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Thread: What's the difference? (winter vs. summer survival gear)

  1. #81

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    Sat phone, handwarmers or battery powered gloves, and fur hat are great too!

  2. #82

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    In a survival situation, you bet use that cat heater, whatever is available, you can always breathe outside air.

  3. #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by qsmx440 View Post
    Hey Phil. Don't put your feet down when taxi-ing. You only do it once! Don't ask. Thank goodness your feet are busy when landing :=). Actually I was considering leaving the floor out of the cub project. I like the view down..
    The challenger has a floor, it's just not structural and there are rudder cables and nose gear stearing under the heal cups that I don't want to get tangled in. What I ended up doing for the first flight was wearing my packs and leaving the tops unlaced. they were loose enough that I had plenty of ankle freedom. I used a pair of the Wiggy's liners too, which are much softer and more flexible than the regular felt ones.

    Phil

  4. #84

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    Something I kind of knew about but never paid attention to for winter stowed gear is over-the-boot mukluks. Kind of like Neos waders but with insulation. I was in Wiggy's today for other business and walked out with a pair. These will supplement my favorite boots nicely. There's nothing like buying winter gear in May.

    http://wiggys.com/moreinfo.cfm?Product_ID=41

    And since it is summer here's a picture of Neos river Trekkers. AKA Barney's sourdough slippers for the AK crowd (Barney's are a little heavier duty). Very effective and easy to pack.

    http://www.overshoesonline.com/rtk8/...pper-Brown.htm
    Last edited by sierra bravo; 05-25-2012 at 10:43 AM.

  5. #85
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    Quote Originally Posted by sierra bravo View Post
    Something I kind of knew about but never paid attention to for winter stowed gear is over-the-boot mukluks. Kind of like Neos waders but with insulation. I was in Wiggy's today for other business and walked out with a pair. These will supplement my favorite boots nicely. There's nothing like buying winter gear in May.

    http://wiggys.com/moreinfo.cfm?Product_ID=41

    And since it is summer here's a picture of Neos river Trekkers. AKA Barney's sourdough slippers for the AK crowd (Barney's are a little heavier duty). Very effective and easy to pack.

    http://www.overshoesonline.com/rtk8/...pper-Brown.htm
    Not exactly the same but I toss in a pair of gaters when I put the snowshoes in as part of my winter kit.
    "Fast is fine, but accuracy is everything." Wyatt Earp

  6. #86
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    In this article:
    http://www.adn.com/2013/12/10/322391...of-alaska.html

    An inflatable snowshoe is featured from this company:
    www.airlitesnowshoe.com

    They look pretty good for emergencies.
    With guns, we are 'citizens'. Without them, we are 'subjects'.
    "To be born free is an accident. To live free is a privilege. To die free is a responsibility."
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  7. #87

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    I substute the toll free number to the Margaritaville Beach Hotel for my fly-tent
    Last edited by OLDCROWE; 12-11-2013 at 04:58 PM.
    Remember, These are the Good old Days!

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    (North of the arctic circle, tundra, dry snow conditions.)

    Fur hat and mitts.

    -40 expedition-type sleeping bag (I prefer down).

    If you have a source, a piece of caribou hide (fur on), cut to fit your Therma Rest pad will improve your odds of a good night's sleep.

    These are great: warm, lightweight, best thing for use with snowshoes. Downside, they can get wet. Carry bunny boots just in case.

    http://shop.mukluks.com/Arctic-with-...ductinfo/AR-R/

    A stove that will run on av-gas.

    A carpenters handsaw to cut snowblocks for shelter/windbreak.

    Ready-to-eat or boil-in-bag military meals.

    A good, free-standing tent.

    Rescue strobe light and good flashlight with extra (alkaline) batteries.

    Good clothing is paramount. Weight is not much of a consideration since you'll be staying with the 'plane (right?). Down parka with fur-trimmed hood, wind-proof over-pants, as much wool as you can stand. Keep the warmer stuff in the baggage compartment and wear the lighter layers while flying.

  9. #89
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    Anybody here tested this out in real conditions?

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/US-Military-...item25730bd13f

    Glenn

  10. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by cubdriver2 View Post
    Anybody here tested this out in real conditions?

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/US-Military-...item25730bd13f

    Glenn
    I found the set to be a little short for me and was a bit chilly in colder conditions. It's better than the old poncho and poncho liner sleep system, but insulation is a little too thin for Alaska winter. In more mild climate (if you are average size) the system is not too bad. The price shown looks to be pretty reasonable.

  11. #91

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    Crap in the sense of weight and bulk--$79 is not much money for a sleeping bag-good reason for that. Clothing, sleeping bags and tent I would not go cheap on. I have been fortunate to use and have a seemingly endless amount of top notch clothing, tents and bags for many years and have become accustomed to why companies like ibex, arctetyx, Patagonia, western mountaineering, etc get top dollar. With that I do have a cold WX military sleeping bag with an integrated bivy compressed at the bottom of my work survival bag--but my intentions are not to travel with it--just survive-and I am highly confident in my skills if found in a true survival moment not to die because my bag is not of the highest quality. Meanwhile my many other quality sleeping bags are nicely kept in storage sacks so they don't lose loft and they get used on trips specific to the WX.
    I'm sure they will keep you warm though in a survival situation but if you plan on building a collection of bags for a variety of reasons/trips I would stick with quality. Having a quiver of bags is nice specific to the seasons and WX.

    Even our arctic sustainment package designed for polar mass causality scenarios, we have high quality civilian made bags-as users of high quality made bags we too want the best chance for those that we are treating.

    And when it comes to survival as I've mentioned before--if people are asking specific questions about certain things I will always recommend higher quality---I say that due to an assumption of lack of experience on their part otherwise they probably wouldn't ask--I say that while reading a one dimensional thread on some internet site from someone I don't know, so don't take it personal---just my experience.

    IMHO

  12. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by schnell49 View Post
    Crap in the sense of weight and bulk--$79 is not much money for a sleeping bag-good reason for that. Clothing, sleeping bags and tent I would not go cheap on. I have been fortunate to use and have a seemingly endless amount of top notch clothing, tents and bags for many years and have become accustomed to why companies like ibex, arctetyx, Patagonia, western mountaineering, etc get top dollar. With that I do have a cold WX military sleeping bag with an integrated bivy compressed at the bottom of my work survival bag--but my intentions are not to travel with it--just survive-and I am highly confident in my skills if found in a true survival moment not to die because my bag is not of the highest quality. Meanwhile my many other quality sleeping bags are nicely kept in storage sacks so they don't lose loft and they get used on trips specific to the WX.
    I'm sure they will keep you warm though in a survival situation but if you plan on building a collection of bags for a variety of reasons/trips I would stick with quality. Having a quiver of bags is nice specific to the seasons and WX.

    Even our arctic sustainment package designed for polar mass causality scenarios, we have high quality civilian made bags-as users of high quality made bags we too want the best chance for those that we are treating.

    And when it comes to survival as I've mentioned before--if people are asking specific questions about certain things I will always recommend higher quality---I say that due to an assumption of lack of experience on their part otherwise they probably wouldn't ask--I say that while reading a one dimensional thread on some internet site from someone I don't know, so don't take it personal---just my experience.

    IMHO
    So........... more money = better bag? How about this one http://www.ebay.com/itm/US-Military-...item33867b65d8


    Glenn

  13. #93

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    Generally speaking it takes money for quality

    that said it looks warm but I would bet its heavy and won't compress that well

    what temp bag are you looking for? I have a -20 feathered friends bag for sale if interested--been used about 12 times
    Last edited by schnell49; 12-12-2013 at 11:34 AM.

  14. #94
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    Quote Originally Posted by schnell49 View Post
    Generally speaking it takes money for quality

    that said it looks warm but I would bet its heavy and won't compress that well

    what temp bag are you looking for? I have a -20 feathered friends bag for sale if interested--been used about 12 times
    I was teasing you. Same bag. one new, one used.

    Glenn

  15. #95
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    Schnell49 - You seem to have a lot of outdoor experience and you have made numerous posts sharing that knowledge. Good stuff, thank you for posting.

    Bill
    Very Blessed.

  16. #96
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    Instant Summer Pacs are always in the plane and my pack when I hike out as emergency heat.

    I also have a couple of Little Hotties with me at all times in case I need to warm my hands up, especially when I'm away from the plane and there is no warm engine to use.

    Jerry
    If it looks smooth...it might be

    If it looks rough...it is!!

  17. #97

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    Stewart,
    What did you end up doing for a winter bag in the plane? My old down -20F Marmot bag is done (great bag, but the way) and I’m thinking a Wiggy’s for the “stuff and forget” performance.
    J
    Quote Originally Posted by StewartB View Post
    Roger,

    I understand. I was looking at an $800 down bag a couple of days go and cringed at the thought of taking it home to compress it for the long haul. But there's little choice. I already own the -20* bag so I'll use it as the sacrificial lamb and see how things go.

    I went the opposite way for sheep hunting. I retired my synthetic bag and went to a +20* down bag. I loved every minute of hunting season spent in that bag. 1-1/2# and it compresses so small you can't believe it. Greg puts his inside his Mountain Hardware Conduit bivy and still stuffs it in a Sea-to-Summit XS compression sack. Incredible. I can't do that with my GoreTex bivy, though.

    Good stuff, guys. Keep it coming.

    Stewart

  18. #98

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    Wiggy's.
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  19. #99
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    I totally agree with the notion that your actual "Survival Gear" should be of excellent quality....this isn't the place to save a few bucks.

    Shelter is just as important as good gear. There are places and times where a tent is going to be about the best you can do. If there's snow on the ground, you may be able to construct a one person shelter. Slip into one of those with a decent ~ -20 or greater sleeping bag and you'll be toasty warm for the night. Same goes for a snow cave, though you need quite a lot of snow to make those.

    In any case, there's no way I'm going to siwash if there's ANY way to build a shelter of some sort.

    When it comes to foot gear, there's a fine line between what works for cold weather survival and what fits on the rudder pedals. I prefer to wear good warm boots while flying. Bunny boots or, in fairly dry country, military style mukluks work well.

    Gloves, lots of gloves, including at least one set of serious arctic mittens as over gloves. I like leather gloves for working around camp, then slip the mittens on over. Tie the mittens on a lanyard that loops around your neck.....never lost, or dropped in snow.

    Freeze your hands or your feet and you're going to be in trouble.

    I also add a couple modes of starting a fire. The more the merrier.

    MTV
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  20. #100
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    This is the winter pile before it goes in the plane. Amazing what fits in a cub.

    Jerry

    Click image for larger version. 

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    If it looks smooth...it might be

    If it looks rough...it is!!
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  21. #101

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    Jerry, forgive my ignorance, but what is all the yellow folded stuff to the left?

  22. #102
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kid Durango View Post
    Jerry, forgive my ignorance, but what is all the yellow folded stuff to the left?
    z-pad

    It's my tent floor.

    Jerry
    If it looks smooth...it might be

    If it looks rough...it is!!
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  23. #103
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    Quote Originally Posted by stewartb View Post
    Wiggy's.
    Yep, when I checked at Rohn for bicycles and foot travelers for human powered race to McGrath, I would be there 4-5 days and slept in my Wiggies bag at -20 to -45 outside every night. Comfortable not just survivable. Dog straw on snow under a spruce tree. Cabin full of Iditarod pre race volunteers, and had to be ready to get racers cared for inside a small wall tent. Wiggies stuff is the real deal.


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  24. #104

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    A 12 year old thread resurrected. A few things have changed in that time. The basics have not. Stay warm even if you get wet, make water to stay hydrated, consume calories, communicate. I have a high time pilot/low time Alaskan to go with me this year. Good times are coming. Happy Thanksgiving!

  25. #105

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    Heh-heh. It seems to be my MO to drag these things up. I think that I enjoy seeing how different people handle the same challenges.
    Aren’t we all lucky to have each other to keep us going in the right direction(s)?!

    Quote Originally Posted by stewartb View Post
    A 12 year old thread resurrected. A few things have changed in that time. The basics have not. Stay warm even if you get wet, make water to stay hydrated, consume calories, communicate. I have a high time pilot/low time Alaskan to go with me this year. Good times are coming. Happy Thanksgiving!

  26. #106

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    Link

    Offers ‘em compressed now - DOD style.
    https://www.wiggys.com/sleeping-bags...uum-packaging/
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  27. #107

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    I use my bags for more than survival. They stuff nicely in the compression sack they come in.

    Make sure your bivy bag is big enough for the Wiggy’s bag. I have a bivy that’s designed for a thin mummy bag. It works great with my sheep hunting bag but wouldn’t fit a Wiggy’s and it would suck to discover that when you needed it. I’m a big fan of my Hilleberg Bivanorak. Lots of room and it has arms. https://youtu.be/PiE0Hz9cAVg
    Last edited by stewartb; 11-22-2020 at 10:09 AM.

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    four tools here. Someone mentioned a saw. I used to carry a Wyoming saw but quit years ago. I’m not a fan of saws either but this one is free with my entrenching tool which I believe to be invaluable. The Eastwing Hudson Bay ax Is as light as a hatchet I think and much more valuable. The two pieces between the entrenching tool and the come-a-along is a rope block and tackle. Use line which you already carry. You can do wonders with a block and tackle. It’s made in Australia and there was a guy in Talkeetna that used to sell them. They work. The rope come-a-long is a wonderful tool. Beats a cable unit by a long shot. Line isn’t stored on a drum so you can use as long a line as you want and is capable of a continuous pull. As with any kind of winch the deadman is the key. I carry a 100 feet of both 1/8” and 3/16” blue steel winch line. The 1/8” line has a breaking strength of over 2000 lbs and the 3/16” is in the 6000 to 7000 pound range. The 1/8” line is about the size of my fist and the weight is about negligible. I suggest that if your buying line of any kind, don’t go yo Walmart or Lowe’s. Go to at least a boat supply place or better yet to a manufacturer or supplier that give testing data for their line. Blue steel line is slick so you need to know how to tie appropriate knots. A person could easily carry three hundred feet of 1/8” blue steel line and fit it in a sock.
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  29. #109
    mvivion's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by reliableflyer View Post
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    four tools here. Someone mentioned a saw. I used to carry a Wyoming saw but quit years ago. I’m not a fan of saws either but this one is free with my entrenching tool which I believe to be invaluable. The Eastwing Hudson Bay ax Is as light as a hatchet I think and much more valuable. The two pieces between the entrenching tool and the come-a-along is a rope block and tackle. Use line which you already carry. You can do wonders with a block and tackle. It’s made in Australia and there was a guy in Talkeetna that used to sell them. They work. The rope come-a-long is a wonderful tool. Beats a cable unit by a long shot. Line isn’t stored on a drum so you can use as long a line as you want and is capable of a continuous pull. As with any kind of winch the deadman is the key. I carry a 100 feet of both 1/8” and 3/16” blue steel winch line. The 1/8” line has a breaking strength of over 2000 lbs and the 3/16” is in the 6000 to 7000 pound range. The 1/8” line is about the size of my fist and the weight is about negligible. I suggest that if your buying line of any kind, don’t go yo Walmart or Lowe’s. Go to at least a boat supply place or better yet to a manufacturer or supplier that give testing data for their line. Blue steel line is slick so you need to know how to tie appropriate knots. A person could easily carry three hundred feet of 1/8” blue steel line and fit it in a sock.
    Axes are far better than hatchets. That said, at Cool School (Air Force Arctic Survival Training) instructors admonished us to consider carrying saws rather than an axe or hatchet. In fact, they would not permit students to take those to the field for the survival exercises. They pointed out (accurately) that at -20 F or colder, wood becomes VERY hard, and an INEXPERIENCED hand with an axe or especially a hatchet can easily strike a glancing blow, and ricochet that sharp edge into an ankle/leg, etc. If that happens, your chances of survival go from very good to not very good at all.

    I realize that you folks are all absolute experts with an axe......but understand that, like the instructors at Cool School, posts here should contain cautions as appropriate.

    And, if you’ve ever camped out in cold temps, you likely realize how easy it is to get dehydrated. In fact, in real cold, it’s hard NOT to get dehydrated. When you’re dehydrated, you get goofy, for lack of a better term, and coordination is poor. That’s when swinging a sharp bit on the end of a handle can end badly.....even for the best.

    Ive carried a Japanese style folding pruning saw since. These saws cut on the push stroke, and will very quickly cut through a substantial diameter log. Very safe, very light and compact. I’ve never seen a situation where I felt I needed an axe in one of my “unplanned camping” trips.

    Be careful out there, don’t turn an “unplanned camping” episode into a no joke survival situation....those helo crews may not be able to get there in time.

    MTV
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  30. #110

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    FWIW, I prefer a cable come-along because when I've needed a come-along there's been water involved and before long everything I've touched is iced up. My come-along still works. I do plan to test the lateral pull strength of my ice screws. I've never used them to tug a heavy load so I don't know what to expect of them. They're handy as a winch point but for anyone whose dragged a plane mostly out of a hole and watched their rigging fail and the plane slip back in? I think knowing is better than hoping.
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  31. #111

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    I don’t normally carry the rope come a long but when I need one I find the serve me far better than a cable one. The cable one has limited pull and frequently it barely takes up the slack in the system before the end of its cable is reached and requires re rigging to complete the job. If you try a rope pull I think you’ll be pleased. I’ve used them often in numerous situations including extreme cold, wet and ice and never had one slip. The block and tackle apparatus in the photo above works great and it’s light it. I carry it regularly.

    I am familiar with the cool school training. Most people in the class were military pilots who may and may not have been outdoorsmen and not familiar with the use of an ax. That probably accounts for their frowning on axes. I have found in cold weather mostly I would be taking lower branches off spruce trees and they snap off easily with the ax, regardless of which end is used. One can get through thicker ice with an ax than with any saw that I might be inclined to carry. I find that I depend on the flat end of the ax at least as much as I do the blade end.
    Last edited by reliableflyer; 11-23-2020 at 02:40 PM.

  32. #112

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    Quote Originally Posted by stewartb View Post
    FWIW, I prefer a cable come-along because when I've needed a come-along there's been water involved and before long everything I've touched is iced up. My come-along still works. I do plan to test the lateral pull strength of my ice screws. I've never used them to tug a heavy load so I don't know what to expect of them. They're handy as a winch point but for anyone whose dragged a plane mostly out of a hole and watched their rigging fail and the plane slip back in? I think knowing is better than hoping.
    I'd also be curious as to your findings, Stewart. Keep us posted.

    For firewood gathering I prefer a hatchet and a quality folding saw. The hatchet is used to harvest the dry, dead lower branches (twigs) of black spruce. They make excellent kindling IF you're lucky enough to go down near some trees. Not always the case up here, so a stove is essential. I carry a tiny butane stove (the tank sleeps with me) and a multi-fuel stove. A hatchet makes a better hammer. The saw is more efficient at cutting a small log and is less dangerous than an axe, but the saw is a bit fragile if mistreated.

    I ditch the two summer sleeping bags and one (of the two) mattress pads. Replaced with a down expedition bag (Western Mountaineering) and a caribou hide sleeping pad. My wife and I would not intentionally camp in winter so we can take turns sleeping in a survival situation.

    The Inreach is always with us, as is a handheld VHF radio.

    As MTV alludes, a tent is very desirable under the severe winter conditions one might encounter in Alaska, arctic Canada or the high mountains of the west. Getting out of the wind makes a huge difference to your chances of survival.

    I replace summer tie-down ropes with winter ones, including the ice screws. Folding snow shovel and a snow knife added, along with "bunny" boots and good down parka with fur ruff (carried in the pod - I wear Steger mukluks, light leather gloves, light down jacket, wool everything else and Carhartts in the 'plane) along with fur hat and beaver mitts (both made by my wife). Rope come-along added. Snowshoes if conditions warrant. Wing and engine covers and (usually) my one kw Yamaha generator. Good headlamp. Candles for light in the tent. Some high energy snacks.

    I ditch the summer bug-spray, although it does make good fire starter.

    And, for my flying missions at least, we don't intentionally land anywhere that we can't reasonably be assured of a high level of survivability. Typically, we take off from our home airport and travel directly to our destination as per flight plan/flight itinerary. And that destination is normally our own or a friends cabin. So if we land and get stuck in overflow or otherwise damage the airplane, the cabin is right there with all kinds of support mechanisms in place.

    It's the un-intentional landings that are most life-threatening.

    Of course, if you live anywhere where it's a thirty-minute walk to a 7-11, you can replace most of the above with a cell 'phone.
    Last edited by NunavutPA-12; 11-23-2020 at 02:09 PM.
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  33. #113
    mvivion's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by reliableflyer View Post
    I don’t normally carry the rope come a long but when I need one I find the serve me far better than a cable one. The cable one has limited pull and frequently it barely takes up the slack in the system before the end of its cable is reached and requires resigning to complete the job. If you try a rope pull I think you’ll be pleased. I’ve used them often in numerous situations including extreme cold, wet and ice and never had one slip. The block and tackle apparatus in the photo above works great and it’s light it. I carry it regularly.

    I am familiar with the cool school training. Most people in the class were military pilots who may and may not have been outdoorsmen and not familiar with the use of an ax and that probably accounts for their frowning on axes. I have found in cold weather mostly I would be taking lower branches off spruce trees and they snap off easily with the ax, regardless of which end is used. One can get through thicker ice with an ax than with a saw that I might be inclined to carry. I find that I depend on the flat end of the ax at least as much as I do the blade end.
    Yes, the Cool School folks were speaking to the lowest common denominator....which, by the way, so are we here on this forum.

    No doubt there are uses for axes, and as you say, not just the sharp part. Hatchets, not so much, but they too can be beneficial, used carefully.

    The country I lived and worked in for 20 years made pretty thick ice. The "You'll need an extension for that ice auger bit, BTW" kinda ice. Hacking through that stuff with an axe would certainly keep you busy while awaiting rescue or weather to improve, but....

    Anyway, my point was mostly that you need to aim this stuff to that lowest common denominator here as well. Not everyone is a superhuman woodsman, ya know.

    And, actually, in Cool School, it was the three Army guys in my class that were the most "entertainment". They came in as self described "woodsmen".....didn't work out quite that way. It was one of them that got clinically dehydrated. We held him down and made him drink water....

    MTV
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    Some of the guys I went through survival school had never slept outside a night in their life. Not even their own back yard as a kid. And a guy in the class behind me died because he got in his sleeping bag when he was completely wet. Hypothermia. As alluded to above, when you've been deprived of food and are cold and wet, sometimes you don't make the wisest choices.
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