fbpx

Jungle Survival, Living Off the Jungle, Wild Foods, and Jungle Bushcraft

Numerous SIGMA 3 cadre have just returned from a jungle survival trip deep in the Nicaraguan jungles and have gained an awesome sense of empowerment knowing how well they can live in the jungle with a few tools. This October 2015 we set out on a jungle survival trip to practice bushcraft with the Rama Indians in the Southeastern section of Nicaragua, near the little town of San Juan Del Norte. This is the last stop when traveling into the jungle where there is nothing but indian settlements along the river.
We took an epic multi-day trip up the Indian river to get us into the deepest jungles we could find. We wanted to see what the jungle really had to offer in the way of food and we weren’t let down. These jungles are literally a treasure trove of food, resources, fish, wild meat, and the best diversity of wild plants anywhere! You can literally eat like a king in these jungles and have want for nothing. Jungle survival can be so easy with the right skills and few tools.

Shelter

The jungle trees provide such great leaves for providing thatched roofs that with the right knowledge you can thatch a roof that will withstand hurricane level rains. The royal palm is so amazing to work with and a roof can be thatched quickly that is totally waterproof. There is no doubt that this is one of the easiest places on the planet to survive. It’s really refreshing to enjoy a place with so many resources for bushcrafting that it makes life simple. The vines of the jungle are a wonder to behold because they are like free rope everywhere you look. Vines of all sizes and strengths can be found in overwhelming abundance. These vines are strong enough to lash any shelter and build almost anything you can imagine. The abundance of them is so staggering that you almost don’t even need to bring much cordage with you.

We built several types of jungle survival shelters during our time in the jungle and by far my best learning experience was helping construct this traditional hut. The uses of Royal palm are almost to many to mention and it makes the most wonderful thatched roofs. It is what all the homes are thatched with to include the Rio Indio lodge and you would be surprised at how well a thin layer of palms can repel water.

We also thatched with other palm types like the Sweeta palm which is abundant all over the jungle. This type of palm leaves proved to be extremely easy to use as well because of the way we thatched them. These leaves easily made a waterproof shelter in very little time at all. You can complete shelters in literally a 1/3 of the time you can most typical survival shelters in the United States. It really made life easy to have these plants everywhere you look so you could just whip up a jungle survival shelter at will.
where most of the resources are located.

Water

There was no lack of water in the jungle that is for sure but it can be difficult to find in certain places. It’s always best to stay close to the rivers but sometimes overland travel doesn’t allow that. Best plan of attack for water procurement is to just have a good sawyer filter or two. We used a camp sized gravity filter for most of our water needs for the group and it worked well for what we needed. If primitive skills is all you have then you’ll have to find a patch of bamboo to make a container and boil some water up. Always stay close to the rivers because they are the highways of the river and where most of the resources are located.

Fire

Most people think the jungle is a very difficult place to get fire in the jungle and it can be if you don’t have some basic skills. The jungle has so many so woods that if dry are fantastic fire starting materials. These soft river woods are perfect for friction fire kits but it can be difficult to find a dry piece to use immediately for bow drill. The great thing about the jungle survival is there is palm everywhere and dry palm can almost always be had for quick cooking fires. Long burning fires are not needed down there and it is to difficult to burn them indefinitely anyway. Usually the only thing you need fire for is cooking and boiling water. A lot of people think that smoke will keep away bugs but it will only knock down the number of them minimally at best. Using fire is not a great method for dealing with bugs and you shouldn’t depend on the ability to repel mosquitoes naturally as your only method for dealing with them. Rubbing mud on your body also doesn’t help much in reducing bug bites.

Food

Food was by far the easiest thing to get in the jungle and with some good survival skills you can actually get fat in the jungle. This is one of the few places on the planet where you could go totally vegetarian for months if needed. Very few places on the planet can boast this kind of food diversity. The easiest thing to get besides wild edibles is definitely fish because they are in great abundance in any riparian area you find.

While down there we ate all types of fish to include: Snook, Rainbow Bass, Brim, and much more! The preferred method for cooking it was to de-scale it then make small cuts in the flesh all up and down the fish. Then we would season it and either grill it or wrap it in palm leaves and steam it. The snook was by far the best fish I have ever eaten in my life and I’ve been fishing since I was 3 years old.

There is also a bounty of red meat to be had and we had not problem getting large rodents like the Agouti. The Agouti is like a mix between a giant rabbit and a large rat; the meat tastes similar to steak with a chicken like texture. These rodents and many others are in great abundance all over the jungle.

Tools

Really the only modern equipment you need in the jungle is a good machete, tarp, mosquito netting, water container, and fire tool. But you can survive easily with nothing more than a machete if you have good bushcraft skills. What surprised me in the jungle was just how soft the wood was and how even a dull machete will quickly fly through large trees. This is an environment where you truly can walk into with just a blade and survive like a king.

The single most important luxury jungle survival tool I took with me was definitely my Warbonnet Blackbird XLC. We had numerous people with Clark hammocks while there and they are the most expensive hammock system you can get. They were all jealous of my Warbonnet hammock because it is much larger, more comfortable, and has way better bug protection. I stayed in the Clark hammock just to try it out for awhile and it was so small it felt like a coffin. I personally do not like them at all and all the guys that tried our Warbonnets now own them lol. A lot of the guys using Clark hammocks got bite up on there back by mosquitos because it is only one layer, while the Warbonnet is a double layered bottom that prevents bug bites. I spent a lot of time in my hammock at night because it gets dark there about 5:30 pm and everyone goes to bed early during the rainy season. So being comfortable in miserable conditions was a life saver! Never got wet or bug bite once over a 2 week periods in some tough jungle inside my Warbonnet Hammock system. We have more reviews of using it doing jungle survival coming soon!

Where can I get a Warbonnet Hammock? Click Here!

Jungle Tarp Making

Probably the most amazing piece of equipment I saw while in the jungle was a homemade tarp. It was simply a bed sheet that had been coated with the latex of the rubber tree and this substance turned the sheet into a totally waterproof tarp. It was amazing how they had a process to make waterproof tarps as good as our modern equivalent and they did it almost completely primitively.

Dangers

The jungle may be a haven for bushcraft resources but it is definitely a very dangerous place to survive. The biggest jungle survival danger is by far and away the wild hogs and the monster herds they roam in. These herds of hogs will roam in numbers of excess of a thousand animals and they are very aggressive. These aren’t the large hogs like we have in the United States, they are a smaller Peccary sized hog that usually won’t get over 100 lbs. Don’t let the size fool you though because what they lack in size they make up for in numbers.

One of the Rama indians told us a story about how he was hog hunting and witness a full sized jaguar get attacked and completely eaten by hogs. The jaguar killed 14 hogs right before his eyes but they eventually overwhelmed the jaguar. The same Rama guide also told us a story of how he was attacked and his leg mauled by a large hog. These animals are not to be trifled with and when you see them it is time to start climbing a tree. Don’t wait for them to get aggressive, you start climbing as soon as you see them. They also have this crazy technique to get you out of the tree once your in it that you need to be aware of. The hogs will gather in mass under the tree and begin to urinate everywhere. This causes massive amounts of ammonia to filter up into the tree tops and will cause you to pass out. They use this technique when hunting other animals that run into the trees and it is very effective. When hundreds of hogs pee in the same spot, you need to be tied to the tree in case you pass out.

Other animals to worry about are the man eating crocodiles, bullet ants, army ants, numerous poisonous snakes, mosquitoes, and poison frogs. Even though there is a lot of animals that can kill you in the jungle, its a great place to survive!

Conclusion:

This was the absolute best trip of all the participants lives and the adventure factor can’t really be rivaled anywhere else. You can catch epic sized fish, explore remote jungles, live off the land like kings, and bask in the beauty that is the jungle. Jungle survival isn’t hard with the right guide and some basic training. If you want some real adventure in your life for a reasonable price. We can book custom trips for you anytime of the year. If your interested then just click below!

FOR MORE INFO ON JUNGLE SURVIVAL ADVENTURES!

 

 

Many of our students have been begging us for the blades we have been demoing at classes for the last year but none were available outside of our prototypes. For over a year now in numerous 40 day survival instructor courses we have been testing this blade in the field. After a year of assessment in our courses and personal survival trips worldwide, we are proud to announce we are finally ready to release the first of a two blade survival knife system.

We loved the Mora style blades so much and have recommended them for so long that we wanted to create something like it but much more durable. And hence the SIGMORA was born. The problem with Mora style blades is the weakness of their handle construction. So we made one with a full tang in some of the toughest steel on the market. We also added a pommel scraper for making the finest tinder material with ease. Then we made a custom kydex sheath for it and that is what we recommend, as it outperforms leather in many aspects. Though leather is good we don’t prefer it for numerous reasons.

The SIGMORA is the culmination of what we have been looking for in a bushcraft knife for almost a decade now. We aren’t trying to tell you that this is the ultimate one tool option because we don’t believe in that philosophy. A solid knife is the first of many tools you need for wilderness survival, but that knife should be dependable enough that if you had to survive with only that then you would be fine. Your knife is not something you can afford to have break on you in the field in hostile environments where you depend on it. Your choice of bushcraft blade should be one of your most important decisions for survival and this is one of the pieces of gear we recommend spending some money on. The two most important things to spend your money on is your sleep system and your wood working tools. Those items will ensure that you have a comfortable stay with the right training.

With the SIGMORA, we wanted something that was extremely durable with only the finest steel, yet something that was also a very good cutter. If your knife doesn’t do the job well you task it with, then the blade isn’t of much use no matter how durable it is. So there must be a good mix of durability as well as extremely good cutting efficiency. The knife we wanted should also have a neutral grip that created no hot spots on your hand. Rust was also a big deal for us since we are in wet conditions constantly.

This knife is primarily designed to handle light to medium bushcraft tasks and should be used for those purposes. If large chopping is required then you should be using your hatchet, larger knife, or your folding saw. Your knife, your axe, and your folding saw are your most important bushcraft tools by far.

The second knife in the set will be coming out later next year. The SIGMORA is designed to be piggy backed onto the larger Standard blade and the kydex is already setup to attach to larger blade when it is released. We believe two is one and one is none! So we always advocate carrying two knives and those two types of blades should be a fine scandi grind knife and a larger chopper type blade to accompany it. The majority of your bushcraft work will be done with the SIGMORA but you need a larger more durable blade for other projects that might damage a scandi grind style knife. The Scandi grind will never be as durable as a sabre grind, but it cuts much better. So why not carry both, and we totally recommend carrying at least 2 knives in the wilderness!
img1

We’ve found CPM3V to be the most durable steel we have ever used for a bushcraft knife. We aren’t trying to say other steels aren’t good, but this is probably the best we have tried for what we want in a survival knife. It is the choice of numerous high end custom knife makers for a reason. It has extremely good rust resistance, super durable steel, holds an edge forever, high carbon, and has some fantastic hand sculpted handles for the best grip.

For many people this knife will be out of their budget and that is fine. There are tons of solid bushcraft blades on the market for less money. But if you want professional grade equipment that has already been tried and tested in the toughest conditions by full time survival instructors. Then this is the one we recommend! Of all the blades we have worked with at SIGMA 3, the SIGMORA is our favorite knife to date! This is the only blade that cuts like a Mora but is as durable as a crow bar! Tough to find a design like this anywhere in a high end steel for any cheaper than this. You make the call but these won’t last long!

This was our first run.  Check our store for current stock of new Sigma knife models!

 

 

 

 

Sigma 3 will now offer a Veteran Discount on all domestic courses! SIGMA 3 instructor staff is made up heavily of combat veterans, and we want to serve the veteran community by providing affordable training for our brothers in arms. As a thank you, for all that you do or have done; we want to offer you savings of 25% OFF!

The Founder of the school is a combat veteran, and he has always tried to serve the veteran community in any way he can by helping vets with discounts and free training giveaways. He understands the need for escape from normal life, and the need for veterans to unwind and enjoy the beauty of the wilderness. Whether it be as a hobby, or something you want to do as a full time instructor for us by completing our 45 Day Survival Instructor course. If wilderness training or survival is your thing… and you served our country honorably, then SIGMA 3 wants to be your choice! Come train and learn with us at a discounted rate. We have handpicked THE BEST Instructors in this industry. Maybe we are a tad bias, but these guys get great reviews constantly and we are positive you will enjoy your time with our family of instructors around the country!

CLICK HERE FOR TRAINING SCHEDULE

All you need do to get this discount is provide a copy of your military ID or other proof that you served, and we will send you the discount code to plug into the payment system. You are welcome to blot out any personal info you don’t want to disclose on your personal military information. We just need to be sure you have served, so you must prove it in some form or fashion.

Just Contact Us for further information! Or call 417-522-8172

Wild Sumac Margaritas

The official summer drink here at SIGMA 3, has got to be Sumac Lemonade. What a tangy and invigorating flavor! We love sumac lemonade and we also love margarita’s so we thought, why not mix the two together and make an awesome wild summer drink for your parties! This is one of the simplest drinks to make. Here is all you need!

Ingredients for 1 gallon

4 cups of sumac seeds (add more for extra flavor); Rhus Coppalina, winged sumac or any type of sumac seeds other than poison sumac.
1 cup of sugar or honey
Bag of ice and 1 gallon of water
1 bottle of tequila (mix it like yah like)

How to:

-Use a fork to separate the seeds from the stalk. Add the seeds to the water. Set in sun for 12-24 hrs.
-Remove from the sun and strain seeds from water using cheese cloth.
-Add ice to your blender half way. Pour half to ¾ full with sumac lemonade solution into blender. Add 1 cup of sugar.
-Add as much tequila as yah like. Keep it country! And blend it up!
Optional: You can also add frozen fruit or fresh fruit to the mix. Adds sweetness and texture to the summer drink.

 

WARNING: Don’t confuse with Poison Sumac, Toxicodendron vernix. This can cause horrible dermatitis. The two plants have completely different color seed heads and poison sumac usually only grows in salt swamps and in specific areas in the south, so it is difficult to misidentify the two. But beware of this plant and make sure you have identified the plant positively.

That’s it. Super simple and well worth the effort if you have sumac in your area. You can make sumac margaritas for any get together and your friends will be impressed with your wild foraging abilities. This drink is guaranteed to be a hit at your next get together. Make sure to watch the how to video below and please add your commentary and thoughts!

The best bushcraft knife for under $75 is by far and away the Mora Bushcraft knife. There are a lot of good blades on the market for the money and I have tried most of them. But I still keep coming back to this one knife. In fact, even though I have several high end custom survival knives, I still find myself carrying a Mora Bushcraft knife at many of our survival courses. It is always in my go bag as a backup knife to my main survival knife set as well. It’s just a handy setup to have around. Figuring out the best bushcraft knife can be a difficult task for the beginner and we are taking all the homework out of it for you. Trust us, we have beat the hell out of this knife in dozens of survival courses and we have yet to see one fail! They aren’t the toughest knife on the market, but they are the best wood cutter and best bushcraft knife for general uses.

For less than $75, you get the best bushcraft knife from Mora, a good firestarter, and a sharpening stone built right onto the blade. It’s an all in one survival kit on your side, because if you have a knife you can build anything else that you need with it in the wilderness. Survival and bushcraft is about improvising tools from the local landscape around you and the most important tool to do that is a good blade. Now many companies have tried to reinvent the wheel with all these fancy survival knives that have come out in recent years. But the simple truth about survival knives is that you don’t have to have a super steel, but you do need to have super good design. And the Bushcrafter fits the bill in all respects! The Mora is so good because of its comfortable handle design and a very well designed blade.

The Scandinavian style grind on the Mora is designed to fly through wood. It is a flat grind that is somewhat similar in its cutting efficiency to a chisel. It was simply designed to cut through wood easily and efficiently. This makes bushcrafting chores a breeze and time is money in the bush. Your knife should do the task quickly and should cut through the wood easily. That is the single most important thing a knife has to do when you have several bushcraft chores.

The best bushcraft knife is also a high carbon steel which is good for making fire with a flint and charred tinder. You always go with high carbon steel for survival and not stainless. Never get a stainless steel blade unless you plan to be in or around the water all the time. The high carbon blades just have to many advantages to not use them over the stainless versions. The knife also comes with a fixed belt loop and a swinging dangler belt loop for either type of carry. The belt loops detach quickly and a very secure in their construction. It comes with a great sheath, but there are also a lot of options to upgrade your sheath through custom kydex making companies such as Grizzly Kydex

The diamond sharpening steel does a great job on quickly putting an edge on the high carbon steel. And since it is conveniently located on the sheath, you will always be sure to have a sharpener when the task is needed. A dull blade is a dangerous blade, so always keep your tools sharp. And don’t forget knife safety when doing bushcrafting. The blade should never be cut towards any body part. Never carve on your legs or over the tops of your palms. You never know what could happen. I always say the best knife safety learning always comes from cutting yourself really bad one time, and you will never do it again. Don’t learn the hard way, practice safe methods. So be safe and get yourself a Mora knife for our survival classes today! As they are definitely the Best Bushcraft Blade for our courses. SEMPER PARATUS!

Here is an independent review on the Mora Bushcraft knife:

TheTruthAboutKnives.com

If your interested in purchasing one of these blades then make sure to check them out at our Survival Store

Buy Your Mora Bushcrafter Now!

 

 

© Copyright - Survival School Site Built By: Overhaulics