11 Survival Skills That’ll Help You MacGyver Your Way Out Of Any Situation

survival skills
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First, it’s important to note that when we set out looking for the most important survival skills, a ton of other outlets suggested these were skills “every man should know.” That’s some dangerous noise. Do we not want women or girls to survive, too? Women go hiking, jogging, or just traveling on their own all the time. During any of those outings, they could find themselves stranded and in need of survival skills. Point is, sex has nothing to do with knowing how to dress a wound, find clean water, or set a dislocated shoulder. A rudimentary knowledge of survival skills is important whether you live in the city or out in the country. And while there are tons of useful books full of even more information on how to survive on your own, we put together a list of the absolute most basic tips for survival to get you through emergencies, camping trips, or a zombie apocalypse.

Before your mind wanders to the plotline for 127 Hours, sawing off limbs did not make the list. Whatever your reasons for needing these tips, it’s always a good idea to practice them a few times before you have to put them to use.

survival skills
Twentieth Century Fox

Catching and Purifying Water

Water is fantastically important, especially in hotter climates. If you want to survive, you have to stay hydrated. First and foremost, if at all possible, look for moving water. Water that is sitting on the ground is more likely to contain contaminants and bacteria that will make you sick. Also, attempt to boil your water. If, for instance, you’re traveling with a pot, metal water bottle, or canteen, catch the water in your canteen or pot. Then heat it over a fire until it boils. This isn’t failproof but boiling your water before you drink it will help kill off a lot of bacteria that could be living in it, even if it’s from a moving source.

Dress a Wound

A lot of times you end up stranded because you’d fallen or hurt yourself with no good way to keep moving or turn around. Learning how to take care of a wound or injury will help keep you alive (and possibly make you mobile, again). With open wounds, there are two important steps to keep in mind:

1. Stop the bleeding

You can do this by applying pressure, keeping the wound elevated, or in the case of major bleeding, creating a tourniquet. (See video, below.)

2. Clean the wound

Obviously, if there is significant bleeding, cleaning your wound isn’t your priority. As weird as it sounds, gushing blood will do a good job of cleaning out your wound on its own. What you’ll want to make sure of, though, is that you don’t allow the wound to get dirty. In other words, if you tie off your wound with fabric, make sure you’re using the cleanest part of your shirt to place over the wound. For smaller wounds, it’s really best to rinse them off with clean water before bandaging.

Break Something?

Creating a splint is easier than you think. Check out this video.

Learn A Couple Knots

What? You’re not a Boy Scout? Knots are an essential skill to learn for not just survival but everyday life. Tying a good knot can make or break a tree swing. A secure knot can even save lives when you’re securing that giant lawn chair in the back of your open trunk. Knots also help with tourniquets, rock climbing, and tent building.

Starting A Fire

They always make this look so hard in the movies, but with the right tools, it’s not that bad. The easiest advice we can give is just to carry a waterproof match on your keychain or in your hiking kit. Barring that, this video walks you through starting a fire with no help.

Building Shelter

If you know you’re stuck in nature for the long haul, building shelter is essential. You’ll want to make sure you’re not too close to any moving water. You also want to look for signs of movement: The last thing you want is set up camp on a bear’s main throughway. Next, while it may not seem vital, don’t underestimate the importance of being off the ground. Building a floor for yourself will keep you away from the damp ground, which will keep you warm when temperatures drop. It’ll also keep you a little further away from small, ground-based critters. Finally, even the most primitively roofed shelter will help keep you from the elements. A midnight storm? Not nearly as stressful if you’ve got a nice thatched roof over your head.

Staying Warm Without a Sleeping Bag

No sleeping bag? No problem. (Okay. It’s a bit of a problem.) Take a cue from animals and nestle into nature. Keeping your shelter small and as wind-proof as possible is one way to keep warm overnight. Another option is to pack dry leaves around you. Literally use leaves everywhere. Under the floor of your shelter. On top of your shelter’s floor. Stuff leaves between your shirt and your jacket. You might even want to use leaves to cover yourself up once you’re in your shelter.

Navigating Unfamiliar Terrains

Let’s be real: A compass is really only as useful as its owner. And the concept of following the North Star? Only helpful if you know heading north isn’t going to just lead you further into the unknown. One of the best ways to figure out where you are and where you need to go is to get as high as possible. Drag yourself up that hill. Climb that tree. Get as high as you can and look for signs of life… even if it’s just a slightly brighter sky in the distance. Another option? Find water and walk along with it. As we previously mentioned: Water is essential to life. That means you’re almost guaranteed to find more humans if you just continue to follow the water. However, never camp on the water’s edges, as you could be swept away during a flash flood. When it’s time to set up camp, head inland by at least several yards. Higher ground is also preferred.

Finding Food

So, you forgot to pack your “edible plants and berries” book? Honestly, we’ve all seen Into The Wild and know that eating forest roughage isn’t always a safe bet. Even if you’ve been a strict vegan for decades, stick to the meat (just start small). Build a rudimentary slingshot, trap, or bow and arrow and try to nab some small critters. Or, if you have the patience and the water: Try to fish. Fish is high in protein and, let’s face it, requires the least amount of energy. That’s why old guys love fishing.

Cooking Food

That campfire you built? It’s for more than just keeping you warm and boiling water. You’re going to need to cook on it, too. If you didn’t come with a pan, this will most likely look like shaving down a branch, skewering your meat, and holding it over the fire. (If you soak the wood first, it’ll do better over the flames.) Or use a thin, flat rock like a skillet. A word of warning: No matter how much you love sushi, now isn’t the time to cut corners. Burn your meat.

Signal For Help

At night, a fire will help. During the day, work on creating a giant “X” in a clearing. Start with something as long and as wide as your body, so you have at least something to start with. As you wait, continue building onto your X to make it even bigger. Choose material that contrasts against the ground, so it really sticks out.

Columbia Pictures’s Aquaverse in Thailand Will Feature Movie-Themed Rides and Attractions

Columbia Pictures Aquaverse opening in 2021
(Facebook/Columbia Pictures Aquaverse)

Few things feel better than fully immersing yourself in your favorite movies, escaping the real world for a while and embracing another reality entirely. While escapism through movies, TV shows, video games, and books is something we’ve relied upon heavily over the years, some of our favorite franchises are inviting us to take things a step further. Last year we learned about Super Nintendo World, a theme park with a Disney World feel but filled with all things Nintendo. Now, Columbia Pictures is following suit with a water park based around some of our very favorite movies.

The newly-announced Aquaverse water park is coming to Thailand thanks to Sony Pictures Entertainment and Amazon Falls. Rather than building the entire thing from the ground up, an existing Bangsaray water park is being given a real-life movie makeover.

Though other parks such as Universal Studios in Orlando have attractions based on movies from Sony-owned Columbia Pictures, Aquaverse will be the first to draw all of its inspiration from the production company’s films.

“We are creating opportunities for all audiences around the world to immerse themselves deeper into our stories through water parks, touring exhibitions, and theme park attractions,” Jeffrey Godsick, Sony Pictures Entertainment’s executive VP of global partnerships and brand management and head of location-based entertainment told Variety.

The park is set to open this coming October and will include both land and water attractions for the ultimate wave of family fun. Here’s just a preview of what you can expect from the one and only Aquaverse, courtesy of Variety:

A Men in Black water coaster includes a 12-meter free-fall, a fully-enclosed Ghostbusters-themed water dome where you can dodge ghost traps via raft, an outdoor neon Bad Boys-inspired go-kart track, and even a Jumanji jungle adventure.

You’ll also encounter rides and attractions inspired by classics like Surf’s Up and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs to round out your movie-magic adventure. With nearly six months to go before the park opens, you have time to watch them all again before diving in IRL.

Disney’s Immersive Star Wars Resort Features Real Lightsaber

Rey holding a new Disney lightsaber
(Slashfilm)

Before the pandemic hit, Disney’s Star Wars themed park, Galaxy’s Edge had just opened, and promised to give visitors a one-of-a-kind experience. It’s so much like being in a Star Wars movie, one dad and his kid even filmed their own in between rides. But, then the park closed along with the rest of the world, and we’ve had to wait a whole year to spend way too much money pretending to be a Jedi Knight.

But not anymore! For May (the) 4th (be with you), the unofficial “Star Wars Day” Disney didn’t miss the opportunity to hype their newest draw to Galaxy’s Edge, Their Galactic Starcruiser… hotel? Ride? LARPing Convention?  It seems like it’s all that wrapped into one, and next summer, promises an even more immersive experience, complete with this:

Reportedly that’s not a camera trick. That’s a new kind of lightsaber -an apparently real one, created by Walt Disney Imagineering Research and Development for the Starcruiser experience. No word on if it can cut and cauterize wounds. But otherwise, during a stay on the Starcruiser, passengers will board a pod and “travel” to the Halcyon, the Galactic Starcruiser that will be their home/hotel for the 2-night adventure.

The Disney blog describes the whole experience, which sounds like living in a Star Wars movie, complete with familiar characters,  lightsaber training, secret missions and some terrible musical numbers courtesy of George Lucas’s refusal to stop messing with success.

According to the Disney blog, “This isn’t storytelling – it’s storyliving, where you’ll see, feel and live Star Wars in a whole new way.” It’s also story-goingbroke, as I’m sure you’d have to rob Jabba the Hutt to afford it.

James Vanderbeek Opens Up About the Pain of Miscarriage

Vanderbeek Opens Up About the Pain of Miscarriage
(Instagram/vanderjames)

In recent years, society has been making big strides in destigmatizing mental health issues, especially when it comes to men. Traditionally, men have a harder time being open and honest about their struggles, despite the fact that we often struggle as much as women.

One particular area that men are becoming more open about is the pain of losing a child through a miscarriage. Most of the time, the sympathy is with the woman who was carrying the baby, but the pain of a miscarriage is not isolated to that potential mom. Dads feel it too, and it’s time we acknowledge that.

Nothing does more to help legitimize this reality than when men who’ve experienced such loss speak out, especially men in the public eye, who have a platform not all of us do. One such man is James Vanderbeek, the actor and former star of Dawson’s Creek.

Vanderbeek has 5 children with his wife, ranging from 9 years old to just one, and they were trying for another when they lost the baby. Late last year Vanderbeek took to his Instagram to discuss the pain of the loss, and to explain how and why he told his children about it.

 

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A post shared by James Van Der Beek (@vanderjames)

“One year ago today, I had to explain to my then 1, 3, 5, 7, and 9 year-old a late-term #pregnancyloss while @vanderkimberly was still in the hospital,” Van Der Beek wrote. “I’m not sure there’s any one way to do it, since every kid is so different – one bawled immediately, one had questions, one tried to make jokes, one tried to avoid by acting crazy.”

In the video he posted, he shows himself answering his daughter’s questions about their loss, which was the 5th miscarriage they’d suffered over the past nine years.

His wife, Kimberly, also posted about the loss on her IG.

It can be understated how devastating these losses are, for both men and women, nor how brave James and his wife Kimberly are for sharing their grief with the world.

Hopefully, their openness and honesty will help others feel less alone.

5-Yr-Old Uses Make-a-Wish Request To Help Hospitalized Kids Sleep Comfortably

5-year-old uses wish to buy comfortable sheets for hospitalized kids
(YouTube/FOX 2 St. Louis)

The Make-A-Wish Foundation has been granting wishes to critically ill children for over 40 years, creating lasting memories for families who truly need them. Most kids wish for experiences – visiting theme parks, meeting their favorite celebrities, about half of all Make-A-Wish requests even involve Disney in one way or another. When you present a kid with seemingly endless possibilities, the vast majority zero in on things they want for themselves – but 5-year-old Grayson Nunley is not your average Make-A-Wish recipient.

Grayson was recently hospitalized for nearly three weeks due to his battle with leukemia, but the quiet warrior isn’t one to complain. Fortunately, the 5-year-old is nearly finished with his weekly treatments and doctors are hopeful that he’ll be able to ring the “chemo bell” within the year signifying the end of his chemotherapy.

Grayson’s mom, Ann Nunley, was recently approached by the Make-A-Wish Foundation who extended an offer to her young son. Though Nunley previously believed wishes were reserved for terminally ill children, the life-changing foundation uses medical criteria to determine eligibility. Once Make-A-Wish confirmed Grayson was in fact eligible, Nunley explained the possibilities and asked the 5-year-old what he wanted to request.

A world full of possibilities in front of him, but Grayson knew exactly what he wanted almost immediately: he wanted to use his wish to make life more comfortable for other kids in the hospital. Rather than take a trip to Disney World or split a pizza with his favorite celebrity, Grayson chose to give cozy sheets to every kid in the hospital.

Likely recalling his own time in the clinical rooms, nearly three weeks of sleeping in the hospital-grade sheets, Grayson wanted to make sure the kids who aren’t yet lucky enough to go home have a more pleasant stay.

“He understands the wish could be for him. He knows and understands how important it is to give back,” Ann told FOX 8. “We’ve asked him a million times if this is what he wanted to do and that he’s happy and that’s what he wanted to do.”

Move Over Air Bud, Dog Jumps Into High School Track Meet and Wins

Dog Wins Track Meet
(YouTube/KSL News)

Air Bud flew so this track bud could run. A high school track meet got escalated to the next level when a dog ran onto the track and joined in a 4×200 meter relay. It happened during a high school track meet in Utah and in the final leg of the race, a dog comes out of nowhere to enter the fray.

And this dog doesn’t just run around aimlessly. This dog starts to BOOK. He soars down the track, catches the leader, and in a photo finish, beats out high schooler Gracie Laney to earn the major victory for canines everywhere. Just an incredible flex by this dog.

The dog even wins over the crowd, which begins to go crazy as she gains steam towards the end. Laney said she couldn’t believe she lost to a dog and started to run faster because she thought the dog was the runner behind her. Nope, instead, it was just Holly, the Goldendoodle who had gotten away from her owners so she could show the world what she was capable of.

“I honestly am just glad that we didn’t get hurt,” the human who *technically* won the race said. “It’s a fun experience.”

If this proves anything, it’s that high school sports are WAY more fun to watch when a dog is allowed to compete.

Parrot and Puppy Go Viral on Tik Tok Because Animal Friendships Rule

Parrot and Puppy Friends
(TikTok/TheParrotLady)

Sometimes you’re having the type of day where you just need to see animals doing stuff.  Whether it’s dogs delivering beers, or a special needs puppy finding a forever home,  or just the classic “Dad who didn’t want a pet falls in love with new pet” routine, pet content gets a lot of people through a lot of days.

And if Tik Tok is good for anything, it’s an extremely efficient delivery system for this feel-good content. To make things the internet will enjoy, a good starting formula is “anything, + a puppy.”  In this case, its’ a runaway hit, as the viral video of a parrot meeting a puppy and saying “I love you” has had nearly 40 million views on Tik Tok.

Idaho pet owner Wendy Albright made a Tik Tok for her parrot Sweet Pea and quickly found some traction. But it wasn’t until Sweet Pea met Albright’s black lab puppy (see?) that things really took off.

@theparrotlady🥺 SP Meets Puppy #puppy #puppytiktok #fyp #lab #cute #cockatoo #parrot #baby #love♬ original sound – The Parrot Lady

Tens of millions of views later, she’s continued to churn out that sweet animal friendship content. There’s the parrot and puppy together after it gets a name (Copper).

@theparrotladyReply to @ne0nskyy This brought everything into a name for me! Thank you! 💕💕 ##puppy ##parrot ##baby ##love ##fyp ##foryou ##foryoupage ##lab ##puppies♬ original sound – The Parrot Lady

 

We even get more of the original hit, with more “I love you”s.

@theparrotladySuch pure love ❤️❤️❤️ ##puppy ##parrot ##baby ##lab ##fyp ##dogsoftiktok ##puppytiktok ##cockatoo ##cute ##truelove ##foryoupage♬ original sound – The Parrot Lady

Let’s face it; before this is all over, Sweet Pea and Copper should probably have a buddy-sitcom on Disney+. And your kids are going to watch it. Every. Single. Day. But that’s OK, because cute animals never disappoint.

Albright told a local news station why she thinks the pet duo became a social media sensation. “In this time we live in, people saw that video and just loved the unadulterated love of two animals just caring about each other,” she said.

Stranger Things Season 4 Trailer Has Major Shining Vibes

Teaser for Stranger Things 4
(YouTube/Movie Trailers Source)

Finally, after a long delay, Stranger Things is coming back.

It has been nearly two years since season 3’s summer of Strange, and now that the world is opening up again, Netflix is getting ready to bring the show back. The last time we saw the kids from Hawkins, Indiana, they were getting split up, with Eleven moving out of town with the Byers family after Chief Hopper sacrificed his life (not quite) to save them, leaving boyfriend Mike and the rest of the gang behind.

Since then we’ve learned that Hopper is alive, somewhere in Russia, and that the show will leave Indiana, and the U.S. to track the fourth season’s storyline. We may delve into Hopper’s past, and judging by the new teaser, which brings back Eleven’s sinister “dad,” Matthew Modine, Eleven’s past as well. The season will also reportedly feature Robert “Freddy Kruger” Englund in an unknown role.

They’ve just released a new teaser trailer for the new season, and while the star of the Nightmare on Elm Street series may be a part of the cast, the teaser gives off major Shining vibes, showcasing what seems to be the hospital or lab where Eleven was “created.”

Season 4 won’t drop until 2022, and this intense trailer won’t make that wait any easier.

“Loki” Release Date Mischievously Moved Earlier

Loki Release Date Moved
(YouTube/Marvel Entertainment)

The God of Mischief strikes again. Loki star Tom Hiddleston made a “surprise” announcement on Marvel’s YouTube channel that the upcoming show will do something its predecessors, “WandaVision” and “The Falcon and Winter Soldier” never did; premier in the middle of the week.

The video started with your typical Marvel superhero montage. Think the emotional score, a series of superhero images, only to get quickly interrupted by Hiddleston, who claims Loki is always left out of the big montages. And, he says, he also acts heroically. And is charming, and cunning, and then, well, he decides to prove it.

“Why don’t I prove it?” he said. “Wednesdays are the new Fridays.”

Both of Marvel’s previous shows, WandaVision and Falcon and the Winter Soldier both premiered on Fridays. With a mid-week release, Loki has the chance to capture more of that “water cooler” hype. At least, that’s the hope from Disney execs. This isn’t *just* about Loki being mischievous, it’s part of a larger Disney+ experiment on release timing and what works best to get new content onto the screens of fans.

The idea with the original Friday releases was the shows could dominate the weekend and then the discussion would carry over much of the next week, in advance to the next episode dropping. We’ll get a different schedule this time, and we’ll see how it plays out for the hotly anticipated “Loki”.

“Loki” premiers on WEDNESDAY, June 9th on Disney+.

Hugh Jackman Enlists NYC Officer to Pressure Ryan Reynolds For Deadpool Cameo

NYC Parks Officer Pressures Ryan Reynolds
(Twitter/RealHughJackman)

Hugh Jackman really wants to collaborate with Ryan Reynolds on the next ‘Deadpool’ movie. Sure, the two have a long and storied history, consumed mostly by a tragic feud between the two that’s led to a lot of money for charity and some awesome personal jabs back and forth.

Jackman is ramping up his campaign to cameo in Deadpool 3, though, and this time he’s enlisted the help of a police officer in New York City. Jackman shared the “random” encounter with officer John Dobkowski in New York who ‘randomly’ had a pretty specific message for one Ryan Reynolds:

“Hey Ryan, you gotta get this guy in Deadpool 3, even if it’s for a 10-minute cameo. That would be awesome!” Jackman shared the video saying the man was doling out ‘incredibly smart career advice’ for Reynolds.

“That would be so cool, so great, it would blow the box office,” the man continued. Jackman then jumped into the background, with some more helpful coaching, saying “You can add, or I’ll ticket you!’”

The officer obliged, punctuating his request to Reynolds with an “Or I’ll ticket you!”

One thing is clear, Jackman wants to get in this dang movie. And who wouldn’t want a little Wolverine with their Deadpool? More importantly, getting Reynolds and Jackman back together on the big screen would be downright delightful.