Valentin Marcone has just spent his third night outside while 350 gendarmes are after him.
This young father of a child is accused of having shot dead two men in Les Plantiers (Gard) and of having fled into the Cévennes natural park.
At this point, there is nothing to tell investigators that the young father had prepared some kind of survival kit to disappear in these dense coniferous forests.
Frédéric Cuvelier, specialist in commando training courses in hostile environments, mental trainer and expert in surpassing oneself, explains the basics of survival.
What are the basics of survival?
It is globally linked to vital needs.
First, you have to manage the thermal, the temperature of your body which depends on the environment and the climate.
If you are in thermal shock and you do not regulate quickly, forty-five minutes are enough to get through it.
It is enough to catch a cold snap or to be a little wet to enter into thermal shock.
The nights are cold now in the Cévennes and it is still freezing.
At zero, if we do not warm up, the body races and falls into lethargy, then falls asleep in death.
If this man does not have a minimum of equipment, it will be very complicated.
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How to warm up in the forest?
The first thing to do is a fire.
But at least you have to have a lighter.
Considering his somewhat paranoid profile, it is possible that he does not want to be noticed with flames.
The other solution is to find a cave, a cavity and make a carpet of leaves to prevent the cold from reaching us through the ground.
We can also rise or create a cover of branches to manage to regulate its thermal.
This natural “down jacket” allows a small film of air to keep the body temperature at a vital level.
If you are healthy, the body can regulate itself pretty much naturally.
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Is body temperature therefore also linked to our ability to eat?
If he has not prepared for his escape, it is possible that he has not eaten anything for three days.
And if this is his third day of the diet, it must be starting to get really tough.
This is the fateful moment.
He has weapons, he would have to hunt, but he could make himself heard.
So he might be setting traps.
Does he only have this knowledge?
There are also palliatives: insects and plants, especially in this period when nature is exploding at the level of edible plants.
But you must not be mistaken, because there is a risk of poisoning yourself.
How to find water?
Hydration is essential.
In such an environment, you can last a maximum of three days without drinking.
In the desert, it is much less.
But be careful, if you can find water, it must not be unsanitary or polluted.
Otherwise, he can quickly get diarrhea, empty himself and become dehydrated.
Once again, death is assured.
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And to rest?
This kind of individual, a little paranoid, is by definition in suspicion.
The slightest noise will put him on alert and he will have trouble sleeping.
You can't go three days without sleeping.
This is really the hinge.
You have to manage your sleep, do microsiestes.
If he does not manage his fatigue, if he suffers it, he is going to fall apart.
The brain needs to rest.
Not to mention that fatigue can push him to make mistakes, to lack attention and fall into a ravine, for example.
How do you see the mind of this fugitive?
For me, we are dealing with someone mentally strong. He entered into a strategy of mental resistance. It is surely a person who knows how to control his fear, who is very attentive and in the analysis. I am also quite surprised that a man like him has never done a survival course or is not a survivalist.