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What You Should Do When You Are Lost In the Forest

Aug 17, 2007
There are times when you think that you have less chances of getting lost when you are familiar with the woods. But sometimes you might even get lost because of your companion's faults.

I, with three companions, was hunting on the edge of a piece of woods that was about five miles square and surrounded by roads. Two of us were familiar with the territory, but the others had never hunted there.

On the northwest edge of this piece of woods there was a side hill, sloping to the east, where deer often spent the day. When these deer were disturbed, they usually headed in a northerly direction and crossed a road at the edge of the woods. Our plan was to drive this sidehill with three men while the fourth man covered the crossing. This section of the woods was about two miles long and not over a half-mile wide and was bounded on the east by a brook which flowed north at the foot of the slope. Before starting the drive, I explained the "lay of the land" to the two men who were to help me do the driving and told them to head north and not to cross any roads or brooks. The sky was over-cast but the clouds were thin enough so that the sun's position could be seen and there was little chance that any of us would get lost.

Only two of us drivers arrived at the road where the fourth man was stationed. We waited for the missing man for a reasonable time, blowing the car horn and shooting our guns occasionally in order to give him our location in case he was lost, and then two of us drove the car around the road looking for him. He was still missing at dark and, after listening for gun signals and checking most of the houses in the vicinity, we started for home with the intention of starting an organized search in the morning. About seven miles south of there we found him sitting beside the road waiting for us.

He had crossed the brook and at least one other stream, which he must have followed for some distance before he found a place that was shallow enough to wade. He had crossed an abandoned road and another piece of woods in order to arrive at the place where we found Mm. This man evidently did not travel in circles, as so many do, but traveled in an almost straight line in the wrong direction. As soon as he became lost, soon after we started, he disregarded everything which I had told him and only chance brought him out on a main road near a house where he was able to find out where he was. This man was unharmed, but he crossed one road without knowing it and might have crossed the second if the house had not been there.

People who are hunting in strange territory should not disregard advice and information offered them by natives of the district. If you meet a local man in the woods and he tells you that north is south, you should believe him unless you have positive proof that he is wrong. Nine times out of ten, he, with his intimate knowledge of the country, will be right. Very few men will be deliberately misleading in giving directions to a stranger, but sometimes a man is lost in his own back yard and doesn't know any more about directions than you do. Such people can usually be spotted by their manner. Any vagueness in giving directions or a reluctance in answering questions will give the idea that they are uncertain of their whereabouts and then a man should use his own judgment about believing them.

I would advice those hunters who are hunting in strange territory should not disregard advice and information offered to them by experts. These things can decrease your chances of getting lost while hunting.
About the Author
Mitch Johnson is a regular writer for http://www.kids-games-n-crafts.com/ , http://www.mycomicbooksresource.info/ , http://www.solidcomicbooks.info/
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