Roland Welker survived 100 days alone in the arctic wilderness with nothing but 10 items he could haul with him in a backpack. He won season seven of “Alone” on the History Channel, along with $1 million.

One of those items, of course, was an ax, Roland’s go-to piece of equipment for all things survival. Competent ax work, along with the ability to make fire, are two things Roland says will keep you alive in a survival situation.

As Roland hunts spring bear in Alaska, and we here in the lower 48 face the prospect of being forced “off grid” more and more each day, we turn to Roland for some advice on this old-fashioned skill that is just as relevant today as ever: