Highlights from The Survival Handbook by Bill Merrill (New York: Winchester Press, 1972)
- Building a fire near a rock slab will magnify the amount of heat generated - a good idea for cold days.
- If you use the flint & steel method for starting a fire, the tinder must be very dry.
- Testing food: Test a small amount of food first. Don't swallow. Chew it, then spit it out. See if there's any effect on your mouth or tongue. If not, eat a small portion and see if you get a reaction. If not, eat a bigger portion. It's probably safe if no illness occurs in 6 to 8 hours. If you start to get sick, drink lots of water, then stick your finger down your throat and vomit.
- You can eat cambium (the inner bark of trees).
- The best time to hunt is very early in the morning, or toward dusk. Be downwind from the animal so it can't smell you.
- Roast grasshoppers and lizards aren't bad to eat. For grasshoppers, roast first then break off the wings and legs. For lizards, remove the head.
- An ax is crucial. In cold weather, warm the blade first so it doesn't chip. Knots in wood can chip an ax - avoid knots.
- In lightning, get into heavy timber, but away from single tall trees.
- Don't get wet in cold weather - not even from perspiration. Slow down if necessary.
- Anyone who walks away from a plane crash is probably in a state of shock, so treat for shock first.
Offered by Mike.