When it comes to survival and doing it right, one of the most important skills you can have is knowing how to find and choose the best site for your camp. Simply having a nice flat area is not good enough. You need to think about a range of factors first.
One of the most important things will be elevation so you are away from areas that might be affected by a flash flood. Setting up your campsite in a valley or a gulley is a bad idea for this very reason. If you are near a lake, you do not want to be too close to the water’s edge either. However, you still want to be close enough to running water that it is not a chore to get to it.
Always look for any potential natural dangers that could cause a problem for you. Do not set your camp up on an animal trail, for example. You do not need to have a wandering bear decide to come by and say hello in the middle of the night. Being close to a good source of dry wood for your fires is also nice. If you are fortunate enough to be near rock formations and rock walls, you can use those to help shelter you from the elements. Rock walls can do a decent job of reflecting the heat from your fire, as well.
Please keep in mind that there are certain situations where you may need to set up your shelter in areas that would otherwise be a bad idea. In the worst-case scenario, where you are fleeing from people who would want to do you harm, you should find ways to conceal your camp.
Whenever you are out and hiking through the backwoods, keep an eye out for spots that would make a nice campsite. It doesn’t mean you will ever actually camp there. Rather, you are training your eye to find these ideal locations.
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