A SHTF scenario could force you to seek shelter in the mountains or a forest. Let’s say you are forced to move out by a cataclysm. It could be anything from a natural disaster, like a hurricane, flooding, an earthquake, to human threats. There could be bomb or terrorist attack threats, there could be invasions or there could be epidemics.
In any bug out situation, the more you know, the less you carry. There are very good odds you’ll seek shelter in a mountainous region, a forest, or some hills. You’ll be looking for an environment where you can camouflage and blend in, so an open field or a desert will probably not suit your purpose. Should you arrive in an environment with abundant lush vegetation, it would be worth your while to know how to best make use of your surroundings.
One of the common denominators in most natural environments is moss. Moss is one of the first forms of life on the planet, one of the best examples of ultimate survival. There are moss spores literally everywhere, waiting for the right combination of dim light and moisture to thrive. The spores can resist in extreme conditions, temperatures and for greatly extended periods of time without nutrients.
Other than being a wonderful survival example, it is also everywhere. You may find it in any dark, wet corner, in basements and underground urban environments. You will definitely find it in every forest, on the ground, on the rocks and trees. In a natural environment, one of your primary concerns will be finding shelter. Moss grows abundantly and it could be one of the best allies you could wish for in building a decent shelter. You can find one of my last article about surviving on moss here.
Moss for your shelter and survival
Camouflage will be one of your first concerns when building your shelter. Using moss on top of it acts as a great cover. Even if you have a larger shelter in the form of a cabin or a shed, covering it in moss will give it an abandoned look. In this way it will stir little if any interest and invaders or plunderers should pass by uninterested.
Make sure to keep your entrance at the back and don’t leave a clear or obvious trail leading to it. You want to make it seem as difficult to reach and as useless as possible. If someone recognizes there’s a shelter and decides to check it out, you want to make it for them as difficult as possible to get in.
Moss is always damp and prone to hold water. It also has a root system which is very interconnected and shallow. You can cut some large pieces of moss without worrying if they’ll hold together or not. You can easily transport and include the pieces in one layer of moss when building your shelter cover or roof. It will catch roots within 24 hours, making your shelter waterproof. It can also be adapted to capture clean drinking water.
Using moss as part of your structure also acts as insulation. Having such tight root systems makes it difficult for heat or energy to go through. This means it can help keep your shelter warm or cold. It can maintain body heat within the shelter or it can keep outside heat from entering your shelter. It’s really up to you how you use it and knowing how it works will do you great good.
After shelter, one of your first concerns when forced to live in the wild is building a fire to keep you warm. Dead moss is great for starting a fire. If you can’t find dead moss, pick up some moss anyway and leave it to dry. It can be extremely flammable. It’s very good for lighting up a fire and can also keep one running. Dried moss is very lightweight; therefore you might consider carrying some around.
Using moss when building your shelter could make the difference between a good job and a great job. When it comes to your survival, you shouldn’t settle for anything lower than a great job. In a SHTF situation you want to leave as little as possible to chance. With dangerous wild animals and human invaders as threats, your shelter will play a pivotal role in your survival. Do yourself a great favor and build a shelter that’s smart, solid and stealth.
Have you ever made use of moss during your survival practice or training? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.