The Tee-Pee (Tipi) shelter has been around for ages. It is a simple design that can house many people depending on its size. Native Americans have used this design throughout the many areas of the United States.
Wood is plentiful in forest areas and the frames are using transported to the next location when tribes had to move.
To make this style shelter, you will need an ax for bow saw to cut the lodge poles. Lodge pole is the name given to the long poles of the frame that will hold the covering. The covering was usually made from buffalo hide or some other type of animal skins. Very seldom did you see an outer covering made from cloth or canvas, which would have been very scarce back in those days.
The lodge poles need to be at least 10 feet long and 4 inches in diameter. Eight lodge poles is enough to make a good long term survival Tee-Pee.
The frame is started by laying 3 poles on the ground and then tying the top narrow ends together. The frame is then stood up and each leg of the poles are equally spread out in a circle. The remaining poles are then placed evenly around the frame and tied off at the top.
An ideal outer covering for the frame would be a tarp, or old parachute that would cover the entire dwelling. But, in the event there is none, you would need to resort to covering the outer frame with pine or juniper boughs and tree bark as shown in the video.
Leave an opening at the top of the shelter to allow smoke to escape the shelter should you opt for a small fire inside. The opening can be covered if it starts to rain.
In the video, the fire will be outside near the entrance. A wooden wall is built to reflect the heat back into the shelter and to help block the wind. A door can be made to cover the entrance for colder days.
Make sure when placing the brush covering on the frame that you secure them in place. If not, the winds could blow them off leaving holes in your shelter.
This shelter is for long term stays in the wilderness. As each day passes, you should be upgrading the shelter by adding more external padding and improving on your bedding.
Be very, very careful when using a fire with this type shelter, it could catch fire quickly. You do not need a very big fire with this shelter. Keep the fire small as it will help conserve your precious fire wood.
Stay Prepared! Stay Alive!