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Wilderness Survival for Seniors

An old guy in the woods.Listen up Seniors . . . Don’t let your age stop you from learning and practicing wilderness survival skills. How are we as seniors likely to find ourselves in a survival situation? Generally speaking, our vehicles are in pretty good shape, but all it takes is a little side trip from an established itinerary. Even just an hour off the main road, down a two-track and you are 30 miles into the brush which translates to a 3 or 4 day hike out in good weather.

Did I have more energy and endurance way back when? Of course! Then I could literally run 10 miles. Now, I’m doing very well to make 100 yards, but I still have the ability to walk for miles. Life experience has taught us all many things, pacing ourselves is just one of them.

There are a lot of us baby boomers out there who thoroughly enjoy travel and maybe taking the time in our retirement years to go to the places we put off all those years ago. We can still do a lot more than our kids seem to think we can. What the heck, we paid our dues.

What seniors can do to prepare for survival in the wilderness:


Don't be afraid to ask your doctor for an emergency supply of your crucial medications.  In today's world of terrorists and super storms, most doctors will understand your need and comply with your request.
 

Keep a survival kit containing those items you may need should you find yourself lost or stranded somewhere in the wilderness, such as a complete change of clothes, food, shelter, water, a means of starting multiple fires, and a knife – one of the most important tools to have in your kit.  Weight will be a factor so keep it as light as you can. 30 pounds will feel like 60 in a very short time and 60 lbs will feel like a ton. So, have a grab and go bag in your trunk or RV, but keep it as light as possible.
  • If you are prepared with the basics, you could build a small fire which works wonders at pushing back the grimness of your predicament. That small act of survival will put you in the right frame of mind to assess your situation and surroundings, and figure out how to proceed from there.
  • The information on this website related to these topics will explain skills and equipment you would need to survive.  These skills are for everyone, including senior citizens.
All it takes is a pot hole or an unseen rock to break an axle or an electrical problem can leave you stranded. “Be prepared” and it is likely that you won’t need to rely on those survival skills, but if you do . . .

So what should seniors do differently?

The answer is really quite simple. Do everything the same as any other survivor, just pace yourself and maybe go a little slower.  You know your own limits.  Take more breaks, build your shelter a little earlier and just do what needs to be done.