Shelter, Fire and Water will Help You Make Ready to Survive

Panteao Productions has come out with a couple more DVD’s in their Make Ready to Survive series. I reviewed the first three videos, which you can read about here. I’ll discuss one today and another soon. Shelter, fire and water are covered in the DVD I’m reviewing today.


Shelter, Fire, Water

Dave Canterbury of the Pathfinder School is the instructor in this presentation. He begins by giving his background as an instructor of primitive skills. Then he moves right into the subject matter.

It doesn’t get any more basic than shelter, fire and water, especially when you’re in an outdoor survival situation. Dave makes it all look so easy. It’s good to be able to learn from such a practiced expert. But be advised. He goes through his material quickly and concisely. Be ready to take notes, or watch the video several times to be sure you’re getting the most out of what he has to say.


Make Ready to Survive - Shelter, Fire, Water



Shelter topics include…
  • Knots
  • Cover
  • Hammock
  • Small hut
  • Long term hut
Early on he reviews the 10 items he discussed in his Panteao Productions video on survival kits. (It’s one I’ve reviewed previously.)

As with Panteao’s other videos, demonstrations are shot close up so you can see what’s happening. This is definitely helpful when Dave shows how to make knots. Those knots and plenty of cordage are necessary for making the ridge line for a tarp shelter.

Dave recommends having several items on hand in your pack for making a shelter. I’m amazed by all of the things he brings up which you and I might not think of, unless we’ve perhaps had some experience in wilderness survival. For example, he makes a good case for carrying plastic stakes. You don’t want to create them from branches. Why use your knife, valuable time and energy if you don’t have to?

He demonstrates something as simple as how to shape your tarp shelter to take best advantage of conduction, convection and radiation from your fire.

The huts shown are for cold weather environments. The small hut is a debris hut. The larger hut is meant for long term use if you’re going to be stuck in the woods for days or weeks.



The bulk of the video deals with fire. Topics include…
  • 3 Stages of fuel
  • Natural tinder
  • Things to carry
  • Bed and fire lay
  • One stick fire
  • Fire with duct tape
  • Fire with lighter
  • Magnifying glass
  • Bow and drill
Fire is critical for so many reasons, such as providing heat for warmth, cooking,disinfecting water, and making a signal, to name a few. The sections about fire are quite thorough with everything you wanted to know, and then some.

Heat, oxygen and fuel are the three things necessary for a good fire. Dave describes tinder and kindling to get a fire started and keeping it going. Then he discusses the instruments he recommends having in your pack for making a fire.

Processing your tinder is key for getting a fire going. More surface area and smaller pieces help. Dave discusses the difference between a bird’s nest and a kindle bundle. The bird’s nest is handy for starting a fire with an ember.

When you hear the term “one stick fire” you may be baffled, remembering the notion you’ve heard somewhere that it takes two sticks to light a fire. But that’s not in the picture here. There’s a way to make a fire using a certain size of a log, and you’d better be ready to do plenty of cutting. Dave’s demonstration is fascinating. It’s instructive to know how to manipulate the wood.

Are you curious about duct tape and starting a fire? It has to do with turning the tape’s fibers into tinder. Dave says this is something you should practice before you need to do it in an emergency situation. Hopefully you’ll have other resources available so you won’t have to do this.

What do you do if your cigarette lighter gets wet or is out of fluid? Dave shows what to do in each case. I’m sure it’s not as easy as he makes it look.

I was interested in the magnifying glass demonstration because I remember burning holes in leaves and paper with a magnifier when I was a kid. Perhaps you’ve done it, too. I carry a couple of magnifiers in my pocket at all times because I use them regularly for their original intended use. The goal when starting a fire is to take advantage of the sun and use the glass to ignite an ember.

The last thing you want to have to do in an emergency is start a fire with a bow and drill. But Dave shows how to do it for informational purposes. It’s not something I’d want to master just so I can show off wilderness survival prowess. An awfully lot of work goes into a bow drill fire, just to start an ember. And then you have to get the fire going from that.

Several times during the video Dave mentions whether an activity requires expenditure of energy and burning calories, which you’ll need to replace later. It’s also quite evident that you’ll need a good knife or saw for doing the things he shows us.

After each of Dave’s demonstrations I marveled at how he actually got a fire going. One thing’s for sure. The possibilities do exist. But I hope I’m never in a situation where I have to make a bow drill fire or a one stick fire. It’s far better to have more efficient means on hand for starting a flame.

Two major points are evident from this video. Preparation is key to starting any fire. And don’t be in a hurry.



Water related topics include…
  • Coyote well
  • Boiling
The object of making the coyote well is to clarify water you draw into a hole you dig near a water source. It won’t be completely filtered, but it will be better than the water that comes directly from the pond or lake itself.

Boiling is the most effective way to get potable water. Just bring it to a rolling boil. Letting it boil longer wastes water through evaporation and uses your fuel. And, of course, in order to boil water, you’ll need a fire. It all connects together.


Dress for Survival

Near the end of the video is a brief chapter on clothes. Dave shares some simple tips regarding clothing in both cold and hot weather conditions, using the letters from the words “cold” and “hot” for memory devices.


How You Can Get This Presentation

These Panteo Productions videos are top quality. They’re professionally done and worth having in your survival library collection. Not only can you get them in DVD form, but you can subscribe to view the material online. You can even access it on your mobile device.

Panteao Productions also gives subscribers discounts and a 100% money back guarantee. So you have nothing to lose.

Find the Make Ready to Survive series by going to

Have you viewed any of this video series yet? Why not leave a comment and let others know your thoughts.


Author: John Wesley Smith

John Wesley Smith writes and podcasts from his home in Central Missouri. His goal is to help preppers as he continues along his own preparedness journey.