in: Outdoor/Survival, Podcast, Skills

• Last updated: September 27, 2021

The Art of Manliness Podcast #48: Survival and Prepping With Creek Stewart

In today’s episode I talk to Creek Stewart, owner of Willow Haven Outdoor, and author of Building the Perfect Bug Out Bag: Your 72-Hour Disaster Survival Kit. His most recent book is The Unofficial Hunger Games Survival Guide. Creek and I discuss his new book and things you can do now to prepare for an emergency.

Highlights from the Show:

  • How Creek became a survival trainer (short answer: lots of hustle)
  • Common barriers that keep people from preparing for a disaster
  • What does “Bugging Out” mean?
  • The most important survival skills a person needs to have
  • Creek’s prediction on whether society is headed towards a Hunger Games scenario (Just for fun)

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Special thanks to Keelan O’Hara for editing the podcast! Much better than my GarageBand job.

Read the Transcript

Brett McKay: Brett McKay here, and welcome to another edition of the Art of Manliness podcast.

Now, let’s say you are plopped in the middle of the wilderness with nothing but your wits. Would you know what to do to survive or how about, let’s say there is some sort of natural disaster, power is cut off, gas is cut off and water is cut off, would you know how to survive those hours, days maybe even weeks without those amenities?

Well, our guest today has dedicated his life to helping people prepare for those sort of wilderness survival or emergency situations. His name is Creek Stewart and he is the owner of the Willow Haven Outdoor. It’s a survival school in Indiana. And you might recognize Creek, he has written a lot of articles, some are most popular content on the Art of Manliness: How to Build a Survival Shotgun, How to Build a 72 Hour Kits. He has also written a few books. He is out with a new one called the Unofficial Hunger Games Survival Guide. So, in the off chance we have societal collapse and we have reality show where it’s the last man standing wins, this book will tell you how to survive. And we are going to talk to him today about his book and also some other advice on how to prepare for emergency situations. Stay tuned.

Well, Creek welcome to the show.

Creek Stewart: Hey, thanks for having me. I am excited.

Brett McKay: Yeah, so I mean we were just talking about this earlier, the first time we’ve actually talked on the phone like before I mean you have written so many great articles for us, we have never actually gotten together to chat. So this is a first.

Creek Stewart: Hi and probably it’s great to put a voice with all the emails that we sent back and forth. So that’s modern technology for you, I guess.

Brett McKay: Yeah, for sure. All right, so let’s do a little background about you. You are a professional survival instructor and that’s what you do for living. I am sure there’s lot of guys who are like, man that sounds like the dream job. How did you become a survival instructor? Did it started as a hobby as a kid and then you just somehow managed to figure out a way to make a living off this. Tell us your story.

Creek Stewart: Yeah, you know, I mean you are exactly right. It certainly hasn’t been an easy road and one without hurdles and bumps like most people’s stories I guess who probably pursued their dreams but, you know, I grew up in scouts, long-time scouts, you know, Eagle Scout and I always loved the outdoors, always had a passion for self-reliant skills and always knew I would end up in an outdoor related profession or business somehow somewhere.

When I was in college, you know, I am really trying to find my way I ended up writing a small self-published letter in a survival manual about the skills I knew. At that time I was 21 so it’s about 15 years ago. And I took that little manual and I sold it to boys scout. I took out an ad in the back of Boys’ Life magazine and I was going around from troupe to troupe and, you know, hawking this little survival manual about the skills I knew at the time. That little manual led to me holding some two hour courses on my parent’s farm in Southern Indiana. Those two hour courses led to me holding one day courses and then I started doing more and more courses and invested the next kind of five to six years really taking my skillset seriously because you can only teach the skills as your profession and then yourself. So I took some time and really invested in training and making sure my skills were up to par.

I was in mobile business for a long time. And I would explore with trailer and I would drive from rental land and farmland and state parks. For the longest time while working a fulltime job and sometimes two fulltime jobs and, you know, about three or four years ago I decided to really go deep and I invested in the facility and a building. So I have 21 acres and a beautiful large and, you know, that’s when, you know, my business don’t changed, you know, when I had the facility and I can hold three-day courses and people could spend the night. So that’s kind of my story in a nutshell.

Brett McKay: That’s a really inspiring story. It seems like it’s a lot of hassle that went on there. So, now you have the facility so people can come out to your places in Indiana, right?

Creek Stewart: It is Central Indiana.

Brett McKay: And basically learn how to be a known man essentially?

Creek Stewart: Yeah, I mean we definitely teach manly skills so, I mean we teach primitive survival skills, you know, how to meet your basic core human survival needs, shelter, water, fire and food.

Brett McKay: Yeah. One of the things I like about your style and your approach, I mean yours is very approachable with this material because I know for a lot of people who are sort of layman who is completely new to prepping and survival stuff. It can be kind of intimidating because it’s a different kind of group of people who are interested in it, but this stuff is important for everyone. I just love how you make it accessible to everyone so kudos to you for doing that. Let’s talk about that sort of barrier, intimidation, there’s a lot of prepping terms like jargon that if you didn’t know what that you are like what is that?

Creek Stewart: Yeah.

Brett McKay: For example like bugging-out is a common one and then bugging-in. What’s the difference between bugging-out and bugging-in and how do you prepare for those different types of situations?

Creek Stewart: Yeah. Well, I mean there’s talk at the end of the spectrum, you know, the definition of bugging-out is when disasters of any type whether natural or man-made strikes your area and it’s no longer safe to stay at home, the decision to stay at home is actually, you know, life threatening. So in response to that you have to evacuate your home in search of a favored destination and head from Point A to Point B. And that decision is what we refer to in the survival industry as bugging-out.

Now, bugging-in is an ideal scenario in a disastrous situation because it’s the exact opposite. It’s you decide maybe in a severe storm it’s not life-threatening but your lights are out, you may not have electricity, you may not have gas, you may not be able to drive around maybe there’s ice-covered roads, and so your decision is to hunker down, close your doors and provide for yourself inside your own home for, you know, anywhere from extended period of time anywhere from maybe 12 hours to three days, maybe even two weeks who knows.

Brett McKay: Yeah, in Oklahoma we get like this really wicked ice storms. And a few years ago there was one and the electricity was out for over a week and you couldn’t go anywhere. It was kind of scary because like we had stuff on hand but then you started getting to that point where like oh, you know, we are reaching that limit where we should have had some more. So, yeah being prepared for those, I guess that was a bugging-in situation.

Creek Stewart: It would absolutely. And you know Oklahoma had a bug-out situation about a week and half ago, you know this tornado that came through…

Brett McKay: Yeah.

Creek Stewart: …people, you know all of a sudden staying in the path of the tornado is a life-threatening decision so people had to kind of bug-out.

Brett McKay: Yeah. So the essential part of bugging-out is having a bug-out bag. And it seems like people are just talking about this all over the internet, you know, go get your bug-out bag. You in fact wrote just a fantastic article–post about how to build a bug-out bag and you even published a book on how to build a bug-out bag, which I highly recommend you guys get. It’s awesome. I am using it to build my family’s bug-out bag. Creek has this awesome list where he tells you exactly what you need, how many of those things you need based on the number of people. So my wife and I have been slowly putting together our bug-out bag with his book. But Creek, can you give us kind of a just like a basic rundown of sort of items you would want in a bug-out bag?

Creek Stewart: Yeah, absolutely. You know the most important aspect of a bug-out bag is that it’s a bag, it’s a backpack, you know. It’s got to be something mobile because just because we are leaving our home doesn’t mean that we may be able to do so in a vehicle. Especially in big cities when everybody leaves their residence at that same time it ends in nothing sort of traffic jams. And so traveling by foot may be a necessity so the bug-out bags first and foremost has to be mobile. You got to be able to carry it.

All teaching I do in any survival kit I think about or, you know, talk about it always starts with four categories and that’s what I called the core four – it’s shelter, water, fire and food. So the first four categories on any survival kit include a bug-out bag, it should include tools and gears and things to help you meet your core basic survival needs, again the shelter, water, fire and food categories.

Brett McKay: Got you. So it’s just like having extra pair of clothes, maybe have a tarp for shelter.

Creek Stewart: Yeah. So if you want kind of delve in a little bit more specifically like shelter category. For my bug-out bag I use a lightweight backpacking tent. You know I like the idea of a tent that closes you off from the rest of, you know, what might be happening around you but, you know, definitely a sleeping bag, definitely some kind of a tarp, maybe a backup emergency survival blanket, maybe a backup rain poncho that could be configured into a shelter configurations.

So shelter is, you know, in extreme conditions humans can live for three hours without shelter, three days without water and three weeks without food. So shelter is a really important. And hypothermia is the number one outdoor killer in this country. More death related to hypothermia than any other outdoor-related death, bowling, climbing accidents, four-wheeler accidents, snake bites, I mean it’s a huge silent killer. So shelter is very important.

Brett McKay: And then I guess water, just to kind of the basics have an extra bottle of water perhaps and then…

Creek Stewart: Exactly, you know, the ideal timeframe for– the average disasters last 72 hours where in the absence of the utilities that we depend on so much like electricity and water and food and things like that. So plan for 72 hours with a water which a good estimate is 3 liters and because water is so critical and you could move through it pretty quickly, a backup solution for water whether it’s a, you know, affordable LifeStraw or lightweight backpacking, pump where you could source water from a creek or a pond. So just some kind of backup to the three pieces you already have.

Brett McKay: Got you. What I found initially about bug-out bag is that a lot of people just already have this stuff lying around their house.

Creek Stewart: Yeah.

Brett McKay: It’s just a matter of putting it all in one place so when something does happen you can just grab it and go.

Creek Stewart: Exactly. You know that’s the whole concept because you know the last thing you want to be doing in the sometimes seconds that you have being notified of a large-scale disaster, the last thing you want to be doing is trying to pack.

Brett McKay: Yeah.

Creek Stewart: And it’s a great kit to have just in case mother nature or man gives you very little to no warning.

Brett McKay: Yeah. I guess the bug-out bag can also serve as a sort of a bug-in bag in some situations too. Right like if the water is out then you can use the resources in your bug-out bag to fulfill that need.

Creek Stewart: Absolutely. I dig into my bug-out bag all the time especially when I– sometimes I grabbed my bug-out bag if I am going on long trip, you know, I will have that in the car with me and, you know, I will dig into my bug-out bag when I am at home, when the lights go out or, you know, a large storm or a windstorm or something like that. It doesn’t have to save your life it could be really useful and practical.

Brett McKay: Yeah definitely for sure. It’s funny you mentioned the car thing. My dad, several years ago it’s been almost like over 20 years ago. He got stuck in a blizzard between Amarillo and Oklahoma City. He had to pull over on the side of the road.

Creek Stewart: Wow.

Brett McKay: And yeah he was there for like a day, like he had been, but thankfully he had a bunch of stuff in his car where he is able, you know, feed himself, stay warm.

Creek Stewart: Wow.

Brett McKay: So yeah, kids make sure you have something in your car because you never know when it can happen, it happened to my dad.

Creek Stewart: Yeah exactly. Classic, I mean just a classic textbook example of what I call sudden and unexpected survival scenarios because there’s a big misconception that you know these doesn’t happen, this won’t happen to me, this only happens to other people and people on the news. But you know what I mean, you know, when I teach survival skills I don’t talk about zombies and meteorites and alien invasions, I mean I talked about the real stuff that happens to real people just like you and me on a regular basis.

Brett McKay: And I guess that must be the biggest barrier in preventing people to just start preparing or getting ready for those types of things. They just don’t think it happens right? They just think oh, it will never happen to me, it will happen to someone else so I am not going to do anything about it. I mean is that the biggest barrier for a fact?

Creek Stewart: That is certainly on the top of the list, you know, just the mentality that it’s not going to happen to me. There is just such a naïve– we are just so comfortable, you know, and especially the US, and I know you have an international audience as well, but we are just so comfortable here and it is so hard to imagine that our basic human survival needs aren’t just around the corner or just the flip of a switch but it happens. It absolutely happens to people. I would say the number two barrier is people are busy. Their schedules are hectic and it’s hard to carve out time for yourself sometimes let alone putting together a kit which is certainly an investment of time.

Brett McKay: Definitely. Let’s talk about, so you mentioned– oh I was going to talk about yeah like that whole mentality. I love the phrase that you used to sign off on post and your emails, it’s like it’s not if but when.

Creek Stewart: Right.

Brett McKay: I love that because you always think oh, you know if it might happen then I will do this but it’s like, if it’s so conditional and when you think about when it’s more immediate and more pertinent and it brings thing, that sort of mentality, I guess there’s lights of fire on your butt to get things going.

Creek Stewart: Yeah I really believe that too. I really believe that we have a pretty high probability that at some point in our lives finding ourselves in some kind of a sudden and unexpected survival scenario, you know, just like those crew ships, that’s strange you know…

Brett McKay: Yeah.

Creek Stewart: Two huge crew ships in the middle of the ocean shut down for seven days you know but those people never thought in million years when they left on their vacation they would be fighting for their basic human survival needs for a few days.

Brett McKay: Yeah, I mean crew ships like it’s like everything kind of magically happens where you have like all you can eat buffet, you’ve got, I mean just everything is catered towards you and like as soon as that’s gone you’re like, okay what do I do now?

Creek Stewart: Right, seriously, right.

Brett McKay: That’s going to be scary. So you talked about for your bug-out bag you need to think about their Core-Four. Let’s take that concept of the Core-Four to skills. I am guessing the most important skills that a person should work on developing center around those Core-Four so fire building, shelter building are those like the most important hard skills.

Creek Stewart: Absolutely. You know, I mean top three hard skills are understanding basic shelter and principles, you know, understanding what your dangers are, what your threats are with sheltering and how to kind of combat those in any type of the situation whether it is wilderness or urban. Number two set of skills, you know, the top three it depends on the circumstances what’s one, two or three but the top three are shelter, water you know understanding how to purify water, understanding how to find water, how to track water. And number three, fire because fire can be so relevant to shelter and water. If for some reason you don’t have the resources or the knowledge to erect or configure a suitable shelter all of a sudden fire becomes your number one resource for regulating core body temperature. So your fire building skills are really important.

And on the same line I guess for water, you know, if you don’t have a modern pump or chemical purifiers or a LifeStraw and you don’t have portable water all of a sudden boiling becomes your number one way to purify drinking water and obviously you need fire to boil water, so those three are definitely the top three skills to focus on. Fire building is probably the most time consuming because it is truly an art, but regardless of which survival skills we are talking about there is only one way to learn a skill and it is through practice and repetition. You can read all the books, you can watch all the videos, and even train with some of the best instructors in the world but until you get on your hands and knees and start doing these skills with your own two hands then trial and error, it is the only way to work.

Brett McKay: That’s a great point. You talked about being busy, right? That’s one of the things that prevents people from doing that. Any suggestions you have for the average person out there who is listening they are like, man I really want to practice, I want to develop these skills, how do I work those in to my schedule? Do you have any suggestions on that?

Creek Stewart: Absolutely. You know, there is a huge misconception that in order to practice survival skills you have to go into the remote wilderness for two weeks and put yourself in a survival situation to actually practice the skills. I get that all the time. Well, I don’t have 80 acres how do I, how can I practice? You practice this stuff at your backyard, you know, you don’t need any, you could practice if you live in an apartment you could practice 99% of the skills you need to know to save your life in the wild can be practiced on a five square foot patio in the back of an apartment. The misconception is that you need wide open spaces and all this land to practice some of the skills and that’s just not the case. Quite frankly they are not really that time consuming, you know, and I’ve never ever for anybody who has kids or young people in their life, I never ever met a kid that doesn’t absolutely love spending time with someone learning outdoor skills. It is an excellent way to just bond with people and, you know, if you go camping you can incorporate some of these fire building skills or shelter building skills in the camping trip. It doesn’t have to be a dedicated survival skills weekend. You know a lot of these things can be incorporated in the activities that we do on a regular basis, you know, instead of starting a fire in the barbecue with the lighter this week, maybe there’s something a little bit different, maybe there’s something a little primitive and can try to strike it with a ferrow rod or a piece of man-made, or a piece of natural found tinder or something.

Brett McKay: That’s some great stuff, aren’t they? That just gave me some great ideas. I get some ideas bubbling in my mind right now like how to do it. My son’s 2, I mean I am like the one looking for the age when he gets a little bit older where I can like do stuff with him.

Creek Stewart: Yeah.

Brett McKay: Just going in the backyard and just like, hey we are going to set up a tent today or hey we are going to learn how to start a fire with a magnifying glass.

Creek Stewart: I never met a boy who doesn’t– they love to build a fort.

Brett McKay: Oh yeah that would be awesome.

Creek Stewart: You know and you follow the four instead of a survival shelter and all of a sudden eyes start lighting up.

Brett McKay: Okay. So those are the hard skills, shelter building, fire building, water, but are there any like soft skills like, you know, things you need to do to be mentally prepared for survival situation or psychologically or socially I mean is there a soft component to survival as well?

Creek Stewart: Sure absolutely. You know, I mean I don’t know the percentage but you know a high, high, high 90% of survival is mental, you know, what your mind decides your body will do. And so, if I had to just pick two kind of mental survival skills that people can work on, you know, as they go about their daily routines or daily activities, number one that I believe your most important survival skill is that it will always be your ability to improvise because if there is one thing I can promise you about a sudden and unexpected survival scenario it’s that you won’t have everything you need. That kind of defines the survival scenario. It kind of gives you the definition about scenario.

So you all of a sudden have to make do, you have to meet your needs with what you have. And oftentimes that’s with what you have in the car like your dad did, in your pockets, in your purse, in a backpack and it’s using oftentimes everyday items and trash in a different way. It’s looking at things what I call through survival tinted goggles. So just kind of a fun exercise to do with your family or your body is just to throw a random product on the table and then just brainstorm as many things as you can think of as how that product could be used to meet one of your core four basics human survival needs.

Brett McKay: That’s awesome. I love that.

Creek Stewart: And you will be surprised. Yeah, you will be surprised at the list. The first two to come out are always a little crazy but once they start coming and people start brainstorming you will be surprised at all the crazy ways these regular everyday items that we see in ditches along the road can be used to meet our core basic survival needs with a little bit of creativity.

Brett McKay: You have actually written some articles for the Art of Manliness, that sort of thing like some of our most popular articles The Survival Tampon is an example.

Creek Stewart: Classic example.

Brett McKay: Yeah. I mean who would have known that this is like the– what do you call the tactical survival tool. What does tampon mean?

Creek Stewart: Yeah… exactly what it was that’s really tactical outdoor adventure tool or something like that.

Brett McKay: Yeah. And then you also do with the cellphone, right? Like if you have a busted cellphone here’s the different ways you can…

Creek Stewart: Right.

Brett McKay: So yeah, I mean, so I guess your suggestion is like just take stuff you find in your house, plop it on the table and say all right find as many ways as you can to use this as a survival instrument.

Creek Stewart: Exactly. And it’s actually pretty fun to do, you know, and like any skill whether the hard– you know we talked about the hard skills, how practice is important. Thinking outside of the box and being creative is the skill. And in fact encourage and if you encouraged your mind to think that way on a regular basis you will be surprised how quickly you start to develop the ability to improvise and kind of look at products through those survival tinted goggles that I talked about.

Brett McKay: That’s awesome. All right, so let’s talk about your new book. You got a new book out. It’s the Unofficial Hunger Games Survival Guide. Who is this book geared towards, what’s your goal with this book?

Creek Stewart: Well, I tell you what, I always told myself I was never going to write a primitive survival skills manual. There are so many on the market. Quite frankly I didn’t really feel like I could add to the concept that was already out there, I mean there is always so many different ways you can present how to build a shelter and how to do a bow drill and how to start fire with sticks. And then a lot of great primitive survival skills manual in the market. So I always told myself that’s been done numerous ways before and I am never going to write one. And then the Hunger Games came along which if no one knows what the Hunger Games are then I don’t know what to say…

Brett McKay: Yeah, then I am sleeping under the rock.

Creek Stewart: Yeah seriously. Let’s put it that way. It’s a huge young adult survival scene fiction books series. There are three books in that series, number one book series and probably the world for the past year and maybe even a couple of years. It gave me an opportunity to reach, to present primitive skills in a totally different way and reach an audience that doesn’t necessarily go out and pick up your traditional primitive skills survival manual.

So while this book does have a Hunger Games theme it is certainly not only for Hunger Games fans, you know, it is at its core. I teach all the survival skills and more mentioned throughout the book series, the Hunger Games book series. But at its core it is a primitive skill manual, you know, these are real, these are not fictional skills, these are real skills for real people in a real situation. So whether you are a Hunger Games fan or whether you’re a survival fan it is an awesome read. It’s full of pictures which I love and it’s not heavy reading. It’s real light reading. I am a very light kind of, you know, very light writer and my writing is easy to read and this fits right in there. So it’s presenting primitive skills in a really different and unique way that’s never been done before.

Brett McKay: What sort of skills inspired by the movie will we find in the book?

Creek Stewart: I got some pretty cool ones, I mean we definitely talked about twitch-up snares, we definitely talk about how to build snares but I am going to create posts for you for the Art of Manliness on snares too.

Brett McKay: Yeah.

Creek Stewart: We definitely talk about wild edibles. A big theme of the Hunger Games is Katniss who’s the main character. Actually Katniss, that name is named after a wild edible tuber, the katniss plant also known as the arrowhead plant. So the Hunger Games book series have a lot of edible themes that talk about a lot of wild edibles that those characters might have been harvesting and gathering. A lot of different hunting tools and techniques, there’s kind of a cool scene in the book where Katniss is preparing a warm soup for this other character named Peeta. She heats the soup by putting in sun warmed rocks to heat the soup. And there’s a part in the book where I teach people how to make a coal burning container out of wood. And then use hot rocks to actually boil and purify water in a wooden container.

Brett McKay: That’s awesome, that’s really cool.

Creek Stewart: Yeah it’s applying a lot of those skills mentioned, you know, really flashing them out so that people can practice them and understand them and hopefully one day whoever need to use them.

Brett McKay: Speaking of which, one day, what are the chances, you know, as a survivor expert, what are the chances you think will end up like Panem where you know there is societal breakdown in the United States and the country is divided into 12 districts and we make teenagers kill each other. What are the chances that that will happen that your book will actually, you know, the skills you teach will actually be applicable in the arena so to speak?

Creek Stewart: Yeah seriously, well you know, I mean I am the kind of guy that said never say never.

Brett McKay: Yeah.

Creek Stewart: You know it’s probably slim, you know, but all great superpowers are falling and, you know, the chances of maybe Panem are pretty slim but the chances of being thrust into a sudden and unexpected survival scenario are not so slim.

Brett McKay: Yeah.

Creek Stewart: You know I really believe that this stuff happens to people on a regular basis, I mean we see it on the news. And I really believe that these skills are important. We are not the society that we were 150 years ago where a lot of this is common knowledge. We have become accustomed to our basic needs being provided for us rather than us providing them. And a lot of people are very uncomfortable when faced with a scenario like that. So you know even though it may not be a complete societal collapse, it only takes three hours to die and sometimes less.

So basic primitive skills and modern skills with tools will always have their place regardless of what society is like or what the world is like as long as we are on Planet Earth, mother nature will always be our greatest adversary.

Brett McKay: For sure. All right, so Creek final question. What can we expect from you in the future? I mean, I am always amazed that you seem that you get all these projects going on. What are some of the one’s we can look forward to that you got coming down the pipe?

Creek Stewart: Well, I try to stay busy. I always try to put out good survival content, man. So I am trying. I am constantly just trying to come out with good writing and good content for people, you know, that it’s going to make a difference someday. So I tried to be entertaining at the same time and I try to do stuff that’s valuable.

One of the projects I am most excited about right now is I’ve written my first– it’s my first survival fiction novel. It’s a young adult novel. It’s probably one of the projects that I am most excited about my whole career. It’s a really great story. It’s about a boy 17 years old. The name of the book is RUGOSA. It will be out in a few months. You can obviously get more information on my website but it’s about a 17-year-old boy in kind of a collapsing society travels from Eastern West Virginia on foot to save this girl that he loves who is trapped in Philadelphia. And it will really go through everything that this kid is experiencing both hard skills and soft skills that we talked about to get her and to start that journey back. It’s the first of the three book series and it is everything that I ever wanted to read in a survival fiction story. So I am really super excited about it.

Brett McKay: That’s really awesome. Did you ever think that you would you know like 6 years ago that you will be a fiction author?

Creek Stewart: No never. You know I always have enjoyed survival fiction. I mean, I grew up reading My Side of the Mountain and Hatchet, you know I mean White Fang; I just love survival fiction and, you know, it’s such a part of how I think and who I am and kind of what shaped my childhood. I never thought that I would be writing survival fiction but it’s been a really fun, it was fun, it’s been really fun writing those stories and it indicates you are not necessarily, you know, confined by facts, and so it’s just been a really a fun opportunity.

Brett McKay: I am looking forward to it. We are going take down the Hunger Games and then we will have a movie made based out of your books. We are going to make it happen.

Creek Stewart: I tell you what I got to give mad props to Suzanne Collins who wrote the Hunger Games because it’s only because of that book series that, you know, I had the opportunity to write this book. She has opened up the doors of opportunity for so many other people as have you, and, you know, expose an entirely new audience, the young adult audience to survival skills that I believe are important that may have not otherwise had an interest in those. So I definitely see a spike in young adults and teenagers at my courses. And I think that’s huge and I give a lot of credit to her in that series so.

Brett McKay: Very good. Well, Creek this has been a great conversation. Thank you so much for your time.

Creek Stewart: Hey Brett man, I appreciate all that you do. I am a huge fan of you and your site and you know I eat up your content so the pleasure is all mine.

Brett McKay: Well thank you sir I am humbled and honored.

Creek Stewart: And just to let you know I am at the Blade Show and I’ve met probably five or six, I was only in there for a couple of hours at the Blade Show in Atlanta, Georgia and I’ve met five or six guys who come up to me and said, are you Creek from the Art of Manliness, the guy who writes on the Art of Manliness? So you have got Art of Manliness fans walking around the Blade Night Show in Atlanta, Georgia today, Brett.

Brett McKay: That’s awesome.

Creek Stewart: I am serious, man.

Brett McKay: That’s all. If you see any more give them a firm handshake for me.

Creek Stewart: Certainly I will. I certainly will. I told them I said, I’m getting ready to get on the phone with Brett from the podcast. I think they were a little jealous but I couldn’t fit ‘em all in the conference room so.

Brett McKay: Our guest today was Creek Stewart. Creek is the owner of Willow Haven Outdoor. You can find more information about the survival school at And his latest book is the Unofficial Hunger Games Survival Guide. And you can find that book on

Well that wraps up another edition of the Art of Manliness podcast. For more manly tips and advice make sure to check out the Art of Manliness website at

And hey did you guys know we have a store, we do. It’s You will find all sorts of Art of Manliness goodies there, T-Shirts, posters with illustrations by Ted Slampyak, stationery and we are adding new products. So would love for you to check by, pick something up it will help support the podcast and the website and can keep it going. So thanks.

So until next time, this is Brett McKay telling you to stay manly.

Unofficial Hunger Games Survival Guide Giveaway

willowhaven.jpgCreek’s latest book, The Unofficial Hunger Games Survival Guide, is a primitive skills manual themed after the popular book series The Hunger Games. It’s a great read packed with practical lifesaving primitive survival skills in the areas of shelter, water, fire, food, and rescue. Great for getting kids interested in survival skills, but can be enjoyed by readers of all ages! If you’d like to get your hands on a copy as part of a prize package Creek put together that includes a 5-in-1 survival aid, leave a comment about the podcast below. Two packages are up for grabs!

Deadline to enter is Friday, July 19, 2013 at 5PM CDT. We’ll then draw two random comments to select the winners. Post will be updated with the winners names within 72 hours of the close of the giveaway

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