in your kit? All the essentials… Once you practice and learn skills from the book, we recommend keeping your kit in a bug out bag or in your car.
Survival Manual – This is a 1970 Military Issue (Army) on all the finer points of survival. Use this book to guide yourself through all the box items this month, we have page numbers on each item to give you an idea of how to use it. If there was one thing to really help you survive, it would be this book. It covers all the basic elements (food, water, shelter, fire, etc.) and includes great illustrations to guide the process.
5-in-1 Survival Tool – You might think this is just an orange whistle with a compass, but it’s much more than that.
- Compass | Page 20 –If you are fortunate enough to have a map with you, a compass will become your best friend. Page 20 will show you how to orient the compass to your map, but even without a map, lay the compass flat on a level surface to guide you in cardinal directions.
- Whistle – We all know how to use a whistle, but this orange beauty can generate some noise. Use this in times of trying to get attention, or to deter animals.
- Dry case | Page 151 – The tube of the whistle unscrews from the compass. Inside is a dry, waterproof space that is ideal for holding matches. If you don’t have matches, use page 151 to guide you.
- Flint | Page 152 – On the side of the orange body of the whistle, you’ll notice a black line about an inch long. This is actually flint. And with the strike of steel (the blade of a knife) it can produce enough of a spark to light a fire, perfect for when you don’t have matches. Place the flint close to tinder as you strike it. P.S. we added aspen shavings to your box to help start your fire.
- Mirror | Page 44 – A mirror is an excellent way to signal others. Just unscrew the compass from the whistle body, and on the underside of it you will find the mirror. Follow the advice on page 44 for signaling, but utilize the visual on page 46 to truly see how proper mirror signaling works.
1000 ML Water Bottle | Page 47 – About 25% of this book is written around water – it’s that important. This BPA free water bottle will be your link to survival. An alternate path to water you may not have thought of for finding water might be in plants around you – check out page 53.
Bandages and Compress | Page 16 – Early on in the book, you learn the basics of first aid. Being injured makes survival that much harder. We’ve included bandages and a compress to help you out in the worst case scenario. Also, the compress is incredibly compressed, and you might be surprised at how strong it is.
Aluminum Carabiner w/Compass & LED Light – This tool can hold rope, guide you, and light the way – essential to survival.
- Carabiner – Great for tying something to yourself as you travel, but also a great way to lower and raise items when tied to a rope.
- Flashlight – Unscrew the light end, you’ll find the battery inside covered by a thin circular piece of clear plastic. Remove the plastic and place the battery back in. Screw the lid closed, and as you tighten it all the way, the light will turn on. These LED light is bright – you’ve been warned.
Paracord | Page 124 – The paracord can be used for anything. On page 124 it’s great for making a fishing line, you can use it to build game traps like in page 144, or even help out with tying a structure together like in page 212.
Survival Blanket – Stay warm! This blanket reflects 90% of heat. Use it to shield yourself from the sun, or provide a cover to your shelter as well. In the event you are trying to track down arial support, it can be used as a signal.
Poncho – Staying dry can save your life in a survival situation. It’s also a great way to cover your shelter to prevent any rain from falling through, as well as way to collect water for storage. Make sure you don’t open this one until you need it – it’s quite large.
Multi-tool – Knife, scissors, and file. This little tool is perfect for modifying other pieces to fit what you need.
Sewing Kit – The possibilities are endless with this one. It makes for great fishing line, stitching a wound, or combine to fibrous materials, etc. The needles can also be used to make your own compass…
Carabiner, Flashlight, Compass combo – The carabiner will come in handy for hanging items or building a shelter. To turn on the flashlight, unscrew the cap,
Did you enjoy learning survival skills? We want to see how you’re enjoying this month’s hobby. Share images of you using some of your new items with us on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook using @newhobbybox or #newhobbybox. We’d love to see a photo of you and your items in action, practicing a survival skill from the book. One person will get next month’s New Hobby Box for free.
Thanks for learning with us – it means the world.
Try anything once!