Shelter could be the deciding factor between life and death in a survival situation and understanding how to build one is an important skill to learn. Being exposed to the elements can lead to a whole lot of problems but it isn’t all about just building a shelter, it is also where you build the shelter that matters and that is what we are going to be looking at here today.
The first thing to consider is whether or not there is a water source nearby. You should have water stored in your kit but that will only get you so far. Without a water source nearby, you will be wasting valuable time and energy in finding water when you need it.
Although being close to a water source should be a top priority, you don’t want to build your shelter too close to the water source. If the weather takes a bad turn and it rains heavily, you could find your shelter getting flooded. This could be disastrous if it happens during the night.
The last thing that you want is to be all cozied up in your newly built shelter for a large branch or a rock to come rolling down. Not only may it destroy your shelter, but it could also cause you great harm.
A ground that is damp and cold will leave you shivering throughout the night. If in your location you cannot find any completely dry ground, use dried grass on the ground as an insulator.
On a cold night, cool air will settle at the bottom of a hill during the night. However, building your shelter up too high on a hill brings with it strong winds and uneven terrain. If you really have no other choice than to settle on a hilly area, set up your temporary shelter halfway or 3/4 up the hill as a compromise between cooler temperatures, safety and more tolerable winds.
Another important part to take in to consideration is the direction that the shelter will be facing. Check to see which way the wind is blowing and orient your shelter accordingly. The wind should be coming in behind your shelter not through the opening.
These are just a few of the things that you need to consider when choosing a site for your shelter. If one of the hazards mentioned is present in your chosen spot, it’s better to look for a different site.