10 Tips to Know If You Were Stranded on a Desert Island

What is a Deserted Island? What are the Necessary Items? What things should you look for in a Ship or Plane? How to make Solar Water Still? What is aTepee? How to make a Raft? How to Stay Sane?
If You Were Stranded On A Desert Island

Having adventures with friends is something everyone craves in their college days. And ending up in problems is also a part of these adventures, but come to think of that, if you were stranded on a desert island and you lack the deserted island survival items, scary though. Surviving on a deserted island could be possible if you had these items and desert island survival tips. 

Define Surviving on a Deserted Island

An uninhabited island is an island or Atoli, that humans have deserted a long time ago. It is known as a deserted island. You have seen such islands in survival shows, movies, and series. Some of you might have experienced scenarios like if you were stranded on a desert island, you must have maintained your calm and done what was needed.

So for future reference, the basic guidelines will include some steps which mean to STOP(take a pause from whatever you are doing in that situation in a desert), think, observe and plan. Panicking is normal, but staying calm will help you more. (See Rhode Island Smallest State in the USA)

Essential Deserted Island Survival Item

Lost in such a place where finding directions is a challenging task in itself. So, to be able to withstand the harsh climate, storms, thirst, hunger, and other difficulties, you need to be prepared. Do not forget the following things if you are going on an adventure.

  • A knife, fishing net,  giant matchbox
  • Hammock, bug spray
  • Sunblock
  • Inflatable raft (with rows), spear
  • Flashlight, signal mirror
  • Satellite phone or cell phone
  • Family photo

Desert Island Survival Tips If You Were Stranded On A Desert Island

Try to think straight and maintain your calm and do the following things first in a written order. Collect things from the shipwreck or plane through which you reached there. Sometimes planes or ships have essential items left in them. You can get food items, first aid, tools, clothes, etc., in them. Try to collect as many as possible because you can put them to their best possible use. They are given below. (Also read Shipwrecks In The Ocean)

1. Find a Fresh Water Source

Water rising up after a drop fell into it: if you were stranded on a desert island 1

You know that you cannot drink ocean water, hence you have to find a source of freshwater. Towards the inner island, there must be some sort of waterfall or pond, but before going deep, be prepared with tools. You can also make solar water still

Follow these steps to make a solar still.

  • If you were stranded on a desert island, begin by digging a hole near the edge of the trees until you reach the damp sand below.
  • In the center of the hole, place a container. The empty space around the container can be filled with something wet, like wet leaves.
  • Cover the hole completely with the plastic sheet and secure it with rocks. Put a rock on the plastic just above the container.
  • Now your solar still is ready and the condensed water will be collected in the container. (See Do Water Towers Hold Water?)

2. Build a Shelter

Tepee: if you were stranded on a desert island 2

It is not possible to find shelter on a deserted island, so it would be better to build one yourself. You need to build one as soon as possible to stay safe from predators. A Tepee is an easy option because it can be prepared with just 4 items. Explore the island carefully to collect the necessary items. (See Outhouse Design)

  • Begin by collecting 20 thick and long branches. Also, collect as much thick fodder as you can.
  • Place 3 branches to make a tripod base and place the rest along them to make a tight circle.
  • Keep an open space for the entrance.
  • Use the foliage to cover the Tepee completely to make a barrier to outside elements. 

3. Make the Fire

Fire tepee.

Though you usually light a fire with the click of your thumb, keeping this fire alive to keep you warm needs a pattern. If you were stranded on a desert island, you may or may not have a lighter, but follow these steps to build a mini tepee fire. (See How to put out someone on fire?)

  • Collect dry tinder and branches of all sizes.
  • Arrange in the same way as you did in the shelter.
  • Cut a groove at the base of a stick.
  • Ignite the tinder at one end.
  • A hard stick creates friction to light a spark.
  • Blow on it to fuel the fire. 

4. Create Rescue Signs

SOS: if you were stranded on a desert island 3

It is not easy to maintain contact with the world, but since you are missing, your family or friends may have reported it and there is a rescue team looking for you. To enable them to locate you from the sky, it would be better to write SOS on the beach with sand. Make sure to make it large.
Next, the smoke from your fire would be helpful too. Since everyone knows the island is deserted, the smoke rising from there is a sign. (See How to Make a Smoke Bomb)

5. Find Food


Being stranded on an island, easily available food will be fish. If you have a fishing net or hook from your things from the wrecked ship, then it is an advantage. Maybe there are some fruit trees on the island, you can try them as well. But if that is not the case, then make a spear. If you are still not convinced to eat fish, then try going deeper into the island with the spear. The next point will discuss how to make a spear if you were stranded on a desert island. (See 21 Healthiest Fish for Fishetarians)

6. Make a Spear

Make a Spear

If you were stranded on a desert island, find a strong and long branch. Sharpen one end of it, long enough to get deep into the fish. Attach stones to the spear with shoelaces or twines. It will increase the weight of the spear. (See How to Make Stink Spray?)

7. Catch the Fish

Two people doing spear fishing

On an island, you can find fish in shallow areas. It would be better to stand on the rocks because then the fish would not be startled by your presence. If you have to walk at the waterside, do not go very deep. It may not be easy on the first try, but keep trying. If you locate a fish, follow the steps. (See 12 Catfish Whiskers Facts)

  • Be ready with your weapon at your side.
  • Wait until the fish stops at a spot.
  • Aim for the fish head and throw the spear. 

8. Beware of Predators

Close up picture of crocodile's snout.

You are in a place where an encounter with a predator is not a surprise. But you do not know which one you can come across. So, it is better to keep your weapons with you and never wander around without them. Going deeper into the island or into deep water may increase your chance of coming across them. (See How Fast Are Crocodiles on Land?)

9. Prepare to Escape

Wood raft.

After being deserted, it may take some time to understand things around you. And it is normal do not to beat yourself for it. If you were stranded on a desert island, you gain access to your survival instincts and are ready to build a shaft that could be a source of escape. It is a five-stage process and you need to make it sturdy enough to withstand the waves and storms. (Also read What is a Gondola ride?)

  • Begin with collecting 20 logs and tree trunks. Their diameter should be 12 inches. Collect small logs to use as braces.
  • For looping the vine, make notches in the logs. Interweave the vines into the notches overlapping from log to log.
  • Continue with it until the structure is ready. Now test it in the water to make sure its sturdiness. Make necessary changes, if needed. 

10. Stay Active and Sane

A lady sitting on a wooden raft: if you were stranded on a desert island 5

It may be nerve-racking to be in such a situation, but you have to pull yourself together. Be composed and work on ways to get out of there. If you have basic survival instincts, you can do it.

So, now you know about deserted island survival items if you were stranded on a desert island. It is time to share desert island survival tips with someone who requires this surviving on a deserted island guide. (See 8 Sand Storms Facts)

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