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KELLEY -Basic Survival Skills You Can Practice in Your Own Backyard

Whether you’re a survival rookie or you could use a refresh, it’s important to practice your skills now before you find yourself in an emergency situation. Regularly practicing and building upon your skills now can mean survival later.

The good news? You can practice these in your own backyard.

1.Shelter. Find what works best for you. Do you have an awesome tent that you can set up and tear down easily? Is it reliable in any weather conditions? Great! If not, you may want to experiment with other items: tarps, ponchos, parachutes, debris; make sure you can find shelter in any type of condition. Time yourself to ensure it won’t take too long, and keep practicing until you feel confident that you could survive a night in your shelter.

2.Food Practice hitting targets in your backyard with a bow and arrow, blade, or makeshift weapons (we don’t recommend hunting your neighbor’s cats, so a standing target will do). Also, brush up on general foliage knowledge in the area so you know you’re not eating anything poisonous.

3.Heat. Even if you’re a beginner, you can probably start a fire on a sunny day. But can you start one if the wind is blowing? What if it’s raining? Practice starting a fire in every weather condition so you know exactly what to expect and how to ensure your fire will stand.

4.Cooking. You may not be able to make a full-course meal in your backyard, but you can certainly practice making the essentials. Bring some water to a boil and get familiar cooking different dishes this way. Also, work on cutting down on supplies so you can carry very few items with you.

5.Water Practice purifying your water -- whether that’s through boiling or through a water purification system. Find what works best for you and what you’ll be able to recreate in the wilderness.

The time to master your survival skills is never when you’re forced into a survival situation; the time is now. How do you keep your skills sharp?

Bonus: Our top picks to help you sharpen your skills: Battlbox Single Man Tent Leatherman OHT Multitool Thompson Snares Survival Kit