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How to Make an Acorn Whistle

When you’re out hiking in the woods, kayaking down a river, or camping in the mountains, it’s important to always be prepared for the unexpected. Carry bear spray on you if you’re in bear country. Keep a well-stocked first aid kit in your backpack to treat insect bites, cuts, and other outdoor injuries. A water bottle is a must-have for hydration! And it’s always smart to have a signaling device on you in case you get lost or need help within the woods. A metal whistle works ok, but what if you forget it at home, lose it, or just don't have one on you because you were only planning to go on a leisurely hike?

That’s where the Acorn Whistle comes in. Acorns are found wherever there are oak trees and can be easily made into a shrill whistle with just a little practice. The whistle you create from an acorn is undeniably louder than any store-bought whistle and it could alert those around you to your need for help within the woods. Don't rely on technology to save you. Cell phones get wet, break, die, and lose service. With this neat survival trick in your back pocket, you can walk into the woods with a new level of confidence in your skills as a survivalist. Follow these directions for making an acorn whistle and you’ll learn how to create a potentially life-saving device that you can make virtually anywhere in the great outdoors. Here's how to make an acorn whistle!

Materials Needed

An acorn cap

Your hands

Your mouth


Find an acorn cap. If you can find only whole acorns, simply remove the cap from one of them. Large acorn caps work the best and are easier to hold than smaller ones, but smaller caps produce a louder whistle. Experiment with different sizes to see which you like better.

Hold the cap so that the inside of it is facing toward you. Hold the cap between your thumbs and forefingers. With your thumbs pressed firmly together, bend the tips slightly down so that your thumbs aren’t straight. Spread the tips of your thumbs apart just a little so that the ends of your thumbs make a “V” shape. There shouldn’t be any space between your thumbs (except at the tips). You should only be able to see a triangle-shaped wedge of the acorn cap between the tips of your thumbs. To get your mouth in the right position, place your top lip above your thumb knuckle and your bottom lip below it. Now blow hard through your top lip into the triangle-shaped wedge of the cap. Did you make it whistle? If not, try tipping the acorn cap up or down and try again. Silence? Adjust your thumbs to create a smaller or larger acorn cap triangle wedge. Did you do it? Keep trying until you get it adjusted just right. When you do you’ll be rewarded with a whistle so loud and ear piercing that people and animals for miles will stop what they’re doing and listen. Share this survivalist tip with fellow hikers and outdoor enthusiasts to help ensure their safety in case of an unforeseen emergency in the wilderness.

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