Imagine you find yourself alone in the middle of nowhere... Actually, you find that you are alone in the deciduous forest. You can see, between the tree leaves, that night is approaching, and with the darkness comes many an uncertainty. The night brings out the cold, bugs, and possibly rain. You use your watch to estimate that there is about one to two hours of light left.
Then, you remember reading my Instructable, and you brave the cold night in this lean-to shelter, and you live to fight another day.
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Step 1: Finding a Spot to Spend the Night
Look for an area with either:
* two saplings that are about 6-10 feet from one another
* an area between large trees that is relatively flat. Once there, dig two holes about 12+ inches into the ground and insert two sturdy branches into the holes.
Clear the ground below the support beams until you hit dirt. This will deter bugs that live in the fallen debris from coming into the shelter and biting you.
Step 2: Making the Support Beam
Pick a sturdy branch to attach to both sides of the sticks. Tie any knot you know to secure the branch to the sapling. Make sure you TEST it before preceding! Apply to both sides.
Step 3: Creating the Angle for the Roof
Find some fallen sticks and wood in the nearby area. (Make sure they aren't completely rotten so then can hold some weight and do not contain any bugs.)
These sticks should be approx 6-7 feet long in order to create an angle on the shelter suitable for deterring rain and the elements.
Now lie the sticks, one by one, up against the main support beam you previously secured. Make them have the same slope. Apply until the entire area between the two saplings is covered. Next, layer another set of branches atop of the first set. Repeat until you have made at least 5 layers.
Step 4: Waterproofing and Insulating
Now, gather as many leaved branches as you can. Evergreen branches work especially well if they are around.
Lay them atop of your structure first horizontally, then vertically. Repeat until the roof is an airy foot "thick".
Now layer the ground with the same leaves, dead/alive evergreen branches, or near-by grasses. This will prevent the loss of heat through the ground.
On the other side of your shelter, opposite to the roof, is where you can build a fire using many different techniques.
This lean-to shelter will withstand the cold nights that you will experience. Please comment below with recommendations and opinions!
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