Build a Survival Shelter





Introduction: Build a Survival Shelter

                                                                                      (Image by  emily_* via Flickr)

There are many different types of primitive survival shelters. The easiest of these to construct is known as a debris hut or a lean-to survival shelter.  This instructable shows you how to build such shelter.

This type of primitive survival shelter requires simple materials, which you can easily find in your surroundings such as dry leaves and pieces of wood. Note that constructing survival shelter is only essential when you are taking refuge in the wilderness.

Step 1: Construct Structure

                                                                       (Image by  Alderleaf Wilderness College via Flickr)

For construction, you first need to find a sturdy ridgepole, preferably one that is slightly taller than you. 

You then need to find a prop where you can securely rest one end of the ridgepole; this can be tree, boulder or stump. One end should be on the ground, while the other should be propped at a high angle, just about the height of your hip.

Once that is in place, you will then find smaller sticks to lean against the ridgepole. Place them close together and only leave a small space to squeeze into when you enter your new home. Make sure that your survival shelter is not too big, as it will be hard to keep warm. Fasten the sticks to the ridgepole using tree bark strips, shoe laces or any other material that can act as fastener.

Step 2: Add a Layer of Branches

The next step is to add a layer of branches that will help keep the debris in place.

Once that is done, the final step is to create insulation.
Use materials that are able to trap air. Pile on dry leaves, grass or whatever debris you find.  Pile as much debris as you can. It should be thick enough to prevent rain water from trickling inside.

Step 3: Do Some Finishing Touches

                                                                             (Image by WanderNeal via Flickr)

Do some finishing touches by adding small branches to keep the debris in place in case of strong winds.

Finally, add dry soft leaves or grass inside your primitive survival shelter. This will act as a bed, so pile a lot of debris. Once you have done that, wiggle inside and then add more debris if you feel there is still space to be covered.

The key point is to stay warm. Do not forget to cover your entrance.

Step 4: Useful Resources

You can find below links to useful resources and videos:

- My web site, full of information about survival:

- Survival techniques and skills:

- My facebook page:

- Video - Constructing a Debris Hut:   Part 1 - Part 2



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    Cool idea!