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Monday, 25 June 2018

Shelter placement and wind direction.

It's almost one of those instinctive things, build your shelter with its back to the prevailing winds, it offers you protection right? Yes but it can also cause problems



Looks good on an elevated rise to avoid a cold sink, back to the wind and room in front but..
The wind races over the slanted roof causing an acceleration of air draft resulting in a drawing effect towards the shelter..



And once you light your fire the draw will suck any smoke directly into your shelter.
I made this a very smokey fire intentionally to show just how the draw works in a strong wind and you can clearly see how the smoke bends into the shelter just like an eddy in a creek or stream.
When building a shelter with strong prevailing winds build it so that the wind is parallel to your shelter and draws the fire to the side, it could save you a lot of heartache if you've spent a long time building.

Wednesday, 20 June 2018

Great summer Fungi Find

When out leading a foraging walk recently I came across some lovely edible summer tree fungi



Chicken of the woods, growing on an oak. A little past it's best but we did take a little and cooked it up and it was outstanding





And dryads saddle also called pheasants wing or pheasants back, this fungi was in profusion but we only took a little to try, again all thought it was quite delicious.

Sunday, 17 June 2018

Lost its Mum

While out on another short expedition we were sitting round the fire late one evening when we heard a chirping sound, it sounded like a bird but there were some who recognised it straight away, a fallow deer fawn had wandered into camp and was looking for its mum



It was quickly and quietly moved to the outside of camp where it's mum could find it safely. All ended well as we saw the two of them together as dawn broke the following morning.

Sunday, 10 June 2018

.50 cal shell Ferro rod.

Managed to get my hands on a few .50 cal shell casings so I thought I'd put a get to rod in one and see how it turned out.



This was the 125mm x 12.5mm ferro rod which was a perfect fit with some epoxy resin. Stuffed inside the casing so the rod didn't slip the whole way in and I also added a lanyard.
It's a big beast as you can see next to the Mora kansbol.

Thursday, 24 May 2018

Top ten UK bushcraft blog awards.

Feedspot had whittled down all the bushcraft blogs in the UK to the top ten, and guess what, we made it in there..

A very many thanks to Feedspot and the founders for this award.

https://blog.feedspot.com/uk_bushcraft_blogs/

Sunday, 13 May 2018

Telling the difference between a cockle and a clam

I went for a coastal bimble last week after a storm to see what Poseidon have coughed up onto the shore, always an interesting adventure.



A huge mid part of a nipper from a brown crab, this fella must have weighed 2 pounds easily..



A leg from a spider crab. These were not originally that common around our shores but seem to be more readily found these days.



Lots and lots of razor clam shells



And lastly quite a few clam and cockle shells, and the easy way to tell them apart... the radial lines on a cockle are vertical and those on a clam are horizontal..its as easy as that.

Both taste really good in a clam chowder !!

Wednesday, 25 April 2018

Rainbows end.

It's the first time we've been able to wet a line this year but it was thoroughly enjoyable when the chance happened by.
I'm not much of a fly fisher but am an absolutely obsessed lure angler believing that it's much more difficult to catch a fish on something that looks nothing like a natural prey item than something that does!

So off we went to a local fishery and I tried every bait and lure I had from powerbait to rapalas and nothing was working. However you may remember me making some inline spinners in a post a while back so I chose one of these as a last resort..3 casts had 3 fish..


And another few casts and I had my 5 fish limit. All on a homemade spinner..the best fish was 3 1/2 pounds and the smallest 2 pounds..though Davy had the biggest fish of the day at about 5 pounds on the fly.


We smoked one on the day for lunch


And a tasty treat it was, here's hoping for many more days like that one.

Sunday, 8 April 2018

The wrong way to tap a Birch

I went for a walk in one of my usual haunts and came across this rather poorly camouflaged attempt to tap a birch.


I could tell straight away by the duck tape, copper pipe and poor attempt to hide it using hydera that whoever was doing this knew they shouldn't be and also didn't know what they were doing.
I dismantled the contraption to find they'd drilled into the tree a good 2 inches much farther than necessary


So I took out the pipe and cleaned the hole and sealed it up. To be honest I'm not too sure if the tree is going to survive after this but I'll keep a check on it.
I've no problem with people tapping a birch as long as it's done correctly, I just hope I bump into the person who did this.

Wednesday, 28 March 2018

Buzzard gets an Award

Buzzard Bushcraft was recently voted one of the top 40 bushcraft blogs on the net by Feedspot. So a mighty big thankyou to Anuj and all at Feedspot for their award, it's very much appreciated.

Sunday, 25 March 2018

Whilicks with garlic butter

Over here we call them whilicks, often pronounced 'whileeks'. These are the common periwinkle, a sea snail commonly found around our coast, and they taste very nice.


Simply boil them for a few minutes then add them to some garlic butter


Get a needle or toothpick, hoke them out of the shell and eat, quite delicious.

Saturday, 17 March 2018

Ceramic rod sharpener

I've found over the years that people often sharpen the entire bevel of their knife when all they rwally need to do is refine the very edge.
I often do this with a ceramic rod.
They can be brittle but the heftier the rod the more resilient it is, so..


I found one that should last a while


Not exactly packable but it certainly helps realign the edge on your knife quickly rather than spend time removing metal that doesn't need removed.

Saturday, 24 February 2018

Bone fish hooks.

I had some pieces of camel bone left over after a project and instead if consigning them to the rubbish bin I thought I'd make a couple of fish hooks.


The first thing was to scribble a basic pattern on the bone after I had flattened it out.


Then with a coping saw carefully cut out the pattern


Then the sanding and the finishing


Of course these hooks aren't meant for fishing but are based on the Maori pendants I've seen.
These are worn as good luck charms but also as an indication that the wearer is able to provide from the wild to feed himself and his family.
Very apt indeed I think.

Wednesday, 7 February 2018

Hair Ice

Hair ice or sometimes called beard ice is an unusual phenomena that only occurs in very set climatic conditions and only with dead wood with a particular fungi in it.

Unlike other forms of frost which we know about and see often, like hoar frost in the pic below


Hair ice only forms at certain temperatures and in certain conditions but the result can be spectacular


From a distance it can look like a plastic bag or other discarded trash


On closer inspection it looks a little like a fungus, but really close up..its pure ice and it's wondrous when it forms like this




You'll never see sights like this for real if you don't get out into the woods..

Monday, 29 January 2018

Stormbringer

We've had quite a few storms recently and they're causing even more widowmakers and hung ups..



These were down when we went out yesterday, always look up and around, be careful where you set camp and take precautions.
Let's be careful out there.

Saturday, 20 January 2018

The perils of widowmakers

How many times have we heard the old adage, before you sit down - look up!
Of course on the day you get complacent is the day something will happen. Rotten trees and storms don't mix and if you happen to be in the vicinity of a widowmaker.... this can happen lol.


The thing that ticked me off the most was that we'd only been there 20 minutes.
Anyway, pack back on and a long march out of the woods and a trip to hospital.


Nothing that a few stitches couldn't fix and a story to be told around future campfires, no doubt it will be embellished with each telling !