HOW TO SURVIVE being lost in the desert

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HOW TO SURVIVE being lost in the desert

While low deserts like the Sahara are extremely harsh and contain few survival aids,
 the more common high desert – anywhere above 762m (2500ft), such as Joshua Tree
 National Park, much of Utah and the Atacama Desert – has everything you need to
 survive, if you know where to look.

1  Cover up. Before you do
 anything, build a shelter and/
 or cover exposed areas of
 skin. Makeshift sunscreen
 can be made from mud,
 ground-up roots or the white
 powder found on Aspen trees
 – use anything that creates
 a barrier between you and
 the rays.

2  Keep your cool. Evaporative cooling is
 one of the most efficient ways to regulate
 temperature. Lightly wet some fabric and wrap
 it around your neck so it has direct contact
 with your jugular blood flow.

3  Drink up. Your body uses up to 2L of water
 per day, so begin to preserve the water you
 have and start hunting for fresh supplies.
 Whatever you do, don’t over-ration – instead,
 drink small sips throughout the day.

Take up dowsing. 

4  Take up dowsing. To find water, survey the
 landscape – water travels from high to low
 ground. Also, look for a spot where the tracks
 of several animals converge or where the
 vegetation changes from dry scrub to a
deeper green.

5  Make your own watering hole. If you can’t
 find water, don’t panic – plants drink during
the day, often depleting whatever water is
 present. At night, the water table rises again.
 Dig a large hole at a likely spot and water will
 begin to pool inside it.

6  Bed down. Finally, do what you can to stay
 warm at night. The key is to create a barrier
 between you and the ground. Air is a terrible
 conductor, so the more ‘airy’ the layer, the
 warmer you’ll stay.

grief 

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