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Desert Survival Course

5480 Views 12 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  Expeditioner
After searching extensively for advanced survival courses in my area ( southern nevada ) i started thinking. it was a pretty long thought train, since i was pissed that i couldnt find anything. well i got to thinking that refining my own desert survival skills might be as good as learning more advanced things. i also thought that teaching people is the best way to refine skills already learned and to learn new things from new people.

anyway, i have been working out a lesson plan for a beginning desert survival class for 10-12 people. i have a friend on board who is also a "survivalist". my question is, is there anyone here who has given instruction on survival or wilderness training? is their anything specific i need to do legality wise ( business license, insurance, yada yada BS ) any tips or pointers would be great.

and also, once everything is set and done, what is a good price to charge for this service? not that im too terribly worried about the money, but time isnt free and people may feel jipped if they dont pay.

thanks for the advice

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I would strongly recommend you do a google search for BOSS, the Boulder Outdoor Survival School and read every link you run across. First off, it's an outstanding program from everything I've read. Top notch instruction with no shortcuts. Students are tested in the Utah desert and go home with the confidence that they really can make it in the wilderness in a very harsh environment.

Second off, you'll find a number of interesting articles on the student they lost a couple years ago on a trip and the law suit they settled. I can't recall the details, but it's enough to make you really think about the consequences if things go horribly wrong and you're the owner of the business.

I'm hoping to take their seven day class next summer, but it's not about survivalism, it's about primitive survival. I'd be fascinated by a survivalist survival course, but I don't know how big the market is or how much you could charge.

I'd say at minimum, you should equip every student with a SPOT or similar device. At the very least, it makes body recovery more convenient.
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I've had a SPOT since April and I love it. So does the GF. I ride solo a lot and it's reassuring that I can send her an "ok" message when I leave the trailhead so she knows where I'm riding, even if there's been a last minute change in plans or I'm out of cell range. If I don't follow up with an ok message within a half hour of dark, then she'll call my cell phone. If I don't answer, she'll start the manhunt. That way, even if I'm lying unconscious, she can send out the troops or at least notify them to start searching in the morning and verify my car is still at the trailhead.

I've never used the help function, but it goes to the GF and two other close cycling friends who'd be willing to drive out and pick me up if it started pouring rain or I broke something on the bike I couldn't repair. They know that's how I'd use it and they'd coordinate a "rescue" themselves.

Obviously the 911 feature is self explanatory. The cool thing is you can upload a bio with your outdoor experience, equipment description, contact numbers, etc., so search and rescue knows who they're searching for when they get the call from the SPOT control center.

So far I've been impressed with coverage. I've only had two times where it didn't send a signal when I did an ok check out of several hundred uses and I'm not sure if perhaps I didn't hit the button hard enough or perhaps the terrain was too steep to get a satellite signal out (I'd suspect this in one case, but not the other). If you don't subscribe to the tracking service (which updates your location every 10 minutes) a single set of batteries lasts a full year. With the tracking the batteries only last two weeks.
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