Chapter 11

The Rule of Threes | Survival Packing

When packing for a wilderness adventure, consider the rule of threes. It will help you prioritize what you need.

The rule is – three minutes, three hours, three days, and three weeks.

The Rule Of Threes

3 Minutes

Your immediate priority is breathing. The first rule is that you can live for three minutes without air. It’s good to take a bandana or mask to cover your face in a fire or sandstorm to protect your airways. If you had an allergic reaction that blocked your airways, you’d need an antihistamine or inhalers. It’s also good to make sure you know how to perform a Heimlich maneuver on yourself and others. Three minutes is also enough to lose a large volume of blood, which can also be lethal. Gauze, tourniquets, and a first aid kit are essential.

3 Hours

You can survive roughly 3 hours in extreme temperature conditions. Being able to stay dry is crucial. An emergency space blanket will help to keep you warm. Even a tarp with a special backing would be helpful and, of course, could double up for use as a shelter too. Building a fire will also help with this. Having three sources to make fire is a must. Lighters, a fire steel or matches, or vaseline cotton balls are all essential.

3 Days

Three days is the most that you can survive without water. Taking a filter to purify water will help you to avoid this dangerous situation. In a similar vein, you can survive for three weeks without food. Packing some high-calorie energy bars will help keep that starvation at bay. Remember that packing more food than water is illogical in this sense.

Packing – Other useful tools

Here’s a roundup of the essential equipment we’ve mentioned throughout the guide. If you’re interested in knowing the specific ones we recommend, leave a comment or write to us directly.

  • Appropriate footwear & clothing (depending on terrain)
  • Tarpaulin
  • Rope/Survivor chord
  • Fishing line or similar
  • Vaseline soaked cotton balls
  • Lighter/Magnesium starters
  • A bottle of water (which when empty doubles as a container)
  • Water purifying tablets/ Steripen
  • Charcoal
  • A folding knife/ Multitool
  • Survival flashlights
  • Glow sticks
  • Mirrors
  • Whistle
  • A cell phone (and battery)
  • First aid kit
  • Duct tape
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The Rule of Threes | Survival Packing

Hopefully, the rule of threes and other useful tools will help you prepare for your trip to the wild.

This guide has described many of the basics of outdoor survival, but there is much more to discover for those interested.

If you’ve enjoyed reading, we’d be delighted if you’d let us know by leaving a comment below or sharing it with your friends on social media.

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