Cadets go bush to learn to survive the elements
BIGGENDEN'S Emergency Services cadets have learnt bush survival skills at a camp in Conondale from one of the best: a former SAS soldier with 17 years of service.
Earlier this month, cadets undertook the 'Primitive Bush Skills with Bush Lore' camp under the tutelage of Rich Hungerford, who said that, to survive when lost in the bush, you need to use your head.
"Survival is 80 per cent thinking and 20 per cent skills,” he said.
"So in an emergency, sit, think observe, plan and act.”
Cadet coordinator Moira Thompson said humans must find a way to satisfy their basic needs if they find themselves in a sticky situation.
"Humans can live for no longer than three hours in adverse weather (hot or cold), three days without water, and three weeks without food,” she said.
Cadets were taught how to make a bush shelter without tools, making tools from stone, lighting fires with flint and tinder, water collecting by tying a plastic bag to a tree, and how to set animal traps using plant material.
Mrs Thompson said the cadets are now planning a survival camp of their own in a remote location.
The camp was funded by the Biggenden RSL Sub Branch.
Secretary Alex McNaughton said the organisation was only too happy to assist.
"The Sub Branch saw the course as a wonderful opportunity for the cadets to be involved in developing leadership and team building skills as well as being taught bush survival techniques,” he said.
"Sub Branch members can recall undertaking similar training as part of their basic recruit training many years ago.
"The members also believe that such training will stand the cadets in good stead for the rest of their lives.”