Becoming A Wilderness Explorers: What YOU Need To Know
Disney/Pixar's newest animated adventure, UP, follows the uplifting tale of 78-year-old balloon salesman Carl Fredricksen, who finally fulfills his lifelong dream of a great adventure when he ties thousands of balloons to his house and flies away to the wilds of South America. But all too late he discovers that his biggest nightmare has come along on the trip: an always willing to help, overly optimistic 8-year-old Wilderness Explorer named Russell.
Not all of us may get the amazing opportunity to travel to South America and explore its strange, exotic and surprising characters, like Carl and Russell do in UP, but like Russell, you too can be a ‘Wilderness Explorer', or, as an adult be part of such an organisation.
The idea behind UP
- Build a Fire
This is one of the most important tasks when dealing with survival in the wilderness. A fire should be built in a sandy or rocky area or near a supply of sand and water so as to avoid forest fires. The most common mistakes made by those attempting to build a fire are; choosing poor tinder, failing to shield precious matches from the wind and smothering the flames with too-large pieces of fuel. The four most important factors when starting a fire are spark - tinder - fuel - oxygen. To create a spark you can use matches, a cigarette lighter, flint against steel, electric spark from a battery, or sun rays through a magnifying glass.
- Build a Shelter
A small shelter which is insulated from the bottom up, protected from wind and snow and contains a fire, is extremely important for wilderness survival. Before building your shelter, be sure that the surrounding area provides materials needed to build a good fire, a good water source and shelter from the wind. If you don't know how to build a shelter, natural ones can be used, such as caves and overhanging cliffs or a pit under a fallen tree which can be further enlarged.
It is important that your clothes provide warmth and offer protection from the elements. Layers of light, natural fibers are best. Hats are also good, as they offer protection from both the heat and cold. Waterproof outer layers are a necessity.
Wilderness explorer equipment should be easily manageable and promote survival in any situation. Items to carry in your pockets could include a fire starter, waterproof matches and/or lighter, pocket knife, goggles, compass, small first-aid kit and some sort of foodstuff. For a more modern touch, a GPS device may also be a good idea!
Adventure here I come!
As Russell would say – The wilderness must be explored!