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101 Skills You Need To Survive In The Woods

101 Skills You Need To Survive In The Woods - Kevin Estela

The first full-feature book written by accomplished Bushcraft/Survival Instructor and Author, Kevin Estela published on April 16th, 2019. The book, 101 Skills You Need to Survive In the Woods, published by Page Street Publishing, features proven methods of building fires, making shelters, using survival equipment, field crafting with natural resources, navigating, and increasing readiness overall. 

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101 Skills You Need To Survive In The Woods focuses on transferring knowledge and skills to the reader in an easy to comprehend manner. Kevin’s overall goal is to empowering the reader to safely explore the outdoors and travel confidently away from home.

The skills presented in the book are grounded in reality, Kevin’s experiences traveling through the United States’ wild places and exotic locations abroad, and the curriculum taught in Estela Wilderness Education courses since 2011. Each chapter features an in-depth introduction laying the foundation and critical background information of each set of skills, followed by essential skills and how to accomplish them, and concluding with training modifiers to revisit each skill with added difficulty and rigor. Throughout the book, the emphasis is placed on improving performance beyond simple completion of each skill. 101 Skills is not a one-time read and it will become an irreplaceable addition to any collection of survival books. 101 Skills is 208 pages long and features original color photography and black and white illustrations by Kevin’s niece, Lauren Harton.

101 Skills You Need To Survive In The Woods draws heavily on Kevin’s childhood when he learned survival skills from his father, his time as Lead Survival Instructor at the Wilderness Learning Center in Chateaugay, NY under noted Survival Instructor Marty Simon, and his experience in the Sayoc Tribe learning the skills and logical order of thinking taught by the late Founder Pamana Tuhon Christopher Sayoc Sr. whom Kevin considered a mentor and friend. Falling back on over 20 years of educator experience starting with his time as a kayaking and canoeing instructor to his present career as a High School History Teacher at Bristol Central High School, Kevin writes clearly, intelligently, and in a manner easily digested and comprehended by the reader.  Kevin has over 101 plus published print magazine articles in premiere survival magazines and writes for the reader. 101 Skills is more than a book the reader will be entertained by; it will inspire lifestyle changes making the reader ready for life’s surprises and little emergencies. 101 Skills has received back-cover and inside-cover endorsements by some of the foremost experts in primitive living skills, military escape and evasion training, and outdoor professionals. The book will appeal to a broad audience and offers something for everyone.

101 Skills You Need to Survive in the Woods: The Most Effective Wilderness Know-How on Fire-Making, Knife Work, Navigation, Shelter, Food and More

The Foundation of All Survival Skills is “Feeder” Mind-Set

“Feeder” mind-set means being in control of a situation, proactive rather than reactive. It is an optimistic outlook that reframes any situation as a learning experience. Kevin Estela teaches survival skills from this feeder-based perspective, which is what separates his teaching style from other wilderness instructors.

Kevin has written the quintessential guide for an outdoor enthusiast’s “bucket list” of skills―how to make a fire, build a shelter, gather food, find water, use a knife correctly and make cordage. These skills will keep you safe and better prepare you to deal with emergencies in the field when you’ll need the additional skills of signaling and communication, navigation, and crisis first aid taught in this book. Each chapter concludes with more advanced techniques to build your skills in various challenging situations, with tips that even seasoned survival enthusiasts haven’t thought of.

101 Skills You Need to Survive in the Woods is not a one time read but a lifetime reference you will turn to over and over again. It will become the first thing you pack for any adventure and just might save your― or someone else’s―life. Kevin Estela, a bushcraft and survival expert, is an avid world traveler and martial arts instructor.​

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Kevin Estela, a bushcraft and survival expert, is an avid world traveler and martial arts instructor. Kevin has worked with the History Channel and been a featured guest on numerous broadcasts and podcasts. A sought-after speaker, he has written well over 100 articles for such publications as Survivor’s EdgeAmerican Frontiersman, and the RECOIL network


“Kevin Estela is my go-to survival teacher and mentor. He makes it all look easy, and his book is a great guide for anyone interested in survival skills.” ―Kyle DeFoor, former SEAL and owner of DeFoor Proformance Shooting

“This is a no-nonsense approach to keeping yourself alive from someone with real-world experience, written with the hope that one tidbit of information will one day help someone out of a bad situation.” ―Patrick Rollins, lead instructor for Randall’s Adventure Training

101 Skills You Need to Survive in the Woods is a comprehensive manual of skills every outdoors person should own. It will be at home in your pack or vehicle, or as a reference for teaching.” ―Terry Barney, USAF survival instructor

“Kevin covers all the bases, providing you with the knowledge needed to survive an unexpected wilderness emergency because nobody expects it to happen to them.” ―Doug Ritter, chairman and executive director of Knife Rights, Inc.

“Do yourself a favor. Get this book! Your life may very well depend upon it.” ―Craig Caudill, director of Nature Reliance School and author of Extreme Wilderness Survival and Ultimate Wilderness Gear


Kevin Estela first fell in love with the outdoors as a child. Entertained by the WWII survival stories his father endured in the jungles of the Philippines, Kevin wanted to learn more. Kevin grew up hiking, kayaking/canoeing, fishing, and hunting in New England and spent his free time outside or reading about survival and wilderness skills. Over the years, his childhood interests became stronger and developed into his lifelong passion. Kevin’s passion now includes sharing what he knows with his students, family, and friends.

Kevin is the Owner and Head Instructor of Estela Wilderness Education. He brings extensive educational experience to the courses and material he offers. Kevin is a regular contributing author for RECOIL and OFF-GRID Magazine, American Survival Guide, American Frontiersman, Survivor’s Edge, and other magazines through Beckett Media, Engaged Media, and Athlon Outdoors Media with over 100 published print articles. He is the author of many online articles for various websites and the Book, “101 Skills You Need to Survive in the Woods.” He is a sponsored Professional Outdoorsman by numerous product companies and has great working relationships with many others. He is a guest speaker at sportsmen’s shows, speaking engagements, and webinars. He is a product tester for sporting goods companies and has a proven name in the business for providing honest feedback from years of experience in the field. Kevin has taught on both the East and West coast and has traveled to every corner of the United States, around the country, and even to the United Kingdom to teach bushcraft and survival skills. In January 2015, Kevin officially signed the Estela Wilderness Education Fund into effect. This fund was created to send underprivileged youth from his hometown to educational programs at the Environmental Learning Centers of Connecticut.

Kevin has been featured on the History Channel as an on-air subject matter expert for Expedition Africa: Survival Tips and was the technical adviser for these promotional videos. In December of 2016, Kevin was selected as Co-Host and Presenter for a History Channel Pilot show that was filmed and completed in the Mexico Desert but ultimately was not aired.

Complimenting Kevin’s background in survival and wilderness skills is his martial arts training. Kevin is trained in Sayoc Kali and is an Associate Instructor Level 5 in the Filipino martial arts system. He is also a Black Belt in the Applied Self-Defense program at RiSu Martial Arts and a Purple Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Sifu Chris Smith. Kevin continually attends both striking and grappling seminars and trains with respected professionals as frequently as possible. Kevin has also received extensive pistol, carbine, shotgun, and precision-scoped rifle firearms training at the SIG Sauer Academy and the Sayoc Tactical Group among others.

Prior to starting EWE in April 2011, Kevin was the Lead Instructor of the Wilderness Learning Center and one of the only survival instructors “Certified” by survival authority Marty Simon. Marty helped hone many of Kevin’s skills and taught him many more based on his years as a military and civilian survival instructor. Kevin and Marty continue to have an ongoing friendship today and Kevin considers Marty a great mentor.

At the WLC, Kevin taught numerous classes and conducted seminars from 2007 to 2012. Kevin taught all aspects of survival psychology, firecraft, water collection, shelter making, signaling, food procurement, cordage, and other elements of the Basic, Advanced, and Winter Courses. Kevin spent many years learning about outdoor recreational products while employed at a busy retail sporting goods store during high school and college. While at this store, he received training in rock and ice climbing as well as mountaineering in the White Mountains. He spent summers canoeing and kayaking on the Farmington River in New Hartford, CT, and was employed by Mainstream Canoe and Kayak Corporation as a Guide and Instructor. While at Mainstream, Kevin was responsible for trip planning, children’s group outings, developing programs, and running operations.

In addition to outdoor education, Kevin has been a Full-time High School History Teacher since 2006. Kevin was also a track and field coach to a championship high school team for many years. Kevin received his B.A. in American Studies from Fairfield University in 2002, his M.A. in American Studies from Trinity College in 2004 and his C.A.S. in Secondary Education from the University of Bridgeport in 2007.

Kevin’s unique blend of survival skills, physicality, and educational experience make him an instructor with much to offer his students.