starting a fire

Urban Survival Skills Every Survivalist Needs To Know

Surviving in the thick jungle or a vast deserted area is much easier when you’re familiar with some basic urban survival skills. Being without food and water with nothing more with you than your clothes and shoes is absolutely terrifying. Knowing how to make a shelter or start a fire is of life-saving relevance if you ever find yourself in such a threatening situation. There are plenty of guides of how-to-survive available and here are some tips about some basic survival tactics that is good to have.

Urban Survival Skills

1. Setting up a shelter

Once you find a suitable location for your shelter that is safe and dry, you can start building up a campsite. Use any extra clothes you have such as ponchos, jackets or even an old parachute for extra cover. To make a simple lean-to, find a downed tree resting at an angle or set a firm branch against a tree and stack smaller branches close together on one side.

2. Starting a fire

If you have matches or lighter with you, that makes things much quicker and easier when starting a fire. Gather up smaller branches and dry leaves and grass for a good firewood. If you don’t have any fire-making tools around, try an old fire-starting method – friction.

3. Find clean water

Finding drinkable water is of great importance since human body can withstand without water only for a couple of days. Long-standing ground water sources like puddles or ponds are full of water-borne bacteria, so you should always boil the water before drinking. Rain, snow or dew, however, are reliable sources of drinking water which you can collect fairly easy. Soak up smaller parts of clothes in dew or rain and simply wring it out.


4. Identify edible plants

Knowing which plant can kill you and which is good to eat is the most important thing in surviving. Edible plants like dandelion, cattails, burdocks or primrose are very common plants which everyone can recognize, it’s just a matter of memorization. If you’re uncertain about plants being edible or not, don’t risk poisoning and don’t eat them then.

5. Navigating

Navigating without a GPS or a compass is not so hard if you have some basic knowledge about the position of sun and stars. Remember that sun always rises east and sets in the west. At night, follow the North Star, the brightest star in the sky. If you’re in the woods, snap small tree branches along the way or tie bright-colored fabrics around the trees when passing by some major landmarks.


It is important to get the right survival attitude. Remember some basics about survival you’ve seen in survival reality shows, you’ve read in some books or seen on the internet. Make a nicely insulated shelter, start a fire and familiarize yourself with surroundings. Finding water is the key and then think about food and finding rescue. Use some of these urban survival skills and your situation won’t look so hopeless anymore.

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