Bushcraft has a long history in North America where people of the northlands relied on bush skills to survive the brutal north country winters. What is bushcraft? The definition is – “skill in anything pertaining to bush country.” These are the survival skills that came about from wilderness living in the Boreal forests.
What is bushcraft? The definition is - "skill in anything pertaining to bush country."
The North American Fur Trade was a booming economy and brought many to the northlands. Bush skills were required to work and live in these extreme conditions.
For the immigrants learning to survive in the Boreal forests of the world was borrowed from Indigenous peoples all across north America including the Inuit, Cree, and the Sami people of northern Europe and Asia.
The Great Alaska Gold Rush
Beginning in 1869 Alaska Klondike Gold Rush adventurers hopeful to hit it big in the Gold Fields came woefully unprepared. And many died.
One ton of Supplies was required for each person passing through Canada on their way to the Alaska goldfields. This huge amount of supplies was designed to keep the stampeders from starving to death. The amount of survival gear stampeders were required to haul up the Chilkoot trail boggles the mind!
Living in the extreme and the Bushcraft skills you need
Late spring and summer are the good times in bush country. The exception being biting flies and mosquitoes which are everywhere during the fair months of summer.
Biting insects of the Bush
One of the first rules to know when traveling the Bush country during summer is do not underestimate biting insects. They can create chaos and panic to the uninitiated.
But fortunately there are simple ways to reduce or prevent from being bitten and prevent skin infection and disease.
Clothing is your first defense against biting insects
When traveling in bush country clothing is your first line of protection from the elements. Which include vast numbers of biting insects like black flies, deer flies, mosquitoes, midges, ticks, and no-see-um's.
Recommended clothing for traveling in the Bush
- wide brimmed hat also sheds rain and protects ears from sunburn.
- mosquito net that covers your hat, face, neck, and long enough you can tuck it into your jacket or shirt.
- long sleeved zipper or button jacket with high collar to help protect the back of the neck and ears.
- full legged pants with cargo pockets and leather belt.
- leather gloves.
- above the ankle boots.
One of the most important skills to learn to survive in the bush is Fire Craft. It is critical to have the skill to make a warming fire day or night. Regardless of weather and temperature. Fire making is a skill you must master in wilderness survival. Fire Craft is the number one (1) most necessary bushcraft skill to master in the northern forests.
To make do in the north country survival and bushcraft skills must be studied and learned. You must dress properly, have the skill to build a fire under all weather conditions, and follow the ancient wisdom of living nature's balance If you are to survive.