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Wonderment :)
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46camper: Sir; for all. Learning the compass values requires some thoughtful study.


https://americanhiking.org/resources/how-to-use-a-compass/
The most important piece of gear to help you find your way.

Compass Basics

A compass is one of the most basic navigation tools any hiker can own. It needs no batteries, works with any map, and even works without a map! While entire books have been written about navigating with a compass, every new compass user needs to know the basic concepts.

The first thing to realize when looking at your compass is that the floating needle is magnetized and the red end is always pointing towards magnetic north. No matter which way you turn the compass, the red needle stays fixed on magnetic north.
 

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Gun Toting Boeing Driver
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My EDC stuff is always streamlight mini-usb chargeable flashlight, pistol, spare mag, knife, tuff-writer mini-click pen, and Trump (usb-rechargeable) lighter. These along with a belt are on my person.

My PDW pack has some cool stuff in it; eye pro, ear pro, 550 cord bracelet, poncho, spare mags, lens cleaners and cloths, spare blue microfiber rags, multitool, usb-chargeable lighter, compass, weapon (with EoTech and Olight), change of clothes, shavers, tourniquet and small IFAK, pen, currency medium, flashlight, and spare batteries for EoTech and flashlight. It's not real heavy and in a backpack; most of the weight comes from the loaded spare mags and PDW.

My usual winter overcoat is an LAPG one I really like with built in hat and has gloves. Lotsa pockets if I need them.

Key is to have something that's quick to grab and has some useful tools in it that fits your particular situation. It's great to have water, but water's also very heavy stuff. IF you have a decent water source, iodine tabs (or some sanitizing source) and a container will do. Thing is to figure out where ya think you'll be operating and tailor your equipment for that as well as to-and-from trips.
 
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Wonderment :)
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information: For the new :) just because you have magnesium doesn’t make an expert.

https://gearjunkie.com/magnesium-ferrocerium-fire-starter

For this test we used the $5 Coghlans 7870, one of many similar products available. See the video tutorial and instructions below.

While the magnesium/ferrocerium method works, it’s hardly foolproof. Practice a few times in a controlled, safe situation before relying on this system in the woods.

Start A Fire With Magnesium
1. Prepare Fire Site. Pick a spot appropriate for a fire. Consider wind, precipitation, fire safety, and access to camping or cooking. Generally, it is best to use a pre-existing fire site in well-trafficked areas.

2. Collect Wood & Tinder. The base of your fire should be as dry as possible, such as bark from a dead tree. On that, you can build a tinder bunch using dry grass or twigs smaller than a match stick. Dry bark or sapwood also works well. Collect lots of small twigs and branches to grow the fire from infancy to a stable small blaze. Have a few larger, pinky-size sticks ready to add as the fire grows.
 

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......The first thing to realize when looking at your compass is that the floating needle is magnetized and the red end is always pointing towards magnetic north. No matter which way you turn the compass, the red needle stays fixed on magnetic north.
Assuming it is not near any ferrous metals, magnets, or electrical circuits.
 
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information: For the new :) just because you have magnesium doesn’t make an expert.

https://gearjunkie.com/magnesium-ferrocerium-fire-starter

For this test we used the $5 Coghlans 7870, one of many similar products available. See the video tutorial and instructions below.

While the magnesium/ferrocerium method works, it’s hardly foolproof. Practice a few times in a controlled, safe situation before relying on this system in the woods.

Start A Fire With Magnesium
1. Prepare Fire Site. Pick a spot appropriate for a fire. Consider wind, precipitation, fire safety, and access to camping or cooking. Generally, it is best to use a pre-existing fire site in well-trafficked areas.

2. Collect Wood & Tinder. The base of your fire should be as dry as possible, such as bark from a dead tree. On that, you can build a tinder bunch using dry grass or twigs smaller than a match stick. Dry bark or sapwood also works well. Collect lots of small twigs and branches to grow the fire from infancy to a stable small blaze. Have a few larger, pinky-size sticks ready to add as the fire grows.
Excellent format. Suggestion. Our method for winter work. Never practice unless it has rained at least 1 inch. You will need the fire the most for survival if you have cold rain, ice or sleet. If training a good soak with the hose will get the area wet in about 20 minutes. If it is summer or dry, just pile it up and light it, no talent needed.

I always teach to tape and wrap (cord to be used for other purposes) a 3 inch candle to the rod and 2 small Bic lighters. Gather a big pile of tiny tinder, a big pile of twigs, a small pile of branches 1 inch thick then a good sized pile of wood, like at least a bushel. Otherwise once you get it going in the wind or rain, you will be hustling around full time just chasing tiny twigs to keep it going. If you ever even spent time in a tent with ice on the ground then you know what I mean.

Then light the candle under the tinder, adding twigs, small branches and have them surrounded by the bigger wood which is being dried all the while. The candle should be good for a couple dozen wet fires. If you are going long and high, take 2 candles.

If there is water to be heated for sanitation or to be added to food, then the rocks holding up the pot or canteen cup, skillet or whatever should be in place the instant the fire starts with larger wood surrounding the whole fire pit and drying all the while. There are only so many BTUs do not waste them. The pot on top protects the growing little fire from wind and water.

Keep in mind that if you need the fire now, you will probably need it for hours, like the dark ones where you cannot see to run and gather wood and you want as big a bed of coals as you can get to lay close to.
JMHO
 

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For 50 years one thing I have carried and has served me well many times is large trash bags. I have cut slots in them and used them as poncho/raincoats and as emergency coats to keep people warm. Neat thing is they weigh almost nothing and take up little space.
And you can get them in stylish colors, too! :D
 

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For 50 years one thing I have carried and has served me well many times is large trash bags. I have cut slots in them and used them as poncho/raincoats and as emergency coats to keep people warm. Neat thing is they weigh almost nothing and take up little space.
Yes I have made rain coats out of them before in an emergency. I remember one time hunting and started raining hard and another time out in the boat and storm came up. Also they take up no room and light. Can be used to collect water, to carry bulky items or larger items. Also to hide and bury things in or keep other stuff dry.
 

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For 50 years one thing I have carried and has served me well many times is large trash bags. I have cut slots in them and used them as poncho/raincoats and as emergency coats to keep people warm. Neat thing is they weigh almost nothing and take up little space.
I agree 100% on this, I high reward for little effort but I order months worth or more at a time for right here at the house. Used them on many hunts for the walk home because I always take one.
 

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Discussion Starter #52
I have a few myself . There just handy to have . So I have one ready for the kit when I get all put together.


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The ONE item left out by everybody, is a quick apply TOURNIQUET, that you can apply one handed.

Better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it.

Since you can bleed to death in less than 3 minutes, if you cut/tore open a major artery (hatchet, knife, broken branch, punji stick, bullet hole, etc.), it would be a good item to have in your pocket, readily available.
 
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Some of that "dust" you put on cuts and gunshot wounds to stop bleeding would be high on my list. I'm quite negligent in that I don't have any. Should at least keep some here around the house. Sorry I don't remember what it is really called.

Quick Clot, Styptic powder...

Trauma pack might be worth its weight in gold some day.
https://www.grainger.com/product/ADVENTURE-MEDICAL-First-Aid-Kit-35KT11
 

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Some of that "dust" you put on cuts and gunshot wounds to stop bleeding would be high on my list. I'm quite negligent in that I don't have any. Should at least keep some here around the house. Sorry I don't remember what it is really called.
QUICK CLOT (Previously mentioned by Outpost75 in REPLY #17)

In a dire situation, ground coffee and sugar will be a big help. MUST have compression bandage, too.
 

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A guy taking an aspirin a day or a Plavix a day like me SHOULD be carrying it in his back pocket every day if he/I had any sense.
 

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Something I don't see discussed a lot is sub freezing temperatures.

I recall doing some week long winter camping many years ago. Our "tents" were sheets of clear poly: we bunched soft moss into the edges to make "tie points" for the support lines. One night we had minus 20 and 40 mph winds (measured). But those poly tents held up very well. And no one got frostbite or hypothermia.

Food was a consideration. Besides dry stuff, we had canned tuna packed in oil and peanut butter. I can't recall what else except freeze dried stuff. Freeze dried isn't bad when you're hungry.
Oh, and pack the saltine crackers in a hard plastic box. I know the crumbles are just as nutritious as the whole cracker, but it sucks having to mix them into the peanut butter because all of the crackers got crushed.

Keeping water in liquid form was a challenge, and you need lots of it in sub freezing temps. We usually chopped thru the ice where streams were flowing so the ice was thinner. A WW2 surplus GI folding shovel worked for that and we boiled our water before drinking. There were no chemical plants upstream but who knows what else could have been in the water. We always filled a canteen and put in in the pack so it would be against our back and clothing around it.

Wool socks. Merino works great. I have a supply of Dickies merino wool socks that were being sold off by Walmart 6 or 8 years ago for $1.00 a pair. I guess folks don't like merino wool so they didn't sell well. I wish they were clearing out more of those.
Those socks are great in summer too because they wick moisture away from the skin.

We had small, Optimus type gasoline stoves and those worked great too. Heat up lunch pretty quickly - and no smoke, although you can hear the flame roaring quite a distance away. Although probably not as noisy as a group of people talking and clanking metal cups.
These days, I carry a small Trangia alcohol stove when out hunting. Of course, you have to think about a fuel supply. One of those folding "pine cone burning stoves" might be a better choice.

Anyway, just something to think about. Water, cans of stew, etc. Although, as much as I dislike Spam, having it semi-frozen might just make it taste better.
 

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........ Although, as much as I dislike Spam, having it semi-frozen might just make it taste better.
LOL!!!!!! Sounds like snacks for Polar Bears!

 
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I did the same with those Merino wool socks. I started buying them when I noticed them in a bargain bin at Bass Pro or other store like them. Only had to wear those a couple times and I started buying them up every time I saw them on sale "cheap".

Now you can hardly find the REAL ones at ANY PRICE any more. They label them Merino Wool then if you read the particulars, you are lucky to find some with 30% real merino wool.
 

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Discussion Starter #60
I am a big fan of wool of all types . I’m lucky I live close to the Rocky boot store .They usually have a decent selection of wool socks . Even have some with a high content of merino wool . I also am a buyer of military surplus wool clothing and vintage wool clothing.
As far as the C.A.t tourniquet I have one and have quick clot . I also have some stops bleeding brand of hemostatic powder in 25mg pack .
I’m also looking into getting a Israeli bandage or two . Also am wanting to get Celox A applicator.


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