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Fish Spear

A fish spear is nothing more than a spear with multiple points. The idea behind it being that as the number of points on your spear increase so do your chances of securing a meal. Making a fish spear is really quite simple, all you need are a few simple supplies. You will need to locate a nice stout green hardwood sapling approximately 1 - 2 inches thick and 6 - 7ft long, two smaller twigs approximately " in diameter, and some cordage, I usually use paracord, but you can also use vine, flexible roots, or willow branch splits.

We are going to make the thick part of the stick the business end. Let us look at the spear from the standpoint of physics; the equation is F=MA. That is Force = Mass x Acceleration. Which just means if you quickly thrust the heavy point of the spear into the game, it will do more damage than doing the same thing with the thin end.

Now using your survival knife, split the heavy end down through the center about 8" or so. Now rotate the stick 90, and split the stick one more time. If you look at it from the end, you should have an X shape with each tine being roughly the same size. Now is the time to sharpen each tine. You do not need to bring it to final sharpness yet, but anything you do not will make it easier later. It should be noted that you could have also sharpened the stick prior to splitting it. This is not usually the method I take, as I have had trouble with getting it split perfectly after sharpening the spear first.

You now slide one of the twigs down inside one of the splits you made in the spear. This will cause the tines to spread out, making a more viable spear end. Once you have one of them slid down about 6 - 8 in, slide the other one down between the remaining tines.

Technically, your spear is complete, and could take fish, frogs, and small game, but I like to take it one or two steps farther. At this point, I like to trim the spreader twigs even with the spear. I then wrap cordage around the split ends, making sure to secure the spreader twigs in place quite well. Taking the time for this extra step will ensure your spear lasts longer, and will not fail when you need it by becoming tangles in nearby obstacles.

Taking a frog with my new fish spear.

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Revised: 05/11/16 Living Afield