Survival

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Katie Heaney won't ever climb Mount Everest, but she's ready to step outside and try some things—like looking for a moose

Bug spray seems messy and outdated. Do the apps for Android phones and iPhones really work? What about bug-repellent clothing?

From sharks and cougars to avalanches and frozen waters, four survivors share their stories in their own words. Plus: expert commentary.

When Robert Wood Jr. disappeared in a densely forested Virginia park, searchers faced the challenge of a lifetime. The eight-year-old boy was autistic and nonverbal, and from his perspective the largest manhunt in state history probably looked like something else: the ultimate game of hide-and-seek.

Meet the preppers, a rattled, robust survivalist movement whose members just hate being called survivalists. Emily Matchar investigates the 21st century's wildest new apocalyptic scene.

In the stunning and remote wilderness along northern British Columbia’s Highway 16, at least 18 women—by some estimates, many more—have gone missing over the past four decades. After years of investigation, authorities still don’t know if it’s the work of a serial killer or multiple offenders. Bob Friel drives into the darkness for answers.

What if you are backpacking or camping, and are confronted by a fast-moving wildfire? What should you do? What should you carry?

More difficult to assess than you think

Surprising advice that can save your life

He was a proud Marine who survived three ­brutal tours in Iraq and had plans to redeploy with the ­national guard. But when 30-year-old Noah ­Pippin ­vanished inside Montana’s remote Bob ­Marshall ­Wilderness, he left behind a trail of haunting secrets—and a mystery that may never be solved.

The freediving world championships occur at the outer limits of competitive risk. ­During the 2011 event, held off the coast of Greece, more than 130 athletes assembled to swim hundreds of feet straight down on a single breath—without (they hoped) ­passing out, freaking out, or drowning. Meet the amazingly fit, unquestionably brave, and possibly crazy people who line up for the ultimate plunge.

Alone in a vast Alaskan wilderness, seven teens fend off a grizzly bear—then try to stay alive

Since the release of 127 Hours, a certain canyon in Utah has become a lot more popular—and dangerous

You're ready to act on those good intentions, but how do you know the organizations you're backing deserve your trust? Here are the 30 best—smartly managed groups with transparent financials, efficient spending, and track records of on-the-ground success.

During the Great Flood of 2011, the Mississippi was an unleashed monster, with deadly currents and a flow rate that could fill the Superdome in less than a minute. Defying government orders, Delta native W. Hodding Carter and two wet-ass pals canoed 300 miles from Memphis to Vicksburg—surfing the crest, watching wildlife cope with the rising tide and assessing 75 years of levee building.

How to survive 10 deadly scenarios.

If I'm alone and my truck is stuck on a muddy road, what's the best way to get out?

How should I deal with wet/smelly/rotting feet in the wild?

I have heard that a skilled tracker can tell what a person ate, any injuries, and myriad other personal details about their life just from looking at their footprints. Is this true?

What are your thoughts on carrying a trash bag or space blanket in your pocket for making a shelter or dealing with hypothermia?

Whenever adventure goes wrong, more than 5,000 everyday heroes stand ready for wilderness search and rescue. Meet six of the best in the business: unsung pioneers, backcountry veterans, and saviors of last resort who will risk everything to bring you back alive.

Which current survival TV host has the most wilderness cred? The Editors Santa Fe, NM

What should I carry in my car in case I break down in the backcountry or have to survive on the road during a blizzard? The Editors Santa Fe, NM

If I don't have a compass, how can I tell direction? The Editors Santa Fe, NM

What survival priorities should you have in the city versus the wilderness during a major crisis? The Editors Santa Fe, NM

What rope and string should I pack in my survival kit?

How do I know if wild game has the plague? The Editors Santa Fe, NM

What are the best survival schools in the country? The Editors Santa Fe, NM

Decades after the Soviet-era meltdown drove 60,000 people from their homes in the Ukraine, a rebirth is taking place inside the exclusion zone. With Geiger counter in hand, the author explores Europe's strangest wildlife refuge, an enchanted post-apocalyptic forest from which entirely new species may soon emerge.

There are certain skills every Outside guy should possess. For this, the first installment of our four-part fundamentals series, we address the basics of adventure.

What satellite phone should I take on a kayaking trip around Fiji? The Editors Santa Fe, NM

Aspen’s Michael Ferrara is bringing attention to a little-known problem: post-traumatic stress disorder among the people who save our lives

What's the best GPS for extended backcountry hikes? The Editors Santa Fe, NM

How can I survive a night in the snow? The Editors Santa Fe, NM

Is global positioning contributing to our general sense of lostness? One British navigation nerd thinks so.

What's the ultimate Christmas gift for a survival nut? The Editors Santa Fe, NM

What is the best way to melt snow for water? The Editors Santa Fe, NM

What are some good edible desert plants? The Editors Santa Fe, NM

Caught in an avalanche. Mastless in the Indian Ocean. Come back alive from your worst nightmare.

What should I do if caught in a flash flood in a slot canyon? The Editors Santa Fe, NM

Before the event, the doc gave me a six-day course of steroids for my back and threw in a bottle of Vicodin. “At your age,” he said, “after this race, you’re going to need it.”

When minister and aid specialist James Gulley came home alive from the Haitian earthquake—barely, after an incredible survival ordeal in Port-au-Prince—he turned right around and went back. His son went, too, discovering the true power of a faith he'd never shared.

What's the best axe for chopping wood? The Editors Santa Fe, NM

What's the best way to stay warm if I'm lost with no fire? The Editors Santa Fe, NM

If I'm lost, what's the best impromptu bug repellent? The Editors Santa Fe, NM

How can I make an emergency rain shelter with a tarp? The Editors Santa Fe, NM

What's the best mirror for a survival kit? The Editors Santa Fe, New Mexico

What are your thoughts on reality survival shows? Can one learn any skills of value or are these largely staged? Tammy San Diego, California

Which compass is better, the Silva Ranger or the Suunto MC-2? JonahtHuntington New York

What's your favorite survival trek of the summer, and why? — The Editors Santa Fe, New Mexico

What are some good places to learn how to track game in the forest during the summer? — The Editors Santa Fe, New Mexico

When you're hiking in the desert during the summer, is it best to be fully clothed or to wear minimal clothing? What outfit would you recommend? — The Editors Santa Fe, New Mexico

What animals can you hunt in the desert in the summer, and how? — The Editors Santa Fe, New Mexico

If you've run out of water in the desert, what natural resources can you drink, and where can you find them?—The EditorsSanta Fe, New Mexico

How frequent are summer thunderstorms in the desert? Can you rely on that as a source of fresh water?—The EditorsSanta Fe, New Mexico

Is it safe to eat snakes? Which desert snakes are the easiest to catch and/or most tasty?—The EditorsSanta Fe, New Mexico

Is it better to use a boot or a shoe when hiking in the desert during the summer? Any footwear recommendations?—The EditorsSanta Fe, New Mexico

Which cacti are the most edible and nutritious?—The EditorsSanta Fe, New Mexico

How does a guy go from hardcore adventurer to (mega-famous) television hero without losing his head? By playing himself.

What survival food should you pack for going into the backcountry this season?—The EditorsSanta Fe, New Mexico

Is it safer to drink melted snow or water from a stream?—The EditorsSanta Fe, New Mexico

What are the best places in the U.S. to test your backcountry survival skills this spring?—The EditorsSanta Fe, New Mexico

What's a good insect repellent that isn't too harsh?—The EditorsSanta Fe, New Mexico

What wildlife do you need to watch out for in the Southwest desert during the spring?—The EditorsSanta Fe, New Mexico

Don't like our list? Tell us your picks for the 10 greatest adventurers.

Overlooked mountain ranges, river beer, running album, gear of all time, and 47 other big ideas, accidental winners, and awesome things about the world outside we've come to love over the past 33 years. Introducing our first annual Editors' Choice Awards...

What should you look for when tracking elk?—The EditorsSanta Fe, New Mexico

Do you recommend using a hammock or tent when camping in the tropics?—The EditorsSanta Fe, New Mexico

What type of footwear do you recommend for deep snow or winter trekking?—The EditorsSanta Fe, New Mexico

How is a signal fire different from a regular fire for warmth? t t— The Editors tSanta Fe, New Mexico

What's your favorite multi-tool? t t— The Editors tSanta Fe, New Mexico

What should you do if you injure yourself while backcountry skiing? The Editors Santa Fe, New Mexico

How do you identify and treat hypothermia? The Editors Santa Fe, New Mexico

What's the best water filter for sub-zero temperatures? Chet Freeman Quincy, Massachusetts

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