Here in the Southeast, bowhunters often find themselves hunting in swamps where the ground is wet, muddy, and infested with unfriendly, creepy-crawling critters. The way to escape these conditions for an overnight stay is to construct what I refer to as a swamp roost. For this tip, a picture is worth a thousand words.

To build the swamp roost, first cut seven saplings about 7-8 feet long. Bind one end of two saplings together so that they can be spread apart to form legs. Repeat for a second set of legs. Position the two leg sets about seven feet apart and lash another sapling to the top, connecting them to form a frame. Stand the frame up and spread the legs an equal distance apart. Stabilize the frame by lashing it to a standing sapling or two.

Fold a tarp or ground cloth in half and tie the grommets together securely to form a pocket. Insert two saplings to form a litter when spread apart, as though to transport an accident victim. Position the litter in such a way that the protruding saplings are on the outside of the saplings forming the legs at either end. When weight is placed on the litter, it will stretch tight and slide into place on the legs, limiting its downward travel. The height of the litter can be adjusted by moving the “leg” saplings in or out, but be sure they are fairly even. Add a mosquito net and another tarp draped over the top sapling for protection from rain, and you have a comfy, sturdy, weather- and insect-proof swamp roost.