Outdoor survival does not have to be uncomfortable and dangerous. With the proper knowledge and tools, you can build yourself a perfectly comfortable bushcraft raised bed without much hassle.
Even though you may be comfortable sleeping on the ground, there’s a wide range of benefits that raising your bed can provide. Let’s dive into it.
Avoid Sleeping on the Ground
In the wilderness, it can be easy to just gather some leaves, padding and lay it on the ground and call it a day. Here’s why that’s not always a good idea.
To the inexperienced bushcrafter, raising your bed may seem like an unnecessary luxury. A waste of time, because the ground seems good enough. You may think your time is better utilized collecting firewood and purifying drinking water.
All of which are important, but here’s what you may not know.
Bugs or Worse
First up, let us start with the most obvious reason why sleeping on the ground isn’t always advisable. You are out in the wilderness with all kinds of animals and critters lurking around.
You may not be scared or grossed out by bugs, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be cautious. Some of these bugs and critters can be dangerous. Sleeping on the ground makes it unnecessarily easy for anything to crawl into your bed and bite you, causing more trouble than necessary.
While not all bugs and critters will kill you, some bug bites can be extremely painful. They can cause rash and swelling. This can hinder your performance when performing survival tasks.
If you are bushcrafting somewhere where it is known to have snakes, that is even more of red light. Bug bites can be irritating; snake bites can be deadly. Having a bushcraft raised bed significantly reduces your chances of having to deal with these critters when sleeping.
Stay Dry During Flooding
If you’ve built a proper bushcraft shelter, then you’ll likely have some sort of roof or covering that protects you from the elements. That’s a good first step, but what happens when it starts raining?
You may stay dry for a little while, but it doesn’t take much for the ground to become wet. If it’s really coming down, your shelter faces the possibility of flooding. If you or your bed are exposed to water for the entire night, it can spell trouble.
A raised bed is the perfect solution. Even if the ground gets wet or flooded, you’ll be safe because you’re a few feet off the ground.
Nature has a tendency to get cold. Especially when you’re outdoors in the mountains or colder seasons. When the temperature drops, you expose yourself to risks that can be extremely hazardous to your health.
Sleeping on the cold ground makes it more difficult for you to stay warm. Without a good thermal insulator underneath you, you should opt for a raised bed.
Benefits of a Bushcraft Raised Bed
There are plenty of reasons not to sleep on the ground, which we just covered. However, aside from the dangers, there are also some additional benefits to using a raised bushcraft bed. From comfort to added storage, here’s what you should know.
The ground in the wilderness will almost always not be completely flat. Unless you have somehow found the best spot there, sleeping on uneven ground is never comfortable.
With a raised bushcraft bed, you can have a sound night’s sleep on a flatter surface. This will make for a better night’s sleep, keeping you well-rested and energized for the next day.
Depending on the design of the bed you made, you can have some extra storage space to keep all your belongings safe and sound. Some might go for building a bench with storage and turning it into a bed also.
You get some extra storage and also a solid surface to sleep above the ground. If you are going to make something like this, make sure to at least waterproof it somewhat.
If you are above the ground and store your things inside the bench, there might still be some chances of rainwater seeping in and damaging your stuff.
Stay Safe and Dry
Of course, there is the benefit of keeping yourself safe and dry. The wilderness is unpredictable, but the thrill is part of the fun. Having said that, there is no reason to not be proactive in keeping yourself safe and dry.
A raised bed, as mentioned above, will keep you safe from rain. If the ground gets wet, you do not have to worry about the water seeping into your bed. Keep yourself dry to avoid hypothermia.
Hypothermia is a particular one you would like one to avoid at all times. Hypothermia, more often than not, creeps up on you. That is to say, and it is quite difficult to tell you are getting hypothermic until it is too late.
The best course of action here is to just have an elevated bed, and you instantly significantly decrease your chances of it all.
How to Build an Elevated Bed
Alright, so let us take you through a step by step guide on building a raised bed.
- Step 1: Take two poles and place them vertically in a cross pattern against a tree in an ‘A’ pattern. Tie the poles to the tree. Do this two times with two trees side by side each other. You can also have a long piece on the top of the two cross poles. This will act as a support for a roof.
- Step 2: Now you would want to take two pieces and tie it across the two crossed pieces a little higher off the ground. 2 to 2.5 feet above the ground should be fine. This would give you support to put long poles or branches as a base to put grass or borough on top of it.
- Step 3: Lastly, gather some soft grass and place them over the platform you built to make it more comfortable for you to sleep on. You have made yourself a bushcraft raised bed.
If you follow the steps and it really is not that difficult to make yourself a bushcraft raised bed. They are very beneficial and keep you safe and sound in the wilderness.