Results 1 to 13 of 13

Thread: Space Blanket Survival

  1. #1
    New member
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    1

    Default Space Blanket Survival

    Hi Guys, My name is Keith McCafferty and I am the Survival Editor of Field&Stream. My October column is on space blankets--their history, uses, etc. Would anyone like to share a story of using a space blanket in a survival situation, whether hiking, hunting or fishing? I'm also interested in your opinions about space blankets, what uses you've put them to and if you've had failures with them (some of the cheaper and older models shredded when you tried to unwrap them). Thanks and I hope to hear from you. Sincerely, Keith

  2. #2

    Default

    Lets see... The most recent one was when I was out moose hunting a couple of years ago in January, south of Fairbanks. I was up in the foothills of the Alaska range and I shot my moose after lunch. I had never skinned a moose before and it was dusk by the time that I was finished. I loaded the sled down behind my snow machine and started off down the hill, in the dark. I got into a steep drainage and ended up in a place that I shouldn't have been. It was a frozen beaver pond with thick brush all around it.

    I spent a long time trying to cut my way out of it with no success. I had no idea of the best way to get back to the main trail, which was about three miles away. My tent was four miles farther down the trail.

    I decided that my best option was to bivy out. I was wearing good artic gear and I had an axe, a small saw, a couple of cheap space blankets and some other misc small stuff. I built a small shelter to help block the wind and put a space blanket up to act as a reflector for the fire that i built in front of me. I pulled the seat off of my snow machine to insulate myself from the ground and ended up getting up to gather wood about every 15 or 20 minutes. I used the other space blankets to try and wrap up in.

    They were undersized and but they helped increase my comfort. I would have been fine without them. I estimted that it got to 10 or 20 below that night. It was definately warmer up higher than down low. I hudled so close to the fire that I burned a hole in my bunny boots.

    The story really got interesting for me when I couldn't get my snow machine started the next morning...

    I have bivied on other occasions with the thicker hevyduty tarp like space blankets. I would have had better luck that night if i had one.

  3. #3
    Member danattherock's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    NC
    Posts
    5,608

    Default Don't buy the cheapos...

    Luckily I have never needed to use one, but I carry the new high end ones with me. My wife and I take float trips on arctic rivers each year and these are in our emergency kits. Very high quality. See them here...

    http://www.campmor.com/outdoor/gear/Product___89033
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

  4. #4

    Default

    I found a system that worked while winter camping on a deer hunt. The temperature took a sudden unexpected drop and I was comfortable down to the 25 below level. I set up the tent, then broke out the bivi sack and line it with one of those old heavy emergency "blankets". (Reflective side facing in.) then I put the pad in, then the bag. I never once got cold with this combo and has become standard fare for winter camping. The sleeping bag was rated with a comfort rating of 0 degrees but from past experience there was no comfort at that temperature, more of a survival rating at best.

  5. #5
    Member Vince's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Fairbanks most the time, Ancorage some of the time,& on the road Kicking Anti's all the time
    Posts
    8,989

    Default No one else will say it? I WILL!!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Blue Devil View Post
    Hi Guys, My name is Keith McCafferty and I am the Survival Editor of Field&Stream. My October column is on space blankets--their history, uses, etc. Would anyone like to share a story of using a space blanket in a survival situation, whether hiking, hunting or fishing? I'm also interested in your opinions about space blankets, what uses you've put them to and if you've had failures with them (some of the cheaper and older models shredded when you tried to unwrap them). Thanks and I hope to hear from you. Sincerely, Keith
    hey blue devil? how many forums you have this posted on?

    when a persons story hits the web, is it okay to publish it after that?


    I am sorry guys. i have some minor issues with folks in the states showing up. not participating in our family atmosphere and capitalizing on our stories with out putting any effort in to gathering the details...

    used to be the you got to know a guy through his story time. Magazine writers would court a fellow for information... loe-n-behold the INTERNET. no work required.......


    Blue devil you want something from this Alaskan.... come earn it...Just like every one else does.

    I am sure your a great understanding fellow, with well meaning intentions. but if your going to profit off of us... more then one post is required to get to know us.
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

    meet on face book here

  6. #6
    Member danattherock's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    NC
    Posts
    5,608

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Vince View Post

    when a persons story hits the web, is it okay to publish it after that?


    No, a very clear consent form would have to be signed first. Nothing put on this forum would legally find its way into print anywhere.




    .
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

  7. #7
    Member danattherock's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    NC
    Posts
    5,608

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Vince View Post


    I am sorry guys. i have some minor issues with folks in the states showing up. not participating in our family atmosphere and capitalizing on our stories with out putting any effort in to gathering the details...


    Are you really that offended by a guy asking for stories about using a space blanket?






    .
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

  8. #8

    Default Not so Dan'

    I've seen other forums quoted in the morning paper.

    That said I'll +1 for spend the 10 extra bucks and buy a good sturdy blanket, and don't be afraid to use it. If they still make the one with the hood get that one. I've used a cheap one in summer for a midnight fireline nap... marginal benefit, and it went in the trash later. A couple weeks ago my sleeping bag zipper broke night #1... night #2,#3,#4 I put the space blanket under my sleeping pad, wraped s.b. over busted side of bag, stayed toasty, didn't have to cut my trip short, and now it's back in my pack ready for the next time I need it.

    Who knows... such advise could save some poor, ill prepared soul from freezing in a dime store, plastic trash bag on the side of the road some day.

  9. #9
    Member danattherock's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    NC
    Posts
    5,608

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by need2leave View Post

    I've seen other forums quoted in the morning paper.
    That is unfortunate and I would think illegal. I have been quoted in a few mags and they always emailed me copy of what was going to print and had me give consent. I would be pissed if I found myself in a mag or newspaper and had not given them permission.
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

  10. #10
    Member Buck Nelson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Fairbanks
    Posts
    338

    Default

    I've used the +- 12 oz, reinforced kind many times from bivying in the mountains sheep hunting, as a meat shade, as a rain tarp, as a blanket to get a bit of sleep on the fireline, to keep wolves off meat (worked at least once!) as a dry seat, as a signal to air taxis, etc. Probably the most intense survival situation was on a goat hunt where me and my buddy were way above tree line in the rain and spent a long, chilly, wet October Alaska night waiting for dawn. We had two of the reinforced kind. They were worth their weight in gold that night! Lots of guys here have had similar experiences.

    I agree with Dan, I think some people have unrealistic expectations for what the tiny, thin space blankets can do. They shred easily and while they are better than nothing as a last resort the extra weight of the better quality space blankets is worth it for me in most situations.

  11. #11
    Member Vince's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Fairbanks most the time, Ancorage some of the time,& on the road Kicking Anti's all the time
    Posts
    8,989

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by danattherock View Post
    Are you really that offended by a guy asking for stories about using a space blanket?






    .
    Not really Dan... but a clarification on the profit based mentality would be great.
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

    meet on face book here

  12. #12
    Member danattherock's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    NC
    Posts
    5,608

    Default

    Can't argue with that. After reading need2leave's report about stuff finding its way into print, perhaps I was a bit naive on the issue. Also our new member seems to be MIA
    The two loudest sounds known to man: a gun that goes bang when it is supposed to go click and a gun that goes click when it is supposed to go bang.

  13. #13
    Member KRS's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    362

    Default

    Mine kept me company all night by the fire with wolves howling on Kupreanof Island. Our hunting party missed the tide and spent an unexpected night on a river. I purchased the heavy foil/red sided ones from Cabela's.

    I know the guy is MIA, but I just wanted to say that they are nice to have but nothing is better than a warm night in bed at the cabin

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •