By Aleksander Mell, Viru Vanemskaudid
In preparation for their upcoming survival hike at Kotkajärve this summer, our Toronto Eesti Vanemskaudid started to train and gather skills needed to survive three days in the bush. The first of our training weekends was held at Seedrioru Summer Camp and lead by Leaders Eric Tiisler, David Hogg, Andres Jeeger, Markus Jeeger, and Robbie Cyrwus. We arrived at Seedrioru on Friday April 27 so that the activities and survival training would commence early Saturday morning. Participating in this event were Vanemskaudid Tommy Tiisler, Aleksander Meusi, Aleksander “Sass” Chandler-Long, Erik Kreem, Aleksander Mell and Markus Hogg.
At around 8:30 AM on Saturday we awoke to start preparing our first meal of the day. To make the experience as close to the real experience as possible we had to cook outside over a fire and created our meal using dehydrated foods. On the menu were dehydrated pancakes, dehydrated omelets, oatmeal, and instant coffee or tea. Following breakfast we prepared their daypacks and set out for an information/ survival lesson taught by Eric Tiisler and David Hogg. During this session we learned about the best gear, food, and anything we would need for an overnight hike in the wilderness.
Following our training lesson it was time to put our skills to the test in an orienteering competition. We were split up into two groups, given compasses, maps, a start position, a direction in which to travel in and a rough distance calculation. Our task was to go into the woods using the materials and information given and find two strategically placed firecrackers. Upon finding the firecrackers we were to light them off to notify the leaders they had found them. We were given two hours to find each location and return back to the Seedrioru kitchen where we then started to prepare lunch. For lunch we fried up an assortment of canned meats, chili, and the Estonian favorite “sauerkraut” (hapukapsad).
The rest of the afternoon was relaxed, and the skaudid did what they do best. Lifting logs. and firing weapons. In the early evening it was time to start cooking the last and final meal of the day. This menu was extraordinary. They were given venison, a full rabbit, some canned snails, onions, wild rice, mushrooms and bannock mix (type of bread cooked over a fire}). The skaudid displayed their knowledge of cooking by marinating the venison and rabbit with various different rubs and mixtures. While few of the boys prepared food, the rest repaired their fire for cooking. When everything was ready we brought out the food and started to prepare our meal. First course, was venison. “This is some of the best meat i have ever tasted,” Aleksander explained after his first piece. “Truly like tribal brothers (hõimuvelled) cooking red meat over the fire” Tommy said as they shared the delicious meat. Finally was the rabbit. Originally we were going to slowly roast the rabbit on a spit, but for time's sake, we grilled it over the fire. Despite the change in plans this rabbit was amazing. To finish off the night was a much needed saun then we sat around a fire while cooking some of their bannock while watching a few “Man vs. Wild” episodes by the iconic Bear Grylls.
See also https://www.facebook.com/perma...
Survival Training at Seedrioru (3)