Saturday, January 20, 2007

Could You Survive in the Wild Alone? Learn from SurvivorMan Les Stroud

by Paula Neal Mooney

I caught this dude Les Stroud -- aka SurvivorMan -- on The View yesterday, and I'm still thinking about him this morning so you know that's my cue to blog about him. Les Stroud hosts the Discovery Channel show called SurvivorMan, which tracks Stroud's survival in perilous locations with no food and water. SurvivorMan must do just that -- survive on his own, as a solo man. No fawning, background crew handing him KitKats. No paramedics on hand.

Les Stroud is the real deal, no reality show fake is he. He has people drop him off in crazy and remote places and tells them to come pick him up after seven days. Seven days.

Just SurvivorMan and his camera to film how he's getting along: making a fire out of an old gas can and its fumes, eating a scorpion after removing the stinger, or using his SurvivorMan mouth to pull the needle-like point off the top of a plant to reveal -- voila! -- the strong-as-hell thread attached. Who knew?

I've read that SurvivorMan also had to cook a rat and eat it.

Of course, watching Les Stroud surviving some pretty remote locations had me thinking of the James Kim tragedy, where the cNET editor died in the snowy wilderness trekking and trying to get help for his stranded wife and two girls.

So Les Stroud is providing a great service to viewers of SurvivorMan, who can learn immensely from the ingenious tips he uses to make it out alive. Here's a bit of the vital information SurvivorMan has provided if stranded in the cold in a car:

* Wrap your entire body, especially your head, in extra clothing, blankets or, in a pinch, newspaper or wrapping paper.

* Stay awake. You will be less vulnerable to hypothermia and frostbite.

* Run the motor and heater for approximately 10 minutes per hour, with a window open slightly to let in fresh air. Make sure that snow is not blocking the exhaust pipe, to reduce the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.

* Do not eat snow because it will lower your core body temperature. If you do not have water, melt snow for drinking purposes.

* If you are worried about your supply of bottled water freezing, place a water-filled container next to your body to keep it defrosted.


Read Les Stroud's blog for more of his amazing adventures...


And let us not forget the wisdom of Ecclesiastes 4:9-12, which is a warning to probably not go it alone in the first place -- if we can help it. The James Kim tragedy notwithstanding -- I applaud James Kim for going off as a hero to try and save his family -- and I pray Les Stroud remains safe, because he is doing a great work. Yet and still...

Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work:
If one falls down, his friend can help him up.

But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!

Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm.
But how can one keep warm alone?
Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves.
A cord of three strands is not quickly broken

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2 comments:

mario said...

Paula haven't seen Les Stroud yet but I'm a huge fan of Man vs Wild (Bear Grylls) . Sounds like he does what SurvivorMan does.

Paula Neal Mooney said...

Hey Mario!

Man vs. Wild sounds familiar but I haven't seen it. Now I have two shows to check up on...

Paula Neal Mooney