Weapon of choice

I intend to hunt and gather along the way, and using the bow hunters website as a guide they recommend being able to hit a dinner plate size grouping from 25 metres

So this is my goal before heading off in two months. I will also limit the size of my catch to small game only. Because breaking down and preserving large game will take more time and energy. So nothing bigger the a goat.

This doesn’t mean I won’t take food with me! I am no extreme survivalist.

The question is how much can I rely on my environment to give me the much needed calories? And what will be the best self made weapon to do the task?

Here are the advantages and disadvantages for each of the old school hunting tools I am training with for the journey.

Sling

image

image

I am amazed I never played with these as a kid! It’s just a bit of rope and a rock. Even if I don’t choose it as my weapon of choice it makes a great belt!

Advantage
Its size and ammunition (egg shaped river stones) are its strongest qualities.

Disadvantage
Blunt force projectiles are good at crippling but not really great at killing ( I would like to consider myself ethical when killing for food ). So will be restricted to birds and rabbits.

Atlatl

image

image

These are ancient spear throwers apparently used to take down mammoths!

Advantage
Will be safe from mammoths and can double as a walking stick.

Disadvantage
Accuracy is dependent on spear build quality. The spear itself will be made up of three parts with the tip interchangable so I don’t break them when practising. It is a complicated build but no where near as bad as a…

Bow

image

To be able to gain epic bow skills would be a personal dream.

Advantage
I have someone to guide me through the bow building process. There are permits (unlike the other two weapons) to get to hunt on DOC land and a whole community of people who hunt with bows I can gain much needed tips from. And anything that breaks I can buy from local hunting shops.

Disadvantage
It is the worst to carry out of the three.
For once it would be nice to have the self made thing be smaller than the modern stuff.

I will admit that I am more of a fisherman then a hunter. So waterways will be where my self made skills will really shine. I have been making fish hooks and weaving nets and eel traps for a wee while now.

And my gatherer skills are average at best but hopefully I will find other gatherer types on the way who can give me much needed local knowledge (When gaining knowledge always go local).

What I have found in my pursuit for food is that there is a lot more out there then you may think. It just happens to look like weeds and pests (see puha and insects). As long as your not a fussy eater you would be surprised what you can collect. But I won’t truly know how much I can rely on my environment till I am in it.