Hot Outdoor Safety How-Tos

How To: Construct a shelter out of tarp, string, and trees

If you ever find yourself stranded in the woods, then making a shelter is one of your biggest priorities. ITS Tactical created this detailed and approachable video on how to rig a shelter in woods out of only a tarp, a ball of heavy-duty string, and four metal tent-posts, three items that anyone, wilderness inclined or not, should keep in their car at all times. It goes over the necessary knots in great detail, and should make it unnecessary for any of us to sleep unsheltered outdoors again.

How To: Read a paper map

Have you ever found yourself lost in the Appalachian Mountains, or stranded in the Mojave Desert? Maybe it was because you couldn't read a map… a real map… a real hands-on, folding paper map. Reading a map is an important skill that may be lost in the internet and GPS era, but it' s a skill that everyone should have.

How To: Make a sleeping bag from a wool blanket

This video is about making a mummy type sleeping bag or an over bag for a hammock with a woolen blanket. The first task is to make coat rings and hooks. Take a piece of flexible wire and bend it into a ring of diameter 1 3/4 inch or 2 inches with a overlap of about 1 1/2 inches make 6 or 7 rings. Now take a small straight wire and make a hook of 1 or 1 1/2 inch, make the tips of the wire pointed so that it can penetrate. Overlap the edges of the blanket by 2to3 inches. Fix the rings with the ...

How To: Recognize and avoid poison ivy

Life is not always a walk in the woods, but when it is, make sure you don’t step in the poison ivy. Leaves of three, don't touch me or Leaves of three, let it be is a pretty good rule of thumb as poison ivy comes in many colors and varieties. This video nature safety tutorial shows how to look out for and prevent the uncomfortable burning that results from any contact with poison ivy.

How To: Make a basic survival shelter from a Mylar blanket

In this video tutorial, viewers learn how to make a basic survival shelter using an emergency blanket. The materials required for this shelter are: an emergency blanket, paracord and duct tape. This is a basic shelter that would be great for certain conditions. This setup would be ideal for the following conditions: light to medium rain, low wind, and above freezing temps. This video is very descriptive and clearly explains all the instructions. This video will benefit those viewers who are c...

How To: Tie an Arab-style shemagh two different ways

A shemagh, or a keffiyeh, is a traditiona Arab headdress that's worn by Arab men. Made from a square scarf, it protects their heads and face from desert wind and sun. It's also multifunctional - warm at night and lightweight during the day. These scarves have even become adopted by the U.S. Cavalry to protect themselves during long treks outdoors.

How To: Handle food safely when camping

Memorial Day signifies the unofficial kickoff for outdoor activities like camping. Camping can either be a flurry of fun and adventure, or a miserable few days of getting sick in the bushes and being dehydrated. Every summer, thousands of people set out on these camping adventures, and every summer, many become stricken with food borne illnesses or a parasitic infection. Watch this how to video to keep this from happening to you.

How To: Use a ladder safely at work

Ladder Safety is a video tutorial designed to highlight the important safety procedures associated with ladder use on construction sites. The video uses classic B&W comedic film footage and computer graphic simulations to illustrate safe ladder techniques. Learn how to use a ladder safely while on the job or at home by watching this instructional video.

How To: Survive a silver back gorilla encounter

Gorillas are 400 lbs and 6 feet tall. They are the largest primates and the silver back, the dominant male is known to become aggressive if confronted. It begins with chest thumping and then a charge. If it charges you should crouch down. Don't run or chest thump.Your body language communicates that you are not aggressing the animal. Survive a silver back gorilla encounter.

How To: Tell directions without a compass

No compass or map? No problem. Figure your way out of the wilderness just by looking around you. You will need a stick, two rocks, and the ability to find constellations. Learn how to tell directions when lost without a map or compass by watching this video nature safety tutorial.

How To: Weather a cold and snowy winter storm when stranded outdoors

It's wintertime, and there is a slight possibility that you could find yourself stranded in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by nothing but snow, ice and cold weather. Your survival instincts kick in, but they're not good enough, except… you watched this video and survived thanks to all the great winter survival tips. If you ever anticipate (or don't anticipate) being caught outdoors in a winter storm, keeps these tips in mind.

How To: Make a fish hook from a bush

The video is about making a fish hook for the winter bushcraft national winter tutorial. The first step is to take a small stick and cut it so as to make it thin. Then an angle is cut at one end of the piece. The angle cut can be according to the maker's wish. Then cut out the part for catching. This small piece of stick is the hook. Take a piece of tree brush and wrap it around the hook. Wind it through the top and then the bottom of the hook until the hook is completely wrapped.

How To: Make natural rope from Douglas Iris leaves

This video demonstrates how to make natural fiber rope using Douglas iris, a plant which is found along the Pacific coast from Santa Barbara from to Oregon. Before beginning, you should know that Douglas iris is poisonous when eaten, but it should be safe when you are handling it. The plant blooms every spring and dies every winter and has a brighter green color on top and a duller green towards the stalk, with a dark purple tint near the roots. You should collect plants which have died from ...

How To: Survive spiders, snakes, & scorpions

Watch Ray Mears from the BBC explore the most dangerous threats in the desert--spiders, snakes, and scorpions--with a desert ranger. Learn how to avoid black widows by observing an area before you sit down! Do not "mess with any animals you know nothing about." If stung, stay calm.

How To: Drive off road and get un-stuck

Learn how to stay in one piece while driving off the road. Ray Mears from the BBC shares his top tips on driving on the sand. With patience, concentration, and the ability to keep your thumbs out of the wheel, you can learn how to float across the top of the sand before getting stuck! (Getting stuck is inevitable, he says!) This video is helpful in teaching tricks for how to get un-stuck.

How To: Solo camp in the Brazilian Bush with minimal equipment

Solo camping is a scary and exciting prospect. Alone in the woods at night, no one can hear you scream. But for those who crave solitude and love the wilderness, there can be no greater thrill, no greater connection to the primitive part of yourself. In this nine-part video, we learn all kinds of useful survival and camping skills by watching our host Colhane experience a three-day solo camping trip in the Brazlilian bush. You will learn how to cook, how to make fire, how to prepare a campsit...

How To: Survive a snake bite

Check out this instructional safety video to learn how survive a snake bite. Snakes are not uncommon in the continental United States. There is no region in the country where you'll be completely free from a venomous bite. When a snake bites out of hunger, it releases venom through glades in its teeth. But when a person disturbs a poisonous snake, it will attack with a dry bite, in which venom is not released. Watch this tutorial to learn all about surviving a snake bite. Survive a snake bite.

How To: Survive a hiking trip in the woods

Out for a leisurely hike in the woods? Well, don't leave home without a few simple supplies or you could be facing a survival situation out-of-doors. Make sure to take supplies along with you, like a compass, but make sure you know how to use it. Watch this video outdoor safety video and learn how to survive a hiking trip in the woods.

How To: Walk safely around forklifts and at construction sites

This video tutorial, in dramatic style, puts you into the driver's seat and shows you how difficult it is for the lift truck operators to see pedestrians. The video then outlines simple ways pedestrians can help lift truck drivers see them - and avoid a serious or fatal accident. Learn how to walk safely around a construction site, especially around fork lifts, by watching this instructional video.

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