Navigation: Scouting Techniques

Jessie Krebs

Lesson time 11:24 min

Should you move or stay put in an emergency situation? Jessie explains how to weigh your options and how to always know where you are.

Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars

Topics include: Before You Move, STOP A • Scout Systematically • Move With Point-to-Point Navigation


[MUSIC PLAYING] - Once I'm realizing I'm going along. Life is good. I might be going for a hike. I'm traveling. Maybe I'm not. Maybe I'm taking photos. Maybe I'm a hunter, whatever I'm doing. I'm out there usually by my own choice having a good time, and then something happens to change that. Lightning starts hitting all around me. Snowstorm, fog rolls in. I twist an ankle really bad. I fall off of something. I come across somebody else who's injured, right. So my whole perspective of what's going on can shift and needs to when I truly feel like this is no longer something where I'm going to be able to take care of myself. I think I need help at this moment, and as soon as you realize that, it's best to just stay still. Don't go anywhere. And then we can turn to something called the STOP A acronym. So stop moving. That first word is really important and making our bodies do that can be very difficult. There's a story of Geraldine Margay. She had been planning a hike up the Appalachian Trail for a couple of years, and at one point while she's on the trail, a friend that she's hiking with gets called away. And Gerry decides she's going to have a couple nights out on her own, and the morning she wakes up at this hut. She's been staying there with a couple of women. She takes off down the trail. And she goes a little ways, and it's still pretty early morning. And she steps off the trail to go to the bathroom. And they found her body 2 and 1/2 years later. And when they found her, she was less than a mile from the trail actually. It's where she ended up stopping. But when she wrote in her journal when she was waiting for people to hopefully find her, she said she thinks she wandered two to three miles before she finally stopped. Because of her impetus to move-- I got to go, I got to find the trail again was so strong she couldn't get herself to sit still. So sit down, relax. Take some deep breaths. Use some of the calming techniques we talked about before. Our second letter is T, and this is to think about what's going on. Think about the environment. Think about where you came from, what direction is which. I'm going to try to orient myself and think about, wait a minute, if I'm trying to get back to a trail let's say, well, can I follow my tracks back through the snow and just go that way. So S, Stop, T, Think, now we're going to observe the area. Maybe I stepped off the trail. If I were going to the bathroom and I'm hiking on trail, I probably wouldn't go down the hill, because like people can see me from the trail pretty easy. So I'm more likely to look for places that are going to be a little more concealed, which is likely to be up the hill. So if I know I went uphill to go to the bathroom, again, I can go downhill right to get back to the trail hopefully. So observe what's going on around you. Focus on what we've got right here and start using those resources and make ourselves as saf...

About the Instructor

As a former Air Force SERE (survival, evasion, resistance, and escape) specialist, wilderness survival expert Jessie Krebs spent 30 years preparing people for the unexpected. Now she’s teaching you the mindset and skills to safely explore the outdoors. Learn essential survival techniques—from signaling for help to reading a map, finding water, making shelter, and more—and embark on your next adventure with confidence.

Featured Masterclass Instructor

Jessie Krebs

Wilderness survival expert and former Air Force SERE specialist Jessie Krebs teaches you the skills to explore nature safely and confidently.

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