There are many types of wilderness survival shelters that can be constructed manually in emergencies. For example, you can make a quick poncho tent with log-bones and a huge poncho as the cover, a one-pole parachute tepee, or you can go with a lean-to type of shelter. Either one will protect you from immediate elements in spontaneous situations. Still, aluminum sheets are one of the best types in the great outdoors for many reasons, and should always be in your supplies somewhere as you are planning to hike terrain that you are not that familiar with.
This is because shiny aluminum shelters are very visible to anybody who is trying to find and rescue you. If it is a sunny day, this type of tent is one of the most visible things for an aircraft to spot when looking for you. The sun will reflect brightly off the surface of this shelter and catch their eye. Some people call aluminum sheets “space blankets” because they look like they are from a different planet! They are also called thermal blankets and energy blankets at times.
Whether you use them all the time or not, they will be very useful someday if you ever happen to get lost. If you are walking around in these, you’ll stand out in your wooded environment and be easily spotted from afar. And, if you only have a regular tent, you can always use these to place over the top of it to be seen more easily from overhead. These blankets, being that they are aluminum, will also retain a lot of your immediate body heat. Most of the large ones have a couple of layers, and can be used over and over again. But, if you frequently go on warm-climate outdoor expeditions more than anything, simply having a few “space blankets” on hand for emergencies will suffice.