Be prepared

This is a simple survival kit which can be easily assembled from camp or home supplies. Keep it with you at all times and only use it in an emergency.


Spare knife or small belt ax

Waterproof matches

Spare compass

12 extra ammo or whistle

Personal medicine or spare eyeglasses



Space sticks

Hard candy, chewing gum, dried fruit

Instant soup or cocoa, coffee or tea bags

Salt packs, sugar cubes or packs

High protein meats such as canned sausages

Iodine, aspirin, Band-Aids

Flash light, 3×3 ft. piece of aluminum foil

Needle and thread, hooks, line, flies

Nylon rope, safety pins, space blanket

Try to keep the pack small and light so as to be conveniently carried at all times.


Make sure you tell someone where you are going and when you plan to return. Don’t hide your car; leave it where it can be easily found and used as a starting point for searchers. The Warden Service is charged with finding you if you become lost.

Make sure you know the warden in the area you are hunting – tell him where you will be. If you cannot contact a warden directly, call the nearest State Police barracks and they will relay the message.


Maine guides and woodsmen-of-old were well aware of the principles of keeping the body warm. They knew that wool, even when wet, retains warmth far longer than flannel or cotton or man-made fabrics.

Along with knowing the value of wool they knew that putting on several layers of clothing served as a better insulator than one or two heavy layers. This is called the dead air principle. A layer of air is created between garment layers and is helpful in retaining warmth and sometimes, more importantly, in allowing for evaporation of perspiration. Trapped moisture can be a serious problem in a survival situation. Also, with layers, if the day warms a layer or two can be removed, still leaving enough clothing for the temperature.

More heat is lost through the head than any other part of the body, therefore a hat is essential to proper dressing. A hat should be a hunter orange both for safety and as an added help to searchers should you become lost or hurt.

One of the more versatile garments available to the hunter is a lightweight poncho which will give maximum protection from wind and rain while permitting the body to ventilate throughout. A hunter orange vest over your coat will add more protection as well as being an important safety item. The poncho can be used as part of a shelter in an emergency, a bedroll at night, a roof when it is raining , or something to carry water in. You can huddle under it during severe weather, carry a fellow outdoorsman on it as a stretcher between two poles or use it as a signal cloth.

Boots fall into three main categories: all rubber, all-leather and rubber-bottomed and leather topped. Whichever you choose make sure they fit with wool socks.

The all-rubber boots are waterproof but leave a lot to be desired in ankle support and do not allow ventilation. The all-leather, waterproofed boot is warm and sealed by silicone to the extent that all ventilation is excluded. Heavy moisture buildup can be expected in both of these boots and they must be well dried after every use.

Since rubber-bottomed, leather topped boots allow some ventilation through the leather, give good ankle support, are warm, adjustable, withstand punctures and are waterproof they make a good choice.

It is a good practice to carry an extra pair of wool socks when traveling for the day.


The most important of all your survival tools is the map and compass. Get a topographic map of the area you plan to hunt and before setting off on your trip some adjustments need to be made to the map. Continue the north-south magnetic line at the bottom of the map all the way on through the map. Draw other lines parallel to it one inch apart and up through the map. Now when you use the map and compass together, they will read exactly alike. An additional feature of your lines is that they are one mile apart on a one-inch to one-mile map and allow you to easily estimate distances at a glance.

While planning the hunt on your map, you should establish the boundaries of the area you will be hunting. Some landmark such as woods roads, railroad tracks or a river can be used for each direction. If you are hunting in a party, plan out the day’s hunt on the map before leaving and establish a specific area for each hunter which can help prevent being lost in the woods. – Courtesy of the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.

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