10 Best Survival Books | December 2016

10 Best Survival Books
Best Mid-Range
Best High-End
Best Inexpensive
We spent 40 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top options for this wiki. Perfect for campers, hikers and all outdoors adventurers, reading one or more of these survival books may make the difference between a harrowing trip into the wild and coming home safely. Skip to the best survival book on Amazon.
"The Total Outdoorsman Manual 10th Anniversary Edition" is a great all-around primer on how to thrive when in the wild. While it only contains sub-sections on survival, the overall knowledge within will all be of help in the wild.
  • great gift for outdoor enthusiast
  • detailed info on wilderness cooking
  • published by trusted "field & stream"
Brand The Total Outdoorsman M
Model pending
Weight 2.1 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0
Food, water, and first aid are useless if you put yourself at great risk by not knowing how to respond to weather in the wild. "Extreme Weather 214 Tips for Surviving Nature's Worst" lets you know how to read the skies and stay safe.
  • must have for mountain camping
  • chief author is pro meteorologist
  • predication and survival tips included
Brand Extreme Weather
Model pending
Weight 12.6 ounces
Rating 3.8 / 5.0
The book "Bushcraft: Outdoor Skills and Wilderness Survival" is more of a guide to great adventure than a guide for pure survival. It contains information on topics ranging from starting a great fire to making a shelter.
  • step-by-step wood cutting info
  • well-written and enjoyable
  • specifically geared to canadian forests
Brand Lone Pine Publishing
Model pending
Weight 16 ounces
Rating 4.1 / 5.0
Long-term wilderness survival is dependent on securing enough food. "The Hunting & Gathering Survival Manual: 221 Primitive & Wilderness Survival Skills" is there to help when your supplies run out far from the grocery store.
  • detailed information on myriad traps
  • useful guide for safe foraging
  • used by boy scouts & law enforcement
Brand Weldon Owen
Model pending
Weight 1.9 pounds
Rating 3.6 / 5.0
It's impossible to survive harsh conditions without a shelter. Thus "The Complete Survival Shelters Handbook: A Step-by-Step Guide to Building Life-saving Structures" is a must-have for the adventurer headed out on a multi-day trek.
  • blends native skills from uk, us, beyond
  • basic lean-to through durable stone hut
  • includes information on bedding, comfort
Brand The Complete Survival S
Model pending
Weight 12.6 ounces
Rating 3.9 / 5.0
"The Boy's Book of Adventure: The Little Guidebook for Smart and Resourceful Boys" is a fine way to introduce youngsters to the preparation and knowledge required for safe outings into the wild. The book is fun and informative.
  • includes guide to insects and animals
  • rich color illustrations
  • for fun and not a true survival guide
Brand Barron's Educational Se
Model pending
Weight 1.5 pounds
Rating 4.3 / 5.0
"The Ultimate Survival Manual: 333 Skills that Will Get You Out Alive" is a great book to have read and thoroughly digested before you head for the hills. At 256 pages, it's far too bulky to carry along, but you can carry its info.
  • contains information on urban survival
  • available in a deluxe hardcover edition
  • very well reviewed by users
Brand Simon & Schuster
Model pending
Weight 2.1 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0
Be ready for "any climate, for any situation" thanks to the SAS Survival Guide. The knowledge and techniques contained in this book were gained during the author's 26 years with Britain's elite Special Air Services.
  • includes real case studies
  • pairs with sas survival guide iphone app
  • very low priced book
Brand SAS Survival Guide
Model pending
Weight 7.2 ounces
Rating 4.6 / 5.0
The book "Bushcraft 101: A Field Guide to the Art of Wilderness Survival" is an absolute best-seller in the wilderness survival category because it is well-written, covers a range of topics, and does so in pithy detail.
  • author is co-owner of pathfinder school
  • blends age-old wisdom and modern tech
  • great tool-making guide
Brand Adams Media
Model pending
Weight 10.4 ounces
Rating 4.7 / 5.0
When injury or illness strikes in the wild, there's no calling 9-1-1. That means having the book Field Guide to Wilderness Medicine might be the difference between proper first aid and treatment and a life-threatening issue.
  • drawings and photos for quick comparison
  • contains multiple step-by-step guides
  • written by team of medical doctors
Brand Mosby
Model pending
Weight 1.5 pounds
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

Buyer's Guide

The Power Behind A Survival Book

Sleeping inside dead camels to escape the elements, or eating giant spiders for sustenance does not always merit your own TV show, like Bear Grylls, but you can learn similar skills and apply them in the real world to better prosper in the wild, and lessen the likelihood of becoming a SAR (Search and Rescue) statistic.

Studying survival skills with a top-grade manual can end up saving your life if ever faced with a dire circumstance in a secluded area. You never know when that spontaneous moment might strike, but when it does, you sure will be prepared.

That's not to say that survival books strictly lean towards the life or death scenario spectrum; these books in general are geared towards educating people on what to expect in nature, and how to use nature as a resource. When you're unsure of where or how to setup your campsite, or need to locate an edible root, or need to produce a compass using the accessories on you, survival books will typically have the answers for you, or if anything, guide you to find a suitable solution.

While not everyone will find themselves in an actual survival-based setting, having the knowledge to camp with little resources, and survive, becomes a reward of independence. Survivalist skills teach you determination and resourcefulness that help you succeed in everyday situations, because as they say, "the more prepared you are, the less scared you are."

Are All Survival Books The Same?

Not all survival books are created equally. Some are more area specific rather than composing of just tips and guides. These may include books pertaining to strictly building shelters, or how to locate and facilitate medicinal plants. On which book to chose relies solely on your wants and needs, and maybe even your learning style.

You can expect to find some form of illustrations in your survival book. Many are colored for easily identifying wilderness plants and animals you're likely to come across. Illustrations in color also help to avoid miscommunication when you are designing a trap that could lead to a failed attempt or injury, for example. If you are beginner survivalist, you also want a book that has been written in layman's terms for easy understanding.

And if the book has been written by an actual survivalist specialist, the better. Generally these people have dedicated a large portion of their life studying nature and learning to live off the land. Their first hand accounts can help prepare you for the unexpected which can in the end help you meet your survival goals.

A Compressed History on the Survival Book

Long before Bear Grylls reached every household, and prior to publications of survival books, key survival ideas were passed via word of mouth, mostly exaggerated, about men living in the wild. Perhaps you've heard of a few household names, including the unsung western hero Kit Carson, the Appalachian frontiersman Daniel Boone, and the California bear tamer himself, John "Grizzly" Adams.

Though these men surveyed America during the 1800s western expansion, there was no real survivalist movement until the 1930s, when the threat of nuclear war first became a reality.

Even then, the first real survivalist books didn't hit shelves until thirty years later, in the late 1960s, when the rivalry between the United States and the Soviet Union seemed palpable. But, even then again, these survival books were heavily influenced by the possibility of a complete break down of society, rather than the leisure of enjoying nature.

Such examples are seen with Harry Browne, who first started giving seminars on how people could survive a monetary collapse in 1967. After that, Don Stephens, regarded as a founding father of modern survivalism, wrote many books pertaining to learning to cope and live in the world if disaster would strike.

During the 1970s, the survivalism movement took on a new flavor where it focused on the oil crisis of 1973. A lot of the survivalist reading material of this time focused on food storage. The 1980s saw a revival of the rivalry between the US and Russia over the nuclear arms race, and as a result, Ragnar Benson suggested living off the land in rural areas in 1982 with his popular book "Live off the Land in the City and Country."

In the present day, many TV shows have capitalized on the survivalist beliefs at the expense of reality stars, which in turn fuels the popularity of survivalist books. If there's an end to the fade, it's not in sight just yet.

Statistics and Editorial Log

Paid Placements

Wiki Granular Update & Revision Log

help support our research

Patreonlogoorange psj5g7Wiki ezvid low poly earth xdypeb

Last updated on December 15, 2016 by multiple members of the ezvid wiki editorial staff

Our professional staff of writers and researchers have been creating authoritative product recommendations and reviews since 2011. Many of our wikis require expert maintenance, and are authored by individual members of our editorial staff. However, this wiki is currently maintained by multiple members of the ezvid wiki team.

Thanks for reading the fine print. About the Wiki: We don't accept sponsorships, free goods, samples, promotional products, or other benefits from any of the product brands featured on this page, except in cases where those brands are manufactured by the retailer to which we are linking. For our full ranking methodology, please read about us, linked below. The Wiki is a participant in associate programs from Amazon, Walmart, Ebay, Target, and others, and may earn advertising fees when you use our links to these websites. These fees will not increase your purchase price, which will be the same as any direct visitor to the merchant’s website. If you believe that your product should be included in this review, you may contact us, but we cannot guarantee a response, even if you send us flowers.