3 Basic Types of Fish Traps, and How To Build Fish Traps for Wilderness Survival

 Types of Fish Traps

I bring basic gear with me when I go hiking.  Some of the survival gear that I have, allows me to actively fish.  If I am going camping in an area with water, but I can almost drive to the location, I will also bring some basic traps to sit in the car… just in case.

I prefer not to use the fishing line and hooks that I bring as my sole source of food.  This is a very bad idea.

Think about this in business terms.  In business, it is smart to create a structure that makes money for you “while you sleep”.  This means it will function and bring in income without your direct hourly input, not that you don’t have to put work into it in the beginning.

In survival, you have to think about this as well.  Do you want to trade your hours of productive time for food, or do you want to set up multiple systems that allow the food to come to you, while you are doing something else.  This something else could be doing another type of food procurement, building a shelter, or making a fire.

Let’s do this in our fishing.  We can build passive fish traps to work for us.

I am teaching you how to build three basic fish traps, both fresh and saltwater.  Here are the three basic traps that I like to consider when in wilderness.


Basket Fish Trap


basket fish trap

Basket Fish Trap

So this is the closest I will ever come to underwater basket weaving.  There are many ways to build this trap, but I have a particular way that I like to put them together.

First, you will need lots of green supple twigs or sapplings that can bend.  Depending on the size of the trap, you should lash the main cage together about a foot apart down the length of the trap.  You want to bring the narrow end of the basket as close together as possible to keep from having to make a ter to cover it.  On the wide end, the entrance, you will ensure that your lashing is at least 3-6 inches away from the opening.

Now build a cone out of twigs that will be slightly wider at the base than the main trap.  It needs to be narrow enough at the tip to let fish in, but not back out.

Bait the trap, place the cone on top of the opening with the tip pointing inward the main trap, and lash the two main pieces together.  Consider how you will mark this trap to visit it later.

Shore Fish Trap, Pool Fish Trap, Current Fish Trap


Shore fish trap

One of the easier traps to build in the shore trap is the shore trap.  All you essentially have to do is find a spot along the shoreline that you can build it in relatively shallow water.  It is best to do this trap where there is moving water, either by river current or by tidal current.

fish trap

To build this, you first will grab a bunch of sticks and build three sides of a box, with the opening facing the inflow of current.  The length of the sticks should be such that they stick well above the water.  Once you have the box built and the sticks are close enough together to keep fish from escaping, you need to funnel the fish or sealife into the trap.  So you will build a wide V shape funnel from more sticks in a close proximity, just like the sticks that make up the box.  You want the V to be MUCH wider than the box so you can funnel and trap more food.  The point of the V needs to be open and should be opening into the

This will allow fish to enter the trap, but not leave it.  You can bait it as well if in a river.

Tidal Flat Fish Trap

Tidal Flat Fish Trap

Tidal Flat Fish Trap

You first want to find great location for capturing sea life on shore.  You want to choose your trap location based on the high tide, but build the trap at low tide for ease and for best chance of capture.  Choose natural pools of the water, which means rock pools in rocky shores, pools that generally occur on the surface of a reef, or sandbars and their ditches on sandy shores.  This will ensure that you have the best chance of accumulating food and that you will use the natural flow and pooling in the area.

Build the trap with stones.  Create a low wall that looks a little like a crescent moon with the tips of the moon pointing away from the main body of water.  This will be an extremely long trap to cover much ground.  The wall should extend outward INTO the water.

As tide rolls in, it will bring fish that approach the shoreline and are swimming parallel to it.  As the water recedes, the fish will get trapped by the stone wall.  Generally no bait is required here.

If you are in freshwater, or saltwater; ponds, rivers, bays, or oceans; there is a trap that is suitable to your needs.  Traps are extremely beneficial since you can free up your time for building more traps, a shelter, a fire, or hunting other game.  Always find ways to automate the accumulation of food to raise your chances of survival.


I bring basic gear with me when I go hiking. Some of the survival gear that I have, allows me to actively fish. If I am going camping in an area with water, but I can almost drive to the location, I will also bring some basic traps to sit in the car… just in case.

I prefer not to use the fishing line and hooks that I bring as my sole source of food. This is a very bad idea.Types of Fish Traps

020 Primitive Skills: How to Build Wilderness Survival Shelter


I show you one of my favorite primitive skills by explaining how to build a primitive wilderness survival shelter. Lean-to, A Frame, Debris, Hammock, etc.


  • Prepper Podcast Call-In line: (978) KNOWS-IT or (978) 566-9748

    • No calls today.  I really like your calls, so give me your questions

  • I added a bitcoin donate button to both my blog and podcast

  • I need volunteers for testing my budget, email me and tell me what your ultimate, but realistic goal is in your email.  Budget not finished, but almost there.


A-Frame Shelter

  • Cordage between 2 trees as the brace

  • A frame as center support

  • 2 A-Frames on each end and tied off at both ends

  • Poncho, Tarp, Emergency Blanket, Lashing boughs

Lean-To Shelter

  • Very quick

  • Usually not very warm

  • Some may be built for warmth

  • Ridge Lean to (looks like an L)

  • Dual Lean to


Debris Shelter

  • A-frame on only one side

  • other side on ground

  • cross-members, then boughs of spruce/pine

  • then boughs of broadleaves, tarp or snow

Hammock Shelter

  • Great for hot dry climates

  • Hammocks

  • Tarps without the holes

  • Tarps with holes

Cave Style Snowdrift Shelter

  • Snowdrift, not cornice

    • rocks or sticks for locating it

  • Build Entrance

    • Away from wind

    • Archway

    • 2-3 ft deep

  • Transitional area

    • 2-3 feet further in

    • also dig up now

    • must keep above 18 in snow over this and den

  • Den

    • dome shapped

    • vent holes

    • shelves

    • bedding and drainage

Snow Trench

  • best on slope

  • dig trench 4-5 feet deep

    • Longer than body by a foot

  • sleeping area

    • foot above trench bottom

    • foot of head space in area


  • Pine and Spruce Boughs as bedding

    • Main loss of heat is through the ground

  • Snow (tarp)

  • How to insulate when in a hammock?

Ways to brace your cross-members

  • lash each cross-member in figure 8

  • weave through the cross-members… still must lash the end-members


  • Utility rope

  • Paracord

  • Vines

Important take aways:

  • Have a tarp, poncho, emergency blankets, lots of paracord

  • in snow always use your hands to finish off the snow

  • angle snow so you dont get dripped on all night

  • Always insulate on the ground

Clever Survivalist Posts:

Video: Simple DIY Alcohol Beer or Soda Can Stove (No Penny)

Video: Simple DIY Alcohol Beer or Soda Can Stove (No Penny)

Video: Simple DIY Alcohol Beer or Soda Can Stove (No Penny)

Have you ever wanted to have a small portable camp stove?  I have been watching videos and reading blogs to see how a lot of people are making alcohol based camp stoves.

I already know where to buy these things, but I am a hands-on person, so if I can find a simple and cheap way of building one, I am going to try it.

Most people that are building these things have extremely complex ways to do so, so I decided that if it has to be that complicated, it’s probably not worth building.

The alcohol burner that my design is semi-based off of has a burn time of 8 minutes or so of hot blue flame.

I want to stress that this is a simplistic makeshift design for this alcohol burning stove when you watch it.

On a video I will show you a trial and error on a simple DIY alcohol stove made from a soda can or beer can. I tried to make it more simple. See how it turned out.

Here is my video on the stove:

This is NOT the last time I will be visiting this project.

Get my free “how-to” on reading topographical maps or contour maps.  Just provide your email below, and I will send you the link to it, along with just a few wilderness survival related emails.



005 Discover Best Cheap, Outdoor Hobby Ideas for Survivalism



Discover Best Cheap, Outdoor Hobby Ideas for Survivalism

Discover Best Cheap, Outdoor Hobby Ideas for Survivalism

We talk today about many different outdoor hobbies.  We talk about outdoor & cheap hobby ideas that are the best to keep you prepared in survivalism.

Blog post on this subject: Great Hobbies for Survivalists

The hobbies mentioned are:

  • Mountain Biking
  • Geocaching
  • Trail Running
  • Hiking
  • Camping

I also explain some base equipment needed for getting started in each of the hobbies.

Mountain Biking

  • A Helmet
  • Bike
  • Hydration Pack


  • Computer
  • Pen & Paper
  • Camera

Trail Running

  • Trail Running Shoes
  • A few water bottles


  • Hiking Shoes or Boots
  • The correct pack


  • Tents
  • Sleeping Bags
  • Sleeping Mat for Heat retention.

Recommended Gear for All Activities

  • GPS
  • Map & Compass
  • Lighters