Category Archives: Warrior Fieldcraft

Highway closures in B.C. raise concerns about local food security during disaster

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Coquihalla Highway closed in February 2017 due to heavy snowfall, leaving transport trucks and private vehicles stuck on the highway overnight.

Experts say communities have between 3-5 days of supplies before more needs to be shipped in

By Andrew Kurjata and Ash Kelly, CBC News, Feb 15, 2017

A series of highway closures has highlighted how dependent B.C. communities are on regular shipments of food and supplies and raised questions about what would happen to that supply chain during a prolonged emergency. Read the rest of this entry

PDF: Small Unit Leader’s Guide to Mountain Warfare Operations

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US Marines conduct mountain/winter warfare training.

Since moving to Gitxsan territory in northern BC, and with the onset of winter bringing -20 Degrees Celsius weather, I’ve acquired a renewed interest in winter survival techniques.  During the course of research I came across this US Marine Corps manual on mountain warfare operations, which also includes winter warfare, and thought it might be of use to some readers living in regions with extreme cold temperatures. Read the rest of this entry

Photo Essay: Trail Building in Maxhla Didaat

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Looking north from the cabin at Maxhla Didaat.

I recently had the opportunity to travel to Maxhla Didaat, a Gitxsan territory belonging to the House of Gwininitxw.  I was part of a crew working on building trails for trap lines in the territory, which is located about 100 km north of Kispiox, “BC.”  Read the rest of this entry

Indigenous Alberta youth reconnect with nature and culture at Ghost River Rediscovery camp

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Ghost River Rediscovery camp west of Calgary teaches survival skills and Aboriginal traditions to kids and teens. (Courtesy of Ghost River Rediscovery)

City kids sleep in teepees and learn Aboriginal traditions from Blackfoot, Cree and Metis elders

By Danielle Nerman, CBC News July 27, 2016

The Ghost River Rediscovery camp west of Calgary can only be reached by gravel road and a river crossing.

While the journey through the wooded forest of the Stoney Nation is not super strenuous, it can be daunting for campers who have never lived off the grid.

“A lot of these kids are pretty city-based. So we’ve got kids who have never camped before, never built shelter, don’t know how build fire,” said Kristie Schneider, the camp’s director of operations. Read the rest of this entry

A starving wolf stalked a woman and her dog for 12 hours. Then along came a bear.

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Joanne Barnaby, left, is reunited with Tammy Caudron after 18 hours in the Canadian bush.

June 17, 2016

Joanne Barnaby was deep in the deadfall, smeared in mosquitoes and blood, dehydrated and near exhaustion, when she heard the call of a mama bear searching for its cub.

Barnaby couldn’t believe her luck.

Twelve hours earlier, she had been picking mushrooms in the remote Canadian wilderness when she had heard a growl behind her. She turned around and saw Joey, her faithful mutt, locked in a snarling standoff with a skinny black wolf. Read the rest of this entry

The Tourniquet

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Boston Firefighter James Plourde carries an injured woman away from the scene after a bombing near the finish line of the Boston Marathon in April 2013. The woman has an improvised tourniquet on her left leg just below the knee.

By Warrior Publications, June 2, 2016

Tourniquet: A device, typically a tightly encircling bandage, used to check bleeding by temporarily stopping the flow of blood through a large artery in a limb… French : tourner, to turn (from Old French).”

The Free Dictionary

A tourniquet is a binding that is applied to an injured limb to stop arterial blood flow resulting from a severe injury (characterized by bright red spurting blood). Although it has been used on battlefields since at least the times of the Roman Empire, after World Wars 1 and 2 the tourniquet became a questionable, even dangerous technique that was to be used only as a last resort, if at all. Despite the apparent absence of any medical studies, the tourniquet was said to cause such severe nerve damage that it often resulted in amputations.

Warning: there are some graphic images in the following article. Read the rest of this entry

UVic prof creates new digital guide to plants, animals on B.C.’s wild coast

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Black bears in Central Coast forest.

by Gemma Karstens-Smith, Vancouver Sun, April 24, 2016

VICTORIA — An innovative app created by a University of Victoria professor is giving people around the world the ability to experience the vast, diverse beauty of British Columbia’s coast.

Ecologist Brian Starzomski and his team have catalogued more than 700 species in the Great Bear Rainforest and logged them in a new digital field guide called “Central Coast Biodiversity.” Read the rest of this entry

‘Magical ingredient’: Hunters learn to tan hides using animal brains in Winnipeg

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Carl Froese prepares to show people at the brain tanning course how to skin a hide. (CBC)

Manitoba Buckskin owner passes on traditional First Nations hide tanning knowledge through workshop

By Bryce Hoye, CBC News, April 2, 2016

The smartest way to produce unique and durable traditional leather products is to treat the hide with smoke and animal brains, a Winnipeg hide-tanning expert says.

“We’re basically tanning hides the way they were done thousands of years ago using the same methods and same natural materials,” said Carl Froese, owner of Manitoba Buckskin. Read the rest of this entry

Fish skin clothing and gear

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Marlene Nielsen (Yup’ik) with her newest fish skin parka. Photo: Marlene Nielsen, Facebook.

Recently Marlene Nielsen (Yup’ik) posted a photograph to Facebook showing her latest creation, a fish skin parka.  I had heard of salmon skin being used for moccasins but had never really heard or seen much more about this.  After contacting Marlene about reposting her photos, I did a bit of research and there’s actually quite a history of fish skin clothing and gear ranging from the northern Canada to Asia.  In the process I also found the following article that gives more information about the historical uses and methods of producing fish skin textiles. Read the rest of this entry

Nunavut hunter falls through ice, makes pants out of a fox to stay warm

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Jimmy Iqaluq built this igloo on a small island near Sanikiluaq to stay warm after his snowmobile fell through ice and his pants became soaked. (submitted by Jack Iqaluq)

Well-known carver Jimmy Iqaluq found safe Sunday near Sanikiluaq

CBC News, Feb 24, 2016

A crafty hunter from Sanikiluaq, Nunavut, made emergency pants out of a fox after he fell through ice over the weekend.

Well-known carver Jimmy Iqaluq, who is in his 70s, was hunting alone for polar bears on the southern part of the Belcher Islands Saturday when his snowmobile went through the ice. Read the rest of this entry