Wilderness survival is no joke and no mere adventure; it is a match of strength and wits between you and nature, and while you cannot outmatch nature in strength, you can use your wits to escape the trap it sets up for you. However, wits alone will not work without sufficient background knowledge, and what better path is there to knowledge than a comprehensive, well-written book, containing in-depth survival information that could save your life? For the nature enthusiast, outdoor survival knowledge is immensely important, and fortunately, myriad books have been written on the subject that can help you arm yourself with the necessary skills and information.
One excellent survival guide is “The Book of Survival: The Original Guide to Staying Alive in the City, the Suburbs or the Wild Lands Beyond,” by Anthony Greenback. This is the kind of book that is a compulsory part of your camping, hiking or mountaineering gear, because it covers every topic of outdoor survival and has advice relating to every situation that could possibly arise. The chapters have names like “Too Fast: Avalanche,” “Too High: How to Get Down,” and “Too Dry: Searching for Water.” Apart from wilderness survival topics, there is even a chapter called “Too Many – Surviving Crowds” that can be applied to urban crowds in malls, museums, etc., as well as to tourist crowds in the outdoors. The best thing about the book is that it will inform you of very simple steps you can take that can make the difference between life and death. This difference can be as small as a hand mirror or a wrist watch packed into your bag, and if such easy steps can save your life, then the time and money you spend on this book is surely worth it.
Another book that has gained very favorable customer reviews is “Primitive Wilderness Living and Survival Skills – Naked into the Wilderness,” by John McPherson. The key feature of this work is that unlike most survival books that will, for example, tell you to build a raft and end it at that, this one will give you explicit, step by step instructions on how to make one. It teaches essential and little-known skills such as tanning animal skin (buckskin to be specific), make simple bows, baskets, tools and shelters, and to create fire from naturally-occurring substances. A common problem with many survival books is that they often focus too much on techniques using modern equipment and methods, for example fishing using motorboats. In reality, you will most likely be without any motor boats when you are battling a wilderness survival situation, and this is one book that deals with survival on a completely primitive level, without use of any fancy equipment or the latest engineering knowledge. This book will not tell you how to fight against a hostile natural environment; rather it will teach you to thrive in the wilderness by really becoming a part of nature itself.
Either of these books, and ideally, both of them, should be studied carefully by people who are likely to spend a lot of time outdoors, and will be beneficial even for those who already have some basic knowledge of the subject. Both of these can be easily carried with other outdoor gear, and have enormous potential to save your life should it ever come to a closely-fought battle between you and the wild!