Survival expert explains what it would take for Brian Laundrie to make it in Carlton Reserve

Reporter: Justin Kase Writer: Jack Lowenstein
Published: Updated:
Survival expert Carl Griffin. Credit: WINK News.

Brian Laundrie’s dad was out in Carlton Reserve in Sarasota County Thursday after he was requested to help search for his son by investigators.

The family attorney says father Chris Laundrie showed authorities trails and places his son was known to frequent. They didn’t find anything, but their attorney says the trip was helpful.

We reported fiancé Gabby Petito’s family remembers Brian had previously boasted about his abilities as a survivalist, and we spoke to an expert about surviving in the reserve for as long as Brian has been missing.

Brian’s parents say he left for the Carlton Reserve 24 days ago, and Carl Griffin, who teaches survivalist training, says it’s very possible Brian could still be alive as long as he knows what he’s doing.

Griffin spoke to us about what it would take for someone to survive for weeks at a time in those conditions. Griffin has taught survival skills on his 30-acre ranch in Ocala for decades. He says there’s a big difference between an experienced camper and an experienced survivalist.

“The first, often experienced camper, will come in with truckloads of supplies,” Griffin explained. “They’ll overpack.”

Earlier this week, Gabby’s family was asked about Brian’s skills in the wilderness when they interviewed on Dr. Phil.

“I believe he bragged about that; that he’s good at that stuff,” mother Nichole Schmidt said on Dr. Phil.

Griffin differentiated between the necessities and things you can get by without in the conditions Brian could be experiencing.

“The main issue is food, water and shelter,” Griffin said. “He can get by with just a simple poncho. It’s one of the things I teach. That’s a great shelter, and it’s easy; it’s lightweight.”

Griffin also says water purification tablets or a purification straw could ensure access to clean water, but the biggest challenge might be food.

“One of the best survival tools you can have is a fishing pole,” Griffin said. “He could get more protein from a fishing pole than anything else.”

Griffin pointed out that some of the camping trips we know Brian took were with other people, and he says it is more difficult to survive when you are isolated and can’t rely on anyone else but yourself.

Griffin also said an experienced survivalist can find medicine or remedies out in the wilderness, but there are just as many things that you would need to watch out for.

“He has to know what’s deadly, what’s poisonous, what not to eat,” Griffin said. “Because that’s another thing I teach here that’s so valuable. Because you never eat a green bean when you’re out in the woods. They’re usually very toxic and harmful.”

Copyright ©2024 Fort Myers Broadcasting. All rights reserved.

This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without prior written consent.