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About Issue 79
“Spring is nature’s way of saying, Let’s Party!” – Robin Williams
As the days lengthen and the first green shoots begin to tentatively venture through the woodland floor I always feel a growing sense of excitement that everything is once again poised and ready to explode into life. Very soon the woods and hedgerows will become vibrant with the sights, sounds and scents of the natural world.
The seasonal cycles would have meant everything to our hunter gatherer ancestors. Their lives were as intertwined with the natural world as that of any other animal, and the coming of spring would have held both practical and religious significance to a people whose very lives depended upon the seasonal harvest and hunt. After a winter without fresh vegetation their bodies would have craved the vitamins and minerals that abound in this early part of the year, when plants are at their most vigorous.
Even though the technology of the 21st century allows us to buy strawberries in February and pineapples from Costa Rica, I still feel a primal desire to get outside and eat as many fresh seasonal wild greens as I can get my hands on at this time of year. My absolute favourite spring time recipe is Wild Garlic and Nettle Soup (see page 8). Do you have a favourite? I’d really like to hear all your top spring time wild food recipes.
On the subject of food, Ed Stafford will be looking at the importance of nutrition for survival (page 68), while Laura Bingham asks whether a mother should leave her child (temporarily of course) in order to pursue her own goals and adventures (page 32).
Lofty Wiseman prepares for the worst (and hopes for the best; page 64), and Torbjörn Selin heads out with his daughter to climb Sweden’s highest peak (page 26).
Ben and Lois Orford talk about those delightful Finnish puukkos (page 10).
Paul Kirtley continues his look at winter skills (page 74), while Rich Harpham sets out on foot to explore Alaska in winter (page 85).
Tim Gent reminisces about his canoe and walking trip in Sápmi last summer (page 44), and Marc Cox looks at splitting green timber (page 56).
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