Thursday, August 20, 2015

Survival: Kidnapped by a Serial Killer

Today on a page called Brolo Nation on Facebook, I posted a survival challenge of the following:

"Survival Challenge: You wake up on a mountainside disoriented from chloroform. There is a note with you that reads: "You have 10 minutes to get your wits about you and start running. Let the hunt begin." Assuming you are of decent health and mobility, what do you do? (You are starting in a wooded area, but not all of the mountain is woods)
For you smartassess out there, you've been picked clean of electronics or knives or anything of the sort. You don't even have your wallet.
Edit for excellent question: What are you wearing? Shirt, jeans, shoes (you may assume you have laces) you may assume you are wearing a belt. And it is summer."

I was asked about a few more points and I will add that you wake up at about 10 am. You are surrounded by trees and the woods extend to about 100 yards down the mountain. To your left is open field type terrain and to the right is jagged rocky terrain (but also clear) Terrain merges at the 100 yard mark and mixes together. There is no guaranteed answer for this so the correct answers are those that keep you alive the longest. People didn't die on the discussion thread immediately, followed more of the points I'm about to post.

First of all, 10 minutes to shake off chemical effects is a bitch. Even so, you have to try and take in your surroundings and quickly. You need to know, if possible, how you got there and where your killer may be. Were you dragged or brought in by a vehicle? If you were dragged, that will tell you what direction you came from and will be the least likely false trail. It would take a great deal of effort to drag you in all sorts of circles on the tilted terrain and around trees. Next, footprints. If there are none, no difference, but if there are, they could tell you a couple things about your captor.
1: How tall he is. You already know he's big enough to move YOU (if you are a larger person this could be bad news or good news)
2: What direction he left in. While you can't trust it, it's a starting point and shouldn't be ignored. There are distinct possibilities here. This may be the way he want's you to think he went (the more evident the tracks, the more this is likely). Or it's the way he really went (less evident tracks "may" point to this but also indicate his skill) You can't trust either one, but they can play into the direction you choose to go.

Tire tracks means he has a vehicle of some sort. So you know more about his tools, anyway.

Next, you can't stay where you are. If you can see far enough away to see where terrain changes, he can see you from just as far away. He gave you 10 minutes and will likely be watching. You can't just sit there and try to eagle eye for him either, It's a waste of time. What this will also tell you, is a narrowed down point of where he may be. A psycho who wants to hunt you will be armed in  the best way to be in control. That means a rifle. Since psychos of this kind are meticulous and detail oriented, you know he knows the entire area better than you. All the same, you have to move. Seek out the densest area of terrain you possibly can. The closer trees are around you, the less open shots anyone has on you. This may buy you a few more minutes since he has to come closer or change position to get at you. Now you can take in more of your surroundings except that you best be flat on the ground so long as you are on the ground. Even so, you can figure out your next move from here and finish shaking off the chem effects. Remember those tracks you saw and pay attention. You wouldn't want to run right into him before you're read.

Check your inventory. Note that I said you can assume you have a belt? So you have a belt. That's a handier tool that your captor realizes. It's a weapon and first aid all in one. What, you've never been clocked by a belt buckle? That's a piece of metal on the end of basically a leather whip by the way. Or you can put a couple of fingers through the metal loop, hold the point outward and have a minor stabbing or punching weapon. Don't forget strangling. You're belt is also a life saving tourniquet, or an anchor for up in a tree. It's a tool for bundling items you find too, like sticks you sharpen with a jagged rock. If you have shoe laces, they can be useful too. 
If you are a woman, this scenario assumes you are wearing a bra (because I wasn't specifically thinking of women when I wrote the challenge). You have another weapon.

Gain a vantage point. Even if you climb a tree for a better look around, you are making  yourself less of an easy target. You need to find ways to make it so you can see better than he can. It's also unlikely that he'll expect you to disappear into thick cover only to climb a tree. He expects you to panic and run down the mountain side (which is something you must not do). 

Watch out for traps. Who says the guy is out to play fair? Expect his turf to have surprises. If you were to just run for it, you wouldn't notice the signs of those surprises. Leg traps under branches, trip wires, etc. If your captor was generous enough to set traps, trip them and scalp them for usable parts and weapons. 

Find a way to make him come to you. This may mean getting into a good hidden position and waiting for several hours. Chance's are he's not impatient to kill you. You will have to make it look like you outright vanished. There's two ways to do this: up a tree, or into the ground as much as possible.

If you do have to run for any reason, do so between trees as much as possible and for as short of a distance as possible. Long runs will work against you. You need to find ways to drop out of sight suddenly.

Set something on fire. If you know how, a sudden range fire would do a lot to attract attention and screw up your killer's plans. True, also a federal offense, but are the authorities in for a hell of a story from you! Using the side of the woods nearest the rock terrain gives you a chance at sharp shale or maybe some flint. 

To sum up, your chances of living increase if you:

1: pay attention to evidence of your surroundings
2: move to cover
3: watch for traps
4:utilize your inventory
5:do the unexpected in any way you can

None of that guarantees your survival, but then that's not the point of the challenge. Do you agree or disagree with anything or have your own ideas? Be detailed and tell me what you would do in comments. Hope you enjoyed this.


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