Solo Survival Eastern Woodland I & II

If you have a fascination with self-sufficiency, the ability to thrive in natural environments, and an eagerness to learn practical skills, these videos are perfect for you. Through the experiences shared in the video, you’ll gain insights into shelter construction, fire-making, foraging for food, trapping, basket weaving, and more.

The practical demonstrations, explanations, and survival tips provided by Tom McElroy offer a valuable learning opportunity for those seeking to develop their survival skills or simply enjoy watching someone navigate and thrive in the wilderness. Whether you’re planning a camping trip, interested in emergency preparedness, or are intrigued by the art of primitive living, this video series will serve as an educational and inspiring resource.

List of the Activities in Both Parts One and Two:

Part One:

  1. Building a shelter using debris and natural materials.
  2. Collecting firewood and starting a fire.
  3. Exploring the surrounding area for resources.
  4. Gathering stinging nettle, ramps, garlic mustard, and red clover for food.
  5. Making a bark bowl for cooking and boiling water.
  6. Fishing using hooks made from bone and catching fish.
  7. Cooking fish by placing them on hot rocks and covering them with leaves.
  8. Making cordage and using it for various purposes.
  9. Building a smoke rack to dry and preserve fish.
  10. Collecting cattail roots and cooking them for food.
  11. Using charcoal to mask scent when handling traps.
  12. Setting up Paiute deadfall traps and snares for small game.
  13. Exploring the trapline and checking the traps.
  14. Demonstrating the process of making primitive tools like drills and awls from rocks.
  15. Constructing a bark basket using hickory bark for sewing.

Part Two:

  1. Reflecting on the shelter’s performance during heavy rain.
  2. Building an overhang to work outside the shelter.
  3. Gathering rotten bark from trees to use as roofing material.
  4. Peeling large strips of bark for roofing.
  5. Tying straight sticks with hickory bark cordage to support the bark panels.
  6. Constructing an A-frame roof using the gathered bark.
  7. Using charcoal to mask scent before handling traps.
  8. Setting up Paiute deadfall traps and attempting to catch small game.
  9. Experiencing challenges with raccoons stealing bait from the traps.
  10. Setting up a fish trap using rocks and sticks to create a funnel.
  11. Catching fish and using a steaming technique to cook them.
  12. Digging and collecting cattail roots for food.
  13. Demonstrating the process of drilling holes in a bark basket using quartz rocks.
  14. Sewing the bark basket together using hickory bark.
  15. Exploring and checking the trapline, facing challenges with sprung traps and stolen bait.
  16. Reflecting on the survival experience and lessons learned.

Please note that this list doesn’t include every detail from the videos but were some highlights I thought worth mentioning. While I’m taking a moment to point out extra bits. This post has taken many forms on this website. Most recently, before becoming this “new” post, it was a video review post that didn’t have much information.

Over the years, I have found a few people on YouTube who show different aspects of survival skills and do a great job of explaining things in a simple way. Tom is one of those people.

Part 1

Wilderness survival for a week focused primarily on the Eastern Woodlands. I hope to feature more videos that focus on different regions as I find them. If you know of some other good ones, leave a comment so your fellow journeymen can take a look.

Part 2


I was forged in the wilderness and have seen dangers nobody knows. I hope you will not need the information I provide, but learning it could save your life.

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