Last week we showed you how to use a wooden toggle as a quick-release system for hanging your tarps... but that's just the tip of the toggle iceberg. Like a shemagh, or a poncho, a wooden toggle is a blank canvas that is only limited by your imagination. It’s really the essence of bushcraft – keeping a few simple tools with you at all times, and using them to make whatever you need from the resources around you. So we’ve covered how toggles can help you with a modern quick-action tarp shelter… but what about when you’re building a long-term primitive shelter? You’ll be doing lashings, and lots of them. When constructing lashings, whether to build a shelter, bushcraft camp gadgets, or build an improvised litter for patient extraction, getting it tight is paramount. Unless you want it to fall apart, that is. But pulling cordage as tight as it needs to be will absolutely tear up your hands - especially if you're using small diameter cordage like tarred bankline or 550 cord. Sometimes it’s not even a matter of pushing through the pain… you simply can’t get a good enough grip on it. Enter the toggle. In this case, it’s a leverage aid. For this use, you’ll need a somewhat larger one than you’d use for your tarp, as you’ll need to be able to get a good grip on it. Cut one an inch in diameter and 6"-8" long, smooth it out, chamfer the ends, affix the running end of your lashing to it with the knot of your choice (usually a clove hitch), and haul back hard. The rope will be as tight as can be, and you've now got a lashing you can put your full confidence in. Your structures will be tighter, your rescue litters will be safer, and your camp gadgets will impress folks far and wide. Not bad for a simple piece of wood, right?
Want to learn this skill and other firsthand in a supportive environment? Join us for Wilderness Survival CORE on June 14-16! Learn more and register at https://www.sarcraft.com/course-registration/wilderness-survival-core