Bear Grylls’ Seven Adventure and Survival Activities Kids Can Try This Summer


The new Go Wild guide from Bear Grylls Survival Academy (BGSA) and cereal bar brand Nature Valley offers inspiring activities and challenges to get families more outdoors and enjoying nature. All activities are free and available at the house or at the local park.

Try to look for food

Fall in love with nature by picking herbs from your own garden, patio or kitchen, or look outside to try and find wild plants growing.

To prepare for foraging, you will need a basket and gloves before heading to your local park, field, wood or nature reserve.

Any of these could grow nearby:

■ Purslane — also known as giant hogweed, purslane is a leafy green plant that can be used as a herb and salad vegetable.

■ Raspberries — wild raspberries can grow in hedgerows from mid-August and may be smaller than store-bought ones, but are just as tasty.

■ Blackberries — similar to raspberries but darker purple-black in color, they will also be ripe and ready to pick by mid-summer.

Learn to read and create maps

Avoid getting lost by mastering the art of cartography and learning how to draw and create maps.

It can help you map out your local nature spot or create a fun game where you can hide messages in the park for your friends to find later.

Most maps today are printed on computers, but you can try making one the traditional way, grabbing a compass, paper, and pens and heading outside.

Start by carefully mapping and naming the landmarks you see, such as ponds, interesting or strange trees, and places where certain animals live.

You can create a general map with physical landmarks or try a thematic map with a specific theme based on your friends.

tell the time of the sun

Make a sundial and a compass to see where you are and the time.

■ A long stick to use as a central shadow marker.

■ Some rocks to mark north, south, east and west.

■ A watch, as a timer.

■ Sun.


1. Place your stick in the ground and mark the end of the shadow with a stone.

2. Wait 30 minutes then mark the end of the shadow with the second stone.

3. The first rock will be your west point and the second is your point. Now mark north and south. Here you have a compass.


It’s always fun to build your own den in the wild

It’s always fun to build your own den in the wild

Make the ultimate lair

A simple and fun thing to do in your backyard, at a picnic, while camping – or even in your bedroom – here’s a simple guide from BGSA’s den masters on how to make the best den.


■ A sheet.

■ Two trees or structures at home to which you can securely tie the leaf.

■ Rope.

■ Decorations of your choice.


1. Select a suitable area between two trees or points for your den. If you’re outdoors, check for loose branches, then run the rope between the trees.

2. Drape the sheet over the rope, then weigh down each corner with a rock, log, or something heavy to hold it down.

3. Inside your structure, add blankets, leaves, or anything else to make the den cozy and fun inside.


Learning to tie knots is an important skill in nature

Learning to tie knots is an important skill in nature

Learning to tie knots is an important skill in nature

Learn the essential knots

Knotting is an essential part of outdoor adventures, whether you’re building a camp, tying your shoelaces or flying a kite. Practice these three knots at home until you can master them:

■ Overhand Knot – this is the easiest of all and what our hands would automatically do if we were handed a piece of rope or string and told to tie a knot in it. One key thing to know about this one, if you tie it around something it can be undone easily. Thus, this is primarily used as a ‘stopper knot’ – useful for preventing the end of a rope from slipping into a hold or to prevent the ends of a rope from unraveling.

■ Bowline Knot — a BGSA favorite and used by adventurers around the world, the bowline knot is a loop at the end of a cord that won’t slip or tighten. Also known as the “king of the knots”, the bowline is perfect for building a hammock at home, making dens, or setting up rope swings.

■ Clove Hitch — this is a quick and memorable knot that can be used to attach a rope to a pole or carabiner. The capstan is one of the most common knots used by scouts.

Test your knowledge with wild camping

Now that you’ve mastered these survival skills and a challenging summer, end the vacation with an exciting camping trip.

Even if it’s just outside in your backyard, it’s time to put what you’ve learned into practice and gain experience as a true adventurer.

Get to know the sky

The clouds are full of all kinds of hidden animals; you just need to watch them carefully. To try your hand at being a zookeeper, pick a nice spot in the local garden or park with a picnic and try to spot as many animal-shaped clouds as you can.

Indispensable to take a notebook and a pen or pencil to be able to draw them too. If you’re waiting until you know a little more about clouds, they can also be used to try to predict the weather.

Just look to the sky to identify these five formations:

■ Cumulus: clusters of detached clouds composed of water droplets that form low and indicate fair weather. Have flat bases and heaped tops and look dazzling white in the sun.

■ Altocumulus: Appears as cloud rolls or layered patches in the mid-level region. Commonly found between warm and cold fronts, so it can precede bad weather.

■ Cirrus: Detached, wispy clouds formed from ice crystals. The wavy appearance is caused by wind movement. May indicate a change in weather. Also known as mare’s tail.

■ Cirrocumulus: High sets of clouds made up of ice crystals that never cast a shadow. Usually seen after rain, indicating improving weather.

■ Cumulonimbus: Known as thunderclouds, they have low dark bases and extend for several kilometers into the atmosphere. Produce brief heavy showers, and occasionally lead to hail and lightning.

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