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10 Must Have Items You Need When Hiking With Your Dog

Whenever I am on a local hike, there is a good chance that you will find my dogs at my side. It has gotten to a point that when I am out of the trail without my dogs… Serious guilt sets in. I use the excuse that hiking with my dogs is imperative for their optimal health; But deep inside, I just want my boys with me on my adventures! Read on to learn the 10 must have items when hiking with your dog.

Hiking With Your Dog

My dogs add a lot to my hikes. At times, they give me purpose to be out there. They have an abundance of energy and tend to keep me hiking a little further than I would on my own. In addition, if I need to hit the trail for work purposes, I have 2 buddies that I can always count on to accompany me. Luckily, their schedules are usually clear. ?

Another benefit of bringing Bruno, (my Pit Bull) and Manchester, (my Jack Russell Terrier), is that they alert me to wildlife that I would otherwise be oblivious to. From a safety standpoint, they are an early warning system when a stranger is approaching our path. I’d be lying to you if I said that I didn’t feel added protection when my boys are part of my team.

There are certainly more positives than negatives when it comes to having my dogs out on the trail. But in all honesty… It’s not always fun and games.

For Starters:

  • They take my focus away when I am working.
  • I need to carry extra gear.
  • They scare the fish away with all of their water play.
  • They tend to ruin my video reviews & briefings with their random barks. ?

Having my dogs with me adds much more responsibility to the outing. Over the years of hiking with my furry kids, covering countless miles, there are a few items that I found that make the mission much more enjoyable. At times, I have saddlebags for my dogs so that we can share the extra weight. But in warmer weather, I opt for carrying the gear myself ensuring greater safety for my boys.

I’d like to share with you 10 of the items that I bring along when I am hiking with my dogs. I approach their gear the same way that I do my own. The weight and multi-purpose applications of their equipment, certainly plays a role in my decision making.

So Let’s Get Started…

1. Ripstop Blanket:

Me and my dogs hike on varied terrain when we hit the trails. Sometimes it’s sandy, other times it’s rocky and everything else in between. On extended rest breaks, I lay out the blanket in order to give them a bit more comfort. No… they aren’t being fancy, they are getting as much R&R as possible so that they could keep up on the longer humps.

10 Must Have Items You Need When Hiking With Your Dog blanket

By adding this barrier it also keeps the nasty ticks, fleas and ants from annoying my dogs. Even with the best insect repellant, these critters still tend to bother the shit out of my dogs… so any preventive measure is helpful.

The blanket can also serve varied purposes for my dogs. It can be used to provide shade from the hot sun. It can also be used as a rain fly for those unexpected downpours. Due to the construction of the blanket, it can also provide much needed warmth for my dogs in certain scenarios.

2. Leash & Harness:

Keeping my dogs on a leash is not only the law where I live… but it is also the right thing to do. Not only will it be more comfortable for other people that are sharing the trail with us but it is also the safest measure for my dogs. With a leash I always know where my dogs are. There are many trigger-happy morons in the world. If they see a Pit Bull coming at them for whatever reason… It may not bode well for my boy Bruno.

10 Must Have Items You Need When Hiking With Your Dog Leash

I keep the leash affixed to their standard collar while hiking. But when we take our extended breaks, I put a harness on my dogs to give their necks a break. Between me accidentally pulling on them for many miles and their own natural movements, their collars can cause irritation. I replace their collars with harnesses and fasten their leashes to them. This gives their necks a much needed break from their collars.

3. Paracord:

I tend to have a decent amount of cordage with me whether solo or with my dogs. The versatility of paracord goes without say. But when it comes to my dogs, they need to be leashed as we previously discussed. When moving on the trail, a standard leash will suffice. But when I take an extended break to work or for chow… I want to extend that short leash to give my dogs more roaming room.

10 Must Have Items You Need When Hiking With Your Dog paracord

Trees are usually abundant when I’m out in the field. I tie an extended leader made of paracord, to the existing leash; The other end gets fastened to a tree. This allows my dogs much more leeway so that they can do their thing. In return, since they are entertained, I can focus on the task at hand without having to tend to my dogs every few minutes.

4. Water Purifier:

When I am hiking by myself, I have a personal water purifier in my pack. When my dogs are with me, I opt for a water purifier that can provide for all of us. Water is something that I address before we ever get on the trail. However, my dogs tend to drain every drop of water that I bring well before our mission is complete. I can either bring a 5 gallon container with me or a good water purifier; I choose the latter. ?

10 Must Have Items You Need When Hiking With Your Dog water purifier

There are plenty of water sources around most of the routes that I chose when I am with my pets. Unfortunately, those sources aren’t always operable when we get to them. Having a water purifier that can get our water potable quickly is crucial. Be responsible for you but especially for your pets. They have no choice but to rely on your preparedness.

5. LED Collars:

An LED collar is a newer addition to my gear. I had a few sent to me to review a little over a year ago. I put the LED collars through my review process and found them to be very useful. There are plenty of times that we are on the trail as the sun begins to set. Having an LED collar, that allows me to keep track of my dogs, makes my life much easier.

10 Must Have Items You Need When Hiking With Your Dog led collar

In overnight scenarios, the convenience of an LED dog collar multiplies. Instead of turning my flashlight on every few minutes, and/or calling my dogs’ names… I can basically use my peripheral vision and know the exact position of my dogs. These collars attach to the molle webbing on the outside of my pack and barely add any weight. They are not only good for the safety of my dogs but they also add peace of mind to my experience while I’m in the field.

6. Dog Bowl:

Whether I’m using their bowls for water or for their chow, a quality water bowl is a must. I found that collapsible bowls work the best for me. They are durable, BPA-free, inexpensive and collapse to a very thin profile. I wouldn’t use them for home use but they are extremely convenient at basecamp or when on the trail.

10 Must Have Items You Need When Hiking With Your Dog bowls

Having a good bowl also extends the life of the food and water that I have with me. I have seen people give water to their dogs out of a standard bottle; spilling half of it with each gulp. If you have continual access to water, this isn’t an issue besides the waste… Of course. But when you are on the trail, you need to conserve both food and water.

Give them small portions of both water and food in the bowl. Keep refilling the bowl until they are satisfied. This will keep the water loss at a minimum and their food can remain packed, fresh and slobber free.

7. Dog Food & Snacks:

This one may seem obvious but many people plan to be back home before their dog’s chow time. Keep in mind that just like us, our dogs are burning lots of extra calories on these longer hikes. We need to keep their energy up and supplemental snacks seem to do the job quite well for me.

10 Must Have Items You Need When Hiking With Your Dog snacks

I bring varied treats from dog bars to regular dry food… And even some homemade dog cookies that are packed with nutrition. Homemade treats always contain less garbage than the store bought snacks because we control the ingredients.

Stick with what you generally reward or feed your dog on a regular basis. The trail is not a good place to experiment with new food. Diarrhea and vomiting is something that you want to avoid at all costs. Dehydration is one thing to deal with while at home but on the trail, things can get bad very quickly.

8. Shemagh:

A bandana or shemagh is something that I generally keep with me in my go bag. It has countless applications and is easy to pack. When it comes to my dogs, I find that placing a water soaked shemagh around their necks, keeps them comfortable, especially in the warmer months.

10 Must Have Items You Need When Hiking With Your Dog shemagh

When I’m confident that I have ample water for our hike, I use the water that I have with me to douse the shemagh. If water conservation is a concern, I use water from a stream, lake or pond to fulfill the task. The pups seem to appreciate it and when they’re good… I’m Good!

9. D-Ring Or Carabiner:

I keep a quality D-ring clipped to my backpack. It’s a real deal D-ring used for mountaineering. The cheap smaller ones, that seem to be attached to everything these days, will not serve my intended purpose.

10 Must Have Items You Need When Hiking With Your Dog d-ring

I attach my D-ring to the shoulder strap on my rucksack. My ruck contains molle webbing on the shoulder straps, so it’s a simple task. I place the handle of the dog leash in the D-ring and fasten the ring. This allows me to operate hands-free while performing a certain task or even for the duration of the hike.

Keep in mind that this method is not for everyone. The size and discipline of both you and your dog needs to be addressed. Your strength and fitness level also comes into play. Let’s not forget that your gear, especially your backpack, needs to be able to accommodate all of the strain that will be put on it.

10. Insect Repellent:

Insects can ruin the party when you are on the trail. They are extremely annoying to us but we can easily swat them away. When it comes to our dogs, they don’t have that luxury. Besides the obvious annoyance, critters can wreak havoc on your dog’s nervous system. They carry nasty diseases that can easily be transmitted to your dog.

10 Must Have Items You Need When Hiking With Your Dog insect repellant

I carry a concoction that I make myself out of 3 simple ingredients. It has served both me and my dogs very well for the past 7 years. When it comes to any chemicals that I put on me or my dogs, I want them to be as clean and non-toxic as possible. Be careful in what you apply to yourself and even more importantly, what chemicals that you introduce to your dog’s nervous system.

Bottom Line:

I have used most of the items that I mentioned in this articles for quite a few years. They have served me and my dogs quite well. I shared this list with you in hopes that you can use these ideas to make life, for both you and your dogs, more comfortable while you are on the trail.

There is never a one-size-fits-all so tweak the list to what will assimilate best for you and your dog. In an emergency situation, what you practice with your dogs while on the trail, may be what will save your life. Take nothing for granted and always strive to be as prepared as you can be for both you and your dogs.

Our dogs love us unconditionally… Do whatever you can to keep them happy and comfortable for the very short timespan that we are graced with their presence.

Up Next: 6 Benefits Of Using Vinegar In Your Survival Garden

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Homemade Weapons You Can DIY To Awaken Your Inner Caveman

Learn to make your own homemade weapons so you’ll have a fighting chance in a survival situation where all you have is nature.

 [You Get One FREE] Weird Little Knife Drives TSA Crazy!

How to Make Homemade Weapons

Why Should You Learn to Make Homemade Weapons?

Let’s say you got lost in the wild, and you somehow forgot or lost your Cold Steel Leatherneck Tanto 39LSFT (or whichever is the best survival knife for you). What do you do?

While your situation is most likely not quite as bad as Tom Hanks had it in Castaway, let’s face it. The only way you’re gonna get out of this situation in good shape is to let out your inner caveman.

Let me explain. Our very primitive ancestors lived in a time when every day was a survival situation. Any tools or weapons they needed had to be made from scratch.

So, should you be unlucky enough to have only the shirt on your back while you’re lost in the wilderness, you’ll have to follow suit. Let the training of your inner caveman begin.

Today’s lesson: how to make DIY weapons in the wild with only the resources nature provided you.

How to Make a Knife | Homemade Weapons

Having a knife, any kind of knife is probably one of the best things to happen should you suddenly find yourself in a survival situation. You can use it to help you find food, build a shelter, and defend yourself against wild animals.

So it’s highly fortunate nature is waiting like a momma at a craft table with lots of materials you can use to create one.

1. Stone Knives

Bone, shell, bamboo, wood, or even an old aluminum beer can may work to perform the puncturing function of a blade. You know you’ve seen these a million times when you’re out hiking.

They’re easy to crack or break or shape into a fairly sharp point which will do in a pinch. Unfortunately, you’re not going to be able to use a chicken bone or an expertly-shaped aluminum can point to skin, chop, baton, or any of the other necessary functions of a survival knife.

This is where the stone comes into play. I’ll start by saying making a knife out of stone isn’t easy, but it can be done.

You’ll need three things: a core rock, a hammerstone, and a pressure flaker. Remember, you’re going to be smashing these together in true caveman fashion.

So, having stones you can reasonably grip in each hand is going to make your life a lot easier. Although, it’s definitely an option to stand poised over one rock smashing down on it.

You, with a two-hand grip, pounding until you’ve chipped away at it a bit. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

2. The Core Rock

rock formation background | Homemade Weapons You Can DIY To Awaken Your Inner Caveman | homemade weapons | deadliest ancient weapons

The core rock is what you’ll be making into a blade. Find any large stone, preferably made from obsidian, slate, chert, or flint with a relatively flat side.

In case you weren’t a rock collector in any of your previous lives, here’s another way to decide if a rock meets the requirements for good knife-making material. Tap or click a rock together with another rock and listen for a ringing sound (like glass).

The more rock sounds like glass, the better it is as a material for your core rock. If you can, choose a rock which is already a bit sharp to reduce the amount of time you’ll need to shape it.

3. The Hammerstone

The hammerstone is a medium-sized, spherical rock, preferably made of granite. It will be used to smash, chisel, chip and shape the core rock.

You’ll be using it to chip off pieces of the core stone and to narrow the edges to a blade shape.

RELATED: How To Keep Your Edge | Knife Sharpener

4. The Pressure Flaker

The pressure flaker, or flaking tool, is a rock with a sharp point to help you refine the blade’s edges. You’ll use your flaking tool after you’ve thinned the edges of the stone with the hammer stone to make the “blade” sharper.

When you start making your knife, you’ll want to be sure to wet the core stone to shorten the time it takes to shape it into a blade. Begin by striking glancing blows near the edge of the core rock with the hammerstone.

Chip away at the core rock until you get the general shape of a blade. Then, use the flaking tool to refine the edges you need to sharpen.

You can also use a stone with a rough surface such as a sandstone to sharpen the edge. Use some rope, cloth, or leather to lash the base and create a handle.

If you are having troubling shaping the rock into a knife, you can opt to create stone blades instead. Check out the videos below to learn how:

Part One:

Part Two:

How to Make a Spear | Homemade Weapons

south african zulu spear | Homemade Weapons You Can DIY To Awaken Your Inner Caveman | homemade weapons | deadliest ancient weapons

We’ve talked about how to make a spear using your best survival knife in a previous article. The same principle applies here.

Even without your Cold Steel Leatherneck Tanto 39LSFT or whichever survival knife you normally bring with you, you can still make a spear using your newly made stone knife. To make a spear, you’ll need to find a five-foot-long stick tough enough to endure repeated short or long-distance throws.

  1. First, pick the end of the stick which has a more rounded tip and use your stone knife to start shaving to create a spear. Once you’re done, be sure to heat the spear over some hot coals to make your spear sharper.
  2. As an alternative, you can also make a spear by tying your knife onto a stick. Find a stick which is about an inch wide.
  3. Measure about 2 inches from one end of the stick. Mark the point, then split the stick into two until you reach the 2-inch mark, creating a sort of Y shape.
  4. This will create a space where you can stick your stone knife before you lash it on with some twine, cord, or rope. To lock the blade in place, put some moss or lichen in the remaining space.
  5. If you haven’t had time to fashion your knife out of stone yet, you can also use broken pieces of shell or glass or splintered bamboo or bone and secure it to the end of your stick.
  6. If you find a way to split your stick without a knife, you can insert the splintered bone or bamboo into the wedge and tie it off like you would when turning a knife into a spear.

How to Make a Weighted Club | Homemade Weapons

While sharp pointy tools are all well and good, you can never go wrong with a blunt homemade weapon. You can use it for hammering or bludgeoning something such as a weighted club.

The weighted club could be one of the deadliest ancient weapons. To make one, you’ll need the following: a piece of wood around 14-16 inches, a medium-sized rock, and some rope.

  1. Once you have all the materials, you’ll need to wrap some lashing 6-8 inches from the end of the stick.
  2. Split the same end until you reach the lashing in order to create a V-shaped notch. The rock you picked out should be shorter than the length of the split.
  3. Insert the stone then lash it securely (above, below, and across the stone). The lashing on the stick above the stone clamps both sides of the split together providing the first point of security, so it’s especially important to create a good, tight lashing above the stone.
  4. You’ll want to make sure you bind the split ends securely so the stone won’t fall off whenever you use it to hammer or pound on something.

This video from Wannabe Bushcrafter will show you how to make a bamboo knife:

Now, hopefully, you never find yourself in a situation where making homemade weapons is going to be a necessity for survival. But, if you do find yourself in such a quagmire, this little bit of information and inner caveman training may be what saves your life.

Which of these homemade weapons do you want to make? Tell us your progress in the comments section below!

Up Next:

Go to our Survival Life Store to shop some of our favorites self-defense tools and gear!

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***Disclaimer: The contents of this article are for informational purposes only. Please read our full disclaimer.***

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on April 11, 2014, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.

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5 Home Remedies For Chigger Bites

Know these home remedies for chigger bites, or better yet, avoid the bug's bites in the first place with helpful tips included here!

RELATED: Top Ways to Deal with Insects [Especially Mosquitos]

In this article:

  1. What Is a Chigger, Exactly?
  2. Where Do Chiggers Live?
  3. Identifying Chiggers Bites
  4. Home Remedies for Chigger Bites
  5. Tips to Avoid Chigger Bites and Chigger Bites Infection

Home Remedies For Chigger Bites

What Is a Chigger, Exactly?

Chiggers are members of the arachnid family. They are extremely tiny, and my guess is you won’t even see them as they jump from the tall grass onto your skin and/or clothing.

Adult chiggers are about 1/60 of an inch and have eight legs. The larvae are red, wingless, six-legged creatures which measure less than 1/150 of an inch.

Because of their red color, you might be able to spot the larvae when they cluster together, especially on white clothing.

What Is the Arachnid Family? It is a large group or class of invertebrate animals where the spiders and scorpions belong.

Where Do Chiggers Live?

Chiggers reside in tall weeds and grass, berry patches, and wooded areas. They could be in your backyard, by the lake, or your favorite hiking trail.

They are most active in summer and fall afternoons – the warmest part of the day.

Identifying Chiggers Bites

Only the larvae bite humans and they tend to choose warm, moist areas of the body.

Chiggers also have claws which help them grab onto your skin. The chigger then attaches its mouth to the skin and injects saliva.

The saliva contains an enzyme which breaks skin cells down to liquid form. Your body responds by hardening skin cells around the saliva, creating a tube (cyclostome) through which the chigger sucks the dissolved skin cells.

Chiggers can stay attached and feeding for several days before falling off.

When the chigger falls off, you are left with reddish bumps. You may notice a bright red dot in the center—this is a remnant of the tube your skin formed in response to the chigger's saliva.

The bumps may look like welts, blisters, pimples, or hives. Bites generally appear in groups and get larger for several days to a week.

While many insects bite exposed skin which is easy to get to, chiggers like to bite in folds of skin as well as places where clothing fits tightly on the skin. Most chigger bites occur around the ankles, waist, armpits, crotch, or behind the knees.

Home Remedies for Chigger Bites

Just remember, no matter what, DO NOT SCRATCH THE BITES! I know, easier said than done. But, breaking the skin on a chigger bite can lead to infection.

Here are 5 home remedies to help with the itching and swelling.

RELATED: Spider Bite? Here’s How To Treat It

1. Vicks Vapor Rub

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Vicks Vapor Rub can put an end to itchy chigger bites immediately and will even reduce the risk of blisters. It’s the cooling menthol in it which relieves itching by affecting itch receptors in the skin.

Steps:

  • Take a hot shower (use antibacterial soap.) Pat dry your skin with a soft towel.
  • Take a small amount of the vapor rub and add some table salt to it.
  • Mix well and apply to the affected area.
  • Repeat if the swelling continues (otherwise, there is no need to repeat the process)

2. Cold Compress

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A cold compress can help reduce the itching associated with chigger bites. Its numbing effect helps reduce the sensation of itchiness.

Steps:

  • Wrap some ice cubes in a thin cloth.
  • Apply the compress to the bites for 10 minutes. Repeat if needed to relieve itching.

3. Baking Soda

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Baking soda is another effective remedy to reduce rashes as well as itchiness. It acts as a natural acid neutralizer which helps relieve itching and reduces the risk of infection.

Steps:

  • Add 1 cup of baking soda to a bathtub filled with cool water.
  • Stir well and soak in this water for 15 minutes and pat your skin with a soft towel. (Do this once daily)

Another remedy using baking soda:

  • Prepare a thin paste of 2 teaspoons of baking soda and a little water.
  • Apply the paste on the affected areas and leave it on for about 10 minutes.
  • Rinse it off with cool water.

Note: Do not use this remedy more than once or twice a day. Never use baking soda on broken skin or open wounds.

4. Oatmeal

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Oatmeal contains anti-irritating, anti-inflammatory and soothing properties providing instant relief from itching–one of the common symptoms of chigger bites. It is recommended to use colloidal oatmeal, meaning oats which are ground into an extremely fine powder.

(You can accomplish this yourself by grinding regular oats in a sealed Ziploc bag, using the backside of a spoon to crush the oatmeal.)

Steps:

  • Add 1 cup of colloidal oatmeal to a bathtub filled with warm water
  • Stir thoroughly
  • Soak in this mixture for at least 15-20 minutes
  • Repeat 2-3 times a day

5. Olive Oil

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Olive oil can also be used to get relief from the irritation and inflammation. It is rich in vitamin E and antioxidants which reduce itching and facilitate healing.

Steps:

  • After rinsing the affected area with water, apply olive oil to the chigger bite.
  • Reapply several times a day.

Another option using olive oil:

  • Mix a few drops of tea tree oil in 1 tablespoon of olive oil and apply on the affected area.
  • Repeat a few times a day.

Tips to Avoid Chigger Bites and Chigger Bites Infection

As summer and fall are prime time for chigger bites, it is best to take the following precautions:

  1. When hiking, stay in the center of the trail and avoid brushing up against vegetation.
  2. Wear long sleeves and long pants when going into the woods.
  3. Apply mosquito repellent on your hands, feet, and exposed skin on your arms before going outside.
  4. Shower immediately after being outdoors and use antibacterial soap.
  5. Wash your clothes in hot water.
  6. Resist the urge to scratch because breaking the skin on chigger bites can lead to a possible infection.

This video from Online Pest Control will show you tips to avoid chiggers and ways to get rid of chiggers:

Chigger bites much like other insect bites aren't only discomforting, they can be dangerous too. Many of these insects including chiggers carry diseases in some cases.

The best way to deal with these bugs is to avoid them or control them with our tips here. But, if you're so unlucky, you also now know the best home remedies to chigger bites!

Have you had to deal with chigger bites before? Tell us how, including more useful tips which worked for you in the comments section below!

Up Next:

Go to our Survival Life Store to shop some of our favorites self-defense tools and gear!

Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and Tumblr!

***Disclaimer: The contents of this article are for informational purposes only. Please read our full disclaimer.***

Home Remedies For Chigger Bites | https://survivallife.com/5-home-remedies-for-chigger-bites/

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on June 28, 2016, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.

This Article Was First Found at survivallife.com Read The Original Article Here

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9 Good Reasons To Carry A “Survival Stick”

Arm yourself with a survival stick, get savvy with it, but first, find out why as you read on!

RELATED: Deadly Parasols | Umbrella As A Self-Defense Weapon

In this article:

  1. Survival Hiking Stick
  2. Survival Stick for Support
  3. Fetching/Reaching Things
  4. Walking Staff Weapon for Self-Defense
  5. Balance
  6. Gauging Depth
  7. Carrying Gear and Supplies
  8. Club
  9. Fishing Rod

Survival Stick: An Underrated Multipurpose Tool?

The Survival Stick in History

A walking stick or a survival cane were popular in the 17th and 18th centuries as a decorative show of power and a defensive replacement for a sword. Yet, the truth is our ancestors have been using them for thousands of years, and for good reason…

…They work! Even the animal kingdom is smart enough to know just how useful these are:

(It may be hard to see, but this gorilla is holding a walking stick to gauge the depth of the water as she sloshes along)

A walking stick is not a new or revolutionary idea. In fact, the use of a walking stick predates history and its use continued on for generations including this present time.

Yet, it is one which is more often than not overlooked. When most people think of a walking stick, it is usually paired with a top hat or seen as a crutch for someone with a walking disability.

Far too few people even realize how important a walking stick can be, especially to someone in the outdoors. We will dig a little deeper into the many uses of a survival stick and maybe safely say, it could be the first multi-purpose survival tool.

Practical and Survival Uses for a Survival Stick

Walking sticks are also known as trekking poles, pilgrim's staffs, hiking poles and hiking staff have quite a few different uses:

1. Survival Hiking Stick

Hold the survival stick in front of you and you can use it to clear your way by parting brushes and branches or leaves and thick tall grasses. You can also use it to clear spiderwebs, especially if you're not too fond of spiders.

Other insects, animals, poisonous plants, and even animal dung can get in the way. Use a survival stick to inspect or poke at those things if you are unsure, and never ever your hands or your feet.

2. Survival Stick for Support

Hiker in Caucasus mountains is crossing mountain river | Good Reasons To Carry A "Survival Stick" | hiking staff
Making your way through an uneven terrain will be more manageable with a walking stick for support. Whether you're going up or down, use the walking stick to either slow you down or hold you up.

You can use your walking stick like breaks to keep you from speeding down or use it to latch on to a rock or crevice when you're climbing up. Besides for yourself, you can also use your multipurpose stick as a support for your tarp emergency shelter.

3. Fetching/Reaching Things

It happens–a supply or gear falling on water, mud, puddle or in an area you dare not walk into. You can fetch or reach for those items with a stick.

It also happens where you need an item over a physical barrier and only a stick can fetch the item for you. You can also reach for fruits, nest, or other food sources up a tree or high structure with a stick.

RELATED: Unusual Weapons From Around The World And How To Use Them

4. Walking Staff Weapon for Self-Defense

To use a survival stick as a weapon, make sure it's a sturdy stick with a finished look and not just any stick you found along the way. You can use it to defend yourself from an attacker whether it's human or animals.

I would suggest to train yourself in some form of martial arts using a stick like a baton as a weapon to have a better handle at it.

You can also fashion a spear with your stick by tying a survival knife on one end. Don't throw this spear though or you risk damaging or losing your knife and stick.

Hold on to your homemade spear and only use it to thrust at your target.

5. Balance

Hiker is crossing the river in Sweden | Hiker in Caucasus mountain | Good Reasons To Carry A "Survival Stick" | survival hiking stickWhen you're crossing a log bridge over a stream or you're going through the stream itself or other bodies of water, a walking stick can help you balance so you don't fall over. If you're walking through a muddy or rocky waterbed, a walking stick will help you up.

If you're up for it and if the body of water isn't too wide across, you can also use a long stick like a pole vault to cross over so you don't get yourself wet.

6. Gauging Depth

Relative to crossing bodies of water, a survival stick is handy in identifying dips beneath the waters which could cause you to stumble. You can also use the stick to identify where it's safe to take the next step.

You can also use this simple trick with the stick when you're traveling in deep snow, marshland, and even the dessert.

7. Carrying Gear and Supplies

Use your survival stick to help you carry gear and supplies. Pack your supplies with a shemagh, tie it tight to one end of your stick then place the stick over your shoulders in hobo fashion.

You can also carry more supplies with your survival stick. Even today, a carrying pole is used by indigenous people all over the world to carry heavy supplies you never thought possible.

Hang bags of supplies or jars of water on either side of the pole or stick, putting a stopper like a notch or tie on both ends so they don't fall off. Place the center of the stick over your shoulders and balance your load to your destination.

8. Club

Man carrying blue backpack | Good Reasons To Carry A "Survival Stick" | walking staff weapon
Use your survival stick like a club to knock obstacle down. A pillar of rocks or other objects may be on your way and a sturdy stick can help you safely knock those.

If you are in a building with glass doors or windows or inside a car, you can break the glass with a stick. Make to knock over pieces around your entrance or exit with the stick, too.

9. Fishing Rod

You only need to bring a fishing kit and your survival stick will make a good fishing rod. Tie a line on one end of your walking stick and fish away.

A DIY fishing pole is actually effective and many a fish has been caught this way.

As you guys and gals already know, I am a stickler for carrying things only if they have multiple uses. This guy managed to fit almost an entire survival kit into a walking stick he built from scratch, for under $20.00.

Check out this video from SOS 2054 I found, and find out for yourself, too:

A humble walking stick will indeed surprise you with what it can do for your defense, convenience, safety, and survival. Since you know now the practical and survival uses of this primitive multi-purpose tool, it won't surprise me if it lands a top spot on your list of survival tools for camping, hiking, or SHTF.

What other uses can you think of for carrying a “survival stick”? Let us know in the comments section below!

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**Disclaimer: The contents of this article are for informational purposes only. Please read our full disclaimer.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on October 11, 2013, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.

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