10 COMMANDMENTS OF SURVIVAL IN THE DESERT

General Palm Springs area.

10 COMMANDMENTS OF SURVIVAL IN THE DESERT

Postby Lcpl Hughes » Thu Aug 19, 2010 8:43 pm

So, at work today..I was talking to a friend, who is also a former Marine and I was telling him about the Marine that had to be rescued on Skyline..he definitely agreed on the bravado part and said that he was given a card back in 1995 when he went on some exercises out in 29 palms..the card was the 10 commandments of survival in the desert...haha, he has been carrying it with him for 15 years, just in case..I probably received one of these cards at one time, but most probably lost it the first day I got it..I made a copy of it, just to have but thought I would post it here, never know, it might have something you didnt know..of course, some of it does not apply..
Also, I was thinking about these people that have had to be rescued..if they wouldn't of had cell phone reception..pretty much all of them would be dead..these helo rescues sure are convenient :roll:

TEN COMMANDMENTS OF SURVIVAL IN THE DESERT WHEN LOST OR STRANDED

1. HOLD ON TO A SURVIVAL ATTITUDE. Your most valuable asset in any life-threatening situation is a positive mental attitude. If you aren’t certain you can live, you will die.
2. STAY WHERE YOU ARE AND STAY CALM. If you are driving a vehicle, remain with it. Relocate only to reach safety and water.
3. MOVE ONLY WHEN ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY AND ONLY AT NIGHT. If your position is unendurable, change your location during the cooler night hours. Move only when you know you can get there safely by doing the following:
a. Leave a clear trail with notes and directional signs.
b. On the note, give your name, date, time, direction, and reason you are going.
c. Proceed in a specific direction; change your line of movement only after you have left a sign or marker.
d. Go slowly and carefully-beware of overexertion.
4. CONSERVE YOUR SWEAT, NOT YOUR WATER. Rest by day; work on shelter and signals during cool of evening/morning. DRINK as often as you need water. Rub your body with urine and other liquids to keep cool.
5. PROTECT YOUR BODY. When in the sun and heat remember to:
a. Keep your clothes on. Loosen, but do not remove them.
b. Keep your boots/shoes and headgear on.
c. Relax in deep shade, keeping your eyes protected from glare.
d. If in the open with no shade nearby, use anything available to make shade.
6. MAKE A FUSS WHEN YOU HEAR OR SEE OTHERS NEARBY.
a. Signal by any means at hand. Use a shaving mirror to reflect the sun. Wave a brightly colored item.
b. Make marks in the sand or lay out rocks large enough to be seen from the air: SOS or HELP.
c. Start Fire-smoke in the daytime and flame at night.
d. Get involved in your rescue but conserve your body water.
7. DO NOT EAT ANYTHING.
a. All food is water demanding. Water is drawn out of your system to process, digest, and eliminate what you eat.
b. No salt or salt tabs-they will dehydrate you.
8. KEEP YOUR MOUTH CLOSED. Breathe through your nose to minimize evaporative water loss.
9. THINK LIKE A SEARCHER. Do the things that will make it easier for your rescuers to help you.
a. Leave a clear trail with notes and directional signs.
b. On the note, give your name, day, time, direction, and reason you are going.
c. Have a goal in mind-go in one direction with care. AVOID INJURY.
10. USE YOUR HEAD, NOT YOUR SWEAT; DRINK THE WATER YOU HAVE. Never ration water! Drink what you have as you need it. Discipline is essential to survive.
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Postby Florian » Thu Aug 19, 2010 8:57 pm

That's a really good list! I might even print and put a copy in my pack.

-Florian
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Postby bluerail » Thu Aug 19, 2010 10:21 pm

Yea I like it too....just really hope I don't ever get into a situation where I would need to use any of it. I am such a chicken when it comes to getting screwed out there.
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Postby Hikin_Jim » Thu Aug 19, 2010 10:32 pm

bluerail wrote: I am such a chicken when it comes to getting screwed out there.
I think chickens ususally get skewered rather than screwed, but, hey, whatever you're into is fine, Steve. :lol:

Yeah looks pretty good on those 10 rules. There are three corollaries to those rules:
1. Bring water.
2. Nope, not enough. Bring more water.
3. Still not enough. Bring even more water than that.

HJ
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Postby zippetydude » Fri Aug 20, 2010 10:26 am

Interesting. Most of it makes sense, but I would actually disagree with 5b and 10.

Keep my boots on?!? And headgear? The hotter my body gets internally (boots and especially headgear are notorious for increasing core temperature), the more sweat it will put out to compensate. I want to do as much as I can to feel cool without letting the sun hit my skin directly.How about just socks on my feet and maybe a hat perched lightly above my head, maybe wedged in a bush?

For number 10, it's mostly sensible, but if you have significant water, you should ration it to the point at least where you're peeing infrequently. If you're gulping down your water and your pee is clear, you're squandering the most valuable resource you have.

On the flip side, I think the advice about not eating is especially true. Not only does eating require water, but I've heard that fasting actually causes the muscles to release water into the blood stream. This could be a hidden source of water that I would never have thought about. Ellen, if you read this, is that true about the muscles releasing water? Is that why people pee up a storm when they go on those low carb diets?

Anyway, thanks lcpl (lieutenant corporal, right?!) for an interesting post.

z
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Postby Hikin_Jim » Mon Aug 23, 2010 9:50 pm

zippetydude wrote:Interesting. Most of it makes sense, but I would actually disagree with 5b and 10.

Keep my boots on?!? And headgear? The hotter my body gets internally (boots and especially headgear are notorious for increasing core temperature), the more sweat it will put out to compensate. I want to do as much as I can to feel cool without letting the sun hit my skin directly.How about just socks on my feet and maybe a hat perched lightly above my head, maybe wedged in a bush?

For number 10, it's mostly sensible, but if you have significant water, you should ration it to the point at least where you're peeing infrequently. If you're gulping down your water and your pee is clear, you're squandering the most valuable resource you have.

On the flip side, I think the advice about not eating is especially true. Not only does eating require water, but I've heard that fasting actually causes the muscles to release water into the blood stream. This could be a hidden source of water that I would never have thought about. Ellen, if you read this, is that true about the muscles releasing water? Is that why people pee up a storm when they go on those low carb diets?

Anyway, thanks lcpl (lieutenant corporal, right?!) for an interesting post.

z
Stan,

I think the idea with headgear and boots is that you want to protect your feet and head and in general you want to keep them on you. If you're in the shade, by all means take them off if it's safe. The other issue is dehydration. Exposed skin will lose water faster. If you've got plenty of water, no big deal, but if you're short of water, it's better to stay covered. Ever seen what arabs traditionally wear? There is a reason for their garb.

I'd agree with you that you shouldn't squander your water, and I agree with your criteria (don't pee clear), but "drink it if you got it" is pretty standard survival advice. From what I've read, they've found people that succumbed to heat and dehydration, but still had water with them. Hence, "drink what you need."

HJ

P.S. Dunno if you were serious or not, but lcpl stands for Lance Corporal, a rank that exists only in the Marine Corps. Lcpl is is the equivalent of Private First Class in the Army, Airman First Class in the Air Force, and Seaman in the Navy. Lcpl is the rank immediately below Corporal.
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Water

Postby Nick-SJM » Tue Aug 24, 2010 6:40 am

HIKIN_JIM - I agree with you. Obviously if a person has an abundance of water - drink up. If water is limited the question of when to drink is critical. The first thing that happens when a person becomes dehydrated is that the brain becomes impacted from a lack of water. This results in an altered mental status. That altered mental status will cause the subject to start doing some really stupid things, like finishing all of the water. There is no end to the other stupid things that the subject might do. Best to drink what is needed to keep alert and making good decisions.
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What about certain fruits?

Postby Snowhiker » Wed Aug 25, 2010 3:09 pm

In regards to #7: DO NOT EAT ANYTHING.

I always take way more water than I need, but.....what if I lose my water and I only have one or two large juicy oranges. Eat them or not?
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Re: What about certain fruits?

Postby Florian » Wed Aug 25, 2010 3:40 pm

Snowhiker wrote:what if I lose my water and I only have one or two large juicy oranges. Eat them or not?

What if all you have left is a watermelon?

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Re: What about certain fruits?

Postby Hikin_Jim » Wed Aug 25, 2010 4:54 pm

Snowhiker wrote:In regards to #7: DO NOT EAT ANYTHING.

I always take way more water than I need, but.....what if I lose my water and I only have one or two large juicy oranges. Eat them or not?
:lol: Eat them of course.

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