Thursday, February 28, 2013

Diary 28 feb

Yesterday my girlfriend came home from work but before she came home she did some shopping (woman...). This time however she bought something for me that was usefull.

This is a LED lamp for camping, nighttime fishing and other outdoor activities. It works on 4 AA batteries and it has 2 modes.. a normal bright light and a small red light that gives you just a little bit of light but saves energy. As you can see it has a hook so you can hang it inside your tent, or outside since it's water proof.  She bought it at Action for about 3 euro's.. Awesome..

As you can imagine I examined this camping light and wondered if I would take it with me... Again, is it realy usefull or will it just take up space? I decided to take it with me, it is always good to have a little light when it gets dark. Once the batteries ar dead I might turn it into a cup (it looks like it has potential to turn into a cup) or I would just throw the darn thing away... I still have a candle or an oillamp.  Anyhow.. it's added to the items list.

So what else has been happening?
Well my GF wants to go out with some of her friends next weekend, you know.. head to smelly bars, listening and dancing to awefull music and of course spending a shitload of money on alcohol in an effort to get drunk or rather sick. Naturaly I will stay at home watching the kids while while she's off wasting money and braincells.  One of her friends, a guy called jeffrey wanted to crash at my place and sleep it off. He was a bit upset that I did not want that to happen. What did he expect? I have seen the guy once and then I have to let him sleep on my couch in my home? No way dude.. Nothing personal but I don't let people sleep overnight in my home when I barely know them.. I have children and therefore I have to be responsible.. I don't want them to wake up and find some drunken guy they don't know in their home. And I also don't wan't to get my camera stolen again. I'm a 32 years old father, I'm not in college anymore.
Once I have left this godforsaken place she can do whatever she likes and invite whoever she likes.

My days among those who dwell on the streets of modern society are numbered.. The pressure is overwelming but I remain enthousiastic and optimistic. This blog has over 5000 pageviews.. that's more then good enough for me. I started this blog in November last year and now that the end is near I am beginning to wonder what to post in these 2 final months.. So here are topics that I will write about before I'll leave.

-About hygiene in the bush and it's importance
-About medicine and heaing plants
-About how to navigate without a compass
-A tutorial on how to make a fish trap and primitive fishing hook
-A tutorial on how to make an arrow
-About my tin can Hobo cooking set and the test
-About why I will not take a firearm with me.
-My favourite youtube bushcraft/survival videos
-Food for on the early stages of my journey

And probably more. I will also write a few post that will be notes or letters to those I leave behind (My children, girlfriend even my family-in-law) Since these letters are personal and just for them I will write them in the language we speak, Dutch.

Thats all folks, take care and have a great day

The Spice Girls - Viva forever

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

A quest for water

Of all the survival skills, those that deal with water are the most important.. It is the no1 most important thing to have in a survival situation. Forget food and shelter and focus on how to get clean drinking water first.

Finding water

If a person is lost in the wild the first thing to do is find water even when one does not feel thirsty (you will be soon). A person can go without water for 3 days, that's a common rule. In hot enviroments however you can die in less then 2 days so finding water is vital. It doesn't realy matter if you find a small pond, a lake or a waterfall aslong as it's not salt water. Once you have found water you need to make a choice.. Do you filter or clean the water or do you drink it straight from the stream. If you are thirsty you can be tempted to drink it immediately without filtering it and there definately is a risk involved here. Water may look clean but there may be a dead animal rotting in that water a short distance away from you. And waters close to cities should be avoided.

Cleaning water

If you think your watersource is not clean then it needs to be filtered. Everyone has their own opinion about what is the best way to do this. If you ask me, If you're in doubt about if it's safe to drink then you need to boil the water. Some say you need to boil for 3 or even 10 minutes.. this is absolute cr*p.. Once the water has reached it's boiling point all the water would be free from unhealthy bacteria.

If the water looks very dirty then just boiling it might not be enough. Camping and other outdoor stores often sell water filters usualy these are pumps, dirty water goes in and clean water gets pumped out. You can also but water purification tablets and they are often put in survival kits.

There is also a real populair design for a do it yourself water filter. You take an empty plastic soda bottle, get rid of the top and cut off the bottom with a knife, clean the inside with a little water. Then you take a piece of cotton cloth (other materials might work?) and you put this on the inside of the bottle at the top. Now it is time to fill it up with multiple layers of sand, gravel, dirt and powdered charcoal. Now you hang it over your canteen, bowl or whatever you're using. Water is poured at the bottom of the bottle, gets filtered and is drinkable once it exits the bottletop.

What if there is no water?

There are always places on earth where there are no lakes, rivers or other source of water and i'm not just talking about the deserts. You can walk for miles and miles and still not see any water. So what are other ways to get water?
Snow seems a good idea and it is, however eating snow can get your body temperature falling rapidly to the point where it gets realy dangerous, and often it can make you feel even more thirsty. So it needs to be melted and warmed up a bit. The problem with snow is that snow is made up of 80% air.. So you'll need large quiantities in order to fill a canteen. Not the best option but it might be the only option available in some areas. In hot areas you may look for dark areas in the soil, when you dig them out there a big chance of finding water. Also look for signs of animal activity, in areas where lots of animals come together there is usualy water nearby. Also remember that rainwater is always fresh and does not need to be filtered.
You can also get water from vegetation. A populair technique is to bind a clear plastic bag over a branch. When the water inside the plant evaporazes it gets traped in the bag. Here is also a good video of a different techniques.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Diary 25 feb

Another lame day.. The kids are at school, milady is off trying to get her drivers license. I hope she'll pass.. no wait.. I don't care really..

Today I will try fire making with the friction methods since I failed at making fire with the flint & steel method. I did got some advice to use an old file instead of a knife.. will give this a try later.
The plan is to head into the garden, into the shed and not come out until I get a good ember.
And while I'm at it I can also test my hobo tin cooking set.

I feel tired, very tired.. I guess this is because my future journey is on my mind every day and the whole day.. I just can't seem to give it a rest every now and then. Do I pack enough food? Where will I go? Could this be edible? Is my backpack sturdy enough? or is it too heavy in the longrun?
The part of my brain that has to make decisions is doing overtime and it must be overheated.
Tiredness, a lack of energy, fear of failure and other negativity is trying to get a hold on me..

Now that my days in society are numbered the idea of heading out into the unknown and being all by myself starts to scare me a little for the first time. The only thing that scares me most is staying.
The idea of being completely alone out there is liberating and scary at the same time. I become more and more aware of the possible dangers. Not just physical dangers but mental aswell.

Sometimes I look around me.. I see my girlfriend, her sister, her father, her family, her friends, my neighbours, my daughter's teacher.. I realised I got to know quite a lot of people over the past years. They are all strangers to me, every single one of them. Even people who call me their friend, I have no idea who the hell they are even though they have been visiting us for years. I have nothing in common with these folks. I start to wonder if I will ever find someone that I have at least one thing in common with. All these guys can talk about is their mobile phones, their tablets, their career, their car.. it goes on and on and on.. jesus!

My girlfriend just called.. she passed.. now she is well on her way to get a drivers license and a car.. good for her.

I used to be one of them you know.. I would buy an mp3 player because I thought that would make me happy. After a while the mp3 player was "old" and others convinced me that it was no longer "cool".. The mp3 player did no longer made me happy. Then I bought a new mp3 player thinking "this will make me happy"...
Then I stepped out of this everlasting circle and realised that most people were nothing more but sheep!
Why do I let others tell me what to buy or what is cool? Why do you want to have the same car your neighbour has? Why can't you make up your own mind? You say you are an individual yet you are a sheep! If a 100 guys shout "Go left!" you will go left..    Sheep I tell ya, SHEEP!!! Bèhhhhh...!

Hahaha, I'm just kidding you guys. But there is some truth to this story. We should often ask ourselves why we buy so much stuff. Do you realy need it or did you just buy it to be "hip like others". And who cares what others think. People should like you for who you are not for what you own.. remember.. be yourself, don't follow the herd ;)

That's it for now. Time for the song of the day

Red Hot Chillie Peppers - Under the bridge 

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Diary 23 feb

Yesterday I decided it was time to learn how to make fire without matches, a lighter, firesteel etc.
I still have not managed to make a fire with natural materials and knowing how to do this before I leave is vital. I tried the bowdrill and fire plough techniques and I get smoke but not a good amber and it leaves me wondering what I do wrong. Since it is still cold outside I decided to practice making sparks with stones yesterday. About a year ago I found many black, shiny stones during my vacation, I brought many home with me because I naturally assumed that this was flint or Vuursteen (Firestone) as we call them in Holland.

So yesterday I tried the Flint & Steel method again but I do not get sparks! Frustrates the hell out of me.
I do not have a good iron striker but I have several carbon steel knives that should do the trick.. but it doesn't.. I tried it with a piece of flint and my opinel and did not get any sparks. Then I even tried a piece of flint on another piece of flint.. Stupidly enough that did worked.. I got very few sparks but they're useless. One piece of flint even had some iron/rust content. I have seen how it should be done on tutorials. Either there is a secret to this technique I don't know about, Or the pieces of flint are in fact not flint at all and just looks like it.   I better try and find some help online.

While I was add it smashing flint on flint a flake broke of. A realy thin piece of flint. Well if I can't use this crap for making sparks or a fire then why not try to make a arrowhead out of that thin flake. Making a stone arrowhead with my level of experience will take at least a few days so I'll get back on that later.

Today I am going to read the Lord of the Rings one last time since I cannot bring it with me, during my final days here among humanity I will read all my books and watch my favourite movies one last time and then throw them away. Going away and leave nothing behind.

I am not completely sure but there is a chance that before I go I have one final holiday with my gf and the kids. A holiday in a park in a forest. That gives me the chance to practice some skills and sleep a night outside before I actually head out. But since my gf nowadays is trying to get her driving license and now she has joined a gym it is very possible that we won't be able to afford a quick vacation. I hate it when it's all about her.

That's it for now, take care everyone, here is the song of the day.
"Let's hear it for the hottest band in the world..."

 KISS - Shandi

Top 5 of odd religions

This has nothing to do with my journey, with bushcraft or survival. So it will be placed in the "other" category on this blog.

I was raised by my non-religious parents yet I have always felt the need for spirituality in my life and because I was raised an Atheist no religion was forced down my throat and I would have the unique opportunity to find my own path early in life. Finding that path was a huge struggle.. I started studying religions and eventualy learning about the various religions became more of a hobby, from the big, well known religions such as Christianity and Islam until smaller, less known religions such as Rastafari, Shinto and Zoroastrianism.

So here is the top 5 of odd religions, or rather "the top 5 of odd religions that I have encountered and studied" but that becomes such a mouthfull.

5- Gnostic Christianity

This is definately one of the more interesting religions I've ever looked into. Christianity is the biggest religion and as we know there are many different traditions within this path such as Catholic and Protestant. In the past there were also other traditions that went extinct and these traditions often believed in a whole different kind of Christianity. Things and ideas that would now be called herassy where pretty normal back then. Many Gnostic Christians believe that Jesus was a very important spiritual teacher but not "the son of God".. just as human as you and me. Unlike many Christians the Gnostics read more then just the Bible, other texts such as the Dead sea scrolls and Nag hammadi texts are very important to them and they date back during the time of Christ himself.

4- Satanism

Yes I have explored Satanism.. Modern satanism to be more precise, since there are different kinds of paths that are called Satanism.  Modern Satanism has nothing to do with worshipping some kind of devil and the devil is seen more as a symbol. I have read the Satanic Bible and other works of Anton Lavey, the founder of Modern Satanism and there are definately things about Satanism that I agree with but no matter how interesting it was reading about it, it wasn't a path for me. The worst thing about Modern Satanism is, at some degree, it's name.. Satanism.. By naming it as such they got a lot of idiotic 'followers' who just call themselves 'Satanist' in order to be cool or to freak out their parents. The biggest sin according to this religion is Stupidity. Nothing in the world is more stupid then teenie rebels and goths who practice a religion because it seems cool, and they tend to be the majority of it's followers.. Making a fool out of those who do practice it seriously.

3- Jediism

This religion is growing more rapidly then ever and it has more followers then you think. Jedi temples, schools and forums are everywhere and they are very active aswell. Dispite the fact that Jediism gets bad reputation from non-believers I find it hard to discover anything "bad" about this religion. From the outside it all looks a little stupid.. Guys dressed up as jedi's who are roleplaying and living in a fantasy world.. However if you look deep inside this religion you'll see what it's all about. To a jedi the most important things are; Meditation, Following the Jedi code and helping others. This makes it somewhat similar to Buddhism, or thats how I experienced it. Robes and lightsabers are all items that are merely symbolic.  They also believe in the force, seems a little weird but there are other religions believe who believe in something similar, it can be compared with the concept of Chi

2- Religio Romana

Religio Romana is a form of Reconstructionism and reconstructionism means the reconstruction of an ancient religion. Religio Romana, as you can tell by it's name is the ancient religion of the Roman peoples.
There are more types of Reconstructionism such as Celtic reconstructionism, Kemitism (Ancient Egyptian), Slavic Reconstructionism, Hellenismos (Greek). New forms are also on the rise such as Aztec reconstructionism. The populair religion called Asatru is often seen as a Viking/Saxon type of reconstructionism. All these religions are a form of ancient Paganism that believe in multiple dieties.
Religio Romana has quite alot of followers and the religion is pretty complex.

1- Matrixism

Here it is.. If anyone asks you what you're religion is and you are not in the mood for talking, say it's Matrixism, That'll leave them speechless.
Matrixism is on the number one of my list and it is one of those religions you probably never heard about and it only has a handfull of followers, dispite the fact that it is unknown it is a religion with a coolness factor and learning about it was a great experience. Just like Jediism it appears to be based on the philosophy behind a hollywood movie. The followers believe in "the one" which can be seen as believing in the coming of a future massiah, They also believe that the world we see around us is not reality, not the real world like in the movie and they consider psychedelics to be the most important sacrements (blue pil, red pill)..

So I went looking for a religion that fits me and instead I found myself learning about different religions as a hobby. Some other religions i have studied but that are far from odd are Rastafari and Shinto, to name a few.
So have I found a religion that I decided to follow and practice? Yes.. Buddhism.
No real surprise really, Buddhism was always something that made sence to me. Also since it has no Gods, No holy but only important texts, No leader and since they do not believe in a future devine apocalypse it feels more like a way of life/philosophy then a religion. In my opinion Buddhism is a path that helps me help myself in order to help others in the future.

If you want more info on the religions mentioned above.....

Gnostic Christianity

Modern Satanism


Religio Romana and other reconstructionist religions


Thursday, February 21, 2013

Diary 21 feb

The letter to my father is also finished and is ready to be posted, but it has to wait a couple of months. I still can't find my mothers adress so I might have to send her an email instead of the traditional letter, which sucks.

The kids are at school and my gf is at the gym.. and I just gotta respect that. She became a member there a few days ago and this is the second time she's going. But personaly it does not change anything between her and me. Looks are good, but it's the personality that you have to live with day by day. If she keeps holding on like this and becomes a size 6 she will still be a rotten egg that looks good on the outside.

In my last post I wrote about how to make incense without the typical asian ingredients.
Today I burned the incense I was making in that specific tutorial and here are the results:
It went sweet!!! I lit the top of the incense cone and it burnt all the way down without a flame as it is supossed to be. A few concerns however.. First, it burned way to fast, it was over in a minute or so, might use less charcoal next time.. Second, I do not to find a better binder, it was way to brittle.. Third, A scent definately came of other then that of burned charcoal but I did'nt like it, that's the least of my problems, just find better ingredients next time.

I have been looking into my food problem lately and I have upgraded the amount of food I will be taking with me. Such as noodles, instant soups and I'm stiil looking into foods that doesn't need to be heated.
I have updated the Items list , the list that shows you all the items I will be taking with me on my journey/trip/queste.. Some items were taken off the list most likely because they were not important enough to take with me. Other items were added to the list, mostly food and water.
And other items were modified.. For example I wanted to bring a book with me purely for entertainment, back then I decided to choose The lord of the rings. Now I changed that to The hobbit.. why?
The Hobbit is about 250 pages, LOTR about 870!! I can easily say that will make my backpack lighter by a kilo, at least.. (aslong as it's tolkien)

When I first made the list (2 years ago) it was huge, I was being unrealistic, Even if I could carry all that stuff on my back it would become sheer hell after carrying it for weeks on my back. But i've learned a lot since then.. I got rid of stuff..
And now I often look at the list and ask myself 2 questions when looking at every individual item; Do I realy need it? and Can it be made in the wilderness instead?

That's it for now hope you enjoyed

Deep Purple - Child in time

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

The art of making incense

Huh?.. How does making incense help you survive in the wild? Well it doesn't but it does make a fun experiment when you're out in the woods for a while and yes it does have some practical uses.
Other then being an aid during meditation the scent can make you fall asleep easier or it can even be used as a insect repellant (depending on the ingredients). You can find alot of good ingredients at your local supermarket, alot of typical kitchen herbs can be used but many other ingredients can be gathered for free in the outdoors and that's what making it is so much fun.. If you want to mass produce your own incense it's gonna cost ya, If you want to make some incense for personal use it can be done without spending a penny.

So here's what I did.. Remember that this is not a tutorial, this is an experiment.

Incense is made by using a Binding ingredient, a Burning ingredient and finaly the ingredient(s) that cause the Scent. When we think of incense we immediatly think of Asia, that's where most of the incense is made. Therefore when we look for recipies to make incense we see that most of the ingredients are herbs, resins, flowers and woods that grow in Asia only.  For example the sticks in sticks incense are thin slices of bamboo. One of the ingredients you often find in incense is Makko, if i'm correct this is a binding and burning ingredient in one.
Unfortunately I live in Holland so either I have to buy the special ingredients (expensive in the long run, and where's the sport in that) or I have to improvise, and that's just what I did.

For my burning ingredient I needed to make charcoal. I already did a tutorial on how to make charcloth, you can find it here. Making charcoal can be done with the same method.

After leaving it on a fire for 30 minutes there was no more smoke coming out of the small hole. After cooling it down I opened up the tin  and out came some nice chunks of charcoal. Knowing how to make Charcoal is very usefull.. It can be used for Drawing, Heating up a fire, Explosives (that's between you and me haha) and fireworks, Blacksmithing, making Dyes and pigments, Blackpowder and even to tread food poisoning or in this case, to make incense.

I could not find my mortar and pestle so instead I used a pencil and a small glass to crush up the charcoal in a very fine powder. I got another glass and in there went the ingredients that should cause the smell, in this case Basil and the bark of Ficus Ginseng (a bonsai species). I also took a few leaves of a purple flower, dried it, crushed it, no idea what it's called.. I didn't even leave the house. After crushing that up I took my binding ingredient which was.. here it comes.. water! That was easy..

All the ingredients mixed together

So here is the incense I've made. I decided to make those cone shaped incensebecause that seems easier. If I ever get better at this I might try stick incense. The two cones look the same but they're not.
The cone in the front has a water binder, it is very brittle and I guess it can easily fall apart, I made it two days ago and at this moment it has become very dry and I will test it today (for the result look at my next diary entry)

The cone in the back is with a honey binder (I've read somewhere it could be used as a binder). I made it approx 2 weeks ago and it is still sticky and not ready to burn. It is far from brittle but who cares if it doesn't even burn.  Both cones are pitch black from the charcoal, not what you expect incense to look like. Then again.. this is what my ancestors would have come up with if they'd made incense instead of the ancient Chinese... It was a fun experiment and I will try this more often. If you want to make your own incense then give it a try, now you know this can be a hobbie that can be very low costs. experiment with all kinds of herbs, resins and make mixtures of your own.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Diary 19 feb

Realisation starts to kick in and it kicks in hard..
I am actually going to do this! This is really happening!

Just a few more months and then I will leave, It will turn my life upside down. It will be an experience unlike any other. I will do what few people have done before me. I will, one day, have a story to tell, oh boy.
I'm turning my back to all the drama and anger and I will head on towards a simplified, peacefull way of living.

I have started to write letters to my parents. The letter to my mother (and sister) is finished but I can't find her address online.. Ain't that something.. I don't know my mothers address.. Well then again we barely spoke in recent years still I think I owe her a letter, a few final words from her son, rather she cares or not is upto her. The letter to my father is not yet finished but I will finish it tonight, his address was easily found on google.

I will post these letters once i'm out of the door. It is important to me that I send them since they are about why I leave, where I'm going and that they'll be on my mind.

I will also be spending less time online apart from posting on this blog and learning skills I won't be needing a computer. I have changed my name into Ralph Sungila instead of my real last name so I am harder to find for people who actually know me. Sungila means "Fox" or "Red Fox" in the language of the Lakota natives.. the name suits me. I have also changed my google and twitter password so that "Those we do not speak off" cannot change or delete my blog once I'm gone.

I need to spend more time offline to practice the skills I've learned. Now that the weather slowly gets warmer I will go outdoors as much as I can. The most important skill I still need to practice is making a fire from natural materials. I know how it's done but haven't managed to get a fire going.. Become good at the skill of fire making before I leave is a must!!

It's time for the song of the day.. Perhaps you remember the Kelly Family? those long haired children who were all brothers and sisters and formed a family band? well they've came a long way since then and the video proves it ;)
That's it for now boys and girls.. Take care of yourself and eachother ;)

The kelly Family - Break the walls

My traveling bug-out gear

In November last year I wrote a thing or two about the gear I wanted to take with me into the wild. Since then I have bought and made new stuff and the What-to-take-with-me-list has changed alot since then.
You can read the november article here

So here is the updated list again with pictures to give you a better idea as to what I'll be carrying.

Well here it is, unfortunately the pictures turned out realy dark but still it is easy to see that I have been upgrading. Let's look threu the mess (and darkness) and see what's there..
On the right is all my clothing.. gloves, shemach and some of the clothes such as a t-shirt, socks are wrapped in a plastic bag to keep them absolutely waterproof.
In the front is my hunting airgun and above the airgun are smaller items and tools such as my knives, rope and such. It's kinda hard to see but in front of the bag is my poncho rolled up and in front of the poncho is some first aid items.
Finaly on the left there's my canteen aswell as a waterbottle, battery's for my camera and the camera bag, a blue box with fishing stuff and on the top-left is a black book with a golden ankh on it.. this is my field manual.

Here from a different angle..

What you didn't see in the previous photo's was the food that I will be taking with me so here it is. In the back is a can with multiple spicies. The 3 bags contain (from left to right): Flour, Rice and Pasta's. Then there's the Instant soup, some Bouillon cubes, Teabags, Small cup of jam, Some folded alluminiumfoil and the 2 black disks are two Buddyburners that I made in a previous post.

Am I happy with this?? No!!
I have two reasons why I'm not happy about it.. First; It is not near enough and second; All these food items either need to be cooked or processed in another way that requires an open flame...
Like I explained before, Wildcamping is at least tolerated once I've entered Poland but to get there I have to cross Germany where laws are more strict. So idealy I should have enough food that doesn't require cooking until I reach that border.

So when it comes to gear, clothing and survival items I'm all set and ready to go at this point it's just having enough food at the first stages of my journey that concerns me. Water is a big issue aswell. I will need to drink a lot of water since I'll be cycling for miles and miles, sure I will find rivers and streams to fill the bottles but that water needs to be filtered and that, again, requires boiling.
So that gives me 3 options..
1 - Buy more food before I leave that does not need to be cooked.
2- Accept the risks and cook the food anyway, dispite it being wildcamping and therefore, illegal.
3- Bring some money with me and buy food/water along the way

Since I don't want people to bother me and since I don't want to bother anyone else on my trip I won't go for option 2 unless I have no other choice.. I don't want to draw attention to myself.

But back to the Gear.. I have one more photo for ya.

So here is my fishing gear that I will rely on alot because I love fishing and my favorite type of food is fish aswell.    In the front is a fishing float/bobber that stays pretty much visible even at dawn. I will only bringing one with me since they are easy to make if I lose it. Then there are softbait fishing lures which are great for bigger fish and I great option if you don't have any live bait with you.  The fishingline is cheap but it does the trick and can be used for snare trapping aswell and I will be taking some more fishing line with me that is less cheap and made for carp fishing.. so pretty strong.   At the top are fishing hooks and fishing leads in various shapes and sizes. The bag on the left contains small breaklights for fishing at night.

Well that's it for now.
Once again I must add that I might not bring all of these items with me on my journey or queste. It is also easy to see that not all this stuff fits in my small backpack, Then again I have cycling bags attached to the bicycle and small items can also be put in my pockets. Still if it becomes to heavy I will leave less important stuff behind. I have to make choices.. If I could I would bring a huge alpine backpack with me, a 5 star tent, an awesome hunting rifle and tons of ammo, a gas stove, and throw in a hunting dog aswell now we're at it.
But my budget won't allow it and how on earth would I carry all that junk by myself?

No sir, there are no sponsors here; This is what you get when a guy decides to leave mankind behind and head into the wilderness with little or no money.
Hope you enjoyed

Friday, February 15, 2013

Some of my recent DIY projects

As you all know by now I am a creative spirit.. I love to build things from scratch and I made alot of things in the period when I was without a compact camera so I could not show you all of the projects I was working on. Now that I do have a camera I just had to show you some of the items.

Well here ya go.. I'm sorry about the dark picture and the awful colour of the background :)

Let's start with the shoes.. I got the pattern from a website that was about early medieval reenactment. The pattern apparently was for making (Anglo) Saxon shoes. I made them from sturdy, black leather that I got from an old leather jacket (Grease style) and I used soft fleece for the inner layer which feels better on bare feet. If you look closely you'll see that there are 4 holes in each shoe for short laces but those are not necessary as they fit perfect. Making these shoes was hell and it took me quite some time.

Then there is the Boomerang. I did not make the boomerang myself. I bought it but I didn't like the plain wood design so I got myself some paint and this is what it turned into. Traditionally boomerangs were used for hunting birds but I will use it for fun out there (though I might give it a try).

Between the boomerang and the shoes lays a small Pipe that I did make from scratch. From leftover wood to be more precise. It was fun to make and I made it without power tools and as you can see I do use it. Despite the fact that I want to quit smoking I will take it with me. I want to quit being addicted to tobacco but I will continue on herbal smoking (No, I don't mean cannabis). As you can see I was inspired by Native American pipes but it is in no way meant to be a peacepipe.

Finally on the left there are 2 bags I made.. On the top a simple bag with a circular design, In it are items to make incense (another recent hobby of mine). And on the bottom is a rectangular bag that was inspired by (again) Native American tobacco bags.

Well that's it for now, As you can see I have not been sitting still. Finally below is a more detailed picture of the boomerang and how it looked when I got it.. Take care now everyone!


Diary 15 feb

Not smoking is hard on me and I definately have fall backs every now and then, which isn't good for my health and which in turn isn't good for my condition, something I still hope to improve.

Lately I'm taking a hard look at all the stuff I'm bringing with me, all the selfmade projects and items, all the clothes.. And now I just need to pick carefully the items that I truly need. For example; The crossman airgun that I will be taking with me is the heaviest item in the kit, It is nothing but an airpistol with a shoulderstock. And a shoulderstock makes shooting easier but if I have to, I will leave it here to safe space and weight. Then there's the thick blanket I was planning on taking with me for sleeping, It takes up so much space that I can't put it in the bag and have to strap it on top of the bag. But do I realy, truly, need to bring it with me? I will be leaving during the hottest months of the year.. Could I not just sleep in my clothes? When winter comes making a blanket myself with fur isn't such a strange idea.

At the moment I'm looking at each and every item and ask myself  'Is it usefull?' I have to keep it real.. All I realy need to take with me is Clothing, Food and several smaller items that are extremely usefull and that cannot be made in the wild (Compass, Fishinghooks, Maps, Firesteel etc).

3 more months left and bored like hell because I have less stuff to do. I am still working on my field manual, something I will write about later on.

The Cranberries - Zombie

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

5 Primitive cooking methods

Imagine yourself being lost in the wild.. you find yourself in a place where food is abundant but you have no pans or other cooking utensils so now what? You have to go primitive, that's what. If you think you need a stainless steel pan in order to make a meal, read on and be amazed.

Cooking with a hot rock
It does not get much more simple then this. A large, flat rock is placed on a campfire and slowly heats up.
Then you can fry anything you want on top of it.. meat, fish, vegetables, eggs.. you name it.

Boiling with hot rocks
While some things require frying, others need boiling. For this method you need a campfire and some sort of bowl made out of clay or wood. Or perhaps you're lucky enough to find a stone that is naturally curved like a bowl. While your campfire is burning gather rocks and place them into the fire. These rocks should be smooth and not porous as those may explode in the heat.  Then it's time to fill the bowl with fresh water and the ingredients that need cooking and carefully add the hot stones.

Baking in hot ash
So for we covered Boiling and Frying but some of the tastiest foods require baking. Baking bread (or cookies or whatever) can be done simple by making the dough and placing it on top of hot ash of a leftover fire, to some this doesn't sound very healthy but most who have tried it agree that this 'ash bread' has a great taste unlike any other type of bread.

Smoking your food
Another great way of cooking is by smoking it. You can build a smoking rack and place it over a fire and hang whatever needs smoking over it like on the video below or a similair construction.
Meat and fish are populair products to smoke but vegetables and fruits works aswell. It gives a nice taste and it is the best way of preserving your food if you don't have a fridge.
Covering a smoking rack with a plastic sheet or leaves so the smoke gets trapped inside is always the best option.

video by sigma3survivalschool
Cooking with clay pottery
This is another fun way of cooking and all you need is being in the right area, which is an area with soil that's rich in clay. Making a clay pot that can be heated in a fire without breaking is kind of hard so this definately isn't the easiest cooking method. There are also different kinds of clay that come in various colors from red ochre 'till chalk-like white clay. and some add other ingredients to the clay in order to make it more fire resistant. Some clay types, once heated in the fire, stay hard and are waterproof. Other types soften up once you add water to them even while it was rockhard after heating it in the fire.. I'm speaking from experience.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

So.. I have quit smoking

Yesterday I've quit smoking cold turkey.
I have been trying to quit several times and I wanted to quit since a few years, yet I always found myself looking for excuses so I could keep on smoking... "if I don't smoke I realy have nothing else to do", "my life is to messed up now to quit".. and so on.

At the moment I'm doing allright but I know it will get harder.. I started smoking when I was still in school. And I soon turned into a obsessive smoker.

The real reason why I quit now is because of my condition. Lately i'm into fitness and not smoking makes training alot easier. When I was 23 I started taekwondo.. the most awesome sport I ever did.. I remember during a warming-up one of the guys came to me and said; You smoke don't you? And he was right. I probably was the only smoker in the group and I was the only one who was totally broken after the warming-up, before the real training started.

Anyhow, all I have to do in order to quit is keeping myself buzy so I don't think about smoking all the time.
3 months untill I leave..... I must have loads of things to do..

Monday, February 11, 2013

Diary 11 feb

Hahaha I just find out something funny! As all of you know I am planning to leave modern society in secrecy in May. But guess what.. When I type in my name in Google this blog is the first result!

So much for secrecy huh?

My father, my gf, the neighbour, anyone who does a search for me online will find this blog first so now I just need to find out how to change my google name. Most of the people I know wouldn't care if they'd find out and many are also to stupid to understand basic English... but still...

At the moment it's peacefull and silent over here, the miss is off to work, my kids are being creative with pen and paper so I have all the time in the world to do work on my wilderness field manual, which is what my next post will be about.

Mama Said - Metallica

Wooden turtle into bowl

It was about time to test my crooked knife..

Last year my family in law went on holiday to Gambia and when they returned home they gave 'us' some wooden Gambian crafts including a set of small wooden turtles..
Jeezz.. thanks guys.. you don't have to do that.. realy, you don't....

Anyhow, So yesterday I took my crooked knife, the turtle and turned it into a bowl. I have no idea what type of wood this turtle is made of but it is very soft and the knife goes threu it like butter. It was a fun project. I won't be using the bowl, it's to small but it was a fun test project.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

My selfmade backpack version 2.0

My backpack is now finished, for everyone who lost track of the process (can't blame you) here's what happened..

I bought a ALICE (US army) backpack, the 100ltr version. Which is great for hiking long distances and camping. But since I will be cycling alot during my journey I needed a more lightweight and less massive type of backpack.
So I took an old camo sportsbag (those rectangular bags you carry over your shoulder) and turned it into a large backpack by adding stuff from the ALICE pack (such as the external bags).
But guess what.. It was still too big!!

So I headed back to the drawing board.. I needed something that could carry all my stuff yet it had to be small and comfortable enough to carry on my back for miles of cycling.
I realised quickly that it was mission impossible, It could not be done with the materials and tools I had.

Dispite all the drama I did make my final backpack out of a simple, small schoolbag!
I guess it's a 40ltr bag.. It is impossible to get all my gear, clothing and food in that tiny little bag but.. I also have a cycling bag (those double bags over the rear wheal, paperboy style) and they can carry alot of stuff.
Anyhow.. here's the small backpack..

So this is what the bag looks like when it's fully loaded and I can say it's pretty heavy but still comfortable enough (I think). In front of the bag is the poncho with a blanket rolled into it. The smaller bag on the right contains my tin can cooking set. Inside the backpack there's mostly extra clothing but also my Mora and my airgun aswell as other stuff such as a extra water bottle. But there simply wasn't any room for other important stuff like my winter jacket, won't need to wear it when I leave in may, but will have to take it with me.

Anyhow.. there it is.. the backpack that I will be taking with me on my journey into the wilderness.
It was a lot of hard work but 100% handmade and hand stitched/sewn.. thank god it's over :)

4 great debris bushcraft shelters

Here are 4 debris shelters that anyone can build, they are easy to build and easy to take down again and how long they will last depends on the amount of effort put into the building process.
No tarp? no poncho? or simply not enough room for a portable shelter? no problem with this list.

A-frame shelter
This is definately one of the easiest designs and I wrote about this shelter before. I can also say that it's my favourite type of shelter due to it's simplicity.

Double A-frame (viking) shelter
Somewhat the same as the A-frame shelter only with a double entry. downside is that two open entry make for more wind/cold inside the shelter, the big plus is that it has more space then the shelter above. I nicknamed this one the Viking shelter since it looks somewhat like old viking tents.

Debris Tipi (Teepee)
Most likely the most time consuming shelter and you probably don't want to be building a nice fire in the centre of this tipi. This is clearly a shelter build for a longterm stay. These cone shaped shelters also provide a lot of space.

The easiest one to build (but ofcourse you can make it as complex as you want). In my opinion this is not the type of shelter you should build in an area where it rains, storms or snows alot. Because this is just the "viking" shelter with half of it missing. Why this shelter is so populair with bushcrafters in the first place is beyond me.. In a warmer climate these will be great however to provide shade from the sun.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Diary 9 feb

Yesterday I tested my selfmade backpack for the very first time. I loaded it with items that I truly needed and that I'm planning to bring with me.
Clothing and my Crosman 2240 takes the most space, the 2240 also is the heaviest item in the bag.
Remember that this is a 40ltr something backpack so it's a miracle it all fits and holds.

Not everything fits in it but that's not a problem.. some larger items like my heavy military jacket fit inside my cycle bag.

In my last diary entry I wrote that I had ordered a new compact camera and well, it just came in and it seems to operate just fine. Since the last one probably was stolen I will be keeping this camera close to me at all times and I will use it for this blog and I will be taking it with me aswell on my journey to document my adventure for others. All in all, today was a good day.

Time for the Song of the day.. now for something completely different..

Tupac - Letter to the president

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Survival fishing with trash

We have a small fishing shop a f blocks from here and everytime I enter the shop I get a good old smile on my face from all that fishing gear.
Hooks in all shapes and sizes, softbaits and special lures, fishing line and all sorts of equipment.
Fishing is a real populair sport in my area so that shop is booming right now, however what the shopowner and his costumers don't know is that a lot of their stuff can be made for free... with trash...

People have been making hooks, lures and other equipment from trash for years and they work just as good as any expensive mass-manifactured equipment. And once again Youtube is filled with awesome tutorials and here are some of the best.


Soup can clips turned into fishing hooks

Paperclips turned into fishing hooks (and Rod guides)

Fishing Floats

Making a fishing float out of a soda straw, truly genius! The video also shows proof that it works

Fishing Lures

Making a fishing lure from a spoon.. Similair to the one I made

A lure from a soda can


PVC fishing pole tutorial

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Diary 6 feb

Yesterday I have ordered a new compact camera. It's a Fujifilm Finepix AX550.. 14 megapixel, cheap and easy on the batteries.. just what I needed. Then I can finally post some photo's of my recent DIY projects and tutorials.

What else has been happening?
Well it's snowing again.. It snows, It melts, It snows.. has been going on like this for weeks. I love the snow I just don't like the cold that comes with it.. I better get used to it however, I might be seeing much more of that in the coming years.

I also have a problem with my left eye.. it stings and it's all red.. but my eye is not swollen. I guess I accidently rubed something in my eye, maybe a little fly, maybe just dirt but maybe something poisonous since I work a lot with plants lately. It feels better then yesterday.

Well i'm off to play minecraft, take care ;)

Björk - Come to me

A quest for wild edibles

In theory a human can grow old by eating only fish or meat but hey from time to time you want to eat something else right? Well there is an abundance of wild food if you know where to look. A good place to start is in your own garden. Many weeds for example are completely edible and often they don't taste that bad either, some common wild edibles even have medicinal proporties.  I'm not going to post a list of all wild edibles, I could never list them all even if I would make a seperate blog about it. There are just way too many.  But I can point out a few wild edibles that are very common in most parts of the world. So here it goes.

Nr 1: The Dandelion
This is one of those weeds that is hated by almost every gardener but it is also one of the most common and usefull wild edibles. The entire plant is edible.. The leaves can be picked and put in a salad, young leaves taste best. You can dig up the roots, roast the on a fire and after crushing them it can be used as a coffee replacement. The yellow top can be picked and eaten directly which has a sweet taste. These also make for a great tea.

Nr 2: Cattail
This is one best plants to stumble upon if you're out in the wilderness, not only is it edible, the pollens at the top are great firemaking material. The parts the can be eaten are leaves that can be cooked and used as a salad. The roots are also edible cooked or raw.

Nr 3: Plantain
Another weed that can be found in gardens, parks, farmlands, well.. everywhere.. The leaves are edible both raw and boiled, and the seeds can be harvested and eaten as well. In addition, plantain is a great plant to know for treating minor wounds and insect bites. Simply chew up several leaves and apply to the wound, repeating as desired.

Nr 4: Stinging nettle
A very niticious plant that needs to be cooked or steamed for obvious reasons. The cooked leaves taste somewhat like spinach. Dried leaves make for a great tea. It turns out that people also used to make beer, coffee and flour from nettles. It also has medicinal uses, for example nettle tea purifies the blood.

Nr 5: Clovers
There are many types of clovers including the red and white clover. The leaves and young flower heads are edible cooked and raw and are great for salads and soups. Odd enough dried leaves seem to taste somewhat like vanilla

Nr 6: Grass
Didn't saw that one coming did you? But in fact all grasses (and there are a lot) are edible. Edible, in this case realy means that you can eat it and that it's healthy, it does not mean it will taste nice. But because it is edible and found anywhere it is one of the greatest survival foods there is. It can be a little rough on the stomac so it should better be cooked.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Diary 3 feb

At the moment it's early in the morning over here. Madame is working a nightshift and I have nothing to do so why not write in my diary.

I have said it before and I will say it again.. Time is moving fast.. two more months.
It is about time to pick a date as to when I will be leaving.

I will be leaving near the end of may after celebrating my birthday which is on the 20th of May. So I will be gone between 20 and 31 May. Because I leave in secret it is best to do this at night and during the weekends. Since there is only one weekend in that time period I can now finaly say when I will be leaving and that was about time!

I will be leaving society on: Saturday The 25th of May 2013 !
Most likely early in the morning before the sun starts to rise.

Time again for the song of the day...

Tatu - Ya Soshla S Uma
(All the things she said)


Hermit's website up and running

So I just wanted to let you guys know that I have build a website to go along with this blog.
It is still under construction but i'm working on it.

For those interested here is the link;