Living in the wilderness is a great adventure but it can be a challenging experience for those who are not prepared. The allure of the wilderness is undeniably magical, but it is important to remember that living in the wild requires basic survival skills. In this guide, we will share tips and tricks on how to live in the wilderness, including everything from finding shelter, preparing a food source, and staying safe.

Before setting off on this adventure, it is important to pack the essentials. This includes a sturdy backpack, tent, sleeping bag, warm clothing, food and water supplies, and a map and compass. Remember, living in the wilderness is a vastly different experience than camping in a state park, as you will be far away from civilization and its conveniences.

Finding Shelter

The first and most important thing to consider when living in the wilderness is finding shelter. Nature can be unpredictable, and the weather can change rapidly, so it is essential to have a proper shelter where you can stay safe and dry. Depending on your environment, there are different types of shelters you can construct.

One of the simplest shelters to build is a lean-to structure. First, you will need to gather long branches and tie them to a sturdy tree trunk. Lean smaller branches against the vertical branches, until the roof is entirely covered. If needed, place a tarp or other waterproof material on top of the shelter to keep the interior dry.

Another shelter is a debris hut. A debris hut is constructed by gathering large branches, sticks, and leaves, and piling them up against a large log. Once the pile is generous, burrow inside and pull more branches to the top to create a roof. Make sure to keep the opening small to keep the heat in.

Preparing a Food Source

Food is essential for survival, but it can be challenging to find in the wilderness. One of the most important considerations is to have a water source nearby. Water can be sourced from rivers, streams, or lakes, and it is important to purify it before drinking it. One way of purifying water is by boiling it. If water is not readily available, you may need to melt snow or ice to create a water source.

Once you have water, it’s time to think about food. One of the simplest ways to procure food is by fishing. If you have a fishing line and bait, you can catch fish from nearby water sources. Another option is to hunt for small animals or birds. This requires proper hunting gear, skill, and knowledge of the local wildlife. You can also look for edible plants, berries, and nuts.

Staying Safe

Living in the wilderness can be dangerous particularly if you are not prepared. The first rule of wilderness survival is to remain calm and to avoid panicking. Always carry a first aid kit, and know basic first aid skills. Understanding how to administer CPR, clean and dress wounds, and how to treat emergency medical situations will be lifesaving in the wilderness.

Another key aspect of staying safe in the wilderness is understanding how to navigate. A compass and a map are your best friends. Knowing how to read a map and using your compass properly will help you navigate from place to place. Pay attention to the landmarks that surround the area and study them in case you need to backtrack.

It’s also essential to understand how to start a fire. Fire provides warmth, light, and can be used as a signal in case you need rescue or to scare off wild animals. Gather dry wood, kindling, and create a small pit to light the fire. Always put out the fire completely before leaving the area.


Living in the wilderness is a thrilling adventure, but it can be daunting for those who are not prepared. By undertaking essential survival skills, you can create your shelter, prepare a food source, and stay safe in the wild. Always be mindful of your surroundings, carry necessary tools and equipment, and map out multiple scenarios to keep yourself safe. The wilderness is an exciting and beautiful place, and by following these tips, you can be sure to enjoy it to the fullest.