So far outside the box you can't even see the box from here.
Follow by Email
Friday, March 8, 2013
Masters of their environment
Often I think back to the Native Americans who used to roam the North Country. They were masters of their environment. Take a small village of natives. They could be dropped naked in the wilderness and before long they'd have food, shelter, and clothing. It's not the tools on a person's back that matters but the knowledge between their ears.
I've always been a fan of canoes. Modern canoes can be made of plastic, yet still trace their inspiration and even their lines back to native boats. It's the perfect boat for the rivers and lakes. A good canoe was transportation, and also critical for fishing and hunting.
A canoe can be carried from one body of water to the next. What if the waterways were very far apart? No problem. They'd abandon their canoe and build another one when they needed it. I've built canoes, but not like them. They constructed their boats using all native materials, with few tools, working outside, and they built them fast. My canoes don't paddle any better than theirs did.
Few modern humans have the old wilderness skills. To be fair, for most moderns it can only be a hobby. For the natives it was their life. Even so, learning a few practical skills can be a life saver. We don't have to be able to recreate a functioning native village. Being able to acquire the basics, food, shelter, and water from the environment is good enough. It doesn't have to be pretty.
We can get a huge boost up the survival ladder with just a few modern tools: good steel knife, an ax, a fire steel, and a waterproof tarp are big technological jumps above native equivalents. Acquire the skills to use them to their full advantage and you've got something.
I live in an area of NH known as the Great North Woods. I'm in my dome-i-cile out in the county with my lovely wife and a varying number of family and friends
-part red neck, part hippie but all country. Experimenting and enjoying the adventure of life.