3,363 forum posts
I've been doing a lot of thinking lately, and there's something that just keeps bugging me.
It seems that everywhere I look someone, some website, or some organization is offering to teach newbies "survival skills" which is all good and well except that I get the distinct impression that many new people may not realize that "survival skills" are only a subset of a much broader subject and are only part of the skills they need to develop - IMO.
I think skills could be broke down into at least three major categories:
1. Planning & packing
2. Wilderness skills - for everyday safety & self reliance
3. Survival skills - for emergencies
Here's where I'm going with this - are you really doing someone justice if you teach them how to splint a broken leg (survival skill) but they don't know not to pitch a tent under a big rotten limb (wilderness skill)?
I realize that some of this overlaps - e.g. first aid skills could be in all three categories I named. I also know that a lot of "survival courses" also teach everyday wilderness skills but it bothers me that the two get conflated.
It just seems to me that the word 'Survival' gets tossed around a lot, it's a major buzz word and an attention getter, not to mention being a big money maker.
Some people just want to be Mr. or Mrs. Survival and then they get out there and realize there's a lot of every day stuff they don't know. They make mistakes and end up with hypothermia - but it's okay because they know how to rub two sticks together to make fire (thanks survival course!).
Doesn't it do a disservice if someone heads out into the backcountry knowing what to do in case of an emergency, but not how to avoid one?
What do you guys think?