>"and wasted nearly the whole animal because he didn't know how to preserve the meat."
When I got up here 15 years ago, I was great at temperate-climate hiking and backpacking, decent at skiing and okay at handling myself down to 10F. I had only caught one fish in my life. The only mammal I'd killed was a dog crossing the highway at night. I was pretty good with edible plants.
Once I got here, I learned:
dog mushing from my doctor.
how to dig clam, clean clams and cook them from a homeless guy.
how to catch trout and salmon with a rod&reel from friends.
how to catch salmon with a net from someone who shared his fishing site with me.
halibut fishing first on charters and then with friends.
how to be comfortable at -20F and to survive at -40F.
how to skin out and butcher bear and caribou from a Native friend. And hard-shell calming and mushrooming from his wife.
smoking fish and making jerky from friends, off the internet, trail&error and keeping notes.
In the 600,000-year history of our species, I'm sure hunter-gatherers went through such a learning process. But at a younger age, from more skilled adults and elders, and more earnestly. Leaving behind your trust fund, car keys and mattress doesn't instantly make you a Noble Savage. Years and years of learning from others and one's own trail&error gets you there. And "there" isn't a solo trip. "There" is as a contributing member of a group with varied skills and knowledge who work together (and still sometimes have to cast the youngest or oldest out on the ice flow for the good of the group).