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The Survival Handbook

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"If you're roughing it, you're doing something wrong" says Raymond Mears, and in The Survival Handbook he shows you how, by using natural materials and traditional skills, you can be warm, dry and well fed when living in the outdoors.

"Don't challenge nature, challenge yourself" he suggests. Rather than pitting yourself against the elements, you are encouraged to understand and move in tune with nature, utilising, without destroying, the bounty of the countryside - "once you know the value of a plant or tree you will think twice before destroying it".

The Survival Handbook works on two levels. The modern outdoors man and backpacker will find it an invaluable aid to augmenting his backwoods experience as detailed, illustrated information is given about shelter building, fires and friction fire lighting, cooking and the plants that can be used, the collection of water in places where there is no obvious source, and finding your way in the absence of a map.

At a more advanced level and also of interest to craftspeople, are the illustrations and advice on making baskets and mats from reeds, string from plants, pots from clay, tools from stone and bone, clothes from hide; there is also a large section on tracking, trapping and fishing. The unique aspect of The Survival Handbook is the proliferation of the author's own photographs which are proof that everything he writes about comes from his own experience and works.

Oxford Illustrated Press, 1990


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