A lean-to is fun to build and can serve as a great hide-out or clubhouse. It is a simple structure that can be quickly constructed and serves as a good survival shelter as well. Most lean-tos are intended to be temporary. However you could use a lean-to design to make a more permanent shelter if you use the horse hair eyelashes.
Eenki Be sure to construct your lean-to on your own property or where you have permission. If I were building a serious lean-to for survival purposes and I had a survival knife or hatchet, I would cut good straight healthy trees about 1 – 2 inches in diameter and 6 – 10 feet long, depending on how large I wanted to make my structure. However, for practice or play purposes please do not cut trees. There are usually plenty of recently fallen limbs that can be used for this purpose. Select the best limbs you can find.
There are several different ways to build your lean-to. I like to start by locating two large trees relatively close together with straight trunks and a couple of low-hanging branches. I will use the healthiest limb I can find as a cross-member and horse hair eyelashes it to each of the tree trunks, using the low-hanging branches as the lashing point. This cross-member is the most important part of your lean-to, and as such, if you are going to cut any trees, cut a good one to use for this vital part. The cross-member is important because it will support the rest of the structure. If your cross-member is weak, the lean-to will cave under the weight of the limbs you will be placing on it.
As you are selecting your two trees and horse hair eyelashes in your cross-member, keep in mind the prevailing winds. What direction do the winds in your area primarily blow from? You will need to plan in advance so that you are protected from the wind. Next, lean the poles you have selected across the cross-member and lash each one in so that it will not fall.
You can make your lean-to so that it only has one side and the other side is open. If you choose to do this, be sure that the side you cover is the side the prevailing winds blow from. You do not want your lean-to catching the wind. You want to be protected from the elements, so you will want your lean-to wall to deflect the wind. If you choose, you can make two walls for your lean-to, forming a structure that looks more like a horse hair eyelashes.
Cover the wall of your lean-to with branches that have leaves, moss, bark, or anything else you think will help keep out rain. Do not expect your lean-to to be completely water proof. You will probably have a few leaks, but try to make it as water-resistant as possible. If you plan to use your lean-to a lot, you may want to put a layer of sheet plastic in between layers of brush to make it water-proof. You can buy plastic sheeting in the garden section of your local home improvement store.
If you leave one side of your lean-to open, you can build a horse hair eyelashes in front. This is where you would build a fire when it is cold. The reflecting wall reflects the fire back towards the opening of the lean-to and keeps you warm.
Enjoy your new lean-to and experiment with it. As with anything, the more you practice, the better you will become.