Introduction: Extreme Wilderness Bunker!

Picture of Extreme Wilderness Bunker!

Lost in the woods? No place to call home? Live near the wilderness? Just wanna have fun? It's time for the extreme survival bunker! It's kinda like owning your own little cave, except more awesome. It can be as big or little as you want it, and it's plenty easy to build (me and my little brother built it!) Besides who else you know has their own bunker? Lol none of YOUR know why? it's too extreme, for them! It's the call of the hardcore your hearing, this is the extreme survival bunker!

Step 1: What You'll Need

Ok, now onto what you'll need:

1. Twine
2. a Knife (for cutting twine, clearing small brush,etc...)
3. Lots of sticks and logs
4. Dead Leaves
5. and a Rake 
6. Hardcore builder (Booyah!)

That's all you'll need! See, easy! Keep going.

Step 2: Clear the Area

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Now get your rake, and clear the leaves and sticks from the building site. This is what you"ll be laying on so you will want to make it pretty nice and clear. 

Step 3: Gather Sticks

Picture of Gather Sticks

You'll want to gather a bunch of sticks into a big pile so your not constantly having to go back in the woods in search of more sticks.

Step 4: Get the Main Beams

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Now go find or cut your main beams, they'll need to be long and very strong so they can hold all of the weight of the rest of the structure. The two I chose were probably about 20 feet long, but however long is fine as long as you fit inside.

Step 5: Bury the Main Posts

Picture of Bury the Main Posts

Now you'll need to find two sticks about 4-5 feet tall for the main supports. Dig a hole about 6-10 inches deep, bury the end of the stick, and tamp the dirt in around the stick. Dig the holes as far apart from each other as wide as you want your door.

Step 6: Lash the Main Beams to the Main Supports

Picture of Lash the Main Beams to the Main Supports

Next hold the long beam at an angle to the main support and lash the two together with twine. Do it to both sides so they both look the same. You should have to triangles of wood that are parallel to each other. 

Step 7: Lash Sticks to the Main Beams

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Next your going to lash sticks perpendicular to the main beams.  This will be the roof. Do it all the way down the beams, lashing both sides of each stick to the beams.

Step 8: Side Supports

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I then added two side supports to the frame for extra stability. Just jam one end into the ground and lash the other to the main support with twine. Keep checking your hut, and comparing it to mine to make sure it's coming along right.

Step 9: Add the Sides

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Now add sticks to the side of the bunker, at the same angle as your side supports are. Place the sticks as densely together as possible, later you'll be throwing leaves over top of these side walls. Large cracks in side walls=large amount of leaves falling on your sleeping bag at night. The denser the better.

Step 10: Add the Leaves

Picture of Add the Leaves

Now use those leaves you raked out of your way early on to cover the shelter. You'll need lots more than just those leaves, but it's a start. Cover the top first, and then the sides. Use whatever good leafy debris you can find, we found these great little flower plants that worked great for the sides! Get at least a couple inches of leaves all over the bunker, once again the denser the better. If you expect rain it'll mean keeping dry and warm, or being cold and wet.

Step 11: Finished!

Picture of Finished!

Now your finished! You can go show off what you built to your friends, brag on facebook, sleep in a super cool bunker, or pat yourself on the back, cause you've just built yourself an extreme wilderness bunker. Booyah!


JohnY35 (author)2016-02-10

I have a great post on making a shelter in the woods on my website you can check out as well. It goes over quite a few different shelters you can make with and without gear. I am a wilderness survival expert so I have more of a primitive living slant.

lakimarie (author)2016-02-10

Making a shelter in the Woods is hard. But it is an adventure to lead a life in Wilderness. It is helpfull to learn survival skills and also carrying with some tools.

tschuld (author)2013-06-21

this isn't a bunker, this is a lean to

imakeitforu (author)2012-04-11

That's really cool!me and my brother build things like this all the time,the most recent is a perfect circle of little trees with 2-3 ft wide gaps.we mede a roof and some of the wall,he said he doesn't want to do it anymore,so I'm on my own.nice job with the structure!I'd love to see more of yours!

machoturtle (author)imakeitforu2012-04-11

sweet! post a pic when your done!

imakeitforu (author)machoturtle2012-05-19

I'm almost done,the roof caved in so i have to make it again!

MakerCL (author)2012-05-07

If You face the entrance to the north, There will more often depending where u are. If You face it to the east, when you wake up in the morning than you will have some good sun to warm u up

panzerfaust379 (author)2012-04-15

A good step to add, would be a platform to keep you off the ground. Away from criitters and water in bad weather

catfan63 (author)panzerfaust3792012-04-19

Also, we careful where you build your bunker... don't build it directly under a tree as large limbs (known as Widow Makers) can fall on your shelter and do some serious damage.

Thanks for the 'ible- looks like you all had a great time!

yep good input, keeping warm is really important. thanks!

sconner1 (author)machoturtle2012-04-17

And face the door away from the prevailing winds.

Also, you want to be sure that your entrance will not be facing towards flowing water such as might happen in a gully. You want it to be on an elevated surface and not in a depression. If possible you might want to line the bottom of your bunker with pine or cedar needles to cushion your floor.

sammyjo24 (author)2012-04-18

too awesome! I wish I had the natural ''know how'' for this kind of stuff!

kz1 (author)2012-04-18

A skill you might want to learn/try is making rope in the wilderness. Rope have more uses than one can imagnine and has played a very important roll in civilization's development. Learning about rope's history and how to make it is interesting and challenging! And then there's knots...really interesting stuff there too and lots of sites here and on YouTube that teach about those. Great job guys. Keep building and adding to those skill sets. Ya never know when they might come in handy!!

machoturtle (author)kz12012-04-18


panzerfaust379 (author)2012-04-15

Good job guys, just pile the leaves on thicker for more insulation & water proofing.

mcsper (author)panzerfaust3792012-04-17

if you have ferns use those, upside down, for even better waterproof roof.

machoturtle (author)mcsper2012-04-18

nice ok!

baronbrian (author)2012-04-17

If you haven't already found him, check out Tom Brown's wilderness survival books. He talks a lot about the kind of shelter you've built here. He calls it a debris shelter if I remember correctly. He also talks about a lot of other wilderness stuff and I think you'd enjoy the read. I'll bet your local library has copies of his many books and I know Amazon does as well.

machoturtle (author)baronbrian2012-04-17

Wow ok i'll check that out! Yeah actually the debris hut is my favorite shelter to build, i had to tear down the debris hut i had there before to make the new shelter! I'll put up some pics of it.

cqaigy (author)2012-04-17

Good job on the instructable and you nice shelter. Keep having fun out in the "sticks". :)

machoturtle (author)cqaigy2012-04-17

thx! have fun in the sticks everyday tracking people, building shelters, camping out, shooting guns love it!

georion (author)2012-04-15

a rake ?????

machoturtle (author)georion2012-04-15

yep or your hands to scoop up leaves.

Tuhua Tarakona (author)2012-04-15

Very nice!! I love all the comments, too! Comments like getting kids off the computers and game stations --- no doubt about that! Well done, MachoTurtle!! Five other siblings - you're just like us - 4 boys n 2 girls. They will have a blast working on stuff like this -- so share more things! I'm adding you to my favorites. ...big grin...

Alright thx! Big families are the best! Yep, will keep posting actually started work on another instructable today! :)

knoxtenor (author)2012-04-15

Nice! Cool in the summer, warm in the winter. The more insulation the better.

Would thing I would suggest from personal experience: Make sure that your supporting poles and trusses are the largest, sturdiest wood on the entire project. (A previous commenter mentioned using two trees--kudos.) I recall a Scouting camporee where my patrol, for our project, built a lashed tower approx. 12 ft high. On one cross spar, we used a smaller, "deader" piece of wood. The piece held up okay until the last day, when we wanted to get the entire troop on the tower for a photograph. Oops! Thankfully, no one was hurt worse than a few bumps and scrapes. We all learned a valuable lesson on materials testing and engineering design that day.

Of course, in a survival situation, the quality and workmanship of any shelter is going to be based on expediency (materials available), time (length of stay), and environmental conditions (keep out predators, stand up to high winds, etc.).

machoturtle (author)knoxtenor2012-04-15

man...wouldn't want that happening, thanks for the input!

cathleenoconnor (author)2012-04-15

Nice shelter and great instructions! Thanks!

klazaridis (author)2012-04-15

Very cool men!I like it!It's a very good idea !

arrtt (author)2012-04-13

Very nice!! Good idea!

machoturtle (author)arrtt2012-04-15


wingnuts (author)2012-04-15

Nicely done. Are you a Scout?

machoturtle (author)wingnuts2012-04-15

no...i just love the outdoors, fishing, hunting, hiking all that good stuff!

jonsg (author)2012-04-15

Great demo - but a word of advice: make sure you understand where the prevailing wind comes from, and set the shelter's back against it. Use the angles of the trees locally (they'll lean away from the prevailing wind) to judge that. The last thing you want - even if you aren't thinking about what a shelter full of fire will do - is to build a wind trap!

One other thing: if you're in the wilds unprepared, you may not have twine available. Obviously, you may have toggle cords from your clothing or backpacks, or similar, but that's only going to get you so far, and you don't want to use them except as a last resort. You can use young, thin, whippy tree roots as cordage - find them close to the surface - and also make cordage out of fresh bracken or nettle stems...but that's a faff, so it's worth also using a bit of cunning. The trunks and big branches you use for the front supports and lean-to beams will probably have branches coming off them. Don't cut the branches off too close to the stems, and you can use the branch-points as extra supports for the cross-members, saving on cordage.

machoturtle (author)jonsg2012-04-15

yep good advice thanks!

Ob1zenobi (author)2012-04-15

Great job! Two things that helped us in a similar shelter we built on a Scout outing on a fine day that turned into a very rainstormy night: Keep in mind the direction of prevailing wind for the opening.
Also you can put a poncho under the roof leaves ( thin sheet plastic is nice to have along of course if you aren't a purist.) & a poncho liner for the floor over dry grass etc as noted for ground insulation. The funny thing was, we were on a hike 25 miles out & three of us built a fine shelter- ours was more of a roofed deal with log & boulder supports/ semi walls- but we built it for the three of us since the others could not be bothered- until it started pouring that night & about 8 or 9 took shelter! (This was in the days before satellite weather forecasts) I remember sleeping next to where the edge of the poncho dripped all night near my face. Ah Boy Scouts! Good times, builds character. Persevere & Be Prepared.

machoturtle (author)Ob1zenobi2012-04-15

sounds like quite the adventure! thanks for the tips

TSC (author)2012-04-11

Thats pretty awsome me and my brother built something like this but it was under ground but when we grew it got kind of small under there so I'm thinking about building other one. Great job!

machoturtle (author)TSC2012-04-11

awesome! underground shelters are the best i just camped out in one i made last night! i just did the finishing touch this afternoon maybe i'll post a pic

TSC (author)machoturtle2012-04-12


Lavon93 (author)2012-04-11

Great Job!
I need to get the kids off the PS3 and computers!
I remember 4-5 guys from the neighborhood and myself building forts, log cabins and just about anything we could think of! Great times. Good to see siblings spending some quality time together!

machoturtle (author)Lavon932012-04-11

ya me and my siblings (ihave five other) have always been really close! :)

thematthatter (author)2012-04-11

Thats a pretty cool shelter. you can put a fire near the front (about 10 feet out) of it and the heat will radiate inside and keep you warm during the winter.

Kozz (author)thematthatter2012-04-11

When in Boy Scouts, we frequently built lean-to's like this, although the highest horizontal member was typically lashed between two trees. We found that evergreen branches (spruce, balsam) made for excellent coverage and insulation over the framework.

As for the fire, we could keep the fire closer (within 5ft or so) as long as it wasn't too big. But on the opposite side of the fire we'd put in two parallel stakes about 1ft apart and each 2ft high, having them lean away from the fire at perhaps a 65 or 70 degree angle, and a number of green logs. This would serve as a reflector for the heat, but the greenness of the logs would prevent them from burning very well, so they'd last as a good reflector for a long time. I remember sitting there in nothing but long underwear and cooking a pizza in the dead of winter. :)

If you think you're going to spend the night, don't overlook insulating the floor with plenty of dry grasses, straw, or leaves. A cold and moist floor will really drain your body heat!

good idea! i'll have to try that next time i sleep out there.

ZeroSight (author)2012-04-10

awesome work. looks awesome. +1 follower. : )

OldShotgunYoungShooter (author)2012-04-10

Ive built an underground bunker, and I just have to say its barely cooler than this.

lol me and my bro actually went out and finished an underground bunker we started a few moths ago, it's definitely cooler than this first one!

burnerjack01 (author)2012-04-10

Whe I was young we made lean to's and then graduated to "underground forts". These thing were not " a hole in the ground", no far from it! More like rabbit warrens. My father was quite concerned about our safety until he saw our greatest "installation". he was quite impressed with our shoring and truss work.
Kept us quite busy and out of trouble for literally years! Kids need adventure, with a twinge of danger. Back to the 'ble... Nice job! Nothing can substitute the sense of triumph and satisfaction that comes from something like this. True character development, not to mention "wicked fun!" as they say in Boston!

About This Instructable




Bio: A country on forty acres, shoot guns, hike, hunt, fish, play soccer, and more!
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