Guerilla Survival

Guerilla Survival

Wednesday 21 October 2020

Survival Equipment.

This covers the very basic equipment that should be carried with you when training or when camping. What is shown here I carry in a rucksack.


  • Karesvando Survival Knife which comes with a steel-striker and a sharpener, all of which fit around the knife-sheath. 
  • This knife cost me around £80.00 and I have used it for many years now without any problem. 
  • Buy the best knife you can afford since this can be a life-saver.


This is a Silky Folding Saw made in Japan, and a good make this is; again this has been used over and over again with no problem. This is the mini-saw but they supply larger variations. I have also used Bahco Folding Saws (Swedish) and these too are excellent, and give years of service. Remember with these saws that it cuts on the pull-back and not when pushed forward. My Bahco has cut logs up to 3 - 4 inches in the past. 


This is a Gransfors-Bruks axe made in Sweden, and has given excellent use over the years: I have a Forest Axe made by the same people. Again, these were not cheap but they have lasted years and always take a good edge, which is the main thing needed in Woodland Craft. 


This is one of the Snugpack Response Packs that I have used in the past; as you can see it bulges out with the contents - Axe, Saw, Knife, GPS, Fire-Starting Kit, Basha and Cordage etc. Rather than the basha this could carry an mKettle and Cup on the outside. I attach carabiners to the outside for use in shelter-building or hanging up utensils or kit. 


This is the mKettle when I first got it many years ago, and it is still going to this day. The advantage over the Kelly Kettle (in this case) is that it is smaller, and it has a cover that allows it to be picked up (as shown above - NOT my painted finger-nails by the way, they were my daughters). Another advantage is that this one can be filled to travel, the bung is water-tight. 

The mKettle will make two cups of tea or coffee, or one larger mug; tinder can be carried inside the chimney of the kettle, and in the base-piece. It fits into a cover which can hold a spoon and more tinder etc. One thing I adapted this too was by using a methylated spirits burner as above; this means carrying a small bottle of meths but this takes up little room. This means a quicker cuppa than using wood-fuel. The advantage of the mKettle or Kelly Kettle over the Camping-Gas stoves is that the latter are rather hard to use when the weather is really cold because the gas-canister freezes as it is used and the gas slows down rapidly. These are alright for summer use, and, of course, quicker to boil water. 

What I did at a later stage was to carry a small poncho, small ground-sheet, lightweight aluminium pegs, and guy-ropes (cordage) in a small waterproof bag. This is used to build a very quick and easy lean-to shelter if the weather suddenly turns bad. This fits easily into the rucksack, or in the Snugpack for quick use. 


  • Some cotton wool as tinder.
  • A couple of small fire-lighters for emergency.
  • Windproof Matches and a Lighter.
  • Some wood-shavings.
  • A few pieces of fat-wood. 


Some kind of small water-container should be carried; the water can be used for refilling the mKettle. This acts as an emergency to fill with water if necessary. I am not going to cover this in any detail now, because I shall cover the Milbank Bag and a means of water-filtering in another post. 


Carry some dried food and a bar of chocolate with you; these are light and make it easy to make up a quick and ready meal. One quick way is to use a 'Pot Noodle' but empty this into a small polythene bag to make it easier to carry. Can then be done in a cup which you carry. Make sure you are going to use it though since it will then go off quickly when opened. 

Survival Shelters


This is a simple shelter made from two tarps, one that is laid across a cross-piece mounted on two upright staves, with two leaning-staves for support. Another tarp is used as a base. Of course, if you have a long tarp then only one is needed. The front is pulled over the cross-stave and guy-ropes used to keep it tight. Face this with the wind at the back.

This shelter is made by tying a piece of cordage between two trees and holding the tarp to the cordage with 'Tarp Clips'. The back is held down by wooden pegs and a log placed right across to keep the wind from the back. Face this with the wind at the back. The trees can give some protection at the sides if they are large enough. 

This one was made by draping a tarp over a dead tree, making sure the tree is quite safe. It is tied at the front like a 'porch' using guy-ropes and wooden pegs. The back is held by wooden pegs and a log placed across it. Here a basha is used rather than a tarp - this folds down a lot smaller. 

This one was made using an old fishing-shelter whose rods had broken but whose framework was sound. It is held at the front by a cordage between two trees, and at points on the back and sides with guy-ropes.

The above shelter was made up of an old tarp that we found in the woodlands; this was draped over a cross-piece between two trees, with a stout framework as the back. One side has been protected by logs piled on top of each other, between two staves. (The other side was done later.)

This shelter stayed in this piece of woodland for around 6 years without being found; it was then taken down again and the wood scattered to show nothing of what we had done. 


  • A-Frame at the front, using two crossed staves.
  • One long stave running from the A-Frame to the back.
  • A basha is used as the cover, pegged down with wooden pegs (easily made with a knife). A small tarp makes up the base of the shelter. 

The advantage of this over the simple lean-to shelters is that it has protection on three sides and is open only at the front. Your rucksack can be placed over the front as protection, or you could make a front from sticks and leaves etc.

This one was made by using A-Frames at the front and the back, giving much more room than the first one. A Tarp is taken over the top cross-stave, and another smaller one tied across the back. 

The staves are rather large, but this one was done from wooden staves left over after a group of scouts used the area to make shelters - we merely used what was there already. This one made a very strong shelter, and there was plenty of room inside.


This one has been covered in another blog because it is a lot harder to do and takes much longer than the others. It is a semi-permanent shelter that was left on site for around 7 years before the area was 'cleared' by the Forestry Commission.


This is what i call a 'Tarp-Clip' although it probably has a far more technical name; it is used when the tarp-grommets are damaged. In this case it is used to clip the tarp over the cordage tied between two trees.