John's Journal... Entry 113, Day 3
LOST IN DEER COUNTRY
EDITOR'S NOTE: Probably every outdoorsman who has spent hours hunting in unfamiliar places has at some time in his life been lost in the woods. To enable you to navigate more effectively and safely through deer country and to get into these remote locations where big bucks stay, the Night Hawk internet team interviewed some of the nation's leading woods navigators and survivalists.
Even if you have a map and a compass with you, if you don't know where you are or how you've entered the woods, you'll have a difficult time finding your way out of the woods -- unless you can locate a landmark on your map, go to that landmark and then begin to figure your way out of the woods. "Without a map and compass, one of the best ways to get out of deer country is to follow some type of drainage like a creek, a stream, or a river until it intersects a road or a path," Kavalauskas mentions.
advises that a hunter only has to make one of two decisions if he is going
to get out of deer country once he accepts the fact he is lost. "If
you have a compass, you can choose any direction and try to walk a straight
line that hopefully will take you to an area you are familiar with or
to some type of access road, fire lane, or path," Street says. "If
you don't have a compass, you have to prepare to make yourself as visible
as you can. Then you will be found soon. Smoke is one of the most visible
signals a hunter can utilize to let searchers know where he is located.
There are basically two types of smoke: white smoke and dark smoke. If
you are lost in snow country, use dark smoke. If you are lost in heavily
timbered country with no snow, light smoke is a better choice. The wood
you choose to build your fire determines the kind of smoke you will produce.
Wood and plants with plenty of water in them and green leaves generally
produce white smoke. To have dark smoke, burn wood with more resign in
it, such as pine. Go to an open area, build a huge fire, and concentrate
as much smoke as you can in that region."