Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Harry Potter and Wilderness Survival

OK, it had to be done. If you're sick and tired of hearing the name Harry Potter, you might want to skip this post. But since the last book in the series sees our young wizard spending a fair bit of time in the woods, I figured it would be fun to see how the average witch or wizard would cope in the backcountry with nothing but a wand. I will only refer to spells/charms that actually come up in the books, because you could speculate just about anything.

Navigation: Harry does use a spell in "Goblet of Fire" which helps him to find his way through a maze by pointing his wand north. So basically you'd have a compass. Good start.

Warmth: Wands are used for starting fires throughout the books, so given some wood to burn warmth would not be a problem.

Rain Gear: At one point, Hermione puts a spell on Harry's glasses so that they'll repel water during a Quiddich match. If you put the same spell on your clothes, you could theoretically walk in the rain without getting wet.

Food: This is tougher. As far as the books suggest, you can't just conjure food out of thin air. I'd suggest finding a river with fish in it, and then stunning the fish so you can grab them. Or the "impedimentia" jinx would stop them from being able to swim away. Also, you can use an engorgement spell to make things bigger, so a few edible mushrooms or berries found by the trail could be increased in size to make a decent feed.

Water: There are moments when wizards have water spew forth from their wands in the books, so I guess as long as that water is clean there's no need to carry or filter any. Which is good, because I haven't heard of any anti-Giardia spell.

SOS: This one's easy. From their first year in school the young witches and wizards learn to send sparks into the air from their wands to call for help.

Of course, if an adult wizard were lost in the woods, he could simply disapparate and show up back at home. But then, that would be cheating!

OK, I'm done indulging my Harry Potter addiction. I'll get back to reality next post!


Frank and Sue said...

Nice post Michelle, made me laugh. Have a great weekend

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