Everyone's so bored with the relative safety of civilized living that we've developed a deep fascination for living off the grid. That fascination is fed by survival shows, most notably, Bear Grylls' Man Vs. Wild.
This month, that survival show torch will be passed on to Discovery Channel's Marooned, where 38-year-old English adventurer Ed Stafford is left stranded in remote locations with nothing but a camera. Unlike Man Vs. Wild, the focus is not on getting to a location where you can get rescued. In this show, Ed attempts to transform himself into a bona fide hermit who can live successfully off the land.
In short, he not only tries to survive the perils presented by his environments, but becomes a part of its ecosystem—for 10 days at least.
In the nine-part series, our intrepid guide takes us through the toughest forests in Borneo, Thailand's monsoon-ravaged jungles, Western Australia's blistering heat, and Botswana and its selection of wild animals ready to eat anyone up for good.
How does he manage to thrive in these locales that we wouldn't survive in for a day? Well, first of all, he's got experience. This is a dude that once took an 860-day walk-trip across the Amazon jungle as featured in Discovery Channel's Walking The Amazon. And then he also spent 60 days alone with just a camera on a desert island for Naked Castaway.
Second of all, he follows his own advice regarding survival, which he shares below. You'll never know when these might come in handy, but in case you never find yourself in the jungle, we've included our own daily applications for these pieces of advice!
TIP 1: Explore your surroundings to find what you need
Ed Says: "When stuck on a remote island, it’s important to find a freshwater marsh which will serve as your source of drinking water. Marshes can usually be found near the mouths of rivers, and the edges of lakes and streams."
Apply it in the city: Explore your surroundings and make a mental map of the important locations that could provide something you need. Whether it's a laundromat or a new date place, it's good to not always rely on your phone's GPS.
TIP 2: Use your imagination and get crafty
Once you find freshwater, store it in your very own bamboo cup. Create bamboo cups by cutting dried bamboo sections into drinking glass-sized pieces. Create rain proof shelters by crisscrossing banana or coconut tree fronds: over-under-over-under.
Apply it in the city: Use your imagination with things that you'd normally just throw away. Don't hoard, but you'll never know when an old paper bag can be used for your kid's arts and crafts project or when you'll need that big appliance carton box as storage.
TIP 3: Collect from nature
If you aren’t able to find a freshwater source, collect or extract water from plantain shoots or leaves.
Apply it in the city: Your neighbor's mangoes on a tree look delicious, but for the love of decency, ask for permission from your neighbor before you climb that tree and pluck them fruits off.
TIP 4: Build a fire
It’s essential to build a fire to stay warm and cook food. Gather dried tinder, twigs and branches, and set them on fire either by using a lens to concentrate sunlight rays on them or plowing sticks and branches together repeatedly to create friction.
Apply it in the city: Fire is life. So try not to run out of LPG. Your misis will thank you for it!