Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Primitive Skills on TV

There are several programs I've been following this year, Dual Survival, Naked and Afraid, and Fat Guys in the Woods...they're mind candy. One particular guy that stands out is Matt Graham, from Dual Survival and Dude, You're Screwed.  He is touted as a long term primitive skills expert and it shows in some of the technics he exhibits.  He has been shown hunting wild boar and fishing with the dart & atlatl, spinning friction fires, foraging wild edible plants, and demonstrating ingenious building technics for shelters, beds, and rafts.  Matt is a very charismatic and knowledgeable survivalist...I really enjoy him.  A new show, on the Weather Channel is Fat Guys in the Woods, with Creek Stuart.  I was surprised to find that I had several books by him in my library, that I revisited, after watching him in action.  Basically, he takes several unskilled guys into the woods for a week with only the clothes on their backs and a few basic tools.  One common theme is that it always seems to be freezing temperatures and raining, so their shelter and fire making skills are vital.  Naked and Afraid really pushes it to the limit as a man and woman try to survive for 21 days, starting out naked and with only a couple tools.  They get to bring a survival item, which is usually a knife or machete, a fire starter, or maybe a pot.  In all these shows you see the importance of building a proper shelter, and making fire for heat, purifying water, cooking, and controlling insects.  The quest for water, and later food, and the various tools, traps, and containers are instructive.  My family has commented that I've been spending too much time in front of the tv lately...maybe they're right.