If you could only keep one Bushcraft skill?

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Tony

White bear (Admin)
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Apr 16, 2003
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I was pondering the other day about which would be the most important skill for me to keep if I had to choose just one that I could hold onto and use forever more. It's hard because I like having fire skills, wood and carving skills, cooking skills, water and shelter skills etc... I think I settled on wood and carving skills as the one I would keep, to a large degree they wouldn't save me and mine if the world went apocalyptic but they bring me pleasure and I find them relaxing and mindful. So, it's a very personal thing.

If it was for survival it would be different I'm sure, but for now it's wood and knife/axe stuff.

How about you?
 
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gra_farmer

Full Member
Mar 29, 2016
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Kent
Agreed with your choice Tony, I find carving relaxing. Fire lighting and cooking skills should be classed as one and the same, so that would be my choice
 

TeeDee

Full Member
Nov 6, 2008
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Not sure if its a skill or maybe more a feeling?

I don't want to go to far off the philosophical deep end so I will try to keep it brief.

I believe its an element of Stoicism and appreciation of the 'just' the really basic things we need to survive and get by. I think Marcus Aurelius who got me thinking about this via his book Meditations.

If one spends a significant amount of time in the bush living rough then life " needs " become very simple indeed.

Shelter-Food-Water-Heat. That's it - One still survives - The world moves on.

Not social media updates , Not E-mail management , Not modern day anxiety disorder.




So I think for me , its that feeling/appreciation/vibe - that we don't need that much in reality.

That life, even if we lost everything in a heartbeat , continues.
 

MartiniDave

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Aug 29, 2003
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Cambridgeshire
This is a difficult one Tony!
I also find the carving aspect very relaxing and rewarding, in fact, I've pretty much become a crafter, rather than a bush crafter!
However, I think the skill I treasure most is sharpening. In my professional life in engineering so much hinged around the ability to sharpen the tools correctly for the task at hand. The same is true for carving, woodworking, butchery and even just cutting string!
A bit of a long winded answer, but I'll keep the sharpening skill set.

Dave
 

Macca.UK

Member
Aug 4, 2020
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Carving and sharpening are both very strong contenders, but for me I think it's the knowledge of knots and splicing I've got from bushcrafting (I appreciate that you can get into this from numerous different activities e.g. sailing).

I find myself in situations all the time around the house, garden or in the gym (not to mention actually out camping) when being able to quickly tie/lash something together is invaluable..

Macca
 

Scottieoutdoors

Forager
Oct 22, 2020
239
142
Devon
I like TeeDee's post. A positive mind set is something I try to keep, despite being typically drawn to cynicism - I can still remain positive! :D

Right now I don't have very many bushcraft skills... So I'd have to stick with that sort of positive thinking and the ability to find some form of physics or mental comfort in all manner of situations.
 

British Red

M.A.B (Mad About Bushcraft)
Dec 30, 2005
25,815
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Mercia
So, those that chose plant ID is that because it's what you enjoy most or you think is the most practical/life sustaining skill?
Its something that I use most frequently & practically Tone. We harvest lots of wild foods h such things as samphire. We have transported & planted Babingtons leeks, wild garlic and more onto the Smallholding. We can not only identify many "weeds" (e.g. cleavers) but know what they are good for (chickens adore them as food). Understanding plants really helps with things like seed saving (e.g. parsnips are a biennial umbelliferous plant), tree grafting (the most important contact point in a whip & tongue graft is just under the bark where the xylem & phloem must fuse between the rootstocks & scions). I could go on but you get the idea .
 

Tiley

Full Member
Oct 19, 2006
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Gloucestershire
This is really tricky. I reckon that I would like to keep the skill of 'wood lore', should such a thing exist. I see it as covering the identification of the trees, a deep understanding of their uses, carving (which I love for all sorts of reasons), cultivation and management to sustain that resource and fire. But perhaps I am wanting to have my cake and eat it? If a fudged, umbrella skill is permitted, then that's great; however, if it comes down to just one element of it, then it would have to be wood carving.
 
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Tony

White bear (Admin)
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If I were to chose one that was the most useful for survival it wold be plants, foraging etc. I would be lovely to be like you Red with a deeper understanding of the cycle of things, but in reality I've not invested the time to learn, maybe one day.
 

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