Plastic bottles are everywhere. You can find them in the street, in the forest, on the beach, and elsewhere. While anyone who cares about the natural world knows that isn’t a good thing, survivalists know that the world is not always the prettiest place, and we must do what we can with what we’ve got. The ability to “make something out of nothing” is critical for those who understand that worst-case scenarios strike when you least expect them to. It’s for this reason that being able to craft simple tools and necessities out of what’s around is so important. Here are a few simple ways you can make plastic bottles into life-saving survival tools that can make all the difference in a true survival situation.
Perhaps one of the best known “survival hacks” out there when it comes to utilizing plastic bottles, is the fish trap. By cutting off the top portion of the bottle, then inverting it with the rest of the bottle, you can create a solid fish trap. Fish swim in but can’t find their way out. While this isn’t going to catch large fish, it is effective in terms of catching minnows that can be eaten or used as bait to catch bigger fish.
If you find yourself in a survival situation near still water, an empty water bottle can serve as an excellent bobber. By attaching fishing line and a hook to it, one can even use the bottle to float bait further out than you can cast, should you find yourself in a situation without a fishing rod.
If you’ve ever had to survive in a desert environment where high winds and sandstorms are an issue, you know how important it is to have eye protection. Sand grains at high speed can damage your eyesight, temporarily and sometimes permanently. By cutting the bottom portions of two plastic bottles and affixing them to corage such as 550 cord, you can create a makeshift set of goggles to get you through the storm.
Similar to the plastic bag fire-starting method, a plastic bottle can be used in correlation with the sun in order to spark dry tinder. Simply fill the bottle with water and focus a concentrated point of sunlight onto your tinder. It is important to note that this is a fire starting technique, intended to produce the initial embers that you then must nurse in order to create a legitimate fire.