Swamp survival could be the harshest situation possible if you don’t do things right. The terrain makes it difficult for you to move, and dangerous animals blend in with the surroundings and are not easily visible to the untrained eye.
Swamp Survival | Getting Out of the Marsh
Swamp survival is not an easy task, especially if you lack the necessary gear to get you through. You can be walking in open water with decades of decaying leaves, branches, and other organic materials. You might think you’re walking on solid ground, yet you’re on an island of unstable floating grass that’s constantly shifting. It’s the kind of habitat where all sorts of crawling animals can stealthily sneak up on each other for food, or worse, an unsuspecting human. For whatever unfortunate reason you’re stranded in a swamp, here’s what you can do to survive and make it out in one piece.
1. Study Your Surroundings
Take a good look around you and carefully estimate if you’ll have to spend the night outdoors. Preparations are best done before sunset while there’s still some daylight to aid you. Examine the tools available for you to determine what you can utilize as a fire-starting device.
2. Start a Fire
You should consider starting a fire before sundown. You have to gather every combustible material you can find. Fire is a necessity for boiling water, cooking, and heat to get you through the cold night. The bark of a Cyprus tree is an excellent fire starter.
3. Boil Water
Do your best to look for the cleanest water source in the area, then boil it for consumption. There’s no way of knowing how safe the water is, but it should do, for the time being, so you can survive.
4. Swamp Food
You must have something to eat to give you energy the following morning. If you don’t have a food supply, then you’ll have to make do with what’s readily available. Frogs are abundant in swamps, and they’re the closest you can get for food that tastes like chicken. Roast them over the fire and help yourself.
5. Build an Overnight Shelter
A simple shelter to help keep you warm overnight is a must. Try to search the area for solid ground and an area that seems far away from possible predator attacks. Gather as many branches and leaves as you can to build a debris shelter.
6. Survey the Area
Walk around a few meters radius outside your shelter before getting a good night’s sleep. It always pays to be vigilant when you’re in a place like this. You never know what silent creatures are just around the corner, so it’s better that you find them first before they get you in your sleep.
7. Find Your Way Out
Everything you did the night before is to prepare you for a fresh start at sunrise. At the first sign of daylight, find your way out as fast as you can. If you’re not familiar with the terrain, there’s no telling where the first sign of civilization might be. Use the river as a guide to lead you to the nearest community.
I can guarantee you that these steps are the best course of action when you’re lost in the marsh. The difficult terrain is only part of the challenge. There’s also always the possibility of crossing paths with venomous snakes and stalking reptiles along the way. It’s dangerous and no camping gear can save you from such creatures. All that aside, your best bet is to stick to the game plan to increase your chances of survival.
What can you say about these instructions in swamp survival? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on September 22, 2017, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.