Tactical Pens for Survival and Self-Defense

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Tactical Pens for Survival and Self-Defense   Although many people rely on guns for self defense even when they’re away from home, others cannot for a number of reasons. It could be that firearms are illegal where they live, or that they’re afraid of owning them, maybe even against it. In such circumstances, you’re left with …

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Concealed Carry Revolvers

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by Nicholas

Even in the 21st Century where concealed carry semi-automatics from .32 to .45 gauge have taken the market by storm, the traditional revolver holds strong. Revolvers continue to sell off the shelves in droves, and the likely reason is that people know that you can always depend on a revolver to save your life.

The semi-auto vs. revolver debate has been going for many years and will likely never end. Every individual has their preferences. But even though semi-automatics have become more modern and updated with each passing year, the basic design of the revolver still holds many advantages over a semi-automatic.

Let’s go over what these advantages are, and then talk about 5 of the best-concealed carry revolvers on the market.

WHY CHOOSE A REVOLVER OVER A SEMI-AUTO PISTOL FOR CONCEALED CARRY?

There’s no denying that there are many appealing reasons to own a semi-automatic rather than a revolver. Semi-autos typically hold more bullets, are easier and faster to reload, and today’s models are highly ergonomic.

Still, revolvers continue to hold their own against the semi-automatic when it comes to concealed carry. There are many advantages with a revolver that you won’t get with a semi-auto and that benefit you for concealed carry and self-defense. These advantages include:

It’s Simple

Revolvers are so simple that even those who have never even touched a gun before can figure out how to use one. Ease of use can prove to be immensely beneficial to you if you need to use your backup revolver to arm someone else in an emergency defense situation. There are no safeties to switch off or slides to manipulate, just point and shoot.

It’s Reliable

Yes, semi-automatics are reliable too, but all a revolver needs to do is turn the cylinder to fire the next round. For overall reliability, a revolver is hard to beat.

You Can Jam It into Someone in a Close-Range Fight

In a close fight where an opponent is physically attacking you, you would have to fire your weapon at point blank range. The problem with a semi-automatic in this situation is if you jam the muzzle into your attacker, the slide will be pushed out of battery and cause it to jam or not even fire. The barrel of the revolver has no effect on the cylinder, so you can jam it into an opponent up close and still fire all of your rounds if you had to.

It’s Safe

While revolvers don’t have manual safeties, they do have long trigger pulls (at least on double action). The long trigger pull makes them safe guns to carry.

These are just four of the biggest reasons to carry a revolver over a semi-auto. Semi-autos have their advantages as well, but the advantages to owning a revolver are undeniably compelling.

Now that we know the reasons to owning a revolver over a semi-auto, let’s find out about what some of the best-concealed carry revolvers are:

RUGER LCR

The Ruger LCR was revolutionary upon its first release in 2009. It was the first successful polymer-framed revolver available (although the inside of the frame is aluminum alloy). The polymer frame made it very lightweight in comparison to its main competitor, the Smith & Wesson J-Frame series or Ruger’s SP101. Lightweight and reliable, the LCR is an excellent choice for concealed carry in general.

Today the Ruger LCR is available in numerous calibers, including .22 LR, .22 Magnum, .38 Special, 9mm Luger, .357 Magnum, and .327 Federal Magnum. In other words, you have options!

Beyond calibers, the LCR is available in numerous configurations. While the standard model has a 2-inch barrel and covered hammer (called hammerless), it is also available with an exposed hammer and/or a 3-inch barrel instead.

As with all Ruger DA revolvers, the LCR features a push button cylinder release that will allow the cylinder to swing out when depressed.

RUGER SP101

The Ruger SP101 is built like a tank, and you’ll feel it when you hold it. While the SP101 is easily the heaviest revolver in this list, the trade off is enhanced durability and shoot ability. A major complaint about compact or snub nose revolvers, in general, is that they are difficult to shoot and have heavy recoil. Recoil is severely mitigated with the SP101.

The SP101 holds five rounds of .357 Magnum, which means it can also chamber and shoot .38 Special if you desire a lighter round. Also, Ruger also makes the SP101 in .327 Federal Magnum, which holds six rounds.

Standard SP101’s have exposed hammers, but so-called ‘hammerless’ variants are also available. You also have your choice between a 2-inch, 3-inch, or 4-inch barrel.

All in all, even if you find the SP101 a little heavier than you would like for concealed carry, you should at least find it to be one of the more easy-to-shoot compact revolvers on the market. Just like the LCR, it features a push button cylinder release on the side that will swing out the cylinder when depressed.

SMITH & WESSON J-FRAME

There are so many Smith & Wesson J-Frame designs in general that we cannot narrow it down to just one specific model for this article. The J-Frame, which has been around since 1950, is simply the smallest frame of the revolver in Smith & Wesson’s lineup and is designed exclusively for concealed carry.

J-Frame revolvers are small, light, steel framed, and reliable. They’ve served as CCW weapons for civilians and as backup guns for detectives and police officers for decades, including today.

While the J-Frame wasn’t the first snub nose revolver ever released (the Colt Detective Special had been out for over two decades beforehand), it was arguably the gun that made the snub nose revolver iconic and popular with civilians.

The success of the J-Frame has prompted Smith & Wesson to release several variants. All variants feature a standard capacity of five rounds either in .38 Special or .357 Magnum and feature a cylinder release on the side that must be pushed forward (rather than down on Ruger models), to release the cylinder.

Here are the basic types of Smith & Wesson J-Frame revolvers currently offered and the features of each one:

  • Model 36 – Original J-Frame, still in production
  • Model 642/442 – hammerless .38 Special J-frame; 642 is stainless, and 442 is black
  • Model 637 – hammered version of the 642
  • Model 60 – .357 Magnum version of the Model 36
  • Model 640 – hammerless version of the Model 60
  • M&P Bodyguard – polymer-framed, hammerless J-Frame with Crimson Trace laser sight

TAURUS 85

The Taurus 85 is essentially a cheaper clone of the Smith & Wesson J-Frame series, but that doesn’t make it poor quality. If you desire a concealed carry on a budget, you’ll want to give the Taurus 85 a hard look. On the outside, the Model 85 resembles a J-Frame clear and through. Like the J-Frame, it features a five-shot cylinder with a cylinder release that must be pressed forward.

But an interesting feature of the 85 is the option to remove the hammer to create a ‘hammerless model.’  Simply twist the hammer to the side, and you will then be able to remove it from the gun. It’s a neat feature for a revolver and one that gives you the option of having either a hammered or ‘hammerless’ revolver without having to buy one of each.

The Model 85 is offered as a blued model or in stainless steel. As with all Taurus guns, it comes equipped with Taurus’s Trademark Security System: insert a key that comes with the gun into a keyhole behind the hammer, twist it, and the gun will be rendered inoperable. The security system you some peace of mind if you store the 85 in your house and have small children running around.

TAURUS JUDGE PUBLIC DEFENDER POLYMER REVOLVER

Another interesting concealed carry revolver from Taurus is the Judge Public Defender Polymer Revolver. This is the famous (or infamous) Taurus Judge .410/.45 LC that has been shrunk down for concealed carry. As the name suggests, it has a polymer-frame to reduce the weight.

The Public Defender offers you devastating self-defense capabilities in either chambering. A .45 Long Colt round offers far more power than the standard .38 Special or even the .357 Magnum. A self-defense buckshot load of .410 Bore will be near the equivalent of shooting three 9mm FMJ rounds at once.

It should be noted that the Public Defender is designed for extremely close-range defensive use only. To this end, it may be more suited as an anti-carjacking gun rather than for concealed carry, but still, there’s something very comforting about having five shots of .410 buckshot on your person.

CONCLUSION

All in all, revolvers are old, but they’re not yet antiquated. They’ve been around for many years, and they will be around for many more years. While they have their pros and cons, it’s incredibly unlikely that a revolver will fail you in a self-defense situation. And that reliability is what matters the most for a concealed carry weapon. Any one of the five types of concealed carry revolvers we’ve gone over is a suitable choice for concealed carry and armed personal defense.

Tactical Pens

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by Ryan

The best items for your everyday carry kit are items that are hidden in plain sight.  Items that you can use in your everyday life allow you to expand your kit without having to keep that item concealed.  A tactical pen is simply a pen designed for uses other than writing.  It must be a functional writing tool, but tactical pens are typically designed for self-defense.  Even airlines will often let you carry your tactical pen.  They are great for stabbing at vulnerable points like the neck and eyes.  However, they also allow you to target pressure points for non-lethal force.

Why a Tactical Pen?

There are several reasons that a tactical pen could be a better option than other concealable weapons.

  • Multiple Functions – Unlike a handgun or knife, a pen can be used for several different every day and survival purposes. When building any survival kit, multifunction tools allow you to keep the kit as small as possible.
  • Non-threatening – If you are going to be attacked, it can often be beneficial to appear unarmed. Guns or knives must be hidden to accomplish this.  If a gun or knife is seen, an assailant will often disarm you immediately.  With a tactical pen, you are hiding your weapon in plain sight.  An attacker will rarely confiscate a tactical pen.
  • Cannot Be Used Against You – One of the most dangerous aspects of carrying a gun or knife is that your attacker can use it against you. It takes little skill or experience for an attacker to injure or kill you with conventional weapons.  However, an attacker will rarely have the skill to use a tactical pen against you.  In fact, in most cases they will be more inclined to use their bare hands.
  • Element of Surprise – Many would say that your greatest advantage in a physical confrontation is the element of surprise. A weapon that does not appear to be a weapon is an excellent way to gain this advantage.
  • Non-lethal – In most cases a strike from a tactical pen will disable an attacker without doing any permanent damage. This is preferable in most situations.
  • Easy to Conceal – A tactical pen is much easier to hide in your pocket than other weapons. Most knives and guns must have a sheath or holster specifically designed for concealment.
  • Inexpensive – Most tactical pens are much less expensive than a gun or knife.

How to Choose a Tactical Pen

When choosing a tactical pen, there are several variables to consider.  Most people only own one tactical pen, so it is important that you pick the right one.  Here are some points to think about when choosing your pen:

Material – Tactical pens are typically made of one solid piece of metal.  Unlike a normal pen, they are designed to take an impact without bending or breaking.  Most are made with aircraft grade aluminum, but some are even made from titanium.  The strength of your pen will be based on the material type and design.

Grip – With a pen being small and cylindrical, is could easily slip out of your hand after impact.  A good tactical pen will have design elements to prevent it from slipping.  Some have ridges designed to fall in between your fingers for a better grip, while others are tapered in the middle and fatter on the ends.  Ideally, you want some sort of design element to improve your grip.

Appearance – If a tactical pen looks too different from a normal pen, it defeats the purpose.  You want it to completely blend in.  If it is obviously a weapon or tool, other people are that much more likely to try to take it from you.

Function – Any tactical pen should have a sharp point for stabbing, but some are so much more.  These days you can buy tactical pens with glass breakers, fire starters, whistles, and styluses.  Some even have flashlights built in to the pen.  The newer models have DNA catchers to allow police to identify your attacker after the attack is over.  The more functions your tactical pen can cover, the fewer items you need in your EDC kit.

Here are a few quality models that you can consider purchasing:

How to Use a Tactical Pen

If you are attacked, there are specific points to target on the human body.  The tactical pen is not a knife or sword.  You cannot just swing it at an assailant and defend yourself.  You have to be surgical.  If you hit the right points, you will easily disable your attacker.

Remember that your goal is simply to get away from your attacker.  You do not want to use lethal force if you can avoid it, but you also do not want to give your attacker a chance to recover and hurt you.  The key to this strategy is multiple strikes.  When you find a point of impact, hit it several times before you back off and try to escape. This will ensure that your attacker stays down.

Here are some points to target on the human body:

Hands – Hitting an attacker in the palm, knuckles, or back of the hand is very painful.  Often an attacker will grab your arm or shoulder, so their hand is readily available to strike.  In many cases you can break the smaller bones in the hand with just one strike.

Feet – If you find yourself on the ground at the feet of your attacker, this is an opportune time to strike.  Attackers assume you are not a threat when you are on the ground, so this gives you the element of surprise.  Striking the feet of your attacker will likely not break the skin, but it might break bones.  In addition, the natural reaction to this type of injury is for the attacker to drop to the ground.  This gives you an ideal opportunity to flee.

Knees – The knees are another vulnerable part of the leg that will drop a man to the ground.  If you stab at the front or back of the knees, it will be very painful.  In addition, there are tendons and ligaments that can be damaged.  This would keep your attacker from following as you run.

Thighs – The thighs are meaty and make a good target for a tactical pen.  A strike to the inside or the outside of the thigh is normally very painful.  However, there are also pressure points on the inside of the thigh that intensify the pain.

Groin – Any strike to the groin is painful, but with a tactical pen that pain is amplified.  This is an easy way to drop a man to his knees.  You will likely have enough time to get away after just one good strike.

Ribs – The ribs are always a vulnerable spot on a person.  There is little flesh to protect the bones and internal organs.  A good strike with a tactical pen can break ribs or cause internal bleeding.  It is incredibly painful as well.

Sternum – The breast plate is a spot that can easily be injured, but it adds a psychological edge as well.  Any time you strike areas near vital organs, the injured person is likely to fall to the ground and curl into the fetal position.  Until they realize exactly what has happened, they think their life is in danger.  This is a great time to run for it.

Arm pits – You would not think this is a prime area to target, but the arm pits have little protection and lots of nerve endings.  If you can catch your attacker with their arm up, hold it in place with your left hand and strike with your right.  It is very painful and should drop him to his knees.

Neck – The neck is one of the few places on the body where you can actually kill somebody with a tactical pen.  A strike to the base of the neck on the jugular vein could render an attacker unconscious, while a strike to the throat could cause death. If you have no other choice, this is the spot for which to aim.

Eyes – The eyes are always a great non-lethal spot to target.  Not only is a strike to the eyes painful, but it makes it virtually impossible for your attacker to follow you.

Head – Any strike to the head is going to be painful.  In addition, it can cause a great deal of bleeding.  This can blind your opponent or just make them more concerned with their own well-being.

Once you have selected your tactical pen, take the time to practice with it.  It is important that you are comfortable targeting these specific areas when the pressure is on.  It is one thing to know the areas to target, but another thing to be able to act swiftly when attacked.  Practicing in low lighting or with the sun in your eyes is also a good idea.

In addition to practicing where to strike, it is also important that you practice how to strike.  Tactical pens can be held like a sword for thrusting forward, or they can be held backhanded for a downward stabbing motion.  In most cases, sword style will give you more accuracy with your strikes.  Your attacker is also less likely to block this type of movement.  However, each tactical pen has a different shape and grip.  You may decide that your pen works best by holding it a different way.  It is important that you can stab a solid, heavy object without the pen slipping or dislodging.

Also, while practicing, remember that your best move is to stab repeatedly at one particular spot.  This means that your grip has to allow you to keep making the same motion without it slipping. In most cases, you do not want to stop making contact until your attacker is on the ground or disabled in some other way.  However, at that point it is best to run for help.  Legally speaking, you can be charged with assault if you keep striking after your assailant is obviously disabled. Do what is needed to get away and then make a run for it.  If you have hit the right spots, you should have no problem getting to safety.

The Left Says Terrorism Isn’t a big Deal. Pathetic.

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by Isabella

For those of us who have attempted to talk some sense into a leftist in regards to Muslims, Islamic terrorists and the threat they pose to our lives and Western civilization, you probably heard that one of two things.  Either that the West deserves to the victim of terrorism, or that terrorism isn’t really a big deal and I shouldn’t be so focused on such an irrelevant issue that poses such an insignificant threat to me, this coming from someone that more than likely thinks traditional gender roles are something worth getting upset about.  But since leftist can’t think for themselves where do they get these ideas from, and is there anything to the assertion that Islamic terrorism is minor threat and not as worthy of our attention as other issues?

Let’s start by taking a look at a quintessential leftist propaganda piece that takes this position.  The Washington Post published an article in November of 2015 by Andrew Shaver entitled You are More Likely to be Fatally Crushed by Furniture than Killed by a Terrorist.  Shaver makes claims like “…while the Paris attacks left some 130 people dead, roughly three times that number of French citizens died on that same day from cancer.”

What Shaver doesn’t mention is that most of the people that died of cancer that day weren’t in same age demographic as those killed in the Paris attack he refers to, and that if it wasn’t cancer some other natural death would soon claim them, while the victims of the Paris attack could have lived on for decades.  Shaver goes on to compare Islamic terrorism favorably to such unnatural killers as auto-accidents, which is ironic because gun advocates are always bringing up the amount of auto related deaths compared to the deaths from firearms that the Washington Post loves to spotlight.

That being said, however, Shaver is right.  More people will die from diabetes, car crashes, and cancer than they will from Islamic terrorism, and I congratulate him on actually using the term “Islamic terrorism”.  But does that mean that we should open our arms and our borders?  Not exactly.

There are two reasons why.  One, Islamic terrorism is often not called Islamic terrorism, and two, Muslims do a lot more than hijack plains or cut people’s heads off.

Let’s quickly address the first reason.  In America, Obama has a history of not being willing to even use the term “Islamic terrorism.”  He has gone as far as to call the Fort Hood massacre “workplace violence” even though the shooter who was in contact with al-Qaeda was shouting “Allahu Akbar!” while shooting U.S. service men.

Obama also referred to the shooting of Jews at a kosher supermarket by Muslims in Paris was a “random” shooting.  But this sort of disconnect between acts of terrorism carried out by Muslims in the name of Allah and the term Islamic terrorism is not confined to the United States.  In Germany, when a Muslim terrorist who had sworn allegiance to ISIS attempted to kill scores of innocent Germans at a music festival with a suicide bomb hidden in a backpack that did end up injuring over a dozen bystanders, Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann said “We don’t know if this man planned on suicide or if he had the intention of killing others”.

As if depression often drives people to seek out black market explosives and pledge allegiance to terrorist organizations before killing yourself with a bomb strapped to you in a crowded area without ever wanting to harm anyone else.  But can he be blamed?

Maybe he just gets his news from the BBC, which ran the headline “German Blast Kills Syrian Migrant” when reporting on the incident.  That’s right, “German Blast”.  So, one reason why leftists think that Islamic terrorism is not a legitimate threat to their health and way of life is because when it happens, the media and even national leaders of the countries that are attacked often don’t treat it as if it was in fact Islamic terrorism.

Even if one were to adjust the statistics to accommodate for all the deception Islamic terrorism would still not rank very high when it came to causes of death.  But that brings us to our other point.  What are these upstanding citizens doing when they’re not offering us the benefits of multiculturalism that comes with suicide bombings, shootings, and machete attacks?

In Norway, for instance, they can hardly find the time to carry out an act of terrorism with all the rape they are busy committing.  Rape seems to be the number one import that follows Muslim “refugees” these days, but nowhere is it as evident to those with a rational mind (which does not seem to include the Norwegian authorities), as in Norway’s capital city of Onslow.  Non-white immigrants account for 100% of reported violent rape attackers.  That’s right, literally every single case of rape in Onslow was committed by an immigrant, a non-white immigrant which means that we are not talking about Swedish men coming to Norway for fresh victims, but African and Middle-Eastern Muslims.

What has been the near-universal response from European leaders to the rape epidemic?  They promote Sharia law of course.  Well, I’m sure that they don’t come right out and say it that way, but under Sharia law, a woman is required to dress “modestly” and is not allowed to travel alone.  A school official in Bavaria Germany sent a letter home to parents that told them their daughters need to dress “modestly” because the gym nearby was being used to house Muslim migrants.

Among other things the letter stated that “shorts and skirts” could lead to “misunderstandings.”  Vienna’s chief of police told women not to go out alone; maybe he meant well, maybe he was just taking the lazy approach to his job since covering up rapes wasn’t working for him anymore.  Either way, Muslims are not being rounded up and deported, instead Western women are being told to adhere to Sharia which demands that they dress “modestly” and have an “escort” when outside of the home.

Even the kids get in on the exchange of culture.  In Halifax, Canada, refugee children (because I guess some of them actually are children and not only military aged males) were reported to have choked a third grade girl with a chain while shouting “Muslims rule the world”.  The girl’s mother said that school faculty intervened, but that there was no discipline taken against the assailants.  The mother, who wanted to be referred to only as “Missy,” said that her daughter begs not to go to school now because of constant violent bullying.

In Twin Falls, Idaho, two elementary school aged Muslim boys stripped and sexually assaulted a 5 year old white girl while a 14 year old Muslim recorded the scene, then they urinated on her and her clothing.  Several leftist propaganda outlets “debunked” this incident because it was originally reported that the boys were Syrian refugees and that they used a knife in their attack.

The boys were not Syrian and they didn’t use a knife, they were from Sudan and Iraq, and no weapon was reported to have been used.  But they did sexually assault a 5-year-old before humiliating her further by urinating on her while filing the attack to enjoy watching later.  Local residents that complained about Muslims being forced on their community without their consent were labeled racist and white supremacists by city council members.   At least these incidents were only ignored or denied, instead of the victims being told that they caused their attacks by not following Sharia law carefully enough.

But maybe we are just “getting carried away” as the leftists would say.  After all those rapes all over the European continent were the fault of the women who didn’t dress moderately enough, or they were consenting and made up the rape charges because of racism.  Maybe assaulting a 5-year-old and urinating on her was just the result of a “misunderstanding” because of what she was wearing or maybe it was just kids being kids.

Surely adult Muslim men don’t victimize young girls, and if they did the European authorities would do something to stop it and punish them right?

Of course not.

The Higher Regional Court in Bamberg, Bavaria recently ruled that it was perfectly legal for a 14-year-old girl to be “married” to her 20-year-old cousin.  Why?  Because they were married in Syria and the “marriage” was conducted under Sunni marriage rites.  This ruling has set a precedent that is only going to get worse, 14 is not at all young for a Muslim “bride”, in fact 9 isn’t too young since Muhammad married a 6-year-old and consummated the “marriage” when the girl was 9.  I use quotations for all of this because I refuse to validate the rape of a child that is too young to give consent with terms used for legitimate relationships between adults.  So, once again Sharia law is the answer.

Surprisingly, women and children are not the only targets of Islamic violence and aggression.

Occasionally, when in large enough numbers Muslims might even attack grown men.  This happened a few years ago in Whales when a mob of pro-Palestine Muslims attacked a group made up mainly of men that were seated outside a pub.  Why were they attacked?  Because they were drinking alcohol and eating pork products.  Someone should have told these ignorant Brits that if they wanted to prevent further attacks they shouldn’t have voted for Brexit, they should have just instituted Sharia law to keep the Muslims from getting justifiably violent when offended.

Surely that kind of stuff only happens in Europe, not in America, right?  Well, not exactly.  During the Dearborn, Michigan Arab festival of both 2009 and 2010, Dearborn police stopped the distribution of religious pamphlets by a Christian organization comprised mainly of former Muslims.

This is a direct violation of American’s 1st amendment rights, since the festival was takin place in public and the Muslims were themselves distributing religious information.  Some of the Christians were even arrested.  I’m not sure what charges were trumped up against them, but I doubt the charges were as honest as to admit that Sharia law was being protected.  It is against Sharia law to attempt to persuade a Muslim to leave his religion, and it is a capital crime for that Muslim to choose to leave Islam.

There is also the famous “clock boy” incident. Ahmed Mohamad, a 14-year-old high school student of Sudanese descent, brought a “clock” he had “made” to school. The supposed clock was simply a reassembled digital clock he’d put into a pencil case, and his teacher, alarmed, sent him to the principal’s office where they called the police, because the “clock” resembled a bomb. He was arrested and questioned by police officers, who determined he had no malicious intent and released him to his parents.

The story went viral, with angry social media pitchfork mobs crying racism and Islamophobia. The boy was invited to several prestigious events relating to young people and science, and even visited the White House where his creativity was hailed by president Obama. His family also sued the city of Irvine, Texas, and received millions in compensation for their “emotional trauma”.

Nevermind that the clock he made did indeed resemble a homemade bomb, and we live in an age of constant paranoia about gruesome acts of violence committed on our schoolchildren. Because he was Muslim, apparently the school officials and police officers had no right to take precaution. When the president himself bends over backwards to accommodate someone suspected of terrorism, what does that say about our nation’s willingness to stand up against Sharia law, rape, and violence at the hands of immigrants? Or authentic terrorism itself?

But maybe I’m just overreacting.  If diabetes is more dangerous than terrorism, then maybe I shouldn’t worry about being attacked for drinking a beer, arrested for telling a Muslim that Mohammad was a false prophet, or my wife and female family members being raped and urinated on either.  I am just prone to overreacting I guess.  Worrying won’t make me any safer, I should instead spend my time concerning myself with my blood sugar and the finer points of Sharia law.  And anyone who says otherwise is a white supremacist, as always.

Everyday Carry Kids for Kids

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Have you ever thought about what your kid carries with him every day? While you can expect him or her to be able to survive any disaster, making sure he has these survival items with him in his backpack could make a huge difference.

This article written on Everyday Carry Experts shows exactly which edc items to get for your kids depending on their age. Read more

(Just keep in mind part of the reason why you’re doing this is to plant the seed in your child’s mind, so that, when he grows up, he’ll become a real prepper and protector of his family.)

Check Out The Best Survival Backpacks

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via BugOutBagExperts.com

Finding the right backpack to keep your BOB items in is not an easy task. You need something reliable, you need something you can carry.

Depending on your age, sex, location, climate, level of fitness and so on, you need to make a decision on which backpack to get.

Hint: if you’re on a tight budget, you might find an old backpack somewhere in the attic that you could use. Just keep in mind that, in case of a bug out, it might not be strong enough to hold your gear together.

Whatever decision you make, it’s up to you to get informed, so click here to learn more about survival backpacks.

Walther PPQ M2 9mm Review

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by Nicholas

Ever since the Glock first became popular in the 1980s, there has been a nearly countless number of polymer framed, striker fired pistols that adopted the same concept. While some of these pistols may have fallen short of the high bar that Glock set, others exceeded it. One such example is the Walther PPQ.

Walther has always been a gun manufacturer who has introduced a unique innovation with each new firearm released, and the PPQ is no exception. When the M1 model was first released in 2011, the big selling point was its trigger, purported to be the smoothest of any production striker fired pistol in the world.

There was just one significant criticism of the PPQ from American shooters. They disliked the European-style paddle magazine release. Walther listened and in 2013 released a revised model that featured an American-style push button release instead. This was the PPQ M2.

ERGONOMICS

The first thing to talk about with the PPQ is its ergonomics, which are stellar. While obviously, opinions on pistol ergonomics are subjectively biased, reaction to the feel of the grip on the PPQ has been overwhelmingly positive.

Walther has long been known for producing some of the most ergonomic pistols on the market. The texturing on the PPQ’s grip is designed to be more aggressive than that of the earlier P99 model. The grip also has three-fingered grooves that help the grip mold into the hand better and make slippage in wet environments less of an issue.

The PPQ also sells with three separate back straps: small, medium, and large (medium comes standard on the gun). Simply pop out the pin at the base of a grip with a screwdriver, swap out the back, and then push the pin back inside.

FEATURES

The PPQ is equally as simple as a Glock. There are no external safeties on the gun, other than the lever on the front of the trigger that must be depressed for the rest of the trigger to pull. The slide release is present on both sides of the gun for true ambidexterity, and it is larger and easier to release than the Glock as well.

While the push button magazine release is not truly ambidextrous, it is reversible, and therefore adaptable for left-handed shooters.

The PPQ also features a loaded chamber indicator that you will find near the ejection port. When the weapon is chambered, the extractor will be slightly pulled back and reveal a red marking that signifies the gun is loaded. Even in dark conditions, you can feel the extractor has been pulled back to tell you there is a round in the chamber is loaded.

On the dust cover of the PPQ, you will find a Picatinny accessory rail upon which you can mount lights, lasers, or whatever accessories you like to add to your pistols. A light, in particular, would be a good thing to add if you want to use the PPQ as a nightstand gun and want to have a two-handed grip over your gun instead of having one hand on the gun and one hand holding the light.

But the greatest feature of the PPQ and the single feature that has caused it to sell so well for Walther is the trigger. In fact, the trigger is a category of its own. Walther claims it is the smoothest and lightest trigger of any production striker fired pistol on the market, and you’ll be inclined to believe it when you shoot it for yourself.

The average trigger pull on the PPQ is between 4.5-5.5 pounds (if you use a trigger gauge, the trigger pull on any pistol won’t be identical with each shot). There’s a short and very smooth take-up before you get to the break, which is very crisp has a mere 0.1-inch reset. This neat of a trigger means the PPQ is excellent for firing follow-up shots.

RELIABILITY AND DURABILITY

As usual with Walther firearms, the PPQ has already proved in the five years of its existence to be an extraordinarily reliable firearm, on par with Glock. It will effortlessly feed any kind of ammo that you put through it. I’ve never encountered any jams or misfires of any kind with my personal PPQ.

The durability of the PPQ is also noteworthy. As with Glock, Walther coats the steel slide in a tough Tenifer finish, which will easily resist moisture and physical force. You may get a few light scratches here and there, but you can use the PPQ when it’s raining hard out, wipe it down afterward, and you won’t need to worry about rust or corrosion getting on the gun.

The polymer frame of the PPQ is also durable just like a Glock, and there have been very few reports of it ever failing or cracking.

ACCURACY AND SHOOTING

The PPQ is a blast to shoot. Part of this is due to the incredible trigger. The PPQ comes equipped with standard white three dot sights (which are made of polymer, unfortunately.) It would be better if the sights were metal like the rest of the slide, which is very easy to see when preparing to shoot.

The PPQ is also a highly accurate gun for its type. Again, the natural ergonomics and trigger no doubt play a role in this. At distances of twenty to thirty yards, I have found my PPQ to be among the most accurate 9mm pistols that I have ever shot.

FIELD STRIPPING

As is customary with pistols these days, the PPQ is extraordinarily simple to field strip.

Follow these steps when field stripping the PPQ:

  • Remove the magazine
  • Eject the round from the chamber (check the chamber even if it isn’t loaded)
  • Pull the trigger to release the striker (check again beforehand that the gun is empty)
  • Press down on the tabs on the frame above the trigger
  • This will release the slide, which you can then pull from the frame
  • Remove the guide rod and barrel from the slide to clean

Simply reverse these steps to reassemble.

VARIANTS

While my personal PPQ is the 9mm M2 model with a 4-inch barrel, Walther offers the PPQ in many other variations.

Walther currently offers the PPQ in .22 LR, 9mm, .40 S&W, and .45 ACP. The 9mm version is also available with the paddle release as the M1, while the .22 LR, 9mm, and .40 S&W versions are also offered with a longer 5-inch barrel for target shooting or competition use.

The capacity of the PPQ for each of the calibers is as follows:

  • .22 LR: 12 Rounds
  • 9mm: 15 Rounds (Standard) or 17 Rounds (Extended)
  • .40 S&W: 11 rounds (standard) or 13 Rounds (Extended)
  • .45 ACP: 12 rounds

9mm or .40 S&W P99 magazines will also work in the M1 variants of the PPQ with the paddle release; they will not work in the M2 models like mine that have the push button magazine release instead.

CUSTOMIZATION AND ACCESSORIES

While customization choices on the PPQ are currently limited in contrast to more commonplace guns such as Glock or the M&P, you still have options. The number of options is only likely to grow as the PPQ becomes more popular.

There are numerous holsters of all types for the PPQ that you can find from many manufacturers, include reputable ones such as Galco.

As far as customization of the PPQ is concerned, you can have the trigger swapped out for a better one, though why would you want to? You can replace the plastic guide rod that comes standard on the gun with a metal or stainless steel one (which I have done, as it’s heavier and helps to lower recoil just a tad). You can also replace the sights with a variety of higher quality options. I would suggest replacing the plastic sights on the PPQ with metal ones.

CONCLUSION

Priced in the $500 to $600 range, the PPQ represents a great value for the everyman. You’re getting a lot of gun for the money: excellent ergonomics, superb reliability and durability, decent accuracy, and a dream of a trigger. There are only a couple of minor complaints that I have about the PPQ, such as the sights being plastic, but this can be remedied easily.

I would highly recommend the PPQ to anyone looking for a 9mm pistol but who wants something other than a Glock. The PPQ is small and light enough for concealed carry or everyday carry purposes if necessary. It’s also large enough to use as a fighting weapon or sidearm.

Regardless of whether you use the PPQ for home defense, concealed carry, or just for fun target shooting, you simply can’t go wrong with it. Right now, the PPQ is the pinnacle of what Walther has achieved, and it will be very difficult for them to supplant it.

How to pack a bug out bag

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via BugOutBagExperts.com

If you want to optimize your bug out bag to save space, make it lighter or simply to fit more gear, know there is a lot you an do. From figuring out the right backpack and containers to knowing cool tips to pack them all together, you should definitely spend some time on this.

One way you can do it is modularize your bag, meaning grouping items together based on the tasks they perform. You can have:

  • a fire starting kit
  • a first aid kit
  • an electronics module
  • …and so on

Read more on the BOB experts

Pizzagate Fake News or Real Cover-Up?

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by Isabella

Prior the alleged shooting at Comet Pizza in Washington DC on dec 5th 2016, the mainstream media was doing everything it could to avoid any mention of the so-called “fake news” scandal that Wikileaks released a few weeks before called Pizzagate.  In fact, if you went on to CNN’s website and performed a search for the term “Pizzagate,” you would only come up with some obscure and asinine articles about how the mayor of New York once ate pizza with a fork.

However, if you were to search social media or YouTube, especially prior to Facebook and Reddit censoring the results, you would find that there is a disturbing conspiracy theory about a child sex ring involving high-level members of the Democratic party centering around Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager, former Chief of Staff to Bill Clinton, and councelor to Barak Obama, Mr. John Podesta, President Obama himself, and a pizza parlor in Washington DC called Comet Ping Pong Pizza.  I say “disturbing” not only because it involves child sex slaves, but also because there is an overwhelming about of circumstantial evidence to support this conspiracy theory.

However naturally, this is not according to the mainstream media.

So, let’s take a look at this in reverse.  What happened on Sunday the 4th of December at Comet Pizza in DC, and what is the media saying about it?

Allegedly, and I say “allegedly” not only cause the accused gunman hasn’t been convicted yet, but because the mainstream media loves to use the word “allegedly” whenever they deny the validity of a claim, on Sunday the 4th, Edgar Maddison Welch, a man from North Carolina, went into Comet Pizza and pointed a rifle at an employee.  He (allegedly) said that he was there to conduct an investigation.  He (allegedly) fired multiple shots into the ground, no one was hurt.  Twenty eight-year-old Welch surrendered to law enforcement and was charged with assault with a deadly weapon.

Why did Welch do this, according to the mainstream narrative?  Because of “right-wing” blogs spreading “groundless theories” about a child sex trade ring that involved, among others, the restaurant owner of Comet Ping Pong Pizza, James Alefantis.

No word on the results of Welch’s investigation.  Just that the right-wing conspiracy theory that caused all of this is totally without merit and spread by white supremacists.

So, is it this supposedly completely groundless right-wing conspiracy theory that caused Welch to storm the pizza parlor with a semi-automatic weapon?  Where did it all come from in the first place?

Depending on who you get your information from, the theory can get rather complicated. It is after all, whether you believe it to have any merit or not, definitely still just a theory.

The basic theory is this: that DC power players like Alefantis, the Podesta brothers, and even president Obama are involved, to various degrees, in the kidnapping, trafficking, molestation, rape, and possible killing of children.  There are more complexities (including some that are so unbelievable I’m only going to briefly touch on them later), but that’s the basic accusation.

So, where did it come from?

Most of it comes from the cryptic and creepy content of John Podesta’s emails that were obtained, then released by Wikileaks.org.  As I mentioned, Podesta is the former chairman of the 2016 Hillary Clinton presidential campaign. He previously served as chief of staff to President Bill Clinton (an accused rapist himself) and counselor to President Barack Obama.  After tens of thousands of his emails were made public, people on the web began pouring over them looking for evidence of political corruption.  They found that of course, but what they also found was what seemed to be a code involving food.  Before we look at the emails themselves, the code is theorized to go something like this…

Pizza = Girl

Hotdog = Boy

Cheese = Little girl

Pasta = Little boy

Map = semen

Dominos = BDSM sex

There is more, but that is enough to get us started.  Now let’s take a look at a just a few of the suspicious emails. 

On Thursday, December 24, 2015, Sandler, Herbert <hms@sandlerfoundation.org> wrote:

Mary and John

I think you should give notice when changing strategies which have been long in place. I immediately realized something was different by the shape of the box and I contemplated who would be sending me something in the square shaped box. Lo and behold, instead of pasta and wonderful sauces, it was a lovely, tempting assortment of cheeses, Yummy. I am awaiting the return of my children and grandchildren from their holiday travels so that we can demolish them. Thank you so much. I hope you and your gang are well. I miss you both Best wishes fro a merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

Herb

Ps. Do you think I’ll do better playing dominos on cheese than on pasta?

It doesn’t make much sense that someone would want “notice” about the shape of the box food was sent to them in.  If we look at this email with the alleged code in mind, if you can stomach it, we notice that the email takes on a whole new meaning, especially the post script section which doesn’t make any sense the way it is written.

So that’s Podesta, now on to Obama himself.

https://wikileaks.org/gifiles/docs/12/1223066_re-get-ready-for-chicago-hot-dog-friday-.html

From: Fred Burton [mailto:burton@stratfor.com]

Sent: Thursday, May 14, 2009 2:39 PM

To: ‘Don Kuykendall’

Cc: ‘Aaric Eisenstein’; ‘Darryl O’Connor’; ‘Copeland Susan’

Subject: RE: Get ready for “Chicago Hot Dog Friday”

I think Obama spent about $65,000 of the tax-payers money flying in

pizza/dogs from Chicago for a private party at the White House not long

ago, assume we are using the same channels?

$65,000 for pizza and hotdogs?  Forget the misuse of tax dollars for a second and just think about how many hotdogs and pizzas that would be, why on earth they would come from Chicago, and why wouldn’t they eat something a little more refined if you are going to throw that kind of cash around?  And I don’t know about you, but when I order pizza with my friends I don’t ask them if they want to “use the same channels”, that’s not really pizza ordering language that I’m familiar with.  Once again, the meaning of the email takes on more significance when read with the suspected code.

There are more of these emails, some of which have reasonable explanations, others are equally creepy  when looked at through the lens of the alleged code, and make no sense what so ever the way they are written.  But is that it?  Those emails are certainly weird, but not exactly reason to storm a pizza place with a deadly weapon, right?  So, what else are these right-wing, white supremacists spreading around the internet in regards to these fine upstanding Democrats?

Well, it is more circumstantial evidence, but the potential implications definitely don’t get any less creepy.

I’m not exactly sure who first noticed this, but John Podesta and his brother Tony Podesta (an American lobbyist best known for founding the Podesta Group and being totally creepy) look just like the police sketches of the suspects in the disappearance of Madeleine McCain.  Remember, back in May of 2007 a little girl from the UK went missing while on holiday with her family in Portugal?  It was all over the news in the States.

Her parents were suspects for a short period of time, then cleared, and the police released two sketches of the suspects based on descriptions given by witnesses.

But what else do we know about either of these two that might give cause for suspicion?  To being with, Tony Podesta has a sick taste in “art,” that includes decapitated statues posed in positions that bare an eerie similarity to pictures that Jeffery Dommer (a pedophile cannibal serial killer) took of the mutilated corpses of some of his victims, as well as paintings of dead looking children laying in shallow water, and for reasons unknown, he has stuffed animals and toys throughout his creepy home despite his not having any children.

Could you imagine if Trump had something like this in the lobby of the Trump Tower, what would the leftist media say about it? How on earth could you possibly justify having any of these in your home?  This is absolutely sick.

Evidence like this, as circumstantial as it is, is disgusting and maddening.  To think of someone victimizing an innocent child evokes a response of either sickness or rage in any morally healthy person.  Unfortunately, it also leads to overenthusiastic acceptance of other, not so verifiable evidence that supports the theory, a sort of chain reaction in the mind.  When you are able to connect the dots between what seem to be coded emails, police sketches, and pedophilia “art”, the understandable anger it arouses in you makes it a little too easy to start accepting as fact other claims and accusations made against these people.

So unwittingly, many people are spreading what is quite possibly “fake news” about Pizzagate all over the internet.  This isn’t making it any easier to draw critical attention to the issue or have an intelligent conversation about it.  Most of the dubious information comes from what is allegedly James Alefantis’ formerly public Instagram account, which has now gone private.

It includes pictures of children taped to a table, pictures of children with sexually suggestive or even sexually overt hashtags, and disturbing “art” that graphically depicts what is unquestionably child rape.  The problem is, there is absolutely no way of verifying whether any of these images were actually from Alefantis’ Instagram.  Casting further doubt on this information is that many who spread the images of the pedophile “art” attribute it to being in Comet Ping Pong, for which there is no evidence.

The result of such dubious information being associated with Pizzagate is that it clouds that waters, so that when you research “Pizzagate pedophile art”, along with the creepy art done by people who have performed at Comet Ping Pong and the horrors that hang on the wall of the Podesta home, you will find images of paintings done by Ria Pratt.

But as far as I can tell, there is no connection that can be reasonably drawn between Pratt (Pratt is not the artist’s real name, she suffers from Disassociate Identity Disorder from childhood trauma, the paintings depict what she was subjected to) and Pizzagate.  All of this gives fuel to the “fake news” accusations leveled towards those that spread information about pizza gate to raise awareness about the legitimate crimes that may have been committed.

So, does the mainstream media address this in the way I just did, drawing a distinction between the evidence that can be found in the verifiable Podesta emails versus the alleged former Instagram images?  Not as far as I can tell.  All I have seen is a general “nothing to see here folks” or even the “you’re not a retard or racist, are you?  Then you must agree that Pizzagate is fake news”.

The media is behaving as though it is completely unreasonable to even suggest that people like the Podesta brothers and Obama, along with the rest of those incriminated in the emails, could ever do such a thing.  And for many people out there, that doesn’t raise an alarm.  But for those that don’t know, this isn’t the first time accusations like this have come out against people in high places.

In June of 1989, the Washington Times reported that aides in the Carter, Raegan, and Bush administration were under investigation for using a “call boy” service.  Some of the “boys” were given mid-night tours of the White House.  Nothing serious resulted from the investigation.

The “Boy’s Town incident” or the “Franklin child sex ring allegations” took place between 1988 and 1991.  Prominent politicians and celebrities were named as those that paid for the service of forced underage prostitutes.  There were no convictions, unless you count the perjury convictions for those that brought the accusations.

The McMartin preschool trial was the longest and most costly trial in American history.  It centered around a family run day care facility in California were children alleged that they were forced into prostitution for celebrities and politicians.  The incident went on from 1983 to 1990 and ended in no convictions.  This despite three-time regional FBI director Ted Gunderson stating that he found the tunnels under the day care, tunnels that the children said they were taken out through, this was independently confirmed by professional geologists and archeologists. Once again, no convictions.

Other than the blanket label of “fake” applied to all these incidents, the high profile of the alleged perpetrators, and the lack of convictions, can you guess what commonality they all share?  Accusations of Satan worship.  That’s right, if it wasn’t weird enough already, these people have all been accused not only of raping children, but sacrificing them to the devil.

So while it would not be unreasonable to say that belief in the child sex trafficking accusations brought up by the Franklin child sex ring allegations, the McMartin preschool allegations, and now Pizzagate, would qualify as a conspiracy theory, since it is a theory that multiple people conspired to victimize these children and to cover the evidence there of, it would be just as true to say that it is a conspiracy theory to suggest that multiple people who have no relation to each other, often then alleged victims including preschool aged children but also including former federal agents and professionals, have concocted fallacious stories about child sex rings and Satanic sacrifice involving politicians.   But which one of those seems more far-fetched?

Sure, small children do make some things up sometimes, but do most three-year-olds come home from school with stories of scoring a questionable number of goals during soccer, or do they come home with stories of being taken out in tunnels and flown to an airstrip in the mountains to be prostituted to the politicians they should only know through the TV while being forced to take part in Satanic rituals involving child sacrifice? That does not sound like your run-of-the-mill exaggerated child’s story.

Sometimes we don’t have all the facts, sometimes theories and circumstantial evidence is all we have.  But we have to choose the most reasonable of those theories to belief if we want to consider ourselves rational people.  So, when you look at the evidence of pizza gate, bring along your skepticism, for the validity of the evidence, and for those that dismiss it, and come to your own conclusions based on reason and all the facts that you do have.

The Ultimate Everyday Carry List of Items for Preppers, Survivalist and Patriots

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article via everydaycarryexperts.com, photo John Hritz via on Flickr

A good survival EDC has to do two things well:

  1. To assist you in everyday tasks
  2. To keep you alive in case of an emergency.

The problem with EDCs is that you can only carry so much on your person. Unless you have a job that’s keeping you glued to your car, you’re stuck keeping your everyday carry items in places such as your wallet, your laptop bag, your purse and, of course, your pockets.

Whether you live in an urban, suburban or rural area, you’ll find the exhaustive list below enough to fit most if not all of your needs… so let’s take it one at a time, shall we?

Read more on Everyday Carry Experts

Building Your Own Log Cabin

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by Ryan

Building a log cabin is not complicated, but it is difficult. The work is back-breaking, and the process requires incredible tenacity. If you are doing the work by yourself, the build will take months and possibly years depending on how much free time you have to work on the project. That being said, it is incredibly rewarding to know you took natural materials and made a home from them.

There are dozens of ways to build a log cabin. You can purchase kits, have lumber delivered, and even build a multi-room, multi-level luxury fortress if you like. However, this is not what I think of when I envision building a log cabin. In this article I will cover a simple process to build a small, one room cabin with almost entirely found materials. All you should have to purchase are metal spikes, roofing, windows, and doors. The rest we can find in the woods.

Selecting a Location

There are several factors that need to go into your decision for a cabin location. These variables can be as trivial as your view out the window and as vital as the possibility of your cabin collapsing. Here are some things to consider before you start building:

  • Level ground – It is very possible to build a cabin on a hillside, but it is much more difficult and risky. There would be lots of digging involved, and retaining walls may be needed to keep the soil in place. For our purposes, level ground is best.
  • Accessibility – If you plan to drive to and from your cabin, the path to your build site is very important. Be wary of hills that could ice over in the winter or low areas that could flood in the spring. You will also need to get roofing materials, doors, and windows to your build site.
  • Water Source – If you plan to spend any significant amount of time in the cabin, you will want a water source close by. Never build so close to water that flooding or moist soil could be an issue. Springs are best, but a creek or river will do. Water can attract mosquitoes and predators, so I would suggest being at least 100 yards from the source.
  • Soil Quality – No matter how you build your cabin, it will be heavy and will have a tendency to settle over time. You are best to build on a very solid foundation. If you build on flat rocky ground you are okay to start construction. If you build on softer soil, you should bury some posts below the frost line to support the foundation. You should never build on sandy or loose soil.
  • Environmental Concerns – Before you start to build, think about the direction from which the wind will blow. This could affect how drafty your cabin gets. Think about having trees on the south and west side of your cabin but not on the north and east side. This will shade your cabin in the summer, but allow the sun to warm your cabin in the winter. Also be cautious of dying trees that may fall on your structure. If you choose to build near dead trees, drop them before you build. You may also want to consider the view from your location.
  • Proximity to Logs – You may not want to have to transport your logs over a great distance to get to your work site. If you can build near the logs, it makes the process that much easier.

Design

Before you can determine what supplies you need to gather, you first have to design your cabin. This does not have to be a complicated process. Here are the points you need to decide before you start cutting logs:

  • Decide how large you want your cabin to be. Remember that the larger it is, the harder it is to keep warm in the winter. For this plan we are assuming it will just be one room. Also, the larger your cabin is the more money you will spend on roofing. Keep all this in mind.
  • What kind of corner notch will you use for your logs? Be sure you have the skill and tools needed for that option.
  • What kind of roofing will you use? You really have three options. You can buy sheets of metal roofing, buy shingles, or cut wood for a shake roof. Building a shake roof by yourself is very time consuming, so this would be my last choice. I like the idea of a metal roof as you can lift large sheets in place and move faster. You may also want to buy sheets of insulation to go under the roofing.
  • Where will your windows and doors be and what size. You will need to order your windows and doors unless you plan to make your own.
  • Will you trim your logs by hand or use a chainsaw mill? I highly suggest either free-handing your cuts with a chainsaw or getting a mill. Using an axe would take much, much longer. Also, if you want planks for floorboards or roof decking you will need a mill.

Building Supplies

There are three kinds of supplies that you will need for this project. You need tools to get the job done, plenty of trees to cut for your logs, and then an order to purchase items such as your windows, doors, roofing, and spikes. Chances are you will have several months before you need many of these supplies, so shop around and find the best deal possible. If you can haul them to the site yourself, that will cut costs as well.

As for tools, you should not need much. A large chainsaw with a mill, a sledge hammer, and a draw knife to peel the logs should be about all that you need. Of course you will need a hammer and nails when you get to the roofing, windows, doors, and flooring.

For your logs, there are logistical aspects you have to consider. Think about these things when selecting target lumber:

  • Type of Tree – Not all trees are good for building a cabin. It has to be resistant to rot, resistant to insects, lightweight, straight, and strong. Most evergreens fit the bill including pine, spruce, juniper, and cypress. You also see some people use oak or aspen for log homes, but they are not nearly as common.
  • Size of Logs – If you are building this by yourself, you have to decide how much weight you can carry, drag, load, and set by yourself. This may also help determine the size of your cabin since you do not want gaps or joints in the wall where two logs meet. Remember that the logs will be slightly smaller and lighter once the bark is stripped off.
  • Proximity to Site – When you find trees ideal for your cabin, you will have to transport them to your site. You can bundle them and drag them by truck or horse. However, if you are within a few hundred yards you can probably save time by carrying them.
  • Terrain for Transport – If your logs are on a hillside, it could make for a very difficult trip. You are better to pick trees that are on flat ground so they can be moved easily.
  • How to Peel – You need to have a site set up for peeling logs. This will likely be a set of saw horses to raise the log so you are peeling at waist height. It will give you more leverage and put less strain on your back.

Assembling the Cabin

Again, the process for assembling the cabin is simple, but it is not easy. Once you have decided on a foundation, it is time to start dropping, peeling, and stacking logs. This is the back-breaking work that can take several months. Please be patient and do not hurt yourself. The steps are fairly simple:

  • Drop your first set of logs, get them to the peeling site, and remove all the bark
  • Trim the logs to give you a slightly flat side on the top and bottom
  • Notch the ends to match up with the notch type you selected for your cabin
  • Lay the logs and do any trimming needed to get them to fit squarely
  • Complete logs on all four sides and then lay the next layer
  • Use steel spikes to attach the second layer to the first layer
  • Continue this process to roof level. You will need to use leverage to get your logs high enough. Put one end on the structure and then lift and slide the other to get to a pivot point. Then you can move it wherever you need to.
  • Fill any cracks in the logs with dry moss for insulation, and mill logs to create rafters for the roof
  • Lay roofing with a layer of moss underneath as insulation and attach tightly
  • Use the chainsaw to cut doors and windows
  • Install doors and windows
  • If desired, lay slabs of wood for flooring and nail in place.

Additional Steps

There are some additional steps you can take to make sure your cabin works out well.

  • Stuff every crack and space with dry moss. The more you cut down on drafts, the warmer your cabin will be.
  • You can seal the outside of the cabin to further prevent decay. It can add some cost, but can also add several years to the life of your cabin.
  • Use tar paper under your roofing. This can further protect your roof from leaking.
  • Make the pitch of your roof steeper. This will shed snow and rain much better than a shallow roof.
  • Add a chimney. You can funnel the heat and smoke through a pipe making your cabin warmer and more smoke free.

What you can count on is that any cabin you build with your own two hands will be more rewarding than any other home you have lived within. However, I cannot express enough how much more labor intensive this project will be versus your expectations. It will be worth the effort once the project is finished. Take the time build it properly, and your finished product will bring you satisfaction for decades.

The Ways that ISIS is Winning the War on Social Media

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by Timothy

Unless you live under a rock, you have heard of ISIS. Most of us have seen their atrocities on the internet or on the news, no matter how much we try not to. Who are these people that we were so blissfully ignorant of only a few years ago, how did their name become so prominent in our vocabulary and how are they able to reach so many people around the world?

By now you’ve probably heard both titles for what is undoubtedly the most notorious terrorist group in recent history but you  may not know why there are two names for them or why they are different. The primary difference, believe it or not, is the geographical reach implied. “ISIS” stands for The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria while “ISIL” stands for The Islamic State of Iraq and Levant. Levant refers to the area from Southern Turkey through Syria to Egypt and includes Israel. As you can see, “ISIL” is much more ambitious and gives them far more prestige than they deserve.

ISIS began as a small insurgent group in Iraq around 2006 but finding it difficult to gain any progress as their own entity, they moved into Syria when the Syrian Civil War broke out. Their hope was to make gains there that they could not make in Iraq but Syria proved to be difficult as well. Their problem was funding and arming their efforts which the United States would resolve for them in a few years.

It wasn’t until 2014 that they were able to obtain many of the weapons that the Obama Administration had sent to the Free Syrian Army and they were able to take their newly fitted army back into Iraq to resume their claim for fame. Though unacknowledged by most of our government, many of the so-called Free Syrian Army members were actually ISIS members. It is believed by some that the administration was aware of this and continued to arm them anyway.

ISIS first became known for their grainy, poorly produced execution videos that began showing up on the internet. Primarily showing beheadings, their cell phone videos took the news cycles by storm and they immediately saw the value of social media in trying to boost their prominence. It didn’t hurt that they were simultaneously making military gains in Iraq at the same time, with their US supplied weapons.

Faster than cities in Iraq could fall to their fighters, social media became a victim as well. Using Twitter, Facebook, Skype, Silent Circle, What’s App and messaging apps like Telegram and Surespot, ISIS was suddenly able to spread its messages of propaganda all over the world and reach millions directly. They could encourage disenfranchised westerners to either travel to Syria and join their army or stay at home and attack whatever was around them. It was cheap, easy and largely untraceable.

Many of the videos and much of the propaganda that was released online were not beheading videos rather public works projects, economic development tasks and other rebuilding efforts that were supposed to show ISIS’ commitment to the towns and villages that they were invading. They were, according to their countless documentaries and posts, the “Good Guys”.

ISIS also began releasing a magazine to the west that was thoughtfully translated into English. The name of it is Dabiq and it can be found all over the internet. Not only the most current issue but also as many back issues as you would like to read. This magazine is high gloss, well developed and carefully edited. If you could forget what you were reading for a moment, you might think you picked up a copy of Better Homes and Gardens. Of course, when you get to the bomb-making instructions you will likely be jolted back to your senses.

These magazines, and others like it, are available on multiple websites who claim to be performing a service to the world by documenting them and keeping them forever. I suppose they do not feel responsible for the actions of whoever downloads them.

It has been reported that ISIS has, in some cases, even highjacked hashtags of unrelated subjects in order to direct unwary surfers to vivid and bloody photos as they did in 2014 when they commandeered “#worldcup” (which displayed a severed head).

ISIS videos became more sophisticated and they began filming with HD cameras, blue-screens, and even began producing little graphical introductions with each film. This same time last year, it was estimated that through social media, ISIS was releasing an average of 38 new items per day.

These efforts began paying off in dividends and according to CNN, as of this past spring, 3,400 westerners have traveled to join ISIS, with as many as 250 being from the United States. As stated, those that do not travel, or cannot, are encouraged in social media to attack whatever they can at home. This, too, proved successful.

While it is nearly impossible to list every attack that is attributed to ISIS in the West, some of the notable attacks in the US are:

  • April 15, 2013; Two brothers created bombs out of pressure cookers and placed them at the Boston Marathon. 3 dead.
  • October 23, 2014; An attacker armed with a hatchet attacked 4 NYPD Officers in a subway, injuring 2.
  • May 3,2015; Two gunmen attacked the Curtis Colwell Center during a “Draw Muhammad” cartoon exhibit in Garland, Texas. 2 dead.
  • December 2, 2015; A married couple in California shot their coworkers who were throwing them a baby shower. 14 dead.
  • June 12, 2016; A shooter entered a nightclub in Orlando, Florida and kills 49.

There can be little doubt that many of these attacks as well as others across the West would not have occurred had it not been for the shrewd exploitation of social media by ISIS. So the ultimate question is “Are we winning this war or losing it?” I will not pretend to know the answer to this.

If you believe what you see on television, we are winning battles in Iraq and ISIS is losing geographical territory there on a weekly basis. The problem with this is that ISIS is far more entrenched in countries other than Iraq. While their “core” countries (meaning they occupy territory) are Iraq and Syria, they are present in many more countries, making their reach astounding. They are thought to have a significant presence in Algeria, Nigeria, Libya, the Sinai Peninsula, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Afghanistan, Pakistan and the Caucasus in southern Russia as well.

This likely means that even after the horrors presently being committed in Iraq and Syria have abated, the attacks and propaganda which rely heavily on social media will continue. As long as it continues to be effective we have to assume that ISIS will continue to see its use as a valuable tool.

So far, the US government’s efforts at counteracting the presence of Radical Islam on the internet have not been very effective. They have attempted to create Twitter accounts, run by the State Department, that encouraged would-be recruits to turn away from radical tweets and propaganda. This often resulted in philosophical arguments between the State Department and pro-Jihadis which turned out to be largely unproductive.

Their more recent efforts, according to the Wall Street Journal, are to get Islamic leaders involved in trying to undermine the draw of ISIS and other groups on young, disenchanted westerners. What makes these countermeasures so difficult is that they should be targeted to a narrow, specific demographic and it is difficult to determine what that is.

Additionally, the government has financed competitions to encourage college students to come up with ideas on how to combat this social onslaught by radical groups. While there are some encouraging signs such as fewer tweets being registered by the Islamic State, this could be because of a move to heavily encrypted messaging and not necessarily a reduction in recruitment.

The reality is that it is difficult to prevent ‘copy-cats’ or anyone else who views an extreme position or action as an answer to their own discontented lives. Some of the attacks committed under the flag of ISIS can be contributed to these type of people as well as the mentally ill. In truth, there may never be a way to counter the attractiveness of such organizations for these people.

CNN interviewed a former terrorist recruiter who told them that one of the problems with the government’s attempts to counter ISIS’ social media blitz is that the government’s videos simply do not appeal to a gaming generation the way radical videos do. Up until this point, the government’s efforts have been mostly seen in the form of something akin to slide shows. His recommendation is that the US use social media, non-stop just as ISIS does.

It seems odd to think that some wanna-be terrorist, who may be undecided about killing the innocent people around him, might be swayed by whichever side has the most ‘game-like’ videos. I would hate to think that this is our new reality but some believe that it is.

One thing is clear. Something must be done. As ISIS continues to slip terrorists into the West under the guise of being ‘refugees’, as they continue to use chemical weapons in Syria and their hateful rhetoric is still taught by many Islamic leaders around the world, it is imperative that we contain the fight to those outside of our own populations.

The Brookings Institute which is a prominent ‘think tank’ on social issues thinks that the answer might be the ability to intervene with a potential recruit before he or she reaches the final stages of radicalization. This would require friends, family, and law enforcement to be able to recognize the signs of indoctrination and does not really address the problem of the initial attraction of social media content. Until this is addressed it is likely that the recruitment will continue.

Some believe that as ISIS loses ground in Iraq and Syria, the allure of recruitment will be reduced as a byproduct of that. After all, they argue, who wants to be associated with a losing team? There may be some truth to this but do we really want to wait to find out?

Top 5 Walther Pistols to Own

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Walther is a gun company that always seems to introduce a new innovative feature with each gun they make. They’ve gone from a simple target rifle manufacturer in the 1880s to now being one of the most famous firearms manufacturers in the entire world. Walther produces an assortment of high-quality handguns for law enforcement, military, and civilians alike.

The special thing about Walther is how each of their handguns is unique from other guns in their respective classes. Some of their guns have been enormously successful, to the point of becoming iconic, and others not so much. But there’s no denying that Walther is a gun company to be reckoned with when it comes to innovation and reliability.

Regardless of whether you want to begin collecting Walthers or are just looking for a single Walther handgun to own, take heart in knowing that when you buy a Walther, you’re buying a gun that’s going to last you for life.

Here are the top five Walther pistols to own, presented in the order that they were made:

WALTHER PPK OR PPK/S

The PPK is probably the gun you think of first when you hear the name ‘Walther.’  After all, the Walther PPK in .32 ACP is well known for being the sidearm of choice for James Bond 007. Not only is the PPK easily the most iconic Walther handgun, but it’s also one of the most iconic handguns period.

There are more reasons to own a PPK (or a PPK/S) than just to say that you own the James Bond gun. First and foremost, the PPK was one of the most innovative pistols of its time. It has been so successful that numerous other famous pistols, such as the Russian Makarov, have since copied it. Walther originally released the PP in 1929. It became the first successful blowback double action single action pistol ever released. A year later, Walther cut down the grip and barrel to make the most concealable PPK.

The PPK quickly found favor as a concealment and a backup weapon with law enforcement and people across the globe. It remained a favorite for many decades. The PPK built a reputation for durability, reliability, accuracy, and slimness. By all accounts, it was the gun that brought Walther worldwide attention.

Because of the Gun Control Act of 1968, the PPK was deemed too small to be imported into the United States. Walther remedied this situation by taking the slide and barrel of the PPK and slapping it on the frame of the PP to create the PPK/S. The PPK/S holds one more round than the PPK in .32 (8 vs. 7-round) and .380 (7 vs. 6-round).

Today both the PPK and the PPK/S are produced by Walther at their factory in Fort Smith, Arkansas. Smith & Wesson used to manufacture the PPK and the PPK/S under Walther licensing from 2002 to 2015, but they have a mixed reputation at best in comparison to the genuine Walther’s.

While the PPK has been largely eclipsed by more modern pistols in its class that are lighter in weight, it truly is a timeless and proven design.  It’s an accurate and well-balanced firearm that’s equally at home in your gun safe as it is in your waistband.

WALTHER P38

Another highly successful design from Walther is the P38. Like the PPK, its basic lock-breech design is seen in many other famous pistols, including the Beretta 92. The magazine holds eight rounds of 9mm and can be released by the European style heel mag release.

The P38 was designed chiefly as a military sidearm for the German Army in the late 1930s. Not only did it serve with distinction in World War II, but it also continued to be used by German police and military units in the decades afterward. It was only completely phased out in 2004 which says a lot about the overall quality of the design.

While the P38 was not the first DA/SA pistol ever produced, it was the first successful such pistol. Like the Beretta 92, the safety is located on the slide and acts as a decocker when depressed. A loaded chamber indicator slightly protrudes out of the rear of the slide when the weapon is chambered. Also, the P38 also uses the same open slide design that the Beretta 92 has become famous for.

Today, P38’s can be found floating on the used market in the $500 to $700 range. Surplus parts and magazines are relatively plentiful. For these reasons, the P38 would even be an appropriate choice as an SHTF sidearm.

Note: the aluminum-framed version of the P38 is the P1. Other than this, the two guns are identical and spare parts are interchangeable.

WALTHER P5

The Walther P5 is affectionately known by Walther aficionados as the ‘forgotten Walther.’  While successful with police units in Europe, it gained significantly less attention in the United States. However, there are still some who consider the P5 to be the finest Walther ever made, and there are good reasons why.

The P5 is essentially an updated version of the P38. The story goes that in the 1970s, German police were looking for new sidearms to replace the World War II-era ones that they had been using. Many companies submitted designs, and Walther’s entry was the P5. It was quickly accepted by multiple police agencies in Germany, Finland, and the Netherlands (the latter of whom issued it until 2013).

Like the P38, the P5 utilizes a locked breach design with a heel magazine release (though it does not have the open slide design of the P38). It fires the 9mm Luger round from 8-round magazines, but it will accept P38 magazines if the magazine heel is swapped out for the P38 heel.

One of the most notable features of the P5 is how the spent shell casings eject to the left side of the frame rather than the right. This is obviously a major plus for left-handed shooters. The reason for this design in the P5 was because if a jam were to occur, the shooter would be able to see it instantly without rotating the gun to view the ejection on the other side.

All in all, the P5 is a fantastically well-made firearm. Admittedly it’s better suited these days as a collector’s item rather than as a duty or a concealed carry firearm. This has nothing to do with the quality of the weapon, but rather with the fact that the P5 is no longer produced. This means spare parts and accessories are difficult and expensive to find.

WALTHER P99

The P99 was Walther’s first polymer framed striker fired handgun, riding on the heels of the Glock tidal wave. The P99 is still far from being a Glock copy.  Whereas the Glock and most other striker fired handguns have one consistent trigger pull, the P99 utilizes what Walther calls the Anti-Stress (AS) firing system that is modeled more after a DA/SA handgun.

It works like a double action pistol. The first trigger pull is long and heavy. After the gun cycles, all subsequent shots are much shorter and in a single action. A decocker is present on the slide that returns the pistol to the double action pull mode when depressed for safe carrying. However, the unique feature about the P99 is how it can be cocked. When the gun is in double action mode, and the slide is pulled back slightly, the ‘AS’ mode is activated. In this position, the trigger is still in the position of the DA mode but has virtually no take-up, similar to if you were to manually cock a DA/SA hammer fired pistol.

The P99 fires from 15 shot magazines in 9mm or 12 shots in .40 S&W. It features an ambidextrous paddle magazine release on the side. While successful in Europe, like the P5, it garnered significantly less attention in the United States. Walther recognized this and decided to update the P99 with a single continuous trigger pull. The result was the PPQ.

Note: the P99 is also available as a Compact model with a shorter grip and barrel, with a 10+1 capacity for 9mm and 9+1 for .40 S&W.

WALTHER PPQ

As mentioned above, the PPQ is essentially the P99 only with the same trigger pull for each shot (called the ‘Quick Defense’ trigger by Walther), which is like the Glock. This trigger is widely regarded as being one of the smoothest and lightest of any production pistol on the marketplace.

Walther also produces the PPQ in two separate variations. The M1 model that features an ambidextrous paddle magazine release. The M2 model features a reversible push button release. All accessories between the M1 and M2 models are compatible except for the magazines.

Today, the PPQ is available on the American market in four separate calibers: .22 LR (12 rounds), 9mm Luger (15 or 17 rounds), .40 S&W (11 or 13 rounds), and .45 ACP (12 rounds). It’s also offered in two different barrel lengths: a 4-inch barrel for duty use, and a longer 5-inch barrel for competition and target use.

The PPQ has become the flagship model in Walther’s lineup. In addition to its smooth trigger, it has gained a reputation for improved ergonomics, accuracy, and reliability.

CONCLUSION

Walther produces top quality pistols designed to be used for life. Just as importantly, their designs are among the most innovative of any gun manufacturer in the world. While all their handguns are undoubtedly well made, the PPK, P38, P5, P99, and PPQ are the five that deserve the most recognition.

Freedom – How to Escape Handcuffs

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by Ryan

We have all seen it in the movies… the hero has been captured and picks his handcuffs to escape. I recall a time from my youth when I found myself in handcuffs and pulled a staple from a cork board to try and pick the lock. It did not work.

Needless to say this is a skill that takes some practice. Unlike the movies, you cannot just grab a hair pin and pop open your cuffs. The good news is that this is a challenge you can handle. Once you understand how the lock works, you should be able to consistently free yourself.

Also, if cuffed behind your back you should always be able to sit down on the ground and move your bindings to the front. This is the easiest way to break free.

Caution: Never practice picking handcuffs without having two keys within reach. Also, never tighten them down to the point that they cut off the circulation to your hands. You do not know how long it will take you to get your hands free.

Make Your Own Key

When you see people using a piece of wire or a paperclip to pick the lock, they are essentially creating a makeshift key. A paperclip is the perfect thickness to accomplish this as the metal needs to be thick enough to hold its shape.

Step 1) Straighten out your paperclip or thick wire

Step 2) Insert the end of the wire into the keyhole and bend it to the side.

Step 3) Insert it further and bend it back the opposite direction so you create a zigzag in your metal.

Step 4) Twist the metal just like you would with a key. Be patient. You may have to wiggle it a bit or twist in the other direction to get the cuffs to pop free.

Step 5) Remember to hold onto your key to free your other hand. You would not be the first person to make the mistake of discarding it too quickly.

Some handcuffs are double-lock models. This means that they have to be released in two different directions before the cuffs can be released. The only difference with this is that your key needs to be twisted in both direction before you will feel them click loose. It should still be fairly easy to escape from this type of model.

Make a Shim

A shim is simply a thin piece of flat metal that is used as a barrier between the teeth of the cuffs. A good shim must be flexible and should be no thicker than a credit card. The metal clip from an ink pen can work, but my favorite shim is made from cutting a square out of the side of an aluminum can..

Step 1) Insert your shim into the opening where the teeth slide into the rest of the cuff. You want your shim centered on the teeth with any excess metal wrapping around the sides.

Step 2) Wiggle and push the metal in as far as it will go without pushing so hard that you bend the metal. It is important that your shim stays flat.

Step 3) Simultaneously apply pressure to the shim and tighten the cuff by one tooth. You should be able to feel and hear it click in place. If you do this right, the mechanism will drop on the shim instead of the tooth.

Step 4) Push and wiggle on the shim being sure not to let it back out of the mechanism. The cuffs should come free.

Escaping From Alternative Handcuffs

Anymore many captives find themselves being bound by something almost as convenient and strong as handcuffs, but much less expensive. Zip ties and duct tape are two examples that are commonly used. The key to escaping either of these bindings is outward pressure.

Duct Tape

Step 1) Raise your hands as high as you can being careful not to let the edge of the duct tape roll. You do not want to wiggle your hands back and forth as it will turn the tape into more of a rope. This makes it stronger. The weak point is the exposed edge.

Step 2) Practice a downward motion striking yourself and ripping your hands apart. You will only get one shot at this so you have to get it right. If your hands are bound in the front, bring your hands down across your chest or belly. If they are bound behind your back, bring them down on your butt or move them to the front. When practicing, do not actually make contact.

Step 3) When ready, raise your hands and bring them down as fast as you can. Strike your body hard and rip outward when you make contact. If done correctly, this should rip the tape breaking your hands free.

Zip Ties

Step 1) Move the square plastic lock on the zip tie to be centered between your hands.

Step 2) Tighten the zip tie as tight as you can get it.

Step 3) Unlike duct tape, you do not have to worry about rolling the edges and making the binding stronger. However, thick zip ties may have to be weakened by rubbing them on a sharp surface. You can find the edge of a table or door to get the process started. Try to focus on the plastic lock holding the zip tie together.

Step 4) Just like with the duct tape, you will raise your hands as high as possible and bring them down swiftly striking your body. When you make contact you will rip outwards popping the lock on the zip tie.

Note: This works even if one zip tie is used for each hand or if a third is used in between. You can also use a shim to break the zip tie lock free, but it has to be narrow enough to fit inside the plastic square.

Saw Method

I always replace my boot laces with 550 paracord, and this is one of its best uses. If you are having trouble getting out of zip ties or duct tape, you can saw your way through. To do this you need to pull one lace out of your boot and tie a loop on each end. Put a loop over one foot, drape the cordage over the bindings, and then put the other loop over the other foot. Then just saw back and forth with your feet until the friction breaks through the bindings.

Want to Cheat?

If you want to be sure you can get out of your handcuffs, there are several products you can buy to help you. I like to have a lock pick kit with me as much as possible so I can get through any lock. It includes a shim and a handcuff key, so it has all my bases covered.

You can also buy some spy level gear to help you get free. There are pieces of jewelry like pendants and rings that have shims or handcuff keys built in. Most people would never think to look that closely at these items. There are also boot laces that you can buy that have a hidden handcuff key in the tip.

Want to Practice?

There are several ways that you can practice these techniques. The least expensive and easiest way to test your skills is to start with duct tape and zip ties. This is a lot of fun, and it’s easy to get the whole family involved.

When it comes time to move on to handcuffs, a normal set is fine. However, it may require several attempt with a helpful assistant to get you free. The easier way to learn is to get a see-through set of cuffs so you can see that movement in the mechanism. Handcuffs are quite simple and seeing the movement is very helpful during the learning process.

Once you master handcuffs, you may want to get a lock pick set along with a see-through padlock so you can further your skills. When SHTF, having the ability to get through almost any lock or door will be very helpful and could save your life.

I would be remiss if I did not give some advice about escaping from handcuffs. Getting out of your cuffs when in police custody is a good way to get shot. In addition COPS get you into the back seat of their car as quickly as possible, so getting the cuffs to the front is very difficult. I would only ever remove police cuffs if you feel that your life is in danger.

In hostage situations, this can be just as dangerous. Remember that trying to escape from a captor is the most dangerous move you can make. I would only suggest freeing yourself to escape if you know for sure that you can break free or if you know for sure that your captor is going to kill you. If there is any question, wait it out to see if your situation changes. If nothing else, this is a fun party trick to show your friends.

An Open Letter to College Protesters (from a middle-aged, middle-class, working guy)

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by Timothy

I would like to speak to all of the anti-Trump protesters that I see daily on my television screen after I return home from work each day. It appears to me that most of you are college students who range from 18-22 years of age, although I am aware that there are older, more ‘professional’ protesters among you as well. These are most likely the organizers and the demonstrators-for-hire who have found a way to make a living, floating from one city to the next in order to agitate the nation at a time when we should be trying to come together.

If you are one of the young, well-meaning, college aged kids reading this and you are able to make it all of the way through this letter without retreating to your ‘safe place’ where contradicting views are not allowed to penetrate to you and thus upset the delicate balance of your own belief system, perhaps you will see the world a little differently. If you never make it past this paragraph before you need to seek anger therapy, I would like to thank you for trying.

To begin with, I feel an obligation to tell you that you have been grievously cheated. I don’t mean cheated in the election. I mean slighted by your college professors but also by your parents. Do not be too hard on them, though, I’m certain that they love you and want the best possible world for you, they simply became swept up in the politically-correct world version of child rearing and, as we (parents) can see, it does not work.

You see, way back in the 1990’s when that old guy (the one married to Hillary Clinton) was President, a movement began. It seemed funny at first, even cute sometimes. It began with people, who have never lived in the real world, telling the rest of us what words we could use when we spoke to someone or wrote something. For example, we were told to say “Happy Holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas” so that we didn’t offend the small minority of people in America who are not Christian. A woman could no longer be referred to as such and should, at all times, be called a “female”. Global Warming was the new religion of the 90’s, though this would later be recoined as “Climate Change” when the error of boxing one’s self into a corner became clear. There were hundreds more.

Your parents most likely conceived you as most of this was taking shape and we came to learn that it does not take parents to raise a child, rather an entire village. So all of these centuries, parents had it wrong. You only needed neighbors! Being busy with their careers and wanting only the best for you, they doled out “time-outs” for punishment and told you that it doesn’t matter if you win or lose, you will get a trophy anyway. As the father of three girls, I understand it. There were certainly times when I wished I could have caved into those methods of child rearing and given my bright-eyed daughters trophies for everything they did (whether it was done well or not). They were so cute!

Also, while you were running around in diapers and learning phrases like “save the planet” and “you can’t say that to me”, doctors began giving concerned parents explanations for their children’s questionable behavior. Things like ADD became rampant throughout the suburbs as did a plethora of other acronyms. This, we were told, is why your child wears their pants below their butt and has run-ins with the police. It was okay, though, because they also gave us cures for these mysterious ailments. Fortunately, there were plenty of pharmaceutical companies (you know, the 1% of the population that are filthy rich) that wanted to make the drugs to control your condition. Prior to this we were ignorantly referring to such children as “delinquents”. The dark ages, indeed.

Then the 1990’s came to a close and after we had elected a new President, we were attacked. We were attacked by Islamic, Fundamentalist, Terrorists who killed 3000 of our own citizens, right here in America. That’s 3000 brothers, sister, mothers, and fathers, who never came home. Probably more people than you have as “friends” on Facebook! For a brief flicker of time we all came together as one country. You see true fear will do that to people. They suddenly huddle together and wait for someone to figure out what to do next.

On September 10th, the day before the attacks, we were discussing incredibly important topics in the news such as Slave Reparations and Global Warming (oops, sorry. I mean Climate Change.). On September 11th, as your parents were rushing to your school to scoop you up and take you home, we learned that there might have been some other topics that we should have discussed.

President George Bush was our President then and despite all of the odds, he managed to prevent any further attacks on our country. Let me say that again. None, in the 8 years that he was President. No soldiers killing soldiers on an army base, nobody making bombs out of pressure cookers, None. This allowed us to go back to focusing on things that really matter such as the spotted owl and shutting down coal mines.

So it was in this environment that you grew up. Believing that there are no losers and everyone is a winner and you must always, always, have things your way. With beaming hearts and pride in their faces, you parents then sent you off to colleges that would not only reinforce these beliefs but put them into practice. No longer did you have to listen to any contradictory ideas. What used to be a veritable think-tank of ideas and counter-ideas (college campuses) began creating “safe zones” and un-inviting any speaker with whom you might disagree.

As the current President, Mr. Obama, came into office things began to change for us (the middle-class worker). Suddenly the economy was having problems recovering from a nasty housing collapse, factories were flooding across the Mexican border so that they could make more money, and we had all kinds of terrorists attacking us, all of the time. You see President Obama, well-intentioned like your parents, thought that if we were all nice enough to mean-spirited countries who hated us, they would like us if for no other reason than we were nice.

Part of this plan was to turn blind eyes on efforts to make nuclear weapons by these countries and to deplete our military to historic lows in order to show them that we mean them no harm. It’s sort of like you laying your pencil down in the middle of a test when you realize you might finish faster than your classmates and you don’t want to hurt their feelings. Just like your classmates, the rest of the world labeled us as schmucks and the attacks came in earnest.

Four years ago, we (again the people who are too tired from work to run around the streets at night and destroy things) nearly changed the direction that the country was going in when a guy named Mitt Romney ran against President Obama. The problem was, his policies were not really that much different from the man whom we wished replaced. So most of the country agreed to just keep the one we had. It was close, mind you, but probably for the best. We prevented the unpleasantness of the two families having to relocate to different cities. In all likelihood, that would have been the only significant change.

It seems that both parties were unable to provide an honest, not in it for me, non-career politician. So you’ll have to forgive our enthusiasm when a party finally found a real outsider. You, most likely a Bernie fan, should understand that. The difference is that Trump, unlike Bernie, knows that nothing is “free” and that somebody (a.k.a. working, middle-class Americans) must pay for every promise that Bernie, and people like him, make.

You see, in our eyes, Trump has so much money it’s ridiculous to think that he would sell us out in order to make a mere 150 million dollars on the speaking circuit. This is important because it makes us think that for once, somebody might actually make decisions based on what is good for us, not some fringe, special interest group. Trump trying to make another 150 million at the expense of his legacy would be like you giving up Twitter to mail letters. Pretty unlikely.

I’m sure that in your economics class you were told what a terrific recovery our nation is enjoying but honestly, 1% growth per quarter = no growth whatsoever. The biggest desire that we (your parents) have is that we are able to fend for ourselves in our old age and not be a burden on you or have to accept hand-outs from the government. You see, once you graduate and presumably go to work every day for the next 40 or 50 years, you will also want to be able to keep the house you live in and not pay eternally for “free” college for other people’s kids.

One day you will go to work and you will begin to pay taxes. As you struggle to pay not only for your own hopes and dreams in this lifetime but also those of your children, you will understand this letter much better. You see, we cannot possibly continue to afford your tuition, your prescription marijuana, and your X-Box games if we continue to lose jobs in this country.

While it may seem to you that the world as you know it has ended keep in mind this is only because you don’t recall that when you were 8 or 10 years old, and we had a different President. Yet the country is still here for you to burn and slander.  Our founding fathers were very intelligent men and they formed a government unlike any that existed then or that exists now. It is loaded with multiple systems of checks and balances that ensure it will survive any one Presidential Administration. The office of the President is bigger than any, one person and always will be.

You may not like Donald Trump and there are many people who voted for him that do not necessarily want to invite him over for dinner. What you are missing, though, as you stomp your feet and throw bricks through other people’s dreams, is that this election was a reminder to our politicians that they work for us, all of us, not themselves and the people who pay their graft. This election was about the direction of our country, not which candidate can call the other one the worst name or which one has the most “star-power”. We traveled down that road while you were speaking with your school counselor about your hurt feelings.

So take my advice. Go back to college, study hard, and focus on what you can do to make your own life better. Our country will still be here after you graduate, find a job, and start your own family. Hopefully when that time comes you will teach your own children that everyone really is responsible for their own actions and that the party of “inclusion” really isn’t.

Do You Have These Go Bag Essentials?

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Do You Have These Go Bag Essentials? If you’ve never heard about a “go bag” before, that’s because people are focused on surviving long-term disasters… which is why they talk so much about bug out bags. Go bags, on the other hand, are meant to assist you in small emergencies, 24 hours or less. But small doesn’t …

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We Want it all Back, Mr. President Elect

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We Want it all Back, Mr. President Elect

In Plain English

Written By Silence Dogood

Mr. President Elect… this is a note for you, and there had better NOT be, any waffling on your part now Sir, because “We the People,” definitely want it all back this time.

This is our time to take back this nation, a nation that was promised us by the forefathers.

We want our government back, our liberties, our inalienable rights, our freedoms… we want our constitution back, we want our Bill of Rights, we even want our holidays back, and you__ Mr. President… must hear our collective voices now, more than ever.

Realize this, if you fail us, it will mean the last glimmer of anything good and true in this country, for Liberty will die a quiet and trembling death heard round the world.

The rumblings you now hear is the determined fervor of a land ready to push back against the elitist infection that has infested our government, and our lives.

You, Mr. President are being watched by pensive souls that have taken a many abuses for you and we have allowed you to stand where you are now, as our leader.

We have done our part… now its time for you to do yours.

Realize this one thing… any compromise by you Mr. President, regarding our liberty and our justice for all… will prove the point to many, that the unfortunate ones were right to believe that there is no fair law left in this country.

And, that a separate set of rules, apply to the haves, and the laws of the never going to have anything ever again… is all that is given to the rest of us to live by.

We are not the affable sheep that the Elite believe we are, Mr. President. Their time on this earth has come nigh, and you are the chain to pull this train wreck back onto those twisted tracks of commerce.

We know it is not going to be easy for you. We know that it will take a lot out of you personally. The stress may even end you Mr. President, because all those Presidents before you merely drifted with the flow, you are headed up stream, and we commend you for your sacrifice, but you must persevere, and united us for the sake of the nation.

That, is the job you promised the people, and NO, you may not back down now.

If you do this one, final act for your country, this one last charge up the hill for Liberty, shouting out freedom to this dying land. You WILL BECOME the greatest President in the history of America.

Turn Coats are all around you Mr. President

Mr. President, whenever you wonder what to do over the next four years whenever you find yourself in times of trouble, and doubt and feel you can’t go on. Ask yourself these three questions.

Ask yourself, is what my administration is doing, Constitutional, are we infringing on my fellow man’s right to freedom, am I creating victims here, for just another plutocracy under a entitled special rule of law__ to take advantage after my term has ended?

Let these questions be your guide sir, let the Constitution be that weighty tome you study before sleep at night.

We did not elect you Mr. President because we just wanted change, like the last President promised us, or the compromise in freedoms like Hillary suggested we take instead.

We meant what we said Mr. President… when we called you to “DRAIN THE SWAMP.”

Many people will be whispering bad advice in your ear over the next few years especially now during your first term, and much like Character from Tolkien’s Trilogy, that greasy being “Grima Wormtongue from the Lord of the Rings.” Others like him will try and poison you against the citizens.

Grima’s constant counsel to King Théoden of Rohan destroyed him body and soul, until the Wizard did expose the fiend as the agent and spy of the evil ones, and was exiled forevermore.

You will also have this task of exiling those like Grima from our counsel. Accept you must know there are multitudes of these greasy reprobates in our midst.

How you must despair Mr. President, but fear not for we have plenty of room in our prison systems for these criminals so do your damnedest to rid them all Sir.

True you will have much ill counsel, and no doubt spilling poison in your administration’s ear, and at every chance they get, but stay vigilant for liberty’s sake…

As any great leader, you must trust no one, until all have proven their alliance to the people of this country.

Look to the People for your Guidance

WE THE PEOPLE will help you with the task of freeing this nation again… we will point out the infiltrators for you, so please look to us, the citizens of this nation for your help, especially in your decision-making. Our majority will be your greatest advisers you could ever want…

Think of American’s as the best stockholders you could ever want in the most resource rich country on earth.

Do not trust anyone from the old regime; you are in charge of removing them for us. Rid our government of their scourge, and that includes any past Presidential criminals or their administrations that held a strangle hold on our justice system as well as the congress, and senate of both parties.

We understand for now that it may be prudent to lull this junkyard dog with some kind words and treats now before walking by them, just don’t get close to any of them they still bite.

I speak for many of us so-called deplorables when I give this advice Mr. president, we understand that you obviously know that there never was a true bipartisan system before you took office… we certainly do. It was merely a single coin toss handed to us every four years; deciding our fate with a flip of, “Heads they win tails we lose.”

Every American that voted for you and helped you get to where you are right now Sir, we that brought all of us to this moment in history, believe in your words you spoke over the campaign, and we felt you may be our last hope.

It was those words we heard, which you need to back up with action now. Your one urgent task is to restore liberty, and justice… for all in this nation.

What the People Expect of Our New President Elect

  • GET RID OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE, and create an interest free sovereign money system for our grandchildren’s sake.
  • Prosecute the guilty, the politicians, the authorities, the bankers, and the people that abused their power.
  • Reduce the size of this bloated Government, and its gross over-reach into our lives.
  • Uphold the, “Original Constitution,” rescind all unconstitutional Acts, Bills, Laws, or legal theft of our rights and freedoms imposed by those that had the power before you took office, and make it difficult, if not impossible, for them to ever usurp it again.
  • Drive out the scourge of minion cretins that have infected our government…
  • Rid us from all laws regarding victimless crime, designed purely as a tax on this nation for profit, filling the coffers of a corrupt Justice system.
  • Protect this country from all enemies, foreign and domestic. That means not looking for trouble in other nations where there was none to be had.
  • Remember this, our Untied States is, “A REPUBLIC NOT A DEMOCRACY,” understand this one salient fact and the Union will stand behind you when you need us most.
  • Give us back these things Mr. President, and allow us our freedoms, and we will do the rest for you, WE will “Make America Great Again.”

As I said before, “We want it All Back.”

We aren’t expecting sunshine and lollipops either… oh no, but what we are asking for is to be left alone by our government, to just make our own way in this life, and as long as we are not hurting others, we expect not to be interfered with our pursuits of this happiness either.

This United States was once considered to be, the greatest social experiment of freedom ever undertaken in the history of mankind. We are now teetering on an abyss.

You Mr. President have within your grasp the ability to snatch this back from that awful fate.

Do the right thing; keep your word to the people.

Listen to us, we do not need more war, we do not want to police the world, we do not need a one-world government to lead us, by ruthless dictation and their sanitized version of slavery.

What we need now Mr. President, is for the US of A to pave the way for the future of other countries showing them peace and prosperity with fair government, NOT lead by force, but by example.

All the other nations will join us in our quest for a better world, they will see us doing well, and follow our lead.

Rid the corporate world of regulation, but also get rid of the legal Corporate entity that has morphed into a lumbering beast, it is an abomination that is destroying humanity.

The world is tired of the Corporate Elite, and we are tired of seeing their distain for us. In fact, we do not wish to hear from them ever again… point us to a better way of living Mr. President, and we will follow.

This brings me to another point. You were once among this old world regime, and elbow-to-elbow with the Elite I speak of…

This is simple observation, Sir.

The question on everyone’s mind is this. Who are your loyalties with, the people and our government?

A government designed with the betterment of people in mind, or are you still aligned with this shadow government that has created this imbalance of power in our world, that made you a billionaire before you took on this seemingly in surmountable, and heroic task?

Show the people you are for them, and not the Elite.

The one government, serves the many, and will set you free Mr. President, while the other, only serve the few, and will condemn you in the eyes of the World.

A Foul Wind Blows across Washington

Some of your tasks you must accomplish in short order, and they will make you a target for the elite. Corrupt agents have killed for far less in our past, and for far less then what you need to do for us now.

You are in grave danger Mr. President, but it is your duty to the citizens of this great nation, to remain vigilant and never fall victim to their treachery before you finishing the job at hand.

So many other good men, in our nation’s history have suffered some horrible fate. They could not finish the job entrusted to them by the people, you must succeed were they did not.

YOU MUST… for the sake of the people, be ever mindful in your endeavors… especially in saving this nation. History has taught us that those willing to kill, to maintain their grip on the throat of the nation, and will always be waiting in the shadows, ALWAYS… be ever wary Mr. president, until your calling is finished.

This is what, “We the People,” need to do to help our President Elect Succeed

We must use critical thinking, and not react hastily to propaganda, or the subversive ways of the Elite. Ignore the shills who are bent on chaos in this world, they create havoc, and upheaval, designed to distract us from the task of saving our nation from becoming another new world victim in their scheme of world governance.

The Elite still have long tentacles and are capable of far-reaching destruction, yet they use subtle manipulation of the world around us. They wield various media sources (MSM), and use clever tricks to fool the people still sleeping. They use our own social media against us too, distracting us from reality.

We have caught the infiltrator the Wormtongue’s of this world, and they no longer are allowed to poison our youth or us anymore. We must exile these agents of misery from the world forever.

For every truth that is revealed by us, the elitist will spread two lies, we know this now.

They even walk among us, pretending to be one of us.

They are just another snake in the grass acting as if helping people, while fooling us into believing their deceit that they have created around us.

We must question everything we see from now on, what we read, what we hear what we feel before making judgment. We shall never fear them as long as we have knowledge. We must weigh all the information against the scales of proven reality, consistent, and reasonable pure observation of the world. Their power over government is waning; we Mr. President can end this with your help.

The Steady Drone of Mediocrity

Many negative factors on this planet are by design, and use repetition to mold our minds, lull us into complacency. Remember that just because someone tells us a lie over and over, does not make it a truth…

It is going to be hard on most of us to accept this new way of thinking. We are just like King Théoden, who for so long have had poison lies dripped into our ears, until he have like him withered and died inside. Our senses will need to recover first, before our healing begins, however we must get to our feet once again.

These revelations will be hard for many of us. The people will find it impossible to believe that they were fooled for so long, or at all.

In some cases, our entire lives have been lived in lies. This is going to be a big shock for many of us.

I beg all of us to help our neighbors… using compassion and understand for what is happening, to help our nations veterans realize this too, they have fought for what we all believed in, and those that stained their warrior souls are to blame for any hardship they face in life now.

Take heart all our fighting men and women we will help you too. This country still needs you, do not consider ending your lives anymore, and help us fight this common enemy together. Fight with your hearts, and minds now, to preserve what you know are the true and good things in life.

We must recognize the signs of disconnect that is all around us, for this change to take place.

They have forced their media and military double speak on us for years now,  they have alter the meaning of what was once simple language, terms such as the Alternative Media, Conspiracy Theory, Social Justice, Radical Islam, Terrorism, Collateral Damage, Soft Targets, Surgical Strike… non-combatants. Not to mention, the grotesque use of the everyday acronyms in use today, to soften or hide the true meaning of their lies, using ISIS, PTSD, GMO’s and more… to white wash the staunch language of social change and war.

All these are a cleverly designed ruse to help veil the truth, and discourage our open discussion amongst ourselves regarding these topics. We are now afraid to be labeled by these language police, and to speak of such things related to conspiracy because of this propaganda. Their new word meanings are used as a slight of hand trick to misdirect the conversation, before we notice the intent behind their voices. The deceit of the ignorant trolls that follow these liars.

Mainstream Media is Dead

The Main Stream Media is dead.

We will no longer accept these verbal gestures of a dying media, because now we understand the coded message hidden in their shorthand, and we simply must move beyond them…

We must become immune to their digital lies, because we have heard them all before.

Recognize these lies when you hear them, and like our President, we must trust no one until they have proven themselves to us.

Realize now that what we thought was our concrete reasoning by our minds, yet may have not always been true, because now using careful reflection on our part we can ultimately reveal that negative outside influence, repetition and this was the media’s goal all along.

We also need to stop relying on thirty-second sound bites from these media poltergeist, throwing our world at us in carefully managed chunks. The world is much more complicated then what any of the six corporately owned Networks have told us in the past. These manufactured problems were blasted as some MTV flashing video stream, and shouted out by the Hollywood handsome reporters and their immaculate anchor ladies sitting behind glass desks.

These are all just distractions from the true news. They owned us… but no more.

They are dead now… and they shall remain dead with any luck.

What all of us can do to help is NOT to forget our differences as humans, but celebrate our races, culture, our heritage, bring these all together and using our commonalities… against these elite we can stand as one nation against this tyranny. Use these socially binding issues to help the president snatch back this country before it tumbles into that coming abyss.

So Mr. President Elect, I hope you are listening to us now, because we are ready for real change. We know the Elite have not conceded their power over us yet, and they will not give up so easily, they will even try to, “up the anti,” for this fight for liberty. We will do our part… if you promise to do yours.

Your humble servant

Silence Dogood

Do you Have These Go Bag Essentials?

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by Nicholas

It’s not uncommon for preppers to use the terms ‘go bag’ and ‘bug out bag’ as if they were the same thing.  But the reality is that a go bag and bug out bag are two vastly different setups. They each have different intended purposes, but at the same time, neither is less or more important than the other.

If you’ve already put together a personal bug out bag, great!  But if you don’t have a go bag put together yet, or if you thought that a bug out bag was the same as a go bag, then you’re going to need to put your go bag together now.

So, what’s the difference between a bug out bag and a go bag?  A bug out bag is a larger pack designed to hold enough gear and supplies to last you multiple days. Bug out bags are often referred to as three-day survival bags or 72 hour packs. When you need to bug out of your home, your bug out bag is what you carry with you. It’s much heavier and larger than a go bag and generally contains items meant for survival in the wilderness.

In contrast to this, the go bag is a much smaller and lighter bag that contains more essential items.  It’s not designed to keep you alive for multiple days in a survival situation, but rather to serve as your emergency response bag if a disaster happens now and you need certain items to get you home.

 

Each go bag should be unique and contain the gear you think you need, but to help you along here is a list of recommended items to include:

THE LIST

Boots

The first thing you need is a good pair of reliable boots, which can be tied to the outside of the bag, to save space, rather than stored inside of it. Boots or at least sturdy shoes in your go bag can be life-saving if you happen to be wearing shoes unsuitable for walking long distances, such as heels or flip flops. Having a pair of boots with your go bag guarantees that you will always have a pair of footwear with you that provide protection and good traction. NOTE: You would also be wise to include a pair of comfortable socks.

Jacket or Sweatshirt

While a jacket or sweatshirt to takes up more room in a go bag, it will be worth it. Sure, it may be hot and sunny out when disaster hits, but keep in mind that a storm or chilly night could develop before you make it back home. If that happens, you’ll be glad you had a jacket with you.

Knife

This may be the most clichéd survival item of all time, but no go bag is complete without one. Go with a folding tactical knife with an ergonomic grip and a sharp, serrated blade, and a clip to carry it securely in your pocket.  A folding knife is better than a fixed blade for a go bag because it’s more lightweight and takes up less space.

Flashlight

A small LED flashlight with a bright beam (along with extra batteries or even one that is hand-crank) is a must. Go with a small metal model with a clip that can be secured to the inside of your pocket if necessary, just like your knife.

Handgun

Some preppers like to keep a handgun in their go bag while others don’t. On one hand, a handgun provides you with a means of self-defense in a dangerous environment. On the flip-side, it takes up space and bulk in your go bag. If you already have a concealed weapon on your person as part of your everyday carry kit or EDC, you may not need one in your go bag.

Whether you choose to have a gun in your go bag is entirely up to you, but if you do have one, make sure it’s reliable, chambered in a common caliber, and compact enough to be hidden on your person if needed. It should be large enough to fight with, and you should carry at least one spare magazine or speed loader with it.

Water Bottle

Everyone knows the importance of having water in a survival situation. Water is essential to keep you hydrated, quench your thirst, and to aid in cleaning an open wound.  Rotate the water in your go bag out at least once every 6 months, and include a small filter or purification tablets with it (i case you need more when you’re on the run).

Protein Bar

Your go bag won’t be big enough to fit an entire meal and you can manage 24 hours or much longer without food if necessary, but you can at least pack a protein bar or two to give you a quick burst of energy or to calm your rumbling stomach. Food in your go bag is more of a comfort item than a necessity, unless you are diabetic or have other health issues that require regular nourishment.

Cash

Keep a variety of bills ($1s, $5s, $10s, and $20s) in a waterproof case or bag within your go bag. You may need money if you need to buy something you need from someone or if people have blocked off a road and you need to buy your way through.

Lighter

A lighter is simply your easiest method to get a fire going and it can also serve as a backup source of light to your flashlight in a pinch. Alternatively, you could carry a magnesium flint striker or a box of waterproof matches (or a combination of those things).

NOTE: in addition to your lighter, you should also include something that’s highly flammable so you can get a fire going quickly. Cotton balls soaked in Vaseline and then sealed in an airtight container are a good option, so is dryer lint.

Bandana

Like the knife, the bandana is a very clichéd survival item but it’s also among the most versatile. You can use it as a tourniquet, wrap around your mouth and nose to keep dust out, use it as a cool compress if you have a headache, as a napkin, and so on.  Besides, it takes up virtually no space or weight anyway, so why not include it?

Up-to-Date Map of the Area

Even if you think maps are outdated in comparison to a GPS, include a physical map in your go bag instead. Your GPS only works while your batteries last and if satellite communications are not impacted. Your map works as long as you can keep it from being burned or wet. Make sure your map is a recent print and covers your entire city in addition to the surrounding area.

First Aid Kit

Within your go bag needs to be a first aid kit that includes all the basic medical items such as bandages, gauze pads, antibiotics, tweezers, tourniquets, hand sanitizer, and so on. It doesn’t have to be a complete medical kit (which would take up too much room to be a separate bag on its own), but it does need to include all the basics and be enough to keep you comfortable or temporarily treat an injury until you make it home.

NOTE: include at least 24 hours’ worth of prescription medications in your go bag as well.

Pen and Paper

This is simply for taking notes as you go. Keep the paper in the form of a notebook and consider carrying a Sharpie or thick marker in addition to a pen.  The notebook should be sealed in a waterproof bag or container.

Roll of Toilet Paper

You never know when you’ll have to go, and while it will be inconvenient to have to while working your way home in the middle of an urban disaster, it’s definitely better to be prepared then not to be. You’ll live without it but it’s a nice comfort item. Keep at least a small roll sealed in a waterproof bag.

Emergency Contact Information

Have a written list of all ways to contact your friends and family members who live in the city and in the surrounding area. This include home phone numbers, cell phone numbers, e-mail addresses, social media information, home and work addresses, and whatever else you can think of.

CONCLUSION

As you can tell, your go bag will be a lot less complete than your bug out bag.  But it’s supposed to be that way.  The purpose of your go bag is not to survive for an extended period, but rather to keep you alive and comfortable while you’re working your way home in the middle of a sudden urban disaster. Like we said earlier, it’s the bag that you use to get home to your bug out bag.

You want your go bag to be light so that your mobility and agility are not at all hindered by it.  Include only the most essential items and a few comfort items.  If you can think of anything else that you feel needs to be included without adding too much weight and that you feel could increase your chances of survival in your area, go ahead and add it.  But the list you have read is a good place to start and you’ll want to include as many of these items as you can.

How to Get Fuel Mileage from Your BOV

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by Ryan

Many survivalists and preppers have a vehicle specifically designated for bugging out. If your bug out location is more than about 30 miles from your home, a vehicle may be your best option. However, fuel may be hard to come by. In many disaster scenarios fuel costs would skyrocket, gas stations would be flooded by vehicles, or the government would seize as much fuel as possible. What you have in your tank may be the extent of your fuel supply.

So how do you make the most of it? Conditions will likely not be ideal for fuel mileage. You will probably have stop-and-go traffic or road blocks to deal with. You may have to weave between stalled cars or even head off-road to avoid obstacles. There could even be situations where you are being pursued by assailants or government vehicles. This can kill your gas mileage. In this article I want to cover some simple steps you can take to make sure you get every possible mile out of the fuel you have.

Driving Habits

I know most people immediately think about the vehicle when trying to improve gas mileage, but how you drive the vehicle can affect your MPG as much as 15%. First, try not to drive over 65 MPH. I know this is no fun on the highway, but it makes a big difference. As you get to higher speeds, wind drag gets to be an issue. This will make your engine work much harder to maintain your speed. The extra few MPH would only get you to your destination a few minutes faster, so unless you are being chased you need to slow down.

One of the easiest ways to maintain good gas mileage is to use the systems build into the vehicle.  Cruise control is one of those systems and will keep you from going too fast and keep you from having to accelerate when your speed dips.  Also, overdrive is a good way to save some gas.  This is the most efficient gear any vehicle has, so once you get up to speed on the highway make sure you shift into overdrive.  It will make a difference in your gas tank.

You also need to watch your starts and stops. The worst practice for gas mileage is racing to a stop light, slamming on the breaks, and then gunning the throttle when it turns green. Your goal is to slowly roll up to red lights and gently accelerate when they turn green. Pay attention to anything several hundred yards ahead and gently let off the gas instead of using your brake pedal. If you can avoid coming to a complete stop, then you are doing it right.  These practices make a huge difference in how far a tank will take you.

Another way to suck the MPG out of your vehicle is air conditioning. It may seem like a necessity these days, but this luxury feature drastically reduces your fuel efficiency. If you can avoid using the A/C, that would be ideal. Idling is another practice that hurts your efficiency. In a bug-out situation, sitting in one place is a probability. Instead of idling, shut off your engine and start it up again when the traffic moves. Idling is one of the most inefficient things you can do in a car.

Maintenance and Modification

Tire pressure is one of the most important factors for gas mileage. You should be checking your pressure as often as possible, and do not rely on sensors alone to alert you that they are low. Low tire pressure creates more resistance on the road, and that means burning more gas. Your tires should be labeled with the ideal PSI, so be sure to stay within that range or just below the maximum.

Your fuel has a lot to do with the miles you get out of it. However, extra or premium fuel is not the answer in most cases. If you have a high compression engine that suggests premium, then you need to buy the expensive stuff. It should say so right inside your fuel port. Otherwise, save some money and go with standard unleaded. You can also use an additive in your fuel to clean your injectors, and that could equate to better MPGs.

Anything that creates drag on your vehicle has to be removed unless absolutely needed. This would include roof racks, bike racks, and luggage carriers. Drag greatly affects your fuel mileage. You do not have to throw these items in the trash, but only use them when needed. You can also buy tires that reduce resistance. Most people are not aware of this, but there are actually tires specifically designed for better gas mileage. For a few extra bucks you can really increase your efficiency.

Change or clean your air filter on a regular basis. Efficient operation of any engine requires fuel, ignition, and oxygen. If you have a dirty filter, you are not getting enough oxygen to the engine. If you have the inexpensive paper filters, change them regularly. If you have a washable filter, wash it as often as you can. In dirty or off-road conditions, you must pay special attention to this.

Spark plugs are another factor in this equation… ignition. If your plugs are not operating properly, you will lose efficiency. This is an inexpensive way to ensure your engine runs smoothly. Regular oil changes are another good way to keep things going. This seems like common sense, but most people push their engines beyond the suggested life of their oil and filter. You can also ensure there is a spare tire, but that does increase the weight by around 1 %. These maintenance items are vital.

How much fuel is in your tank is a common assumption to affect gas mileage.  However, it does not move the needle as much as expected.  Whether full or empty, an unleaded tank acts about the same.  However, the weight of your vehicle can greatly affect your gas mileage.  Storing additional fuel in separate tanks is a good idea, but your other gear needs to be as light as possible.  When you are looking at bugging out, bring gear that weighs less if you have the choice.  This is especially true for heavy equipment like chain saws, generators, and pumps.

There are a few modern maintenance procedures that could make a big difference. One is an ultrasonic cleaning of your injectors. This is the only way to be sure your fuel injectors are clean. Clean injectors mean a proper ratio of air to fuel, so that is essential for good gas mileage. You can also look into having your vehicle’s computer remapped. This is not a common practice, but the computer of modern vehicles are very capable of adjustments based on fuel economy.

Alternative Power Source Vehicles

Buying vehicles that do not rely on only gasoline or converting vehicles to use alternative fuels is getting more popular. This could mean buying a hybrid and using battery power to improve your gas mileage, or it could mean buying an electric car. However, finding a working charging station may be tough. Even solar cars are getting to be a more realistic option. You have to think about how the vehicle will operate after a potential collapse.

It may mean converting a diesel into a biodiesel vehicle that can run on recycled cooking oil. If you plan to stay near civilization, you will likely always be near restaurants having a vat of used cooking oil out back. This supply of fuel will likely exists years after restaurants shut down. There are even ways to covert vehicles to be powered by firewood or compost. If you are worried about running out of unleaded, do some research and get creative.

When your goal is gas mileage and your life depends on it, focus is the key. To get the most out of your fuel, you must constantly be monitoring the condition of your vehicle and the way you drive that vehicle. It is more about a mindset than any given action. Those of us that have the right mindset know that we can tell when it is time for an oil change without looking at the calendar. We know to check the tire pressure or the air filter without being reminded. This mindset is vital.

However, to be truly ready to bug out by vehicle you must do more than that. You must have a proactive mindset. This means owning the right vehicle and modifying it if needed. It means taking steps to prepare your vehicle months before you may need it. You cannot just be good at maintenance. You must build the perfect vehicle for survival. If you take the time and make the right moves, the fuel in your tank will easily get you to safety when it counts.

Reasons You Should Stockpile Coffee

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by Shannon

If you’re one of those folks, living in a nine-to-five world and just trying to make it through another day without falling asleep in random places, coffee is a blessing. Some people don’t function unless they’re on the second cup of coffee.

One fun fact about coffee is that it was associated with intellectual conversation in 17th century England. With just a penny back then, a person could have a cup of coffee which allegedly helped individuals flock together and form a mentally stimulating conversation.

In a situation, wherein survival may be your priority, a proper dose of alertness is just what you need to keep yourself aware of your environment and notice any potential threats. While coffee may not be part of the priority list, there are a few reasons why it’s a good idea to stockpile it when preparing for an emergency and critical situations.

HEALTH BENEFITS

The most important reason why it’s a good idea to stockpile coffee is its health benefits. Researchers have found that coffee can protect you from a number of fatal diseases such as type 2 diabetes, Parkinson’s, liver disease, cancer, and heart failure. Significant data published by researchers have found coffee actually has an inverse relationship with the aforementioned diseases. This means that the more cups of coffee you take, the fewer chances that your health will suffer.

Aside from the fact that coffee without add-ons has a very low-calorie count (two calories), it’s also a rich source of antioxidants that can prevent oxidation or the process in which your body experiences a chemical chain reaction that can eventually lead to damaged cells.

Other health risks that coffee protects you from includes Alzheimer’s, dementia and stroke. This is the bottom line: coffee can help you live longer, at least in the health department. However, it’s also important to note here that there’s a value in keeping everything in moderation. In general, anything that is more can prove to be dangerous instead of beneficial.

FASTER, STRONGER, SMARTER

Another thing that can prove that coffee can be useful in times of dangerous and critical emergencies and situations is its ability to improve mental and physical capacities. The main reason many people drink coffee is because it gives them higher levels of awareness. It helps ease them from being asleep to being completely awake. This means that the main target of coffee is the brain which helps improve memory, energy levels, vigilance, and cognitive functioning.

Because coffee’s main target is the nervous system, it helps your brain send signals throughout your body to perform many functions such as breaking down fats and converting it to energy that you can draw from. Aside from this, it also increases the fight or flight hormone in your body which increases reaction time and general physical performance.

When you find yourself in a situation wherein you have either stay and fight or leave and flee, these effects of coffee might be something you will greatly appreciate. It helps think of a quick way out while being aware of your surroundings thus reducing the risks that can endanger your chances of survival. Another scenario where coffee can be a big help is when you’re on night watch duty. You’re no use to the people you wish to protect if you’re anything less than alert and awake.

WATER-COFFEE RELATIONSHIP

One of the basic things that should be in your stockpile is clean water, if not water filters. Because primitive water filtering system includes rocks and different kinds of soil, it can make the end product less than desirable in its taste. But because primitive water filtering systems are not much of an option for most preppers, you may want to have an actual personal water filter on hand which gives clean and tasteless drinking water. In all scenarios, coffee can play a good part.

Because of the easily palpable taste of coffee, you can drink your water without offending your taste buds. It gives you added nutrients and it gives you a good reason to drink at least one cup of water in a day which can help prevent dehydration, even if you have water filters and the taste won’t be an issue.

As we know, contaminated water is filled with bacteria and pathogens that can render you weak and in the worst case scenario, dying. If you like a hot cup of coffee, then you’re in luck.

http://cottagelife.com/environment/does-boiling-lake-water-kill-bacteria-and-viruses

If you let the water boil for at least one minute, it will kill most bacteria that could have endangered your health including Cryptosporidium, Giardia, and other viruses.

BARTER MATERIAL

If you want something but can’t afford it, you can always barter. Coffee happens to be one of the most popular barter items in the world. Even now, coffee is the second most tradeable commodity, only defeated by oil. The reason for this is simple: raw coffee can be stored for a very long time without risking the loss of flavor.

In this sense, coffee can be your currency, especially when you need items such as food or medicine but have nothing to pay for it. Though it might hurt for you to part with your much-needed coffee, it’s always good to have a backup plan that can save you and your companions in times of need. The best way to barter coffee is to make sure that it is green coffee, also known as raw coffee. This is because coffee significantly loses its value once it has been roasted. However, this does not mean that you won’t find a way to barter in your instant coffee, especially to people who may not have the time or the tools to roast and grind it.

Coffee disappears fast from grocery shelves in times of crisis. To give you a general idea of coffee’s shelf life, ground coffee lasts 3-5 months, instant coffee can last between 2 and 20 years and whole bean coffee can last between 6 and 9 months. Unopened, of course.

Remember that the best way to store coffee is to put in the freezer. Also, like most spices coffee beans will last longer than roasted or powdered coffee.

UNUSUAL USES OF COFFEE

Coffee is also great for keeping your body temperature up, especially if you find yourself stranded in cold places. Holding a hot mug and letting the liquid warm up your insides can keep you from freezing to death.

Another thing that coffee is good for is how it can change the acidity of the soil. If you plan to have a portable garden with you or if you want to grow your own potatoes, you can pour coffee on the soil in to act as composting agent. Beyond this, you can add taste to your meat by rubbing the coffee and grilling it to give you a more wholesome meal.

Hygiene is another thing that coffee can help you with. Several studies have found that if you put coffee grounds on your face and rub it, you can remove lots of dead skin which, at the very least, will help you feel fresh and clean.

FIGHT YOUR DEMONS

Aside from the physical ailments that coffee can protect you from, it can also aid in your fight against the worst enemy you can have in critical situations: yourself. In danger, alone and scared, you’re more than likely to lose hope and the will to move forward. Depression is a serious mental illness that most people fail to understand. It’s a vicious cycle that you don’t want to get caught up in. Luckily, coffee can help you.

It has been found to have the abilities to boost morale and enhancing your mood. By extension, it also reduces the risk of self-harm or suicide. This is important because if you’re alone, coffee might be the best thing that you have on hand as it can give you a few minutes to unwind and evaluate your situation while giving you the mental energy that you will need to face the day. On the other hand, if you’re trying to survive in groups, death can make or break you in a situation. In both scenarios, coffee plays an important role in giving you a sense of normalcy while at the same time giving some form of protection for your mental health.

While coffee may not be at the top of your priority list, you may still want to consider integrating it after you’ve managed to get all your basic need items together. Coffee has been proven to be beneficial in many areas such as gardening, health, hygiene, and bartering. It may not seem like much, but at the end of the day, coffee might just end up saving your life over and over again.

This is the bottom line: having a stockpile of coffee is a good idea even if you’re not an avid fan.

Homemade Survival Gear and Tools

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by Shannon

Immediately after you find yourself in a dangerous situation, most people think first about how they’re going to defend and protect themselves. Often, the situation will give you little leeway and there’s an even smaller chance that you just happen to have the proper resources within reach. This is why having the basic knowledge and skills to make homemade resources is important.

The beauty and advantage of knowing how to make several things such as weapons and gear are that you have as many of them as you can make. This suggests an unlimited armory. Depending on your skills, you may even manage to make quality gear and weapons that can last longer than those you normally buy from a store.

To help you gain a basic understanding, here are a few homemade survival gear and tools that you can make on your own.

HOMEMADE KNIFE

The knife is one of the most basic survival weapons that you should have in critical situations. Having something to help you protect yourself will help lessen your worries. A knife in hand gives you the advantage of not being completely helpless and vulnerable. While some people may have gotten the chance to visit a reputable store and purchase a good knife, you may not have gotten around to that yet.

But worry not. Here’s a quick list of tips on how to make your own knife from scratch:

  1. Virtually anything that has or can have a sharp point can be made into a knife. Bones, shells, aluminum, steel, and carbon are just some of those materials. Pick a kind of blade that will suit your current situation. The goal is to make a knife that can perform its basic functions such as puncturing or slicing. You need to reach a compromise between an object that will make a good sharp knife but still withstand considerable pressure and resistance.
  2. One of the few things that can fulfill the requirements above is stone. While it’s true that it may take some time to make, the result is usually sturdier and sharper than anything you want to use.

(http://survivallife.com/homemade-weapons-awaken-inner-caveman/)

  1. The caveman knife or the knife that’s made from smashing rocks together gets its name because of the materials you will need. It does not require any money but it will demand a lot of strength and effort. Do not settle for anything less than a knife that works perfectly.
  2. Picking a handle for your knife is a lot easier compared to the first few things you have to do. The only thing that you’re going to want to make sure of is that it fits in your hand. Handles can be potentially dangerous if you choose your materials haphazardly. Find a handle that can hold your blade in place while at the same fit in your hand comfortably and without causing any injury.
  3. Tie everything together with a rope that is as sturdy the as the whole knife itself. Never overestimate the ability of the rope you’re going to use to hold everything together. One can argue that this part is what makes the knife worth using.

HOMEMADE TELESCOPE

Being able to see the general condition of a place that is meters away from you is a handy ability. It allows you to determine if there’s anything dangerous nearby without actually going to where you think the danger might be. On that note, it’s an advantage to have a telescope on hand for anyone who would like to survive dangerous situations such as being stranded on an unknown land.

Fortunately, this is another thing that you don’t have to spend your money on, especially if you’re not picky. Here’s how to make one:

The general guidelines for making your own telescope is to first know your lenses. Every kind serves a different purpose. Choose a lens that will help you the most in your situation and something that you’re comfortable with. Second, be mindful of the length. Assess your emergency kit and choose the size of your telescope accordingly. A squashed telescope is not good for anything and you will most likely need both hands in a survival situation which means that you can’t hold your telescope forever.

HOMEMADE DIAPERS

Probably one of the things that most people forget about surviving in the wilderness is the fact that you may not have time to create your own toilet. In some situations, you may not even have the luxury of time to squat and pee or take a dump because you’re on the run from something or someone who could harm you. This is where homemade diapers come in handy.

If you’re trying to survive with your family, then your kids will have needs too and they might not have the patience to wait until the appropriate time to relieve themselves. If you’re traveling, sometimes you can’t afford to take a stopover. In the same situation, even parents can wear their own diapers to help tide them over at least until they’re a considerable distance away from anything or anyone dangerous.

Because supermarkets will almost certainly be the first place that will get looted in the case of a disaster, you might not get the chance to buy and stockpile diapers. But there’s good news. You can make your own diapers from minimal materials.

For those who have a sewing machine on hand, check this out for detailed instructions on how to make cloth diapers:

http://www.wikihow.com/Make-Cloth-Diapers

If you have to make one quick, this is how you can:

http://www.wikihow.com/Make-a-Homemade-Diaper

HOMEMADE COMPASS

Another survival tool that can come in handy is the compass. Having one means that you can at least have a general knowledge of where you’re at and where you should go. It helps you navigate through the woods and even in open water.

Like the knife, telescope, and diapers, you don’t need to spend money on a compass. All you need is a plastic bowl filled with water, cork, magnet, and a needle. It might seem a little dubious but this video explains why it’s pretty reliable:

This is one of the times when you can trust Mother Earth and all its elements not to lead you and your family astray.

HOMEMADE HOLSTER

Common sense dictates that you should never put your gun between the waistband of your pants and your skin. There’s a possibility that it might go off and you will end up with an unnecessary injury that you could have prevented from happening if you had a holster. This common rule also applies to knives and just about any kind of weapon.

Why not just put them in the bug out bag? You never know when you might need your weapon. The last thing that you want to happen to you is to be unprepared for a fight simply because your weapon is in your bag. In that situation, you might not have enough time to open the bag and grab it. This is why knowing how to make your own holster comes in handy.

Not only does it cost less, it also gives you the freedom to calculate the sizes you see fit and at the same time, make sure that it has quality. The only disadvantage is that it’s time-consuming. Regardless, it’s still worth it.

Here’s how you can make your own leather holster either for your knife or for your gun: http://www.survivalresources.com/Articles/Leather_Holsters.html

HOMEMADE BAG

As you keep forging through the unknown in an effort to survive, you will accumulate a lot of things that you think may come in handy. Anything sharp, something that can function as a container, water bottles or even game from your hunt will have to be set aside. At the same time, you have to think about how fast you can gather your stuff and flee if you have to.

Having an extra bag has its benefits. A bag made out recycled plastic bottles it sturdier than ordinary cotton and best of all, it’s waterproof. It’s the perfect thing to have when you need to keep important things from getting wet or damaged. It also plays to your advantage because you’re likely to encounter water bottles in a lot of public places. You just need to know what to with them.

Here’s how: http://www.instructables.com/id/How-to-make-a-bag-out-of-recycled-plastic-bottles/?ALLSTEPS

  1. The number of plastic bottles that you need will depend on how long you need the bag to be. The best and balanced number is three bottles. Make sure that they’re at least the same size even if they’re not the same brand.
  2. Cut the top of the bottles.
  3. Take one bottle and cut two lines (width should be the same as the bottom of the bottle) on both sides. Don’t remove the strip as it will serve as the connecting agent of your bag.
  4. For the other two bottles, cut two line on one side with the width approximately the same as the strips on the first bottle.
  5. Punch holes through the sides of the bottles that you cut through. Be careful not to punch the holes too closely or too far apart.
  6. Join the bottles by tying a rope through the holes and wrapping the bottom of the bag in tape. At the topmost holes of the left and right bottles, tie a rope to make a handle.

 HOMEMADE SLEEPING BAG

In order to survive critical situations, we not only have to gather food and find water, we also have to have a shelter wherein we can sleep through the night. Sleep is important because it’s the only time that your body and brain can have the time they need to rest and recharge. Without sleep, we compromise many things such as alertness, awareness, physical abilities and reaction times. That one-second delay before you realize there’s danger may be just what it takes to kill you.

For sleep to be effective, you will have to be as comfortable as possible even if you’re laying down on the ground. You will also need warmth to keep your body temperature regulated as you take your much-needed rest. A lightweight sleeping bag must be in your survival gear and tools if you wish to survive longer.

Here’s how to make one at home: http://purebound.com/homemade/sleepingbag/:

  1. Start by choosing what material your sleeping bag is going to be made from. It can be a quilt or cloth or anything that is lightweight but still give you the amount of warmth that you will need. Remember that the most practical sleeping bags are those that you can carry around without it being in the way or being too heavy.
  2. Decide whether you want to have a hooded or non-hooded sleeping bag. The only difference in the process of making is that you’re going to have to sew together the hood and the rest of the sleeping bag.
  3. Lie down in the material you chose and make sure that you have enough space for most of your preferred sleeping positions. But be careful not to create too much space as that will take away the warmth.
  4. The best way to ensure that you have the right size is to make a cutout pattern so you don’t have to lie in it every time you finish making it. It also helps you give it definite measurements that will come in handy if you have to readjust and resize your sleeping bag material.
  5. Every time you sew through the fabric, make sure that you fold it so it doesn’t fray. This includes the process when you make the two ends of the fabric meet by sewing in a zipper.
  6. After you’ve made your sleeping bag, you can attach Velcro over the sleeping bag to give your another set of security measure in case the zipper breaks.
  7. Don’t forget to make a foot pocket to complete your sleeping bag. The process is general the same and it would really help if you found a material that you can split into parts so that the sleeping bag is more or less consistent in terms of fabric.

There are many other survival gear and tools that you should have in case of emergencies. Most people will panic because of the absence of some of those tools. But if there’s anything about survival that we should remember, it’s that it goes perfectly with creativity. You can make just about anything from everything and all you need is time, effort and innovation.

Do You Prepare in Fear?

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by Mira

That may seem like a weird question to some, but in actuality it’s an extremely valid one. What motivates you to prepare for a collapse? I’ve always been conscious of the need to prepare myself for the unexpected.

Living in the South, we always had to be ready for a tornado outbreak, so we planned accordingly, but it wasn’t until September 11 that I realized I really needed to put more thought into my disaster and crisis plans. Fear of the uncertainty propelled my desire to be a better prepared person, but I did so haphazardly simply because I was afraid, and my prepping was unsuccessful because of it.

After 9-11, the number of people preparing for another terrorist attack skyrocketed. All of a sudden, our home soil wasn’t safe anymore. A number of websites sprung up after the attack on America. There were many good ones, and sadly to say there were a lot of bad websites that looked and sounded good, but overall was just there to extort money from fearful citizens. The common theme was preparedness and being ready for the next one. It was a crazy time and fear ruled over many.

Fear is a powerful emotion. Fear will cause you to do things you wouldn’t ever think you would do in a million years. Fear will also cause you to forget things that are second nature. And unfortunately, money hungry people prey upon this with websites and blogs that incite the fear of the unknown inside of you and then exploit that fear to get you to buy their products.

How do you prevent yourself from becoming a victim of fear mongering sites and businesses? Simply put, you need to know why you are preparing in the first place.

Do you have a family whose welfare you are in charge of? Or are you single and wanting to make sure that when SHTF you are one of the first to survive? Whatever your reason you must have it clearly in view. It’s okay to be afraid of an unknown future crisis event, whether it been a devastating EMP blast, or an all-out civil war. Fear is natural.

Prepare with a Purpose

If you have been just preparing on the fly for a while with no real plan or purpose, it’s time to stop now and reorganize. If not, you’ll find yourself being tossed about when you hear of crisis level events going on all over the world. Fear will continue to reign unless you make a good plan.

Planning according to your own individual situation is vitally important. Fear should not be the reason motivating your desire to prep. A good reason to start prepping could be something as simple as preserving your life and those with you.

Another good reason to prepare is to make sure that when the next crisis happens, you’ll be able to provide for your household and also anyone else that may need your expertise (ex. Medical, EMT, or any other trade.)

Can You Prep and Enjoy Your Life at the Same Time?

The answer to that question is YES. Some people perceive preppers and the prepping lifestyle as fanatical, but it’s not like that at all. With television shows like National Geographic’s Doomsday Preppers, the lifestyle has come into the limelight. When researching for this article, a simple poll was taken on the opinions of the general public about the prepping lifestyle.

A majority of those asked, didn’t really know anything about it. And those who had been exposed to it, didn’t have a good opinion of it. One person even stated that preppers seem to: “Miss out on life preparing for the end of the world.” – F. Childs, Atlanta, Georgia.

Is this something that you feel will happen if you start making prepping an important part of your life? Do you think that you’ll have to stop living and enjoying life in order to properly prep for a coming disaster or collapse? If so, it’s natural to feel that way. But you really don’t have to change your life all too much in order to be a successful prepper.

Make Simple Adjustments to Your Lifestyle

What kind of adjustments can you make in your life? You don’t have to do anything suddenly drastic like selling your 4-bedroom home and building a survival bunker in the woods. Everything you need to do, can be done slowly and on a daily basis.

There are several things you could do:

  • Make a Prepping Budget – First and foremost, before you take on any project you must first budget it and see how much money and resources you have to work with. This budget should include all of your current income from all sources and all of your expenses. Leaving anything out would not give you an accurate picture of what you have to work with.
  • Create an Emergency Prepping Fund – It helps if this fund is an actual box or empty jar. Any money you save, get back in change, or find laying around the house, should go into the fund box.
  • Create a List and an Agenda – This should be a list of the ideas/ways you plan to adjust your life while prepping on a daily basis, and an agenda of how you’re going to put those ideas/ways into action.
  • Start Using Cash Only – This may be one of the hardest, if not the hardest thing to do for some people. Take all your credit cards with high interest rates and either cut them up or put them all into an envelope. With your budget that you create, you’ll be able to guestimate how much cash will be needed for the week.
  • Bargain shop and use coupons – Shopping for bargains and using coupons takes some getting used to. It does take time to search out where the best deals are in town on items for your emergency food supply, but it’s well worth the adjustment. Connect with others in your area who are couponers and ask them to teach you how to benefit mostly from combining coupons and bargain sales. A lot of times you can get dozens of items for the pantry for just a few dollars.
  • Dine out less, or Stop all together – This may be hard for some to do, because dining out can be viewed as a reward for working hard all week. But when you cut back on the amount of times you dine out, the money you save can go towards stocking up on the items that you need.
  • Say “No” to a Car Note – If you have a massive car note, you can understand the strain that it puts on your wallet. Consider giving up the note, and paying cash for an efficient car. You might also want to consider walking, taking public transit, or even riding a bike so you’ll have more funds to allocate towards your prepping fund.
  • Buy in Bulk – When combined with bargain shopping and couponing, you save an extremely large amount of cash and get more product for your money. The cash you save and/or the change you get back should go into the emergency prepping fund. Bulk membership stores like SAMs Club or Costco often have great deals on items.
  • Give Up Other “Luxuries” – You may have enjoyed stopping by the local Starbucks once a week and ordering a Grande caramel macchiato, but once you start interweaving prepping with your daily routine, luxuries like this have to go. This warm beverage cost about the same price as a 5lb bag of rice. Instead of the $5 cup of coffee, buy the 5lb bag of rice for your pantry. Very painful now, but you’ll be glad you did later.

Hopefully by now, you feel more confident about your ability to prep successfully. Prepping doesn’t have to be a scary adventure. If fear got you started on prepping, allow knowledge about what you’re prepping for to propel you forward. It may be painful to give up some of the things that you now enjoy in life in order to prep for a future crisis but it’s worth the sacrifice.

If you keep your eyes simple and cut back little by little every day, you will be thankful you did when the SHTF. The naysayers say that it’ll never happen, but we all know it will. A knowledgeable prepper is a surviving prepper. When the next crisis or the inevitable collapse happens, you’ll be sheltering in place thankful that you decided to make a conscious effort to prep the right way.

When that times comes, you’ll see some of you neighbors scrambling and scrounging for supplies. But you’ll be fine where you are, because you made the necessary changes and sacrifices in order to work prepping into your everyday life. It may have been uncomfortable but it was doable. And it made the difference in whether or not you would be prepared for that moment. Push fear aside and be ready when the SHTF. Happy prepping!

Amateur Radio and DXing

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by Shannon

If there’s one thing about the world that we’re completely sure of, it’s that change is constant. We’ve seen fashion trends differ from the decades before today. We’ve seen our planet evolve from flat land and rising mountains to plain fields and tall buildings. But most of all, we’ve seen change in how we communicate to each other.

We’ve gone through travelling to deliver a message, writing letters and calling through ancient telephones before finally getting to where we are now: the internet age. Everybody owns something that can connect to the internet, be it a smartphone or a laptop. If you need to reach out to someone across the world, no problem. If you need to send documents to someone important but you don’t want to leave the place you’re in right now, there’s e-mail.

Despite the evolution of our form of communication, there’s one disadvantage that most people forget. Because the internet needs a constantly running system of connections and power to function, it’s very vulnerable to power outages or anything that can cause electronic disruption.

Thus, in the event of a major disaster like a country-wide blackout, flooding or earthquake, even the cellphone’s signal will suffer. Towers will be rendered useless without power. In that situation, how will you contact anyone outside the disaster area? How will you know where to go and what’s happening outside? This is where the amateur radio comes in.

WHAT IS AMATEUR RADIO?

When any common form of communication fails, when your phone can’t find signal, when the internet is overloaded, the amateur radio is what will save the day. Also called the “ham radio,” this form of communication functions by using the radio frequency spectrum. It covers a significant distance to the point that some transmissions can even allow you to talk to astronauts on the International Space Station.

The wide range of possibilities that you can do with amateur radio has allowed it to invade several aspects of the society including education and disaster aid. It also functions as something like a social media as it allows people to communicate with each other no matter where they are. The people who use amateur radio (“hams”) come from a large variety of background like doctors, kids, teachers, truck drivers and maybe even the person next door.

Because of its casual nature, most people consider amateur radio as a hobby. But the unsaid part of history reveals that amateur radio is more than that. For example, the Amateur Radio Service aided communications when 9/11 and hurricane Katrina happened because of its ability to provide communication even in the worst conditions.

The “amateur” part of amateur radio is perhaps the best thing about it. Amateur radio operators do what they do without commercial intent, meaning that they volunteer to do it without expecting to be paid. Another important facet of the amateur radio is the DXers or amateur radio operators who specialize in making two-way radio contact with other amateurs in distant places.

Amateur radio is represented and coordinated by the International Amateur Radio Union, which can also be referred to as the headquarters.

HOW CAN YOU BE PART OF THE AMATEUR RADIO SERVICE?

While anyone and everyone can be part of the amateur radio service, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) recognizes its potential and thus seeks to expand its pool of experts who can give a helping hand during emergency situations in any condition be it an earthquake, tsunami or a hurricane. This means that to be part of the amateur radio service, you will need a license.

Another reason why you need to have a license is because radio waves go well beyond a country’s borders which instantly makes an international concern. Radio also has potentially clandestine uses which could place national security at risk if used by the wrong people.

In some countries, you will only be allowed to purchase amateur radio equipment is if you have a license. In others, your license may only be valid in that area and you will be required to get another if you want to move to another country.

Requirements for amateur radio licensing and the privileges that come with it vary from country to country though there is one thing that all countries ask for. Every aspiring amateur radio operator must display technical knowledge and understanding of the basic concepts. This is done and verified through an exam. Countries also require operators to know the rules and regulations lest they accidentally do something illegal like leaking classified information. In some countries, they are required to display hands-on experience through a practical exam.

Once you’re licensed, you will be oriented on the different privileges attached to your success. You can be granted longer distance coverage, more power, permitted experimentation and better frequency ability.

HOW DO YOU COMMUNICATE OVER AMATEUR RADIO?

One of the best things about amateur radio is its flexibility. Many amateur radio operators utilize different modes of communication, partly because of the need to be prepared for anything including audio failure. While most use their voices to communicate over amplitude modulation (AM), frequency modulation (FM) or Single Sideband (SSB), others have found ways to communicate.

Aside from voice, amateur radio operators use text, images and data. They can send images through television and text through a digital medium such as a computer. One of the most interesting ways that amateur radio operators communicate is through Morse code. Its usefulness is still very popular and at one point, a basic knowledge of Morse code is required for licensing. Other forms of communication include Packet, Radio Teletype or what’s commonly known as Ritty, and PSK.

The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) is the agency that handles the frequency allocations and determines which bands are open for use depending on where you are and what you intend to do over the frequency. Their job is important as it ensures that other radio services within or outside the country do suffer interference. The American Radio Relay League’s (ARRL) “The FCC Rule Book” provides a comprehensive and in-depth information about the frequency allocations.

WHAT IS DX-ING?

DXing is one of the most popular “departments” of amateur radio. While other focus on using their license to help educate people or simply talk to others, DXers make it a hobby to try to listen and connect distant stations. In this case, these locations are may be from one country to another. The activity was named as such because of its nature. “D” refers to distance and “X” means the unknown.

The practice and interest of DXing actually stems from the early days of radio broadcasting. When listeners believe that they just heard a broadcast from a distant location, they write reception reports (now known as the Signal, Interference, Noise, Propagation and Overall merit report or simply, SINPO report) and send it to different broadcasters in hopes of getting a verification that the broadcast they heard was real. The certificate they receive back from the broadcaster is called QSL cards and it confirms the listener’s reception report. Collecting the cards were also used by the broadcasters themselves when they want to study the effectiveness of their transmissions.

The importance of DXing stems from the fact that it allows you to listen to broadcasts from far beyond your own country. DXing allows you to connect with the outside world without the help of a satellite or the internet which can be very challenging and the prime reason why it’s a popular hobby among amateur radio operators.

Amateur radio operators who focus on DXing are called “DXers.” Because of the challenging nature of DXing, some clubs and organizations award certificates to those who are successful in connecting to a remote area in the world. For example, the ARRL offers the DX Century Club (DXCC) award for DXers who worked to confirm at least 100 broadcasters on the ARRL DXCC List. To make it more interesting, amateurs have mounted DXpeditions to areas with no permanent base of amateur radio operators.

HOW DO YOU DX?

If you want to try and be DXer, there are several things that you have to know. First, attentive listening is a skill that you will need. Being a DXer means that you will need to surf through the band and look for frequencies that fade in or out, or something that is disguised by loud static. You need to pay attention to the tiny details and you need to be familiar enough with the radio to pinpoint whether or not the frequency exists locally.

The best location to grab a radio and try to listen for far away frequencies is to go out to a body of water, preferably the beach. This is because the body of water helps pull in radio signals. The location also draws you away from background noises that will hinder your listening. DXing is also directional in such a way that however you hold or the orientation of your radio can make a difference. The weather can also affect DXing and most DXers found that it’s best to do it at night.

To keep up with what’s happening in the DX world and to find out about contests and rewards for a little bit of motivation, you can tune in to the DXNews. It gives you information on breaking news and a calendar that lets you know the activities of other DXers and DXpeditions.

Amateur radio may seem like a hobby wherein you sit down all day and listen to the radio. But in actuality, this hobby has saved many lives as it allows people to communicate with each other in the face of the lack of power or internet. Amateur radio provides the necessary link between disaster areas and responders as it makes it easier for them to know where the victims are and what to expect so rescuers don’t go in unprepared. This hobby is something that you might want to look into especially if you want to properly prepare for critical situations.

 

LOCAL POLITICS and GRASS ROOTS SURVIVAL

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by Carmen Amedori

Ethics: an area of study that deals with ideas about what is good and bad behavior: a branch of philosophy dealing with what is morally right or wrong.

When Trump is elected, we will have exercised our 10th Amendment and dismantled a tyrannical political system. It is then our responsibility to rebuild the Republic and that starts from the ground up with local offices. We have a lot of work ahead of us.

There is so much going on in our Country today, round and round we go as we try to prioritize where to focus our efforts.

BYP – back yard politics is the place to begin. There are dozens of news stories a week covering national political events, scandals, etc. But it is within our reach to begin at the beginning. Remember, the best government is the one closest to the people. Locally, every day in some small town, city, and county across this nation there are elected officials scheming to take rights away from their citizens Stories like the one below are not mainstream media. Hell, even the small town newspapers don’t cover it. Yet, while these type of elected officials, “public servants” make our skin crawl, we continue to reelect them.

Of the 168,000 residents in Carroll County, Maryland 78 percent are over the age 18 and therefore old enough to vote. This county loves to vote. They appear to be engaged in the process. The party line registration is Democrats 31,797, Republican 59,483, Libertarian 581, Green 271, Other 948, and unaffiliated 21,278.

Carroll County form of Government is five county commissioner. This form of government means there is no separate executive branch. The commissioners are the executive as well as the legislative branch. So every county department reports to them for budget demands. This is unlike a City or Town Mayor and Council. In that form, the Mayor holds executive power.

The census projected the population in bucolic Carroll County to increase only by 0.3% from 2010 to 2015. This is important because it means only attrition changes the voting base. Our favorite 90-something-year-old patriots, those from the Greatest Generation are passing on – no longer available to vote. And their spot is being filled by the millennial who is just turning 18.

Now in many ways the millennial is telling us the status quo is unacceptable. We agree for different reasons.” The millennial favors a socialist government. The millennial views the world as an equal playground and the more restrictions on our God given rights, the better for a “safer and non- offensive world.”

What they need to understand is a government who can restrict any type of liberty will. They will cherry pick the U.S. Constitution, treat it like an a la carte menu, and each new restriction results in an avalanche of more lost liberties.

TRACK THE CASH

Full time schoolteacher and current Westminster City Councilman runs for Carroll County Commissioner. The teacher’s unions who donate money and time to his campaign back him. Be clear, no one is trying to deny him a right to hold an elected office. Simply because he is a teacher, does not mean he cannot run for the office. However, once he wins, because of simply the appearance of impropriety, he should resign from his teaching job. As stated above, the commissioners have absolute executive power. No one commissioner is more responsible than the other is for any decisions. The commissioner president is not a mayor or governor but merely a title that unfortunately gets him a little more in salary from the taxpayers.

So in the rolling hills of Carroll County, the total FY 17 budget is $388,407,000 and of that, 49.92 percent will go to the Public Schools. The Carroll County Board of Education is, of course, the largest employer with 3,650 employees. And so it is fitting that the schools would get the lion’s share of the budget of just about 50 percent. The budget is $193,889,000, which is a 2.69 increase over FY16. That includes a $5.7M, or 3.2%, increase to Carroll County Public Schools to fund salary increases, including that of  the full time school teacher/commissioner – and, oh – p.s. his wife is also a school teacher with the Carroll County Public Schools.

When the Superintendent of Carroll County Board of Education, Stephen Guthrie, comes before the Carroll County Board of Commissioners he is there as a superior to the school teacher/commissioner (oh and was it mentioned his wife is also a teacher?) The superintendent of schools can rip apart a teaching contract single handedly. And so where does the loyalty of the school teacher lie? Is it with the taxpayers to ensure the money is being spent wisely or is it with his boss whom he and his spouse are subordinates to and whom their income depends. At this point, you might ask, “what difference does it make?”

The ethical and proper thing to do would be for the teach to resign from his job with CCPS or as commissioner to recuse himself from any and all negotiations and votes on issues pertaining to the CCPS. He did neither. Although still an employee with the CCPS as a commissioner, he took the favorable vote for the salary funding increase for teachers and the adoption of the FY 17 budget.

This has been brought to the attention of the Carroll County Ethics commission – appointed by the county commissioners – and the Board of Education Ethics Council. Both have said there is no “incompatibility” with the commissioner also being an employee of the CCPS. It was then brought to the attention of the Maryland Attorney General

AG Opinion July 25, 2016

“On behalf of the Board of Education of Carroll County (“school board”), you have asked for our opinion on two questions that have arisen out of the election of Dennis E. Frazier, a public school employee, to the Board of County Commissioners of Carroll County. Your first question is whether “a county commissioner, who is also a public school employee, may vote on matters impacting the local board of education,” particularly school funding matters. This question does not raise an issue of State law. Instead, county law—specifically, Carroll County’s ethics ordinance—controls County officials’ duties to avoid conflicts of interest. It is our policy not to construe local laws in our opinions, and therefore we offer no opinion on that issue.”

This opinion response to the Board of Education Ethics Agency continues “As you have pointed out, Mr. Frazier’s teaching position does not conflict with the office of commissioner by virtue of subordination to, or supervision by, that office; county governing bodies lack the power to appoint, remove, or supervise school board employees. And while the county commissioners ultimately approve the local school system’s budget and fund it in part, the county commissioners do not set individual teacher salaries.

Mr. Frazier’s two positions thus do not fall under the Hetrich court’s example of a conflict that would create an incompatibility. Addressing a similar issue, the Attorney General of Kansas concluded that the incompatibility doctrine did not bar a local school board employee from serving on the state board of education because the state board did not supervise the employee and did not set either the employee’s salary or the employee’s duties.”

Wait… WHAT?        The court of Appeals has already ruled “The fundamental test of incompatibility at common law is whether there is a present or prospective conflict of interest; as where one office is subordinate to the other or subject to supervision by the other, or where the incumbent of one office has the power to appoint or remove or to set the salary of the other.”

The teacher/commissioner is helping to create a budget and vote upon said matters as a superior to Mr. Guthrie; yet, also as a subordinate based on his employment and therefore creates the conflict of interest and/or the appearance of such conflict because he then goes to the end of the line with his hand out for his salary as an employee of the Carroll County Board of Education.

Yet, the Maryland AG says the ethics commissions are correct and there is no “incompatibility” and zero conflict of interest with the teach being a commissioner. Its reasoning is the teacher/commissioner does not craft the budget, has no input and therefore, simply because he votes for it there is no conflict. Bulldoogle.

The entire county budget is at the hands of the commissioners as they can steal from Paul to pay the teachers. In other words, if the CCPS needs more money they can take it from Open Space projects or whatever area they deem. This process fundamentally suggests a conflict because the commissioner while not creating the Board of Education budget certainly can add to it.

GRASS ROOTS SURVIVAL

These types of situations occur every day. These are the scenarios We the People can work to correct. Currently, we have morally challenged elected officials. We need to elect persons with high moral character. With the amount of responsibility we are entrusting to them, we must demand ethics.

Integrity, ethics, character “it’s what we do when no one else is around.” There was a lady talk show host years ago who talked about dirt on the heels of a women’s shoes. “Can you imagine what their underwear must look like if they don’t care what others are seeing?” she said. I’ve never forgotten it and it pertains to our elected officials as well. If they are going to steal from us right before our eyes, if the unethical behavior is so blatant before our very eyes, we can only imagine how bad it really it is behind the scenes.

Unfortunately, people blindly vote and more often than not for the name, they know. It doesn’t matter what a voting record looks like – heck, most people don’t even know what their local legislators do or how to obtain their voting record. We need to engage. We need to arrive at the local council meetings and see how these crooks spend our tax dollars, take to the microphone, and voice valid objection.

Get in the game. Be proactive because these type of local corrupt and unethical politicians grow up to be bigger corrupt and unethical politicians. Work to nip it in the bud. Our survival starts at the grass roots.

Covering More Ground when Bugging Out

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by Ryan

So it is time to bug out. Something horrible has happened and you need to get away from civilization as quickly as possible. You have plenty of wilderness ahead of you, but you need to move quickly and put miles behind you. The terrain is rough, the rocks are slick, and you may even have people tracking you. How do you move as quickly as possible? Knowledge and preparation are the key to a swift bug out. If you know what to do you can double or even triple your rate of travel.

Bug Out Bags

The most important strategy for any bug out scenario is planning. One aspect of that is packing. Of course you read about bug out bags on every survival site you visit, but the weight of the items you pack is not emphasized nearly enough. When you are travelling long distances, a few pounds make a huge difference in your ability to keep pace. First, you need to buy the right pack. Try to pick something that has an interior frame and waist strap to take weight off of your shoulders. I know from personal experience that sore shoulders and a strained back make it very hard to keep hiking.

Next, focus on the weight of your items. Before you buy each item, shop around online and try to find a version that is lighter but just as functional.  In addition, constantly reevaluate your pack contents. As you become more experienced, you should be able to bring fewer items in your pack reducing its weight.  Also, as time passes technology produces lighter versions of the products in your pack. If enough progress is made, you may want to consider an updated version of a few of your items.

Planning for Your Whole Family

It is also very important that you plan for the group with which you will be travelling. If it will be you, your wife, and your two kids then make sure you do what you can to keep the hiking speed of each person as close as possible. Younger kids should not have anything to carry, while teenagers should have a decent load. Anybody that is injured or has a disability should have nothing to carry and you should do what you can to supply tools to speed their movement. Test out your plan in advance and fine tune it to keep everybody walking at the same swift pace.

A quick departure is important to any bug out situation. You should have a bug out plan with your family and practice it regularly. Keep your bug out bags in the same place and near the door. Modular bug out bags will allow you to make last minute adjustments to the contents of your bag. This can save you a few pounds while still keeping all items you expect to need on your voyage.

Fitness

It may go without saying, but your physical condition will greatly affect the pace at which you can hike. I am not saying that anybody needs to run marathons to spend all day in the gym. However, some level of fitness is a good idea. If you get in some hiking in periodically, it will also help your feet adjust to the abuse. Tough feet, strong legs, and decent endurance will be vital if you need to cover dozens of miles in a bug out scenario.

Routing

Planning a route is also an overlooked aspect of a proper bug out. For some reason people think that they can just walk out their front door and head in any given direction. This typically does not work out. You need to know your area well and have a specific route in mind. If you plan to leave civilization, figure out a direction that gives you mile after mile of wilderness. Then pick a travel route. It should be in an area of cover such as a wooded area or a dry creek bed that dips below the horizon.

You also need to plan a method of navigation. Landmarks are by far the easiest plan to get you where you are going. With proper landmarks, you really need nothing else to navigate. One example would be to find a creek and follow it to your destination. Another would be to follow specific rock formations or distinctive trees. You can also use the sun or a compass to maintain a specific cardinal direction.

General Rules

There are a few general rules for foot travel in the wilderness that will help you move quickly. First, always take the path of least resistance. Many times this will be a dry creek bed or a game trail. Make sure you maintain your desired direction, but these clear areas will allow you to walk without wading through brush or tall grass. Also, on a hillside the best path is about half way up the ridge. Often brush will be thick at the bottom and there will be loose rocks at the top. It also takes more energy to climb to the top of a ridge to travel versus staying on the side.

Pace

When you start walking, pace is very important. The military standard for long distance hiking is three mph for flat terrain, two mph for hilly terrain, and one mph for jagged terrain. Pick a pace based on your terrain and stick to it. If you over exert yourself, your pace will drastically slow after the first few hours. You are also much more likely to injure yourself if you tire out quickly. The most efficient way to travel is a brisk walk. Never run unless somebody is chasing you and is right on your tail.

Staying Safe

Avoiding injury is paramount to a solid bug out pace. If anybody in your group twists an ankle early in your journey, it will destroy the rate at which you travel. Walk slowly enough that you can pay attention to each and every step that you take. Be cautious of your footing and try to avoid loose or wet rocks. Wet leaves are also a hazard to avoid. A walking stick gives you a third point of contact and is a helpful tool if you can find one. Also be cautious not to step near any snakes as you scurry through the forest.  If you have to climb anything steep, slow down and use ropes if possible.

Periodic rest is just as important as a swift pace if you want to travel all day. Always rest based on the weakest link in your group. This will typically be young children, injured people, or those weighed down with heavy packs. If one person gets too winded, it can shut down the whole group for the day. Stop to sit in the shade, drink some water, and get a snack if needed. These little breaks will make a great difference in the distance you travel per day.

Protect your Feet

Another sometimes overlooked variable for travel speed is foot care. Make sure each person that is with you has a pair of boots that fit properly, provide traction, seal out moisture, and offer ankle support. These can be expensive, but they are worth the investment. Everybody should have wool socks if possible. Wool will keep your feet warm even when wet and will hold back moisture better than cotton. Another trick is to put on a pair of panty hose under your socks to reduce friction that could cause blisters.  When you make camp, have everybody dry out their boots and socks near the fire.

Even with proper footwear, it is likely that you will end up with blisters at some point. To treat them sterilize your knife in the fire and cut a slit in each blister. This will keep it open so the fluid will dry. If you have medical tape, tape over the blister until it is callused over. Few things will slow you down more than painful blisters. Also, make sure to keep your toenails trimmed so they do not cause any sores on your toes.

Making Camp

When you stop to make camp, keep it quick and basic. If you need to cover dozens of miles, you do not want to spend four hours on a fancy shelter. Do just what is needed to avoid hypothermia, protect from rain, insulate from the ground, and avoid predators. This will allow you to travel until just before dark and leave at first light. Sleep is important, so make sure you are protected enough to properly rest.

Food and Water

Often searching for food and water can slow people down when bugging out. You really should not take the time to set traps or do any conventional hunting or fishing. Instead be opportunistic and think like a gatherer. Look for nuts, berries, or edible plants as you travel so you can grab a handful and keep going. If you get to a body of water, look for a quick snack instead of going after a big fish. Try to find some crayfish or mussels or even seaweed or kelp. For purifying water, try to avoid taking the time to boil it. Bring a filter with you or bring some iodine tablets that will allow you to purify water while you hike.

Night Travel

As a general rule I never suggest traveling at night in a survival situation. However, if you need to make up some ground and you have lots of artificial lighting it can be an option. You definitely want to stick to a path without obstacles to trip you such as a game path. It is way too easy to step wrong on a rock or slip on loose leaves in the dark. It is also much easier to get lost, so make sure you have a map and compass. I suggest that you know how to navigate by the stars as a backup plan. Do not forget that predators are more active at night. Again, this would only be in a worst case scenario.

Snow Travel

Hiking in the snow and ice is a completely different challenge.  Safety and efficiency become much more important.  If you are walking on lots of ice, be very careful of your footing.  If you have access to crampons to strap to your shoes, that is the safest bet.  Never walk on frozen rivers or lakes unless you are sure of the thickness of the ice.

If you are walking in snow more than a few inches deep, you may be doing some ‘post holing’.  This is when you have to pull your leg out of a hole to take a step and then sink down into the snow as you put your foot down.  This is an efficiency killer and can slow your hike to as little as 10% of your normal pace.  Build some snow shoes to ensure you stay on top of the snow.

Once again I will have a chance to test out all these suggestions in a few weeks.  I am going to complete a long distance challenge in which I have to travel about 30 miles in dense woods with rugged ridges and cliffs. I will be doing all this with a light pack containing only a few items, so I should be travelling at a fast pace. As you can see, having a strategy and being prepared is the key to this pace. Hopefully I will be able to cover the distance quickly and get back to civilization.

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Are the Globalists Winning?

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By Silence Dogood

Whatever you call them, (for there are many names). Some call it the New World order, the Globalist Agenda, the Military Industrial Complex, The Free Masons the Illuminati, ties with the Vatican, or the many families of Bankers, like the Rothschild, Rockefeller, J P Morgan, Warburg Brothers or any of the corporate gangs such as Goldman Sachs, Lehman Brothers, Koch Brothers or just plain corporatism. The question on most critical thinkers minds are whether this Globalist regime is winning their war on humanity.

It seems that they are not.

I say this because we the people are increasingly becoming more knowledgeable of the maniacal and grossly detailed ways of their plans. Methods created to usurp every aspect of our lives. More and more people realize their deceptions and the weaker they become. That is not to say we have defeated them, because like any disease left untreated it has metastasized and spread in other ways. The only true diagnosis is that it is not going away that easily. They appear to be ramping up their efforts to solidify a worldwide plan of dominance over everything.

Lately, they have deployed the classic, slash, and burn method of “all out war” against their opponents that is “us” incase you were wondering, forcing us into a panic mode, and tipping the scales in their favor yet again.

It’s election time in America and the heat is on. It appears they are going ahead with their plans of world dominance despite any of our strong objections. Every detail we see in the news, social media, reveal this new fervor, and as their lies are slowly uncovered it all points to an increasing trend of desperation. Let us hope this is the ringing of their death knell, but I doubt it and I doubt it will come that easily, nothing ever does.

To properly analyze our fight for life, at least on any comparable scale we need to look at it as worldwide issue. The frontline for this war takes the form in many ways. The least of which is the FIAT currency scheme. The global elite’s have controlled world currencies for over a century now, and in some cases longer. They have also managed to fracture our alliances between peaceful countries that could have been easily mended by diplomacy alone. They have destroyed every democratic nation on the planet, converting most to some mutated form of socialist-corporate-fascism, and in doing so prevented the people from these nations in interfering with their diabolical plans of world government, which in hind sight appears to be just a euphemism for Worldwide Domination.

Let me correct myself here, for those of you that find it so hard to believe this is some form “Conspiracy,” by using the true form of the word, meaning to conspire together against a common foe. Perhaps you might be right. So allow me to pull back that last statement, and simply say this. It appears that a small percentage of people using a fairly opportunistic approach to business; who are mainly composed of individuals among the top 1% of the richest and most powerful people on the planet, who do seem to take advantage of our worldwide crisis for their own personal grab for power. Simply put the elite of the elite are using our social systems against us. Lets get clinical here and call it mega power, never before dreamed.

There, I hope that satisfies the extra cautious among you, the non-conspiracy type people. For everyone else, I am sure we can agree that certain people are taking advantage of what is going on in the world today, and in a BIG way.

Where we stand now, and how will they implement this control on our world

1) Creating Crisis:

The number one agenda is War: This is probably the oldest trick on the books. What ever your positions on how these conflicts have started, you have to admit they are happening all around us today. This is undoubtedly the best way to make money off the hardships of others, especially if you are one of the big players in the worldwide game.

The profits made by corporations in this game is staggering, the arms deals, and weapons manufacturing, the privatization of the world’s armies is a very lucrative business nowadays.

Not surprisingly, six of the nine (6 of 9) most profitable weapons manufacturers are located in the United States.

The Number Two Agenda is Money

How they fund these wars…

First you need to have the ability to create the money used to coerce the sensible populous into fighting their wars for them. One way is to pay the people money for their services. However, that would not be very good business sense, would it? Another way is to starve the people first, then offering them excuses to hate the enemy country. Pointing fingers at anything to explain why it is someone else’s fault, you are starving.

Straining diplomatic relations and a hidden Military agenda:

China vs. USA: This is not necessarily truthful.

How about Russia vs. USA: again, are we or have we ever actually been at war with Russia?

The Banking illusions are also used against us, pretending as if we are on the same team or just another form of reverse psychology.

Do the Chinese not own many of our Bonds,  and are the Chinese not among our US allies against ISIS:  and how about this newest development with China and Russia teaming up with the USA to fight ISIS.  Are these other nations being run by the same crowd of sociopaths? Putin believes the Rothschilds are corrupting the Russian banking system and he threatens to nationalize their privately owned banks.

Starvation is a tool: Starving the people; before a war, or a take over is the easiest way to weaken a nation, and effectively motivates people into submitting to an agenda. Take these ongoing crisis in Africa, Venezuela, or Syria for instance, and many other nations now in conflict, and wracked with starvation.

Foreign Influences and manipulation: All of these conflicts are found to be created by outside western forces, initially. The internal national governments certainly were not solely at fault for these nations’ collapses. Even the situation in Libya was obviously created by outside influences.  Absolutely, Kaddafi’s regime, and his subsequent death were the tipping points for sure, but the behind the scenes tug of war was what ultimately set off the down fall, but why?

Now you have a new starving populous ready to fight for anything you can point at, and further exasperated by the vacuum left behind once his tyrannical regime was toppled. Allowing any other third party faction, to move in and become the new “axis of evil” to enter the theatre of war.

Implementing their Plan

Financial Control: So certainly, a centrally controlled money system is ideal, where you can magically print money right out of thin air. This would be best to control these nations and force them into war and into giving up their rights and freedoms. However, you cannot just invade countries like the US of A. Therefore, another tactic must be employed. Perhaps cause an economical depression.

How they bring down the biggest nations: A sudden retraction of liquidity in the US markets works best, and is much cheaper then War, a covert strike using their favorite tool the “fiat money system”; you simply over load any nation with debt, and in this case, the debt is beyond any hope of repayment. Then when all common sense tells you otherwise, you increase the interest rate on that nation’s debt. I promise this will bring any nation’s economy to its knees without firing a shot. This, you do in stages, when you need them to submit to your will. A monetary muscle is being flexed almost every fiscal quarter these days. Media is used to heighten the fear of collapse, and panic ensues and if that is not enough, they manipulate the stock markets, with margin calls and rumors, in a sense “ratting on themselves.”

Play with interest rates: This is my favorite, for months ahead of this fiasco, they beat the drums of finance claiming Financial Armageddon is coming, and then they release the hounds. I predict they will use this coming rate change in the USA as one of the next tactics to get us all on board with their latest New World Order scheme, most likely shifting the public opinion toward one of their electoral candidates.  Like the one favorite saying “never let a crisis go to waste.”

Hiding their plans in Plain Sight: This next fact is straight from the horses mouth here, an article from 2007 on the IMF website regarding how global governance is designed to help us all.

On the other hand, how about this “blatant” website information.  I agree this information is not written in stone, but where there is smoke, there is fire. They are so use to the passive zombie masses that they tell us upfront of their plans.

Using the people to do their dirty work

The Coups: Another very old tool of the regime is the Coup; used very successfully for over a millennium.  These may appear to be organic attempts at an over throw of Government, but very little research is usually require to see beneath these uprisings, and find the true puppet masters behind them that pull their strings.

The majority of Military Coups are designed to tear down a functioning country and install a Military dictatorship controlled by one of the major nations of the western world. Sure, I know what you are thinking, if we are the major nation tearing them down, who cares. Well you have probably heard of the term “Blow Back,” by now  this is why you should care.

Most appeared to be political or military coups, and who usually backs these military groups? You will not be surprise by this fact here, the US is the largest contributor of military aid in the world, but by how much, and how do they do it legally. Our spending on Military ventures throughout the world, is facilitated by the Foreign Military Financing (FMF) program  This is not to say other nations are not equally guilty of enabling these wars.

Who is involved, and where do we begin?

By now, even the faint hearted among you, should be getting a sense of the connections between these Globalists and their Methods of Operations. Therefore, whether these are some form of massive conspiracy or simply opportunist taking advantage of a global crisis this is really a moot point is it not. Are you not tired of the news headlines, the starving people the hardship, and injustice happening in the world? Do you not see the connection between the haves and the never going to have people of this world? It is happening right now, and it shows no signs of letting up anytime soon.

However, the question still remains are they winning, or can they be stopped in time? Add to that query if we can stop them at all, will this mean they have lost, and/or can we relax now we are aware?

You do not really believe we can wait, do you?

War profiteering: For instance, who actually has profited the most from the past wars? Was it the Politicians, the contractors, the Kings and Queens, the military?

Financial profiteering: How about “The Great Depression” did anybody profit during that calamity?

A walk down memory lane: The following names are familiar to us all, they where held up in class when we where children as the success stories of the century. The names like Rothschild, J.P. Morgan, John D. Rockefeller, Warburg, Carnegie and others. Masters of industry, the dealmakers, the men that forged this nation from Wrought Iron, Petroleum and Steel.

Sounds a bit like schoolboy propaganda, does it not?

The truth is nearly the opposite, and most of these men either out right stole their fortunes from the weak and vulnerable, or they created it from braking the backs of the little people they controlled.

Rothschild’s legacy: http://www.investopedia.com/articles/investing/111915/how-rothschild-family-created-their-wealth.asp

J. P. Morgan, history: http://www.pbs.org/wnet/historyofus/web10/features/bio/B14.html

John D. Rockefeller empire: http://www.history.co.uk/biographies/john-d-rockefeller

The Warburg Brothers financed both sides of WW1: http://www.ihr.org/jhr/v15/v15n5p33_weir.html

The real question during those trying times is whether any of these factors or methods that were purposely, invoked back during the depression, can still be done today. Furthermore, would someone use these same tactics against the people now? Lets say, to profit during a perpetual recession or “new age great depression,” and all the while, why not even being revealed by the media as exploitative practices by these elite scoundrels?

Some familiar characters have re-emerge recently:

Rothschild has been indicted for laundering funds.

P. Morgan: Morgan Stanley are accused of fraud and cover up, and public officials are involved, all indict for operating under the color of law: http://www.morganstanleygate.com/2014/05/color-of-law-indictment-filed-against.html The Morgan Stanley relationship is the same manure just in a different pile: https://www.quora.com/Investment-Banks-Whats-the-relationship-between-JP-Morgan-and-Morgan-Stanley

This is rapidly referred as the Morgan Stanley Gate.  http://twsyf.com/

John D. Rockefeller; Originally Standard Oil but is now BP, Chevron, Exxon Mobile, and Conoco Phillips. Why did it get broke up, because even back in the old days we considered this a monopoly? I wonder whom he had to have piss off to get kicked out of that sand box. http://www.nytimes.com/2006/11/05/business/yourmoney/05giffen.html?_r=0

The New Warburg Brothers bank of Hamburg: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-04-20/218-year-old-hamburg-bank-shuns-lenders-and-prepares-for-brexit

Goldman Sachs one of the latest corporate equivalent of a creepy old dude has now entered the scene with there worldwide form of corruption: https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2010/04/pers-a19.html

“Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive… Where’s the coward that would not dare to fight for such a land?”

Two lines from the prophetic Marmion Poem by Sir Walter Scott “A tale of Flodden Field.”

There seems to be many inconstancies around the building of this nation since its beginning. The undeniable ties that America still has with England and the Vatican are oddly apparent. http://www.sinhalanet.net/three-corporations-run-the-world-city-of-london-washington-dc-and-vatican-city Clearly, conspiracy on someone’s part is taking place more often then not. Therefore, can we ever hope to take control of our lives from such megalomaniacs? The world now looks like some old English garden choked with bureaucracy, where the weeds and clinging ivy are twisted around all that was good and buries every past hope with corruption.

So how do we end a century old nightmare?

It is a Worldwide problem: It will require a worldwide solution. First by establishing an international task force to hunt down and confiscate this (our) wealth before anymore is taken from us. This may sound like a NATO or UN type matter, however even these institutions have been infiltrated and corrupted from within by these same entities.

No, I believe that the United States of America is in the best position to begin this new wave of freedom across this planet, leading by example not by force. Perhaps, we can start by cleaning up our own back yard…

Any war tactician knows that to win a war in the long haul, any war, you most often need to weaken your enemy first. Take advantage of their vulnerable fronts, and cut off their supply lines. First step is ending the Federal Reserve and the Central Banks and a great second step is to cut off those supplies and seize their assets. Perhaps the new unconstitutional acts designed by the presidents  (NDAA and the Patriot Act).

Maybe these can actually help us until we rescind them for the in justice that they are on the citizens. Anyway, without income, the elite cannot easily fund a war against us.

A task force must be formed and be impartial too, a consistently independent group of people able to do their jobs unmolested by corruption, which undeniably means NO politicians, NO clergy, NO military can be on the boards of this task force. This is not an easy assignment, by any means. However, I believe it is possible without real violence. Every move they make will be made public for the people.

Having said that, I doubt the task force would have much authority or do any good without a legitimate Militia behind it. I would hope we as a nation could use our own Military Veterans and armed only with our own “Declaration of Independence, the US Constitution and our Bill of Rights”; to enact these new policy changes. I believe a campaign must first begin by distributing a legal petition signed by a majority that gives the task force the right to proceed and is needed to rid the nation of these criminals once and for all. This is what the US Constitution was designed for, and I realize people scoff at this document sometimes, because they are ignorant of law and do not understand how legal documents work. The Constitution is a foundation document, and all other amendments that have been written afterwards are just that, simply add-ons that can be repealed by law as easily as they were added.

This is a consensus by the American people regarding supporting a military coup in the United States. I believe the numbers are changing even more in favor of some action.

I am sure there is still some room in Guantanamo Bay to house the guilty, using our military to guard them until their tribunals. After all, we are talking treason and other various crimes against the people here. Every US soldier that took an oath to defend the US Constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic should respond, so they should be the ones to also back this movement.

The only problem with military coups is that they end up being dictatorships for the elite sometimes.

Everywhere around the world they are using mob mentality to over through governments. This does not appeal to me very much, in some places like the Philippines, Venezuela, and Turkey their latest coup by the people against the rebels is violent and happening right now. However, this is seems to be just another time in history where the people are forced by a corrupt government into revolting.

Having said that it also implies that these same elite scoundrels have not only lived through these coups in the past, but also are managing to get right back in place soon after, and even profiting by them at times. No… I think we need to publicly identify these perpetrators, before hand. I also sort of like the use of playing cards, a trick the US military used to identify Al-Qaeda members during the Afghan and Iraq wars.

In conclusion: Yes the elitist are losing, and yet for once in history lets change the laws, and put them out of our misery, forever ending their slavery over us.

Peace on Earth goodwill to all…

The New World order & the Illuminati are real.

Written by Silence Dogood

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Stay Away from These Poisonous Plants

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by Ryan

Wild edibles are an excellent food source in a survival situation.  In most climates you can find wild edibles year round.  However, eating the wrong plant can make you very sick and can possibly kill you.  Many plants can cause severe diarrhea and vomiting which can lead to dehydration and starvation.  Unfortunately, Mother Nature is bad about placing poisonous look-alike plants right next to the edible ones.

There are a few things you can do to help ensure your safety when eating wild edibles.  The most important rule is to simply avoid any plant you cannot identify.  There are plenty of wild edibles that are easy to identify such as clover and dandelions.  There is no need to take any chances.

Another rule to follow is to cook your wild edibles whenever possible.  Boiling toxic plants will extract some of the toxins into the water.  If you boil and drain plants three times before eating, it will give you a much better chance of staying healthy.

One other strategy is to know what plants to avoid.  As a general rule for berries, black and blue colored berries are the safest bet. White and red berries are poisonous over 50% of the time, but black and blue berries are safe 90% of the time.  With the exception being morels, I avoid all mushrooms.  They are just too hard to identify if you are not an expert.

Keep in mind that the words “poisonous” and “toxic” are relative terms.  People eat plants that can be considered toxic all the time.  Many plants only have a certain part that are poisonous or have to be eaten a certain way.  Some of the plants mentioned in this article are eaten by specific cultures on a daily basis.  However, these plants pose enough risk that they need to be avoided unless you read up on how to prepare them.

There are several other plants that could fool you if you are not careful.   These plants look like food but are far from it.  Please pay special attention to these plants:

carolina horsenettle fruit

Horse Nettle – This plant looks much like a tomato but is highly toxic.  The plump fruit may be tempting, but eat it and you will end up with severe stomach pain along with a slowing of respiration and heartbeat.  Remember that there are no edible tomato-like plants in the wild.

pokeberry

Pokeberries – These juicy blue berries are the exception to the rule.  They look delicious.  In fact, I have come very close to eating them myself but decided to look them up first.  A handful can kill a child and twice that would kill an adult.

poison ivy

Poison Ivy – Most people know that this plant will cause an itchy rash.  It secretes a poisonous oil called Urushiol that can affect the skin even after it has been transferred from the plant.  Get some on your clothes and you can still break out a week later when you are doing the laundry.  In addition, burning wood with poison ivy growing on it can actually get the urushiol in your lungs.  Just remember ‘leaves of three, let it be’. If you get some on your skin, you have about 20 minutes to scrub the area with soap and water before it is too late.

wild cherries

Wild Cherries – Like many fruits, both the leaves and the pits contain cyanide.  There are small amounts in the fruit, but you would have to eat a lot of them to get sick.  I have eaten these several times on survival challenges and have been fine, but do not accidentally swallow the pit.

virginia creeper

Virginia Creeper – This fine slightly resembles poison ivy, but a rash is not the worst this plant can deliver.  It has small purple berries that are strong enough to kill an adult.  The leaves can also give you a rash, so steer clear.

solanum nigrum

Nightshade – This blue colored berry looks very similar to blueberries.  This is part of the reason it is so dangerous.  The berries are highly toxic.  If you see blueberries but that are not growing on a woody plant, leave them alone.

chestnut

Buckeye – This nut resembles a hickory nut, but can be deadly.  The green outer husk makes it look like food, but after removed the shiny nut inside looks very different from a hickory nut.  If you are going after hickory nuts, look for meat more similar to a walnut or pecan.

asian dogwood

Dogwood Berries – The dogwood is very common in the US and can be found in shady areas where the leaves are protected from direct sunlight.  In the spring they bloom white or pink and they produce red berries in the fall.

holly berries

Holly Berries – You probably can identify holly from Christmas decorations, but the red berries need to be avoided.  The spiny leaves of the holly are easy to identify and the berries are firm and brightly colored.

wisteria

Wisteria Seed Pods – Cultivated beans are a great food source, but many wild legumes are toxic.  The see pod of the Wisteria looks like green beans, but do not eat them.  They likely would not kill you, but you would be sick enough to regret the decision.

rhododendron

Rhododendron – This plant is common in landscaping and the leaves look much like bay leaves.  However, you do not want to use these in your cooking.  They smell foul and will contaminate any food with which they are cooked.

Agave

Agave – At first glance you would think this cactus-like plant is edible.  However, it emits a sap that causes skin irritation and consuming it can lead to liver and kidney failure.  The only cactus that is consistently edible is prickly pear cactus, and only in small amounts.

almonds

Bitter Almonds – Avoid eating almonds in the wild.  Many varieties have a substance that the human body converts to cyanide.  Eat enough of these and it will lead to illness and possibly death.

apple seeds

Fruit Seeds/pits – Most fruit you find in the wild has some amount of cyanide in the seeds or pits.  You would need to eat large amounts to cause any problems, but make sure you discard any seeds or pits.

American Bittersweet

photo: pverdonk on Flickr.com

American Bittersweet – This viney plant has orange berries that look edible, but they should be avoided.  Eating them will lead to cramps, diarrhea, and vomiting.

robinia pseudoacacia

Black Locust Seed Pods – These pods look like snap peas and have black seeds inside.  Eating the leaves, bark, or seed pods can lead to blood cell, liver, and kidney damage.

castor beans

Castor Beans – These beans are used to make castor oil, but contain a lethal poison.  These beans have been used in several assassination attempts.  One or two will kill a child and six will kill an adult.  They will cause vomiting, seizures, and eventually death.

melia azedarach

Chinaberries – These yellow berries grow in bundles.  The chinaberry tree spreads aggressively and is considered a nuisance plant in most of the country, mainly because of the danger of it’s berries.

death camas

photo: Tom Hilton on Flickr.com

Death Camas – Native Americans and settlers initially thought that the bulbs of this plant were edible.  They learned their lesson the hard way.  Every part of this plant is highly toxic.

dolls eyes

photo by Distant Hill Gardens on Flickr.com

Doll’s Eye Berries – These berries are white with a black dot on the end.  In addition to being super creepy, they can be fatal.  The berries contain a toxin that shuts down the heart muscle leading to cardiac arrest.

elder berries

Elderberry plant – While the berries of this plant are edible and commonly used in pies or jams, the rest of the plant is bad news.  Eating the leaves will make you mighty sick and eating the root could kill you.

juniper berries

Juniper berries – Also known as a cedar tree, junipers are evergreens that produce a blue or purple berry.  There is much controversy surrounding these berries as some cultures do eat them.  However, large amounts can lead to diarrhea and vomiting.

mayapple

photo by Lindley Ashline on Flickr.com

May Apples – these plants may sound like food, but do not be fooled.  Eating any part of the plant will cause severe stomach pain and vomiting.

moonseeds

photo by Fritz Flohr Reynolds on Flickr.com

Moonseeds – The fruit and leaves of this plant look very much like a grape vine, so be careful.  This plant only has one seed in the fruit whereas grapes have several seeds.

Morning Glory Seeds – These seed will make you sick, but they also cause hallucinations.  If you eat enough, it has a similar effect to LSD.  However, they can be accompanied by cramps, nausea, and hypotension.

pointed chervil Hemlock

Hemlock – This plant greatly resembles wild carrots or parsley.  It has a distinctive sour smell that helps with identification.  Hemlock shuts down the electrical impulses from the brain causing respiratory failure. There are even reports of people dying from eating birds that had previously eaten hemlock. When found near water, this plant produces a white flower that resembles queen ann’s lace.  Even if you survive hemlock poisoning, you will likely have amnesia and tremors for the rest of your life.  It is considered the most poisonous plant in North America.

Wild Potatoes – Mature potatoes are a great food source, but the leaves and stems are dangerous.  The root also contains poison when it is immature, so make sure it has fully developed.  The tops of the plants should start to die off before digging them up.

rosary peas

Rosary Peas – These red berries are often used in making rosaries.  However, they are dangerous even to handle.  There are reports of people pricking their finger will working with the peas and ending up dead.  Only one berry is enough to kill a full grown man.

Here’s How to Test Them…

Any time that you are trying out a wild edible for the first time, you need to ease into it.  Only try one variety at a time so you can determine which plant was the issue if you get sick.  Start by breaking it up and rubbing the juices on the underside of your wrist.  Wait 20 minutes to check for a reaction.  Next, touch a bit to the inside of your lips.  Wait 20 minutes to check again.  Next, chew some up and shove it between your gums and lip.  Wait 20 minutes.  Next, swallow a small amount and wait for any reaction.  At this point you should be safe to eat more, but never eat too much of any one plant.  Even if it is not poisonous, plants can be hard on your stomach if you are not used to eating them.

Final Words

When looking at food choices in a survival situation, your focus needs to be on risk versus reward.  How can you get the most calories possible while expending the fewest calories possible?  However, the risk of getting sick must be factored into that decision.  If you are confident in your identification skills, collecting wild edibles can be the easiest way to a meal by far.  However, if you have any doubt it is probably a bad idea.

If you think you have eaten a poisonous plant, force yourself to vomit immediately.  You can also eat charcoal to help absorb some of the toxins.  Of course, if poison control is an option then make the call or head to the ER.  It’s hard to say how much time you have before you are incapacitated, so do not wait.  If you start to notice symptoms, take action immediately.  I hope that some of this information will be helpful if you ever find yourself in that situation.

Disclaimer

Neither the author nor http://modernsurvivalonline.com/ shall be held liable for any misuse of the information presented in this article. use it at your own risk.

Hitting the Heart of the Political debates in the United States

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by Silence Dogood

These elections skirt the real issues, preferring to discuss things that cannot be resolved or are just talking points aimed at harming the opposition. Most election issues are coming from a political toolbox of nonsense; they are conundrums, and red herrings not what the people really want answered. They are largely hand picked factoid, and moral teasers, made out of issues with a pinch of moral stain, and a mix of Red Herring that is better suited for philosophers or our local government and the judicial system to figure out and not for our Federal Government. They are taking on issues that do not concern them. They are trying to become a dictatorship on purpose.

I admire how current administrations tell us how these think tank issues are the utmost concerns of ever citizens, when clearly they are not. Then, as if by magic, suddenly our local branch governments are asked to make these political issues their utmost priority, and again as if by magic, the over night artificial issues becomes real to us all at the local level too. This is a trick of “Manufactured Consent,” as Noam Chomsky once put it is how modern government policy becomes fact.

The countries’ true problems are ones that are never talked about in public; the most important topics for any nation in trouble is a way of simply shining light on the hidden government within. Starting with one of the biggest issue facing our nation today, which is, ridding the government of any outside foreign influences, and inside corruption? (I have touch more on this in my article “How to truly make America Great again”)

However, most elections are simply sideshow full of rabbits in hats, which are used to divide a nation into easily controllable factions. Using talking points designed to skirt the bigger national problems, like our sovereignty as a nation. These politicians use twisted moral dilemmas to confuse and divide us into smaller, and smaller more manageable groups, arguing amongst ourselves and making our control that much easier for the campaigners.

All elections use these false issues to keep us from getting at the more important questions. We are often to busy fighting amongst our selves, to notice their deceptive talking points. We are being played by these politicians, and their conundrums that even seasoned philosophers avoid and have no concrete solution in the end for them.

Edward Bernays, The Grandfather of Modern Public Relations, and Mass Mind Control

It is really quite clever when you think about it. Using moral questions that are usually written in bold letters on every front-page media outlet, all the while distracting us from the real problems of the nation, a simple black veil of printers ink held across our eyes to hide the truth from us.

Designer lies too, they are hand picked in think tanks, creating issues never to be solved, and frankly are never intended to be resolved. This is the way of dividing the people into smaller, and smaller groups easily controllable groups, we are played all the time like one of those YouTube videos of a cat chasing a laser beam on the carpet, we seem to fall for it every time. I think we the people have become NUMB, and that is exactly how they want us. Fat Dumb and stupid.

Watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat, and knowing your rights.

Quite often, political issues, during Federal elections bob about like a Macy’s Day parade floats, and both should not even be brought up in a Federal Campaign in the first place. Much like the floats the topics are usually over inflated ideas and much smaller then they appear in reality. Both are cumbersome and both full of nothing but gas.

Why do our Federal governments interfere with moral choices of a nation, anyway? They now scream racism everywhere they go, yet do not seem to understand the meaning of the word anymore. They are waving things at us like, Rasism, Gay rights, abortion, and changing marital laws simply to divide us into smaller and smaller, groups… easier to control during an election, which is why they do it, not because of some sense of civic duty.

What about, the big taboo of mixing religion with politics, a huge human rights, and constitutional no-no, I’ll say it is. Yet, it seems to have infiltrated the current debates somehow. What is this, mixing of church and state? Are we now a new wave dictatorship using a religious doctrine, to govern us? (Whatever happened to The Separation of Church and State?) Hell, even that failed concept was struck down, in 1166 by the signing of the “Magna Carta” when it was decided that the two should always remain separate forevermore.

Besides these tactics, they use a ploy of pissing off the moral majority with moral content, and if this doesn’t seem to be work well enough anymore, by getting the required rise out of its electorate. They simply up the anti, like suggesting a rampant rise in Homosexual activities is coming to your world soon, or that mass shootings and Gun crimes are out of control, or the sale of fetal body parts from aborted fetuses is on the rise in the black market. Either way they promise ways to stem this heinous issue, while always reminding us on the national news in big bold letters. Then suddenly it seems to be everywhere we look, a problem that never was, suddenly is…

How odd?

Yet, with a little research, anyone can see that the opposite is usually true. Like the LBGT community only makes up less then 2.8% of the entire world’s population, and that violent crime has actually dropped to its lowest in forty years according to the FBI, and In addition to this, the sale of fetal body parts may have been a little over stated originally, and it is not quite a new epidemic. So relax the “end of days” is not coming just yet.

Educating the Voters

Again, these are moral dilemmas. I am sure “we the people,” can sort these moral issues out for ourselves at the state level, without Presidential interference, this is what are courts systems are for. People seem a bit confused over the duties of the Federal Government too. I believe it is because we are no longer taught government, or law, and business in our schools anymore. It is not the Federal Governments roll to rule the people with an iron fist; anymore then, it is acceptable to give human rights to a corporation making them a legal entity. This is just chipping away, and chipping away a little more of your freedoms with each new Federal Statue, and Bill clarification…

You cannot write laws, giving a person more freedoms that you already have; these new amendments are what restrict our freedoms in the long haul. Every time a new definition of Rights is written down, it merely quantifies the concept, thus binding the courts hands, and forcing them to rule against your inalienable rights by definition. This is why we have Judges, to use the common law system of man, and see the human aspect of the perpetrators act, by seeing the REASON behind the act, and/or the INTENT of the perpetrator at the time of the act. Our forefathers lived through the cumbersome parliamentary system of England and knew when it comes to law, simple is always better; WE DO NOT NEED MORE LAWS.

What, is really going on this election?

  • Licensed Rights: When a government feels it should license something as a privilege; something that use to be an inalienable Right. Then sells it back to you, at a fee. Well… make no mistake about it folks; you are on the proverbial slippery slope, and at the doorsteps of a dictatorship. You doubt this do you?

We the citizens must make up our own minds about certain issues especially of religion, and what rights need to be licensed by our government (Marriage Licenses, Pet licenses, Gun licenses, REALLY). All licenses can be easily done away with, by implementing free certifications, even driving certificates of proficiency, with no fees attached. This is the proper framework of a free government.

There is absolutely no need to charge a fee to a citizen for any license; we are quite capable of running government without extra fees. This is theft as taxes are theft of the nation’s wealth. These issues are for us to decide personally, not for government, and a few men’s policies, and at the very most, they need to be solved by voting at local levels, not handle Federally, or by blanket Federal government dictating how it should be. The Federal Government should not be dictating anything to the people of a republic at all.

Religion, morality, Business practices, Use of local Energy, and state owned property rights should not be controlled by a Federal policy, governing an entire nation. Why, you ask, well if you must know that is the definition of a “monarchy” or in our case a fascist Plutocracy. Moreover, these same elites are bent on a globally controlled government, no longer do they merely want to own a nation.

That is not good enough for them. They want control of world issues between nations, controlling international trade agreements, as in the TPP proposal, or a union group of nations such as the coming new NAFTA agenda. These are new world government ideas that they will hand out our God given rights. Packaged as privileges, and for sale to those who can afford them most, this is slavery. Using taxes and your licensed human rights, as shackles to control you, rights that your fathers fought for, and inherent rights to all men, they are not for sale.

  • Factory Workers: Our failing Education system; I guess tyrants would not want to teach, a proper definition of a dictatorship in our schools. That would interfere with corporate agenda, of creating factory workers for the future and suppressing any wide-eyed critical thinking citizens.

Our Federal Government should be nothing more then a garden arbor, a lattice in which the nation can grow, and blossom, into a strong, and healthy nation. A free government barely should support the boney structure of a nation, and nothing more than then that. A bare bones government will do this, nicely. Certainly not the form of weed control we have now for the nation’s growth. Our Government is not here to control your rights by spraying the people down with legislative Bills miles high, or using Presidential executive orders for some form herbicide to stifle our dissent and ultimately rid the nation of those annoying inalienable human rights in their way.

Politically Correctness is the Desecration of Freedom of Speech

PC speech is really just a covert suppression of free speech.

For the sake of this article, I must Digress for a moment, and qualify some of the coming verbiage. For instance, can those of you PC people out there, please RELAX for a moment, and consider that the words “Woman, Man, Black, or White, Radical Islamic, etc., etc., etc.,” are not magical trigger words of racism or hidden crimes waiting to happen, they are just a WORDs without intent…

Oh and while I am at it, using the term Man still includes Woman in the English language and it always has, as in the old English term “Man” being subdivided into two categories; (wepman and wifman) or (wereman and woman) though some debate the latter, (do your own research).

So, when I am using the term MAN in this article it is not anti-feminist, it is just a word meaning all humans. The phrase Man includes the entire human race (Men and Women), and too many of us writer types like myself still believe it has a certain sense of poetry in its verbiage.

The Party That Never Was: What is a Libertarian, Anyway?

This a good question. Not the party line but a true libertarian is much different then Gary Johnson.

The main beliefs are from our Constitution:

  • As long as a person is not infringing on another human beings rights, they are within their own right to do what ever they please in life, and to be free of harassment by any other.
  • If there is no victim there is, no crime.
  • Inalienable rights cannot be taken nor can they be given by another.
  • Man has the right to property, and cannot be liberated from this property without due process of law.
  • Man has the right to defend him/her self, their loved ones, and their property, by whatever force necessary to subvert the offense.
  • the Rights of all MEN also include the following:
  • the right to self-determination
  • to liberty
  • to due process of law
  • to freedom of movement
  • to freedom of thought
  • to freedom of religion
  • to freedom of expression
  • to peacefully assemble
  • the freedom of association (source)
  • and many more

These are, inalienable rights, and truly, they need not be written down for that same reason. They are inalienable… and the forefathers couldn’t resist.

You can fool all of the people all of the time

It is now, gotten to the point in America, were as long as someone from the government can point to an enemy (of any kind) they can do and say what they want to us, because the media tells everyone of us its okay, and we sop it up like doe eyed Schoolgirls at our first prom. We all know where that can lead.

Remember Pearl Harbor, the Gulf of Tonkin incident, or the Cuban missile crisis where suddenly Cubans were found everywhere one looked, and then the drug epidemic of the seventies, followed by the CIA caught aiding the Contras in selling drugs in America to support an illegal war in Columbia. Then the three strikes your out, policies of the Reagan Administration that ended up fueling the private prison system we have today.

Then the terrorist called Al Qaeda a CIA code name for the files on terrorists, who then turned out to be the CIA funded terror group, ever since the Russian- Afghan Wars. They who then morphed into ISIS and other groups we have today. Its as if they change the name to make it appear things are also changing, whether they are or not.

The recent political campaign has focused on Immigration, and government corruption and suddenly the borders of many countries have flung wide open, with many refugees fleeing troubled nations for their safety, but has also brought many other sorts of other riff raff to their countries. I have no doubt one day we will also find out has been a CIA covert project.

So, what’s next I wonder, as the wheels on the political bus go round and round…

The Enemy Within

Radical Islam: Are Americans or Europeans “really” angry with ALL Muslims, or are we simply angry with our governments that encourage this disconnect from humanity. Are these governments using inequality, and racism to fuel their agenda of more government control, another means to an end. They have been caught funding these crimes and “outright lying” to us about radical Islam. We the alternative media have proven that these governments have been funding terrorist groups (like Al-Qaeda aka ISIS) for many years, even before the Russian-Afghan wars. They have relentlessly pushed this fear of terrorism on us as a “threat” for two decades now. Even though we know it is a lie, they continue with their message, funding and aiding their attacks even. This alone should be a clue to anyone on whether they plan to move their new world order agenda forward or not.·

Just Slight of Hand: Are these current WORLD political issues the root-cause of our troubles in these countries or are they simply used against us during elections, just to distract us from the more pressing concerns?

Funding Terrorism: “They,” your government claims we should give up our rights and freedoms so they can protect us from this manufactured war on terror, and yet… they are caught again and again funding these same armies of terrorists, such as in Syria.

Taxes are theft: Are you (the average citizen) not firmly against corporate tax loopholes that only help Big Business get better tax breaks then you can ever hope to see for yourself? Are we not tired of listening to their dictation of corporate regulations regarding the nations commerce, that we can only surmise are designed as a way of sending our jobs over seas, and at the same time are crushing our economies?

More On Taxes: Or perhaps we the people are simply tired of TAXES all together, the government seems intent on maintaining this out of control spending habit, with more taxes from an equally out of control group of sociopaths, standing at the congressional helm of this Titanic we find ourselves sailing away on, using us as their “Sugar Daddies”. The ship has come in; the American people will not even be able to pay the interest on the nations debt next year. We are in default.

Immigration issues: do we really think that groups of WELL-INTENDED immigrants wanting to become citizens are bad for our nation or its economy? Were we not once ourselves, immigrants, and were our ancestors also considered bad for the nation? Alternatively, are we racist or simply pissed off about the handouts of our tax money to non-citizens, when so many veterans and seniors go unnoticed?

More On immigration Issues: Destroying the Infrastructure, perhaps, we are simply against the obvious Military aged criminals, rapists, and mental defectives that are being purposely allowed in and used as pawns by the administration to help bring down a still functioning system. A system, hanging on by its finger tips, but that stands in the way of those who seek total control over these nations.

Who Started This Middle East Conflict anyway: What government policies, created this mass exodus from the Middle East. Moreover, what nation just started bombing Libya earlier this month of August, and forgot to tell its congress and its own citizens?

Isn’t that illegal?

Living in Fear: We have always been made to live in fear by our past governments. The British are coming 1776, the Germans are coming1914 and 1945, the Japanese are coming 1947, the Russians are coming 1954, someone is always coming to get us… The Cold War, the Cuban Missile Crisis, The Falklands, The Contras, the Oil Crisis 1970s, The energy Crisis 1980s and on, The Market Crash 2008, The Dollar Crash coming to a country near you soon, The next fabricated crisis like an Asteroid is coming, etc., etc., etc.. Do we want to live in fear all the time as other nations do? Nations who are encouraged to inform on each other like some Nazi, Stasi or Big Brother style Government of fascism. Each of us ratting out our neighbors and friends who just want to have a vegetable garden in their front yard, I mean really…

Doesn’t this simply make us more dependent on those Jack-booted thugs that want to control us?

Privacy Issues: Do you want your government standing in your bedroom, telling you what to wear, what to do, and what to think? Is this morality or is this tyranny, if morality is dictated by the government then where does the power to say what goes on between two consenting adults come from?

What type of Government are we today: If you think you would want a socialist, or fusion blend (Capitalist, socialist, and Oligarchy) to make these kinds of decisions for you. Let us examine these coming governments such as Fascism, Islamic sharia law, socialism, and communism or even the current pseudo capitalism and corporatism. Would you be willing, to allow any of these hypothetical governments to choose your wives and daughters clothing for them.

How about having a top down religious government tell you what God to worship, or whether you can chose other religion besides your family religion. Maybe they dictate how you can live your life, under their rule or whom you may speak to. Maybe even decide the person you should marry, or perhaps dictate the career you will follow, and the food that you eat. Then they even dictate what books you can read. Is that a fair and impartial government; a kind of government you want for your children, and your children’s children?

Surveillance of the People: Our current government wants to watch over everyone’s shoulder, every second of everyday, and replay your past movements whenever you pop up as an interest to them. So, if you make a wrong move at least in their bureaucratic minds, they will send you to some re-education camp hidden away in some dark under ground facility, as if you are in one of those 1984 Orwellian, new world order kind of worlds… I think not.

Death to our Constitution: Are we willing to allow our Constitution to die for them? On the other hand, should we use and let this great document do, its voodoo, that it do, so well. Guaranteeing each and everyone’s liberty and ensuring justice for all, by guiding us in the only way that can, guarantee free society. This magnificent document can solve todays problems fairly, and honestly, while taking us in the direction that we started from.

My advice is we can let it work its magic, and mean while ending this madness of government over-reach, or we can end the American experience here and now. The authors of our constitution have already done the legwork for us, it is beautifully written a legal master piece, which will always be pertinent today as it was back those many years before. (It is only bankers and lawyers, which want to rewrite such a perfect instrument.)

Insurance: Don’t even get me started on the nations insurance scam either. Who needs insurance once we take back the court systems, and its over bloated insurance awards as well as the frivolous lawsuits that will be no more. Besides as a truly free citizen, it is your responsibility, and yours alone for of any of your own actions. Insurance unfortunately creates irresponsible citizens that try to get away with harming other people with the scapegoat of insurance laws. No more escaping responsibilities of your own actions, I propose a limiting insurance code written for the nation allowing only extenuating circumstances being covered by insurance claims, and no longer will it be a mandatory requirement for the people to have insurance of any kind. This insurance scam was also part of the money cabal.

Guaranteed Income: It is possible to design a guaranteed income also for all citizens such as Iceland is implementing this year. Where every man woman and child is given a guaranteed income to support himself or herself, thus eliminating the entire welfare system currently in place in the united States. That is over 20 different welfare departments no longer need for the nations welfare, and unemployment insurance gone forever. This will aid in the reduction of property crimes I am sure, by reducing the stress of poverty.

Crime and punishment: Real justice should hold the perpetrator responsible for the crimes. Not insurance companies, or prison systems. If a man steals a car, he should work off the debt of that car and pay it directly to the victim. That is proper justice. No more private prisons and no more allowing of criminals to skirt monetary debts to society, either, whenever possible the criminal’s debt must be paid back to the victim by working off the said debt, within the prison system, or during a probational contingency. Again, this will reduce strain on the tax system, and I bet it will reduce crime also.

These should be the election issues around the world not some factoids used to cloud real issues. End the theft of your rights. End governments selling those same stolen rights back to us as privileges, and as licenses, and end national debates about local issues while you are at it.

Even if you personally do not agree with the choices of your neighbors (Other sovereign citizens) in a free nation if they are not harming anyone there is no crime. If what they make or what they wear, or what they do, or what they say offends you, and as long as it is NOT affecting you or your rights, or anyone else’s around you… Well then, you have to let it go people.

Remember, no victim no crime.

This is what real freedom is all about, this is essential to a free society, in order to maintain a free world, and whether you like it or not these are Inalienable rights for everyone not just you.

Authored by Silence Dogood

How we can Make America Great Again

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by Silence Dogood

 

Let’s Get ‘er Done Mister President

Do you want to know, how the next President can actually make America Great again? It’s not going to be easy but it’s a real solution with some real goals, hang on, here it comes:

What “we the people” really need in America is complete reform. An overhaul if you can picture it, our government right through our financial system. It needs to be like restoring an old Detroit Beauty. Our America is looking like a badly neglected and rusted out old hulk. Picture a 1958 Detroit dream car abused and neglected by people for years, people who just did not care about her. It once was bright and shiny, now derelict. Let’s say it is a 1958 Cadillac with those huge fins and those great curved windows of its day.

Our once powerful nation was once a powerful status symbol, but now just a wreck with a blown engine, broken from misuse and the lack of empathy from its owners. The rusted out rockers, and quarter panels barely hang on, her shocks are shot, the drive train leaks, her rubber is cracked, and the glass is pitted or missing, making it hard to see down the road anymore, and her chrome, her chrome has been stolen by predatory bankers, sorry wrecking yards.

Nevertheless, there is hope, if given the right TLC and giving the job to the right men.

Imagine this is America today, not a pretty sight, is it?

after disaster struck

A complete tear down of this car and country is needed, right to the bare frame, we must sandblast it, refit it with all new parts (People, and government), and her bearings need replacing (the Laws she runs on). She needs her seats recovered (with new Ideas), and new tires (A better government) to help it roll smoothly again, and a fresh new outlook clearly staring down the future through bright new windows. With this, she can be made into a beautiful machine again.

Giving our new America, and just the right paint job, and make over, a brand new engine (the peoples attitude) and custom fit rims (our new government).

Ta-Da… our American dream car… We can do it you know!

I am NOT simply talking about replacing the old engine here with a newer one (like this election promises); this will not do for this American Beauty. It needs a complete overhaul to make it into what it once was, we can be proud to roll this off that assembly line like all those many years ago in 1776. That is what we need again in America today, a revolutionary way of looking at the nation again, a new beginning by taking this opportunity this coming election.

Picture your New America, all shiny and proud again!

new america

Get the picture; we can do it, be that young badass country once again with all the newest innovations, and beginnings that we have been missing. What other nation would not want to look up to us again, and admire the United States of America?

This is How to really make “America great again”

The Bi-partisan System is a Fraud

Will this election solve our problems?

This bi-partisan government is just two sides to the same coin; owned by the same plutocracy, so don’t expect much in the way of change from within.

Lets get real here just for a moment. We have been tiptoeing around accusations of Hillary’s alleged treason and even accusations of murder, her email scandals, and many more crimes for to long now. These crimes have been percolating up from the Clinton’s and Hillary’s campaign since, well, forever. Furthermore, we all know that something happened in Colorado with the super delegate fiasco robbing the nomination from Bernie supporters. Where there is smoke there is fire, but the media keeps telling the people there is nothing going on, and she did nothing wrong. Really…

When there is a democratic shovel full of mud continuously being flung at the Trump Campaign since her running, and she has been using the mainstream media as the shovel thrower and her accusations as the mud yet still she is trying to tip the votes away from Trump. Most of these attempts have backfired on her, and I believe it is because mainly it is due to the simple fact that the she the one insinuating these things is a hypocrite. Moreover, as the saying goes, “People in glass houses, should not throw stones,” or something along those lines.

Her latest mud slinging fiasco is so obvious, and desperate that many voters have walked away from the whole circus in disgust. It is becoming like every other presidential campaign in the recent past, and we all know how they turned out, we lose. We are all simply tired of their lies, and tricks, and I have given up on politicians altogether.

An Honest Politician

Think about it; none of us can even remember the last time any presidential candidate in our lifetime if not in all history, has ever kept their campaign promises after being elected. With the possible exception of Lincoln and JFK, but I will contest even they never finished their terms so we are only giving them the benefit of the doubt.

If Trump does win and he surrounds himself with an administration of honest and like-minded individuals, individuals that reflect the voice of the American people, and they cut out the deadwood entrenched in the bureaucracy. Can he still succeed? Can he weed out, and prosecute all of the government persons past and present (Regardless of a party affiliation) those that are guilty of crimes against the state, including previous living presidents and their administrations. Who are equally guilty of these crimes? At what point in time, will Trump become the greatest president that ever lived, even greater then Washington perhaps.

Trials for these criminal administrators will be conducted in public for the world to see and their crimes such as Treason, Racketeering, and Dereliction of Duty, and the theft of a nation’s money will be heard.

Finally, the new President will be obligated to rid the nation of PRIVATE BANKING forever. Eliminating the “Federal Reserve,” and take back our nations stolen money from those that stole it, charge all of these crooks with theft and imprison them as other nations have, then create in its place an INTEREST-free and Tax-free monetary system. This will be controlled by the people of that nation, and devoid, of THE CRUSHING interest scam, enslaving this nation for well over one hundred years, stealing our sovereign wealth by proxy.

  • Nothing ever changes: Unless Clinton or Trump start talking about getting rid of the Fed, (Federal Reserve) nothing will ever change in this country unless this private institution is removed for good. This must be the world’s priority and ours as well, so unless we are planning to rid ourselves from this “FIAT MONEY” nightmare of debt, we will have accomplished nothing. Furthermore, without creating a new money system for the United States, an interest free, and tax-free money system, a new currency for the people free of all encumbrances, we will continue to be slaves to this fake money and the tyrants that control it.
  • Prosecute the guilty: Again for the pride of the nation, unless these electoral candidates, and actually prosecute members of our government past and present, for crimes against the people, and in doing so, showing the world for that no matter what, we are not going to take this crap anymore. Do this or we have changed nothing.

Many other nations will follow suit I am sure of this. We must include punishing the guilty for treason and turn over these guilty politicians too other countries to face an international tribunal, for such crimes as illegally invading their countries and mass killing of civilians, and other crimes against humanity. Do this one act people, or America we will continue to have these same terrorist problems in our future. Because we created them.

  • No remorse: Right now, these posers, these politicians, these elected officials are not accountable for their actions. It is imperative that we prosecute them for their crimes. These crimes reflect badly on us and the world stage, we must do this one salient act for the World to respect us once again, and hopefully they will follow our lead, and do likewise in their countries, with their guilty politicians.
  • Rebuild our Corrupt Justice System from within: Unless, our newly elected politicians are willing to suspend frivolous laws held on our law books; laws that serve no other purpose, but to generate tariffs against its own citizens. Unconstitutional laws and codes that have no victims, and are used strictly as a revenue and source of income maintaining a corrupt system (or a hidden tax on its citizens), we will never get out from under this kangaroo Justice system in the near future.

The deluge of tyranny imposed by this judicial system is staggering. Including, but not limited to the privately controlled prison network. Stuffed to capacity by ridiculous use of our judicial system using three strikes you are out laws, and the prison contracts that guarantee a 98% capacity by default. We the people of America are now supporting another hidden tax on the nation by supporting the average cost of $168,000 per inmate/ per year, all profits going to a private prison industry, which also uses prisoner labor to profit on the side. Come on people, don’t you get it yet?

This is a gross misuse of justice, and an obscenity, we should be ashamed of ourselves for being duped into this for such a long time, a blatant ruse.

  • Presidential Balls: No, not the formal dress kind: But, a real president that is willing to take back our government for the people, by the people of the people. Tearing it away from those greedy banker thugs, by force if necessary, (creating a better government once again that our forefathers intended for this country to have), or we as a nation will forever suffer from this one sided plutocracy they have created.
  • All Wars are Banker Wars: We must stop these perpetual wars we are in, the warmongers (the Bankers) who have been using our nation’s citizens to fight, and by stealing hard earned tax money from us in our good name. They use a corporately owned, and military run industrial machine that continually gets us into trouble over seas for their own personal profit. Creating these Wars in oil rich nations merely for personal gain, not only costing the lives of middle eastern civilians, but the lives of our own American children the soldiers that fight there for them. They are stealing billions of tax dollars each year from the people of the United States for their evil games.
  • The Myth of the Energy Crisis: Unless we start actually using simple energy technologies, that are blatantly staring us in the face. We will always be under the corporate slavery of the mass energy suppliers, like the oil & gas industry, and the electrical & utility companies, not to mention the strangle hold of big Agriculture, Chemical and Pharmaceutical companies that control the nation though private monopolies endorsed by their corrupt government.

 About this so-called Energy Crisis: I contest that for far less then what our nation spends already on war and utility companies, or infrastructure, and those failing nuclear generator stations that the environmentalists are always bitching over. We, the American people could supply every single home and industry in this country with an individual or community self sufficient, and super-efficient personal, cost free energy generation-system merely by using current technologies that are available to us today. I would certainly agree to use my tax dollars on a free energy project wouldn’t you?

I cannot imagine what our brilliant young minds can come up with using new technologies to build small-scale and cheap energy systems for an entire nation of people. This would allow us to get rid of the nation’s massively unsustainable utility infrastructure and free up nearly a quarter of your paychecks. Not to mention eliminate Black out threats and rate hikes, along with freeing up a quarter of your household incomes.

If only we were allowed to be in a truly free market economy, we could do this. We might even develop energy concepts of such brilliance to end forever the strangle hold our tyrannical Energy companies have on our utility systems around this nation. Lets give our great American ingenuity a chance, and create ideas without government subsidies’ or threats of corporate copyright infringement the frivolous lawsuits used by these criminal cabal to stifle any new ideas. Let us stop backing companies that sit on technologies that could save the nation billions in wasted energy, and encourage these new ideas to come out once and for all as the once proud nation we were.

Answers on How to make America Great Again

We can ask a real President to do this you know, if we actually mean it! Not by lobbyist or corporate favoritism either, that is for sure. First, this new president will need to realize one simple fact (and we the people need to RELEARN this too.),

“WE the people, ARE the sole owners of ALL the resources of this nation”

Not the banks, not the out of control politicians not the Federal Government, not the huge multinational corporations that have squandered our resources out from under us forever. They are, ours, the citizens of the United States, we own it all…

Can you imagine, finally creating a money system that gets tax revenue from the sale of the nations natural resources (Like Alaska does). Further, implemented when our resources are sold to other nations outside of the United States. Moreover, creating revenue from the internal commercial use of these, “our natural resources,” by taxing the commercial profit and commerce gained from the corporate sector and not by taxing the people’s income.

Sounds strange, a system that maintains itself by only taxing commerce and inherent resources, how can this be done?

Here is our way to do it

We would have a Nation that effectively harvests its own resources for its own benefit, as one would pick apples from a tree, continually bearing fruit. Tending it, pruning it, and feeding it, watering it for growth, we can begin to actually protect our renewable resources while using them as a tax base for our country’s revenue and for the benefit of the citizens only.

No more 100% private owned natural resources; out of the control of the people. From now on all natural resources would have a National and State tax associated with them regardless of where they came from in the United States. Also using this rich market of the US people will cost you if you bring resources into the county when you are not a sovereign citizen. The Mines & Minerals, the oil & Gas, Agriculture, Forestry, and international money brought into the country, as investment will be taxed also. Native Corporations would still be the owners of there commodities, as it stands, but all raw resources of the country would have a tax or royalty imposed to support the government and the national and state level. The infrastructures, the government, the social programs will be maintained without taxing the people directly, meaning no more income tax. Taxing for its people; from are our sovereign resources that is your resources, and our resources that are currently being stolen by private industry, sold back to us or exported off shore by corrupt corporations. Our resources leaving the nation by hook or crook and sometimes using simple offshore banking methods, it is happening every minute of everyday and going on for decades now.

These resources are being stolen without the benefit to us without being taxed for the nation; that is taxed for your nation and for us the true owner’s, as it should be. This method of taxes would produce real growth for the country and then that revenue could be rolled back into the State, the country, its citizens, for hospitals, and roads, and schools, and infrastructure. Remember taxes would be far less then they are now, because we got rid of the Federal Reserve, and the FIAT MONEY DEBT. No more supporting foreign owned banks.

Remember my Lemonade Stand example:

Imagine this, taxing the nation’s commodities (Resources), by imposing stiff tariffs on all export of our country’s wealth, in what ever form it takes. The profit leaving this nation will then be taxed, and can generate enough revenue to run the governments and rebuild the failing infrastructure too. We can then stem the tide of lost jobs heading over seas as well with this. This self-sufficient country in the mean while will stop the exodus of jobs over seas, by taxing foreign influences at whatever rate we see fit, because these are our resources being stolen, our nation’s resources, and ultimately that ends foreign theft of jobs and resources.

Sure, you have been told that taxing these foreign companies is going to cost us revenue, and that imposing tariffs against over sea investors will scare them away. To friggin’ bad, we will not need their money after ending the FED, and creating a tax-free currency; do any people actually believe we cannot make a two-dollar T-shirt here in America? Besides if, you were paying attention I said we are getting rid of income tax and the Federal Reserve. This means no more national debts, and at least 40% more liquidity in the US market will be freed up. Therefore, T-shirts could be $12 a piece, and no one would care, if you had 40 % more money in your pockets to spend, and imagine if the Energy monopoly has been cured too. This form of economy will determine the true free market value of goods. We will no longer need to regulate the market any other way.

So, this is what I propose we do; no more, middlemen stealing resources from our nations coffers. Ending the term “Global Economy” what is simply a business phrase used by Bankers who have taken advantage of an artificial vacuum they have created in a nations resources, and stealing resources from somewhere else to sell to them.

Let us say, nation “A” asks nation “B” for some resource it needs. This is currently being done by the IMF and Central Banking system insisting that Nation “B” who has been supplied with an IMF loan and is now in default, must sell said resources to nation “A” at a reduced price dictated by the IMF or CFR or whom ever. Usually, this is when the IMF imposes a strict repayment policy on the loan of some third world infrastructure they help build that the nation did not need in the first place. So, nation “B”, suffers and/or the CFR, using The Central Banking Cartel money pressures it into the deal and does so by some back room shuffling with both nation “A” and “B” stealing any other resource thrown into the mix as loan collateral. This is done out of public sight, and usually outside of international laws too, and using financial markets without the public ever knowing what is up. Then the acting third party middleman Wall Street Traders skim the profit with prior knowledge called insider trading getting nothing but cream from the transaction.

In layman’s terms: This is when Billy owes Joey 30 bucks, and Joey tells Billy that he must pay up or else. So Joey makes a deal with Billy, you know because he wants to help out, and he knows someone that will buy Billy’s baseball glove for $20 bucks, and he takes Billy’s glove, sells it to Sammy for $15 bucks, and keeps the difference. All the while Billy still owes Joey the $30 bucks plus accruing interest, and Billy hasn’t even made an interest payment yet either. Only the Globalist usually are dealing with Diamonds and Cotton from Africa, Oil from the Middle East, guns from anywhere and everywhere, and cheap labor from China or India instead of Billy’s ball glove. See, not so hard to understand, it is as simple as a lemonade stand. This isn’t called LOAN SHARKING when nations do it to each other either, only when you little people try and cut in on their business.

In addition to this new world shell game, we have the middlemen from our past, using the international clearinghouses, and export loopholes. Now armed with their newly found power they have now re-acquired these markets, and are killing the nations of this world today, but the Central Bankers love it, it’s a yard sale of natural resources out there.

Your Recourse

Not all is lost, we Americans have some recourse through the Constitution, if the President fails his duties; our recourse is already in place. It is the US Constitution, and the Bill of Rights, because these are the nation’s true safety valves against tyranny, we can use these tools to free the nation and save its National Treasures (the nation’s Resources). These magnificent documents (US Constitution, and the Bill of Rights) give the people the power to succeed, against any tyrants. If we only grab back our government now before it is to late, so do not hesitate any longer; we can win back this country, and faster then you might think too.

What many do not understand because we are told the IMF, and the World Central Banks are an American run institution. They are not… they are controlled by individuals outside of any government, and are bent on controlling the world markets globally. These Bankers and their minion are not beholding to any nation but their own greed for power. Even money isn’t their objective, power is, power over everything, and everyone. They simply use money to get it.

What’s Next

After ridding our system from this debt and these bankers, our natural resources are to be taxed as we see fit, and by taxing these resources, we can support ourselves without borrowing money from a privately controlled bank. We can create the money ourselves using resource backed national currencies. We get rid of the Federal Reserve, and default on their fraudulent debt.

We will live far better then anyone in the past two hundred and forty years has ever dream of, for instance taxing our resources we can glean the true wealth of this nation as promised by our forefathers. We can roll the benefits back into building a better Cadillac or Nation if you prefer, without a Federal Reserve Bank, and their debt based economy.

This taxation scheme alone may not eliminate sovereign taxes all together, and right away, but if we can include commercial sales tax for the use of these resources within the nation or without. We can eliminate income tax all together for the people. There will be tax revenue enough by gleaning all we need from the internal commercial use and profit of these resources by foreign investors and its corporate citizens. Commerce in this new nation will flourish, because of benefits of a reduced tax burden on its citizens, and these home based (Local or National) corporations will be cut even a bigger tax break as long as they are solely operating within the nation. Local companies will also be considered a National Treasure by this new government. Thanking them for supplying American jobs and their products to the nation, and only taxing on their profits at the time of sale of their wares or services. Guaranteeing real business growth on profits only, meaning less up front costs to any start up companies.

National growth will come from also using tax money gleaned through foreign investment into this new and rich country, your country the profits will be taxed heavier on any money coming from foreign venture capitalists outside of the country, and only American citizen that own companies will have better tax breaks, not the foreign owned business, and there owners. All off shore loopholes will be closed. Actually, there will be no longer any need for off shore banking, as the cheapest place for American money will be here in America again, we will become our own off shore haven.

Get Rid of Income Tax

Can this really be done?

Money out of Thin Air: First of all, we can easily run this nation with the resource and assets we have available to us, and without imposing personal income tax on its resident citizens (i.e. income tax). First as stated earlier, we do this by eliminating the Federal Reserve. (This is paramount to taking back the country) It is an illegal privately owned FIAT Money System of debt and taxes without representation; and any contract that is without consideration is not a binding contract. We do not owe these crooks anything anymore; their so-called interest on that borrowed money (National Debt) is a fraudulent banking scam and not a legitimate contract. Simply put, without a true “consideration” on their part as in any legally binding contract agreement, it will not be considered a binding agreement to the parties involved. Furthermore, simply because we have been fooled by these crooks for over one hundred years now; does not mean they have a set precedent either. Fraud is Fraud. They owe all of that interest back to the victims (The citizens of the United States). That is right one hundred years of interest payments is due the American people.

Here is proof of non-binding contract regarding the lack of consideration on their part. It cost The Federal Reserve Bank nothing at all to create “money” creating it out of thin air, and therefore this does not meet the criteria of consideration in a binding contract. This lack of consideration on the part of the Federal Reserve Bank means “no consideration, no contract”; and in the eyes of any court in the land, we owe these bankers nothing. This debt is not real, it’s a fraud perpetrated by the Central Banks of the world. http://www.usdebtclock.org/

More on the private debt scam: They have been extorting money from the American people for well over a hundred years and it is a crime. (Actually it is a crime, under any contract law anywhere, because if one party knowingly takes money from another party with out due consideration they are committing fraud.) Those bankers who are behind this scheme need to be brought to justice, and punished for it too. Confiscating any assets accumulated by ill-gotten gains, i.e. our interest payments for one hundred years.

Furthermore, our nation’s natural resources being abundant enough for the entire nation’s future revenue and growth. After we get rid of these Banking crooks, and their fake debt, we will once again enjoy the fruits of our nation’s labor, like picking apples from a common tree. This proposed resource tax will be implemented on a sliding scale according to renewability of the resource and its end use, and internal commercial use of said resource and will be at a reduced rate for our own citizens’ benefit whether commercially or privately. We share the wealth equally.

So Cheer up Citizen: Once we control the revenue from these resources, and get rid of this crushing fraudulent debt, we will never be treated as slaves by our own government again, and we will never be owned by the controlling Elite ever again either. This current regime has usurped our government by fraudulent banking practices, and our forefathers’ dream, that is your dreams, has been stolen from you. It is time to take those dreams back, and the opportunity is quickly approaching with this coming election.

thomas jefferson quote

Why is, actually eliminating taxes not a bigger issue in politics today?

Because the politicians are in on this scam too, that is how the elitist enslaves you, which is how a corrupt money system works.

Name me any cash rich business with margins as wide as the United States, any that you know of that needs a second income to keep their business afloat. That is what taxing the people of this nation is. A viable business supported by your labor as a second income while the profits are stolen from the back door. We are supporting what is obvious, to any true blue American businessman; a cash rich business; a viable enterprise that is being skimmed of its profits, the courts call this embezzlement. Your government is being controlled by Central Banks, and their minion corporations, embezzling the nation’s wealth, and they have been doing this for over a century now, but not any more if we stand up to this, and use the constitution as it was designed to be used.

You have been duped into using our nation’s labor as a second income to run the business of America while the profits have been stolen by the Federal Reserve of foreign Bankers and the Global Banking system, and by any means possible to bleed the nations dry.

Wake up America, the people could have lived off this residual income from our resources, since our beginning. We are the richest nation in the world, believe it or not.

You still do not think we can live off the revenue of this country’s resources, all right, here is some more to think about.

I propose that anything less than a tax-free nation that is living off the nation’s wealth is theft of the peoples labor and future. This Lack of liquidity currently in the market can be easily circumvented by ending the FED, and exploiting the resources and our nation’s intellectual “know how,” and implementing new renewable energy policies.

So where did all our tax money go before we figured this all out?

Who cares, its all fake anyway, lets prosecute these scoundrels, and move on. We can redistribute all of their ill-gotten gains back to the nation, by confiscating their wealth foreign or domestic and begin again.

Taxation is theft (in any country)

I know I am repeating myself, but I really want to drive home how easy this can be done. We have established that the nation’s interest payment to these crooks at the Federal Reserve is theft, and that the Interest paid is a perpetrated lie used to make you a slave to a corrupt government, this is not a government for the people by the people of the people. Nevertheless, it is a government bent on enslaving you using taxes as shackles and we can use constitutional laws as the keys to these shackles.

We will no longer be slaves to their system, it as simple as that. These fake elections just perpetuate their lies even further, by insinuating that things around us will soon change when they will not. We must force our president into doing our bidding not the other way around. The controllers, the bankers will still be in control, and we will still be enslaved by their fraudulent debt if the President fails us.

To reiterate, if you owned all of the resources of a nation, I am sure any one of you people could easily make enough profit from MARKETTING THOSE RESOURCES to run this nation debt free. Such as adding export, taxes too eliminate the foreign influence over our resources, and you would do much right there. Therefore, as the new President, you would go very far by using the revenue from the nation’s resources for running government, our military, our health care, infrastructure, and pension plans. Even the worst businessperson in history could not fail if they owned all the resources and had no debt payments to build this great business called America again.

Slavery is still Alive and Well in America, and around the world

Money Slavery is still Slavery. Even though the plantation owners have white washed the practice of slavery, by having moved the slaves off their plantation and into subdivisions, and ghettos, it is still slavery. Debt is our shackles, and taxes are the chains. We slave away sometimes working for the company store, nearly half the year before we pay the new slave owners enough to keep some scraps for ourselves.

You doubt a tax-free nation is possible do you. Imagine keeping every dime you ever earned for you and your family.

The Future is yours:

A tax-free money system is not a new idea: During President Lincoln’s time, he tried to implement a new interest free money system, for he wanted a tax free money and he called it the green back. Here are the rumblings of the foreign banker elitist of that time; a Europe newspaper article, owned by the bankers of London who were in power then as they are now.

Excerpts because of Lincoln from the London Times 1865 regarding his new interest free money policy:

“If this mischievous financial policy, which has its origin in North America, shall become endurated down to a fixture, then that Government will furnish its own money without cost. It will pay off debts and be without debt. It will have all the money necessary to carry on its commerce. It will become prosperous without precedent in the history of the world. The brains, and wealth of all countries will go to North America. That country must be destroyed or it will destroy every monarchy on the globe.”

 

Now do you believe how powerful this would be?

For the Layperson, allow me use my famous Lemonade stand scenario again here if I may. If you owned a lemonade stand (A troubled Nation) called America, and it was the only Lemonade Stand allowed to operate in that neighborhood (The United States). You (the Citizens) owned the stand and all the lemons, and all the water, and all the sugar, and anyone outside of your neighborhood had to pay extra to enjoy your World famous Lemonade. I suspect that any one of you could imagine this. You would not only allow a break in the price of Lemonade to everyone in your neighborhood (the Citizens), but you could also sell it cheaper then anyone else too, no more foreign competition.

This cheap lemonade would also allow your neighbors (the Citizens) to have more spending money in their pockets (That is called Liquidity in the Market). We all would enjoy the benefits of this fine lemonade stand, and the other businesses would benefit from all that extra money being spent in their stores too. You (the Citizens) are the president of this neighborhood’s lemonade stand so you could probably parlay the excess lemon resources into more money for the neighborhood too, perhaps adding a new homemade fudge brownie product for the people (the Citizens) if you wanted. I am sure you (the Citizens) could simply sell the extra lemons outside of the neighborhood to other neighborhoods, to help free up even more of your neighbors (the Citizens) financial burden, and thus growing the neighborhood (The United States), and the GNP even bigger. This system would allow there to be no debt hanging over neighbors’ heads anymore, like in that dark past when neighborhood bullies controlled the money. Maybe a new neighborhood president could commercially franchise the lemonade stands, throughout the entire neighborhood, allowing its neighbors (the Citizens) to directly profit from the new wealth of their renewable resource, the lemon trees (Allow free Commerce). As long as the profit from these other stands was taxed and used to promote better neighborhood upkeep, like the planting of more Lemon trees along the boulevards, and larger sugar cane fields, and a neighborhood water pump for better community and health.

No, I am not talking about socialism either, so relax. Remember the government is simply the lattice we grow on, not the weed control as it is now. This is how to manage resources of one of the richest nations in the world, and by using those same riches, simply to help the owners (the Citizens) to live freer, and better then ever before.

So why are we failing today at this basic business premise today?

Simply put, we are being lied to, everyday and in every way_ that is why. You are a citizen of one of the richest nations on earth, so start acting like it.

What Donald Trump needs to do, to be elected President that is? Is first stop election fraud, and then implement these ideas once he is in power. However, will he?

His first obligation to the people is to get elected this is done by ensuring a fair voting system is in place before the election, and then we can VOTE for whomever will give us the best opportunity to free this nation from these tyrants that are controlling our government now. Otherwise, the only other option left to us, the people, is nothing short of using the constitution to tear down these corrupt administrations, as so many famous intellectuals have noted from our past.

John Fitzgerald Kennedy

john f kennedy quote

Ask yourself this: will any of these candidates Clinton or Trump use their position; (if they make it into the Whitehouse) to take back the power from those who currently control it and reinstate the United States to its former glory, a true republic that we can be proud of. The one our founding fathers envisioned for this country. The one that our fathers fought for in those past wars…

On the other hand, will these candidates continue to use the same old system that we are under the control of now? Allowing, these tyrants of the old world-banking families, to use this nation as modern form of slave plantation. It does not matter what color you are, or what race or creed, we are all slaves to the Fiat Money System. We citizens of the United States are caught inside their system today, they designed it over the decades, since 1913 when the Federal Reserve was established, and it does not resemble the original vision of a free nation guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States.

Interest free money creates liquidity in the market

The more money available to an economy; the more liquidity in the system, and the more wealth, and jobs to go with it, this is how to create a truly healthy economy

What are the chances you can suppose anyone of these candidates can make these reforms?

Who knows, but if WE CAN FINALLY BEGIN this change in our government we might be able to change this cluster flux, once and for all, and create real change for this nation.

Reintroduce a government for the people by the people, and of the people, a government that all of us could stand behind again with pride.

Dare to Dream…

Power to the people… from the practical prepper

Authored by Silence Dogood

 

Why You Should Be Prepping… No Matter Who Gets Elected

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by Ryan

The most heated topic of discussion right now is the upcoming election for president.   The general consensus is that neither candidate is ideal.  Neither candidate has the true support of their party or the support of the public. No matter who is elected, expect chaos when the winner is announced.  Whether you are pro-Hilary or pro-Trump, please keep prepping.  There are dozens of reasons why we could face a SHTF scenario no matter who is running the country.

One of the biggest reasons preppers prep is because of the actions that our government may take.  Their actions could set off a chain reaction leading to EMP blasts, nuclear war, economic collapse, mainland invasions, terrorist attacks, civil unrest, and martial law.  Any of these scenarios could require you and your family to board the windows or head for the hills.  That being said, one of the largest influences on government actions are the directives of the Oval Office.

Hillary

We will first look at Hilary Clinton, her past, her stance on the issues, and how she could affect us as citizens.  The first concern we need to address is her track record of horrible recommendations during Bill Clinton’s presidency.  She was placed in charge of making recommendations for the Attorney General.  Her first two suggestions were forced to remove their names from the list of potential candidates and her third suggestions was Janet Reno.

Janet was what Bill called “my worst mistake”, and she was in charge of the decisions leading to the massacre in Waco Texas.  Hillary made suggestions for the head of the Treasury Department, Justice Department, White House Staff, Director of White House security, and Civil Rights Commission. These individuals were forced to resign, sent to prison, investigated for improper access of FBI files, and forced to withdraw.  These are just the decisions she influenced as the wife of the president.  Imagine what would happen if she was in charge of appointing those that run our military or influence our economy.

Perhaps a more concerning issue is her nonchalant attitude regarding the law and the handling of sensitive information.  The most discussed examples of this are her email scandal and the Benghazi attack.  If you are not informed, Hillary was accused of using separate email servers so she could be selective about which emails to turn over to the justice department.  She was also accused of deleting emails with sensitive information.  As for Benghazi, she is accused of risking the lives of US soldiers my misreporting the nature of the attack on the US embassy in Benghazi.

However, there are several examples with which you may not be familiar.  During a television interview she was given a classified message regarding the capture or death of Gadhafi.  She felt it appropriate to joke about this classified information on the air.  She also retaliated against several members of the US Travel Office when they would not approve one of her requests. She had three members fired and arrested.

None of the men were convicted, but they were still out of a job.  Probably the oldest example is a quote from her days as a lawyer in 1975.  She had just defended a man she called a child rapist and had him acquitted.  She was joking about it and seemed happy knowing the individual she identified as a rapist was being set free.  Hillary seems to have no regard for the legal system or proper behavior for somebody in her position.

Hilary is also pushing to control or eliminate our right to bear arms.  She has made it clear that she will appoint Supreme Court Justices that will enforce all-out gun bans.  In addition, she has advocated an extreme tax on gun purchases, an expensive and overly sensitive application process, and the ability for gun sellers and manufacturers to be liable in the case their weapons are used to kill someone.  This would be like suing a car company for traffic deaths or a fast food chain for heart disease.  She obviously has extreme views on the subject.

It is obvious that Hillary will do what is needed to get her way.  She will manipulate the system without batting an eye.  Between her poor judgement of character and her deceptive nature, Hillary’s election could equate to a SHTF scenario quickly.

She would be the type of president that may manipulate the military to control US citizens or to act in other countries on her behalf.  She may also appoint individuals to positions in the military or financial sectors that are not capable of doing their jobs.  This could result in a cold war with Russia, a US financial collapse, or WWIII.  With her stance on the 2nd amendment, we would likely have no firearms with which to defend ourselves if martial law was implemented or if she drew an attack on the US from other countries.  There are plenty of reasons to keep prepping if Hillary is elected.

Trump

Next, we can discuss Donald Trump, his history, and his general nature.  Trump is confrontational in every sense of the word.  He has a track record of making statements that put other countries on high alert. Trump has no sense of diplomacy and has made many enemies.  These enemies in turn become enemies of the United States.  Despite the image of a successful business man, he has also had his struggles.  He ran three separate business into bankruptcy during his career.  Trump also seems to be a bit too open to the option of using nuclear weapons.  He could just as easily put us in a SHTF situation.

The interesting thing about analyzing Trump is that it is difficult to look at the facts.  He has never been a politician before, so we have no political track record to review.  Because of that, we have to look at what he has done as a businessman and what he has done during the presidential race.  It ends up forcing us to compare apples to oranges, but there are some cues as to how he would run our country.

We can first look at his track record as a businessman.  He has overall been very successful and has generated billions of dollars in profit.  However, there are a few facts we cannot overlook.  First, he is not the conventional American dream story.  He inherited much of his wealth from his father.  He has managed to run successful businesses and the net effect has been impressive, but he has also had several ventures fail.  There have been three major business that were driven into bankruptcy, and several small business he had to abandon.  Also, he has proven that he will do whatever he feels is necessary to be successful.  This includes forcing people out of their homes to build his businesses, going against his general principles to save money, and badmouthing anybody in his path.

Next, we have to look at his overall personality and views. This may be the biggest issue with Donald Trump.  He has made it clear that he does not support minorities.  This could easily lead to civil unrest and even civil war if he applies those opinions to policy.  He has a hot temper and very little knowledge of policy, so the diplomatic process with other countries could be sketchy at best.

Trump has made it clear that he is anti-Israel, anti-Mexico, and anti-Russia.  Voicing those opinions publically could lead to the next world war.  He has the tendency to make promises he cannot keep and has no filter between his mind and his mouth.  Not only could Trump be a diplomatic nightmare, but he could cause us to lose the respect of our allies.  He has even been quoted as stating that he would consider using nuclear weapons on Mexico, Russia, and even our Western European allies if he felt it necessary.  His instability is a major concern.

From this we can look at what Trump might do with our country.  While there is a good chance that he could improve our economy, he is also proposing some very risky moves that could drive us into the next great depression.  Trump is proposing massive import taxes that could ruin our economic relations with countries like China. If his moves in the White House represent his views, there could be rioting to the point that martial law is implemented.  Probably the most likely concern is that he could destroy relations with other countries and push us into a war in which we need not be.  Despite no political record of making huge mistakes like Hillary, Trump still poses a major threat.

So let us review.  Both candidates have made shady deals.  Both candidates could destroy our relations with other countries, either directly or indirectly.  Both candidates could take action that would destroy our economy, and in turn the world economy.  Both candidates have made promises they cannot keep and statements that are not true.  I think it is fair to say that either candidate could cause everything to fall apart.

However, perhaps the greatest reason to keep prepping is that the election is only a small part of the reason why we prep.  Sure there are several scenarios where politics could cause us all to head for our bunkers, but let us not forget that Mother Nature is just as likely to rip apart our society.  There are several ways that natural disasters could send us back to the dark ages.

With increased seismic activity in the last few years, it is only a matter of time before the San Andreas and New Madrid faults produce a major earthquake.  It is impossible to predict earthquakes, but there are some clues that help us determine where and when quakes might happen.  If we look that the location of recent systemic activity, it shows us that a large earthquake in the US could very well happen in the near future.  A large San Andreas quake would wipe out the west coast and displace millions of people.  The last time the New Madrid fault produced a major quake, it reversed the flow of the Mississippi.  Because of the nature of the bedrock in the Midwest, a New Madrid quake could be felt all across the US.  Recently there have been some minor quakes along this fault for the first time in years.  In addition, the US government has publicly posted seismic activity for the last several decades.  Recently they have taken down this information.  One can only assume that their intention is to avoid a panic based on the increase in activity.

Volcanoes could also be devastating in the next few years.  The last major eruption in the mainland US was Mt. Saint Helen, so people may have started to assume that volcanic activity is not a major threat.  Think again.  Scientists have found recent activity in the Yellowstone Caldera.  This is a vast volcanic field spanning hundreds of miles and centered below Yellowstone National Park.

Recently we have seen new steam spouts popping up in the area and have even seen rivers changing color from the sulfur being spewed into the water.  These are indicators that there is new movement below the service.  An eruption of the Caldera could destroy the entire US Northwest and dump 12” of ash across everything east of the Mississippi river.  An eruption could be caused by a San Andreas quake or it could happen on its own.  Predictions are that an eruption will happen in the next few decades, and it would be devastating.

Tsunamis and tidal waves could wipe out our coastal areas.  Seismic activity in recent years has caused an increase in tsunamis around the world.  These events have wiped out several countries and killed hundreds of thousands of people.  It is feasible that one of these could hit our east or west coast and destroy thousands of miles of coastline. Tidal waves are caused by large chunks of land falling into the ocean displacing massive amounts of water, and they are just as deadly as tsunamis.  In some cases the waves are significantly larger.  There are several places around the world where large chunks of rock are hanging by a thread such as the Canary Islands.  With recent seismic activity, it would be very possible for these rocks to fall and create waves several hundred feet tall that would batter our coastline.  Both tsunamis and tidal waves are both very possible scenarios.

Of course there are the more common natural disasters that we have almost gotten used to that could strike any given city at any time.  Hurricanes have been increasing in frequency and strength and have thrashed the US in the last few years.  Hurricane Katrina and hurricane Sandy both did billions of dollars of damage to the areas they hit.  If you live on the east or gulf coasts, plan for this scenario to happen again.

Think you are safe because you live away from the coast? Think again.  Tornados have increased in frequency and strength and are flattening entire cities on a regular basis.  The deadly tornado in Joplin, MO a few years back hit way too close to home for me.  Flooding has also become a major issue and anybody close to a river has the potential for this issue.  Weather patterns are just becoming harder to predict.

Wildfires are burning constantly in several parts of the country and are driving people to evacuate their homes.  The recent wildfire in Canada reminded us all of the devastating force that is possible.  Drought conditions continue across much of the US are causing crops to fail and farmers to go bankrupt.  FEMA recently ran drills to determine the effects of a 10 year food shortage which they predict starting in the next few years.  No matter which way you turn, Mother Nature has a way to make SHTF.

Even diseases seem to be spreading more rapidly.  We can all think of examples of diseases that have consumed several parts of the world.  More and more we struggle to come up with vaccines and treatment for these diseases.  With the recent Zika outbreak, it reminds us that these illness can make it to mainland United States.  It would only take a few mutations for these bacteria and viruses to spread around the world and kill millions of people.

The point is, no matter what happens we do not stop prepping.  We live in dangerous times and the likelihood of a major event causing us to be forced into survival mode continues to increase.  If your purpose as a prepper is to be prepared, then be prepared for anything.  Focus on skills that can help you in any of these scenarios.  Stash supplies that could save your life no matter what causes the disaster. Nobody can predict what will happen in the future, but that is really the whole point.  Just be ready for whatever may come our way.

 

Preparing Your Home for a Fire

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by Shannon

Every day, hundreds of homes burn to the ground. We hear it on the news channel and read it on the newspapers. The report usually comes with what caused the fire, who got injured and how long it took for the firemen to subdue the flames. House fires and wildfires can cause a ton of damages including the loss of everything you’ve worked hard for and in worse case scenarios, the loss of a loved one.

Being aware of the possibility that it can happen to your home is the first step in being prepared for the worst that can happen. The next step is to make sure that you have the basic knowledge that will help you make your home a place where you can escape if a fire does break out.

IDENTIFYING FIRE HAZARDS IN YOUR HOME

For some people, the most important step in being prepared for a house fire is to install smoke alarms and detectors. However, the flaw in this plan is that not everyone can afford the necessary equipment. Thus, the first logical step that can apply to any kind of shelter, from houses to apartment complexes, is to identify the hazards that can spread the fire faster that you can escape. These hazards include:

  • Curtains
  • Clothes
  • Bedsheets and pillow cases
  • Gasoline
  • Oil
  • Plants
  • Wood
  • Papers
  • Appliances
  • Flammable chemicals

Once you’ve identified that things that can easily catch on fire, place them at least three feet away from anything that generates heat including stoves, space heaters, fireplaces and outdoor grills. The farther the better. After identifying the hazards, some guidelines will have to be observed. This is to ensure that the fire will not start because of your own mistake.

  1. Never forget to turn off the gasoline after you’re done cooking. A simple spark can burn down the house because the gas is left open.
  2. Do not smoke on your bed. If the embers touch your sheets, a fire can start.
  3. Every time you leave the house, unplug your appliances to prevent accidental sparks. You will also have to unplug them when you experience brownouts and blackouts. Remember that a sudden surge of electricity can cause an explosion.
  4. Do not simply leave and wait for firewood and coal to die after use. It only takes the wind to start up the fire again and spread it.
  5. Talk to your children and family members about the dangers of lighting matches and using lighters inside your home.

While these guidelines may seem like common sense, not everyone in your house may not be aware of the horrors that fire can cause. It’s always better to be safe than sorry,

INVEST IN SMOKE DETECTORS AND ALARMS

The most dangerous thing about a house fire is the fact that it can happen in the dead of the night when everyone is asleep. Before you’re even aware of the peril you’re in, it might be too late. Thus, it would be wise to invest on smoke detectors and alarms. Include it in your budget when building your own house or make sure that it’s in your checklist when you’re looking to move into a new house.

Acquiring smoke detectors and alarms is not the last step in preparing for a house fire. It is a common mistake to assume that smoke detectors have a life-long battery and they become complacent. To remedy this, here are a few reminders and guidelines for smoke detectors and alarms.

  1. Make sure that there are smoke alarms on every level of your home. Having only one in your ground floor is not enough to ensure that it will go off the moment that a fire starts in the upper levels.
  2. Place a smoke detector in every bedroom, outside in the halls and every entryway.
  3. The batteries don’t last forever. Remember to check if it works every month. If it fails to work, replace the batteries as it should be changed every six months.
  4. Always have spare batteries so as to avoid putting off changing it.
  5. Most smoke detectors will have to be replaced every ten years. Check the replacement details of your smoke detectors with the manufacturer.
  6. Smoke detectors stop working if they accumulate debris. Do not put them in air ducts and make sure that you place them five to six inches away from the wall.
  7. Everyone in the house should be aware of how a smoke alarm sounds and what to do after so as to avoid panic.
  8. Don’t forget to put a smoke detector in your basement and in the attic.

If you have extra funds available, it would also be a great idea to invest in carbon monoxide alarms because this particular gas kills. Having a carbon monoxide alarm will help you find your way to a location with fresh air.

Another thing that you should have in your home is a fire extinguisher. Keep one within the immediate vicinity of fire prone areas such as the kitchen. Remember that you will have to exercise necessary caution to use it properly and prevent further damage. This means that at least one person in your household should know how to use one. There are conditions that should be met before using a fire extinguisher: the fire is not growing, the fire department has been alerted, the room is not smoke-filled and everyone has managed to escape the burning household. According to Red Cross, in using a fire extinguisher, always remember PASS:

  1. Pull the pin and hold the extinguisher with the nozzle pointing away from you.
  2. Aim low and direct it to the base of the fire.
  3. Squeeze the lever slowly and evenly.
  4. Sweep the nozzle from side to side not up and down.

MAKE A FIRE ESCAPE PLAN

There have been a significant number of fire-related deaths that is not caused by the fire itself. A lack of preparation and awareness caused some people to desperately jump out through the window and straight to their deaths. Knowing what to do in the event of a house fire or even a wildfire helps keep the panic at bay. Make a fire escape plan that is easy enough for the all the inhabitants of your house to follow. Here are a few guidelines for your evacuation plans:

  1. Know your statistics. Find out how prone your area is house fires and wildfires.
  2. Make a Plan A and Plan B. Not everything may go the way you want it to and making a backup could save more lives.
  3. Make sure that your fire escape plan has two exits from every room of your house. Falling structures may block one of those exits. Knowing where to exit in that event will prevent panic.
  4. Take into account the needs of every household member. If you have children or elderly, make sure that your fire escape plan covers what you will do to help them out of the burning house.
  5. If you live in a building or an apartment complex, know all the fire exits and the fire escape plans that the managers designated for each floor.
  6. Ensure that everyone in your home is aware of the plan.
  7. Do a fire drill at least twice a year to make sure that everyone knows what to do in case it happens. It will also help you devise better plans and find better routes.
  8. Include all the contact details of the nearest fire department and emergency hotlines in your escape plan so that at least one family member is guaranteed to reach out to them.
  9. Designate a meeting place. Make sure that it is far enough from the house to avoid casualties in case a blast happens.
  10. Know and be aware of the stop, drop and roll drill for when your clothes are burning.
  11. Keep your fire escape plan updated for every new circumstance (i.e., new family members or house extensions).
  12. Tune in with alerts and news to help guide you to where you need to go and what to do. Often the alerts will let you know of the direction of a wildfire which will keep give you ample time to evacuate.

MANAGE YOUR BACKYARD OR GARDEN

An unkempt backyard or garden can cause a lot of trouble during a house fire or a wildfire. When preparing for those circumstances, do not forget to include the outside of your house. It is a vital area as it is the goal of all your fire escape plans. Anything that can catch on fire within at least 20 meters of your house should be removed or cleaned. Here are the things you have to do in order to keep the outside of your house relatively safe from fire:

  1. Remove any overhead tree branches and leaves that covers the top of your house. You will have to cut them down to make sure that it adheres to the 20-meter distance.
  2. Mow your lawn every time you think the grass is too high. Preferably, you will have to do this at least twice a month.
  3. Pick up dried leaves and fallen branches as these things can quickly catch on fire. During the fall season, you will have to work twice as hard to keep your pathways and garden free of dried leaves and branches.
  4. If you’re into gardening, make sure that your plants are on a considerable distance away from the trees that are already there. Doing this will make sure that the fire will not spread quicker through a continuous line of vegetation.
  5. Make sure that there is a pathway that is free of grass, trees and any form of vegetation. This will function as a fireproof route to outside your house during house fires and wildfires.
  6. Clean your roof and gutters as those are where dried leaves and fallen branches gather. If left unkempt, it might cause your roof to burn faster than any area of the house. This will cause fatal blockages and your fire escape plan will fail.
  7. Do not leave chemicals outside. Store them in an enclosed shed.
  8. Check up on the electrical wires outside or hanging over your house. Do not leave an open wire. Call for assistance to fix it. An open wire can cause explosions which can endanger you and your family even when you managed to get to do your designated meeting place.

BUILD AN EMERGENCY KIT

House fires and wildfires can cause a severe loss of supplies which could endanger your well-being even if you managed to survive the disaster. A supplies kit will help tide you over for a few days or until things have settled and help has arrived. The most important thing to remember about your emergency kit is that it should contain enough supplies to help you last for at least 72 hours. Each person should have an emergency kit stacked in a bag that they can carry easily. Backpacks work great for this as it doesn’t get in the way like a duffel bag does. Here’s a quick checklist of the things your emergency kit should have:

  • Non-perishable food like canned goods
  • Bottled water
  • A means for communication like a fully-charged cellphone
  • Maximum of three sets of clothing (or pack according to how much your bag can carry)
  • Radio to keep you informed and spare batteries
  • First aid kit (bandages, gauze pads, adhesive tape, scissors, tweezers, antiseptic, lubricant, thermometer, non-prescription drugs and cleansing agents)
  • All your spare keys including the ones for your car and house
  • Cash
  • Flashlight
  • Whistle
  • Blanket
  • Copies of important documents such as birth certificates and passports (make sure all the documents are in a waterproof or sealed bag such as a Ziploc, it would also be a good idea to store digital copies of your documents in a flash drive to save space)
  • Special needs
  • Map of the area specifying evacuation routes and emergency shelters

Store your emergency kit in a place that you can easily reach and grab. It can be under your bed or along your escape route. Constantly remind your family members to keep their bags within reach. Help your family members develop a reflex of grabbing the emergency kit through constant practice of your escape plan.

House fires and wildfires are always unexpected. Because of this, an unprepared household will face many difficulties and are prone to panicking. Studies have found that you will have a maximum of two minutes from when you become aware of the fire to get out of your home. After that, you will be exposed to smoke inhalation risks and your chances of survival goes down drastically.

Being prepared is the key to surviving such disasters.

How and to Make a Temporary Shelter

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by Jonathan

If the SHTF and you find yourself in a situation where you are in need of a temporary shelter, what would you use? Sometimes it isn’t possible to rely on a pre-built shelter or dwelling, so you will need to be creative and able to use whatever resources you can. Or, maybe mobility is a necessity so being able to build quick and move is a factor.

In this article we will look at some popular and useful temporary shelter options for a bug-out-bag, prepping or survival situation. A temporary shelter should provide protection from the elements and a home base to gather resources and sleep, and below are examples of this philosophy.

Canvas Shelter

Canvas shelters include tents, poncho and tarp shelters. These are simple, portable and light options that can be built and moved quickly.

Tents

One of the best temporary shelters is a tent. They are portable, simple and light and won’t take up much space in your BOB for modest sized model. If you decide to use a tent, more expensive options can add space for less weight, making a tent and important investment for your bug-out-bag.

One of the best things about a tent is that it can be easily repaired or parted out. If a section tears, some duct tape or stitching can fix it; if a pole snaps a branch or cording can be used; if a section is unusable other parts can be retrofitted in. The rain fly alone has dozens of uses.

Poncho Shelters

A poncho shelter isn’t fancy or comfy, but it will get the job done. It will keep the rain off you while you sleep, the sun off you in the day and add a little bit of warmth. Importantly, it will give you the mental security of having a temporary home base after a relatively simple build.

A poncho shelter has been used in the military for some time as a quick and portable sheltering option. There are a few different ways to make a poncho shelter, but all you need is a large poncho, rope and stake anchors. Tie the rope between two trees and the ends of the poncho onto the rope. The other end is then staked into the ground with the hooded section in the middle. One side will be open, but it’s enough to keep you dry and free of sunburn in a pinch.

Tarp Shelters

A tarp shelter is the next step up from a poncho shelter and looks a little more like a tent. Like the poncho shelter, it won’t offer much in terms of warmth and comfort, but it will keep the rain from soaking you completely and the sun off your back.

To make a tarp shelter all you need is a tarp, cordage and some sticks for stakes. You can also add extra support by building a small a-frame around the tarp.

A tarp shelter is made by tying two cords between trees and hanging the tarp in the middle. From here, drape the tarp over the cord line and use stick to anchor the tarp down. I carry a tarp in my pack that has grommets and use these to anchor the stakes. You can also make small cord loops and tie one end into a grommet and another on the stake.

You can also make an a-frame by putting a straight branch into a y-shaped branch and tying it together. After this, you can attach this to the middle of your tarp shelter to add a bit more stability against the wind. I’ve also seen people use Mylar blankets on the inside of this type of shelter to add a little extra insulation.

Natural Shelter

In a pinch, there are natural shelter options that can be used. Sometimes gear will fail or maybe get separated, so these are good options to keep in mind.

Lean-to Shelters

A lean-to is similar to a tarp shelter but uses branches and leaves instead of tarp and rope. There are two basic types of lean-to, tree-supported and free standing.

As the name suggests, a tree-supported lean-to anchors off of a tree. This means there are less pieces involved in the build, but still the necessity to anchor a second branch into the ground. Between the two supports, a crossbeam is hung and tied, and then branches and leaves are rested and tied onto the crossbeam to make up the “roof” of the lean-to.

The free standing version does not use the support of a tree and has either a square or triangular opening. The square version uses two support branches and a crossbeam while the triangular version uses one branch and support beams making a triangle to the sides. The triangular lean-to is sometimes called an a-frame shelter.

Dug-out Shelter

A dug-out shelter is another military inspired shelter. A dug out shelter can be as simple as digging a hole, reinforcing the walls and adding a roof. The roof can be a tarp or a branches and leaves roof.

While a dug out shelter takes more time to build than a tarp shelter or lean-to, it has added benefits in terms of warmth, protection and size, as it can be as big as time or resources allow. While it is good as a temporary shelter, a dug-out shelter can be added onto make it a longer term option.

Caves and Trees

If you are moving fast and don’t have time to erect a shelter sometimes nature can provide one. Deep caves aren’t always the best option because they can be the home of wild animals, but a shallow cave or rock overhang would work well. Other times, the natural root structure of a fallen tree can be used, just make sure the tree is in stable position.

For natural shelters:

  • Use fallen or hollow trees as a place to sleep.
  • Find an area of dense tree cover to provide an instant canopy of thick leaves and branches.
  • Get inside a shallow cave or under a rock overhang to stay out of the wind and rain.
  • Use boulders or large logs to break the wind or as a “wall” to build a shelter.

Manmade Shelters

In an urban environment, manmade shelters include different options. If evacuating an urban area, a car will most likely be a temporary shelter option, but abandoned houses, industrial complexes and shipping container can also be used.

Shipping Containers

A large shipping container has been used by preppers as a sheltering option for years. Large, sturdy and able to be locked, a shipping container can be a temporary shelter used as you evacuate or move out of an urban area. Because they are used in industry, there is also a chance to find them around abandoned industrial areas.

Cars

Like a tent, a car can be the easiest temporary sheltering option. If you are lost in the woods or attempting to evacuate an urban area, you will likely have access to a car. In a survival situation, a car can be deconstructed and used for lots of different scenarios. If you want mobility though, remember to bring lots of extra fuel!

Cardboard Boxes

This is a sheltering idea where the saying “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure” is literally true. Using cardboard and cardboard boxes is a sheltering option that has been used by the homeless in many urban environments and can be used as a temporary shelter. By building a little foundation and roof and using duct tape or rope cording, a stable and dry shelter can be built.

Look for retail or industrial areas where large boxes will be discarded. Sometimes they can be quite large and thick, meaning they will keep out the elements and retain some heat. In the above video, a prepper built a cardboard house and it survived heavy rains and stayed intact for almost a month.

Dumpsters

It isn’t pretty, but if everything else fails and you’re stuck in an urban environment, a dumpster can do in a pinch. In a survival situation, everything should be considered usable if it it’ll get the job done and allow you to live another day. A dumpster will allow you to stay covered, warm and hidden in the city.

Where to Build a Shelter

Regardless of the situation there are some important factors to consider that pertain to survival. These include:

  • Is the location close to water?
  • Are there wild animals that can attack, sting or bite?
  • Is there a food source of some sort?
  • Are there any natural hazards like cliffs, steep declines, freezing water or dead trees?
  • Is there the possibility of severe weather?
  • Can you orient yourself based on landmarks or location?
  • Try to make a shelter where you aren’t directly on the ground. If nothing else, use pine needles (as an example) to add insulation.
  • Make the shelter as small as possible to limit build time, decrease the chance of failure and increase the amount of heat retention.
  • If you want to be found, build close to a road, landmark or crash site. If you don’t want to be found, go further into the backcountry.

As part of your survival prepping, it’s important to map out areas around you to go to if you need to bug out. It’s important to have a working knowledge of temporary shelters like these listed above because they can be used in either a bug-out or backcountry survival situations.

How to Make Clay for Survival Purposes

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by Megan

When you are faced with a survival situation where you have to bug out, you won’t be able to take all your containers, dishes, and tools with you. There just won’t be room in your backpack. Hopefully, you will have a bug out location already set up where you can store extra containers and tools, etc. But what if you don’t have a bug out location in mind? Or what if something unexpected happens and you end up living in the woods for an extended period of time with just the contents of your bug out bag to get by?

Perhaps a tool that you did bring with you gets broken or needs a repair and you need something to use in the meantime. Although making your own containers and tools out of clay is not something that you can do quickly, at some point you may need to take the time to make some pieces that will just make life a little easier.

What is Clay?

Mainly made up of igneous type rock, the crust of the Earth breaks down naturally to form clay. This breaking down takes millions of years and has been happening since the time of the glaciers. The three main ingredients in clay are silica, alumina, and water.

There are basically two types of clay, primary which remains intact in the place where it was formed and secondary, which is in some way moved from where it was initially formed. Secondary clay typically will have additional things added to it, such as mica, iron, or quartz. Clay can be different colors, depending on the type of soil where it is found. Colors range from white to gray in the damp, cold regions and in the arid, hot areas of the world colors range from brown to a dark reddish-orange.

No matter what color the clay is, it generally acts the same. The great thing about clay is that it is easy to mold by hand. It also becomes very hard or “matures” when it is heated to at least 1200 degrees Fahrenheit. Once clay has been fired to the correct temperature, it is then able to hold water.

Where Can You Find It?

Clay exists all over the planet. It can typically be found in water sources such as ponds or lakes. It can be found near the ocean shore. It’s most commonly found in the rocky, mountainous areas of the world but because the earth shifts, clay particles can be found in just about any region.

Find a place that becomes slippery when it gets wet or near a location where the topsoil has been cleared away for road repairs or some other building project, you will be more likely to find clay. Look for a muddy water where you can see clay along the edges or on the bottom. Test the clay for plasticity by scooping up a small amount and rolling it into a ball in your palm. If you can do that easily, then use the palm of your hand to roll the clay into a long tube. If you can wrap the clay tube around your finger without it cracking, then the clay should be suitable for creating containers.

What Can Clay be Used for?

Clay is basically dirt that is sticky, dense, and heavy. You can use clay to make cups, bowls, utensils, and even tools because once it is properly heated and matured, the clay dishes will be strong. Clay can also be used for construction purposes, such as building or reinforcing your shelter, making an outdoor oven, or a tile floor for your shelter. It can be used as a type of cement to hold other materials together or fill in between materials. It can be used when creating cob, adobe, wattle and daub, and ceramic. It has been used as cement or mortar for brick chimneys and stone walls. Specific uses for clay include:

  • cooking outside over a fire
  • Storing food
  • Collecting and carrying water
  • Use as a glue or cement to make an outdoor oven out of rocks
  • zeer pot refrigeration
  • Mixing medicinal herbs (mortar and pestle style)
  • To sort and organize various objects
  • Sealing off cracks in hand made shelter to help block wind and repel water
  • To mix and hold cleaning solutions
  • Collecting and disposing of waste
  • Making primitive tools for use in a survival situation

Processing to Remove Impurities

Clay must be completely dried out and impurities removed before firing or it will crack and break. Once you dig wet clay, spread it out on a board in the sun for several days and then break it into chunks. Pulverize the dried clay with a large rock or even a large stick with the bark removed. Pick out any items that are not clay such as rocks, sticks, etc. Once you have a dried powder of clay that has all the largest impurities removed, add the powder into a bucket of clean water and let it soak overnight.

Use a piece of very fine mesh screen and pour the wet clay powder through the screen so that it filters down through into another container. Impurities you couldn’t see with your eyes have now been removed. Let this mixture settle so that you can scoop most of the water off the top. The more you filter impurities from your clay, the “purer” it will be and the more likely that your end container will survive the firing process.

Finish the processing as shown in this video:

Wedge the Clay

Once impurities have been removed from your clay, you need to wedge or mix the clay together so that it is in a usable form. Mix the clay powder with water to form a large chunk. Cut and fold the clay together over and over, typically about a dozen times, in order to mix everything together evenly.

Create Clay Slip

Use some of the clay powder and mix it with water to form a soupy mixture of clay called “slip”. You can use the slip as you are making your various pieces of pottery to basically glue the different pieces together and ensure that they will hold together.

Use Temper

Clay “temper” can be made from any pieces of pottery that don’t make it through the firing process. Break up and pulverize broken pieces of pottery into a very fine powder. This will be your “temper” for your next batch of pottery. You will add the pulverized temper powder to your clay during processing. Using “temper” when making your clay increases the strength of the pottery and reduces the likelihood that it will break or crack during the firing process.

Form and Fire Your Pottery

Once you have a clay that has impurities removed and is ready to work with, you need to form your containers or tools and then fire them to make them strong. Whenever possible, make more containers than you need, the firing process can be very tricky and failure rate can be as much as 50%.

The video below demonstrates the entire process from digging and cleaning the clay to forming your pots and firing them:

If you are truly in a primitive situation, here’s a video on how to make a clay skillet and other pottery to use for survival purposes using mainly materials found in the woods.

Tips for Working with Clay

  • Clay that is too sandy or too rocky will be much more difficult to work with and will likely need purer clay added to it in order to make pottery containers.
  • Let clay pottery items sit out in the sun for up to 24 to 48 hours before the firing process. The drier your clay is before the firing process, the more likely that your pottery will survive firing without cracking.
  • Cover your clay items overnight to prevent dew from falling on it and adding moisture back into the clay.
  • Organic matter in your clay (leaves, grass, etc.) will affect the end result.
  • The more filtered or “pure” your clay is, the better it will do during the firing process.
  • Clay can become sticky, so make sure that you have a way to remove the clay from your work surface without too much trouble.
  • When firing your clay objects, make sure that your fire is as hot as you can get it.
  • Let pots cool gradually. Clay objects that cool off too quickly will make a popping sound which means they have probably cracked or broken.

Build an Outdoor Fire Pit

In order to give your clay pots and other items the fortitude they must have to hold up under repeated use, you must carefully fire the clay. To do this you will need to build a fire pit. Dig a hole big enough to put all of your clay objects inside and with space to place wood all around them. Slowly heat the pottery by placing it around the outside of the fire and moving it closer a little at a time.

Build a wall up around the pit using large rocks or bricks. If available, place a grate over the fire pit and allow the pottery to dry on the grate for some additional time. Once the pottery is adequately dried out, place your items in the bottom of the pit and build an upside down pyramid of fuel, largest pieces of wood at the bottom with smaller sticks and kindling at the top.

Light the fire so it burns from the top down. It’s best if the fire burns as hot as it possibly can until there is nothing left but ashes around your pottery. Let cool slowly and completely before removing pottery from the ash. You may need to let cool for up to 24 hours or more so be patient. Once your items have been fired, you can clean them with a wire brush and water.

Knowing how to find, dig, and process natural clay is certainly a good survival skill to have. Keep in mind that clay has great water repellant qualities and can also be used as a sealant or glue when building a shelter, outdoor oven, or other structures. Although creating your own pots, dishes, containers, utensils, and tools from clay that you find in the wilderness may not be the ideal way because of the time involved, it is quite possible to do.

For those who want to be prepared for whatever may come their way, it’s a good idea to scout out and mark on your bug out map in advance any places where you find clay. If you find yourself in a bug out situation, without a container or utensil that you need, consider making your own clay for survival purposes.

How to keep your underground Survival Stockpile Safe

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by Jack Woods

The best assurance of survival during a collapse is to be prepared, and to stack the odds in your favor. You can do this by planning to build in redundancies right into your prepper plan, by stockpiling many smaller caches instead of only a few.

The best redundancy plan is to use many caches, and then in the event of discovery or spoilage (when it comes to perishables or rust regarding metal items) you will have not lost everything in one shot.

You can do this quite easily with my caching system. I am telling you readers my system, because it works so well. I also think the best approach to a collapse of any kind is working together. “We often forget to do that in this world these days.” Our pioneer ancestors found it essential to life on the land. “Help thy neighbor.”

My System

My system of caching has been designed around the premise of redundancy. I have achieved this by never storing my entire cache in just one or two locations. You can achieve this efficiently by being mobile at the time of your caching, and mind you might consider whether you will be mobile during or after the collapse.

Conditions may be so extreme you likely you will not be mobile after a collapse, or in the very least you will be on foot at some point eventually. This is a factor to considered carefully regarding the locations of your caches. Before you develop this ultimate caching system, as a prepper you need to understand the conditions that you will be dealing with, when caching at your different sites, and bear in mind what the items you cache are.

Any caching system, no matter what the items are (that are being cached), will be susceptible to the following failures:

  • Insect infestation and/or animal disturbances (Bears, rodents etc.)
  • Summer Heat
  • Winter Freeze
  • Moisture infiltration (Leakage)
  • Discovery by others (Due to disturbances of vegetation during caching)
  • The inability to relocate the cache (By you or someone you trust to retrieve it for you)

Before I get into any detail regarding my caching system, I wish to layout the particulars you will need to consider first. For instance, this method of caching is more designed for remote areas such as we have in the rural settings where there is still considerable distance between you and your neighbors. This is to say, my methods may not necessarily be the best way to cache within urban and suburban areas, due to the factors of rediscovery by others. Such as being observed by nosey neighbors during the caching process. I have my reasons for bringing this point up, and I will elaborate more soon.

Considerations

The ideal caching considerations for me are these:

  1. Assurance against the above environmental issues, moisture, temperature, insects, animals, etc.…
  2. Deciding on the individual cache sites, using the above considerations
  3. Preparing the cache system for the field
  4. My big secret; and expediting your caching, by cutting down on your exposure in the field, thus reducing discovery by others

First the system

The best system I have devised over the years is as follows; this is using the most widely available material for my system of “Caching Tubes.” I have found this system to be foolproof so far; it is based around using large diameter ABS OR PVC style sewerage pipes and fittings, for the Caching Tubes.

Any contractor will vouch for the durability of these tough pipes. Not only are they tough, but also when glued up with the proper glue for the type of plastic, they are completely water and weather proof, and rarely come apart even under extreme stress.

Out here in the west of this great country, these ABS OR PVC pipes come in very large sizes, due to the oil and gas industry out here, and can be purchased in diameters up to 24 inches around. However, these large sizes are very expensive, so I only mention common household PVC pipes 6” dia., and under. These anyone can purchase at any hardware store or Home Depot. Obviously, the End caps are expensive.

A prepper can anticipate building one of these for $50 – $100 dollars a tube in the 6” PVC range, cheaper if you buy bulk or go together with a group. The end caps are the most expensive and may need to be order in.

I have found that most of what I personally need to cache in these sizes, can be repackage or broken down to fit into one of these 6” diameter pipes. The bottom end can be capped with a simple glued on end cap, and the top can be fitted with a standard watertight gasket and threaded end cap for easy removal, and then reusable.

(A tip here is fit the threaded cap on before packing the cache tube, as some threaded ends reduce the opening size trapping your items inside.)

Obviously, the length of each pipe is up to you and whatever you decide to cache in these Cache Tubes this will determine their ideal length.

Lets take for instance, a survival rifle, and the ammunition stored in a 4’ foot long Caching Tube. Depending on the model or design of rifle, it may fit easily in a 6” dia. pipe. These can be placed into a tube either whole, or broken down into its various parts.

This is done by disassembling the rifle, for instance a bolt-action rifle, can be processed by removing its stock from the barrel before placing inside the tube. (Remember throw in the screwdriver in for re-assembly.) In addition, some room should be left in the tube to hold sufficient ammunition for the weapon and maybe even a cleaning kit and survival knife, fire starter etc. The key is to pack them solid with anything you will need.

Storing food, in these ABS OR PVC Cache Tubes is also very practical as neither weather, insects or groundwater are going to affect the food inside these airtight containers. Besides, basic preparing methods using these caches, a truly dedicated prepper can use silicate bags to prevent moisture buildup or by filling the food Cache Tubes with nitrogen gas to eliminate any air and removing the potential for moisture, thus preventing fungus and molds from growing on the food or any rust in the case of metals.

My only concern regarding foods containing liquids and the prevention of freezing, such as with bottled water, jars, or canned goods being stored in cold climates must be stored carefully. Items such as these containing water must be stored below the frost line to prevent freezing and possibly bursting over time. I will elaborate more on how to do this a bit later, also on how to prevent this problem from occurring at all.

Limits to my system

Obviously, the only limit to what you can store in these containers, is perhaps the size restriction, or storing volatile fuels (Flammable liquids etc.). Although the danger of an explosion is not very real, mostly due to the lack of oxygen, or of a proper ignition source. These fuels could be prone to leakage I suspect.

Alternatively, a prepper could simply add a fuel treatment additive to a jerry can and just bury it instead, rather then one of these Caching Tubes. Fuels are not affected much by freezing (So not a concern per se), all though heat could cause expansion and some leakage of your jerry cans (Warning: In the case of the Caching Tubes I suspect the glue might fail from the fuel, and the rigidity of the tube may make it rupture under the expansion from summers heat.) PLEASE NOTE: I do not recommend storing fuel in these tubes.

How to prevent Freezing, and expedite caching

Here is my BIG SECRET.

The beauty of using these cache tubes besides their durability is the way they can be hidden. The quickest and most elegant method is to bury them, and to store as many as one can (virtually undetected), using a gas powered posthole digger to augur the holes. These can be rented from any construction rental store for a reasonable daily rate. One of these and a decent plan using an ATV to get around and you are set to start caching. (ATV can also be rented) The two man style augurs have bits all the way up to 12”, but you would need to be two very big guys to handle one of these.

I have based my design around the 6” augur and materials. These can also be dug by yourself with a single man augur, unless you are digging many deep holes, then two men are best.

Now I know the first thing to pop into every prepper’s head is this:

“Won’t an augur be somewhat noisy”?

The answer to that is yes, it will.

That is why at the beginning of this article I pointed out that this is more of a rural caching system. All though the noise from an auger does not sound much different from a gas powered mower, and I suppose one could easily do this in an urban or suburban environment as well. Just by mowing the lawn the same day you augur the holes, making sure your nosey neighbors see you mowing too.

The beauty for farmers is they can be done while you are doing your normal post digging.

Freezing in Winter

Now to prevent freezing you may need an attachment to allow you to drill below frost line. In my area this is 4’ feet, but that is the worse case scenario due to frost heaving, and according to building codes. If you do not know the depth of the frost in your area, you can get this from most weather station sites, or by Google searching the Internet, or just find it through your local building codes. The next question that I can almost hear from some of you preppers out there is this:

“How do you get the Caching Tube out of such a deep hole when you need it.”

Good question that depends on the type of ground it is buried-in. Remember, only items that you do not want to freeze need to be below the frost line. Bearing that in mind, in relatively sanding soil, they can be easily retrieved from depths of overburden of 4 feet or more, by fastening a chain or cable around the cache before bury it, and using an ATV winch or better yet a vehicle winch, and simply hauling it straight up from the hole.

If trees are nearby the cache hole, a prepper can use a simple pulley system or come-along to do the same thing. The best way to fasten this to the tube is to use a sturdy chain looped and bolted around the tube to create a “cinch” when lifting it out, this prevents the chain from slipping against the glued end cap and potentially breaking the seal.

I have personally used this method, and it works wonderfully well. If you are worried about metal detectors, simply tie a retrieval line to the chain and drop it in the hole atop the cache, and leave just the retrieval rope near the surface to pull up the chain or cable. That way all the metal will be at least 4 feet below the surface and out of the range of the metal detector. A good trick is to through some gum wrappers or a bottle cap near the top to through off the metal detector, once they find one of these they will not bother looking further.

However, in rocky or heavy clay soil this chain retrieval system might end up as a disaster. (You decide as this has never happen to me so far). Perhaps the hole is packed to tightly by rain and the cinched chain slips against the glued upper cap (This has happen to mine and the cap held no problem), then separating it from the cache tube, thus breaking the seal, and contaminating the contents. In these rocky situations, the best method is to fill the augured hole with loose debris, and just cover the top 6” inches with soil and/or foliage. In the worst case, simply dig it out by hand and haul it up.

For caches near the surface, just barely bury the top, and then you can unscrew the head whenever needed and take what you want from it, resealing it by using the threaded cap. This system has many possibilities and as I said before it is very versatile.

Digging the holes

The best method I have found to hide and prevent discovery of these caches is this; I carry a hinged 4’ X 4’ foot sheet of ½” inch plywood with a 12 “ inch hole in the middle of it. For a visual reference, it is simply a 4’ foot square sheet of plywood with a 12” inch hole in the center. I cut mine in half and added 6 sturdy garden hinges to it for convenience so when I carry it on my quad it is easy and portable. I have even added straps and made a pack board out of it, to hold the auger.

My procedure:

The area to auger is first cleared of ground cover in the case of the woods (Leaves and debris to be used later to conceal it when done), and the plywood rig with its hole, is thrown over the area to be augured. This plywood sheet is to prevent spreading of the lower soils during auguring, thus making it that much harder to hide when finished.

Most of you realize that the lower soil colors often are a different shade of color and this makes ground disturbance easy to detect for those trying to steal your cache. The soil is thus brought up by the auger pouring out around the hole and displaced over the plywood, preventing it from damaging the covering vegetation, and then leaving traces of disturbance. (Especially useful in grassy areas)

Thus, the disturbed area is never any bigger then the 12” inch hole in the plywood. A tarp could also serve this purpose, however I found that occasionally it can be caught up in the auger, or in the very least does not work as well as the plywood does when tiding up with a shovel after.

I can fold my plywood rig containing the final remaining dirt and simply dumping the excess into plastic pails to carry off to somewhere else to be distributed unnoticed (Note: There will always be extra dirt because of the displacement of soil due to the Caching Tube). Then simply put back the proper colored topsoil and cover with surface debris the same way any old trapper knows how to do, and blend your “set” with the surroundings to keep it hidden. The whole apparatus including the augur can be easily carried on an ATV and I have found this system works best of all.

You can imagine how quickly a dozen Caching Tubes can be hidden using a power auger in this way, especially if you, yourself have ever dug postholes with one of these augurs. They are very quick in most loose soils. Yes, sometimes you will encounter rocks during auguring, and may even need to abandon a hole because of these rocks. However all in all this is a very affective method for two people for caching many cache tubes in one day or a weekend of camping. Bear in mind that only caches susceptible to metal detectors, freezing in cold climates or ambitious cache robbers need to be deeper or below the frost line.

Remember the whole set up can be turned into a pack board also, in the case of hiking the augur off road. (I suggest that preppers cache off the trail at least 100 feet when burying things of great value.) The further off the trail the better, you do not want to lose your cache to a some wondering citizen and their Labrador retriever out for a walk one day. Bury them under a bush or in a creek for additional cover use your imagination.

Other ways these cache tubes can be used

Because these cache tubes are watertight, they can be submerged under beaver ponds, anchored alongside a boat mooring, or even buried in a swamp, etc.

You may even want to strap them beside the under carriage of your truck with some straps, such as along the frame, this is a great way hide items in transit when bugging out too.

The sky is the limit. The ideal application for these tubes is to bury them before you need them, and place them somewhere you can get to them when ready for that inevitable day. They are money in the bank.

The beauty of these caching tubes is that even if everyone is using this system of caching, it does not make it any easier to discover your cache. That is why I do not mind sharing my ideas with you the readers. Although I suppose the Government may start keeping tract of plastic pipe sales or augur rentals now.

Who really cares what they do anyway. Certainly bury things on public land might be construed as illegal, but caching is completely legal on land you have permission to be on.

Strategies you may want to consider

Immediate caching around your home is always a good thing. These should be cached items necessary in the event of a collapse and caches you are not so concerned about during government lock downs like during warranted searches or even warrantless ones such as during so-called martial law emergencies.

Reasons for remote caching should be obvious to you now, and should be available to you during a collapse when you need to bug out in a hurry. You cannot always carry supplies with you on the run. Roadside Check Stops might find and confiscate things like your firearms, and who knows what else.

A series of remote caches should be ready in areas you plan to escape to, such as nearby public lands you can access by foot or with an ATV if you are lucky enough to own one. Such remote wilderness areas are ideal, like public forestry’s and logging areas, game preserves etc. These are the ideal cache sites for this type of system of caching. All preppers should consider how readily accessible the Cache Tube system will be to them, and weigh this against how easy it could be for others to find your cache at any chosen location. If you suspect you will be on foot after a collapse, and in a desert zone obviously drinking water caches will need to be strategically placed within a days walking distance from each other for your survival.

Keeping track of your caches

Okay, I can hear you guys now.

“Don’t be daft, of course I can find my cache again, I have an excellent memory.”

Well what if you need to send someone else to retrieve it? You certainly do not want to bring the entire group or family, and friends with you when you go caching these tubes, or have more then one map out there. Besides, a map will be quickest way to loose all your caches to some bad guy out there.

Yes, modern GPS plotting systems are great, but these can also be compromised, and will be of no use at all, if an EMP blasts all the electronics out at your house, or the planets satellite network goes down.

Personally, I will use the GPS coordinates, and save them on flash drive, even though they are encrypted with 128-bit encryption, and not likely to be figured out by anyone, though they can become corrupted and lost. I of course know where all my caches are located, plus a very close friend also knows, they invested time and energy with me to bury them during the caching.

Yet, you know the old saying about a “SECRET”: it is something you tell only one other person, and eventual everyone knows it. So, tell no one about the important items until they need to know. The safest bet is never telling any one where all the caches are regardless of the reasons, unless they absolutely need to know.

So, make your maps, or plot them on GPS printouts. I suggest you use many maps showing only a few hiding places on each, to ensure you will not lose all the caches in one shot if some one finds a map or gets it out of you with some devil truth serum like my personal favorite “Single Malt Whiskey”. Then hide these maps away in anyway you see fit.

Drill out a coffee table leg and roll one up inside. Put one in some fake ice cream containers in the freezer, use a fake birdhouse outback or cache it in a cache tube in a hollowed out tree in the nearby woods, whatever is best, but never have all of them together in one spot. Maybe even give different family members the less important maps just for their safety. (Showing Water, and food caches, etc.)

 

I believe now, you are ready for anything.

“Good Luck,” From The practical prepper.

Jack Woods

How to escape a thug’s unwanted wrist grab advance… in two simple moves

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MAD Defense-Mike Sbonik (left) & Mark Griesbach (right)

MAD Defense-Mike Sbonik (left) & Mark Griesbach (right)

by Mike Sbonik

 

You see it all the time on the streets and in the news where some criminal-minded thug grabs hold of his next victim with the intent to do her harm. While some politically correct believers say the best response is to just “talk nice” to your aggressor and he’ll stop.

Well, I don’t think so. Instead, I think you need a Quick Escape Plan so you won’t be the next victim of aggravated assault that I see in the news.

Hi, I’m Mike Sbonik, founder of the M.A.D. Defense Academy™ LLC, an online resource community for those self-reliant folks who want to learn to take care of themselves, especially in aggressive or dangerous situations.

Our mission is to educate good-hearted people like you on reality self-defense, un-armed and armed, so they can escape situations like the one above. We want to give you better odds of getting home safe to your loved ones. I have interviewed and trained with some of the best reality fighting combat experts, including Mark Griesbach. (MAD Defense image of Mike & Mark)

He is a Christian martial arts instructor who taught thousands of students from all walks of life with experience spanning over four decades. He holds Master belts in many systems and weapons, but more than that, he is a person that was challenged to many bare-knuckle street fights. In fact, he actually had a bounty on his head from a local biker bar to anyone that could knock him down. No kidding, it sounds like a movie script.

Mark said to me, “you can take out an attacker even if he’s bigger, stronger, or faster in under 6 seconds, if you know a few basic simple moves that work.”

So let me show you what Mark teaches to escape quickly when someone grabs your wrist with the intent on doing you harm.

MAD Image 1

Step 1: first thing to remember is to think “not me, I will not be your next victim. I’m not going down without a fight.” This thought process will put you in the proper frame of mind to be ready to fight for your freedom and it kicks up your adrenaline. Attackers hate it when you fight back. They want easy, compliant victims. But don’t comply. It’s better to escape early in a situation than to wait and see what will happen to you later.

While keeping your elbow as close to your body as possible for leverage, begin to roll your arm and wrist towards his thumb side in a circular motion.

MAD Image 2

For example see the picture, if he grabs your left wrist with his right hand, you will use a counter-clockwise circle.

This circle motion against his weak thumb will break his grip in one simple circular move!

Step 2: continue to roll your hand until it is on top of the aggressor’s hand. Now you are in control and you ‘turned the tables’ on your aggressor.

MAD Image 3

You now have a choice on how to finish your attacker. Your situation will dictate this.

If this person wasn’t really trying to do harm or you feel he will leave you alone now without escalation, then just “seek your escape” by simply shoving his arm down and away and back away from the attacker.

But if you still feel threatened then I suggest “creating justifiable damage.” In this case, you would want to target some vital spots to create nerve pain which will stun and halt your attacker; giving you time to get away. One good set of finish moves is the right hand claw to the eyes and right knee to the groin.

MAD Image 4

This should all be practiced in the air and with a friendly helper until you get the motions down with repetition. Please train in safety. You want to develop your neuro-muscular imprint so that your body will follow this movement at the time it is needed. Now you give it a try.

For more information on Mark and to access some free member reality lessons, visit us at www.6secondcombat.com.

 

Train often and stay safe out there my friend,

Author: Mike Sbonik of www.maddefense.com

Photos by: Becki Whitman Photography, McKinney, TX

The Dual Faces of the Militia Movement

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by Megan

The face of the Militia Movement that you see most likely depends on your political viewpoint and the amount of actual experience you’ve had with the members of a militia. It may also depend on which militia you have experience with as each of them differs in their level of extremism. The average American gets most of their information about the militia movement via the news media reports which come whenever there is a conflict of some sort. In many cases that information is distorted for dramatic and political purposes.

Many neighborhoods already are forming neighborhood watch groups to monitor potential criminal activity and try to prevent criminal activity from occurring in their neighborhoods. One great national resource for this in the United States is www.nextdoor.com. Individuals can create a free account using their address and be automatically placed into the appropriate group for their neighborhood.

With NextDoor.com, boundaries for groups can be adjusted on a map to be as large or small as the group desires. It’s a great way to be introduced to your neighbors and begin to work together as a community to help keep your neighborhood safer right now. But anyone can start a neighborhood watch group just by gradually contacting neighbors and setting up meetings. A neighborhood watch group is a great way to initially bring like-minded people together who are interested in the safety of their entire neighborhood.

An organized militia when done correctly, combines an interest in keeping your entire group or neighborhood safer with the mindset and skills of a prepper. A militia can become a trained and organized group who is ready to defend the families and property in their neighborhood or town when the need arises.

What is a Militia?

A militia is a group of people, typically non-professional fighters, and comprised of everyday citizens who have been trained in the various aspects of fighting. This group of people can be called upon to fight if and when they are needed.

Most preppers know that securing supplies and security of your group will be major issues during a SHTF situation or an extended grid-down scenario. Some people believe they will be able to protect their belongings best in a small group made up of just their family members. For those people who are isolated and outside of the reach of hordes of desperate unprepared families and looters, that may work out.

But while there is definitely logic to only having family and friends in your group that you know well and trust, there are others who believe that the value of a larger group is that members can pool skills and resources to better chances of survival. There are others who believe that local law enforcement will be quickly overwhelmed in a SHTF or WROL situation and having trained militia members who can step in and offer assistance will be beneficial.

Let’s face it, our local law enforcement members can be tremendously helpful with criminal activity that involves individuals or small groups. But in a WROL situation, it is possible that local law enforcement will be overwhelmed by the sheer numbers of people involved. Paychecks will cease and officers’ will be faced with protecting their own families or staying on the job. An armed militia ready to fill in could be beneficial. A militia could mean the difference between a neighborhood having adequate supplies and security to survive and not.

Forming a Militia to Prep for a WROL Situation

There are several categories of things to consider when starting a militia including:

  • Recruitment
  • Physical Fitness
  • Security
  • Equipment
  • Weapons
  • Communications
  • Strategy and Tactics
  • Mission Planning and Execution

For more information on recruiting and organizing an effective militia in our modern times, see the video from the Oklahoma Defense Force recruitment officer below:

Although militias are not new, there were several incidents beginning in 1992 that caused an increase in the number of militia members back in the 1990’s including the incident known as Ruby Ridge, the Waco Texas raid, and the Brady Bill on gun control.

Ruby Ridge Incident

In August of 1992, a standoff occurred at a remote cabin in northern Idaho, owned by Randy Weaver and his family. Randy Weaver, a known white separatist had failed to show for court on charges of illegal sales of guns. Weaver’s 14-year-old son and their family dog were walking on a road near the family’s property when U.S. Marshals shot and killed the dog. Sammy returned fire, he and U.S. Marshal Michael Degan were killed. A standoff ensued and the FBI was called in and the siege resulted in the death of Weaver’s wife as well.

Waco, Texas

One of the most famous of these conflicts occurred in February of 1993 in Waco, Texas on a Branch Davidian compound, raided by over seventy BATF (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms) agents.

The FBI was called in and the stand-off continued for more than seven weeks. On April 19th, armored vehicles moved in and tear gas was shot into the compound for several hours. By afternoon the building was in flames and more than seventy men, women, and children died.

Most experts agree that the incidents at Ruby Ridge and Waco, Texas eroded faith in our government’s intention towards its gun carrying citizens and when the Brady Bill passed in November 1993 that convinced many current militia members that the government was corrupt and turning against its own citizens, and intended to completely disarm American individuals.

Following the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995 and the false accusation that Timothy McVeigh was associated with the Michigan militia, several groups disbanded but the publicity brought new members to the militia. Anger with the government, fear of mass gun confiscation, and susceptibility to conspiracy theories, including that a New World Order would be imposed upon the country, brought the militia movement to its peak in early 1996.

Prominent Leaders:

  • John Trochmann in Montana (founder of one of the earliest and most well-known militia groups) He published “Taking Aim”, a magazine and his group was sometimes chided for being the Mail Order Militia. Heavily involved in Y2K hype. Still active today.
  • Ron Gaydosh in Michigan
  • Charlie Puckett in Kentucky spent 12 years as the leader and primary trainer of the Kentucky State Militia. He was arrested and jailed in 2002 for allegedly manufacturing and/or possessing a machine gun.
  • Mark Koernke in Michigan aka “Mark from Michigan” during his prominence as a militia activist and shortwave radio broadcaster. He hosted “The Intelligence Report” on WWCR but his broadcasts were suspended by the station shortly after he indicated that Timothy McVeigh might become victim of an FBI assassination. He created educational videos, including “America in Peril” the catalyst in a trilogy of documentaries.
  • Carl Worden in Oregon leader of the Southern Oregon Militia which was initially created to assist local police in the event of an incident similar to the Rodney King riots in Los Angeles. Now views government as the corrupt enemy.
  • Linda Thompson, Indiana. An attorney who made a video called Waco, The Big Lie. She claimed stickers on backs of highway signs were to guide U.N. tanks after they invaded the U.S.
  • Ron Cole-inspired by Branch Davidian siege in 1993 to convert, he founded the North American Liberation Army and the Colorado Light Infantry. He and three other members of the Colorado militia were arrested in 1997 on suspicion of machine gun possession.
  • Robert G. Millar—An immigrant from Canada who founded a compound known as Elohim City in Oklahoma in 1973. During 90’s four members of the Aryan Republican Army hid out there. Timothy McVeigh may have had ties with the compound as well. Richard Snell, a resident of Elohim City, while convicted on death row for murder, threatened something drastic on the day of his execution. Oklahoma City bombing was just hours before the Snell execution.

General Philosophies of Militia Members

Sovereign activists are those people who believe none of the Amendments that followed the Bill of Rights are valid. This means the true American people are only the white Christians. They claim they are direct ideological heirs of American revolutionaries.

Anti-Socialists are those members of the militia groups convinced that the federal government is intent on destroying the individual liberties of American citizens. They believe gun control, income tax, and land use regulations are in violation of the Constitution. The Brady Bill and the subsequent ban on assault weapons were believe to be the first phase of a disarmament of the people.

Anti-internationalists are those members who believe the federal government has been already taken over by the United Nations, The Trilateral Commission, Israel, Russia and other third world countries. They believe they are acting in the interest of all Americans and anyone who doesn’t share their beliefs must be deluded or in league with the foreign enemy.

Anti-secular humanists believe that the conspiracy within the Federal government is targeting Christianity and in turn the Constitution which was founded on Christian beliefs.

Some militia members may hold beliefs belonging to one or more of the above categories and like with any beliefs there are different levels of commitment to those beliefs. So, just like with the prepper community, the militia movement is made up of people who are preparing to defend themselves against a threat. In fact, many preppers may belong to a militia as part of their preparations for what is to come.

Although the militia members may differ in what they think that threat may be and how it will be carried out, they are preparing to rise up and/or defend against threats as needed. Contrary to popular belief, not all militia members condone racism and violence.

In fact, many of the militia websites and literature specifically indicates they will not tolerate racism, inciting violence against the government, etc. For many of them, they are training in order to present an organized and effective defense of American citizens, against ANY future threat, should the need arise.

Prominent Groups

  • Kentucky State Militia
  • Ohio Unorganized Militia Assistance and Advisory Committee
  • Southeastern Ohio Defense Force
  • Michigan Militia (2 factions using same name)
  • Southern Indiana Regional Militia
  • Southern California High Desert Militia

http://archive.adl.org/learn/ext_us/militia_m.html

The Resurgence

Began in 2008-09 amidst the election of Obama, the economic crisis, the Tea party movement and a proliferation of propaganda from right -wing blogs, and talk radio there was a resurgence of the Patriot movement, especially strong in Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Kentucky.

Groups at the forefront of this rejuvenated movement were:

The Oath Keepers—formed in early 2009 by Founder, Stewart Rhodes, law school grad and former aide to U.S. Rep Ron Paul. Oath Keeps is made up of current and former police and military. Members vow to uphold the oats to the Constitution that was in effect while in military or law enforcement. They believe their oath is to the Constitution not the politicians. They do not claim the militia label and the SPLC does not consider them a hate group. Estimates put membership at over 35,000 whose actions include:

  • Assignment of four armed men during social uprising in Ferguson Missouri to protect property
  • Offering Kentucky county clerk, Kim Davis, protection when she refused to grant gay couples marriage licenses.
  • Protested the U.S. Forest Service in partnership with other groups in Montana.
  • Protected property rights at Sugar Pine Mine in Oregon until the land owner called for them to desist due to social media spectacle cause by keyboard commandos.

The video below is the Oath Keepers response to the recent Orlando shooting:

Constitutional Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association

A group whose mission is to fight against land ownership by the federal government by promoting “County sheriff supremacy” and holding sheriffs as the “highest level of law enforcement authority” over state and federal governments. The groups interpretation of the law is repudiated by most legal experts. Ken Ivory, Utah State Rep, is a public official most noted for supporting seizures of public land.

Threepers

Led by Mike Vanderboegh of Alabama, the Threepers exploded into public light when Vanderboegh in March 2010 published this statement, “To all modern Sons of Liberty: THIS is your time. Break their windows. Break them NOW”, on his blog.  Threepers philosophy is that the establishment of the United States of America after overthrowing British tryanny is attributed to only 3% of the colonial American population who served in militias.

The Washington Post reported several incidences of glass doors and windows being shattered at Democratic district offices from New York, to Kansas, to Arizona. There were reports of death threat to at least 10 Democratic lawmakers, incidents of vandalism and harassment.

The Citadel-Chris Kerodin

Chris Kerodin originally part of the Alabama Threepers under Vanderboegh broke away from that group and in November 2013, registered the Citadel Land Corporation, with the Secretary of State in Idaho. The Citadel was to be a planned compound made up of residents united by:

  • Patriotism
  • Pride in American Exceptionalism
  • Proud history of Liberty as defined by the Founding Fathers
  • Physical preparedness to survival and prevail in the face of natural or man-made catastrophes.

The intent was to create a walled city with one gate to house up to 7,000 patriotic American families who recognize emergency preparedness and proficiency with a rifle are prudent measures. Proposed layout included three distinct neighborhoods with schools, a farmers’ market, firearms museum, and town center. The primary economic source III Arms Factory displayed prominently within. Although there was a purchase of 20 acres of land in the area, the Citadel itself doesn’t seem to have gotten off the ground as of yet.

The New Wave

Citizens for Constitutional Freedom

Oregon members, organized around two sons of Cliven Bundy, Nevada rancher who sparred with government in 2014 when he failed to pay over $1 million in grazing fees. Members led by Ammon Bundy, occupied a remote government cabin in Oregon for five days in January 2016. Their goal is reduction of federal land ownership in every county and state and promotion of individual Americans’ Constitutional rights. Accused federal government of imposing tyranny through land management practices. They claim to have been protesting the re-imprisonment of the Hammond family. The Hammonds were jailed for a fire that started and spread to 139 acres of federally managed land they had grazing rights to. The Hammond family publically denied association with the Citizens for Constitutional Freedom.

In 2008 there were only 42 local militia groups. By 2009 estimates were that 50 new militia training groups had been created in less than 2 years. Sales of ammunition and guns skyrocketed in 2009. There was a cross-over between militiamen, anti-Semites, tax protestors, white supremacists, and nativists. 2008-2009 saw the more growth than over the previous decade. In 2014 the number of active anti-government groups was estimated at 202 and it jumped to 276 in 2015, as Here you can find links to many militia groups.

Many militia members state they are committed to the preservation of freedom, protection of individual rights and restoration of the constitution as the law. Referencing Agenda 21, the U.N. resolution on sustainable development, some local militia members fear is establishment of a New World Order and believe citizens will be forced into FEMA camps during an enactment of Martial Law across the country.

There is an overall distrust of government born of events surrounding Hurricane Katrina and the 911 bombing. Militias fear the government will be overwhelmed with the chaos of future events and that they are preparing to either assist local law enforcement in maintaining order or to effectively defend their family and community during a SHTF event against ANY threat, including their own government if need be.

There are extremists who will call themselves militia members but across the board most militia groups today will tell you that they do not condone racism, bombings or violence against the government or anything illegal unless the government oversteps its authority. They are training their members in various types of skills including map reading, navigation, gun safety and target practice, first aid, and military evasion.

The militia groups are growing, being fed by current events that many people see as a threat including ISIS, the Flint water crisis, the large number of refugees in Detroit, the attack in Paris, and the one in Orlando. Many militia members believe that armed citizens could prevent or at least reduce the number of innocent lives lost. Our current political arena has done nothing to ease the fears of the people and more individuals are turning to the militia in fear of what the current Democratic election may bring in its wake.

The militia have for the most part been portrayed by the media as obsessive, extreme, racist and prone to violence. For anyone who researches the militia movement, it’s clear that the media profile of militias has been greatly exaggerated and one-sided. Perhaps this one-sided portrayal of the militia is intentional, to keep the average citizen from considering militia membership as a viable option to the current political and economic chaos.

The Bible says there is a time to fight. Our Constitution states that no government shall overstep our constitutional rights and that the “body of the people” shall rise up to defend it. The militia members are preparing for everything from natural disasters to foreign attack.

To this aim, Rick Light of Texas has kicked off a movement to professionalize the militias, to further weed out the racists, the extremists, and the immature in an attempt to bring those people with common ground together in a more cohesive, organized, and prepared way.

Because after all, United We Stand, Divided We Fall.

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How to Make Delicious Survival Bread

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by Jack Woods

These are by far the easiest camp breads that you can make, and they are all delicious. Most of these recipes are for campfire cooking using Cast iron pans or a Dutch oven. The first example can also be cooked over a fire using just a green willow branch.
The French Canadian Voyageur Method of Cooking bannock without a cast iron pan:

This method is the easiest prepper bread of all, it is done by rolling out a long piece of the bannock dough between your hands, and wrapping it around a green willow branch then prop it above the coals, rotating it as needed. Even the kids will love this way of cooking there own bread.

Simple Bannock Bread

• 3 cups flour
• 1 teaspoon Salt
• 2 teaspoons baking powder
• 1/4 cup butter or favourite oil, even bacon grease or rendered Bear fat
• 1 1/2 cups water

1. Measure flour, salt, and baking powder into a large bowl. Stir to mix. Pour melted butter and water over flour mixture. Stir with fork to make a ball.
2. Turn dough out on a lightly floured surface, and knead gently about 10 times. Pat into a flat circle 3/4 to 1 inch thick.
3. Cook in a greased frying pan over medium heat, allowing about 15 minutes for each side. Use two lifters for easy turning. Sticks will work, in a pinch. May also be baked on a greased baking sheet at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 25 to 30 minutes.

The beauty of this simple bread is it can be made sitting beside a fire just as easily as at home, and it takes only one bowl to make it. I like to have these dry ingredients pre mixed, so all I need to do is add water, and oil. You may even add dried fruit or berries or even dry cheese if you have some. I have even made this right in the Dutch Oven, by coating the bottom with flour first, and scrubbing it clean with an evergreen branch, and then simply adding some oil to the bottom, before baking.

Camp Biscuits

The next simple prepper recipe is biscuits’. These can be made in a cast iron frying pan with a lid, as well as a Dutch oven.

The simplest camp biscuit is not much different then the bannock, but with a twist if you have this ingredient.

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 cup milk
  1. Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl.
  2. Add the mayo, milk, and stir until soft dough forms.
  3. Dust any flat area (A Board, Rock, or back of one of your cooking pans) with flour and turn out the dough on it. (Add additional flour if it is feeling too sticky.)
  4. Roll or pat out and cut with any cup or glass.
  5. Arrange the biscuits in your greased pan or Dutch oven and bake for 12 minutes.
  6. Makes 12 biscuits

The simplest way to bake with a fire is by scraping aside some coals to place under your pan, and banking additional coals around the outside and the top of your cast pan. A truly good cast iron set, has a lip around the lid to hold the coals that are on top, and some Dutch ovens even come with cast iron legs. However, these tend to break off over the years.

Common Flour Tortillas

Next is a great camp bread, and very easy to make. Tortillas can be used with all kinds of filling not just Mexican styles.

• 3 cups all-purpose flour
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 1 teaspoon baking powder
• ⅓ cup vegetable oil
• 1 cup warm water

1. Combine flour, salt, and baking powder in a bowl. Mix dry ingredients until well combined. Add oil and water until the mixture comes together and begins to form a ball. Continue to mix until dough is smooth. I like to do this with half the flour making a batter, and then add the additional dry ingredients until a smooth ball is formed.

2. Transfer from mixing bowl to a well-floured work surface. Divide dough in half, then in half again. Continue until you have 16 fairly, equal portions. Form each piece into a ball and flatten with the palm of your hand as much as possible. If dough is sticky, use a bit more flour. Cover flattened balls of dough with a clean kitchen towel and allow to rest for 15 minutes before proceeding.

3. After rest period, heat a large pan over medium-high heat. Roll each dough piece into a rough circle, about 8 inches in diameter, keep-working surface, with rolling pin lightly floured. Do not stack uncooked tortillas on top of each other or they will get soggy.

4. When pan is very hot place one dough circle onto pan, and allow cooking about one minute or until bottom surface begins to brown. The uncooked surface will begin to show a few little bubbles. If tortilla is browning too quickly, reduced heat by raising pan or removing coals from under it.

You can adjust a fire by pulling coals off to the side before you start and using rocks as legs under you pan. If it is taking longer than a minute to see the golden brown spots on underside of tortillas, increase heat a bit, by adding more coals. Flip to other side and cook for about thirty seconds. You will want the tortilla to be soft and have a few small golden brown spots on the surface. Remove from pan with tongs and stack in a covered container until all tortillas are cooked. This will keep them soft and pliable.

5. Wipe out the pan in between cooking each tortilla, if flour has started to accumulate.

6. Serve warm or allow too cool for later use. When you are ready, place a slightly damp paper towel in the bottom of a sealed container to hold the finsihed tortillas.

7. Then store in an airtight container or zip-loc bag these tortillas will keep well. Store at room temperature for next day or freeze them for long-term use. To freeze the tortillas, separate them with wax paper or waxed paper, or even newspaper in a pinch, and place in a zippered bag before placing in freezer.
(Not sure, what is in newsprint nowadays, but you do what you can, with what you got.)
These are the most awesome tortillas, much better then store bought, and very useful for camp life, or when serving a meal around a campfire.

Sour Dough an Old Time Favourite

My next favourite bread is sourdough, the reason I have saved this for last is it requires the prepper to make it ahead of time, as the ingredient for raising your dough are what makes the sour part. This mixture is a self-rising concoction that you make yourself, out of flour, yeast, and sugar that grows continuously with fermentation. You simply take out what you need to use, and feed it with flour and sugar to keep it going.

Simple Sour Dough Starter Recipe:

• 1 Tablespoon of dry yeast in a container of the warm water, and a tablespoon of sugar to feed the yeast.
• 2 cups flour
• 2 cups warm water mixture with yeast, wait unit it forms a head like a dark beer.

1. In large non-metallic bowl, mix together dry yeast that has been working in the 2 cups warm water, and 2 cups all purpose flour and cover loosely as this will be giving off CO2, and will explode if in a sealed container.

2. Leave in a warm place to ferment, 4 to 8 days. Depending on temperature and humidity of kitchen, times may vary. If this mixture gets to cold, it will kill the yeast and no longer create sour dough. Place on cookie sheet in case of overflow. Check on occasionally.

3. When mixture is bubbly and has a pleasant sour smell (Yeasty), it is ready to use. If mixture has a pink, orange, or any other strange color or tinge to it, THROW IT OUT, and start over. Wild strains of yeast are all around us, and some will destroy the yeast in your mixture. After creating it Keep it in the refrigerator, covered until ready to bake.

4. When you use starter to bake, always replace with equal amounts of a flour and water mixture with a pinch of sugar. So, if you remove 1 cup starter, replace with 1 cup water and 1 cup flour. Mix well and leave out on the counter until bubbly again, then refrigerate. If a clear to light brown liquid has accumulated on top, do not worry; this is only alcohol a liquid that occurs from fermentation. Just stir this back into the starter, the alcohol bakes off, and that wonderful sourdough flavor remains! Sourdough starters improve with age, they used to be passed down generation to generation!

5. Use this starter to make any Sourdough recipe.

Sour Dough Pinch Bread:

This is a quick bread and traditionally it was cooked in a Dutch oven.

• 1/2 cup sourdough starter
• 1 cup of milk or powder milk mixed with water
• 2 1/2 cups whole wear flour
• 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
• 2 teaspoons sweetener, (Sugar or honey)
• 3/4 teaspoon Salt
• 1 teaspoon baking powder
~ Bacon fat or bear grease for later use.

Mix the starter, milk, and one cup of the flour in a large bowl. Let this stand in a warm place over night to rise, or until ready. When ready, turn the mixture out on a flat area cover this first with the remaining flour. I like to make a pile and put an indentation in it to hold the soft mixture.

Add additional dry ingredients, and if you are using honey dissolve it in some warm water first. Knead the soft dough by working it gentle into the additional flour until easily rolled out, or no longer sticky. Roll into a half-inch thickness, and cut into squares with a knife or round biscuit shapes using a cup. Dip each in the bacon fat, before placing in oven. Place as usual in a Dutch oven or arrange on a square pan, and bake for 30 minutes checking occasionally to prevent burning when using coals or a wood fire.

TIPS and Alternatives to Cast Iron Cookware when Cooking around a Fire, Outdoors

For those of you that do not have cast iron cook ware yet, all one simply has to do instead is, before building your fire, dig a hole, and fill it with sand from the river bank or some fine gravel, then build your fire. First, establish a sufficient coal bed over the gravel filled hole (Usually within an hour or two).

You will then scrape aside the fire over the gravel fill, and dig out a hot area large enough to place your camp pot into, then bank the pot with the removed hot gravel, covering completely the entire pot with the hot gravel. Add back the coals from your fire above the makes shift oven, and bake. This works for roasting meat or slow cooking stews as well.

As for Bannock, it can be cooked just as easily by wrapping it around a green willow branch and propped above the fire, rotating it as needed. It is like roasting a marsh mellow. I like to use a stick with a nub of a branch still sticking out to keep the dough from spinning on the stick as you turn it. I also usually peel the bark off before doing this. Kids love to cook it their own as they sit around the fire, and whenever you can get kids to do some of the cooking DO IT! This keeps them from nagging the cook. They can even just mold it onto the end of their stick like play dough.

Satellite Phones for Preppers

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by Jack Woods

I spend most of the year out in the Bush, well beyond any cellular coverage. I have been living this way since 2013, and though I usually try to get indoors during the harsh winters of the Rockies. I have even spent a winter this way also, living in my RV away from it all. I do not want to live any other way; it has been a great way of life. Even as I type this article, I am enjoying the free camping way up in the mountains.

I am staring out over the mountains, and valleys, across the public forestry lands, living in my RV with a satellite phone that I use to upload my articles to you all. What more could I want? Any person that enjoys getting away from it all often finds that cell coverage is not very good or non-existent in the back woods. If you need to stay in contact with friends, family and the outside world, a satellite phone or VOIP phone system, over a satellite connection is the only practical way to do this.

Here are a couple of ideas for the serious prepper, and those of you who still enjoys some outside contact, while waiting for those mushroom clouds to appear on the horizon. I’m not really talking about a weekend get away here. I’m thinking of the long term bugout scenario or people like myself, that stay away in the bush for many moths.

Now if any of you have priced out mobile satellite Internet for yourselves you have probably been bowled over by the outrageous costs for those RV setups. Yeah, sure some of them can track satellites while you drive, but come on $7000.00 dollars. They can run as much as $2000 to $30,000.00 dollars for a mobile Internet satellite package. and that doesn’t even include the providers service. I do not know about you people, but that is a little out of my league. So… here are a couple of ideas that may appeal to the more frugal back woods campers like, myself.

Building your Satellite Internet System

It is best if you already have an account with a satellite provider. Then obtaining a portable or tailgate system with a dish and receiver is your next move. These can be purchased from online for far less then you might think. You might even decide to build your own system. What you will need is a dish obviously, a tripod and the gear to set up the dish, these are available online, just search for tripods for satellite dishes.

Many of these sites all have the necessary components that you need, and here are some of the parts you will need: A Dish, Tripod, Satellite signal meter, cables, and even a receiver. (I suggest you just bring your receiver from home) Now if you need an extra satellite dish your current provider is more then willing to sell you one. (Just tell them you want to mount it on the garage.) A decent price range for a remote satellite system combo ready made, is from $200.00 to less then $300.00 USD. You will also need to search Google for the set up coordinates used for aiming your system in the area you plan to camp in. This will be NECESSARY to aim your dish at the proper satellite, in the sky.

Aiming your Dish

First off, you will need a clear view of the southern sky to receive a good signal. The further north you are camping the lower on the horizon the satellite will be. This means mountains and other obstructions can be a problem in some locations and not others. Getting coordinates before you go is the best. Remember we are going to be in areas that do not have normal cell coverage. Here is a site that you can use to print off the coordinates for your camping spot. (http://www.dishpointer.com/) Just search for the location you wish to use the system in (GPS Coordinates are best), and then select the type of dish you have and search… The app will give you the what ever pertinent information you need to set up your dish, like the minimal heights and coordinates of your selection.

Important Information

First, your dish needs to match your receiver brand and type. In addition, rather then buying another receiver and trying to have it set up for your system, you can just as easily bring your home receiver with you when you are camping or bugging out for that matter. Is having your own remote system illegal? No. Is capturing a signal from your provider that you have a contract with illegal? No. Read your contract, but I doubt it says anything about that, so NO again. Your satellite provider may want to charge you a huge fee for your extra system, and they might want to either shut you down and your satellite system or charge you extra if they find out from YOU, that you are using a separate dish for camping. This defeats the purpose of obtaining your own camping system, wink-wink…

Privacy

On their own, your provider cannot tell if you are using a remote dish in the mountains, anymore then they can tell if you are sitting in your living room. One caveat though is when using it as an Internet, email, or VIOP phone service. You do give away your location when uploading or transmitting during these operations. If a location was needed, a trained professional could triangulate your location during theses data exchanges.

A satellite signal other wise is just that, a signal like any other broadcast signal like a radio signal; you can be anywhere within range (Below the artic circle) and you will pick up at least an intermitting signal. THEREFORE, DO NOT; contact your provider for technical help. Using their help center when you are trying to set up a remote system for yourself will tip them off that you have an additional satellite system and that usually costs you extra, so check your providers website for their policy. Besides there are plenty of sites online that will give you great details on how to set up and build your own system.

Many satellite accessory sites have inexpensive portable dish systems that match nearly every provider out there. So, search around. They offer much more then I do about dishes and signals too. Ideally, you will want an Internet package for your dish. So that you can get the Internet as well as hook up a phone line when out in the Boonies. The Internet package will allow you to have a normal home phone in the bush to contact the outside world during emergencies. You only need to set up a VIOP (Voice, Over, Internet, Provider) account to do this, and if you already have, one great just plug in your home phone and GO.

Satellite Phone Service

Using a simple Sat phone for emails is also possible and a lot less complicated then a full satellite system set-up. However, full satellite systems are better, they are expensive and not the most ideal for the prepper on a budget. The cheapest satellite phone provider out there right now that I have found at least, is Global Star (http://ca.globalstar.com/en/).

A person on a budget can purchase these sat phones, and services, and a “Car Kit” or other hook-up device to use on their laptop allowing them to upload or download personal email messages when in the Bush. Besides this, it allows you some very tedious Internet browsing. I admit the browsing speeds are horrendous, for instance downloading a single webpage can take a half hour at times. This is not very practical for most people, but it is a connection to the outside world nevertheless.

So, read your providers package details, as data transfer can cost you plenty if it is not included. Another thing is that sending attachments by email seems to be difficult with these setups, as it tends to break them up into separate emails and may not be readable on the other end. Yet this is better then two coconuts and a string I guess.

Conclusions

Bear in mind this is for areas outside of the normal cellular coverage. There are plenty of remote cellular data modems out there, especially in the lower 48s. This idea isn’t for those situations. Zero cell coverage in remote areas affects people in the far north more then the lower forty-eight states.

Furthermore, using the information that I have provided for building your remote satellite system is at your own risk. I do not wish to promote or encourage illegal activities, or get anyone into trouble with their service provider here. Whichever way you decide to go it is on you, and bear in mind the benefits of this technology, as well as the limitations. During a social or economic collapse or other dire emergency, these systems may be minimal at best, or even non-existent. So, be prepared and keep prepping. Also remember to help a neighbor out when you can; you never know when you, will need some help yourself one day. Maybe split the satellite service between you and your neighbor. Just a thought…

The Practical Prepper

Jack Woods

A Few Delicious Outdoor Cooking Recipes

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by Jack Woods

I have spent years in the outdoors. Over that time, I have accumulated many recipes from simple home cooking recipes, camping, and survival meals and some very unusual meals that seem truly desperate. When I asked for this topic, writing about outdoor cooking, I figured I could simply list out a few of my better recipes geared for the Modern Survival Online reader. Not so…

In no time, at all I found out quickly by simply searching the Internet that there was no shortage of recipes out there for exactly that purpose. Not wanting to sound like everyone else on the net, I decided to gather, together some of my more unusual, but successful meals. Here are some of those meals that I have tried in my life, and was pleasantly surprised by them all.

The more unusual recipes have been given to me by some of my more unusual backwoods characters that I have met over the years. Those grey bearded men, the trappers, and woodsmen that I have encountered in my many travels over as many years. Now some of these recipes can be substituted for what ever is readily available, but these recipes are tried and true recipes for the game they are designed for.

First the Fish

Fish Balls (Canned for the Prepper)

This recipe is many years old and no one knows where it comes from. I have updated it by using modern kitchen equipment to speed up the process, and ease the labor.

  • 1 ½ pounds of ANY WHITE FISH, cleaned and boned, cut into small pieces.
  • ½ cup light cream
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 ½ tablespoons cornstarch.

Place the fish pieces a few at a time into an electric blender. I use a coarse blend and a purée and mix the two. This can be adjusted to suit your particular tastes. The old recipe calls for a purée I prefer a more coarser chop. Suit yourself. The purée helps to bind the fish afterwards, when forming the fish balls. Repeat this procedure until all of the fish is blended.

Put all of the purée into a large mixing bowl, and beat in the salt and pepper, and the 1 ½ tablespoons of cornstarch. Slowly add the left over cream to the mixing bowl, and beat until light and fluffy. Next place the entire bowl of mixture in the fridge to cool. After the mixture has cooled (About one hour), remove the bowl from the fridge. Next, using a tablespoon of the mixture at a time roll the fish mixture into golf ball sized balls to be boiled in water. Using a large saucepan full of salted water, bring to a boil then set low to simmer, and add the fish balls to the water for 5 minutes at a low simmer.

Place the finished balls into sterilized jars, and add the STRAINED water from the cooking process to cover the fish balls completely in the jars for later use. Seal and store them in a cool place as you would any canned goods.

Later, these can be served by cooking them in a simple shrimp sauce, dumping the fish balls into the sauce and heating it over a low heat and served with rice or potatoes.

Pan Fried Trout in Sour Cream

This is a great recipe for the campers, especially if you have had some cream go sour on you and you do not know what to do with it. Try this on your next fishing trip.

  • 4 fresh trout (about ½ pound each) cleaned with head and tail left on.
  • Season the fish with Salt
  • ½ cup flour
  • 6 tablespoons of butter
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • ½ teaspoon Vinegar

Preparations; wash the trout in cold water. Pat dry inside and out with a dry clothe. Rub the salt into the cavity of the fish, roll in flour, and shake off any excess. IN a heavy iron frying pan, melt 4 of the 6 tablespoons of butter over high heat. When the butter turns brown and gives off a nutty aroma, lower the heat and place the trout into the pan two at a time, so as not to cool the pan to quickly. Cooking time should be about 8 minutes per side.

Stir in the remaining butter, and scrape the drippings from the pan, then deglaze with the sour cream adding a little at a time.  Cook the cream about 5 minutes while stirring constantly, DO NOT ALLOW TO BOIL. Stir in the vinegar, and simmer for 5 more minutes, then pour the sauce over the fish and serve, with your favorite side dish.

Game Birds

Roast Stuffed Duck

This is an awesome way to serve duck and it is easy to do too.

  • 2 Ducks, oven ready
  • 2 Tablespoons red wine
  • Salt and pepper for the birds
  • 2 Oranges, peeled, and quartered
  • 10 Prunes, soaked in water
  • 4 Tablespoons of butter
  • 2 squares heavy tin foil

Pluck and wash the birds in cold running water. Place them in a stainless steel pot and cover with cold water and the red wine, and let stand for at least 2 hours to marinate. Remove the ducks from the water and pat them dry, seasoning them generously inside and out with the salt and pepper. Stuff the ducks loosely with the orange slices and prunes. Lace the openings with a skewer, and string. Preheat the oven to 375 degree F. Place the ducks in the center of the foil, smear with butter and wrap the foil around the ducks, enclosing them completely. Cook for one hour then remove the foil from the ducks and broil until golden brown.

Grouse Soup

  • 2 Large Grouse cleaned and cut into serving pieces
  • ½ Pound Salt Pork
  • 4 Wild Onions, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • ½ Pound Moose meat or stewing meat cut into strips
  • 3 Quarts water
  • 1 Cup young tender cattail shoots cut into 1 inch lengths. (Obviously a spring recipe)
  • 4 small discs of Bannock Buttered and Fried (to serve under the soup)

Wash the birds in cold water and cut into serving pieces. Place the bird into a large soup pot for cooking. Next, melt two Tablespoons of butter, in a fry pan adding the salt pork and onions to cook until the onions are caramelized. Then put the onion and salt pork mixture into the pot with the bird pieces.

Place the strips of Moose meat on top, and cover with 3 quarts of water. Bring to a boil, and reduce heat and simmer for 2 hours, until the meat is about to fall off the bone. Remove the birds, and the moose strips, from the pot and set aside for later, you may cover these with foil to keep warm. Then continue cooking the soup broth for another hour. After remove the soup from the heat and strain through a sieve into a large sauce pan, and add the cattail shoots, and cook for another 15 minutes or until shoots are tender.

Prepare the bannock and fry in melted butter until golden brown. Cut each disc of bannock into four slices, and add to the bottom of a soup tureen. Pile on the bird pieces and cover with soup stock. The moose strips can be used as a side dish or added to the soup.

Yellow Line Yummies

No sense wasting those critters you ran over, coming home from bingo night. The next recipes may not sound appealing to some, however I assure you they can be very decent fair for an open mined prepper. They are a collection of odd recipes by some of the best survivalist that ever lived, those people who lived through the last depression and our pioneers, and ancestors from the distant past. The first recipe is one of my favorites, just for its unusual ingredient. It is a real survival recipe, and is always good to know you can turn anything into a gourmet meal if you have the patience.

French Fried Skunk

If you want to serve something out of the ordinary to your guests, this will certainly fit the bill. How about French Fried Skunk, the meat is usually darker then rabbit, so you can call it wild turkey if you like.

The best thing of this animal is its usually around every night during the warm months, and is found all over the country roads, from north to south. Here is how you prepare it.

  • 2 Skunks, skinned and cleaned (soaked in a salt brine)
  • 1 Tablespoon salt in water to cover.
  • 2 Cups vegetable oil for frying later
  • 2 egg yokes beaten
  • 3 Cups milk or cream
  • 1 ½ Cups of flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 Tablespoons baking powder

Clean and wash the skunk, making sure to remove the scent glands. Cut the skunk into serving pieces. I usually cut them into 6 pieces shoulders ribs, and hindquarters. You can also cut them as those chicken houses do it, where every piece has a little chunk of solid meat on it still. Prepare a soup pot with enough water to cover the meat, while not allow the water to boil over during cooking. Next, boil the Skunk for about 35 – 40 minutes until tender. Removes any scum from the surface of the water as you cook it. In a separate bowl, combine the other ingredients together for the batter. Mix the egg yolks, the milk, flour, salt, and baking powder, and beat into a batter. This should resemble cake batter. Heat the vegetable oil in a deep fryer to around 360 degrees. Dip the pieces into the batter and fry them in your hot oil until golden brown. Drain well and serve with seasoned fried potato wedges on the side.

Baked Stuffed Raccoon

This is best with a freshly killed raccoon. As with our previous recipe these critters are abundant throughout the lower 48 states, and even up into lower half of Canada. Here is a great recipe for them.

  • 1 Medium Raccoon (skinned and cleaned of course)
  • 4 Large Onions
  • 4 Strips Salt pork
  • 2 Cups Beef Stock

The Stuffing

  • 5 Large Tart Apples
  • 2 Tablespoons of Butter
  • 1 teaspoon of Cinnamon
  • 1 Cup dry Bread Crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper

Skin and clean the Raccoon. Wash well removing as much of the fat as possible. Place in a large soup pot and cover with salted water, simmer for 30 minutes. Next peel, core, and dice the apples into a mixing bowl. Melt the remaining butter into a small saucepan and add some cinnamon, breadcrumbs, salt, and pepper. Mix well. Remove the Raccoon, and let it cool.

Stuff the raccoon, and sew up the cavity. Place the Raccoon breast down, with the legs folded underneath trussed with string like a roast chicken then place in the roast pan. This is best done with a roasting rack. Drape the salt pork over the back of the raccoon with toothpicks to add flavor. Place the onions beside the raccoon, and season all with salt and pepper.

Bake at 400 degrees F for 10 minutes to brown the meat, then reduce the temperature in the oven to 325 degrees F and add the 2 cups of beef stock and cook for at least one hour or until tender. Making sure you baste every 10-15 minutes with the beef stock to keep the meat from drying out.

My Wild Game Cooking Tips

Bannock

For anyone that needs a simple Bannock recipe check out my article on: How to Make Delicious Survival Bread [[ link will be added adfter the article is published ]]

Preparing Wild Game

I would like to leave the readers with a few tips on preparing wild game. Over the years, I have been fortunate to have some of these tips passed down to me by experienced outdoorsmen, many of the tricks I unfortunately had to learn the hard way though. I want to pass these tips on to you readers, and I hope this makes you appreciate wild game as much as I do.

Some people unfamiliar with proper game handling or preparation will complain about a gamey flavor of their deer. Often they mistakenly blame it on the deer’s age, thinking it was because he was old, this is hardly ever the case with bucks or bulls. Old bucks never get that old in nature. Granted some late season bucks can be a bit worn and tired beat down by the rut, but they started out in their prime.

The beginning of the season these deer were in top shape with plenty of fat on their ribs, but by the end of the rut, the ones in the 4 -7 year range are beat and tired. Some of these bucks will not make it through the winter, after losing to much weight; they often die from the extreme weather. Those people that complain about gaminess have usually been fed an improperly butchered animal. Because game animals such as Deer, Elk, and Moose require a completely different way of handling then Beef or domestic animals do.

The game animal should be bled immediately upon killing it. The blood is what is responsible for the liver taste in some wild meat. What one should also do to prepare a feast of game meat for the more squeamish eaters is soak it in brine over night. The brine can be just simple salt water, with some pickling spice. I use this for the deer family, and for game birds, you may even add some sugar to the salt-water brine. The salt in brine uses a capillary action to draw out the blood from the meat, and works as a way of killing bacteria too.

Thus, the blood will not leave that liver flavor and no… the salt-water brine does not leave a salty flavor either, that is a myth. Although you should remember to rinse the meat after brining it, and pat it dry with a clothe before cooking it, especially if you are trying to brown the meat in a pan for a stew or even a roast. Even a commercial abattoir, will bleed a domestic animal immediately, often while they are still kicking.

Next, the fat on deer is not regular fat, its tallow, and just like sheep’s tallow it is best removed or cooked over an open flame to melt it away, it can taste very waxy to most people. Now when boning out a deer, I try to remove as much of this tallow as you can, if not all of it, most of it. Also, after back at camp or home, and you are wrapping the game in butcher paper, try to trim off all silver skin with a fillet knife.

This is easy enough to do with a little practice. The silver casing is what is wrapped around the individual muscles of these animals. This is absolutely, necessary to remove it before cooking any. This sinew is far too chewy to be eaten, and it shrinks up during the cooking process, like a snare drum. Some hunters leave the outer silver skin on as a protection against freezer burn, and then they removing it just before cooking. In fact, this skin is so tough to chew it was used in the making of bowstrings by the Native Americans for thousands of years… that is how tough it is.

Poor butchering technics also often miss the foul scent glands of these animals. The glands are on all wild deer and pig species. A butcher who is only use to domestic buttering, may not be aware of these glands and where they are located. These scent glands if not removed from the meat especially before grinding it into hamburger or sausage will contaminate the final product, making it inedible.

During the high point of a Rut even if you get your skinning knife on one of these glands it can contaminate the rest of the animal simply by running your blade along it after while skinning it out. This is often the case with the tarsal gland near the rear bend in the leg of the deer. There is also a strong gland in between the major muscles of the hindquarter.

I hope some of you will try these recipes, and let us know what you think of them, and the very least keep them for the future, for when times get tough.

You never know when a skunk might be the only thing you have to eat.

Happy prepping everyone, from

Jack Woods

Survival Medicine 101

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by Daniel Skipper

It has been two weeks since you bugged out and everything was going good, or as well as you could have hoped given the situation, until you found yourself so sick you could hardly function. It’s at this very point, your survival status went from stable to critical and everything you do or fail to do from here forward will ultimately determine life or death.

It is vital you improve your health ASAP just so you can function and fend for yourself in order to maintain the basic essentials you need to survive. Any survival situation is going to be hard in itself but add to that the fact you may be sick or injured and it may have just gone from hard to nearly impossible. Luckily we have access to drugs today which work rapidly enough we can feel improvement in short time and this is important when you have to keep functioning in order to survive.

The secret is knowing what survival medicine really is, what medicines will work best for certain ailments, how to obtain certain medicines, and what to do when you have no medicine available. Survival medicine is more than just taking a pill though; it is being able to treat any ailment and/or injury in a survival aftercare scenario. Like any other aspect of prepping, survival medicine requires a little common sense, some forethought, and just a small amount of time spent utilizing practical research will pay huge dividends.

There is no aspect of survival which is not important and yet survival medicine seems to be more over-looked than nearly any other. When people begin to prepare for an emergency situation they learn quickly to stockpile a laundry list of items but only a small number of preppers actually consider ‘actual medicines’ a prepping essential. Most preppers make the common mistake of stocking up with emergency ‘first aid’ items and very few people consider adding medicines to their caches.

First aid training is certainly valuable and having the knowledge and supplies necessary to stop bleeding is important and very useful, however, even after the bleeding has stopped the treatment has to continue and this is where first aid ends and survival medicine begins. In a normal non-survival situation injury scenario we would stop the bleeding, treat for possible shock, stabilize the victim, and transport for emergency medical care. Of course, in an emergency or especially a SHTF scenario that will simply not be an option and we will be responsible for everything necessary to provide the best possible chance of recovery. Your knowledge of what ‘survival medicine’ actually is and having availability to absolute ‘medicinal’ necessities is an important tool in any prepping arsenal.

What is Survival Medicine?

In any situation we find ourselves in we need to be able evaluate and react accordingly and in a survival scenario it is pertinent we be able to diagnose injuries and illnesses and provide initial and long-term treatment to ourselves or others in our party. Survival medicine entails everything done from injury/illness discovery to end of treatment. First aid, wound/illness treatment and care, medicinal care, and aftercare are all part of survival medicine which will be necessary for a full and successful recovery.

Survival Medicine is such a very broad subject which consumes so many possible scenarios and treatment possibilities it only makes sense to know as much as you can and prepare as well as possible. Don’t allow yourself to be limited by the term ‘first aid’ and simply believe everything can be cured with a box of bandages and a bottle of aspirin. By all means we need to stockpile as much medical supplies as possible because there is no idea how long we may find ourselves bugged out and unable to find more.

Simply put, one first aid kit will not be enough. If you find you need a roll of gauze to properly bandage a wound, you will eventually need more than just one roll of gauze. Be sure to have a better than adequate supply of anything/everything first aid and you will put yourself in a better position of survival but the knowledge of proper wound/illness treatment and care is essential.

All the initial emergency first aid in the world is useless if a wound/illness goes unattended and proper care is not given. A simple scratch, sinus infection, or even a bruised foot can be as deadly as a severed artery if not properly diagnosed and cared for; it is vital to your survival to be prepared for anything which may arise and be able to treat everything which may have an adverse effect on your health.

Also, always be ready to think outside the normal box of what we consider to be modern medicine. For thousands and thousands of years humans have been treating illnesses and injuries without modern medicine so there are other non-typical ‘medicines’ or remedies available if you know where to look.

What Medicines do I Stockpile?

First, you need to inventory every medication you and/or your family members take on a daily basis. If you have HBP (high blood pressure) and take medication everyday then you would need that medicine in a bug out/survival situation. If you have a child with asthma then you would need that medicine available as well, and so forth. E

very medicine which every member of your family takes and is absolutely essential should be listed. When I say essential I mean medications which are absolutely necessary in order to live. If you are taking Wellbutrin to quit smoking you probably won’t need a six month supply or if your child takes medicine for ADHD so he can make better grades in school, well you might not need it. Medicines which are also essential are antibiotics like Penicillin and Amoxicillin for viral infections, and Bactrim which works well for bacterial infections.

There are also drugs like Doxycycline and Minocycline which work well for urinary tract and kidney infections. Of course, you should have a good supply of common household pain reliever/fever reducer like Tylenol or Aleve and also over the counter flu and cold medicines are good to include in any medical supply cache. Atropine is included in my cache because I have a son who is extremely allergic to wasp and bee stings so special attention should be given to those types of situations. I would suggest everybody include it simply because of its accessibility and affordability and is vital in the treatment of anaphylactic shock caused by accidental poisoning from ingestion or exposure to poisonous substances and this includes a number of poisonous plants, animals, and reptiles.

Outside of these medications, be sure to stock up on multivitamins to compensate for any vitamin deficiency your body may be suffering which you may not be aware of until it’s too late. Proper vitamin intake is an important part of sickness prevention because of their effect on the immune system so it is essential you have them in any emergency survival situation. Finally, make sure you have plenty of rubbing alcohol/antiseptic, hydrogen peroxide, triple antibiotic ointment, petroleum jelly, ear drops and eye drops.

Now you need to do the math and determine just how long you want to be sure you have meds should something happen. If you take a pill a day and you want a six month supply then of course you would have to have 180 pill count. So, if you take six pills a day you would need 1,080 pill count to cover you for six months. As you can see by now we are talking about a lot of medicine when you only consider what you have to take on a daily basis, add to that all the other medicines you might need or want to include and it is a task to accomplish based on availability and affordability. However, it can be completed.

Where Do I Find the Survival Medicines I Will Need?

Of course, if you have meds you take on a daily basis you probably only have just enough to finish out the prescription which was written. In order to have the pill count you need in an emergency survival situation you will likely have to get creative and talk to your doctor about increasing your prescription count.

I take a medication I absolutely can’t survive without and have a physician who actually understood where I was coming from when I explained to him about survival preparedness. He increased my prescription by double and in six months I had a six month supply of that drug available.

If a physician writes you a prescription they know you need to survive then they should also understand your concerns and will certainly try to resolve the issue if he/she can. Anything is available on the internet in this day and age so you can find your meds online but personally I don’t recommend it; unless you are absolutely sure the site can be trusted then avoid it. Through a little research, however, you can find websites who are legitimate and can supply your meds. Do whatever you have to do to find your meds now or die trying to find them later.

The best starting point in gathering the other essential survival medicines you need is in your medicine cabinet. Approximately ten years ago I cleaned out a medicine cabinet and filled a shoe box with half full pill bottles of antibiotics, allergy meds, sinus meds, and pain meds. Since then that shoe box is now five boot boxes filled with medicines.

You may be under a little more time crucial pressure about prepping and not have ten years to forage your medicine cabinet so you can also try picking up antibiotics and diuretics through other sources. One place I have found to be a great place to pick up large quantities of medications is the local county cooperative (aka feed store). In most areas the local co-op is the go to source for farmers and animal enthusiasts for their feed, tack, and yes medicines. In most cases, many of your co-ops supply both small and large quantities of animal medicines so the more you buy the better the deal.

There are certain Sulfa drugs which I have purchased to treat Salmonella strains in calves in both pill form and injectable; the same drugs are given to humans to treat the same bacteria. Be sure to read everything about the medicine on the flip-out before buying it; not all do but some injectable medicines for animals may also contain other drugs. Besides your local co-op you can also find medicines in some of your nationwide farm supply chain stores and pet stores, though they seem to be a little strict with policies regarding medications and availability.

There are very few drugs which are given to humans which are not also given to animals though the dosages may be somewhat higher and quantity is likely to be fewer. If you have a good relationship with your vet and he is fairly busy you can walk in and tell him you need an antibiotic for your dog and he will likely hand you a bottle with the dog’s name on it. Of course, you will certainly have to bring your dog in a few times before he will begin to treat you this way.

My vet literally told me he didn’t need to see my dog unless it was life or death or something which I couldn’t tend to myself. As long as he knew the dog was caught up on shots and heartworm treatment he had no problem ‘helping’ me treat my dog. Take into consideration a canine or feline will probably take less of a specific medication at a lower dosage so access to a high pill count may not be quickly attainable.

There are medication sources where you can find the medicines you need if you put in a little research and footwork. Also, you will pay half the price buying the animal version instead of the human version even though chemically it is the same drug. Take your time and do your homework and do whatever it takes within reason to find the survival medicine you will need to ensure success in any emergency survival situation.

What If I Don’t Have Any Medicine?

Don’t panic! First, take a deep breath and evaluate your situation, diagnose the symptoms, and then we will know what you need to do to treat the illness. Sure, it would be great if you had taken the time to prep properly and had thought to stock up on your medicines; unfortunately you have no medicines at all and you have been without almost a week.

The first few days it had been on your mind you were without meds but you had not really felt any different, but after five days without your meds you had begun to suddenly feel really ill. Of course, you had never been a week without meds so you had no idea what a hypertensive crisis would feel like until now; you had never experienced any of the normal symptoms associated with unmaintained HBP when it reaches crisis level.  With a very severe headache, severe anxiety, shortness of breath and a nosebleed you realized you were in dire need of medicine and if not soon you would be in an extremely life threatening situation.

Luckily for you, sometime in the past you had learned of a natural remedy which also works for HBP. You had never tried it because it was an old Native American remedy but you remembered it was from a plant called Hummingbird Blossom or Buck Brush. You remembered exactly what the plant looked like from the very unique hanging fragrant blooms and you had seen some earlier this morning as you were out looking around; realizing what it was, you picked the flowers and leaves and continued on your way.

Later you boiled some of the flowers and leaves and after steeping for about five minutes, you drank the tea you had made. In just a short time you began to feel better and your symptoms began to improve and a dangerous medical crisis had been diverted. Relieved form knowing you had found a medicine you needed you were free from the worry of not having your normal medication and able to focus on survival.

This is just an example of what is available to us if we simply study the Native American’s uses of certain plants and their healing properties. Not only is Hummingbird Blossom used in treatment of HBP, but the Cherokee also used it to treat cysts, fibroid tumors, inflammation, and mouth/throat problems. Present day research has concluded that this plant does indeed work greatly for treating high blood pressure and lymphatic blockages. Hummingbird Blossom is just one of hundreds of plants the Cherokee learned was essential to good health and extremely valuable treatment for certain illnesses.

If you know you are going to bug out to specific position then it is wise to do some field study in that area and inventory specific plants you have available to you. Research the plants and see if they are among the plants used in natural medicine by Native American tribes; you will be surprised at what you learn you have in your own backyard and amazed at how these plants were used to treat illnesses.

Knowing there is a medicine available for any illness in a survival scenario is extremely valuable and is key in your success; anything you can add to your prepping arsenal which greatly improves your chance of survival should be studied, understood, and utilized if needed. Study your bug out location, find and mark these plants if they are available and learn what they are used to treat and how to properly prepare them. When you are wet, cold, and running a 102 fever is not the time to be learning how to make a medicine through trial and error. Preparation is key in survival and essential in successfully treating illnesses for you and your family. Learning the following plants in your area may save your life.

Pull Out a Sticker aka (Greenbriar)

Full of vitamins and minerals, the leaves of the Greenbriar can be boiled and steeped to make a tea which assists in blood purification and urinary tract infections; modern researchers have also noted the positive affect the tea also has on arthritis. The leaves and bark can be boiled and mashed into an ointment which can be used in the treatment of minor cuts and burns. Note the roots of the Greenbriar are full of starch, the berries are very sweet, and like many other plants listed here may also be used as a food source.

mullein plantMullein

This plant was used by Native Americans because of its power to help treat asthma, chest congestion, and other respiratory issues. By burning the roots and leaves of Mullein and inhaling the smoke you can ease breathing and congestion problems by expanding the airways. Modern research has shown the Mullein has a soothing effect on mucous membranes. You can also boil the roots and leaves and use to soak feet, legs, hands, and arms to reduce swelling of painful joints. Because of these anti-inflammatory properties, it also assist in soothing painful and irritated skin and muscles. The flowers may also be boiled and steeped to make a tea which can be used as a mild sedative.

yarrow plantSquirrel Tail aka (Yarrow)

Known widely for its blood clotting properties, the fresh crushed leaves of the Yarrow can be applied to open wounds to stop bleeding. The juice extracted from the plant’s leaves and stems can be mixed with water and ingested to stop internal stomach and intestinal bleeding. The tea from the leaves was also used to help ensure proper digestion, correct abdominal issues and function, and kidney and gallbladder problems. Ointment made from the leaves and stems also help clear acne and works great for calming minor skin irritations such as itching, rashes, sunburn, and chapped skin.

roseJisdu Unigisdi (Wild Rose)

For thousands of years the rose and members of the rose family have been used for their natural healing abilities; the Wild rose was a particular favorite of the Cherokee. The fruit is a great source of vitamins and especially Vitamin C and is known as a great cold and flu remedy. The tea steeped from boiling rose hips would be used to stimulate bladder and kidney function. Tea made from petals can be sued to soothe a sore throat and tea steeped from the root of a wild rose can prove to help with diarrhea. The wild rose petals are a great food source and often used in jams, jellies, and preserves.

SumacQua lo ga (Sumac)

One of the most versatile plants when it comes to natural healing properties, the Sumac offers medicinal value from literally every part of the plant. Ripened berries can be made into a tasty beverage extremely rich in Vitamin C and the tea steeped from leaves is an outstanding fever reducer. Sumac leaves can be crushed and mashed into an ointment which aids in the relief of poison ivy and poison oak rash. Reports have been made pharmaceutical companies are developing drugs and supplements which will be used in lowering and maintaining cholesterol levels.

Big Stretch (Wild Ginger)

The Cherokee used the root of the wild ginger to make tea which was used to aid in digestion and other stomach related issues such as intestinal discomfort caused by gas, upset stomach, and colic. Another Native American tribe, the Meskwaki, use the crushed stems to steep and make drops which relieved earaches.

blackberriesBlackberry

Besides what we know of the Blackberry as a delectable food source, it is also the oldest known Cherokee remedy for stomach aches. The root can be boiled and made into a tea which will help reduce swelling in joints and tissues. The root can be mashed and sweetened and used as a cough suppressant and also helps soothe a sore throat. The leaves of the Blackberry plant can be mashed and rubbed on gums to help stop bleeding; some say this can also be attained by simply chewing the leaves.

These are just a small number of what literally could be hundreds of plants in your area which have a legitimate benefit to you in an emergency and/or survival situation. As I noted earlier, many of these plants are multipurpose and can be used for medicinal purposes and as a food source as well as other uses.

Also take note I used the term plant throughout this article although many of these plants and others are considered to be herbs. When you begin to research natural remedies or Native American medicine be sure to look for information under a variety of search topics.

There is a near endless amount of information available on the internet on this subject so get in there and see what you can use to help ensure you are covered in the event of injury or illness in a survival situation.  Peterson’s Field Guides are a very helpful tool in the identification of plants in the field; they are available online and are well worth the cost. Get the guide, get out in the field around your bugout position, find these useful and valuable sources of natural medicines and learn how to use them.

In the scope of preparation and knowing ultimate survival literally depends on you and what you know, there is no excuse for dying because of lack of medicine; medicine is available if you know where to look, what it looks like, and how to use it.

Disclaimer

The information in this article is provided “as is” and should not be mistaken for or be a substitute for medical advice. Always consult your physician before trying any of the advice presented on this page. Always seek the help of a professional when delivering a baby. Neither the autor nor modernsurvivalonline.com or the company behind the website shall be held liable for any negative effects of you putting into practice the information in this article.

The Best Rifle for Survival

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by Jack Woods

Well, its time for some more back woods wisdom from me, Jack Woods. We all have our opinions on our favourite rifle for our favourite job. However, the question here is; what is the best prepper rifle?

If… you only can have one rifle in your bug out bag, what would that be Jack?

What would it be… is it that large calibre rifle that the often, very knowledgeable preppers like to see in those bugout bags? Is it the biggest, the nastiest full auto machine gun that we can find. Perhaps a Rifle capable of mowing down wave upon wave of brain eating zombies, hordes of the oozing- infectious undead. Fellow citizens suffering with some designer Ebola viruses created in a secret lab, right down the street in Main Street USA. A Psyop gone terrible the nightmare they keep warning us about.

Alternatively, on the other hand is it the best rifle able to perform most jobs well enough when the time comes. Like, feed our families, and maybe drop a zombie or two when presented with one.

Custom multi Calibre/Barreled rifles that are available

Now, aside from the obvious over and under models of custom guns by those talented old time gunsmiths like “Krieghoff, Carl Stiegele, or even Savage Arms, theirs are usually referred to as the “Model 24s”. Most are rare guns mostly made by the high-end designer rifle companies?

We often wonder whether they are a myth, to good to be true. How can a rifle do it all? Maybe they are just another example of an all season tire that doesn’t perform well in any season. These fancy checkered stocked shiny hunting irons are being produced with some very expensive tropical woods and gold plated triggers, but sorry they are are not the topic of this article.

These rifles from the fancy sporting makers have dual barrels that often have a shotgun barrel on top, and small calibre like a .22 underneath it, or some have a large bore rifle on top and a 410 under that. Some even have as many as 4 barrels in total. However, I am doubtful about how long you could stand and aim such a weapon accurately. They are beautiful to look at and great, but lets talk about what we can commonly find on most gun store racks, in our lower price range, CHEAP.

Let us look at a rifle as more of a tool than a defense weapon too.

What do you need ideally?

Well let us see, using my infallible back woods reasoning here, lets try to narrow it down a bit. First, we need to consider the scenario of the collapse. What kind of collapse is it? One collapse might be something different to one person then to another. It may simply be that your local Seven Eleven has run out of wonder bread, and cold beer or perhaps it is a short-term food shortage down at the Quickie-Mart, due to a truckers strike.

Alternatively, maybe it is a Katrina hurricane like aftermath, were the National Guard is called in. On the other hand, some kind of apocalyptic Mad Max home coming, that is unfolding uncontrollably across the entire globe, with insurrection, martial law, armoured vehicles roaming the streets, cholera, or some other nasty epidemic. Future calamities, like these hat present themselves this way will create an entirely different set of challenges to most trying to survive, be it by him or her self, or when trying to hold a frightened family together.

The Short List of Survival

Therefore, I always like to start with my favourite list of necessities for your long-term survival.

THE SHORT LIST:

Water

Food

Shelter

Heat

Safety

(Not necessarily in that particular, order either.)

The Zombie Apocalypse

If you ever to find yourself in one of the aforementioned scenarios, and you are missing any one of the five items from the above list, you will understand what I mean by long-term survival. For instance, you might want to get out and procure said essential item right away, while you still can.

Before the looters take it all. That is to say, do it, get out into whatever calamity you find yourself in, which usually happens under the strife of some social upheaval. They always are manifesting themselves in some violent form or another. Your objective is to then try, and flee town for higher ground and some safety for your family. At least until things blow over.

This can be a dicey maneuver for a lone prepper, and trying to do this little reconnaissance move unarmed, and during the heat of an uprising or total collapse, can be impossible. Perhaps there is looting, or better yet, a riot, or maybe there are predatory gangs of miscreants wandering the streets, hunting humans for sport. Yet, all you really need is to do sneak down to the corner store and procure some milk for the wee one who will not stop driving your wife nuts.

This is how that scene could play out.

Your choice of prepper rifle is… “Well easy then”, the man behind the counter slides the rifle across the glass counter, with a squeal. “The rifle of choice is an AK-47 still smelling of the gun oil it is packed in, or an AR-15 with well-stocked 30 shot banana magazines taped back-to-back, and ready for action. Better, yet,” he then heaves from the rack behind him a monster of a gun a flat black M-60 complete with a 6 foot bandolier chock full of shiny 30 calibre brass cartridges. You can see yourself now in the blazing sun of the aftermath. Can’t you?

You fondle it, “This will work nicely to deter those crack heads and losers down at the quickie- mart, simply by its merit of pure intimidation”.

As soon as they take one look at that babe hanging from your shoulder, they will not be messing with you my friend, trust me.

Now for My Devils Advocate

What if on the way back from the corner store you come upon a covey of quail or fuzzy bunnies, or maybe that big city vermin, the common pigeon. What luck an entire flock has alighted on that statue of that dead president you always-hated, right there in your favourite park.

Then you think to yourself, “darn, I forgot to pick up that can of baked beans and Vienna sausages for the kiddies”.

You don’t, want to make your way back through those zombie hordes surrounding the Quickie-mart, or wade across those cholera-choked drainage ditches, all for a simply can of beans, do yeah?

Then it hits you, “I have a weapon, sure it’s a might bit big for the job, and not for hunting but who cares? Besides, the little woman has been hankering for some squab. She said so just the other day. So why not stop by the park test it out on a bevy of pigeons. Turn the shiny new 30 cal. Monster that you purchased at “Big Bob’s Battle Emporium”, into a fowling gun”, why not?

“Besides, it’s on the way, and those gang bangers and crack heads won’t bother me for sure”, not while you are spraying the park for pigeons, with your new toy.

You think to yourself, “This is a great idea”, and all seems right with the world again; except after you gather the remains of your quarry in one of those plastic bags from the Quickie-Mart. You arrive home, and present the prize to the little woman. She looks at you disappointed, then at the bag of gore and feathers, then back to you. You swell up proudly. Unbeknownst to you, you have just presented her with what you thought was a fine dinner. She waves the dripping plastic bag of mush like a hypnotist waves a gold watch, back and forth in front of your vacant stare. You smile ear-to-ear thinking “what a great provider I am”.

Then you really see it… for the first time.

The bag of bird parts, and your ever-beautiful ever patient honey bun glaring back at you with that look… you know the one… the one she uses when you have disappointed her yet again.

She then points her trembling finger at the barricaded door, and before you even have a chance to pull your combat boots on, she swings the bag at your head containing what should have been some fine dining for you and the missus, but now have cat food in it for Mr. Tickles. How can this be?

Your intentions were right on. It was such fun spraying the ex president’s effigy with a barrage of gunfire, unseen since the battle of Iwo Jima. Never realizing as you collected up the thoroughly masticated pigeon parts, looking as if they went through a Cuisinart, that bag now looks so silly in her hands, you look away.

How did this happen?

You stare back at her confused, you wondering why is life so unfair. Surely, the nice man with the tattoo that read KILLER on his bicep would not have steered you wrong. After all it is a reputable downtown gun store surely he, was telling the truth when he sold it to you. You spent all afternoon reliving his old combat stories from Iraq, and it was all in good fun. He said it was the best weapon for anything you might come across during an apocalypse. Your only decision was whether to get it in flat black or desert storm beige. Eventually settling on the black, after Killer told you how he used it to mow down that Taliban hooch.

Back to Reality

I know this may come as a surprise to some of you preppers out there, and perhaps this way of thinking, does go against every John Wayne moving ever made, but BIGGER AIN”T ALWAYS BETTER when it comes to food gathering…

Affordable Choices

Now lets look at the affordability factor of your rifle of choice. I assume there is a budget in mind, unless you are independently wealthy. When it comes to basic surplus military rifles and there are plenty around nowadays. Even the low-end sporting models of rifles are cheap enough to buy if you are not seeking brand new.

They are in pretty much the same price range with either choice of low-end sporting model or surplus bolt action. A novice prepper can certainly pick up any one of the older 30 calibres like a Lee-Enfield, or a 30-06 US, or even a 30 calibre Garand or some NATO rifle in the 7.62 range. Getting any post WWI or WWII surplus rifles easily, they run under $400 bucks nowadays but check, the rifling to be sure they are not bagged-out. You might want to find some reproductions instead, like brand-new copies as long as the fact that they are not being made in American does not bother you.

They are new, and right out of the box, or maybe something cheaper like a .22 rifle. Perhaps an old used Coey or Martin .22 calibre for under $250 bucks. Therefore, if this fits into your price range we still are on the right track.

Ammunition Availability

Now lets consider ammo, and availability here and the cost of ammunition. The cost of ammo and availability after such an end of the world collapse will most likely begin to rise soon after it happens, due to supply and demand. Some of the most popular calibres out there from North America are according to Sales in 2014 by Federal Ammunitions are as follows:

In order of popularity;

  1. .223 Remington/5.56mm NATO
  2. .308 Winchester/7.62x51mm NATO
  3. .30-’06 Springfield
  4. .30-30 Winchester
  5. .270 Winchester
  6. .243 Winchester
  7. .300 Winchester Magnum
  8. 7mm Remington Magnum
  9. 7.62×39
  10. .300 Winchester Short Magnum
  11. .22-250 Remington

(I cannot help noticing that they do not list 22 Long Rifle here at all.)

Reloading your own Ammunition

Now, a true gun enthusiast, one that reloads his or her own ammunition might not care about availability after a collapse. Reloading can save plenty of dough if you shoot plenty of targets. Though I am sure if you are an avid shooter, you have probably stopped reading this article several paragraphs ago, with the pigeon story, and so be it. However, I bet this rant will still give even an avid gun enthusiast something to consider when choosing another rifle for their bugout bag.

Either way, if you are still are reading, then great, nice to still have you here. I must assume that if you are that novice, and you do not have a thousand dollars worth of reloading equipment in your bugout bag, and you do not make your own gunpowder, and food is still a major consideration for your rifle of choice. Then we have a different situation here, and not the same as the old time veteran survivalist, or well-heeled prepper finds himself or herself in.

For instance, the equipment alone for reloading your own ammo, can run you minimally, as much, if not more then the rifle that you just purchased. So, do not forget for a minute that the “reloader-guy” the prepper with everything might be better off, as he needs some of those tiny little projectiles we call bullets and a lot of new primers as well as a pound or two of smokeless powder to reload that ammo he or she makes for their sheer enjoyment.

Unless, you are SO SKILLED, you can make your own modern smokeless gunpowder, and cast your own bullets from old car batteries or the chimney lead off the neighbour’s house. So, if you can’t, and I recommend you do NOT try this yourself by the way, without some guidance. If you do not know how to make gunpowder already, and you still want to learn, then watch some one else first, because at best, it will not light and at worst, it will light when you do not want it to, and there goes the damage deposit.

Tried and True Black Powder

Perhaps soon I will write an article about homemade black powder for the future for you guys, but not now.

Black powder is one thing, and a black powder rifles are certainly a fine consideration as an alternative weapon for when things get scarce. Like ammunition, and factory made bullets. A smooth bore black powder gun with a flintlock can be used any old day, with just a lead ball or shot, even just about anything that fits inside it in a pinch will do. However, either way, black powder is relatively easy to make at home, unlike smokeless powder.  So read, read , read before trying it.

My Experience

Yet, this is not the original question is it? The original question was what is the best prepper RIFLE.

In short, and in my humble opinion since I am the one writing this article, is this. What is the best calibre for all around use?

Here is my honest opinion, be it as it may…

First, what makes me an expert on this you ask? Well nothing really, I guess. I have not lived through an apocalypse or even killed any zombie hordes, or even lived through an economic collapse, great enough to cause a long-term food shortage. Nevertheless, I have lived in some very rural areas of wilderness; where it was necessary to hunt or gather food for a living.

Taking from the wild surroundings, and preparing it each fall for the winter, usually just before freeze up. I have also, made black powder at home, and reload my own match grade ammunition for my rifles. I own half a dozen rifles and several shotguns, as well as many handguns too. I have been a hunter and a trapper all my life, and have lived well off the land, at least for my meager 53 years. So the answer finally, what is my favourite calibre of rifle you ask…. Drum roll please…

My Choice

The .22 Long Rifles, TA-Daaaa…

I can almost hear the crickets and groans of disappointment from the readers, but here’s why I chose this often over looked rifle:

To begin with, it is reasonably priced. Most .22s can be picked up used for less then $200.00 bucks. Certainly, that is within our budget. The ammo is readily available anywhere in the world. You will find it from the far north all the way to the tips of the Dark Continents. It is certainly the cheapest and no less available then any other ammo, due to the recent shortages in North America. I will not get into that right now. DHS might be hogging it I guess.

Next, it is the least expensive per round to buy of any kind, and averages about  .05 cents a cartridge, if you buy bulk. That means you can buy as many of the tiny little buggers as you can afford, and no reloading required. This calibre is very versatile, and works across a wide range of practical hunting applications. Birds, small game, varmints, and yes in a pinch even larger non-lethal game animals such as small deer and feral pigs. You might even be able to afford one that takes .22 magnum and .22 long rifle cartridges. (MY WAIVER IS: Although using small calibre on large game is immoral and illegal in most any country. And I would only endorse it in a dire situation of a family starving.)

Nevertheless, all of these aforementioned tasty critters are potential food for the prepper’s pot. Lets face it, if we look back to the original list of five basic human needs. Food is definitely way up there for any prepper. The .22 rifles can still be used for a self-defense too. No, it will not cut a zombie in half with one shot, but it is small enough to be used by everyone in your family. That means Mom as well as the kids are not going to be afraid to pull the trigger when the time comes. Another bonus is its power; it is certainly enough to easily drop a pigeon or two at the park, pecking around those dirty hypodermic syringes in the grass.

Well, let us see does the mighty, .22 rifle also has a fair shooting range for its tiny size, but yes it does, and it still packs a punch too. Its able to kill small game out to 200 yards on a good day. Unfortunately, the arch of this tiny calibre resembles more of a rainbow then a straight line, at that distance. However, anyone who has shot gophers on the back forty, or squirrels out of some tall trees will attest to being able to do it with ease.

The newer .17 HMR arguments

I am not going to debate the .17 HMR caliber’s velocity with anyone here or argue stats with those who own these rifles. They are not common enough in most areas and therefore I have ruled them out, and will not being considered them here for that reason. Therefore, the champion and still my choice for best rifle for a prepper in my honest opinion one that you can and should be able to use to feed the family everyday, the .22 long rifle. Because, lets face it that is the number one consideration in any prepping situation, feed the spouse and kiddies.

My Opinion about defense

Therefore, in my now frequently over stated and forever contradictory humble opinion, I will say this one and salient fact. Unless you are a trained warrior and hanging around with a platoon of other trained warriors, you are probably NOT going to be fending off an onslaught of brain eating zombies by yourself. Just you and the missus in some twisted version of the Last stand at the Alamo you firing away and the kids and Mom reloading your M-60 while you swap it out for the AK-47 you got thrown in at “Big Bob’s Battle Emporium”, I don’t think so.

However, WHAT you most likely ARE GOING to be doing, is trying to survive by being stealthy, using those evasion apache ambush tactics from that Calvary survival book of 1865. (Or like us lay persons, you will be using the reliable running away tactic, with you and your kid’s arms pin wheeling as Mom tries to keep up.)

Whatever way you shake it, the zombie hordes are not getting you, and your family. They duck into a drive through car wash, and the kids shake them using those revolving doors at derelict shopping mall. Then, you and your love ones quietly bugger off to somewhere safer, and with less hostile horizons about you. Go now, get out, ride off into that sunset, well past the blazing apocalyptic burning city skyline, and get the hell out of dodge people.

Although most likely you will still find that there are not tasty cakes hanging from the branches of trees out there, and the term out in the woods means just that out in the woods. The inevitable fact is this, these .22 rifles are relatively light, they’re cheap, they shoot well, and they are easier to run with when zombies are chasing you, and just fine for shooting grey squirrels, or red, or what ever you prefer; from out of that pine tree at 50 yards.

What more could a prepper possibly want, and when you get to the woods, in any event, you and your .22 rifles, are going to be the best of friends. Because it is the best tool for the job, even the tiniest creatures, DO taste far better then nothing at all.

What do we have so far fellow preppers?

How about another list of the Pros and Cons of a .22 rifle. Just before I conclude this:

Pros for .22 Rifle Cons against the .22 Neither good nor bad
Ammo is cheap can buy 500 hundred rounds at Wal-Mart for less then $25/ box

 

Great for small game and you won’t need to pick pellets out of your ducks.

 

The whole family can shoot it with ease.

 

Its lightweight makes it easy to carry, for long distances.

 

Very common calibre ammunition, in any country.

 

Cheaper for shooting fish in a barrel.

Sorry won’t cut a brain eating zombie in half with one shot, but can kill a pigeon.

 

Not recommended for large game or zombies for that matter.

 

Not very good for long range shooting.

 

Not very intimidating to the rioters looters, and crack heads, until you shoot a few, first.

 

Not ideal in ever situation but it comes close, you can still kill a zombie if you have to (but you may have to beat him with it too).

Most big calibre rifles are just more expensive then a .22 rifle.

 

If you run out of ammo, both are just an ergonomically designed club, and quite useless.

 

Both types will kill large animals at point blank range. (Do not try this with a .22 on a Grizzly bear though.)

 

Guns aren’t dangerous Zombies with guns are…

 

 

My Conclusion

I know I have not convinced everyone with my back woods logic. Nevertheless, I hope that I raised some valid points here, and entertain a few of you a little bit any way. I’m an avid outdoorsman, I honestly hunt for my own food, and eat what I kill, I always feel munch better prepared to bag some game in the short term with 500 hundred rounds of .22 in my survival bag, and a decent .22 rifle, then having a box of twenty or so 308 rounds and a deer rifle only.

Your chances of finding a meal that very day is far better with a rim fire then seeing a big game animal the first day out. Besides a .22 shot from a tree stand, only twenty feet above the game (Especially a magnum), and right at the old brain pan, is going to kill any small deer or pig, even if unethical or illegal. I contest, those who disagree that with a starving family at home, this gives you that right.

I could be wrong… probably am.

I was never very good at following rules; when my family is hungry, I hunt:

Happy hunting,

The Practical prepper Jack Woods

TRAGEDY IN DALLAS! Five Law Enforcement Officers Killed In Ambush Style Attacks and What the Preparedness Community Can Learn From This Tragedy

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by Van Geste

I heard a great quote recently, “Things do not happen because of us, things simply happen to us.”

For anyone that has not yet heard; late last night and into early this morning Dallas Texas became a war zone.  Four or more snipers took up positions in elevated areas during a Black Lives Matter protest.  They then began to rain down bullets of the Law Enforcement officers who were overseeing the protest marchers.  When the dust settled and the shooting ended (for now) five officers lay dead and up to eleven more had been wounded.

This whole story has been covered at length by all the major global news outlets and most of the alternative media worldwide.  So many talking heads want to stand up and give reasons for these shootings.  Some in the Black Lives Matter crowd say this is retaliation for the shooting for two African American men in the last two days.  Media and activists can say what they want.  However, keep in mind that this post is not about politics but preparedness and what can be learned from a real world SHTF moment in time.

This is without a doubt the deadliest day for Law Enforcement since September 11th 2001.  For anyone of our community reading this who currently resides in the Dallas area, please, stay safe.

For anyone living in the Dallas area last night, this would have been their SHTF moment.  They never expected it and never saw it coming, prepared or not, it makes no difference.  One day it is business as usual and the next it is downtown Baghdad.  This is the true and cruel nature of the quintessential SHTF environment.

As tragic as this shooting is what can we, as the preparedness community, learn from this incident?  First we know that chaos and the S flying at high-speed and impacting the fan can happen at any moment, and as “Murphy’s Law” dictates, when you are least prepared.  Secondly the Dallas-Fortworth Metroplex area has a combined population of over 6 Million people and there are a suspected four shooters.  As of last night the entire city was put into “lockdown”, all DFW area law enforcement was put into active duty and government officials told the citizens to stay indoors, away from windows and not to report to work in the morning.

There were only four suspected shooters.  The FAA has now restricted flights in and out of the DFW Airport and local businesses in the area have been told to secure their doors and not to reopen until and “all clear” has been given.  Again, there were only four shooters.  This also means that supply trucks will not be coming to the local grocery or other retail stores.  Now consider this; if an entire city of 6 plus million people can be brought to a standstill by four crazed, armed shooters, what would happen if there were 10 shooters? 50? 100 even!?  It is not inconceivable.

This is, by definition, the very SHTF scenarios we have all talked about, most likely, on a daily basis:  city locked down, martial law-esk rules in place, no food or retail supply coming in or out and YOU, yes YOU and your family are trapped in a city descending into chaos.  This is not happening in some third world rat-hole, this is happening in Texas!  Let that sink in for a moment.

Third, while this obviously not the full blown collapse, it is what psychologists and researchers call an “observable controlled environment” a mini-collapse if you will.  And, this is something we should all be taking notes on.  If you were currently in this situation, what would you do?  Are you prepared in this particular instance and does this event make you reconsider and reevaluate your preps?  Do you know the best routes out of your city (assuming you live in one) and have you practiced for exiting a large city such as Dallas?  Where do you plan to go and have you packed the appropriate Bug Out Bag for you and your family?  All valid, relevant and critical questions you need to be asking yourself now.  It is my opinion that this tragedy and chaotic aftermath is only the beginning of what is coming to these United States.

Fourth point, all members of the preparedness community need to at all times consider their environment, whether that be a large city such as the Dallas Fortworh area or the side of a mountain in the middle of nowhere.  Regardless of where you live do not automatically think you will be immune to the chaos of a collapsing society.  It took less than a couple of hours for the entire DFW area to descend into chaos; stores were being looted, people were being assaulted and many other instigators/agent provocateurs took to Facebook and Twitter to escalate and inflame the already chaotic state of the city.  Below is such an instance.

black power tweet

This post has since been taken down but you can clearly see how this could entice certain individuals already on the edge and of an unstable mind to carry out more attacks.  In a situation such as this the police will not be coming to save you.  As horrible as that sounds, you are on your own.  Law enforcement will be more worried about securing government areas and their own safety in an arena of a SHTF environment.

In a worst case scenario the local law enforcement will most likely abandon their jobs to head home and protect their own families and I would not blame them for doing that.  They are only human and will do what is in the best interested for their own personal preservation and that of their families.  I cannot stress it enough, YOU WILL BE ON YOUR OWN!

At this point there is something that I believe needs to at least be touched on and that is, “do not under any circumstances strap-up and head out with your rifle and full kit thinking you can aide local law enforcement.”  And, do not get any visions of vigilante grandeur.  This is a recipe for disaster, both for you and for them.  I know most of us would never do this, but trust me every community, no matter how level headed and “civilized”, has That Guy.  That Guy is the one that can get you and yours killed.  Do not follow him, do not be him!

Finally it is important to note that, as stated earlier, no one is immune from the S hitting fan.  The important thing to remember is to make yourself as inconspicuous as possible, become the “Gray Man” during a SHTF situation.  If you are aware of a riot or protest happening, then stay out of that particular area if at all possible.  If you are caught in the middle of it when it happens, attempt to extricate yourself from the immediate area as soon as possible; stay low stay out of site and head in the opposite direction of the action.

This is not cowardice, this is common sense.  Also, make sure your family, if you have one, knows what to do in these kinds of situations.  Plan routes, have meet-up or “rally” points, know and be familiar with the best ways in and around any situation that could arise.  Of course none of us can be prepared at all times for every situation that could fall upon us.  This is just not practical or even possible, but a little preparedness goes a long way and it could just save your life.

In closing I want to again say that if you are in the DFW area, please, please, please, stay safe and take care of your family.  You, whoever you may be, are important to all of us.  I would also like to say that after this whole things comes to a close, it would be of great benefit to all of us if those of you in the middle of this chaos would be willing to give a debriefing afterward.

I am sure there is much we can all learn; “what did you do, were you prepared, what was your reaction and that of your family, did you learn anything about your preparedness and what would you have done differently looking back now.”

Now is a good time to begin to evaluate our own levels of preparedness and listen to those who have lived through their very own microcosm of a SHTF scenario.  We learn not by reading books and blogs but by the experience of others.  Preparedness is a state of mind not a pantry full of food or a full combat load of ammunition (but those certainly don’t hurt).

Yard and Garage Sales Can Be a Prepper’s Best Resource!

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by Megan

Have you ever spent a spontaneous summer day visiting local yard, garage, or estate sales? If so, you know it’s easy to come home with your car full of items you didn’t need but got a great deal on! If spring has sprung in your neck of the woods and those garage and yard sale signs have begun to multiply all over town, have no fear. We’re going to show you how, with proper planning, those local estate and yard sales can be a prepper’s best friend and actually help save your budget instead of blowing it.

Garage and yard sales can be the answer to a prayer for new preppers looking for inexpensive ways to stock that first bug out bag or newly designated bug out location (BOL). But experienced preppers looking to downsize no longer used items to make room for an ever growing stockpile can also get in on the yard and garage sale action by having a sale of their own.

Create your Shopping Supply List

If you’re fairly new to prepping, you should carefully create a comprehensive survival supply and equipment list before you head out looking bargains. You will need to plan for emergency needs in the major categories.

Create a checklist of the items currently in your possession. Make sure you inventory forgotten storage places such as the attic, basement or crawl space, and the garage or shed for possible forgotten items. By this time, you likely have a long list of items that you still need to have in order to feel ready for SHTF.

Prioritize that list according to “must have” and “would be nice to have”. The final result will be your “shopping list” for the coming garage and yard sale season. If it feels overwhelming, you can further rank your must have and would be nice to have columns using a scale, say 1=urgent, 2=crucial but not urgent, 3=necessary but not crucial or urgent. Make sure you store the final checklist on your phone or printed out in your car so that you can check it whenever you are out and about.

Items to Look for at any Sale

The first way that yard sales can be a prepper’s best friend is when you are looking for supplies and equipment to stock your bug out bag or bug out location. It doesn’t make sense to take utensils and other items from your current home to put in your bug out bag or bug out bag location, especially if they are items you use regularly. And there’s no reason to pay full price for new duplicate items that you are going to store when you can find them used at really low prices.

Kitchen and cooking supplies

Stocking your bug out location in advance of a SHTF event is going to be crucial. You won’t have enough time to pack up everything in your home when things get chaotic and you likely won’t have space in your vehicle either. Saturday morning yard sales can be a great resource, with better prices than a thrift store!

Hunting and Fishing Gear

  • Camouflage gear
  • Tackle boxes and contents including fishing line, nets, lures, bobbers, and hooks
  • Fishing poles
  • Bows
  • Trapping supplies
  • Firearms and ammo (depending on gun laws in your state)
  • binoculars

Tools and Gardening Equipment

  • Rakes
  • Hoes
  • shovels
  • Hammers and nails
  • Screwdrivers
  • Wood planers
  • Drills and bits (battery operated)
  • Axes and machetes
  • Scythe
  • Wheelbarrow
  • Hand Plow
  • Pry bar

Reference Books and Homeschooling Supplies

When SHTF and people are desperately trying to reconstruct their lives and feed their families, in all likelihood there will be a significant period of time with no power. This means Google will be gone and those old reference books that detail how to cook from scratch and make things by hand will once again be very useful. Most people naively think that now that Google has arrived, they no longer need printed books. This means you can often find printed books on topics such as:

  • First aid and medical
  • Gardening
  • Plant Identification
  • Cooking, Canning, and Recipes
  • Hunting
  • Dressing and preparing small game

If you’re planning to keep up with your child’s education even when the grid is down and public services are being rebuilt, then you may also want to stock up on homeschooling supplies such as pencils, notebooks, paper, dictionaries, and a thesaurus.

Used Clothing

When SHTF and you have to leave the comfort of your home to travel to your predesignated bug out location or into the woods, you’re going to have a need for extra clothing. Even if you are in a location where you intend to bug in, you may need to perform a lot of repairs and other chores that you weren’t doing when everything was right with the world. Since laundry may be more a chore without electricity, having extra “disposable” clothes you can wear for those dirty or rough chores might be worthwhile.

Look for used clothing and winter accessories such as:

  • Shoes and boots
  • Gloves, scarves, and wool hats
  • Old flannel shirts
  • Old Jeans or shorts
  • Wool socks
  • Blankets and Sheets

Medical Supplies

Many times you can find used or even new medical supplies at yard sales or especially estate sales. Often when an elder family member passes away who has suffered from medical problems for quite some time, families have lots of medical supplies left over that they are happy to sell pretty cheap. Many times you can find supplies that were ordered in bulk amounts and are still new in the package. Look for supplies such as:

  • Crutches
  • Splints
  • ace bandages
  • sterile gloves
  • face masks
  • surgical scissors
  • alcohol wipes
  • syringes
  • walkers
  • oxygen tanks
  • wheelchairs
  • portable toilet chairs

Emergency Supplies

Whether you are preparing for an emergency situation such as a natural disaster or power outage or working toward becoming more self-reliant for a long-term SHTF scenario, remember that “two is one and one is none” when it comes to supplies. Garage sales are a great place to pick up extra emergency supplies such as:

Miscellaneous Items

One man’s trash is another one’s treasure and that is so true when it comes to yard sales, garage sales, and estate sales. As long as you stick to your “shopping list” that you created in the beginning, you can spend the summer adding to your stockpile, even if you’re on a shoestring budget. Before you know it, you’ll be ready to bug out to the wilderness if needed or hunker down and weather the chaos in the comfort of your bug out location.

Here are some miscellaneous items that you may also find:

Hold Your Own Yard or Garage Sale

If you don’t have the funds to shop yard or garage sales or if you’re an experienced prepper who has yet to downsize all those unneeded items around the house, you may want to consider holding your own yard or garage sale.  Having your own garage or yard sale is a great way to get rid of things you no longer need, make room in your house for your ever growing stockpile of supplies, and make some extra money that you can then use to buy more prepper supplies.

Steps for an Effective Yard or Garage Sale:

  1. Purchase storage bins or get boxes and have them ready so that anything you identify as a yard sale item can be priced and go into the bin.
  1. Start saving your plastic grocery bags from the store so you can offer shoppers bags to put their items into during your sale.
  1. Purchase pre-printed price stickers or make your own on your computer and print them out. It’s very important to price items as they go into the bins.
  1. Go through each room of your house over a period of several months or weeks. Pull out anything that hasn’t been used by someone in the past six months to one year. Those items should get priced.
  1. Encourage your kids to go through their toys and items too. If more than one person will be selling their items, make sure your price tags include initials.
  1. Check with your city or township to see if you need a permit to have a yard or garage sale. In most cases permits are free, you just have to register your address and dates of your sale. Make sure that you understand the regulations regarding sales in your local area and abide by them.
  1. Place an ad in the paper at least one week prior to your sale date. You’ll also want the ad to run in the days before and during your sale. Include a description of the items you have that people might look for such as furniture, golf clubs, roller skates, kids clothing, toys, etc.
  1. Advertise online. Post short ads on Facebook in your local area yard sale and garage sell groups. Include a description of what kinds of items you have and photos of individual items or the entire sale once its setup if possible.
  1. Rent or borrow enough tables to set everything out where people can browse through it easily. The more organized your items are, the more people will shop. Separate your items into sections on different tables, household things, toys, books on one table, etc.
  1. Make sure furniture and other “big ticket” items are viewable from the road if possible.
  1. Make your signs using large pieces of poster board. Political candidate signs, (if you can snag them from a previous election period), make great yard sale signs. You can just fold your poster board over the political candidate sign and tape it with packing tape. Write on both sides of the sign. Use big black arrows to indicate which direction drivers should go to get to your sale. Include your address and the dates the sale will be held.
  1. Put your signs up late in the evening the night before your sale starts or in the very early morning hours. Place them strategically at intersections so people can follow the arrows to your sale.
  1. Have a box with a lid to keep cash in during the sale. Start the cash box out with about $20 in small bills and change.
  1. Use a notebook and make a column for anyone who is selling items in the sale. This is how you will track sales to know how much money each person has earned. When you sell an item, look at the initials on the price tag and mark the amount in the proper column. You must be diligent about this so that monies can be divided fairly at the end of your sale.
  1. It’s a good idea to have a canopy or other covered area for your “checkout” area. Have chairs so you can sit in between customers. Make sure you greet customers as they arrive and thank them and wish them a good day when they leave even if they don’t buy anything.
  1. In the evening after your sale ends for the day, you will need to at least cover your items with plastic or some other covering in case it rains. Any electronic items that could be damaged should go back inside and be brought back out in the morning.
  1. At the end of your sale period, count up your cash, subtract the $20 or however much you started with for change. Total the sales for each person by adding up the amounts in their column.
  1. Make sure you go around and collect all your signs after your sale to re-use for the next sale. Call Salvation Army, Goodwill, or another non-profit charity and make arrangements to either drop off any leftover items or have them picked up.

Would you like to write for MSO?

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i want you

Hey everyone,

Since I have a lot on my plate with my survival-related projects, I’d be ver ymuch intersted in having someone help out with the blog. Paid articles, of course.

There’ve been a lot of guest psots on MSO so far, I know a lot of you aren’t just amazing preppers but good writers too. I don’t need fancy writing, what I need is quality content.

If you’re interested, please reply to this e-mail so we can talk. Thanks!

How to Build a Shelter in the Woods

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by Nicholas

Building a shelter is one of your top priorities in any survival situation.  Yes, you need water to keep you hydrated.  You need food to keep your energy levels up.  You need fire to stay warm and cook food.  But a shelter ranks equally as high as those priorities. A good shelter will shield you from the elements and keep you alive, especially in severe weather conditions when just having a fire won’t keep you alive.

But let’s say that you’re stranded out in the wilderness without a tent, tarp, garbage bag, space blanket, or any other kind of a shelter-type building material.  Are you supposed to just give in to extreme weather conditions?

The answer is no, and furthermore, it is possible to build a warm and secure shelter in the wilderness if you didn’t bring materials.  In this article, we’re going to learn about a handful of the different types of shelters that you can build, simply using available natural materials in the wilderness. First, let’s talk about some factors to consider before you build any shelter.

FACTORS TO REMEMBER WHEN BUILDING A SHELTER

Location and time are everything when it comes to building survival shelters because these two things largely determine whether your shelter will keep you alive or whether you will die trying.  Let’s talk about location first.

Safety is the biggest concern when it comes to selecting the location of your shelter.  Avoid building in a location where dead trees or large boulders could potentially fall or roll over your site. You will want to build your shelter within walking distance of water, a basic necessity for survival, don’t build right next to a stream or river as your shelter could be swept away in a flash flood.

Finally, don’t build your shelter out in the open or on top of a hill.  If you do and the wind picks up, your teeth will be chattering all night and you won’t get any sleep.  Constructing your shelter at the bottom of a hill or a ravine could make you the victim of a funnel of high winds or a flash flood.  Instead, build your shelter along the side of a hill in the flattest place possible, and in a place that is somewhat sheltered from rain.

The other major factor to remember when building a shelter is the time it takes to build them.  Shelters don’t just spring up on their own in a matter of seconds.  They take the time to plan and build, which is why you should set aside a minimum of two hours or more before nightfall to build your shelter.  This will hopefully be enough time for you to determine the type of shelter you will build, gather the necessary materials, and then build it.  Give yourself more time if you’ve selected a more complicated type of shelter, if resources are a little scarcer, or if you have a physical disability or injury that could impede your building process.

Now that we have learned about the different considerations to take into account when building any shelter, we will learn about the variety of different shelter options you have available and how to build each one:

A-FRAME SHELTER

The A-Frame is one of the most highly recommended shelters by survivalists due to its simplicity and excellent protection against high winds and rain.

To build the A-Frame, find a pole over six-feet in length. Find two trees roughly the same distance apart (6 feet) and position the pole horizontally between them. For extra security, tie the pole to the trees at both ends.

Next, gather a series of smaller sticks and poles and rest them slanted against both sides of the horizontal pole.  Again, for extra security, you can tie the slanted poles together at the top where they meet.  Next, gather dirt, pine boughs, and leaves and pack them over the slanted sticks for insulation.  Also, use a pile of leaves to make the bedding inside.

Leave a large enough opening at one of the ends of the shelter for you to crawl through, and your A-Frame shelter is complete.

LEAF HUT SHELTER

Also called the debris hut shelter, the leaf hut shelter builds on the principles of the A-Frame, and while it’s more complicated and time-consuming to build, it’s also significantly more insulated and weatherproof.

Begin by finding a pole that is around ten feet in length.  Prop it up on a tree fork, a stump, or a rock so that it sticks up in the air at a slanted angle; secure it with lashings or rocks.  Next, set smaller poles and sticks that have branches along both sides of the pole just as you would do with the A-Frame.  Set as many sticks and poles with branches along the sides as possible so that the branches intertwine.

Next, gather as many leaves, ferns, moss, pine boughs, and other kinds of vegetation as you can find and pack them along both sides of the leaf hut.  Ideally, your hut should be at least two-feet thick with vegetation on both sides.  Set more vegetation on the insides to serve as your bedding, and then construct a fire pit at the opening.

Your leaf hut shelter is now complete.  It will be warmer than the A-Frame due to more insulation but it also requires a lot of vegetation and brush to make, so it can only be done in areas where lots of vegetation is available.

LEAN-TO SHELTER

The classic lean-to shelter is likely the simplest shelter of all time. It is actually just like building an A-Frame shelter with only one side.

As with the A-Frame, set a pole at least six feet long horizontally between two trees.  Instead of setting slanted poles against the horizontal pole on both sides, only do it on the side that faces the wind.  Again, pack the slanted poles with vegetation and construct a bed on the open side.  It won’t offer much in the way of insulation, but it will deflect the incoming wind. If you make a fire on the open side, it can help to keep you warm as well.

RAMADA SHELTER

Also known as the gazebo shelter, the ramada shelter is a shelter that should be constructed strictly in the desert or tropical environments.  In no way can it be considered adequate for temperate or winter climates.  This is because the main purpose of the ramada is to shield the sun and provide you with shade, not keep you warm.

In its most basic form, a ramada shelter is four beams that stick up out of the ground into the air with a tarp over the top to block out the sun.  If you don’t have a tarp, you can use sticks, leaves, and brush. For a more complicated version of the ramada, you can also construct walls on any or all of the four sides to protect against the desert winds.

 

SNOW CAVE

The snow cave is obviously a winter survival shelter, and it should be noted that it can be dangerous.  If it collapses on you, you can be buried alive in the snow and die from a lack of oxygen.  That’s why you should only construct a snow cave if you have a solid and deep bank of snow.

Building the snow cave, however, is simple.  You simply dig into the side of the snow bank to create a tunnel with one low spot in the middle of the tunnel.  Then, continue digging and create a bed at the end of the tunnel to sleep on.  The cold air that travels into the tunnel will collect in the low spot and keep you warm.  Once you’ve dug one or two small holes into the side of the shelter to let oxygen in, your snow cave is complete.

 

QUINZHEE SHELTER

Another type of winter survival shelter is the quinzhee shelter.  Shaped like a dome, the quinzhee is similar in function to an igloo.

Begin by gathering a large pile of snow.  For extra security, you can pile it over some gear underneath a blanket or tarp that you have in the center.  The snow must be packed down and should be two feet thick on all sides.  Next, push one-foot sticks into the dome on multiple sides until you have at least thirty sticks around all parts of the dome.

Dig a tunnel into one side of the dome until you find your gear in the middle.  Inside the tunnel, dig a larger hole until you meet the bases of the sticks.  Punch a ventilation hole through the dome and construct your bedding.  Your quinzhee winter survival shelter is now complete.

 

WEDGE TARP SHELTER

The wedge tarp shelter is built for protection from the winds.  It’s also the only type of shelter in this list that must be built with a tarp rather than using only natural materials. We decided to include it because it’s one of the best shelters out there for deflecting winds.

Stake down two corners of your tarp in the direction of the wind.  Take a rope, paracord, or vine and run it through the center of the opposing side of your tarp and then tie the end up around a tree.  Take your remaining two corners of the tarp and also tie them down toward the ground as securely as possible.

Find some rocks and place them over the edges of the tarp facing the wind and along the sides to better secure it.  Leave the end facing the opposite side of the wind and the tree open so that you can crawl into it.  Use vegetation to make a bed on the inside.  Your wedge tarp shelter is now complete.

 

WICKI-UP SHELTER

The wicki-up shelter is essentially a simplified tipee that is a perfect defense against rain.

To make the wicki-up shelter, collect at least two dozen poles and then use at least three of them to make a tripod by locking them together at the top.  This is your frame.  Continue to set more poles in between the poles of the frame and once they are all set, lash them all together securely at the top.

Insulate the shelter by packing vegetation between the poles and as a bedding on the inside.  There should be enough space on the inside for you to lay down in.  Leave one of the ends open for you to crawl through and construct a small fire at this open end.  With the fire and enough insulation, you’ll be warm and protected from the rain.

 

CONCLUSION

There are many more survival shelters out there that you can build, but these are just some of the most commonly used ones.  Each of them except for the wedge tarp shelter can be built with completely natural materials found in the wilderness, which drastically increases the viability of these shelters in a survival situation.

Remember to give yourself plenty of time for building your shelters and to choose the safest locations possible.  It doesn’t matter how well you build your fort; if it’s in a bad location, it’s all going to be worthless.

All in all, shelter building is one of the top priorities in a survival situation because it’s the only thing that will protect you from extreme weather.  Each shelter serves a different purpose as far as protecting from the elements. Keep each of these shelters in mind and when needed, select the one that will provide the best protection for your environment.

26 Depression Era Recipes You Can Use for Survival

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by Megan

Most people who are preparing for a future economic collapse or SHTF event realize that life as it is today could be radically altered. One of the main things that will change radically if the world experiences another severe economic collapse due to an EMP event or another extended grid-down situation will be diet and cooking methods.

Many preppers are looking to the tried and true recipes of the Great Depression period which began in August 1929 and lingered through approximately 1941 in the United States and Europe. It was the worst recession of the Western industrialized world. It truly altered the way of life for many families. Vegetable gardens were nurtured, clothing was patched and repaired for longer wear, and several generations of families often lived together out of necessity.

Feeding a family following another severe economic collapse, extended grid-down situation, or other SHTF event will be similar to feeding a family during the Great Depression. Some of the lessons surrounding food that were learned back then include:

  • Growing your own food
  • Sharing and bartering food with neighbors
  • Making the best you can from what you do have
  • Being thrifty, re-using, and recycling as much as possible
  • Foraging, hunting, and preserving food will once again become central to meal planning

Shopping in the Depression Era

Shopping in the Depression Era was much different than it is today, especially for lower income and middle class families. Following an EMP or other SHTF event, shipping, trucking, and commercial food manufacturing will again be at a standstill. We may once again have to shop like our ancestors did during the Depression Era.

Preppers will need to buy now and properly store large quantities of things such as beans, rice, flour, sugar, cornmeal, potatoes, and sea salt. Growing your own herbs for seasoning and vegetables to eat will be crucial. Eggs will soon be at a premium, or only available through bartering, if at all. The same will be true for raw milk, cream, butter as well as bacon or pork, and beef. You will need to raise your own chickens, dairy cow, pigs, and beef cows or trade something valuable that you have plenty of to get what you want from someone who does have it.

For those who raise or grow their own food, it will be important to learn how to build a root cellar to extend the life of your harvest for leaner times that may come. Without electricity, storing of dairy and other perishable items will need to be done in something like a  zeer pot “fridge” in hot weather.

Bread & Breakfasts

Breakfasts during the Great Depression Era varied widely according to socio-economic status of the household and what was available at the time. It usually included some kind of dried or baked fruit if fruit was plentiful for the family, a creamy grits cereal or farina cereal, some type of bread and tea or coffee. Milk and eggs were expensive so unless the family raised their own cow or chickens, many meals didn’t include them during the Great Depression.

  1. Milk Toast

  • 1 pint of scalded milk
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 tbsps. Butter
  • 4 tbsps. Cold water
  • 2 ½ tbsps. Bread flour
  • 6 slices dry toast

Put flour into skillet, add water and stir on low heat until creamy. Add paste to milk stir continually until thick. Cover and cook additional twenty minutes. Sprinkle salt into mixture. Add butter in small pieces. Dip slice of toast in sauce, remove when soft. Pour leftover sauce onto toast to serve.

  1. Cornbread in milk

  • 4 cups water
  • 1 cup cornmeal (yellow)
  • ¼ cup flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • 1 Tbsp. sugar

Mix cornmeal, flour, salt, and sugar into a large bowl. Add 4 cups boiling water. Mix thoroughly. Batter should be the consistency of pancake batter. Heat canola or other cooking oil in pan. Add batter to your pan and fry, flip occasionally, until both sides are golden in color. Tear or cut into pieces in bowl, add milk to suit your taste.

  1. Hot milk and rice

  • ¼ to ½ bowl of cooked rice
  • Milk
  • Dab of butter
  • Sugar or honey to sweeten

Mix ingredients and enjoy.

  1. Cornmeal mush with milk

  • ½ cup cornmeal
  • 1 cup water or bone broth
  • Leftover bacon grease

Mix cornmeal with bone broth or water and allow to sit overnight. Form into loaf pan. Keep in refrigerator. Slice and fry in bacon grease. You could also mix ½ cornmeal and ½ boiling water, let cool and form into a patty and then fry in grease (no overnight soak required). Pour milk over cornmeal.

  1. Sugar bread

  • 1-2 tbsps. Sugar
  • Butter
  • Homemade bread

Spread butter on bread and sprinkle with sugar. This was definitely a treat only if things were going well and sugar was plentiful.

  1. Sugar Cookies and Coffee

  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 3 eggs (beaten)
  • 1 ½ to 2 cups flour (for texture)
  • Pinch of salt

Beat eggs and sugar and then mix in the flour well. Roll cookies and score with a knife. Bake in oven at about 300 degrees until golden.

  1. Oatmeal Pancakes

  • 2 cups oatmeal
  • 1 tbsp. melted fat
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 egg beat in 1 cup of milk

Mix above ingredients and add 1 cup sifted flour and 1 tsp baking powder. Beat well. Cook on hot griddle.

  1. Spider Corn Bread

  • 2 cups sour milk
  • 1-1/2 cups corn meal
  • 1 tsp. soda
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Combine all dry ingredients first, then pour in milk and well beaten eggs. Add butter to cast iron pan to grease pan. Once pan is hot, pour in the mixture. Cook in hot oven for twenty minutes. Serves six.

  1. Potato Pancakes

  • 2 cups hot water
  • ½ cup of milk
  • 2 cups of flour
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups chopped potato
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 5 tsp. of baking powder

Clean potatoes with the skins on and parboil (pre-cook) them for 8-12 minutes. Skin potatoes and then grate or chop in food processor. In the Depression Era it was also common to use leftover mashed potatoes instead. Mix milk, potatoes, salt, and eggs, together. Sift baking powder with flour into wet mixture.  Continue blending until smooth. Use hot water to thin batter if needed. Drop onto greased hot griddle, flip as needed.

  1. Fifty-Fifty Biscuits

  • 2 cups corn meal (can use rice flour, fine ground peanuts, or ground soy beans)
  • 4 tablespoons shortening
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 to ½ cups liquid

Sift flour, cornmeal, salt, and baking powder, twice. Use cold shortening and use a knife to integrate it into the mixture, finish by rubbing it in with your hands. Quickly mix using cold liquid (milk or water) and form into a soft dough. Lightly flour a wooden board and roll dough into a ½ inch thick sheet. Use a tin can to cut dough into round pieces. Sprinkle a shallow pan with flour and place rounds slightly apart from each other. Bake 10-15 minutes until golden.

  1. Split Pea Pancakes

  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 2 cups split peas
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne
  • 2 tbsps. pork drippings
  • 1 tsp salt

Soak peas overnight, cook till tender. Chop using food processor and mix all ingredients in. Bake on greased hot griddle.

  1. Fresh Bread

  • 4 cups flour
  • 2 cups warm water
  • 2 tbsps. yeast

Using large bowl, pour in flour and create a well in the center. Add yeast and dissolve with warm water. Mix together and form a ball. Use towel to cover. Let rise to double its size (30 minutes). Punch dough down and cut into two pieces and roll each piece into a loaf. Let rise a second time until it reaches top of pan. Uncover bread, slit tops, bake in oven on 300 degrees. Rub hot bread with water and wrap in a lightweight towel to make crust softer.

  1. Hard Tack

  • 1 cup water
  • 6 cups flour
  • 4 tsp salt (optional)
  • 2 tbsp. cold butter or shortening (optional)

Pour water into a large bowl and gradually add the flour. Stir continually. Stop adding flour when it becomes too thick to continue stirring. Knead and fold dough. Roll to a ½ thick sheet. Use a knife to slice the dough in squares approximately 3 inches by 3 inches. Lay on ungreased baking sheet. Use a toothpick or skewer to poke 4 holes in 4 rows for each square. Bake for 1 hour in oven at 375 degrees but flip the crackers over after 30 minutes.

Soups & Stews

  1. Cream Soup/White Sauce

  • 2 tbsps. Butter or lard
  • 3 tbsps. Flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • ½ tsp salt

Melt butter over low heat. Add salt and flour. Stir continually until frothy and smooth. Cook 3 minutes, prevent browning by stirring often. Add milk slowly. Boost heat slightly and stir until mixture thickens and is smooth and boiling.  Eat like soup or pour over toast, eggs, noodles, or whatever is on hand.

  1. Bean Soup

  • 1 quart of water
  • 1 cup beans
  • 1 tbsps. onion juice
  • 2 tsps. salt
  • 1-2 large onions sliced or chunked
  • ¼ tsp mustard
  • 2 tbsps. flour mixed with 2 tbsps. cold water

Soak beans in water overnight to soften. Pour ingredients into large pot and cook slowly with onion and pork. Add water as needed.

  1. Vegetable Soup

  • ½ cup cabbage
  • ½ cup carrots
  • 1 cup potatoes
  • 1/3 tsp pepper
  • 1 tbsp. minced onion
  • 4 tbsp. fat
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsps. chopped parsley
  • 4 peppercorns
  • 4 cloves
  • 1 cup of tomato juice/pulp
  • 1 quart of water

Heat onion, peppercorns, pepper, salt, and bay leaf in tomato juice for twenty minutes. Strain. Add additional ingredients to tomato mixture and cook 1 hour. Garnish with parsley before serving.

  1. Potato and Cheese Soup

  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne
  • 2 tsps. onion juice
  • 1 ½ tsps. salt
  • 2 cups diced potatoes
  • 2 cups of water that potatoes were cooked in
  • 2 tbsps. fine chopped parsley
  • 3 tbsps. flour
  • ¼ cup grated cheese
  • 2 tbsps. fat

Cook diced potatoes in 2 cups of water until tender. Push potatoes and 2 cups water through strainer. Add dry ingredients to melted fat, gradually add onion juice and milk. Sprinkle on grated cheese and garnish with parsley just before serving.

Dinners & Desserts

  1. Beef Stew

  • ¾ to 1-pound meat from shin, knuckles, neck, or cross ribs
  • ¾ cup carrots
  • 1 onion
  • 1 cup potatoes
  • ½ cup turnips
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1-quart water
  • ½ cup flour

Dice meat in small sections. Soak half of it in water for 60 minutes. Heat water and meat to boiling gradually. Salt and pepper remaining meat to season. Dip in flour and brown with onion in about 3 tablespoons of fat. Combine mixture with meat. Continue to cook, about 60 minutes, until tender. Add vegetables and ½ cup cold water. Cook until veggies are tender.

  1. Pepper and Eggs

  • 3 large peppers
  • 1 tbsp. vegetable oil or lard
  • 4 Eggs

Clean the peppers, remove the seeds, and slice them. Put vegetable oil or lard in pan and heat. Place sliced peppers in pan and sprinkle with salt. Crack eggs into bowl and whisk with fork. Once the peppers soften, pour egg mixture into pan and blend everything together.

  1. Bean Sausage

  • 1 cup soaked lentils, dried peas, lima beans, or beans
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup dried breadcrumbs
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp sage
  • ¼ cup fat

Cook beans until soft. Thoroughly mix ingredients together and then form like a sausage. Cover in flour and fry using fat.

  1. Poor man’s Meal

  • 3 Potatoes
  • 1 Onion
  • 4 Hot Dogs
  • 4 tbsps. Tomato sauce

Peel and cube the potatoes. Put potatoes into a skillet and slice onions into pan. Add about 1-3 tbsps. vegetable oil or lard. Let potato and onion cook and slice hot dogs. Add sauce to potatoes followed by hot dogs. Add ½ cup water, continue cooking until potatoes are soft.

  1. Dumplings

  • 2 cups flour
  • 4 tsp. baking powder
  • 2 tbsp. fat drippings
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup milk, meat stock or water

Sift salt together with flour and baking powder. Then cut with fat. Slowly add milk or water to create a soft dough. Roll out and put on the pre-greased pan. Drop directly into stew or soup, cover, and cook 30 minutes.

  1. Beans & Ham Hocks

  • 4 or 5 smoked ham hocks
  • 1 lb. dry pinto beans
  • 1 chopped yellow onion
  • Bay leaf
  • 2 ½ tsp. Black pepper
  • Salt to taste

Rinse beans and add to large pot with onion, pepper, bay leaf and ham hocks. Add water to cover everything and bring to a boil. Simmer covered for 2-3 hours. Stir frequently, add water if needed to cover. Continue cooking until beans are tender and sauce thickens. Serve warm with cornbread

  1. Hobo Tin Foil Dinners

It was not uncommon in the Depression Era for families to make a meal out of whatever types of vegetables were in season or available that day.

  • Potatoes
  • Squash
  • Peppers
  • Corn
  • Onion
  • Butter

Cut vegetables into large pieces, add butter and salt and pepper to taste. Wrap in tin foil, and cook in the oven or even in the coals of an open fire.

  1. Eggless chocolate cake

  • 3 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 ½ cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp white vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 5 tbsp. vegetable oil

Mix cocoa, baking soda, and flour in 8” square greased baking pan. Create a large depression in the dry ingredients and pour vegetable oil into it. Create two smaller wells, pour vanilla into one and vinegar in the other. Add water to the entire pan. Stir until blended and smooth. Bake 35 minutes in 350-degree oven.

  1. Baked Apples Without Sugar

  • 1 tbsp. honey
  • 1 tbsp. corn syrup
  • Chopped dates
  • Raisins
  • Marmalade
  • popcorn

Fill pan with ¼ inch of water to prevent burning. Core apples and fill with syrup and chopped date/marmalade mixture or popcorn/corn syrup mixture. Bake ½ hour until tender. Serve with additional syrup as a sauce.

Today we are lucky enough to have some modern conveniences available to us that make securing food and cooking meals much easier than they were in the Depression Era. Most preppers have come to the realization however that following an EMP or SHTF event that would create an extended grid down situation, we may very well have to revert to some of the methods used by our ancestors to feed their families.

If you have already started storing bulk dry goods, growing your own vegetables, and raising your own livestock when such an event occurs, you will be miles ahead of many people. Tuck these recipes away or even try some of them this week so that you can be confident in your ability to cook in a way that will sustain your family and boost morale during tough times.

What’s your favorite Depression Era recipe? Share with us in the comments below.

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How to Make a Rabbit Snare

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by Karen

When society collapses you will eventually have to find a way to get your own food by hunting and foraging for it.  If you think prepping is all about storing away food and water, you are absolutely not going to survive.  There is simply no guarantee you will have food at any point in time after the collapse.  You might have to flee your home, leaving your preps behind.  You might have looters come and steal your food.  Even if you manage to get through the collapse while bugging in and you get by without any major incidents, you will still eventually run out of whatever you had stored away.

Regardless of your situation, you need to build some hunting and foraging skills.  One way to hunt is to create a snare.  A snare is a way to catch rabbits, hares, and other small fur-bearing game without the use of a gun, knife, or other type of weapon.  All it takes to set a snare is some knowledge and skill and a little ingenuity.  Plus, it is a great way to catch game without having to stay put.  You can set your snares and then go about finding water, building a shelter, and doing other necessary tasks.

Making the Snare Loop

To build a rabbit snare, you have to make a snare loop.  You can easily purchase snare wire from any hunting supply shop and at many outdoor supply stores.  You can even get 22 or 24 gauge wire at a hardware store and use it.  Copper, brass, or steel wire is preferred, but if you do not have wire, you can also use string or thin rope.  Once you have your wire, you will need to do the following:

  1. Use wire cutters to cut a length of wire that is 2.5 feet (about the length of your arm).
  2. At one end of the wire, bend the wire around your finger to create a loop that is about an inch in diameter. Leave a tail of wire 1 to 2 inches long.
  3. Wrap the tail you left hanging from the loop around the long end of wire directly below the loop to secure the loop. You want to make this tight to make the loop solid so it doesn’t move much or come undone.  The loop will act like a slip knot.
  4. Take the other end of the wire and feed it through the loop you made.

Check out this video for a visual of how to make a snare loop.

You now have the snare loop, and because of the slip knot, the size of this loop will adjust to tighten around the rabbit or other animal you capture.  Now you need to know how to set a snare trap.

Types of Snare Traps

There are a few ways you can secure a snare loop to effectively create a trap.  Each has its advantages and disadvantages.  Some of the more basic traps rely on the animal tightening the snare wire around its own neck with its movement while is struggles to free itself.  Other traps rely of having a sort of spring mechanism that will be set off, pulling the animal from the ground and tightening the snare wire around it.  Let’s take a look at them in order of how easy it is to build it.

Static Loop Snare

This is a good option if you have access to a fence that has larger mesh holes.  If you notice that one of the holes in the wire mesh has frequently been used by rabbits or other small game, this is a great place to set your snare.  You can usually see signs of animal passage because fur will get caught in the wire where the animal passes through.  All you need to do is secure your snare loop on one side of the fence so the animal will pass through it when they pass through the hole in the fence.  This snare is stable and very easy to set up because you can usually attach it right to the fence.  Its main limitation is that there are a limited number of spots where you can set this up.

Free-Standing Snare

The free-standing snare is easy to set up.  The long end of the loop wire is secure in the ground either by a peg, a U nail, or a sturdy branch that can be driven into the ground.  The snare loop is secured to the object driven into the ground and left sticking out where the animal will run through it.  This trap requires the animal’s movements to tighten the snare wire, which might make it take longer for the animal to die and might cause greater damage to the fur and flesh.

Hanging Snare

This is similar to the free-standing snare except you will find a way to hang it so the snare loop is suspended over the path where the animal will run through it.  You can suspend this snare from a natural overhanging branch or you can rig some branches so that one is held up by two others and suspended across the space where you want to place the trap.  Again, the movements of the animal cause this snare to tighten.

Hooked Snare

The hooked snare is a bit more complicated, but very effective.  For this snare you will need a good location (we’ll talk about this next!) with a sapling or branch in a tree that will bend close to the ground.  Alternatively, you can use a strong stick or branch that is dead, but still has some spring left in it.  Push the thicker end of this large stick into the ground (place a large stone over the end that is in the ground if needed to keep the stick from coming out of the ground).  The stick can be used as is or bent over a log or large rock.

You will also need two smaller sticks that each have a protruding piece that will allow the two sticks to hook together.  Alternatively, you can carve notches into the sticks.  To do this you want to carve horizontally on the trigger stick, about 1 inch from the bottom end, and then diagonally (45 degrees) starting about 1 to 2 inches from the top and meeting the inside of the horizontal cut.  This leaves a wedge-shaped notch.  The notch on the stick driven into the ground will be opposite, with the horizontal portion of the notch near the top.  This way the two notches will easily hook together.

Follow these steps to build the trigger snare:

  1. Drive one of the notched sticks into the ground across the path from the sapling/branch.
  2. Tie a string or thin rope to the sapling/branch and then secure the other end of the rope to the trigger stick (the stick that is not in the ground).
  3. Secure the snare loop to the trigger stick.
  4. Hook the trigger stick to the stick that is driven into the ground. The rope connected to the sapling/branch should be short enough that the sapling or branch bends toward the ground, creating tension.  Ensure the snare loop is directed into the path.

This snare will capture the rabbit, which will dislodge the trigger causing the sapling or branch to lift the catch off the ground, tightening the snare loop and effectively strangling it.

There are a number of variations to this type of snare, but essentially, you need a way to secure the end of the trigger stick.  Alternatives to hooking it onto another notched stick include tucking the end under a large stone or bending it so it is lodged behind another stick (no notches involved).  You can also carve a box notch into the stick lodged in the ground, using a trigger that is simply a small stick that fits into the box notch as a plug.

Where to Put Your Snare

We have talked a lot about how to build the snare loop and about the different snares you can set, but no matter how good your snare is it won’t catch anything if it isn’t positioned properly.  You have to put your snare in the right location and in the right position.  The snare needs to be put in a location through which rabbits and other small fur-bearing animals tend to pass, but far enough away from domestic residences that you don’t risk trapping pets.  The best place to put the snare is along an obvious and well-used trail through the forest.

When it comes to positioning the snare, the key is to position it so that the snare loop is suspended directly in the middle of the path about 3 to 4 inches above the ground.  You can position some small twigs through either side of the loop to ensure that it stays in place.  You also have to make sure the animal actually runs right through the snare, rather than to one side or the other.  If you have found a very narrow part in the trail, this might not be an issue, but if there is space around the snare, the rabbit might pass around it.  Fortunately, the forest location provides you with the opportunity to funnel the animal in the direction in which you want it to go.  Simply gather foliage and sticks around the snare, forcing the rabbit to go directly through it.

The best setup is to make numerous snares and set them along the trail at intervals.  This way, if the rabbit misses one snare, there is another one to catch it.  It also gives you the opportunity to catch more than one animal at a time, providing you with more food.  You can check out this video that shows you how to choose the right location and how to set up a simple hanging snare.

Remember to check your snares every day.  If you do catch something, you want to get to it before something else does and while it is still a fresh kill.  You will also hopefully get to it and ease its suffering if the snare didn’t kill it quickly.  Checking your snares daily will also give you the chance to reset or adjust the traps if anything has disrupted them.

The Law

A final word on snaring animals.  If you are practicing setting snares pre-collapse, then you need to be aware of the laws regarding animal trapping and snaring in your state, province, or country.  You aren’t necessarily going to be allowed to go out and snare animals at any time of the year and you will need a license.  The best thing to do is contact your local authorities to find out the details regarding licensing and restrictions.

Snaring animals is an effective way to capture rabbits and other small game to supplement your food supply.  You can easily practice making a snare loop and even positioning a snare right in your back yard, but the best practice is going out and actually snaring an animal.  As with any skill, this is one you should train before you need to rely on it for your survival.

How to Build a Secret Underground Greenhouse

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by Karen

One of the most important aspects of survival after the collapse of society is how to ensure you and your family have enough food. You may have a few months of food stored away, but eventually that will run out and you will need to hunt, forage, and grow your own food. The great thing is you don’t have to wait for the collapse to get started.

Growing your own food will allow you to develop the skills you will need post-collapse and it will give you the chance to save money on your grocery bill. With the cost of food on the rise, this is important. There are so many advantages of an underground greenhouse, that you might be surprised. You might also be surprised at how easy it is to build and maintain one.

Advantages of an Underground Greenhouse

An underground greenhouse offers plenty of advantages over a traditional greenhouse. The first and perhaps most important of these is the fact that you can keep it hidden, particularly if it is built into a natural hillside or slope. When it comes to survival post-collapse, keeping your source of food hidden from the roaming eyes of others is an advantage. Other advantages include:

Visual appeal: Some people feel that having an underground greenhouse looks better than having a traditional above-ground structure.  The idea of not having a large, bulky structure on their property makes it nicer in terms of visual appeal.

Insulation: When the greenhouse is set beneath the surface, the thermal mass of the earth acts as an insulator. A greenhouse set between 6 and 8 feet below the surface will keep a consistent temperature through the winter and the summer. In the winter, the temperature can easily be kept between 50 and 60 degrees Fahrenheit (10-15 degrees Celsius), which is warmer than above-ground greenhouses. In the summer, the cool earth keeps the temperature from getting too hot. This makes the greenhouse ideal for any climate and any season.

Versatility: Besides the fact that an underground greenhouse can grow food, it is also useful if you have livestock. There are a few types of livestock that can benefit from being in an underground greenhouse, particularly in the winter. This includes chickens, sheep, and goats. If you have livestock and enough space for a larger greenhouse, then it makes sense to build a greenhouse big enough for the animals.

Protected environment: An underground greenhouse is far less susceptible to pests and chemicals. Chemicals that are sprayed nearby won’t end up on your plants and pests, including insects and mammals (deer, rabbits, etc.), won’t have easy access. That said, you need to be sure pollinators have access to your crops. If they don’t and you are growing food that is not self-pollinating, then you will need to hand-pollinate.

Low maintenance: Since the greenhouse is buried, most of the structure consists of the earthen walls surrounding it and the ground as the floor. For this reason, there is very little structure that actually needs to be maintained. The garden beds have less exposure to the elements and will last longer. The only part that will require regular maintenance is the roof. the frame and plastic or panels can be replaced/repaired as necessary.

Design

There are a number of different designs when it comes to building an underground or pit greenhouse. The early sun pit was a design from 1881 that used the effect of the sun heating the ground or dark stones to heat the greenhouse. The walipini is a popular underground greenhouse design originating in South America that takes advantage of the winter sun. here is a design analysis of a walipini greenhouse. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i79bE7a-f8g)

Regardless of the deign you use, it is recommended that your underground greenhouse is 8×12 feet in size. Of course, you will have to base the size of your greenhouse on the amount of space you have available and the amount of space you need for planting and walking inside the greenhouse. Here are some general tips when building an underground greenhouse.

It is important to put your underground greenhouse in the right location. When scouting a location:

  • To keep your greenhouse out of sight and secret try to place it in a location that is not highly visible from major routes of travel, such as a roadway or trail.
  • Make sure there isn’t too much tree cover or shade from buildings because your greenhouse needs light.
  • You want the greenhouse to run east-west with the roof facing south to capture the sunlight (facing north if you are in the southern hemisphere).
  • Plan your greenhouse so that you have a way in and out of the pit, whether that is a ramp or stairs.

Once you have determined where you will put the greenhouse, you need to dig a great big hole. When excavating:

  • Dig down to a level 2 feet below the planned depth of the greenhouse.
  • Ensure the walls have a slope of at least 6 inches between the roof and the floor.
  • Clay, bricks, or any other material that will trap heat can be used to build and stabilize the walls and keep them from caving in.
  • Save the deeper excavated soil to build up the north wall of the greenhouse, creating a berm, and the top-most excavated soil for the floor of your greenhouse.

Once you have your hole and your berm, you will want to plan for drainage. When planning drainage:

  • Fill the extra 2 feet you dug down with gravel, courser at the bottom and finer at the top.
  • Lay 8 inches of soil on top of the gravel.
  • Ensure the perimeter has 2 to 3 feet of gravel, which will improve drainage.
  • Ensure the bottom of the greenhouse has a slight slope from the middle to the edges to ensure good drainage.
  • Open gravel wells in the corners are an optional feature that will provide a method of water collection.

If you are planning to install an irrigation system, do it at this point, digging the trenches and installing the hoses/piping. Here is one way to install an irrigation system:

  • Dig trenches throughout your garden, making them a few inches in depth.
  • Ensure all trenches feed into a single trench located at one end of the garden.
  • Lay PVC piping and/or soaker hoses in the trenches.
  • Ensure all hose ends are capped and all PVC connectors are sealed and their holes stopped up with rubber cement.
  • Avoid connecting more than total of 100 feet of pipes/hoses to maintain adequate water pressure.
  • Drill 1/16-inch holes into pipes and any hoses that don’t have holes and space the holes in groups about 5 feet apart.
  • Install a backflow, timer, and pressure regulator to the faucet, making sure to connect the hose to the pressure regulator.

Once you have the irrigation and drainage taken care of, you can install the door(s). When planning the door(s):

  • Build your ramp or stairs at the appropriate location.
  • Build the door frame at the base of the ramp.
  • If there are any gaps around the frame, fill them with clay or soil to prevent heat from escaping.
  • Secure the door frame to the wall of soil by drilling holes into the sides of the frame at the top, middle, and bottom and using dowel, rebar, or stakes to attach the frame to the wall.

Finally, with the door(s) in place, you can install the roof. When roofing:

  • The berm should be situated so the angle between the top of the roof and the berm inside the greenhouse is anywhere between 53 degrees and 73 degrees.
  • Add 23 degrees to your latitude to determine the angle of inclination for your roof (the ideal is that the roof is perpendicular to the rays of sunlight on winter solstice).
  • The frame can be constructed from wood, 4-inch PVC pipes, or the type of metal hoops used in hoop houses.
  • The roof frame can be covered in greenhouse plastic or polyethylene or glass panels, ensuring that the covering extends past the edge of the frame by at least 1 foot on all sides.
  • Plastic sheeting can also be placed on the underside of the roof frame.
  • A rain gutter can be installed, placed along the bottom edge of the greenhouse, that will catch the runoff from the roof and direct it away from the structure.

Every greenhouse needs the right amount of ventilation, so it is critical that you include ventilation in your plans. The four ways to add passive ventilation (without the use of electricity or fans) to your greenhouse is as follows:

  • Install two doors, one at each end of the greenhouse.
  • Build a chimney into the midpoint of the wall at the back of the greenhouse.
  • Build a door-sized vent at the midpoint of the top of the wall at the back of the greenhouse.
  • Build drain pipe venting arms that are run from outside, through the earth, and into the greenhouse, allowing the temperature of the earth to regulate the temperature of the air entering and leaving the greenhouse.

Plants

When it comes to what you can grow in an underground greenhouse, anything that you can grow above ground in the growing season or anything you can grow in a traditional greenhouse is fair game.  This includes, but is not limited to the following.

  • Tomatoes
  • Eggplant
  • Herbs
  • Peppers
  • Potatoes
  • Beans
  • Radishes
  • Carrots
  • Onions
  • Broccoli
  • Fruit-bearing bushes and trees (even citrus)
  • Winter and summer squashes
  • Melons

Through the cooler winter temperatures, you can grow cool-weather crops, such as:

  • Kale
  • Cabbage
  • Spinach
  • Peas

If you have the space, the ability, and the drive to build an underground greenhouse, you won’t regret it. This is a super way to be able to grow food all year round and keep that food off the radar because it is simply less conspicuous.  For more information on the process check out this video series:

Happy building!

NEW Giveaway!!! Cheers for GearBest Big Sale this Summer– Best Ever Promo

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this giveaway is sponsored by www.GearBest.com

GearBest is providing EPIC GearBest Summer Discounts — Best Ever Promo (from June 13-17)
There are Ultimate Flash Deals | Free Gifts | Intel Inside | Hot Sales | Scorching Brands | Local Warehouses Parts Included.

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To celebrate this Big Promo, they also support a Giveaway here!!! There are 5 items listed:

 

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2. Opus BT-C3100 V2.2 Li-ion Digital NiCd NiMH Battery ChargerFlash Sale Price: $31.79

 

3. KAUKKO 18L Fashionable Backpack with Laptop LayerFlash Sale Price: $33.99

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5. Original Xiaomi Yi 1080P Car WiFi DVR CN VersionFlash Sale Price: $54.99

 

How to Enter:

  1. Post which item(s) in the BEST EVER Promo you want to get
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One winner will be picked via random number generator on June 17. The prize will be the item he wants to win (under $60) 🙂

PS: There is also a Summer Lucky Draw in this big sale (http://www.gearbest.com/m-promotion-active-229.html). You can try up to 9 Lucky Draw attempts each day. Welcome you check and enter 🙂

GOOD LUCK!!!

What is Democide?

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by Megan

Many of us may not be as informed as our grandparents when it comes to politics and war, but we are still not a stupid people. Freedom is still important to a great many people and there are still many people, especially preppers, who are not willing to just follow along with whatever plans the government cooks up next.

In earlier times it was easier to control a million people than physically to kill a million people. Today it is infinitely easier to kill a million people than to control a million people. —  Zbigniew Brzezinski

Democide occurs when any unarmed individual or group of individuals is murdered by a government. There are several different types of democide, including genocide, mass murder, and politicide. Whatever side of the fence you might be on when it comes to government, the quote above points out the one thing that everyday citizens on both sides need to understand.

The key factor to democide is similar to the key factor when determining homicide. Was there premeditation? Did the actions of the government demonstrate a lack of regard for human life? Make no mistake, governments may appear to be made up of bumbling incompetents who are lazy and driven by greed but the elite, powerful families, the “wizards behind the curtain”, has become very effective at democide.

The largest democide occurred as a fallout of communism. Although the thought of your government murdering people might be scary and unheard of, it’s really nothing new. Keep in mind that soldiers being killed during battle is not counted as democide.

Here are some events you may have read about or remember, that today are considered democide:

  • 1917-1987 USSR, nearly 62 million people killed.
  • 1933-1945 The Jewish Holocaust, over 20 million people killed. Most people are familiar with the holocaust having read about or seen portrayals of how this tragic event played out.
  • 1936-1945 Japan’s Imperialism over 5 million people killed.
  • 1949-1987 PRC (Communist China) over 76 million people killed.
  • 1975-1979 Cambodia, At the direction of Pol Pot, over 2 million people killed by communist Khmer Rouge, aka “The Butcher”.
  • Western Colonialism combined killed 50 million individuals.

Forms of Democide:

Politicide is the harm or murder of individuals or groups of individuals by government based on the fact or perception that they belong to a specific political group, are a threat to a government entity, or for other political purposes.

Genocide is the maiming, torture, or killing of individuals by government simply because they practice a certain religion, are of a specific race or ethnic group, or specific language. The term genocide was not used until the 20th century but the earliest documented example of genocide was centuries earlier. The good news is the rate of genocide has been going down since the end of World War II.

Mass Murder is a term used to refer to events where a government indiscriminately kills any individual or groups of individuals.

Soft-Kill Democide Theories:

Many people believe that there is a depopulation effort being quietly carried out by globalists. These efforts involve forced population control that while it does not involve directly murdering living individuals, it does prevent the birth of or terminate new lives.

Mass sterilization and procreation control through required birth control implants and forced abortions.

Vaccines have long been debated due to a recording which was made where a Merck scientist openly states that vaccines provided to Americans had been contaminated with cancer viruses and leukemia, which will result in the death of 1 in 3 Americans.

Chemtrails which are streaks of what looks similar to jet spray in the sky, have long been believed to be government attempts at poisoning the population under the guise of stemming global warming. Chemtrails containing aluminum oxide, barium salts, strontium, and some say possibly even the cancer virus known as SV-40.

Listen to this first-hand account from Kristen Meghan, who was in the Airforce as an industrial hygienist and an environmental specialist who tracked the health hazards that pilots may have been exposed to during their service:

or this one from Ted L. Gunderson, former FBI Chief in Charge followed after his death by his doctor and a colleague, both of whom speak to the fact that they believe he died of bladder cancer that was a direct result of arsenic poisoning.

Toxic Fluoride (a component of bug poison that harms body, mind, and teeth). Though some experts will discount toxic fluoride based on the low levels, what they don’t say is that even minor amounts of fluoride can be damaging you are exposed to those levels from multiple sources on a regular basis. It all adds up and that build up over time can have damaging effects on the human body.

There is growing evidence that a democide event may be planned for the United States that appears to be similar to Pinochet’s terrorist regime. Pinochet came into power in Chile as a result of a coup that is believed to have been sponsored by the CIA. During his reign, 40,000 people were detained as political prisoners and many more simply went missing.

A little time spent on the Internet will reveal video documentation of FEMA camps which appear to be completely set up and ready to receive citizens in need. The only problem with this scenario is that these “camps” are complete with armed guards, high fencing, and barbed wire, which seems to be more preparation to keep people contained inside against their will.

Democide events are still happening today. In 2015, over 4,000 Christian people were killed in church attacks throughout Nigeria. Christians in Nigeria are suffering persecution from the Muslim religious and political elite dominating Northern Nigerian government, Muslim Fulani herdsman, and Boko Haram.

Isis overtook the Iraqi Northern region in August 2014. During this process thousands of people, among them approximately 1,800 girls, were taken as sex slaves. The Yazidi women have had their children taken from them, women have been raped, they have been bought and sold.

Several days ago, 19 of the girls, who refused to submit to sex with their ISIS captors, were burned alive in front of hundreds of witnesses.

So what steps can you take to prepare for further incidents of democide?

  • Refuse to participate in any violence other than legitimate self-defense. Do not condone or otherwise support hate, violence, or fighting.
  • Research the bloodline of all our leading politicians. Then share your findings regarding the true lineage and goals of these New World Order politicians.
  • Be certain that you monitor and truly understand what your children are being taught in their schools. Many public schools are teaching children to blindly obey authority. While rules and laws have their benefits and blatant law breaking for the sake of it should not be encouraged, blind obedience is not healthy either.
  • Teach your children to have an informed and balanced respect for authority, not a blind one.
  • Provide them with education and experiences that are diverse.
  • Ensure that your own behavior models adult responsibility for them.
  • Share your beliefs and values with those closest to you and start planning for ways to disconnect as much as possible from any dependence on government for your livelihood and well-being.
  • Pay attention to attacks and persecution that is happening around the world and do not let these democide events go unnoticed or unchallenged.

It is estimated that throughout the 20th Century, all over the world, approximately 100 million people have been the victims of democide. People killed by their own government. We’ve only touched the surface with this article. This is both a tragic and shameful practice that simply must be stopped. The only way to do that is to educate people about what is happening and what to do about it.

Had you heard the term Democide prior to reading this article?

Surviving a Dog Attack

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by Nicholas

A fun, relaxing day in the park can quickly turn into a nightmare if you’re ever threatened or attacked by an unfriendly dog.  If an attack were to happen, would you know how to react and how to treat yourself after you have been wounded?  And even more importantly, do you know how to avoid or defuse such a situation?

These are just a few of the questions that we are going to answer in this article.  Dog attacks are really a bigger threat than you realize.  Yes, the overwhelming majority of dogs (including the intimidating looking ones) are not scary or aggressive.  In fact, if a dog does attack you, chances are good it’s because they are trying to defend their owner or what they believe is their territory.

Nonetheless, millions of people in the United States alone are the victims of dog attacks, and a significant percentage of those people are injured severely enough to require medical attention.  Knowing how to handle a dog attack is not just something that you should do for your own safety, but for the safety of your family as well.

AVOIDING A DOG ATTACK

Obviously the best way to survive a dog attack is to avoid a dog attack in the first place.  It could also be that the dog you believe is threatening you is actually not threatening you at all. Sometimes it can be difficult to tell if a dog is being aggressive or if they are just playing around.  Yes, some breeds are well known for being more likely to attack than others, but that doesn’t mean that all dogs of that breed are that way.

There are some things that you should look for in a dog that denote aggression.  For example, a dog whose ears are angled back, with teeth bared and growling, is showing classic dog aggression.  In contrast to this, a dog that is barking, with elevated ears could just want to play.

Also pay attention to the dog’s body.  Is the dog relaxed with a curve in their spine, or are they stiff and uptight with their entire body aligned together?  The latter option is a good indicator that the dog is not in a friendly mood.

Some people also believe that a dog, particularly a large dog, running towards them signals aggression.  This is not true at all.  It is true, yes, that a dog charging at you after having displayed the above behaviors could be aggressive, but then again a dog could just be running at you because they want to sniff you and play.  A dog that is simply running towards you is never a good indicator on its own of whether or not they are being aggressive.

Let’s say that you have encountered a dog that is demonstrating the aggressive behaviors we just described to you.  Does this mean that the dog is absolutely going to attack you and you will need to defend yourself?  Not necessarily.  You can still try to defuse the situation in more than one way.

The best thing you can do to defuse the situation is to avoid teasing or irritating the dog.  Many dog breeds are incredibly protective over their property and people, and acting in a teasing manner only makes them more likely to regard you as a threat and attack.

Do not turn and run.  If you do, the dog will almost certainly chase after you because of their instinct to chase animals.  Furthermore, it’s virtually impossible for you to outrun a dog.  They will catch up to you in seconds and then you’re really in trouble.

Rather than run away, simply stay where you are and stand still.  Even if the dog approaches you, you still shouldn’t move.  Allow the dog to approach and sniff you.

DO NOT:

  • make any movements with your limbs; if you do, the dog will take it as a sign of aggression on your part and attack.
  • make eye contact with the dog, or they will take it as a challenge.
  • shout or make loud noises, or they will view it as you trying to assert your dominance over them.

Another trick that you can use is to distract them with an object.  If you have treats or food on you, great, but anything that a dog would like to chew on will work.  The obvious risk to this method is that it involves moving your arms, which a dog could see as a threatening action on your part.  Move very slowly and clearly display the object you have so the dog can see it.  Then, throw the object away from you and hope that the dog goes after it.

Hopefully, these methods will work allowing you to turn and walk away, and you can go about your normal business.  Avoiding or defusing an aggressive dog is always a safer option that fighting the dog head on.  Nonetheless, dogs can still be unpredictable creatures at times, and you can never take for granted that any of these methods will for sure work.  With that in mind, let’s learn how you should defend yourself if you are indeed attacked.

HOW TO DEFEND YOURSELF FROM AN ATTACKING DOG

Once the dog begins to attack you, you need to defend yourself immediately.  Defend the vulnerable areas on your body and strike back at the dog at its vulnerable areas and weak points.  The best areas to strike on the dog are the throat and the back of their neck and head. If you hit the dog hard enough, it can stun them long enough for you to pull yourself away from the fight and to get to safety.

Use any weapons that you have on you or that you can find.  Weapons will especially come in handy if you are having to defend yourself from more than one dog.  If you have a gun, knife, or pepper spray on you, great, but don’t hesitate to grab a stick or a rock too if you have to.

Again, strike the dog at the vulnerable parts of their body like the throat and back of the head if you have a blunt weapon.  If you have a sharp bladed weapon such as a knife, the best places to slice or stab the dog are in the throat, eyes, and jaw muscles.  If you hit, slice, or stab them in the body, it can only make the dog angrier and cause them to intensify their attack.

While you are defending yourself from the dog, you should shout for help.  At this point a raised voice is going to have no effect on the dog one way or the other and you should use it to gain the attention of anyone nearby.

Even if you’re a dog person, you cannot show any mercy when defending yourself.  Treat defending yourself from a dog just as if you were defending yourself from another person.  Dog attacks can be fatal and several people do die from dog attacks each year.  Don’t hurt the dog if it is not necessary, but if the attack is serious and your life is in danger, you need to use as much force as required to end the fight and stop the attack.

While you are fighting the dog, it’s also important that you keep yourself protected as much as possible.  If you have a jacket, wrap it around your defensive arm.  It will help minimize the effect of the dog’s bite and could distract them long enough for you to either get away or deliver a fight ending blow.

The specific parts of your body that you will want to protect are your throat, face, chest, and stomach.  These regions become only more vulnerable if the dog manages to knock you off your feet.  You can’t let the dog to inflict enough damage to these places of the body because if they do, you will be severely injured and stand less of a chance of adequately defending yourself.

If the fight has turned to the dog’s favor and your defensive blows appear to be useless, the best thing that you can do then is to roll your front and curl your limbs and head inwards.  The dog’s attack likely won’t end, but it could provide you with enough time until help arrives and protect the vital areas of your body in the process.

AFTER THE ATTACK

After the attack has happened, you must immediately attend to any wounds that you sustain.  Even the smallest of open wounds are enough to invite an infection, which can be a real killer even in a non-disaster or non-wilderness survival situation.

Once you have identified a wound, immediately apply pressure with a cloth or a piece of your clothing to stop or at least slow down the bleeding.  Use clean water to wash out the wound and then dress it with a sterile bandage, gauze pad, or a large wrapping.

It’s a good idea to seek professional medical help for any dog attack wounds even if you believe that you’ve successfully treated the wound yourself.  The primary reason for seeking medical help is to fully prevent an infection from setting in.  Yes, it is possible to prevent an infection on your own, but if you don’t want to take any chances, you must see a medical professional.

Keep in mind that many doctors have likely had to deal with patients who were the victims of dog attacks before, so they will know exactly how to treat you.  You should absolutely seek professional medical help if you are unable to stop the bleeding or if a bone has been fractured as a result of the attack.

Something that may be on your mind after the dog has attacked you is whether or not it has rabies.  The best way to find this out is to contact the authorities and alert them to what has happened.  If the dog has also survived the attack and run away, it’s a major threat to any other innocent people walking about and the authorities need to catch it.

Once the dog has been caught, the authorities will test it for diseases.  They will then let you know if the dog had rabies or any diseases, and if so, you will be sent to a hospital to be treated.

CONCLUSION

After the dog attack is over and you have been medically treated, the only thing left for you to do is to handle the legal aspects of the attack if a dog owner was involved.  You don’t have to take legal action if you don’t want to, but if you feel that the owner’s negligence caused the attack, you can do so.  Be careful to read up on the dog attack laws relevant to your state if you choose to do so.

In summary, dog attacks are a much bigger issue than many people realize and you don’t want to find yourself as the unfortunate victim of one.  Very few dogs are aggressive but those that are can inflict serious damage and even kill you in the worst of circumstances.

Always try to avoid or defuse an aggressive dog so that you can avoid an attack all together, but if the dog does attack, use the defensive tips that we learned about in this article by striking the vulnerable and weak points of the dog while protecting yourself.  Immediately alert the authorities after the attack so they can prevent the dog from attacking anyone else and give you proper medical attention.

How to Become a Gray Woman

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It’s no secret that in a post-SHTF situation, most women will be at a distinct disadvantage. Men are perceived as stronger, more prone to violence, and naturally more intimidating than women. The only thing women can do to combat this is to use this perception to their advantage when becoming a gray woman.

We notice and remember people because they draw our attention. It could be they seem threatening, overly large, or intimidating. It could be they are dressed differently, walking faster or slower than others in the crowd or acting calmly when everyone else is in panic mode.

Whatever the difference, even if not consciously identified, their image stays in our mind and is easily recalled later. Women don’t naturally stand out for these reasons, and that’s what becoming a gray woman is about, going unnoticed, staying off the radar of others, being “hidden” even when you have to be out in the open.

Invisible but Not Weak

As a woman in most crowds and especially post-SHTF, appearing overly alert and tuned in will actually make you stand out. You need to be alert and aware without looking like you are. If you appear to be too weak, you will stand out as an easy target. On the other hand, if you appear to be too strong or aggressive, too in control of yourself and your surroundings, you will draw attention and be seen as a threat which could draw an attack.

Scent

If you’ve ever ridden an elevator with a woman who was wearing a particularly strong perfume, you understand how scent can draw attention unintentionally. In a post-SHTF situation, women need to forgo the use of perfumes and strong smelling soaps and shampoos, even if you have them stockpiled, because it will cause you to be noticed and possibly remembered by those you encounter. Scent can also be a dead give-away if you do find yourself in a situation where the only option is to hide out of sight.

Appearance

One area women overlook when becoming a gray woman is their appearance. Men have been conditioned to notice and remember how women visually look and dress. Pay particular attention to this fact, forgo the make-up, and try to dress so as not to attract unwanted attention from men in the crowd. Don’t go overboard and look mannish because that can draw attention as well. Wear jeans and khakis, and stick to colors that are plain such as blue, gray, green, tan, brown, and other earth tones.

Feminine Hygiene Needs

Go for reusable rather than the synthetic ones that can be bought and stockpiled. In a post-SHTF scenario, getting rid of any kind of trash will be tough. There won’t be garbage pick-up and accumulating trash is not only a health hazard but it’s a dead give-away to looters that someone is in the area. Food scraps can be fed to animals or buried to hide them and paper can be burned.

So, when it comes to feminine hygiene you’re going to have to consider going all natural or at least reusable. If you are handy with a needle and thread you can find patterns for pads on the Internet. You can make your own reusable pads out of just about any type of material but cotton and flannel are ideal because of their absorbency.

The other reusable option that comes to mind is called a silicon menstrual cup, sometimes called a moon cup or diva cup. This device can be bought online in advance and stockpiled. Each cup can be washed and reused safely for up for up to one year, possibly longer if you had no other option. For most women it’s not more uncomfortable than a tampon so the only inconvenience is washing it after each use.

Cooking

Although cooking during a post-SHTF situation may not be solely the responsibility of women, this is an area where women can cultivate their expertise and take a lead role. Learn how to cook outdoors over an open fire, over a camp stove, or even just hot coals. Learn what herbs and other additives you can use to enhance taste but that won’t linger in the air during cooking or long after the meal is served.

Situational Awareness

The thing that catches most people off guard is the element of surprise that often comes with dangerous situations, especially an attack, assault, or riot. Following a natural disaster or in a post-SHTF situation, the most important thing a woman can have to help her survive is situational awareness. This means being aware of your surroundings on a daily basis so that you are instantly alert to anything that is out of the ordinary and anything that could indicate danger is about to rear its head.

Situational awareness is about training yourself to be alert. It’s honing your observation skills including not only what you see, but what you smell, and what you hear so that you can be acutely aware of what’s happening or about to happen even outside of your vision field.

When you enter a building, any building, pay attention so that in an emergency situation you can act instinctively. This means take note of where the exits are, the location of fire alarm pulls, vending machines, a first aid kit, or if there is a vent system big enough to crawl through if you needed to stay hidden.

If you’re a mom, you are probably already somewhat aware of how to tune into what you hear that is out of sight. Most moms are able to listen to their kids playing in another room and “know” by their tone of voice, the sounds they hear or don’t hear, whether something is amiss. Hone that skill to tune into to other sounds as well. Pay attention to what the birds sound like on a normal day outside your home and how that changes when they feel threatened. Birds and even barking dogs can give you early warning of trouble if you pay attention to them.

The next time you go shopping with your family, practice observing things that are outside of your normal range of vision. Can you observe people walking behind you by glancing in storefront windows? When you stop for lunch, sit with your back to the wall and watch people as they enter. Then close your eyes and try to recall what they were wearing, carrying, or other distinct features about them.

Practice memorizing things quickly. Glance at the table when you sit down for lunch then turn away and try to write down everything that is on the table without looking at it. You can do this with license plates, drivers of cars that you pass, phone numbers, and even billboard signs.

Know Your Way Around

Make it a point to know the area that you are going to be in, whether it’s where you live, work, or visit. Take time to learn your way around your bug out location as well. When things get chaotic, your knowledge of the streets, alleys, and businesses around you could be the difference between life and death for you and possibly for your family. Make sure you have and carry updated topographical maps as well as maps of any underground routes such as subways or utility tunnels.

At the moment that you are able to escape a dangerous confrontation, knowing your way around the area when your opponent does not could just be the thing that saves your life.

Watch for Signs

Signs of trouble can be all around us if we are paying attention. If someone enters the bank in the heat of summer wearing a jacket, it could be a sign the bank is about to be robbed. If you hear an argument beginning behind you in the check-out line at the grocery store, it could be a sign that things are about to get out of hand. A slight change in the weather could indicate a fierce storm or tornado is brewing. If you learn to pay attention to the little things that most people take for granted, you’ll be alerted early to possible danger. Having even just a few moments notice of trouble can give you the time you need to get out of harm’s way.

Get Enough Sleep

One thing that is crucial, especially for women, is to get enough sleep. This is difficult during “normal” times but it is so important to being able to stay alert and healthy. In reality, you could be living your typical life one day and running for your life with your family in tow the next day. You won’t be at your best, you won’t be on high alert and ready to protect your family from danger if you are running on two hours sleep. With that in mind, getting the right amount of sleep every night is one way that you keep yourself prepared for whatever may come tomorrow.

Avoid Distractions

One way to develop situational awareness and to stay alert to what may be happening around you is to just avoid distractions such as cell phones, music iPods, or other electronic devices. When you are moving through town, whether on foot or by car, make sure you are paying attention to others around you. Is traffic moving normally? Is there someone in the crowd around you that is acting suspiciously? You definitely won’t notice these things if you are distracted by your phone.

The more you practice the skills above, the better you will get at blending in to your surroundings and going unnoticed. You will also develop increased situational awareness and “instinctively” know what is happening around you. You will be able to move about without being noticed by others when you want to and your Spidey sense will be activated automatically when danger is brewing. You will avoid becoming a target and will have extra time to take action to get out of the area in advance of danger.

How to Tie a Handcuff Knot

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by Karen

Sometimes, when we are in a situation where our survival is at stake we have to deal with people we would rather not have to deal with.  We have food, water, and supplies to protect.  More importantly, we have people to protect and we want to be sure we have a way to restrain people that cause trouble for us when needed.

The handcuff knot is a very clever knot that is capable of doing as its name implies, restraining someone by either the hands or the feet.  It is relatively easy to make, once you get the hang of it, and it can be made with the use of rope or any other number of webbing, strings, or lines.  Best of all, the handcuff knot is a brilliant knot that can help you out in other ways, as well.

Uses for the Handcuff Knot

The handcuff knot is useful when you need to restrain an individual, as mentioned above, by either restraining the hands or the feet.  This might be a looter or burglar or someone who is a threat to your survival, but someone you don’t want to injure if possible.  You can even use fishing line, if that’s all you have, to secure a person’s thumbs behind their back.  They won’t fight it because they will end up with the line cutting into their skin.  Once you have the person secured, you can easily lead them along with you if you are on the move or you can tie them to something to secure them and make sure they can’t get away.

Aside from restraining people, the handcuff knot is extremely versatile and has a number of other uses.  Let’s take a look:

  • You can use the knot to hobble an animal by securing the handcuff knot around the animal’s legs. This also allows you to haul or carry an animal carcass that you have hunted out of the woods and it may well have been the first use for this type of knot, the reason why it was created.
  • You can use the handcuff knot to create a fireman’s chair by securing the cuffs around the ankles and then pulling the person up by the rope. You need to be careful here when using a rope with a small diameter because there is a chance of cutting off the person’s circulation, so webbing makes a better choice.
  • You can use the handcuff knot to pull an unconscious person along with you (again, be mindful of the potential to cut off the person’s circulation).
  • When using webbing, you can use the handcuff knot as a harness in a variety of settings
  • Tie oars together and lash them to the rails of a boat.
  • Tie doubles of other objects together to secure them.

How to Make the Handcuff Knot

To make a handcuff knot you will need to take your length of rope and do the following:

  1. Make one loop by crossing the left side over the right side, so the right side crosses behind.
  2. Make a second loop identical to the first loop so you have two opposing loops.
  3. Cross the two loops in the middle.
  4. Grab the right side of the bottom loop through the middle of the top loop.
  5. Grab the left side of the top loop through the middle of the bottom loop.
  6. Pull the top loop through the bottom loop and the bottom loop through the top loop.

You will then have a set of handcuff loops that will work to restrain a person.  The cuffs can be tightened by pulling the loose or working ends of the rope.  Once you have someone restrained, you will need to tie the loose ends of the rope in a knot to secure the handcuffs.  This can be a regular overhand knot or a figure eight knot.  These knots will create a stopper that will make it so the cuffs can still be tightened, but they cannot be loosened, thus securing the captive person.

Check out this video to see how it’s done:

Knot Rating for the Handcuff Knot

All knots have a knot rating that provides the following information about a knot:

  • Difficulty: How difficult it is to tie the knot; the easier the knot is to tie, the lower the number
  • Strength: The strength of the rope with the knot that is specified (all knots weaken a rope to some extent); the higher the number, the stronger the knot
  • Security: This tells how well a knot will stay tied and not come loose even when subjected to a standard load; the higher the number, the more secure the knot is
  • Stability: This tells how well the knot will hold up under above normal loads, for example when the knot is pulled in wrong direction; the higher the number, the more stable the knot is

The different ratings for a knot are all on a scale of 1-5.  The handcuff knot rates as follows:

  • Difficulty: 4
  • Strength: 4
  • Security: 4
  • Stability: 4

How to Escape a Handcuff Knot

If you are tied up using the handcuff knot, it might be possible to escape from it.  Since it is rope that is restraining you, it is possible to cut it or untie it if the circumstances are right.  Here are the ways you can escape from the handcuff knot:

  • While looking as though you are being cooperative when being tied up, if you can hold your hands with knuckles toward your captor and keep a little space between your wrists (or ankles) it might keep the handcuffs of the knot from going too tight. This will provide you with some wiggle room to get out of the restraints.
  • Since you are bound with rope, you can cut yourself free if you can rub the rope on something sharp. This can be a piece of glass, a sharp rock, a nail sticking out of a board, or anything with ridges or a sharp edge.
  • If you have been tied in the front and you have not been gagged, you might be able to use your teeth to loosen the stopper knot on the handcuff knot. Even your fingers might be able to work at the knot because it has to be as close to your wrists as possible to create an effective stopper.  If the knot is too far away, you will be able to loosen the ropes, but if it is close to the wrists you can reach it with your fingers.

It does take a little time to get the hang of tying the handcuff knot, but once you have it, it is incredibly useful in a number of scenarios.  It is yet another knot that you can add to the growing number of knots you are learning to tie and yet another skill to add to your prepper skills.  Happy knot tying!

Fun Games Your Family Can Play in the Wilderness

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by Karen

Prepping as a family has its challenges, but it can also be a lot of fun, especially when you make it into a game.  One of the most important parts of prepping a family is ensuring they have wilderness and outdoor survival skills.  No matter how old the members of your family are, there are wilderness survival skills they can learn.  What better way to do this than by playing wilderness games?

There are a variety of outdoor and wilderness games that can make learning these skills fun and engaging for kids of all ages.  From getting kids comfortable with being in nature, increasing their awareness of what is around them, and helping them learn how to accomplish a variety of tasks, the games that follow can accomplish these objectives.  But first, a word on how to present these games to your kids.

Talking to Your Kids

No one knows your kids better than you, which means you are the one who knows the best way to talk with your kids about survival.  Maybe your children are older and/or able to handle the truth of why you are prepping.  Maybe they are younger or more sensitive and cannot understand or would be stressed if they knew the whole story.  Either way, it is important to discuss different aspects of prepping with them.  You can tell them the why of it if you think they can handle it or you can just present it as something to learn just for the fun of it.

You should talk to your kids, if they are able to process the why, before you start playing these games, so they have some context when playing.  This will help them better absorb what they learn.  You can also talk to everyone after you have played the game to find out what they learned, what stood out for them, what they might have struggled with, and if they have any questions.

At the very least, giving everyone who is playing some background is helpful.  Potential world disaster scenarios aside, every child, no matter how sensitive, should understand that emergencies happen and that the family has an emergency plan.  Kids should also know what to do if they ever get lost or if they are concerned about a stranger that has approached them.  If you spend time camping and in the wilderness, then they should know basic survival skills.

Safety First

Even though these are games, parents must not let their enthusiasm get the better of them.  Take things slowly and teach kids one skill at a time.  If you overload them, they won’t absorb it as well as they should.  It is also important to ensure that the game suits the age of the players and that an adult is supervising the game at all times.

Be sure that kids understand their responsibilities, as well.  This means following the rules and staying within the boundaries set by the adults in charge.  Kids must also be taught to respect the environment and any equipment or tools they are using.

Games

That said, it’s time to learn some great wilderness games to play with your family.  The following games are listed with the appropriate age range when applicable.  Please remember that the age ranges given are just suggestions and you will need to judge the appropriateness of any of these games for your children based on their age, developmental abilities, and maturity level.  Choose the ones you think are most applicable to your family, your situation, and the skills you need to learn.

Track Those Tracks (any age)

Whether you are in the city or outside of it, there are bound to be animal tracks around.  Determine which are the most common tracks in your area or where you are camping or hiking and create a sheet that shows a variety of tracks and to what animal they belong.  Give one sheet to each player.  This is also a great game for adults to participate in to test their track-identification skills.

Choose your area and see who can identify the most tracks within a given period of time.  If you have lots of participants, then people can pair up, perhaps an older child or adult with a younger child.  This is a great way to learn the various animal tracks, which will help kids learn to track animals when hunting or know which dangerous animals might be in the area.

Adapted from http://blog.cheaperthandirt.com/survival-games-kids/.

Wild Edibles Scavenger Hunt (any age)

This is a great game in which anyone, young or old, can participate.  Create a sheet of a variety of wild edible plants in your city or the area in which you are camping or hiking.  Ensure the plant pictures and names are on the sheet and have everyone find as many of the plants as possible.

This is a fantastic way to help family members learn to identify wild edible plants they can eat in emergency situations.  However, for the sake of safety, be sure everyone understands that they should never eat a plant if they are uncertain if it is safe, as there are poisonous plants that look similar to edible plants.  Children who are unsure about a plant should always ask an adult before eating it.

Shelter Challenge

Before playing this game, teach the kids about the different types of shelters that can be built in the wild, such as lean-tos and teepees.  Kids should understand that outdoor survival depends on finding or making shelter that will help keep them warm and dry.  This game can have a couple of variations.  With the first, you can have everyone, either individually or in teams, locate the best natural shelters they can find.  This can be hollow trees or logs, natural overhangs made from tree branches, caves, or other applicable shelters.

The second variation is to divide people into teams and have a challenge in which you see who can build a lean-to or other type of shelter the fastest.  You can do this near your campsite or find a spot along a hiking trail.  Wherever you are, make use of material you find there.  You can also choose to provide each team with some basic items they might have in their survival or bugout bag, such as rope, duct tape, or a tarp.

Adapted from http://blog.cheaperthandirt.com/survival-games-kids/.

Fire Prep Challenge (ages 6 and up for gathering materials; ages 10 and up for building a fire)

Do your family members know how to start a fire?  Even older children can learn.  And young children can learn what materials are required to make a fire.  This challenge will see individuals or teams in a wilderness setting gather the materials they think they would need to successfully start a fire.  Before starting the challenge, talk about the different materials that can be used to get a fire started, such as materials that would make good tinder and kindling, and what wood is best for the fire.

This game has a few variations, including:

  • Have participants gather materials that would make good tinder or kindling or wood. You can use just one of these categories and see how many materials they can find that would qualify or you can have each person/team find the materials for one category.  The adult supervising the game can then test out the materials to see which ones work and which ones don’t.
  • Have participants gather all material they would need to successfully build a fire. Each person/team will have to determine what would work best.
  • For older kids and adults, you can take the previous challenge further and have them arrange the tinder, kindling, and wood properly and actually try it out to see who can get the best fire going based on the materials they collected and how well they built the foundation for the fire.
  • Have the person/team gather materials and build the fire as in the previous challenge and then try different ways to start the fire without a lighter or matches.

Adapted from http://blog.cheaperthandirt.com/survival-games-kids/.

Ultimate Hide and Seek (ages 6 and up)

This is a hide-and-seek game that will teach kids how to move with stealth.  This is a useful skill to learn in case the time ever comes when they have to stay hidden from potentially dangerous people.  The game is played as follows:

  • The seeker will set boundaries for the playing area and designate six locations that are bases.
  • The seeker will remain at the sixth and final base and the players will all hide.
  • For each turn at moving toward one of the bases, the seeker will call out how they will count and what number they will count to. They might choose to count to 10 quickly or five slowly.
  • When the seeker counts, the players move toward their next base. If any player is visible to the seeker when the counting for that turn is finished, that player is out.
  • The first player to make it to the final base without being seen wins.

Adapted from http://beprepared.com/blog/8996/survival-skills-for-kids-outdoor-survival-games/.

How to Get Back to Camp (ages 8 and up)

The final game is one that will help kids develop their navigational skills.  If you are camping, have a cottage, or are just hiking for the day and have a base area set up, you can play this game.  Stay together as a group, or if you have more than one adult who can navigate, split up.  Then play as follows:

  • Each group will have a map of the area and a compass.
  • Take the group to a random location (different locations equidistant from the base if you have more than one group).
  • Have the group find their way back to camp or whatever base or location you have chosen. If you have more than one group, then the first group that makes it back to base wins.

You can start with an easy location that is close to the base and work up to longer distances and more complicated terrain.  This will ensure kids learn how to find their way anywhere, whether or not they are familiar with the area.

Bugging Out

You can call this game whatever you think is the most appropriate for your kids.  It could be called Going on a Road Trip or anything else you can think of, but essentially, it is a bugout drill.  Create an imaginary scenario (appropriate to the age and sensitivity level of your younger family members) and give everyone 15 minutes to pack the essentials and be ready to go.  This will give your family practice at getting ready to bug out and you will see where you need to work on your preps.  After you are ready to go, you can follow through with a nice drive or day trip with your supplies, choosing to see how you would get by with them for the day or choosing to do something fun and unrelated to prepping.

Adapted from http://momwithaprep.com/10-great-pretend-games-to-help-your-children-develop-preparedness-skills/

Geocaching

Geocaching is a great activity that teaches navigation.  Geocaching is essentially a scavenger hunt where people hide items and other people find them using GPS navigation.  But you can do this with your family with an added twist.  You can do away with the GPS and use a map, compass, and written communication or symbols to find the hidden items.  After all, when disaster strikes, there won’t necessarily be cell service and GPS to rely on.  Kids and adults alike have to learn to rely of old fashioned methods of navigation.

You can hide items in various areas around your home or neighborhood or around the area where you are camping and get your family members to team up and find them.  Provide them with a description of where the items are and a map and compass and let them find the items.  In a real life survival situation, you might have to rely on leaving caches for other family members to find, so this is a great way to practice.

The above games are fun to play and kids and adults of all ages will love them.  They will teach the kids and adults in your family skills that will serve them well in any emergency situation, no matter where they are or where they need to go.  You can adapt any of them to be done in an urban setting and they can also be great games to play when disaster strikes or the collapse of society happens.  When there is no longer internet to keep kids occupied, these games will ensure they are entertained and educated in important post-collapse life skills.

Win a GIFT for Father’s Day & Make Summer Perfect with GearBest

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Hey everyone,

Today I’m announcing the latest giveaway from GearBest.com. First, you need to check out the 10 items below:

1. DQG Fairy 10180 Cree XP G2 R5 4C 4500K Mini Brass Water Resistant LED Flashlight

2. 348 Nichia NVSW219BT – V1 240Lm Mini 10440 / AAA LED Torch

3. Manker U11 CREE XPL V5 1050LM Rechargeable LED Flashlight

4. Opus BT – C3100 V2.2 Li – ion Digital NiCd NiMH Battery Charger

5. Nitecore D4 Li-ion Ni-MH NiCd LiFePO4 Smart LCD Battery Charger

nitecore d4

6. Sunwayman T25C Cree U3 880Lm Zooming LED Flashlight

7. Ganzo G729-BK Axis Lock Folding Knife Pocket Clip

8. KAUKKO FH03 Vintage Style 5L Male Sling Bag

9. Xiaomi Yeelight RGBW E27 Smart LED Bulb

xiaomi yeelight

10. Boruit LT – 069 5000Lm CREE T6 Bicycle LED Headlamp Pack

boruit lt

There are 10 items listed. You can choose which item you think would make the best gift for the coming Father’s Day or you can pick up other items in the Make Summer Perfect with GearBest.

How to enter: write a comment below with the item (number) you want.

One winner will be picked up on May 31. The prize will be the item win most votes (under $60).

Finding the Perfect Bug Out Location

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by Jeanie

First off there is no such thing as perfection, but there is the best available property for your needs.

Finding the best Bug Out Location (BOL) depends on your requirements and personality – yes personality. Some people thrive on their own just with their immediate family while others need the support system of like-minded people.

Why do you need a BOL?

There are various scenarios from the possibility of natural disasters to post-apocalyptic chaos that prompt people to find secret locations where they can exist off the grid (OTG). When there’s a natural disaster that covers quite a large area  – like a hurricane, the necessity arises of moving elsewhere where you have food, water and a place to stay until things are back to normal. If you are thinking of terrorist attacks or some other kind of meltdown in the system when cities are just not going to be able to cope, then you may be in your BOL for an extended period of time. Maybe your BOL is just your place to get comfortable with nature over weekend and holidays – so you are going to need to make it more “livable” rather than an emergency escape.

Best or cheapest land?

Let’s face it the cheapest land is the land no one else wants. If you can see potential that others can’t see then go for it but you have to consider a number of factors. Often farmland that has been abandoned goes cheap – the result of too many chemicals or bad farming practices. Nature however has a way of restoring itself, look at how wildlife has re-established itself in the Chernobyl area – but OK we are not thinking that extreme!

People who buy impoverished farmland and let it return to a wooded state – with some judicious help by planting indigenous trees and shrubs will soon have wildlife re-establishing itself within a few years.

The best land has the amenities you want – water, decent soil, seclusion, safety – but the price will be higher.

How often will you use your BOL?

If only to be used in the event of an emergency then a BOL with no accommodation but enough supplies to last a couple of months and tents stashed underground in rot proof containers may be all you need. If you are thinking of it as a weekend retreat then you can consider making it more permanent. Of course a permanent construction is easier to find – but what are you really hiding from – the riotous hordes will be in the cities searching for food and supplies – not in the mountains. And the chances are they won’t have the tracking skills to find your place if you have hidden it carefully. If it is not going to be visited often then perhaps the option of a trailer instead of a permanent place may be an idea – But when I say trailer I mean one like this, light and easy to tow behind a vehicle that can pop up with everything you need and even a tent on top!

What do you need to establish?

You BOL should be carefully chosen to provide you with water, food, and shelter and be reasonably accessible year round. Yes, it may be great to have a cabin in the mountains but how do you get there in winter? How do you stash enough fuel to keep warm? You will need water, shelter, food and medical supplies – more or less in that order unless you have chosen Alaska where shelter will be first priority, followed by fire to melt the ice so you can at least get something to drink!

To keep your family going in the woods if you are cut off from supplies, you will need to have a well, spring, or rainwater tanks on your property. Properties next to a lake or river are easy to find, unless it is near a very small stream. The best may be to rely on rainwater tanks –it is an expense to get them in there in the first place, but entirely doable if you can get a vehicle to the site – check access roads – they should not be too accessible but on the other hand not totally impassable.

In rural Missouri, Arkansas and SE Kansas there are lots of suitable places with wooded streams. If you look at NE Arizona, NE Nevada, NE North Dakota and NW Minnesota you can find cheap land but you will need to check the climate, the availability of water and possibility of growing food or hunting for food. Having a patch of desert without any water doesn’t help. I got excited a few minutes ago about a piece of land in the Sierra Blanco area of Texas I saw advertised online – $20 000 for 20 acres – until I saw the pictures – flat, arid, stony with a bunch of cactus. Unless you built underground any shelter would be seen from miles away.

New Mexico is a possibility as there is quite pleasant weather down that way and buying rural property there is reasonable.

Consider your neighbors

Yes, you are going off grid but humans are a co-operative species and we depend on each other for survival – in your tribe you want like-minded people. So if you are considering buying a large property together make sure you camp out with these people and put yourself into situations where you have to depend on each other  – you will soon work out who you want in your tribe. If purchasing on your own in a new location make sure you can get help from neighbors if necessary.

When you buy a property near a small village check out the townsfolk first – go to the local hang outs and have a drink – tongues get loose and you will soon hear about undesirables in the area – you don’t want to make the mistake of buying into an area where illegal activities are going on – criminals also favor out of the way places where no one is likely to come snooping around!

What do you want to spend?

Generally people are spending around $1000 per acre but there are some bargains around at around $500. Of course if you want everything already there – underground storage, rainwater harvesting, vegetable garden established and fruit trees plus a livable structure you will pay more.

The problem with a lot of rural properties is that although the price per square acre is relatively low the properties are huge so you could end up paying quite a lot. This is where it may be better for a few families with similar ideas to buy the land together and then each establish their own BOL on the property – independent of each other.

Bear in mind that you are going to pay more for flat land, as it is easier to build on and to farm. If you buy something cheaper that is virtually on the side of a cliff you will be able to control access better but it also may also make escape more difficult. Rocky land is cheaper and may provide hidey-holes if you need them or the opportunity to construct something between the rocks that blends in.

Do your homework thoroughly

Study the prices paid for properties sold recently in the area you are thinking of buying so you are not over-paying for land.

Check how far the property is from your current home. How far are you prepared to travel to reach it? In worst-case scenarios where the roads are blown up or blocked you may not be able to get there with a vehicle. Have mountain bikes ready as transport or off-road motorbikes (remember they need fuel so fuel should have been stashed at your BOL and the tank should always be kept full in case of emergency). Check your route from your current home to the BOL – if a bridge is unserviceable can you cross somewhere else safely – will you need a blow up raft to get across? Can you access the property in summer and winter? If it is too difficult to access it is not worth buying.

Find out about climate conditions over the past 50 years – old timers in the town will be able to give you the details of floods, hurricanes, mud-slides and so on or you can do an internet search on the natural disasters that have befallen the area you are planning to buy into. Constructing your home or positioning your camp will also need to take cognizance of the possibility of wildfire, flooding, prevailing winds as well as access to water.

A BOL will need trees for various reasons – they provide shade, firewood and cover from overhead – so try to build your shelter under the tree canopy to minimize detection form the air. A property that has fruit or nut trees already established on it is a bonus and one that has suitable materials for making fires adds to that bonus.

Check the various access points to the land – no one wants to be trapped without a “backdoor” – foxes normally have around 3 to 4 exits from their dens.

Test the soil and identify the grasses growing on the land. The soil needs to be reasonably loamy if you want to grow vegetables and the grass should provide suitable grazing for the animals you plan to keep. Of course if you are looking for something simply to escape to for a short period of time then you don’t have to consider the soil.

What wildlife is already living on your land?

If you are keen on hunting and there are lots of deer and rabbits on your property you probably will be able to get something to eat, but their relatives are going to eat whatever crops you plant, unless you can fence the vegetable garden properly. If you have lots of flowering plants you will be able to keep bees and enjoy the honey – but so do bears. Are there bears in the area?

If you are think of an area like Nevada, Texas or Arizona is the land you are looking at full of snakes and venomous insects? If so you will need to know how to deal with a bite correctly. Otherwise choose a location with more amenable reptiles.

How to go about finding properties for sale

The wider your network the more likely you are to find a suitable property. Register for sites where properties are put up for auction, check EBay (but be aware that putting in a winning bid doesn’t guarantee a sale), get estate agents in the areas you have pin-pointed doing their homework. Try land4less.us for cheap properties. As with anything do check out whether properties are legit and never buy anything unseen. You will also need to check whether you have the mining rights, laws pertaining to construction, restrictions with regard to hunting and so forth.

Put the word out among locals in the nearby village or town – they are bound to get news first and if you offer an incentive you could pick up a bargain before the real estate agents get in on the act.

Lastly don’t forget friends and family – for each person you know they know at least 100 others – it works exponentially. Let your dentist, doctor, barber, even the pizza delivery guy know you want a property in a certain area – you don’t have to tell them why – and you will be surprised at what may come up. The pizza delivery guy may have a granny in Arkansas whose friend’s daughter’s boyfriend has some land…

The ideas outlined above probably aren’t going to appeal to survivalists who want their location to be totally secret because hundreds of people are going to know the general area of where to find you. You have to make up your mind about how far off the system you are planning to go. But if you are buying or renting the property records will be kept and you can be tracked down.

Of course you can do something crazy like hide out in a state park but the park rangers are likely to take dim view of your presence, and taking off for a foreign country and hiding out in one of their national parks could have equally serious consequences. Having said that certain South American countries are welcoming of immigrants – Puerto Rico and Colombia for instance are relatively easy to get into if you really want to go that far.

Multiple locations

You never know where things are going to go wrong so it is advisable to have multiple locations for BOL’s, but that is expensive – so again a cooperative approach may be best. Buy into a number of larger tracts of land with other preppers – so you have at least 2 to 3 options. This enables you to keep an eye on each others land and buildings during routine visits, to develop and share resources, pool labor for bigger projects and to work together in defending yourselves.

If you want to meet up with other similar minded people check out this website: Landbuddy.  They have an interactive map so you can see where other preppers are looking at land and can meet up and work out deals on parcels of land that may be too big or expensive for one person to buy. And before you buy here are more tips on BOL’s

Here are a few suggestions of places to get you started in your search for a reasonably priced property:

Red Oak, Latimer County – Oklahoma

http://www.landwatch.com/Oklahoma_land_for_sale/Red_Oak

Tennessee  http://www.tnland.com/specials/

Anderson, Missouri   Sugar Creek Realty

http://www.andersonmo-realestate.com/

Sierra Blanco, Texas

http://www.realtor.com/realestateandhomes-search/Sierra-Blanca_TX/type-land

Hettinger, North Dakota

http://www.westernedgerealty.com/realestate.htm

Pennsboro West Virginia

http://www.landwatch.com/West_Virginia_land_for_sale/Pennsboro

Ozark Mountains – Arkansas

http://www.arkhaven.org/arkansas_real_estate.htm

Kentucky

http://www.billyland.com/Kentucky-Land-for-Sale/Auctions?utm_source=aw&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=ky&utm_content=Buy+Cheap+Kentucky+Land

The Most Hardcore Bug Out Vehicles for Doomsday

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by Megan

Most preppers create their bug out vehicle by adding supplies and gear to whatever vehicle they already own. Some preppers are able to purchase a used vehicle or perhaps make some modifications to their existing vehicle in their buddy’s garage.

But what if money were no object? What if you could purchase the bug out vehicle of your dreams? Below are some of the ones we’ve pulled together, not as a best of the best list but just to help you dream a little bit. These are your hardcore bug out vehicles, the ones you’d consider if money were no object. Most of these are going to draw attention so make sure you’re ready to defend against anyone trying to overtake you.

  1. Military Surplus M35

But out with your family, duck dynasty style, with the military surplus, M35, is a two-and-a-half ton-truck also referred to as a “deuce and a half” seen in this video:

Originally intended as a truck for medical transport during combat, it can be bobbed and renovated into the perfect bug out vehicle. It’s a multi-fuel vehicle with a 55-gallon tank, six-wheel drive and manual transmission that can get up to 13 mpg which means you can run for up to 650 miles on one tank of fuel. A bobbed truck is also lighter and shorter which increases the manufacturer’s top speed of 55 mph to 75mph.

  1. 6-wheel Drive Expedition RV

With over 200 square foot of cargo space available plus a root top tent accessible by roof hatch, 50-gallon fuel tanks, and Caterpillar turbo charged multi-fuel engine, this expand van has room for whatever you need to get into it, including an ATV. It will hold up to 22 people if need be or any equipment you need to carry.

  1. Creek Stewart’s Modified 1985 CUCV (Commercial Utility Cargo Vehicle)

Creek Stewart is a well-known survivalist. His personal BOV debuted in his first season of his show, Fat Guys in the Woods.

His BOV is a diesel engine and has a black-out switch that cuts all vehicle lights in an instant so you be in instant stealth mode. He’s added a cab and carries 30 gallons of extra fuel, all his tools and gear and six spare tires! He has modified it to include an extra battery and solar charger, off-road lights, a fire extinguisher, an off the roof shelter canopy, and a 12,000-pound winch.

  1. 1987 Mercedes Expedition Truck

Custom built 1987 Mercedes Expedition truck is as reliable as they come. There are 6 bolts to disconnect the living unit from the truck. It has a 550-liter diesel tank, spare tires, front and rear winches. It comes with its own hot water heater, refrigerator, propane stove, shower, composting toilet, and massive amounts of storage for all your gear.

Earthcruiser Overland RV Expedition Vehicle

Bug out in style with this Earthcruiser Expedition RV.

It uses yachting industry engineering to keep the vehicle compact and lightweight but still luxurious. With its own power system controlled with a command panel, you can make a quick getaway when needed, going from camping mode to on the go within sixty seconds without having to leave the vehicle. It has an onboard water purifier to clean whatever water source you can access.

  1. UNICAT Survival Home on Wheels

If you aren’t worried about looks and are focused more on function survival, then this UNICAT Survival home on wheels might be just the ticket.

Able to be fully self-contained in the wilderness for up to two months, it carries 110 gallons of water and its own desalination system that operates from the rooftop solar panel. The price tag starts at $700K so it’s definitely not a vehicle for the average prepper.

  1. The Intimidator

This truck is truly unstoppable with bullet proof armor and 5-point racing harness seating for up to five people.

It has a 220- gallon tank, which can take you 2200 miles without stopping and level 4 armor windows. It comes with a lockable roof hatch in case you do need to take a shot while on the move. It carries its own solar powered battery charger and has a 14-foot bed with plenty of room for all your bug out supplies. Cummins 8.3-liter diesel engine with the radiator protected behind a bullet proof grille. They may hear or see you coming but they won’t be able to do anything about it.

  1. Judge Dredd inspired Land Rover

How about this fortress on wheels inspired by the Judge Dredd movie starring Sly Stallone and designed by Land Rover to survive the meanest streets in the 23rd century where the world is in anarchy and chaos.

  1. Survivor Truck

Here’s an extreme truck, the personal vehicle of Jim Delozier, owner of the Survivor Truck company. His company can custom build just about any type of vehicle modification you want. He uses his truck as a rescue vehicle. It has a complete Exo cage and is outfitted with Rhino lining, has anywhere from 6-8 cameras at any given time watching all angles. It also has a generator, a winch, vehicle tent on the roof, and a battery powered system, rollaway toolbox, and a refrigerator. He plans to swap in a multi-fuel diesel engine.

  1. 2003 Cargo Van turned camper

For the more realistic prepper who has time and skill to do some modifications, you might want to try something similar to this 2003 Cargo Van turned camper

Okay so for most of us, these hardcore bug out vehicles are out of reach. We have to be a little more realistic when it comes to our choice of bug out vehicle. So what is really important when you are trying to choose your bug out vehicle and how can you make sure that your vehicle is going to get you and your family out safely?

There are seven criteria you want to consider when choosing your practical bug out vehicle:

Reliability

One of the most important issues is reliability of your vehicle. When you need to bug out, you must be able to count on your vehicle to start up quickly and to operate reliably. The primary purpose of your bug out vehicle is to get you to your bug out location and beyond if necessary. Learn how to make basic repairs yourself. Make sure that replacement parts are easy to get and won’t be overly expensive. Stock up on parts that are apt to wear out or break when the vehicle is pushed to its maximum speed or driven over rough terrain.

Traveling Range

When choosing your vehicle, you want to get the most miles of range on one tank of gas as you can get. You won’t want to stop every 300 miles or so to refuel. And fuel won’t be readily available unless you’ve stocked up. Get a diesel or multi-fuel vehicle if you can get it. Horsepower is also important.

When you bug out, your vehicle should be setup to get you as far away as possible before having to refuel. If the tank is small, you should plan and practice how to refuel as quickly as possible. To be really prepared, modify the fuel tank so you can refuel from inside the vehicle from your fuel stock. The best vehicle should also have the horsepower to outrun most anyone who might be following you.

Off Road Capability

Definitely try to get AWD or 4-wheel drive in your vehicle if possible. Suspension shocks and brakes if you can get them. Minimally you want a vehicle that doesn’t sit low to the ground so that you can drive over smaller debris without causing damage to the underside of your vehicle. Make sure it will be able to handle at least most of the terrain in your area so you won’t be forced to stick to the paved roads.

Safety and Security

Whatever vehicle you get, the first thing to do is to replace all the windows with plexi-glass which is stronger and more shatter resistant than glass. You will also want to install a bumper guard to protect the lights and radiator. Depending on how the vehicle rides and the terrain in your area, you may want to swap out regular seat belts for five-point racing harnesses at least for any children that may be on the trip.

Ramming Ability

In a natural disaster or post-SHTF scenario you are going to come up against roads blocked by debris, fallen trees, or even abandoned cars. Having a bug out vehicle that you know can ram or push things out of the way so you can keep moving forward is a huge plus.

Carry Capacity

The final thing you want to look at when deciding on a bug out vehicle is carrying capacity. This means both number of passengers that you can take with you as well as how much cargo space or storage space you have. If your favorite vehicle hits the mark for reliability and traveling range but doesn’t have much cargo space, consider modifications that will allow you to bolt or buckle gear securely to the top and sides.

Off-Grid Capability

This category is not a necessity for a bug out vehicle but it would be a plus if you had a vehicle that included some off-grid capabilities. Obviously most vehicles now do include some power outlets to recharge your phone or laptop. But it would be great to have a vehicle that is equipped with or modified to include solar panels so you can re-charge the vehicle battery if needed or run a small refrigerator.

Also make sure you think about bathroom needs not just when parked but while on the move too. If you have to go and you’re being followed, there won’t be time to pull off in the woods for a pit stop. The other thing to think about is water. Modify your vehicle so it includes some type of high capacity water storage. Even 5 gallon jugs strapped to the inside walls of the vehicle is better than nothing. Having large amount of water stored in your vehicle means that you have more options as to where you can camp for the night.

EMP Resistance

There is some debate over what the effects of an EMP would actually be but it is certain that if there is damage, it will be to electronic components and systems for vehicles with running engines at the time of the EMP. Cars and trucks that are turned off during an EMP are not expected to experience any effects.

Electronic components were not integrated into cars until the late 1960’s. Electronic components were abundant in cars from 1986 and on. Modern vehicles (roughly 1990’s and newer) have required EMI/EMC (electromagnetic interference and electromagnetic compatibility) standards designed to reduce vulnerability.

Once you’ve chosen a vehicle based on the other criteria above, it’s important to know which parts of your vehicle have electronic components. Research the compliance of the electronic parts with EMI/EMC standards, including grounding, shielding, hardening, and immunity. Be prepared to replace these parts if needed.

This article showcased some hardcore prepping vehicles with some great survival features. Regardless of the bug out vehicle you choose, make sure you’ve thought about the seven categories and have planned for as many scenarios as you can think of. It will be great if your trip from home to BOL is uneventful but chances are you will run up against one or more unplanned obstacles, so just be ready.

Tell us how your bug out vehicle measures up in these 7 areas below in the comments.

How to Escape Quicksand

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by Jared

It used to be everywhere, but now you’d be hard pressed to find a modern movie showcasing a quicksand rescue attempt.  The fascination with the threat of quicksand in movies peaked in the 70’s, but it’s still out there in the wild waiting to suck you in. More or less.

Quicksand is a legitimate concern when exploring the wild, especially when on your own. The quicksand itself probably won’t kill you, but you do risk exposure to the elements if unable to free yourself.

Before we look at how to escape from quicksand, we’ll try to understand what it exactly is and some environments you might find it in.

Quicksand can occur in any environment with the right conditions. Water is an essential part of the formula. Quicksand is basically soil that has become oversaturated with water, which negates the normal friction that occurs between soil particles.  So the sand particles cannot hold on to each other, resulting in a soupy mixture of liquified soil.

A good breakdown of quicksand can be found here.

Quicksand Areas

Beaches

On the open coastline you’ll find the occasional quicksand pocket on the shore near the ocean.  Small pools will sometimes form as the tide moves in and out, fed by underground springs or runoff water.  As the sand becomes saturated quicksand forms.

On an open sandy beach, free of foliage or grass, these tide pools should be fairly easy to spot and avoid.  Telltale signs are bubbling, murky sand at the bottom of a tide pool with clear water above.  Wandering through tide pools, you will usually encounter some form of liquid sand. If you want to avoid the quicksand on the beach, avoid the tide pools.

The rising ocean tide is your biggest threat if caught in quicksand on the beach, and drowning is a real possibility. Here’s a short clip of quicksand on a beach:

Riverbanks

Quicksand is pretty common on the banks of rivers as well as near river deltas that form as streams run into larger bodies of waterLook for saturated ground near the edge of a river when near, though the ground will sometimes appear fairly firm. The two videos below detail just how deceptive quicksand can be.

What can appear and feel to be solid ground can quickly turn to dirt soup if activated.  In one of the videos linked above the guy is sitting on what appears to be solid ground, then with a few quick stomps he turns it into quicksand and starts sinking.

This type of quicksand is the most dangerous, as it gives no outward appearance of its true nature.  If walking in a group, this type of quicksand won’t take hold until the second or third person walks across.

It is also fairly common to find quicksand beneath the surface of the water, away from the bank.  Precautions should be taken when trying to cross rivers; especially silty and muddy waters where you cannot see the bottom. Sometimes it may be better to swim than wade across, but each situation should be evaluated on an individual basis.

 Marshes and Swamps

Where the ocean meets freshwater bays and marshlands is another common spot for quicksand.  The marshlands are great areas for fishing, shellfishing, and hunting fowl.  The abundance of water plants and grasses can also hamper the ability to detect potential quicksand threats. Great care should be taken when exploring marshes and beaches at low tide to avoid potential quicksand and sinkholes.

Interesting video below of a bay in the UK with quicksand potential.

Swamplands also breed quicksand due to their standing water coupled with underwater springs.

The visibility and ability to detect potential quicksand is even lower in the swamps due to the abundance of foliage, grasses, fallen trees and limbs, and standing water.

Swamps are heavily saturated areas fed by runoff, underground springs, rivers,  and streams.

Long tracts of standing water going through a forest, with no trail or clues to solid ground should set off internal warnings about quicksand danger.

Additionally, swamps in the U.S. are home to several varieties of poisonous snakes, alligators, crocodiles, and even the occasional python. Being stuck in quicksand here is the least ideal, as swamps don’t get many visitors.

Near Underground Springs

Most year around ponds or lakes that you will come across are fed by one or more underwater springs in addition to any runoff or streams that flow into them.  Underwater springs feeding upwards through already saturated soil can create quicksand along the banks, or in the water itself.

Underwater springs can be found anywhere, even in the desert.

In a floods and other natural disasters, quicksand can form near broken water lines that function in the same way as natural springs to disrupt the soil.

Pretty interesting underwater video of quicksand bubbling up through freshwater springs.

Prevention

As always the best remedy is prevention.   Through all the places you might find quicksand, water is the common element.   If you find yourself nearing waterways, or heavily saturated ground keep the possibility of quicksand on your radar.

When testing unknown waters,  it is best to remove your backpack and other cumbersome items.  The last thing you want is to have all your gear soaked, and if you do encounter quicksand or find yourself taken by the current, it will all weigh you down and may have to be abandoned.

It also doesn’t hurt to have some sort of walking stick handy when you’re out exploring, especially when dealing with a river or stream.  You want to have a sturdy hardwood stick or pole that is at least shoulder height that you can use to steady yourself near riverbanks or lakes.

A good idea for navigating potential quicksand areas, is to just use your walking stick as a probe for the area ahead of you as you walk. If your probe gives a little too easily, or you see the soupy ripples of quicksand, use your walking stick to navigate firm passage around the area in question.

It is best to use your probe to survey an area at least wide enough to walk, and keep your steps within that area as there can be sharp variations between firm ground and quicksand.  Keep your weight balanced and not leaning forward so that you don’t go swimming in after your pole if it does find quicksand.

If you do slip in, hold your walking stick horizontally to try to catch the edges of the quicksand pit for leverage rather than trying to push it vertically for traction. When you come across quicksand, mark its boundary clearly with an obstacle for yourself on your return trip or for others in the future.

Escaping

If you find yourself stepping in quicksandconsider trying to sit or fall backwards toward solid ground if possible.  The sooner you react, the less chance you have of being really stuck.  If you do find yourself sinking quickly, unable to turn back :

  1. Relax, don’t fight it. The more you struggle, the deeper you dig yourself.

As soon as you realize you’ve hit quicksand, you must fight the urge to panic.

Instead, take an immediate survey of your surrounding area and begin to plan your extraction.

Alert any persons in your group to stay back, and try to determine the boundary of the quicksand. Try to quickly assess any immediate dangers ( tide coming in, fast moving river, poisonous snakes)

  1. Use slow, deliberate movements

If you are stuck below your knees in quicksand, chances are you can get yourself back to solid ground with a little effort and less mess.  Try to slowly pull one leg free towards safety, with the least amount of unnecessary motion possible. If you can get one leg free, chances are you can get the other one too.

If you find yourself sinking very quickly and going past your knees, make sure your arms are up, and prepare to try to float and do some “mud-swimming”.

  1. Disperse your weight

The reason you sink so quickly in quicksand, is all of your weight is balanced onto your two feet.  If you can lay back and try to allow yourself to float before you sink too deeply in, you will have less work to do. The deeper you sink, the denser the quicksand and the more suction is created as your feet sink into the muck.

Quicksand is denser than water, so you can float in it.  The thickness and viscosity of quicksand varies widely however, with some more perilous than others. You will need your legs free, and the longer you wait to try disperse your weight, the deeper you will sink.

Video of a guy attempting to escape quicksand near a river:

  1. Grab On

Any tree roots, branches, firmly rooted grasses, or other items within reach can be used as leverage. If you are with a group, use a rope or tree branch to pull person out, not your hands. You want to have the rescuer safely away from the quicksand’s edge. If there’s nothing within reach, you’ve got to do it yourself.

  1. Swim and then Crawl

Once you get your legs free and your body horizontal, slowly make your way towards the edge of the pit. You will have to use a sort of army crawl, slow swimming breast stroke motion to escape. Keep in mind that the more frantic your motions, the more soupy the quicksand becomes.

Good videos of Bear Grylls explaining and escaping quicksand.

Summary

Quicksand is not at the top of my list of concerns in the wild, but knowing what to look for and how to escape are good things to have in the emergency reference section of the brain. This kind of information could be the determining factor between just having some muddy clothes and a serious situation.

Things You Can Cut Back on When Prepping

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We all know prepping isn’t easy. Heck, with increasing grocery prices and uncertainty in the economy, is extremely difficult for most of us to afford to live in the here and now. Trying to purchase extra food, water, and supplies can stretch some people’s budgets so thin it can be difficult to manage. If you think there is just no way you can adequately prep, take some time to consider ways in which you can cut back on the things on which you currently spend your hard-earned money.

I can guarantee that most of you have areas in your life in which you can cut back enough to lower your expenses. However, in order to do this, you need to take a long, hard look at your lifestyle, you need to be ready to redefine what you consider necessities, and you need to be ready to give some things up (or at least cut back on them) to free up some cash flow. Chances are, if you’re a prepper, you have already taken at least a cursory look at how you live, but this might require you to go deeper and make a commitment to change.

What You Really Need

As a prepper, you have already determined what you really need to survive. That’s the whole point of being a prepper, to stock up on the absolute necessities of life so that when times get bad you can still survive. Preppers are stocking up on the basics for survival, not the latest fashions in clothes, a year’s worth of lattes, or the nicest sports car out there. So, when it comes to what you really need in everyday life, take a page out of your prepper book. Am I saying give up everything? Of course not. We do still have to live a little, but we also have to put things into perspective. Here is what we actually need for physical survival in our current world:

  • Food
  • Water
  • Shelter
  • Clothing
  • Items for personal hygiene
  • Anything that is required to earn an income (such as internet and a laptop, if you work from home as a freelancer)
  • A vehicle if you live in rural area (although I have known people who didn’t have one and still managed just fine)

Having said that, human beings have other needs that go beyond the physical. Ever heard of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs? We have the physiological needs (the ones I mentioned in the list above) first and foremost, but when those are met, we also have the need to feel safe, that we are loved and belong, and that we can achieve goals, be respected by others, and find self-fulfillment. There is spending involved in many of these endeavors, but there are still ways to cut back. Let’s take a look.

Suggestions for Ways to Cut Back

Home

There are so many ways you can save money just by changing the way you do things at home. We spend a lot of money on living a lifestyle that few of us can truly afford and none of us really need. From the size of your home to what you do in it you can cut back in so many ways.

  • Move into a smaller home: Many people live in homes that are far bigger (and more expensive) than they need
  • Get rid of cable or satellite TV: If you need to have something to watch, streaming sites like Netflix are much cheaper
  • Cut back your phone and internet services to basic (unless you need them for business)
  • Don’t carry both a landline and a cell phone
  • Don’t get data on your cell phone, instead stick with talk and text
  • Wash in cold water and line-dry your clothing
  • Be aware of hidden costs in everything you pay, including credit and bills, and negotiate lower fees where possible
  • Pay off your debts (that interest is killing you!)
  • Make sure your house is well-insulated and energy efficient

Food

Food is expensive, especially if you are trying to eat healthy. Despite this, there are still ways you can cut down on the amount of money you spend on food, such as with the following suggestions:

  • Cook from scratch (it’s far less expensive than prepackaged food)
  • Cook large quantities of food at a time and freeze or can the extra
  • Grow a garden
  • Learn how to hunt and forage for food
  • Buy in bulk or when things are on sale
  • Don’t buy prepared food, such as pre-cut fruit and vegetables
  • Buy whole chickens and cut them up, it’s cheaper than buying chicken parts
  • Buy less expensive brands when you can do so without compromising on quality
  • Cut out or back on junk food, you don’t need it and it’s sucking up your money
  • Stop buying bottled water and get a water filtration system (it might seem costly up front, but it will save you loads of money in the long-run)
  • Set up a system to collect and purify rainwater
  • Instead of wasting food that will soon go bad, make a meal out of food that needs to be used up each week
  • Shop from the bottom shelves because grocery store makes sure the pricier products are at eye-level
  • Use coupons!

Entertainment/Lifestyle

This might be where most people can cut back the most. The types of things we do for fun, the frequency with which we do it, and the extravagance we take. We can often have a good time with less or while staying closer to home. Should we stop going out and having fun? Of course not! We should still enjoy the things in life before the apocalypse comes, but we need to be smarter about it. Here are suggestions of how to cut back on expenses with our entertainment and lifestyle choices:

  • Get rid of your gym membership and start working out in ways that are free: Running, walking, biking, hiking, and resistance exercises can all be done for free at home or out in nature
  • Cut back on Starbucks (or your money hole of choice): Yes, Starbucks is wonderful (I’ve bought my weight in chai lattes I’m sure), but you can get their products in grocery stores for a fraction of the cost; you don’t have to cut it out, but cut it back
  • Use your car less often and walk, bike, or use public transportation
  • Set a limit on how much you are allowed to spend each day
  • Do more things together as a family at home, such as playing board games, learning a hobby together, or watching a movie
  • If you see something you want, walk away, and if you still want it two days or a week later, then go back and get it; chances are the desire you felt for it will have passed by then
  • Stay home on your vacation or do something local, such as camping or visiting local attractions
  • Set a monthly entertainment/shopping budget and stick to it: This might be $50 or $100 a month and you’ll need to choose whether you’ll spend that on a movie, going out to dinner with friends, or a new pair of shoes
  • We need clothing and shoes, but buying them on sale or at thrift shops saves lots of money
  • Don’t pay for a brand name just for the sake of the name when you can just as good quality for less when you buy non-brand name items (this goes for anything you buy)
  • One man’s garbage is another man’s treasure: If you see something someone is throwing out that you can use, take it and use it
  • Get used furniture and fix it up
  • Keep your vehicle tuned up and your filters changed regularly, which will increase your gas mileage
  • Make use of craigslist when you need items you can buy used
  • Don’t use your credit cards, if you have them; instead save up for what you want or need
  • When it comes to gift-giving, think carefully about whether you need to buy something and about the possibility of giving something hand-made, used, or consumable

Final Words of Advice

These are all ways in which you can cut your spending and save money. It might seem like a little here and a little there, but it all adds up to hundreds of dollars a year. If you can do these things and set money aside at the same time, then you will really be ahead of the game. Even if you can only put away a dollar a day, by the end of the year, that’s $365 in the bank.

If you aren’t sure where you are overspending or where you can cut back, print out your bank account statements from the past two or three months and go through them. You can see where you money is going and can have a clearer picture of where you think too much is being spent on certain items or on certain categories of expenses, such as food or clothes.  You can list out the following categories and track your expenses for each, averaging them on a per-month basis:

  • Mortgage or Rent
  • Utilities
  • Groceries
  • Clothing
  • Car payments
  • Telephone/Cell phone
  • Cable/Satellite
  • Internet
  • School expenses
  • Vehicle operation and maintenance (fuel, repairs)
  • Insurance
  • Credit card and other debt payments
  • Extracurricular activities for all members of the family
  • Recreational spending (includes eating out and entertainment activities)
  • Gifts
  • Miscellaneous (everything else!)

Ultimately, you need to be smart and do without or with less. The key is to find the balance where you feel less stressed about money, but not totally deprived of the good things in life. Then you can take at least some of that extra money and invest it in your preps and you will be ready for whatever disaster or hard times come down the pike. You will be happy and content now and be happier and more content than most people when times get tough.

The Hottest Steals and Deals from GearBest

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Can you make fire under a lean-to shelter?

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That’s what one writer I wanted to hire wrote in the demo article. According to her, “the smoke goes out the sides while the heat trapped”.

Now, although I have strong opinions on things in general, I’m always looking to expand my knowledge. I don’t know anyone who’s actually put fire inside a shelter which, in my opinion, is downright dangerous… so I’m asking you guys:

Do you think building fire under a lean-to shelter is ok or do you think it’s dangerous?

There’s an obvious risk of the tarp or the branches used for the lean to could catch fire. There are some ways to make it work, such as using a tarp that’s flame retardant. Even so, it appears most tarps will burn if exposed to open flames.

As you know, due to lack of time most of the articles written here are from other writers, so I have to do my best to avoid publishing info that could not only be inaccurate and not based on personal experience, but could actually be deadly.

3 Ways to Start a Fire With Sticks

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by Jeanie

It looks easy until you try it yourself. We all kind of know the theory but once it comes down to actually starting a fire with two sticks panic sets in as your rub away and people peer over your should going – “Hasn’t it started yet?” and “Why isn’t it working?” You control the urge to shove one of the sticks down said questioner’s throat and grit your teeth, muttering things about the right type of wood and rates of rotational friction.

Theoretically starting a fire this way should be easy but in real life situations where a person ends up without a box of matches or a cigarette lighter it usually means everything else has broken down and you are in an extreme situation, – in the woods, possibly it’s windy and raining, and you have no transport nearby (cars have built in cigarette lighters…)

What you need:

Before we even discuss the methods available to start a fire it is very important to have your materials ready –starting a fire then hunting for materials to feed it just sabotages your efforts – rather too much material than too little. First you need tinder, kindling and the some sticks and later even logs to feed your fire and keep it going. Make sure these are dry and collected, ready to use.

What makes the best tinder?

  • Dried dandelion fluff
  • Fine dry grass – the thinner the blades of grass the better
  • Cattail fluff
  • Tinder fungus – found under the bark of living birch trees only. (Forget about the fungus under dead birch tree bark – it won’t light.)
  • Cedar bark shavings and birch bark shavings
  • Cotton ball coated with Vaseline (if you have a bug out bag with you and these have been pre-prepared)

Tip: Explore your local area so you know what can be used. If you are going on holiday to an exotic location make yourself familiar with local plants through internet searches so you aren’t left in the dark should SHTF, something like the December 26th 2004 tsunami in South East Asia.

What makes the best kindling?

  • Dry pine needles and dry pinecones
  • Dried herbivore dung – its basically chewed up grass and is used a lot in Africa and Asia for fires if there isn’t much wood around
  • Very small dried sticks – from matchstick to pencil size preferably softwoods that are more resinous
  • Dry leaves

Tip: For serious preppers don’t wait until you’re in a dire situation – check out what makes the best kindling. It’s a great activity to do with kids as they discover which burns best and then they will be able to help and collect the right stuff instead of “helping” by bringing a lot of useless material. Again if you are travelling and are gathered around a campfire at night check what the locals use for kindling and chat about the merits of what is available in their country.

A friend travelled with Bedouins over the Sahara and was intrigued that they picked up any piece of polystyrene and bits of driftwood they found lying around when they were close to the Suez Canal – they weren’t cleaning up – it was useful as kindling to make their nightly campfires deeper in the desert.

Methods to start a fire

There are three basic methods: the hand drill, the fire plow and the bow drill.

The Hand Srill

This takes some skill to master but the bonus is if you have nothing much to hand you can still make a fire. Basically you are holding a stick upright with your palms facing each other, spread flat while rotating the stick and pressing downward with the stick to create greater friction to generate enough heat for an ember to form at the base of the stick.

The secret with this is not to pause – you need to keep up the pressure and rotational friction to start that tip of the stick glowing, once you see smoke do not stop – keep up unto you have the coal dust dropping from the notch onto a piece of bark positioned so the dust is not in contact with the ground and can be transferred to the tinder:

Selecting the Sticks

You need one straight stick a little thicker than a pencil, around 12 to 15 inches long and preferably fairly smooth so you don’t hurt your hands, a prepper with blisters from fire-starting is just not good bush craft. The stick can be shaped to a point if you have a pocketknife – if not select a stick that naturally goes to something of a point.

Secondly select you fireboard – in the woods you are unlikely to find a flat piece but choose a bigger flattish stick that you can hold comfortably between your feet to keep it steady. (You are going to need both hands for the fire-starter stick.)

Choose a natural hollow in the fireboard or dig out a small depression if you have a pocket- knife to keep the fire-starter stick in place. No pocketknife and no natural hollow?  Find a piece of stone with a sharp edge and use that to dig out the depression.

Getting ready to fire-start

You can cut a notch into the edge of the depression toward the edge of the wood to allow the ember to drop onto a small bit of tinder, the notch must be small so the fire stick doesn’t slip out of place into the gap. If there is someone who can help nearby they should have the tinder placed nearby the stick and fireboard ready for that ember – and have their hands cupped to protect the first bit of smoke from wind before the fire catches.

I have watched Native Australians start a fire fairly quickly using this two-man method. As the flame starts the assistant will gently breathe to help it along. Doing things alone is that much more difficult as precious seconds are wasted putting down the fire stick and bending down to the tinder – so train family members to help.

The Fire plow

For the fire plow you need a flattish piece of wood into which you can carve a channel with your knife or a sharp flint along the length of the wood. The board should be soft enough that you can make a mark in it with your fingernail. Once you have your channel you need to hold it steady with your knees. Your fire stick, which should be a harder wood around 15 inches long and roughly the thickness of a large pencil should be held at a 35 to 45 degree angle with both hands and moved up and down the channel vigorously. You will work up a sweat!

As the stick, which should be a harder wood than the board creates heated dust or fine shavings from the friction these will drop from the end of the board onto your carefully placed tinder.

The Bow Drill

Here you are taking the pressure off your hands and transferring it to the bow made from a bent piece of wood with a piece of string or leather, a shoelace or drawstring cord from your shorts looped around the bow. Basically you still need your fireboard and the fire–stick as explained in the Hand Drill method. You will need a piece of hardwood for the bearing block that holds the fire-stick steady – you press down on this with one hand while using the other hand to move the bow with the cord looped around the fire-stick back and forth to create an ember. The bearing block can be made also be made from stone – if you can find one with a depression in it to hold the fire stick steady from above. Some knives now come with a bearing block built into the handle, but should be used only if it is possible for the knife to be sheathed while in use with the bearing block – no one needs wants to risk being cut by the blade should the fire-stick slip!

Best types of wood to use for fire sticks

Certain woods are easier to use, sotol and yucca being the easiest, but then these don’t occur everywhere.  If you look here you will find a list of woods – varying from great for fire starting to extremely difficult. Where you live will determine which woods would be easily available, so make sure you know your local trees and their merits as firewood thoroughly. A harder wood for the fire stick and a softer wood for the fireboard is a good combination.

When can I use hardwood?

Since hardwood is denser and burns for longer use it only once you have used the softwoods with their resinous content to get a strong stead flame going.

Moisture content in wood

You will need super dry wood for your fire-sticks. How does one determine moisture content without a meter? Check the weight of your stick against other sticks of the same size and same type of wood and choose the one lightest in weight, as it will have less moisture content. Hardwoods are heavier and denser than softwoods so you need to compare apples with apples so to speak. Generally a soft wood will be quicker for fire starting. Also split a stick in half to see if it snaps easily, the higher the moisture content the more difficult it will be to snap.

Where to find dry wood

Look for seasoned smaller twigs (that’s wood that has been exposed for a long time to dry) that have fallen and got tangled in trees rather than ones on the ground as the rising dampness may have made them useless for fire starting. Check trees for dead branches –they should snap easily and be light in weight. If they bend before snapping there is too much moisture content. Also check piles of leaves and twigs for the smaller ones towards the center that haven’t been in contact with the ground or wet from rain from above. Trees with a large spreading canopy provide some protection unless the rain is very heavy – so foraging close to the bases of trees on the opposite side to the direction of the rain should yield some dry material.

Building the Fire

Use the classic teepee shape – you can either build this beforehand, leaving space to insert the bundle of tinder or build the teepee as you go along – once the tinder is burning add the match stick size bits, then the pencil sized bit of wood, an extra bit of grass to increase the flame if necessary and slowly building to the outer hardwoods.

How to Turn Salt Water into Drinking Water

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by Nicholas

Even though you can’t drink salt water, otherwise known as saline water, what you can do is turn it into fresh water, through a process called desalination. This process is being used more and more as a viable means to get freshwater for those who need it. It’s also very applicable in a survival or grid down scenario where freshwater may not be so available.

Throughout most of the United States, the overwhelming majority of people are able to access more than enough freshwater.  However, in some areas of the country, freshwater is in shorter supply. With the population of the country growing, this means that freshwater shortages could become more prevalent, making it a major issue our country and other countries could face.

As a result of our freshwater supplies becoming more strained, seawater is becoming more of an important resource across the globe.  Many nations have debated the use of renewable-powered, solar desalination power plants and several have already begun to set them up.  Only time will tell if these power plants are successful or not.

THE DANGERS OF DRINKING SALINE WATER

It’s ultimately more dangerous to drink high quantities of saline or salt water than it is to not drink it at all. Consuming excessive amounts of salt can destroy the kidneys. The human kidneys are simply not designed to be able to handle such a large volume of salt. Furthermore, a large intake of salt makes you thirstier, and could cause you to want to drink more saline water.  For every gallon of salt water that you drink you’ll need to drink at least one gallon of freshwater to ‘get back to normal’ so to speak.

When your body does not receive the freshwater it needs, it starts to shut down beginning with your internal organs and then your brain. Once your brain becomes affected, you will begin to lose your normal mental cognition, start hallucinating, and maybe even go crazy. If you get literally no freshwater into your body, you can die in about three days.

To put it in broader terms, drinking large volumes of saline water without getting any freshwater into your body only increases the speed of dehydration. If you’re out in the sun and sweating while this happens, then the process of dehydration occurs even faster.

This is why it is such a valuable skill to be able to turn saline/salt water into freshwater. Desalination is easily your best defense against dehydration if you have nearly unlimited access to salt water but absolutely no access to fresh water.

Unfortunately, turning saline water into freshwater is a skill that not very many people know. But it’s also an incredibly simple skill, at least in theory. The reason why this skill could be considered ‘simple’ is because all that it involves is removing the dissolved salt in the saline water in order to make it freshwater. The only thing that makes this process not so simple is the actual process for doing it.

Fortunately, we’re going to teach you three different methods for how you can turn saline water into fresh water. Anyone who lives in or near an area close to the coast should absolutely learn desalination. If you lack access to rivers and lakes or if you encounter a drought, gathering water from the ocean may be your only realistic option. In this scenario, it could very well be that this skill is what saves your life.

WHAT GIVES WATER ITS SALINITY?

Saline water is defined as water that contains a significant concentration of dissolved salt. The concentration of salt is measured by the weight of the salt in the water, or parts per million (abbreviated as PPM).
If the water has a concentration of around ten thousand PPM of dissolved salt in it, then that means that at least one percent of the total weight of the water has come from those dissolved salts.
Here is how water is classified in regards to PPM:

  • 1,000 PPM or Less = Fresh Water
  • 1,000 PPM – 3,000 PPM = Slightly Saline Water
  • 3,000 PPM – 10,000 PPM = Moderate Saline Water
  • 10,000 PPM to 35,000 PPM (and beyond) = Heavy Saline Water

You might be wondering what category oceans fall into out of these four categories. Oceans have a concentration of at least 35,000 PPM, meaning that they are heavy in saline water. But since the three methods of converting saline water into fresh water works for saline water from the oceans, you can take comfort in knowing that it will work for all of the other categories as well.

Next, let’s start with our first of three methods for turning salt water into fresh water:

METHOD #1 – SOLAR DESALINATION METHOD

This method is the most commonly used of our three methods, which is why we will discuss it first. To do this method properly, use the following steps:

  1. Make sure that you have enough sunlight for an extended period of time, since this process will take several hours to complete.
  1. Collect your desired amount of salt water in a watertight bowl, but do not fill up the bowl all the way.
  1. Place a smaller cup into the center of the bowl slowly, so that none of the salt water splashes or gets into the cup; if this happens, the fresh water will be contaminated as it is collected and you’ll need to get a new cup.
  1. Ensure that the lip of this container remains firmly above the water as well.
  1. Cover the entire bowl with a sturdy type of plastic wrap, but without making the plastic wrap too loose or too tight.
  1. Confirm that the plastic wrap is completely airtight with absolutely no holes, slits, or escape points whatsoever.
  1. Seal the plastic wrap around the rim of your main bowl.
  1. Place a weight of some kind, such as a small rock, in the middle of the plastic wrap and right above the cup in the middle of the bowl; if the weight is too heavy, it will tear through the plastic wrap and you’ll have to start over.
  1. This will result in your plastic wrap dipping towards the center, so that fresh water can more easily drip into your cup.
  1. Next, take everything that you have so far and place it under the direct sunlight. The sunlight will heat the water and you’ll see condensation begin to form underneath the plastic wrap.
  1. The droplets of fresh water forming underneath the plastic wrap will then slowly but steadily drip into your cup.
  1. Within a few hours, you should begin to have enough water in your plastic cup to drink.

You can repeat this process as often as you want until you get your desired amount of water. The freshwater that forms out of this method is also completely desalinated and therefore safe to drink.

A good visual demonstration of this method can be found here:

METHOD #2 – EVAPORATION DISTILLATION METHOD

Using this salt water to freshwater conversion method, you’ll be able to get more freshwater than with the previous method. But the trade-off is that this method requires you to use a little more energy to do it.  However, if you’re desperate for water, then expending that little bit of extra energy may be worth it.

Here is a step-by-step process for completing the evaporation distillation method properly:

  1. Take a metal bottle with a cork, and make a hole in the cork that is big enough for tubing to fit into.
  1. Fill the bottle with saline water, but leave a little space near the top, just like with the bowl of the previous method.
  1. Place your tube through your cork until it reaches the bottom part of the cork.
  1. Place the cork with the tubing through it into the top of your bottle.
  1. Run your tubing to another container or bottle that is shorter in height than your first bottle.
  1. Place the bottle over a source of heat, but be sure that the tubing does not get excessively hot.
  1. The water in your bottle should begin to boil and steam should form.
  1. The steam should then travel through the tubing and will convert into water when it drops out of the end of your tube and into the new container.

As with the previous method, the water in the new container will be completely desalinated and safe for drinking.

For a visual demonstration of how to do this method, click here:

METHOD #3 – POT AND STOVE METHOD

The third and final method, we will explore for turning salt water into drinking water, is the pot and stove method:

  1. Take a large pot that has a lid and an empty water glass or metal cup. The glass should be short enough so that you can put the lid over the pot.
  1. It is advisable to use a Pyrex cup or metal cup; plastic cups will melt. Other types of glass could possibly explode when they are exposed to intense heat.
  1. Pour salt water into the pot, but as with the previous method, leave some empty space near the top.
  1. Either before or after you pour in the salt water, place the cup into the pot as well. Make sure that absolutely no saline water gets into the cup, otherwise, your fresh water will become contaminated.
  1. Place the pot on your stove over a moderate to low heat and wait until the water boils. A slow boil is better than a rapid boil to prevent any of the salt water from getting into your cup.
  1. Turn the lid for the pot upside down, so that when the water vapor condenses onto the lid, it will more easily drip into the glass.
  1. The pot lid needs to be positioned so that its handle is hovering directly over the cup.
  1. If the upside down lid is not already sealed over the edges of the pot, seal it. If it’s not sealed, much of the steam, and along with it the freshwater, will escape.
  1. Within about twenty to thirty minutes, there should be enough water inside your glass to drink.
  1. Use an oven mitt or towel to remove the pot from the stove and wait before touching anything. Both the glass and the water inside will be extremely hot.
  1. When removing the glass, be careful that none of the remaining salt water in the pot gets into your glass.

Drink the water when it has cooled down to an acceptable temperature.  You can watch a visual demonstration of this method here:

CONCLUSION

What’s ironic about Earth is how water is in great abundance all around us, but less than a percent of it is actually safe to drink. As we discussed earlier in this article, drinking salt water can cause kidney failure, rapid dehydration, and can even lead to death. This is why it is so important that you know how you can convert salt water into safe for drinking freshwater when you only have access to salt water. Not only can learning this skill save your life, but it could save the lives of your family members as well.

 

How to Make a Family Survival Plan

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by Karen

It’s one thing to stock up on all the necessary food, water, and supplies and make a survival plan for a single person, but let’s face the truth of the matter. Most of us have more than one person to plan for and stocking up on necessary items is not enough. Many of us have a family that includes children and maybe even elderly or disabled relatives, and for this reason, we need to come up with a family survival plan that will ensure our loved ones have the best possible chance for survival under any conditions.

The goal behind a family survival plan is to ensure that not only do you have all the food, water, and supplies your family will need stocked up and ready to go, but that you have a solid plan in place to ensure that you all end up together at your desired location and that you all know what to do and how to communicate with each other no matter what happens. Let’s take a look and what you need to consider when creating a family survival plan.

Warming Them Up

Before you can make a family survival plan, you need to get the family on board. This can be challenging because not all family members might agree with the need for prepping. They might think it is not necessary because nothing ever happens where you live, or even worse, they might feel that they don’t need to worry about prepping because you’re doing it and they can just come to you if there is a disaster.  But perhaps the worst is when family just thinks prepping is a complete waste of time and money.

At least when family or friends say they’ll just show up on your doorstep with the SHTF, they believe it could happen (provided they aren’t joking around about it). You have to give them some tough love right then and there. Tell them now is their chance to jump onboard. After something bad happens, they won’t be welcome because you have your immediate family to take care of, but right now they are welcome to join the group and contribute.

If they come at you with the “nothing bad ever happens here” excuse, you will need to wake them up to the fact that just because it hasn’t, that doesn’t mean nothing ever will happen. Show them examples of people who thought the very same thing, but ended up with tragedy in their lives. Heck, you can even show them the news. If you watch enough of that, you are bound to think prepping might not be a bad idea.

If they think it’s just a waste of time and money, you will have to be crafty in order to convince them they are wrong. You can argue that having extra food and supplies on hand is actually something people commonly do and it can save money because as food prices go up (and they are going up!) and you rotate your stocks, you will be eating food today at the prices from six or eight months ago. As for time, it’s really very easy to stock up on items and make a bugout bag. You can show them how easy it is and how fun it can be.

You can also take anyone skeptical camping and let them use the tools you have. It will show them how useful the tools and skills are and they might even have fun doing it. Add a little storytelling to the mix and you just might sway them. Ultimately, they are your family and you know them best, so you need to figure out the right approach.

Know Why You’re Prepping

Honestly, everyone could prepare for a world-changing disaster, such as the collapse of the economy, a grid down event that covers a huge geographic area, or a nuclear war. If you are inclined to prepare a survival plan for these types of events, fabulous! But you might want to plan for other events that are more likely to happen close to home. These include things like winter storms, hurricanes, flooding, tornados, and forest fires.

What you prepare for will depend on where you live. If you live in the north of Canada, you won’t need to worry about hurricanes and tornados, but if you live in Florida, then flooding and hurricanes are a real risk. I won’t go into what you need to store away and how you need to plan for each of these disasters, but I will say that your survival plan will be different depending on the potential disasters you could face.

The best thing to do is to start with a basic plan and then list all the potential threats that might affect you. You can then adjust your basic survival plan according to these threats until you have everything covered. For instance, no matter what you are planning for, you should have a meeting place or rallying point for your family members. However, you don’t need to consider flood-proofing your house if you don’t live in a flood-prone area and you don’t have to store a year’s worth of firewood if you live in southern Texas.

Speaking of a Meeting Place…

As nice as it would be for all of your family members to be at home, or even in one place, when disaster strikes, this isn’t very probable. With work, school, extracurricular activities, grocery shopping, and leisure activities, your family will very likely be spread out when an event happens. You might also have extended family that will be coming to you from another location if crisis strikes. You need to be prepared for this.

Essentially, you need to set a location that will be a rallying point for every member of your family. Most of the time this is your home, which is straightforward enough. However, there are situations in which a different meeting location might be better, such as if your family members work and go to school in town, but live outside of town. Having everyone meet up at a certain location in town and then making their way home together would be wise.

It is important that you be very specific about the meeting place so that no one is waiting in one area, while other people are waiting in another area. For instance, if you are meeting at the local university, specify precisely where. Is it in someone’s office or on the front steps of a specific building? You also want to be sure the meeting location is easily accessible by everyone. This means trying to make it as equidistant as possible from everyone so it will take roughly the same amount of time for everyone to arrive.

Choose Your Bugout Location(s) and Know How to Get There

As a family, you should choose a primary bugout location (BOL) and one or two backup locations and plan out at least two or three routes to get to each of them. Your BOL can be another family member’s home or friend’s home that is out of town or someone’s cottage or camp. It can also be a local camp ground or national park. Just be sure that wherever you choose to bugout if it is somewhere you can stock up on food, water, and supplies, then do so.

Once you have determined where you will go, take a look at a map and plan out at least two driving routes to get there. You also need to consider how you will get there if you aren’t able to drive. If you don’t have a functioning vehicle and/or the roads are clogged up and you have to set out on foot you must determine whether there are routes you can follow, such as along a river, train tracks, or hydro lines.

Whatever routes you choose, you should drive/travel them to make sure of the time it takes to get to your BOL and what snags you might hit along the way. Naturally, you’re not going to do a test run of walking 100 miles with your kids in tow, but for the walking routes it is best if you can walk at least some of it with them and more of it on your own. This will still give you a feel for how you would fair in a real situation.

Create a Communication Plan

Because some or all of your family might be spread out when disaster strikes and there could be chaos in the streets, you should work out a plan for communicating with each other. You might not be able to rely on your cell phone, so you need to have at least one alternate form of communication. This can include:

  • Walkie-talkies (make sure they are good-quality, long-range units)
  • HAM radio or CB (you need a license to broadcast, but not to receive)
  • A system of symbols
  • Hand-written messages left in strategic, pre-agreed locations

It is important to work out a means of communication well in advance of any potential event. Allow members of the group to give their input and come up with the best ideas that will work. If you are planning a system of symbols to send messages, then determine which locations you will use, the method for leaving the message (such as Sharpie on the back of a street sign), and the set of symbols, each of which has a different meaning. Examples include symbols that:

  • Let others know whether you are safe or in danger
  • Let others know whether your primary meeting/bug-in location/bugout location is safe or unsafe
  • Let others know to use an alternate destination or an alternate route
  • Affirmative/Negative
  • Let others know that the bug-out plan should be initiated

Just be sure that if you pick symbols or code words they are easily remembered by everyone in the group. It is also wise to have a family member or close friend that lives in another area as a contact for the entire group. Should a disaster arise that doesn’t affect your contact, everyone can connect with that person.

Whenever someone in the group gets in touch with that contact, he or she can then relay messages to everyone else in the group. This assumes the lines of communication (in terms of phones and cell phones) are up and running. However, this is helpful when some family members have been separated from others. Younger children might not know the contact numbers, but this can be written or sewn into their jacket or backpack.

Bug-out Bags for Everyone!

Make sure you have a bug-out bag (BOB) and a get-home bag (GHB) for every member of your family. Even ensuring your family members each have some everyday carry (EDC) items that will help them get from wherever they are when disaster strikes to your meeting place will make a huge difference. You can check out these articles to find out what to include in the various survival bags:

  • BOB
  • GHB
  • EDC

Make Everyone Responsible

It is important to ensure that every person, right down to the youngest child, has specific responsibilities during any emergency event, whether it is short-term or long-term. An older sibling might have the responsibility of ensuring younger siblings get to the meeting location. A younger child might have the responsibility of gathering the flashlights. Whether you are going to bug in or bug out, there will be a number of jobs to get done, such as:

  • Ensuring all doors are locked
  • Loading the family vehicles
  • Taking inventory of what you have
  • Maintaining equipment
  • Securing the perimeter
  • Foraging/food preparation
  • Taking care of pets, especially when they are scared (a great responsibility for kids)

What tasks you assign will depend on the situation at hand, how long the situation goes on, and the number and ages of people in your family. However, handing out responsibilities to everyone ensures that things get done, everyone is pulling their weight, and everyone feels like they are contributing.

Practice, Practice, Practice

When you have your plan outlined in detail, you aren’t done, not by a long shot. You absolutely must run drills and practice all aspects of your plan as often as possible. Just think of the military. They run drills all the time so that when it comes time to do it for real, they have it down to a science. Fire drills at a public school are another great example. They run through these drills so that when the time comes that there is a real fire, everyone knows what to do and it goes smoothly.

You do not want to get to a point where you are scattered, disaster strikes, and it takes one of your family members too long to make it to the meeting place. You do not want to have to bugout and realize your primary route and secondary routes have been compromised. You don’t want to make one of your walking routes to your BOL to be along the train tracks only to find that there is a train bridge you simply can’t get your small children across. You absolutely must run drills of every aspect of your survival plan. This will not only ensure that everyone becomes familiar with the plan; it will also let you know where the bugs are so you can alter the plan accordingly.

Remember that your chances for survival in any number of emergency situations is highly dependent on how prepared you are. As long as you have a solid family survival plan and practice it regularly, you will have the best possible chance of survival no matter what disaster you are facing.

What to Have in Your EveryDay Carry (EDC) Kit

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by Megan

If you are new to prepping and interested in it but not sure that it’s for you, a great place to start out is with what to have in your EveryDay Carry (EDC) kit. Your EDC kit is made up of items that you commit to carrying with you every day, at all times. The only time you might not have these items on your person might be at home in bed.

The main purpose for having an EDC kit is so that if you are trapped and unable to get to any other form of help, you will have some basic tools and resources on your person. In the event you find yourself trapped beneath the rubble of a building after an explosion, trapped in a conference room with a hostile or aggressive person, trapped in a car because of a jammed seat belt, or forced to flee to the woods, you will have at least some tools on hand that could help you survive.

Some people mingle their EDC items with their Get Home Bag (GHB), a bag with supplies to get you home in a crisis and meant to be accessible to you at all times. You will also want to put together a bug out bag (BOB) for your home and car as well as an I’m never coming home” (INCH) or „Get Out of Dodge” (GOOD) bag. All of these bags together with your stockpile at home and at your bug out location (BOL) will greatly increase your chances of survival when things go wrong.

For this article, we’re going to focus on those things you can keep on your person that could be the difference between life and death. The items that could be crucial to your survival if you are trapped without any other resources. Imagine that you were one of those people working in or near the twin towers on 911 when the planes hit.

Now that we know how important your EDC kit can be, let’s talk about the kinds of things that need to be in it and how you’re going to fit all these items on your person without looking like the terminator as you come into work every day.

We’ve said that your EDC kit is made up of items you carry with you at all times so this means they need to be stored on your person. Every morning when you wake up, you will make sure you have these items with you. You’re going to store them in your pants pockets, shirt pockets, a lanyard around your neck, your key ring, etc.

For women, your purse is considered an extension of your person since there are very few times that you don’t have it in the room with you. For men, your wallet can also be a place to store items.To put together your EDC kit, think about both the little inconveniences and minor emergencies that can come up at any time.

It could be as simple as being able to open that impossible plastic packaging or put that tiny screw back in someone’s glasses. You will need to cut things, tie things, perhaps do a quick repair on a regular basis. But your EDC will also contain items that come in handy for more serious emergencies too like explosions, fires, natural disasters, and yes a SHTF or other event that warrants martial law.

Take an objective look at your workplace and any other location where you spend time for any potential crises that might be specific to those locations. The items that make up your EDC kit should reflect your typical situation. If you or a family member have any chronic medical issues such as diabetes, high blood pressure, or acute allergic reactions, you will want to include the necessary medications in your EDC.

Urban EDC

If you are in an urban situation, think about the types of obstacles you might come up against. Looting, rioting, and dangerous debris on the ground will be more prevalent in urban areas so items for self-defense and first aid care will be more critical. There will be more people within close range, so creating a smokeless fire that won’t draw attention to your location is important. Think about the scene during and immediately following the Boston bombing.

In an urban area, you may also more frequently come in contact with people who are panicking and behaving irrationally. Loose dogs who are scared by the noise and chaos maybe be a challenge so you may want to carry pepper spray or a small baton. Proper waste disposal, good hygiene, and protection from communicable diseases is more of an issue in crowded areas. Remember what followed Hurricane Katrina?

Rural/Remote EDC

For rural or very remote areas, you may want to focus your EDC so that you have more of the items you need to live off the land. Protection from wild animals will be a bigger issue in a rural area and being able to identify edible plants would come in handy.

In addition to finding clean water, you will need to be able to cut firewood, start a fire, trap and hunt small animals for food, navigate wooded terrain, cook outdoors, and erect a temporary shelter as protection from the weather.

Carry on Your Phone

If you’re like most people, you are already in the habit of carrying your cell phone with you everywhere. You can begin your EDC kit by simply expanding what you have available there. Some times knowing how to react in an emergency can make a huge difference in your chance of survival.

There’s no way that you can learn every technique and procedure in detail, memorize it, and be confident you can recall it when needed. But there are tons of survival apps, that have detailed information about all kinds of topics, which could be very useful if you are stranded in an expected emergency situation.

Below are just a few apps to consider adding to your cell phone or smart phone:

SAS Survival Guide app

This handy app provides information on everything from making fires, to how to survive in even the worst weather conditions. The app even includes a sun compass and an encoder that changes text to morse code. No internet connection is required so all you have to do is make sure you keep your phone charged and you will have an invaluable resource at your fingertips. Android Users Download SAS Here or  iPhone Users Download SAS here

First Aid App from American Red Cross

The best way to be prepared is to become certified in first aid/CPR skills but if you haven’t had time to do that or just in case your skills are a little rusty, this handy app can truly be a lifesaver. Download this app to your phone and you will have detailed instructions and video demonstrations of how to do first aid for many different types of situations including heart attacks, drowning, choking, etc.iPhone users can your copy here or Android users can download it here.

Weatherbug app or Emergency Radio Apps

To keep up to date with important weather related information try the Weatherbug app  for iPhone or  Android and to stay abreast of what’s going on in your area, do your research and select one of the many emergency radio/scanner apps.

MotionX GPS App

One of the best outdoor apps is MotionX GPS which features worldwide topographical maps that you can download MotionX has a feature that lets you track your journey so you can re-route if you get lost and get back to your previous location. It’s available for both iPhone and Android users.

The apps above are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to information you can include on your phone as part of your EDC kit. There are apps available for just about any kind of information or instructions you could need in an emergency. Just make sure you have enough storage on your phone and that you include a way to charge your phone in your EDC kit.

Carry on Your Keychain

Next look for mini items that you can simply add to your keychain. This could be things like a small screwdriver and pliers or multi-tool if you prefer, a mini-flashlight, a button compass, keychain money holder, cutting tools, a bottle opener and can opener, etc. For those who feel they may get caught in the wilderness, a waterproof cyclinder with some tinder inside and a firesteel will come in handy. Some people feel that having a small thumb drive or flash drive on their keychain where they can keep copies of important documents, inventory lists of household valuables, contact information, and field manuals or survival e-books, is also worthwhile.

Once you have your cell phone and keychain organized, you can begin to think about other items you need to carry. Always factor weight and bulkiness as it’s important for your EDC items to be something you can carry with you everyday. Your EDC items will do no good if you get in the habit of leaving them home because they are too burdensome.

Wearable Items

The next thing to consider are the discreet items that you can wear everyday without calling too much attention to yourself. Paracord always comes in handy in survival situations so replace your shoelaces with some or get a paracord bracelet to wear on your wrist or around your ankle covered by your pantleg. Wear a watch, get one with multi-functions if you can.

Pin some safety pins into the sleeves or collars of your shirts so you always have one on hand when needed. A long lanyard can hold a whistle and even a waterproof pouch with spare ID, cash, “rite in rain” notebook, and space pen, etc. discreetly beneath your shirt or blouse. Wear several bobby pins in your hair or slide them into your wallet if you’re a guy.

Carry in Your Pockets, Belt, or Purse

Think about your everyday clothing and the total number of pockets you will have most days. If you carry a purse or wallet with you, some items can be carried there. Factor frequency of use, weight, shape into your decision about where to carry each item. Below are some additional EDC items you’ll want to consider carrying in your pockets or on your belt:

  • Your gun, spare ammo, and EDC knife
  • Non-lethal weapons such as pepper spray or mace.
  • A Bic lighter, waterproof matches, and some kind of tinder
  • Water purification tables
  • A Bandana
  • Mini fishing kit (includes hooks, fishing line, etc and pack into an altoid tin)
  • One pair of medical gloves and an N95 mask
  • A small but high quality flashlight and extra batteries
  • Portable water filter like the LifeStraw
  • Extra batteries and a small phone charger
  • Duct tape or electrical tape wrapped on a piece of cardboard.
  • An Altoid tin with a fishing kit and/or mini first aid kit inside.
  • Zip lock bag with jerky or pemmican, nuts, energy bars, etc.
  • Personal hygiene items such as chapstick, nail clippers, tweezers, and dental floss.

The EDC Bag (If You Must)

For those who want to have more on them they can be carried or worn, or for those whose everyday clothing doesn’t include a lot of pockets, you can consider carrying an EDC bag. The key thing to remember is that it should be on your person at all times. So if you choose to use a bag, use one that you can carry or wear every day.

An EDC bag should definitely be discreet, and not draw too much attention, especially if you will be carrying it to an office or school environment. Use an EDC bag whenPack what you feel you can’t do without in an emergency but remember not to get the bag too heavy. Ideally your EDC will be something you can wear on your back, cross body, or aroud your waist so that your hands are free to defend yourself and you can move quickly.

The discreet EDC bag can be one of these small messenger bags, a laptop bag, camera bag, or even a fanny pack. If you work in a more rugged environment such as in construction or maybe as a first responder, you may be able to get away with something like the Maxpedition Proteus Versipack.

The most important things about your EDC kit items are that they are comfortable enough for you to get in the habit of carrying every day and that you know how to use them for whatever situation might be likely to occur in your area. Customize your EDC to meet your specific needs and keep it with you at all times and it will serve you well in any crisis situation.

What else do you include in your EDC kit?

Preppers: How To Keep Your Food Rations Safe

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When you’re prepping for anything to happen, then you need to make sure that you’ve thought of everything in the process. This is essential to ensure that everyone staying within the area, or the bunker is going to be safe for whatever comes your way. One of the biggest considerations is having enough food to provide for everyone that is staying with you. This can be done through the use of compact dehumidifiers that can provide you with a way to remove any moisture from the area that might spoil the food that you’ve saved.

Additional Information About Caring For Your Food

When it comes to keeping the area safe, you’re definitely worried about the items that you have down there, but what happens when the food is ruined due to the moisture that is in the area? Through the use of a basement dehumidifier, you’re able to wick away any moisture, and ensure that everything in the area, no matter how dark or damp stays fresh, dry and in the best condition possible. This only comes from having the right machines for the job and a compact dehumidifier is able to do this for you, and so much more. Keep it all dry, and be sure to have the space ready for whenever you may need it.

Enjoy all that comes from choosing a compact dehumidifier to add to your space, and make the most of the extras that you’re being provided with. You should never have to worry about anything in the process, since they have you covered from start to finish. You can have your food and eat it too, without having anything go bad or become ruined due to the moisture that is built up in the area. You can be the most prepared through the use of the machine.

Keeping All Items Safe When Not in Use

Keep in mind that all of the items within this area should be kept safe at all times, and not just when they’re in use. This is why a basement dehumidifier or even a compact dehumidifier would be able to do the job when the time comes. You should never have to worry about not being able to have the food, or other items that you need to stay safe since you were able to easily keep them dry and in great condition in the process. This can provide you with the essential dryness that you need, when you need it. Basement dehumidifiers provide this for you and so much more.

Never have to worry about your items becoming ruined in the process of creating your shelter for anything that may happen. Through the use of the compact dehumidifiers that you can purchase, you can make sure that everything stays dry and is able to be used, if you ever need to use it. Choosing to go with a basement dehumidifier is always a good consideration to make, and can provide you with a way to stay dry when the time comes. Enjoy the benefits when you see them at work when the time comes.

Good Foods to Stock Pile

One of the most important items that a person forgets to stockpile is water. In a time of emergency water is the first item to vanish in grocery stores and cause people to fight over. At times, water seems abundant but when needed filtered clean water can be a hard item to find. Some water companies say water has an indefinite shelf life. Because water is the universal solvent and can break down storage containers and plastic bottle, we recommend replacing water every 6 to 12 months. You don’t want your stored water to contain Bisphenol A (BPA) from plastic bottles.

Freeze-dried food, vegetable and fruits are always good to stock pile. The freeze-dried food company Mountain House guarantees their products for 12+ years in pouches and 25+ years for canned food products. But as you know with most freeze-dried foods water is need to rehydrate their products. Canned fruits, veggies and meats are also a good item to stockpile. For example a can of tuna or deviled ham can last about 3 years before going bad.

There are many food luxury times to stockpile as well. Coffee, nuts, Peanut Butter, Sugar, Jams, Popcorn and Hard Liquor that can all be stored and last for sometime. All of these items are not needed but will make surviving a little easier. Even toilet paper and soap can be stored to make life easier. Most of these items will also work well for trading and bartering purposes.

But none of these times will last if not stored properly. Be sure to keep all items in a cool dark space, little to no direct sunlight ,dry climate and little to no moisture in the air. Basements, closets, garages tend to be a good place to store items and stock pile foods. A stock pile is only food if the times stay fresh and safe from mold and other cancerous items.

Prepping and Storing Your Own Food

One way to make sure you have your own food storage is by prepping and storing your own food. Investing in a vacuum sealer and food canner can be a good idea. FoodSaver Vacuum Sealers can run you anywhere between $50 up to $500 depending on the model and how often and how big of an item you will need to vacuum seal. You can package your own meats and can your own fruits right at home. If you are looking to do a lot of vacuum sealing you may want to invest in oxygen absorbers to help keep food fresher longer. Oxygen absorbers are those little packages you find in jerky games to keep the jerky dry.

Prepping your own food gives you the peace of mind knowing that where you food came from and that it has been properly prepped and packaged. Be sure to test your vacuuming skills before packaging a large amount of food. No one is perfect on their first try.

With all these helpful tips about keeping your food rations safe you can rest assured that you will be able to survive the epidemic. Your food stockpile and rations will be the envy of the neighborhood and your family will be proud.

20 Reasons Preppers Are Happier Than the Rest of the World

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by Megan

Although preppers have the reputation of being crazy and paranoid, the truth is that most of usa re truly happier than those who don’t prep. We have a myriad of different opinions about exactly what kind of event is looming and what its impact will be, but they all agree on one thing, our current way of life is in jeopardy. So if preppers feel that impending doom is looming just over the horizon, how are they happier than other people who are in denial or blissfully unaware of what’s coming?

  1. Basic Physiological and Security Needs Are Met

One huge reason that preppers are happier is because the very act of prepping is completely oriented toward meeting the bottom two levels of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs which are the Physiological Needs and Safety Needs. The first things most preppers naturally start stockpiling and planning for include food, water, shelter, and medicine all of which serve to meet the basic physiological needs. And a survival plan for many preppers also focuses in great detail on how to protect themselves from the elements such as extreme temperatures and natural disasters which addresses the need for warmth, shelter, etc.

Most preppers also plan for ways to protect themselves and their families from other dangers too, including home invasions, criminal acts (rape, assault, theft, etc.) and other dangerous situations. They plan ways to defend themselves and their families and homes. Ensuring the security and safety of self and family is a huge reason people prep. They have an innate desire to know that no matter what comes at them, they will be relatively safe and secure.

Fear of change can be also paralyzing for many people. One way to address the fear of change that often comes with catastrophic events is to face the possibility of what is coming and create a survival war plan to handle the worst case scenario. Preppers are happier because they know that they have a plan of action for the worst case scenario. They have confronted their fears of what could happen and have prepared to overcome it. Freedom from fear is part of the basic human safety needs that must be met.

Maslow believed that unmet needs in the bottom levels of the pyramid actually interfere with motivation levels to meet needs at the upper levels of the pyramid. Although many preppers may not consciously realize it, having plans and taking action to ensure that one’s basic physiological and safety needs are met, naturally makes people happier.

  1. Pride

Preppers are happier because they take pride in the fact that they have a plan in place that will enable them to keep themselves and their family safe and cared for. One of our greatest needs as humans is to survive, to live. Preppers take pride in seeing their food and water stockpile accumulate, they take pride in a well planted garden or a properly working solar power system because they know these are things they helped to create that will help protect their family when times get tough.

  1. Saves Money

Prepping when done in an organized way can actually help to save money. Many preppers make use of bulk purchases and couponing to reduce grocery bills. Many preppers recycle used items or buy secondhand items rather than buying new. The use of natural resources such as hunting, fishing, trapping as well as alternative energy such as a solar power generator can also reduce expenses. The money saved can then be used for other purposes such as paying off debt, securing additional supplies or equipment, planting or expanding gardening or livestock capacity, traveling, or even luxury items and activities.

  1. Prevents Waste/Helps Planet

Prepping prevents waste because you are purposefully finding alternative uses for things that you normally would have thrown away or things that other people were going to throw away. By reusing and recycling items you are reducing the amount of garbage that goes into landfills. Preppers are happy because they know they are reducing waste and helping the planet at the same time.

  1. Keeps you Fit/Stress Relief

Everyone knows that exercise and staying active are great ways to relieve stress, anxiety, and feelings of depression. In today’s society, hardcore prepping can be a great way to reduce stress. If you are spending your spare time hiking, camping, chopping wood, planting a hidden survival garden, etc. then you not only improve your fitness level but you are also experience the regular release of endorphins that positively affect your mood and mental health.

  1. Worry Less About Disasters/Know They Are Ready

Preppers are happier because they know that they are making plans that will ensure that they are prepared to survive any type of disaster or event that life may throw at them. Because they know they are prepared and ready to face the dangers in this world, they are able to worry less about those types of events. Preppers spend less time worrying about what might happen because they have confidence in their ability to overcome whatever comes. This means they are happier because they worry less and spend more time enjoying life.

  1. Life’s Little Inconveniences Are Nothing to Fret About

Everyone experiences the little inconveniences of life, including preppers. When your average person is caught unprepared by something simple like impossible to open plastic packaging, a flat tire on an isolated highway, or more serious like a prolonged power outage or flooded basement, it can cause stress, fear, and anxiety. When a prepper comes against one of these little inconveniences, stress, fear, and anxiety are pretty much taken out of the equation. A prepper knows they can handle these types of delays because they carry their EDC kit, have a car BOB, and have prepared to manage without power.

  1. Cushioned from Unexpected Loss of Income

Preppers are happier than those who don’t prep because they don’t have to worry about short-term things such as a job loss or lay off, taking a cut in pay, or experiencing an illness that affects their regular income. Preppers aren’t going to run out of food or toilet paper if they can’t work for three weeks because they have a stockpile of the basic necessities on hand. Many preppers have also created a financial cushion for themselves or have planned for alternative ways to bring in money if a situation calls for it.

  1. More Independent

The very act of prepping, regardless of the amount or level, means that preppers are less dependent on systems outside of themselves to meet their basic physiological and safety needs. Events that would negatively impact other families, such as a shortages or shut downs of grocery stores, gas stations, transportation systems, or other community services, don’t affect preppers.

  1. Can Help Others

Preppers are happier than those who don’t prep because they know that they are in the position to help friends and family if needed. Because preppers often stockpile supplies like food, water, toilet paper, and other necessities, they are in a position to help someone else who is experience a shortage of income by providing them with some basic supplies to get them through the crisis. Some preppers are also preparing to help friends and family in the case of a SHTF event.

  1. Retirement Planning Is Easier

Part of prepping plans for many people include a gradual path toward becoming as self-sufficient as possible. This means that they are taking action toward becoming debt free, reducing unnecessary expenses, and putting systems in place (solar power, rainwater catchment, garden, etc.) that even further reduces their need to spend cash regularly. Retirement planning is much more involved when your monthly household expenses are $2,500 and you are thousands of dollars in debt than if your monthly expenses are under $500 monthly and you are debt free.

  1. Confidence

Preppers are happier because they are more confident. They are confident they can provide for their family when times get tough. They are confident that their home and property is secure and can be defended against possible intruders. They are confident that a natural disaster such as a tornado, flood, or wildfire is something they can survive and bounce back from.

  1. Families are Closer

For many preppers, the act of prepping becomes a family project. Families that actively prepare for emergencies and other catastrophic events spend more quality time together. They are more aware of the individual skills, interests, and personal needs of family members. Prepper families develop a team attitude and are invested in actively planning for the protection and survival of the family as a unit. These are activities that just naturally develop closer relationships within the family.

  1. Building a legacy

Many people who prep are doing so from a motivation to build a legacy. The preservation of the family is a priority. Prepping creates a safe, secure environment that will protect the current family and future generations. Prepping involves multiple generations, every member of the group is expected to contribute in some way. This means that much of the knowledge and skills of older generations are being purposefully passed on to younger members of the group.

  1. Control over life

Prepping creates a greater sense of control of life in general. When you prepare for potential emergencies, you actively choose to take a defensive position and mindset rather than a victim mindset. Instead of just waiting around to see what happens and worrying about what could happen, preppers actively prepare to overcome the obstacles life presents. This provides a greater sense of control over life in general.

  1. Leadership

Prepping for a natural disaster or SHTF event develops leadership in even the youngest of preppers. Knowing that you have information and skills that others may not have means that most preppers are preparing to lead others whether it be just their own family members and friends or an entire community. Leadership skills gained through prepping can often spill over into school and career areas which can lead to additional rewards.

  1. Responsibility

There is a huge sense of responsibility that comes along with prepping. Knowing that you and your family and possibly friends will depend on what you have prepared to survive is not something to be taken lightly. Food stockpiles must be stored and rotated properly to prevent contamination, equipment must be accessible and operational at a moment’s notice.

  1. Learn New Things/New Interests

Preppers are happier because they are constantly learning and practicing new skills that will help them to be ready for whatever events may be coming. Preppers actively take the time to seek out knowledge about new topics, they must be willing to try new things and fail, and to keep trying until they master the survival skills needed to survive.

  1. Less Bored /Stay Busy

Preppers are happier because there are so many aspects to prepping and planning that one can never really be bored. There is always something else that can be done if you are bored. Supplies need to be inventoried and rotated, and there is always a practice drill to be executed. Preppers stay busy and they stay active, and this means they experience less boredom and one could even say that staying active helps stave off the normal effects of aging (stiff joints, memory loss, etc.) many people experience.

  1. Appreciate The Little Things

Preppers learn to pay attention to everything going on around them because they know that in a post-SHTF event, advance warning can mean the difference between life and death. This sense of being “alert” or “observant” means they notice and appreciate things that most people simply take for granted. Preppers are happier because they can appreciate the little things, from the sounds of the animals in the forest telling them things are normal for now, to a much needed rainfall, or the first shoots of vegetable plants spring up from a well planted garden.

These are just twenty of the reasons that preppers tend to be happier than the rest of the world. Every prepper is different and each person’s definition of happiness varies. If you’re hoping to improve your level of happiness, I would seriously recommend starting off by meeting your physiological and safety needs as outlined in the first item on this list. The longer you prep and the more experienced you get, the more of these benefits you will experience.

If you’re already prepping, tell us why it makes you happier in the comments below.

Strategies for Dealing with Those Who Aren’t Prepared

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by Megan

One of the major issues that preppers talk about a lot is the best strategies to deal with all those people who are not prepared for a SHTF event. If you try too hard to get others to wake up to the importance of prepping, you can be labeled as obsessive or crazy. And yet, most preppers know that one of the biggest dangers they will face during and after a post-economic collapse or other grid down situation is people who are hungry and desperate to feed their families because they didn’t prepare.

Pre-Collapse Strategy

If you’re truly worried about other family members, friends, neighbors, and co-workers who you feel won’t be prepared when the time comes, you can try to impress upon them how important it is to start preparing. This is something that has to be done carefully and gradually so that you aren’t seen as “that crazy prepper”. If they think you’re obsessed and paranoid about prepping, they will simply tune you out and your pleas will fall on deaf ears.

One thing you can do that is somewhat subtle is to get family members, friends, or even neighbors to watch some of the best survival movies and TV shows which may gradually introduce the idea of being prepared for emergencies. Don’t force your family and friends to watch a survival movie every week, that would be way too obvious. But introducing a TV series like Revolution or a movie like San Andreas is good entertainment and gives you a chance to subtly comment how quickly things can go wrong, how the need for emergency communications can come up suddenly, etc.

The other thing you can do is to have your own preps ready and use them whenever the opportunity arises. When your cousin can’t get that ridiculous crazy plastic packaging open on his newest toy or your friend cuts his hand using the saw at work, you can come to the rescue with your EDC knife or mini first aid kit. These kinds of everyday rescues can give you the chance to demonstrate in real time how great it is to be prepared for the unexpected things that come up all the time.

The third thing you can do right now, pre-collapse with people who aren’t prepared, is to help spread the word about existing emergency planning for your community. Find out where the tornado shelters are or which buildings in and around town are earthquake resistant and make sure people know about them. Tell people when there is a first aid, CPR, or other course being held in the area. Share information when it comes out about evacuation plans for your local school district to make sure people are aware of it. You can’t control whether or not people participate but you can make them aware.

As far as sharing information about what you are doing to prep, it’s not a good idea to share those details with other people unless they are people you know you can trust. Just because your neighbor chats with you over the hedge now and then, doesn’t mean that he is trustworthy enough when SHTF not to come and take your preps to feed his own family. Be cautious even with co-workers and friends.

During and Post SHTF Strategies

We all have neighbors, co-workers, friends, and even relatives who we know will not be prepared when the time comes. And there are bound to be many strangers who aren’t prepared either. In a post collapse situation, all of these people will run out of food quickly and be looking for ways to feed themselves and their families.

As a parent, wouldn’t you do whatever you had to do to keep your children fed? These desperate people will act in ways they wouldn’t normally act because they and their children will be hungry and thirsty, maybe even starving.

The “best strategies” to deal with these people who are unprepared, some preppers refer to them as “zombies”, is one issue that divides many preppers. There are four main categories when it comes to strategies for dealing with people who are unprepared before, during, and post-collapse.

Option #1 Defend It with Guns

Just shoot them. A major portion of preppers are of the opinion that dealing with people who are unprepared to feed themselves and their families is really not their problem. Their strategy consists mainly of using force when necessary to keep people away and to defend their stockpile. Preppers who are convinced this is the best strategy for them are gearing up by stockpiling guns, ammunition, and other security measures.

The main downside with this strategy is that the sheer numbers of people who could descend on your property all within hours or days of each other could be massive. In rural areas, you may be better off for a little while but anyone close to the major cities could simply be unable to defend against crowds of hungry desperate people. If you are going to rely on this strategy, make sure you have a method for making more ammunition post-SHTF.

Option #2 Share with Others

Feed anyone who shows up and then send them on their way. There are many preppers who believe the best strategy for them will be to just feed people who show up and send them on their way. Many preppers in this group may be unrealistic about how long a post-SHTF situation can last and how many people will show up asking for food and supplies. They also may not be prepared for the fact that like a stray cat, once you feed these desperate people, they will just keep coming back again and again.

Stockpile extra supplies so you can feed people and then send them away with a care package to get them through a little while. There are a lot of preppers who realize that there will be people who haven’t prepared adequately and so they are stockpiling extra food and supplies so that they will “have extra” to feed people who come to them desperate and hungry.

This strategy might work in the short term if you have a lot of extra supplies stored up. However, there will never really be “extra” because anything you give away could end up being the difference between life and death for your own family later when your own stockpile runs out. Plus, as word gets out that you are feeding people and giving away supplies, you will have more people at your door than you can help. And some of those people who hear about you might just decide to take what you have.

Grow extra food in a section of your garden and anyone who comes begging can help themselves from that area. This is a combination strategy that many preppers feel might work better than just giving people food. Sure it’s more work to plant it initially, but if you let hungry people pick their own food, it’s not more work for you.

This strategy could work because a lot of people are decent human beings and once they are able to feed their children, they may move on. But again, those not so decent human beings might decide that your entire garden is something they have a right to for their family. And there’s also a possibility that a horde of people could come through within several days and they will move on to your section of the garden when the “shared” section is picked bare.

Accept people into your group. There is an entire subgroup of preppers who believe strongly that the more numbers of people they have in their group, the stronger they are and the more the workload can be divided. This group of preppers are willing, and in some cases planning, to accept unprepared people into their own group and make them allies so they contribute to the group going forward. In addition to stockpiling extra supplies, they are even including guest sleeping space, etc. in their preparations.

The problem with this strategy is that group survival is not just about numbers. It’s about the skills that you have within the group and it’s about leadership and trust. People have diverse personalities and values. The more people you have in your group the stronger leadership you will need. Larger groups are good because the workload is shared and you have help when it comes to defending your property, but larger groups also use up limited resources like medicines, much more quickly.

The real challenge with this strategy though is you just never know what people will do when times are tough, especially people you don’t know well. You could end up assimilating someone or several people into your group that will run off when you need them the most or worse turn on you and take over and put you and your family out with nothing.

Option #3 Hide It

Use “decoy” supplies in the kitchen cupboards or out in the open. Keep the rest of your main stockpile well hidden in separate places all over your property and BOL. Many preppers plan for stockpiling include this strategy. They will hide most of their food in well-hidden places, under beds, behind fake walls, under furniture, etc. If someone raids their home and empties the cupboards and pantry, they may not find all of the hidden supplies. But if intruders are very persistent and thorough in searching, or are a prepper themselves who knows where to look for hidden supplies, it could mean trouble.

Keep garden plants hidden from view behind a fence, behind tall shrubs, in among flower gardens to make them less noticeable. If people passing by cannot immediately see that a food garden, they may just keep going to the next house. This is a good strategy that will probably keep some people from ravaging your food garden. It won’t really stop anyone who is persistent and comes up onto your property to “check things out”.

Plant some wild edible plants along the edge of the road and hope that people will eat those instead of approaching you for your stuff. This is another decent strategy that could work to keep some people away. It won’t work for those who don’t recognize wild plants as edible or for those people who are very persistent and will take the time to come up and inspect your property for what else you may have.

Plant edible landscaping that isn’t recognizable as food. Make your landscaping edible so it will appear like just your way of decorating your property. Some people will walk right by edible plants and not even realize they are edible. This is actually a good strategy because in the event that someone does raid all of your regular canned food and supplies, you will still have your edible landscaping to get by. Only really hard core preppers and survivalists will know to even look for edible landscaping.

Creating a food forest is a complex endeavor to get started the first year, but since it just looks like wild overgrowth, it pays off because very few people will even look there for food. A food forest can be in your backyard or at the edge of your yard. It looks wild and messy and overgrown when done correctly. It doesn’t need much maintenance at all so it’s rare that people will see you tending to it and know it’s there pre-SHTF.

And if you want to, you can even plant your annual vegetables like peppers, tomatoes, and other stuff in amongst the food forest where it is barely recognizable. Sure if someone decides to cut through the forest behind your house they may find your food, but most people will stick to the roads as much as possible. And as long as you have guns, you can defend against a few people here and there who might stumble upon it.

Option #4 Stay Mobile

There are some preppers who believe they can just stay mobile and out of sight or reach from the crowds of hungry people. These are your hard core preppers. Many of them are really experienced in survivalist skills and feel confident that they can travel light and live off the land no matter where they are. This is a good strategy but only for a very limited number of people. Not everyone has the skills, stamina, and mental fortitude that it would take to live off the land, constantly moving around, for weeks, months, or years at a time.

For those relying on this strategy, you must be able to live with very little resources, carrying only what you absolutely cannot replicate in the wilderness. You must be in top physical condition, know how to treat yourself for various illnesses and traumas that you could face and be able to survive off wild edibles and the ever dwindling supply of wild animals. It’s definitely not a strategy for those who have never done it and have just read about it or watched instructional videos on YouTube.

It would seem that there’s really no guaranteed strategy for dealing with those people that are unprepared and who may arrive on your doorstep hungry and desperate. Perhaps the best solution for you will be a combination of several of the above strategies. Consider your individual needs, your own levels of fitness and security, and create a strategy that you feel will work the best.

Do you have a different strategy for dealing with unprepared people? Tell us about it in the comments below.

Planning a Survival Food Stockpile

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The issue of stocking up enough food for societal collapse, or even just extended emergency situations, is one of the first things people think about when they are prepping. This is a good thing, because aside from having safe shelter and water, food is the most important thing to have stored away. This is particularly the case since our grocery stores are stocked with a mere three days’ worth of food.  Even an emergency event that goes on for just one week will result in a lot of very hungry people.  And if people know about the emergency event in advance, you will likely get to the store to find empty shelves staring back at you.  It’s best to have food stocked up ahead of time.

When it comes to stockpiling food, governments recommend keeping three days’ worth of food stocked up. I believe this is woefully inadequate and that the absolute bare minimum should be a month’s worth of food. Then you can work your way up to three months’, six months’, and then a year’s worth of food. There are also a lot of things to think about when stockpiling food. What kinds of foods should be stored? Are some better than others? How much food do you need? How do you store it so that it will keep until you need it? These questions might be roaming around in your head so let’s explore the answers.

Caloric Considerations

Before we get into what food you should store and how you need to store it, let’s take caloric requirements into consideration. In particular, you need to consider how many people you are stocking food for and the calorie requirements of each of those people. There are different caloric requirements for men, women, and children and you have to plan accordingly. The caloric requirements for each depend on age, weight and height, and level of physical activity, but range as follows:

  • Men (including teenagers): 2,700-3,800
  • Women (including teenagers): 1,900-2,600
  • Children 13 and under: 1,100-1700

Remember that the lower number is for light activity throughout the day and the higher number is for heavy activity. You will need to go to the higher end of the range for people who are younger, heavier, and taller and when you are in a survival situation, everyone will be exerting themselves a great deal each day.

With this in mind, be sure you have high-calorie foods in your food stores. These include protein bars, canned meats and cheeses, peanut butter, rice, and oatmeal. We’ll get into specific foods to store below, but keep the caloric requirements in mind when prepping. Check the calories in each type of food you are prepping and be sure you calculate how much you will need for each person for a month. For instance, when stocking rice, there are 130 calories per 100 grams (about a quarter of a pound) of cooked rice.  If you have a 50-pound (22,700 gram) bag of rice you have nearly 30,000 calories of food in that one bag and if a serving size is 100 grams, you could feed one man for 10 days.  Of course, this is the case if the rice was all he ate, which it won’t be, but it gives you an idea of how you need to think about this.

Foods to Store

When choosing the food you store away there are a few things to keep in mind. These include:

  • Consider short-term and long-term food storage
  • Store food your family likes and eats
  • Store foods that have a long shelf-life

For short-term emergencies, such as when there is a winter storm and the power goes out for a few days, whatever you and your family eats on a regular basis will do. You should have a week or two of your family’s favorite and regular foods stocked up, including cereal, bread, juice, and anything else your family generally eats.

Beyond the short-term food storage, it is wise to start stocking foods that will keep for a long period of time provided they are properly stored (we’ll talk about food storage next!). Here is a list of foods that are good for storage, organized in categories and including an approximate shelf-life:

  • Grains
    • Rice
    • Oatmeal
    • Hard grains: buckwheat, wheat, millet, dried corn (10-12 years)
    • Soft grains: oat groats, barley, rye, quinoa (8-10 years)
    • Flour (5-8 years)
    • Pasta (5-8 years)
  • Dried beans (8-10 years)
    • Pinto
    • Navy
    • Chickpeas (garbanzo)
    • Lentils
    • Kidney
    • Black
    • Mung
    • Lima
    • Blackeye peas
  • Canned food (2-5 years)
    • Beans
    • Vegetables
    • Sauces
    • Fruit
    • Soup
    • Meat
    • Cheese
  • Dehydrated fruits and vegetables (1-2 years depending on storage temperature)
  • Powdered milk (2-5 years)
  • Peanut butter (2-5 years)
  • Unpasteurized (raw) honey (unlimited shelf-life)
  • Seasoning
    • Salt (unlimited shelf-life)
    • Herbs and spices (2-5 years)
  • Oil – the longest shelf-life is coconut oil at more than 2 years
  • Baking soda (unlimited shelf-life)
  • Apple cider vinegar (5-10 years)
  • Tea/coffee (2-5 years)
  • Sprouting seeds – includes mustard seeds, mung beans, and any other seeds you can think of and they will allow you to have fresh greens even in the midst of winter; make sure they are raw seeds; most will store for 5 years

Once you have these staples stocked up, you can start adding some foods that are more for pleasure than survival. These are items that you like to have on hand for comfort, such as chocolate, special food preferences, chips, nachos and salsa, and anything else that tickles your fancy. These foods are a great comfort when things look bad and they can also make great barter items if things go on long enough that you need to start trading with other people.

How to Store Food

You now know what to store and how much of it you need, but you need to store it properly or you might find yourself with food that has gone bad faster than you thought it would. Levels of temperature, humidity, oxygen, and light affect the shelf-life of food. The lower these factors are, the longer the shelf-life, temperature being the most critical, but all of them important.

With this in mind you should store all your food in a cool, dry, dark environment. If you have canned food, storing the cans on shelves in a pantry or cupboard or in shelves in your basement should suffice.  Dehydrated foods and dried goods, such as grains and beans, should be stored in a cool, dry environment in sealed containers with an oxygen absorber to minimize the amount of oxygen they are exposed to.  The sealed containers will also keep out insects that would otherwise infest and feed on your grains and beans.  Because bags of grains and beans can come with insect eggs already laid within them, it is wise to freeze these for at least two days prior to putting them into storage. This will kill off any eggs that might be in the bag and ensure an infestation doesn’t happen.

As for dehydrated foods, when they are stored in sealed mason jars, they will last for six months to a year, but if they are vacuum-sealed and stored in sealed containers with oxygen absorbers, their shelf-life will increase significantly.

Finally, when it comes to storing your stockpile of food, make sure you have a good food rotation system set up.  In first, out first is the rule of thumb.  Eat the oldest food and put newer food at the back of the lineup. Your pantry will always be stocked with fresh, healthy food and you will never go hungry.

Balancing Food Stores between Locations

Now I’m going to expand on food storage a little by discussing the issue of splitting those stores between your home and your bugout location.  If you are fortunate enough to have a separate, preferable more remote bugout location, then it is important that you keep it stocked with everything you need, just as you have your home.  While bugging in is ideal, you will be more likely to bug out if you have a bugout location set up, and if you do bug out, it won’t do you much good if you don’t have enough food there.

Despite the fact that you might have an easier time hunting, fishing, trapping, foraging, and growing your own food at your bugout location, you will still need a stockpile to get you going.  For this reason, you are wise to split your food supplies (and all other supplies) between your home and your bugout location. Yes, this does mean you will need to double your stores, or close to it, in the end, but this is worth the extra expense and effort.

Try to build your stores at home and your bugout location simultaneously.  If you can store equal amounts at each location, that is super, but a minimum of three months’ worth at your BOL is best.  There are two major considerations when storing food at your BOL:

  • You need to hide it well, in case looters or other unwanted people break in to your BOL. Make sure your stores are well hidden, preferably in a location other than your main BOL building, such as an outbuilding or a hidden cache that is buried underground, such as a root cellar.
  • You will need to rotate your stockpile of food at your BOL, as well as at home, which means that you will have to travel there frequently. If you can get there most, if not all, weekends, that is ideal.  Food will have to be transported there regularly and you will have to eat the food that is stored there as you bring in new food, just as you do at home.

Final Tips

Finally, I want to leave you with a few last tips.  These are based on mistakes that are often made and things you should make a special note of when stocking away food.

  • Make sure you have plenty of salt, a minimum of 10 pounds per person. It makes your food taste better and can be used to barter for other items if need be.
  • Eat what you store away, replenish, and rotate your stores so that you always have food moving in and out. It’s common for people to not eat their stores or eat it but not replenish it regularly, leaving them with an inadequate supply in an emergency.
  • It’s important to store a wide variety of food because you will get bored with your food, no matter how nutritious it is. You also need variety for the purpose of nutrition.
  • Learn to cook/prepare the food you have stored away in the conditions you would be in during an emergency. If you will be cooking on a camp stove or over a fire, then practice.
  • Make sure you have food that will make a hot meal because hot meals are comforting and no one wants to eat out of a can indefinitely.
  • Catch bulk and canned foods on sale when you can. This cuts down the cost of stocking up on food.
  • Separate your food stores into caches and hide them in different locations if possible. Even a false wall in your home or under dressers or other locations that are less likely to be seen/searched by looters is best. If it’s all sitting there in the open for anyone to see, you will lose it.
  • Most of all have fun preparing your food stores! This can be something you and your family can do together and it will help you all feel better about your situation, no matter what emergency event comes your way.

Why Your Next Survival Trip Should Be to the Flea Market

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by Megan

There are many reasons why your next survival trip should be to the local flea market, especially for an active prepper who is looking to build their stockpile. Flea markets can be a veritable treasure chest of needed supplies. If you know what to watch for and how to negotiate well, you can get the survival supplies you need at prices that are far less expensive than buying them new at the local retail box store.

What Can You Buy at Flea Markets?

Flea markets are a great place to look for clothing, shoes, and boots to keep in your GHB, your BOB, or even your INCH bags. In fact, with flea market prices, you can probably afford to buy a set of boots for each of your bags all at one time. Buying boots used also means they are already partially broken in for you! Make sure they are free of any holes, and when you get them home, invest in some water proof spray, swap out the laces for paracord, and wear them around home for a couple days before you pack them away.

Getting winter gear at the flea market is also a smart move, especially if you visit the flea market towards the end of the winter season. You may need to search a bit, but you can find gloves, hats, and even decent coats that you can buy cheap and add to your stockpile. You can actually find extra sets of clothes for just about any season, including rainy wet weather, at the flea market and save a ton of money compared to buying them new. Just make sure to buy fabrics that will breathe and work well in layers.

The flea market is also a super place to find other things you need for your stockpile, such as kitchen utensils and pots and pans. Look for items such as can openers, cast iron skillets or dutch ovens, as well as stainless steel pots and canteens. If you’re lucky you may run across a used grain or meat grinder, both of which will come in handy post-SHTF but are often too expensive to buy new. The flea market is also a great place to find quality thermoses, camp stoves, extra blankets, canning jars, propane canisters, and pressure canners.

The amount of gear you can find at a flea market makes the trip worthwhile for any prepper. You will find good quality tools and needed equipment like chainsaws, hatchets, and axes, as well as swiss army knives, flashlights, old tents, backpacks, radios, fishing equipment, hunting stuff, and gardening tools and supplies. Sewing materials which can be used not only to sew your own clothes but also to stitch up cuts, repair a tent, and make baskets are generally in abundance.

How to Get the Best Deals and Negotiate at Flea Markets

One of the best ways to make sure you get the best deals from flea markets is to visit them frequently and early. If it’s a weekend flea market, you want to go every weekend, or ideally each day they are open. It’s crucial that you are there as soon as possible after the gate opens for the day. The best time to get good deals is when vendors first arrive and are unloading their stuff and setting it up.

Take enough cash with you but keep most of your money separate from your smaller bills. This way you can pull out the smaller wad for small purchases. Pay attention to who the vendors are, try to determine if they are professional salespeople or just your everyday civilian trying to get rid of the stuff from their attic. Both will have good deals but you will have to be a tougher negotiator with the professional vendors to get the good deals.

Most flea market vendors expect you to negotiate with them and they set their prices to reflect this. It should be rare that you pay the initial asking price on any item, unless it’s so low that it just makes sense. One way to get better pricing from vendors is to buy items in bulk. If for example, a vendor has boots selling for $15 each but you are planning to buy 4 pair, offer to pay $10 or $12 a pair. You are still getting quality boots much cheaper than the retail price.

It’s important to start out early in the morning so you can get the good stuff before someone else comes along and snaps it up but vendors are also more prone to negotiate pricing late in the day. If you see something you like that is out of your price range, try hanging around till later in the day to approach the vendor or if you live close, go home and come back just before closing time.

A flea market is a great place to also teach your kids the art of negotiation and the value of money. Take some time before you make the flea market trip to make a list with your child of items they would like to have. Give them a specific amount of money, for example $10 or $20 and then let them take control over negotiating for things they find. On the way home, talk about deals they made that were good and ones they made that could have been better.

Where Can I Find the Best Flea Markets?

Each region of the United States has a schedule of annual flea and antique markets that take place every year. You can find a specific schedule of them here. In most cases you can find a flea market local to your area by checking the newspaper advertisements, checking craigslist for your area, or searching online. Keep in mind that some flea markets are made up of mostly professional vendors selling new items whereas others may have more amateur vendors with used items for sale.

The days of the week for your flea market may also make a difference as to what items you find for sale. Some flea markets have more professional vendors selling new items during the week and then more of a mix of new and used items on the weekends. Or your flea market may have “Amateur Only” days on Saturdays where professional vendors selling new items are discouraged. If you’re looking for multiples of new items you’ll have better luck from professional vendors.

If you really want to go all out, plan a trip to one of the world’s largest flea markets, The Highway 127 Corridor Sale, first created in 1995. It begins on the Thursday prior to the first Saturday in the month of August and the sales stretch from Michigan all the way through to Alabama. The 127 Corridor sale has over 3,000 weekend vendors both amateur and professional and items are displayed in yards, parking lots, on the back of trucks, and even in fields along the highway. If you plan to attend, start saving up now so you can make a long list of survival and stockpile items that you need and be ready to purchase items as you find them.

Can I Make Money Selling Stuff at Flea Markets?

There are actually many people who have been relatively successful at selling items via a flea market. The current trend though seems to be that actually making money selling items at flea markets is a complicated and unpredictable thing. Whether or not you can make money depends on how much time and effort you are willing to put into it and the discretionary income of the residents in the vicinity of your flea market. Just like with any endeavor, I’m sure you can find some people who are still making a pretty decent living selling professionally at flea markets, however it seems in recent years, it has become harder for the amateur vendor to make good money.

What Are Some Other Reasons to Visit a Flea Market?

Flea markets are great for scavenging out inexpensive items to add to your survival stockpile but there are other benefits too if you plan for them. Flea markets are generally a melting pot of many different types of people, all in one place. There are the vendors and the customers, and both types of people present an opportunity for you to learn about human behavior.

First, find a spot where you can see and hear what’s going on at several different vendor tables or booths and just watch the negotiations and interactions of others. Pay attention to body language, tone of voice, and phrasing used by the vendor. Can you tell from how the vendor interacts with his customers if he is being honest and fair or trying to swindle unsuspecting customers? How about the customer behavior? Can you tell which customers will haggle the price and which ones will just pay whatever is asked?

Flea market crowds are also a great opportunity to work on honing your situational awareness skills. As you walk along checking out the goods for sale, tune your ears to what is happening around you. See if you can predict the type of person coming up behind or beside you by the way they talk or by the crunch of their feet on the gravel path.

Watch the movement of people in the crowd. Look for anyone that stands out by the way they move. Is anyone moving quicker than most of the people in the crowd? Does anyone seem to be moving much slower? Take note of how people in the crowd are dressed and what items they are buying. Do you see anyone that you can tell is carrying an EDC or a weapon such as a knife or gun? Watching the crowd for these kinds of things can be a great way to hone your observation skills.

Practice being a gray man. Which people do you notice right away, the ones that draw your attention or catch your eye? Can you blend into the crowd? Match your pace to that of the crowd, pay attention to how they speak, and what they are wearing. See how many times you can walk down the same row without drawing weird or suspicious looks from vendors. Purchase some items and duck into the bathroom and change clothes, do you still get noticed? Can you walk beside someone for any length of time without them giving you weird looks? Don’t overdo it and get into trouble with security!

Whether you are new to prepping or an experienced prepper, the flea market can be a great resource for you. Use flea markets to create or replenish your survival stockpile at less than retail prices or take advantage of the crowds to practice and hone your negotiation and observation skills. Just remember, there may be other not so honorable people there to take advantage of the crowds too, so keep your wallet hidden and don’t be flashy about how much cash you have on hand.

How to Make Smoke Bombs

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by Nicholas

Disclaimer: the advice given in this article is for information purposes only. Before making smoke bombs, check the rules and regulations where you live. Always use protective equipment.

Smoke bombs are a firework-like piece of equipment that, as the name suggests, will produce smoke once they are ignited. They have found a place in the military, with law enforcement, and in paintball or air soft matches. But there’s another place where they will be equally useful, in a survival or disaster situation.

HOW WILL SMOKE BOMBS SAVE YOUR LIFE IN A SURVIVAL OR DISASTER SITUATION?

Before we dive into the different methods to make smoke bombs, it’s important that we first run down the various instances where they could save your life. This way you’ll understand why they are a necessary component of a disaster or survival plan, and you’ll also feel more motivated to make them using the methods that we will discuss later on.

There will no doubt be scenarios in a disaster situation where you will want to be fully visible.  But there will also be scenarios where you will want to be invisible. The beauty of smoke bombs is that they can potentially save your life in both of these instances.

In a wilderness situation, if you are lost or in trouble and need to be visible, smoke bombs that are colored can also signal for help. Red and yellow colored smoke bombs work best for this scenario because they also stand out the best against the natural colors of the wilderness.

In a grid down scenario, looters and raiders will be a major threat in both urban and suburban areas.  One of the best defenses you can have to protecting your home, assuming you chosen to bug in rather than bug out, is to convey the sense that your house is not worth taking. Black colored smoke bombs from within your house can create the impression that your home is on fire, and any burglars or raiders will hopefully move on to the next home.

The next scenario for how a smoke bomb could save your life is probably the one that you had in mind all along: it temporarily hides you from being a target. Even though smoke bombs will produce their smoke for only one to four minutes at the most, just a couple of them is enough to screen an area and allow you to find cover or make a daring escape.

Smoke bombs are an incredibly valuable survival item and these are just three of the survival scenarios where they can save your life. You should absolutely have at least two or three of them in your survival pack, your bug out bag, and your home survival kit.

But do you know how to make smoke bombs on your own with completely ordinary products that we take for granted? If not, the next three methods will teach you how you can.

POTASSIUM NITRATE, CORN SYRUP AND SUGAR METHOD

Now that we have learned why smoke bombs are important and how they can save your life, we can start to talk about how to make them. Our first method is the Potassium Nitrate, Corn Syrup and Sugar method.

Ingredients:

  • Cane Sugar
  • Corn Syrup (preferably dark)
  • Potassium Nitrate
  • Water
  • Scale That Measures in Grams
  • Sauce Pan
  • Wooden Spoon
  • Cardboard Tube
  • Fuse

All of the above items you should either already have or have easy access to buy at stores prior to a post-SHTF event. You can also use substitutes for some of these things. For example, instead of cane sugar, you can use regular sugar if necessary. Or if you don’t have potassium nitrate available, hi-yield stump remover has over ninety-nine percent potassium nitrate in it.  Light corn syrup can also be used in place of dark corn syrup.

Directions:

  • Measure out thirty grams of potassium nitrate
  • Pour the potassium nitrate into your sauce pan
  • Measure out twenty-five grams of sugar, and then also pour it into the sauce pan
  • Pour two drops worth of the corn syrup into the sauce pan
  • Pour a cup of hot water into your sauce pan; the potassium nitrate should dissolve. If not, stir until dissolved.
  • Heat your sauce pan over a medium to high flame and bring it almost to a boil
  • In a half hour to an hour the water should be cooked off, and the mixture will morph into a paste like substance
  • Bring the temperature of the heat down to low after the paste has formed or started to form
  • Continue to keep the sauce pan over the flame until after all the water has been cooked out of the paste
  • Move your sauce pan around until the paste comes together in the center of it
  • Remove the sauce pan from the stove and allow it to cool off for at least three minutes
  • As the paste starts to cool down, it will also start to harden
  • Take the spoon and transfer the paste into your cardboard tube; try to keep as much of the paste together as you can rather than allowing it to separate.
  • Take your fuse and insert one end of it at least a half inch into the mixture in the cardboard tube
  • Cap off the ends of the cardboard tube and drill a hole through one of the caps for your fuse to fit through

That’s it! Assuming you used all of the right ingredients and followed the directions correctly, you now have a smoke bomb that will produce dark smoke when lighted. Dark smoke is almost always better than white smoke for survival/disaster purposes, which is why the dark corn syrup and cane sugar are recommended.

This smoke bomb will burn very violently after it has caught fire, so when testing it out, make sure that you do in a place where it will not start a fire for safety purposes. In addition, this smoke bomb must be stored in a dry location or else it will not work right when you need it to.

For a visual demonstration of how to make smoke bombs out of potassium nitrate, corn syrup, and sugar, watch this video:

THE PING PONG BALL METHOD

Yes, you really can make a DIY smoke bomb that works effectively out of little more than ping pong balls. It will produce whatever color of smoke that your ping pong balls are.  Let’s see how you can:

Ingredients:

  • Four Ping Pong Balls (color determines the color of the smoke)
  • Aluminum Foil
  • Screwdriver
  • Scissors
  • Pencil

Directions:

  • Cut a hole into one of the ping pong balls; use either a knife or a screwdriver
  • Take the three other ping pong balls and cut them up into smaller sized pieces
  • Place these pieces into the hole of the first ping pong ball
  • Take a pencil and stick it into the hole of the first ping pong ball; the purpose of the pencil is to make a mold for the foil in the next step
  • Wrap everything in your aluminum foil
  • Pull the pencil out of the aluminum foil, but the pencil’s shape should still remain (this will serve as the chimney that the smoke will then travel through
  • To use the smoke bomb, light a flame underneath the ball
  • Shortly, the smoke will then travel out of the hole and the chimney
  • Toss the smoke bomb and allow it to smoke; make sure it’s in a safe area and that you don’t breathe in the smoke.

To visually see how to make smoke bombs out of ping pong balls, check out this

video:

THE COLD PACK AND NEWSPAPER METHOD

This method of making smoke bombs produces white smoke and can be made with little more than your morning newspapers and the cold packs that you probably already have in your freezer. If you don’t have any cold packs, you can purchase them at most grocery or drug stores

Ingredients:

  • Cold Pack
  • Gloves
  • Knife
  • Bucket
  • 10 Sheets of Newspaper
  • Water
  • String or Cordage

Directions:

  • Take the cold pack and open it up to access the ammonium nitrate
  • Take out the water bag that is inside of the cold pack
  • Put on your gloves and exercise caution around the granules; it can be slightly toxic to inhale or get on your skin
  • Pour the granules into your bucket and slowly pour water into the bucket; if you pour too much, however, the bombs will not smoke
  • Stir around the granules until they have dissolved; this will form your ammonium nitrate solution
  • Take ten sheets of newspaper, and then fold each of them over twice so that you get quarter squares
  • Dip each sheet into the solution of ammonium nitrate for thirty seconds apiece
  • Remove the sheets and unfold them; do so carefully to avoid ripping or tearing the sheets
  • Lay out the sheet on a flat surface under the sun; your driveway is a great place to do this, but make sure that it’s not on a particularly windy day and hold down the sheets with rocks over the corners
  • Lift the paper up off of the pavement once it is easy to do so
  • Roll up each of the sheets and then wrap a string around the middle; don’t wrap them too tight or too loosely
  • At this point, your ammonium nitrate smoke bombs are technically complete, but you can choose whether you would like to keep them at this length or cut them into shorter pieces (the shorter the piece the less smoke there will be)

If not much smoke is produced when you light the smoke bomb, the reason why is probably because you added too much water to the bucket.

Remember to exercise caution throughout this process. After you are finished putting the smoke bomb together, wash your hands with soap thoroughly and consider taking a shower to be safe if any gets on the rest of your skin.

A video demonstration of how to make smoke bombs out of newspapers and the ammonium nitrate in cold packs can be found here:

CONCLUSION

Making smoke bombs out of everyday items is an important skill when it comes to survival and preparedness, but unfortunately it’s also one that many preppers overlook.  Smoke bombs are legal in all fifty states, and so long as you use them safely (avoid testing them near roads or in a public area, for example) you can test them out as much as you want.

In this article you have been taught three different methods for producing homemade smoke bombs out of simple house items that we take for granted on a day to day basis. After you’ve made these smoke bombs, place two or three of them in your bug out bag and your home survival kit, so that they will always be ready for when you need them.  High humidity, heat, and moisture will all decrease the life of your smoke bombs.  For that reason, always store your smoke bombs in cool and dry locations to get the longest shelf life.

As a final note, remember to put safety as your first and foremost concern when making, testing, and storing your smoke bombs. Always wash your hands before and after making your smoke bombs, make sure you follow the steps exactly as we outlined them and have the right materials ready. Never test out your smoke bombs in an area that could easily catch fire.  Have a fire extinguisher handy and consider wearing protective gloves and safety goggles when testing as well.

Once you’ve made and tested your smoke bombs, you can take comfort in knowing that your survival and disaster preparedness skills have just been upped a notch and your chances of survival have increased. Good luck!

Making Your Own Walking Stick

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by Pearl

A walking stick serves a number of uses. It is often used in hiking, for walking in uneven terrain. It can also be used by those injured and the elderly for support and balance. And if you have a lot of miles ahead of you, using a walking stick will help you cover more ground and will lessen the burden on your tiring shoulders, knees, and feet. In a post SHTF scenario, it will also serve you well to have a walking stick as there may be a lot of walking involved to get to safety. You may also have to go through the woods, in which a stick would be very much essential.

In this article, I will be covering the steps on how to DIY a walking stick. Some of the sections are optional and may not be applicable if you are pressed for time and don’t have a lot of supplies available. Selecting a stick may be simple enough but there are also things to consider if you want rigid stick that will last longer. This article will also discuss the other merits of a walking stick that can lead to a longer and healthier life. Read on below to get started.

Selecting the stick

It all starts with finding the right kind of wood. Hardwoods usually make the best walking sticks as they are the sturdiest, examples of which are maple, alder, cherry, aspen, and sassafras.  Look for a straight piece of wood that reaches at least up to your armpit and around one or two diameter in length.

Your stick should not be too short and not too thick. Examine it for any signs of damage or decay due to insect infestation. Once you find one, test its strength by lodging one end of the stick inside a gap like in a tree and press it as hard as you can to see if it snaps. Be careful though as it may injure you if it breaks.

As much as possible, do not take one from a living tree so as not cause further damage to nature. In addition dead trees also provide more rigid branches. You’re bound to find one lying somewhere.

Trimming the stick

To trim it the desired length, hold the stick upright with one end firmly touching the ground. If the stick is for your own use, hold the stick in a manner similar to when you are waking, with your arm bent at the elbow at approximately a 90 degree angle. Mark the stick at least two inches above your hand. Cut it at a higher length if you are planning to decorate your stick. If you are making one for someone, let him or follow the same procedure and mark it at least two inches above is hand. When uncertain of the recipient’s height, a length of about 55-65 inches would make a good walking stick.  Cut the stick using a hand saw or a large knife.

Removing the twigs and the bark

For this step, you can use a pocket knife or any larger knife. Strip the stick first of any twigs before working on the bark. Whittling off the bark is not required but it is recommended if you want a smooth finish. Shave off the bark away from your body. Do it in quick, shallow strokes to avoid digging into the wood. It will take some time so be patient. Continue whittling until you see the bright wood underneath. You can try practicing in other branches first until you get the hang of it.

Drying the stick

The time it takes for your stick to dry depends on a several factors such as type of wood and environmental conditions. While fresh wood is easier to trim and whittle, dry wood is more rigid and durable. Drying also depends on sunlight and humidity. It can take up to days, two weeks, or even as long as one month. Let it dry until it becomes rigid. Don’t leave it out for too long though because it can become brittle. Check your stick once in a while to see if it’s dry.

Sanding

If you can spare the time and have sandpaper available, try sanding your stick for a smoother texture. If you want to go all the way, use a 100 grit sandpaper first, sanding the knots first before moving on to the rest of stick. Then, redo all the standing using a 200 grit sandpaper and later, a 400 grit. Once you are satisfied with your work, wipe the stick down with a lint-free cotton and tung oil to remove any sawdust. You can also wipe it with a rag with paint thinner. It is recommended that you use a mask and an n95 respirator while in a ventilated area in doing it. This step is not required and you can do so if you have the time.

Decorating

You can personalize your own stick for identification and for your enjoyment. Using your pocket knife, you can put drawings, symbols, wood burnings, emblems, and initials. Decorating is usually done on the top portion but it’s up to you. It is also recommended to carve a grip into your stick to make it more comfortable to hold.

Staining and sealing the stick

If you want to improve the look of your stick and to preserve the carvings and initials you have decorated it with, you can seal it with a wood stain. Read the instructions on the package to know how many coats to apply, but it usually takes three coatings to achieve a darker finish. Let each coat dry overnight before applying the next one. Lightly sand the stick and wipe it in between applications. Then finish it off with three coats of clear urethra varnish. Similar to the wood coat, lightly sand the stick and wipe it in between coatings. The varnish will seal the wood and also prevent it from rotting.

Adding a grip

If you have not yet carved a grip in your walking stick, you can add one using leather, twine, nylon, o braided rope and fasten it with pins or nails. You can also secure it using adhesives such as the gripping warp used in tennis rackets or golf clubs. Grip tape used in hockey sticks works just as well. This will be particularly useful if you have sweaty hands or if you want to have a firmer grip on your stick.

Protecting the base

The base of your stick is most susceptible to cracking, splinting, splintering, or rotting. You can place rubber caps used for canes and walkers. They are available at your local drugstores or any store that sells medical supplies. You can also use rubber stoppers by drill a hole both in the stopper and the stick and glue them together. If you want to take it to the next level, you can use a copper pipe to add more style to your base protector. Just cut an inch of copper pipe that’s about the same diameter with your stick. Whittle the base of your stick until it is able to fit inside the pipe. Apply a quick drying epoxy glue to keep the pipe in place.

Uses For Your Walking Stick

Now that you know how to make a stick, these are just some of the uses of a walking stick you may not have considered before.

As a weapon

In times of danger, especially in a post collapse world, you can use your stick to defend yourself. There may not be enough time to grab a stone or weapon to protect yourself, but with a stick, you already have a defensive tool in your grasp.

A third leg

If there is an obstruction ahead such as a fallen tree and you need a boost, you can prop yourself up using your stick. The stick will help you maintain your balance as you step over this obstacle.

Wading

When crossing a stream, your stick will serve as your guide to assess the depth of the water. It will also save you from slipping or falling into a deep hole ahead.

Marking the trail

When charting through the woods, you may end up getting lost and walking around in circles. But by marking the trees with your stick, you can prevent yourself from experiencing this mishap.

Clearing the path

In walking through a thicket, you can use your stick to rid off twigs or leaves off your face. The stick is also good for clearing spider webs you come across with.

Conclusion

A walking stick, as simple as it may seem, can be a valuable tool you are eventually going to use for your survival. Even in the absence of a SHTF scenario, it is still wise to know how to make a walking stick, especially if you are fond of hiking or camping in the woods. It will make traveling easier, safer, and not to mention less tiring. Even if you don’t need one at the moment, you can try your hand in making one so that when the time comes, you will be more than capable to make your own. In the end, all you need is a good eye to find yourself a good stick and a way with knives and you’re all set.

Have you ever tired making a walking stick yourself? Can you think of other uses for it? Tell us by posting a comment below.

 

Survival Items that Fit in Your Wallet

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by Karen

The worst case scenario for any emergency situation is that you get caught away from home and with nothing on you except your wallet. What happens if your wallet is all you have? Or perhaps you have everyday carry (EDC) items on your keychain, but you want to have another place to store EDC items. Fortunately, there is a compact solution that is perfect, particularly for men, who don’t carry purses in which they can fit any number of EDC items.

Believe it or not, your wallet is a perfect place to store survival gear!  You might not be able to carry everything you would ideally like to carry on your person, but there is more space than you might think in your wallet and there are a number of survival items that can be made small enough to fit in your wallet.  Here are our top picks for survival items that fit in your wallet.

A Small Knife

A knife is one of the most important items to have with you at all times. Yes, there are places where it is illegal to carry a knife, but in general, you should be able to carry one with you at all times. You can easily fit a small folding knife with a 1-inch or 2-inch blade in your wallet. If you want a larger blade, consider removing the hilt of a knife with a 3-inch blade and just putting blade in your wallet.

There are also some knives that have been designed to be carried in a wallet.  For instance, the InstaBlade Credit Card Knife is a stainless steel folding knife that, when folded, is the size of a credit card.  It slides easily into your wallet or can be carried in a pocket.

A Flashlight

Not many people would think they can carry a flashlight in their wallet, but it can be done. There are flashlights that are designed to fit in a wallet and are great when you’re left in the dark. One really cool device is the LEDPocket Credit Card Wallet Light Bulb. This light isn’t the brightest, but it is still useful because it is so compact and is there when you need it.

However, an even better flashlight is the Iain Sinclair EON-C Classic Ultra-Thin Credit Card Light. This is an LED light that has pre-installed lithium batteries that have a long life. The light is powerful, light, and the size of a credit card. Perfect for a wallet.

Water

Okay, you’re not going to put actual water in your wallet, but you can carry a way to purify water in the compact little space. Just put a few water purification tablets in a small Ziploc bag and slip it in your wallet and you are prepared in case you need water in a pinch.

A Can Opener

Like the water, you aren’t going to carry food in your wallet, but you can fit a fabulous little P-38 can opener in your wallet. If you get stuck somewhere in a serious emergency and you can’t get home or to your bugout location right away, you will be able to open cans of food, making it possible for you to eat with relative ease.

An Emergency Firestarter

You should have a way to start fires on your person at all times. A small piece of charcloth, some fire starter powder, and a ferrocerium rod will all fit in your wallet without taking up a lot of space. Just put the fire starter and the charcloth each in their own small Ziploc bag and tuck them in with the ferrocerium rod.

Alternatives to this include a small striker fire starter, matches, or a Fresnel Lens Credit Card Magnifier.  You can also carry a small, good quality lighter, but it might be a bit bulkier.

String

It’s always a good idea to have some sort of strong string or cord with you at all times. You can easily carry some string or lightweight cord in your wallet by wrapping a length of it around a business card (yup, those business cards are handier than you think!). Wrap your cord around the card in a single layer (double if it’s thinner cord) and tuck it in your wallet. You can also do this with dental floss, perhaps include one of each, a stronger, heavier cord and the lighter dental floss.

Small Tools

Your business cards are useful for carrying other survival tools, as well. Any small items, such as fishing hooks, safety pins, sewing needles and some thread, and any other small items you can think of can be taped to a business card and slid into a small compartment in your wallet. When paired with the cord you have wrapped around another business card, you have fishing gear in your wallet at all times, as well as a sewing and small repair kit. That’s pretty impressive.

Some Duct Tape

Yup, you can even carry duct tape in your wallet. Just wrap 20 or 30 feet of duct tape around a business card or an old credit card or bank card. It will be flat and not terribly thick and will still fit inside your wallet with ease.

A Signaling Mirror

Chances are you aren’t going to be stuck out in the wilderness with only your wallet, but you never know when you might need a signal mirror. You can get a signal mirror that is the size and shape of a credit card that will fit snuggly in your wallet. This will provide you with a way to send a signal if you need help or to communicate with someone over a distance.

A Multi-Tool

There are a number of multi-tools that have been designed to fit in your wallet. Many of these come as a flat, stainless steel single-piece the size of a credit card that provides various edges that form rulers, saws, and screwdrivers. The Cha-O-Ha EDC Card is a great example of a single-piece multi-tool.

There are also more comprehensive multi-tools designed to be carried in your wallet. These are also the size of a credit card, but have both stationary and removable parts, such as knife blades, compass, flashlight, tweezers, scissors, fire starter, and signal whistle (what you get depends on what brand and model you purchase). Two great examples are the Tool Logic SVC2 Survival Card and the Victorinox SwissCard Lite. You can seriously have a Swiss Army Knife in your wallet – well, it’s as close as you can get!

A Cell Phone Charger

Having a way to charge your cell phone in an emergency is ideal and having a way to do this that fits in your wallet is even better. Fortunately, a small battery pack designed to fit in a wallet is available and is capable of charging your cell phone to 25% of its total power.  This is perfect in a pinch and a great example is the TravelCard Portable Smartphone Charger.

A Flash Drive

Since we are talking about a wallet here, you can carry copies of your important documents right in your wallet. These come in handy when needed. However, sometimes it’s nice to have more than just the main documents. You might want to have access to your important survival information with you wherever you go, such as those how-to documents that tell you how to build a shelter or what wild food you can forage.

Carrying a USB flash drive in your wallet is a great way to keep all sorts of important information with you. As long as you can access a working computer, you can pull up the information if you need it. Flash drives are also very small on their own, so there isn’t really a need for anything special. Just try to find the thinnest model possible.

Prepaid Phone Card

An international prepaid phone card is a good item to have in your wallet at all times. If the cell networks go down, then you have the option to use a payphone to make a call whenever you need to.

Cash

Yes, cash is considered an emergency item and it happens to be what your wallet is designed to carry, so you probably already have this one covered. However, for the sake of providing a complete list, I will state here that you should always carry some cash on your person.

It is truly amazing what you can fit inside a wallet. Of course, many of these things were designed specifically to be stored and carried in a small space, but some of it is just made with ingenuity. Use your imagination and you can have a lot of the things you would carry in a get-home bag (GHB) right in your wallet. Knowing you have these items on hand whenever you need them and wherever you are will put your mind at ease and ensure you are fully prepared for anything.

What is TEOTWAWKI and How to Survive it

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by Megan

“TEOTWAWKI” means The End Of The World As We Know It. Wow, that sounds pretty bad, right? The truth is not many of us can truly have a real idea of what TEOTWAWKI will actually be like until it’s happening. Your grandparents or great grandparents might have a small inkling if they lived through any part of the Great Depression.

You already know that something is different about the world today than it was ten or even five years ago. The state of the world is getting worse, not better. It’s happening fast and it’s happening all around us. And a lot of people are blind to it or are in denial about what’s coming.

Now here’s the even scarier news. Being prepared doesn’t guarantee you and your family won’t struggle during a TEOTWAWKI event. It does give you a much bigger fighting chance than those who don’t prepare. Keep in mind that just moving from the city to a rural area won’t save you. Stockpiling three years of food and water won’t make survival a sure thing either. There are actions you can take to increase your odds of survival but there is no guarantee.

What is TEOTWAWKI?

The reason they call it TEOTWAWKI is not because all humans will be wiped from the earth. Although that’s possible with some events, it’s not likely. But a TEOTWAWKI event will change the way we live our daily life, not just for a couple of weeks or months, but long term and possibly FOREVER. Life as we know it, and as our children or grandchildren know it right now, may NEVER AGAIN be the same.

Okay, so TEOTWAWKI events are going to be bad. What kind of events are we talking about here?

Civil Unrest/Disobedience

Civil unrest and disobedience is typically more a gradual change but can still change life as we know it. Europe has already experienced this due to the recent influx of migrants and refugees. For Europeans, life has already changed drastically. The Schengen Agreement, made by a group of more than 20 countries in Europe that had basically done away with strict controls and passports at their borders, has been broken. Trust and cooperation is gone.

Europe is experiencing widespread anger and violence. There are protests and even rioting across the continent. In October of last year, in response to the waves of migrants arriving in Finland, the Soldiers of Odin were founded. Their stated goal is to improve security and provide protection from the criminal element of the immigrants but the founder of this group has connections to Neo-Nazism and their tactics have ignited concerns of vigilantism.

Violent attacks are occurring with alarming frequency in Calais, France. Migrants have for years camped temporarily while waiting to cross the English Channel to a better life in the UK. The huge numbers of migrants from war torn countries such as Syria, Sudan, and Afghanistan in the last year are causing increasing problems. The population living in semi-permanent camps exposed to the elements, has become known as the Calais Jungles, and ranges from 3,000-7,000 migrants, including women and children.

Asylum seekers are desperately trying to force their way through the tunnel and have caused increasing chaos, anger, and violence from migrants, right wing groups, and French authorities. Migrants are arming themselves and a group of migrants attacked a school bus full of British children returning home from a trip back in January. No injuries were reported as a result of the attack but the bus was damaged and the children traumatized by the attack.

This is quite likely the TEOWAWKI for many Europeans.

Large Scale Natural Disasters

Large scale natural disasters cannot be prevented. Due to technology, we can sometimes get a little advanced warning from the news reports. Hurricane Sandy raged from October 25th to November 2, 2012 and affected several countries and nearly half the states in the U.S. from Florida to Maine. Effects were felt as far west as Michigan and Wisconsin. For people in those areas, life was altered drastically for an extended period of time. TEOTWAWKI will be much worse and will affect pretty much everyone.

Many of you will remember, Hurricane Katrina, August 23 to 31st of 2005. Katrina was a category 5 hurricane but thankfully had downgraded to category 3 when it hit New Orleans. Over 100,000 people were displaced and over 1,400 people died. To date it’s the deadliest hurricane in the U.S. since 1928. New Orleans is still struggling to rebuild ten years later. It was a TEOTWAWKI event for many New Orleans residents but not for the rest of us.

Solar or Nuclear EMP

An EMP is a short burst or wave of electromagnetic energy. It can be natural, as in a solar EMP or Coronal Mass Ejection (CME), or it can be man-made as in a Nuclear Electromagnetic Pulse (NEMP) or High-Altitude Electromagnetic Pulse (HEMP).

An EMP event would produce large scale disruption and even permanent damage to any kind of electronics in a wide ranging area. Entire transportation and communication systems would likely be wiped out. Imagine what that would be like? If half the country or even several states had no vehicles, no electronics, no way to communicate with anyone, no way to travel except on foot, skateboards, or maybe bicycles.

Terrorist Attack

130 people died in the recent attack in Paris. According to The National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START), from 1978 to 2013, there were on average, less than 5 attacks per year that killed over 100 civilians. That number as reported for 2014 is an average of 26 attacks annually with more than 100 civilian deaths.

In 2015, there was at least one attack resulting in over 100 CIVILIAN deaths EVERY single month from January to November! The majority of these large scale attacks have taken place in the Middle East and Africa. But the U.S. has documented at least fifteen smaller terrorist type attacks just since 2013. That’s more than the U.S. experienced in the entire decade from 2000-2010!

Pandemic Disease

The Ebola Pandemic. Did you know that it actually began in December of 2013 in Meliandou, Gueckedou Prefecture, Guinea? It didn’t become widespread news until it hit the U.S. just over a full year later. A TEOTWAWKI event may not happen instantly or within a matter of weeks or even months, it could build gradually over a period of years. Had officials not been able to contain the Ebola Pandemic as they did, there wouldn’t have been much that could be done. The disease had an entire year to travel all over the world before officials took it seriously.

Economic Collapse (similar to what happened in WWII)

A TEOTWAWKI event means things will be worse than most of us have ever experienced. Stores will start off letting people shop only a few at a time because the power is out. Purchases will be limited. Lines will be long. Within days, stores will be completely out of certain items. Trucks won’t be able to make deliveries because gas pumps aren’t working. Eventually the stores will shut down indefinitely. Paper currency and even gold and silver may be worthless. The banking and economy system as we know it will collapse.

What Are the Common Elements of a TEOTWAWKI Event?

  1. The Initial Hit-This is the damage from the initial event when it hits. It could be weather related or a nuclear or terrorist attack. If you get any warning at all, you will have to make a decision about whether to bug in or bug out. Read more about what to expect during this initial hit and how to survive the first 24 hours post disaster.
  2. Wildfires and Structural Fires-weather related events and an EMP can cause explosions and fires to ignite spontaneously. Many people will lose their homes and businesses to wildfires and structural fires.
  3. Exposure to Elements-many homes and buildings are destroyed during the initial impact of a weather related event or even an EMP. People will be displaced from their homes and those that are unprepared will face exposure to the elements. This kind of prolonged exposure can be fatal, make sure you know how to make a shelter.
  4. Infection/Sanitation-Because water systems and sanitation systems will be no longer working, sanitation becomes a huge problem. The risk of infection increases too because of the wounded and dying in the streets.
  5. Violence-A TEOTWAWKI event can bring out the worst in people. There will be violence and looting in the streets and shops. Even good, decent people will be forced to loot or take from others in order to feed themselves and their children. Tempers will be short and people will be quick to jump to violence over little things. You will need to prepare to survive martial law being enacted.
  6. Widespread Hunger and Dehydration-Eventually the food available in the stores and shops is gone. Those who have not prepared and even those who prepared but not well enough, will run out of food and water. Widespread prolonged hunger and dehydration will take its toll on every community. To give your family a fighting opportunity, you will need to become an expert at discreet outdoor cooking for survival and how to find and clean water for drinking.
  7. Severe Psychological Stress-People will face severe and prolonged psychological stress during a TEOWAWKI event. Even if there is a movement to rebuild, that psychological stress will have a sustained impact.

So How Can You Increase Your Odds of Surviving TEOTWAWKI?

The best way to survive a TEOTWAWKI event is to alter the way you and your family live.

Right now.

Before a TEOTWAWKI event hits.

Read about and consider strategic relocation as explained in Joel Skousen’s book, Strategic Relocation: North American Guide to Safe Places. If you’re going to strategically relocate, you need to do it before a TEOTWAWKI event hits.

Strategic relocation isn’t simple and it usually isn’t cheap either. Not everyone will be able to just pick up and move. So let’s say it’s just not feasible for you and your family to relocate at any point in the near future.

NWAWKI (New World As We Know It)

If you manage to survive TEOTWAWKI, you have to be ready to survive in the new reality, in the new world as we know it (NWAWKI). It will be an entirely new world. Society and its people will be forever changed. And there’s really no way to predict precisely what this new world will look like. It’s likely the world would rebuild, but how long would it take to restore a collapsed economy or rebuild the health and stamina of a world population devastated by disease?

Think about how we live today. Honestly assess how you or your children react when you are forced to be without power for just a couple of hours or a day. If chaos, boredom and crankiness rears its head in your house when the power goes out for just a brief period of time, imagine what it would be like long term.

Whether you strategically relocate, bug in, or bug out, to survive TEOTWAWKI, you need four basic things as part of your long term survival plan:

  • Plenty of water all year long
  • One or more alternative ways to heat and power your home
  • Enough sustainable food for you and your group.
  • A way to defend what is yours from desperate people.
  • A comprehensive plan to master as many homesteading and off grid skills before TEOTWAWKI.

So, even though there is no guarantee of surviving TEOTWAWKI for any prepper, no matter how prepared, you can make sure that you and your family have the best opportunity for survival. Learn as much as you can about those common elements you can expect during and immediately after a TEOTWAWKI event and plan to overcome those. But to give yourself the best chance, you need to also master the skills needed to survive in the NWAWKI, no matter what it may look like.

 

GearBest 2nd Anniversary: Invite You to Join Our Party!

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Keep Breath Fresh and Germs at Bay Post-SHTF with DIY Mouthwash

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When planning for post-SHTF, a do-it-yourself (DIY) mouthwash recipe is one way to keep your breath fresh, keep nasty bacteria at bay, and help your gums and teeth stay healthy. Sure, your stockpile includes some store bought mouthwash, but that will eventually run out. Personal hygiene, especially oral hygiene, is still an important part of maintaining your health.

Learning how to make your own mouthwash is easy, with practice and a little trial and error, you can find a recipe that works well for you and your family. Many people find that DIY mouthwash works so well for them that they decide to give up store bought mouthwash even pre-SHTF. In addition to being smart planning for SHTF, it’s a great way for you to save money every day, starting right now!

Reasons to Use Mouthwash

Using a DIY mouthwash is a great plan because you can customize your ingredients. There are many, many different recipes out there that you can use to make your own mouthwash. All of them can be modified to suit you and your family. As long as you include some basic ingredients, everything else can be altered to suit your preferences. Plus, you make it yourself so you know EXACTLY what’s in it.

DIY Mouthwash is chemical free. This is a huge plus if you already recognize the need to reduce the amount of chemicals you put in your body. If you don’t like a. It’s also easy to substitute other ingredients if you don’t want to use alcohol or don’t have it available post-SHTF.

The last reason to use DIY mouthwash is that it’s much cheaper than mouthwash you buy in the stores and post-SHTF, most stores will be shut down or emptied due to looting very quickly. It will take some time for stores to re-stock if and when things begin to return to normal. Why go without mouthwash if you can simply find some recipes you like now and be prepared to make some up when SHTF?

Basic Materials You Will Need to Stock or Gather:

  • Several small jars or containers to mix and store mouthwash
  • A fine mesh strainer or piece of cheesecloth
  • At least 8 ounces of water (filtered or distilled)
  • Baking Soda (used in most recipes)
  • Alcohol (if desired)
  • Apple Cider vinegar or salt water (instead of alcohol)
  • Your choice of herbs (dried) or essential oil extracts

Possible Herb Choices:

When determining what kinds of herbs to use in your DIY mouthwash, it’s really a matter of personal preference and your own needs. Many herbs have natural antiseptic, antiviral, antibacterial or antimicrobial properties, to clean, freshen, or soothe the mouth while prohibiting growth of bacteria.

Clove is well known to have multiple healing properties. It can be used in a paste or oil to relieve the pain of a toothache temporarily. Where it Grows: It’s native to the tropic areas of Asia and takes 20 years to produce buds, so be sure to stock up in advance.

Cinnamon contains antioxidants and inhibits growth of bacteria and has been proven to cut the amount of bacteria in your mouth in half. Where it Grows: Cinnamon can actually be grown at home, in soil that is somewhat dry. A cinnamon plant in a pot can thrive for years without special attention.

Echinacea is an herb that is commonly known to fight cold and flu symptoms, because of its ability to help boost the body’s immune system. Its anti-microbial quality makes it effective in mouthwash because it serves to draw out infection that causes toothache.

Where it Grows: It may not be readily available in the wild so be sure to buy this herb from a cultivated source and add to your stockpile.

Peppermint-adds that well known mint taste but also helps to freshen breath and is antibacterial. Will grow almost anywhere in the world.

Where it Grows: Can be found growing wild along ponds or streams, in rich soil that drains well. Needs partial sun but potency of oils is enhanced by full sun. Grow in containers or in beds edged with plastic or other material to prevent it from overtaking your garden. Ideally peppermint plants should be rotated to another area every 3-4 years.

Plantain typically thought of by most as just another weed, it is both antibacterial and antimicrobial. It has been used in medicinal remedies to help wounds heal faster which makes it a great addition to mouthwash if you are plagued with mouth sores.

Where it Grows: Can be found growing in almost any backyard in North America and Europe. Avoid harvesting from along a dusty road or from a ditch due to possible contamination. This herb is also very high in calcium and Vitamin A. It provides Vitamin K and Vitamin C (ascorbic acid). It’s multiple medicinal properties and adaptability to about any growing environment make it an excellent herb to have in the backyard or garden. This weed is not the same as the plantain fruit similar to a banana.

Rosemary is a strong scented herb with antioxidants. It is cooling and soothing for sore gums. Where it Grows: Can be grown in a pot or along a driveway or path as a hedge in warmer climates. Needs moist soil. In colder climates plant in pots that can be brought inside for the winter.

Tea Tree oil (Melaleuca) has been used for many centuries by aboriginal tribes because of its antibacterial qualities. To make the oil yourself from tea tree leaves, steam them first and then extract the oil. Where it Grows: Can be grown from seed in 3-inch flat tray. Careful care and watering is needed as well as transplant of tree seedlings to individual pots at 3 inches in height.

Turmeric is a popular medicinal herb, known for its anti-inflammatory qualities. Where it Grows: A tropical plant, turmeric can be grown indoors but will not handle any climate with temperatures less than 65 degrees Fahrenheit. It is grown from a rhizome or tuber, not seeds and takes as long as 10 months to develop roots. You harvest the roots not the leaves to use for your mouthwash.

There are many, many herbs that you can choose to use in your mouthwash depending on what you have available in your post-SHTF herb garden and your individual oral hygiene needs. It’s important to research the properties, including any side effects of the herbs you have stocked or plan to have available so you know best how to use them.

Typically leaves should be picked from young plants in early morning. Experiment and create your own recipes. Honey or other sweeteners can be added to just about any recipe to sweeten the taste.

Basic Steps for Most Herbal DIY Mouthwash recipes

  1. Boil it- bring to a boil, add enough water to cover herbs. Heating the herbs brings out the properties in the dried or raw herbs.
  2. Steep It—the amount of time for steeping varies according to preference. Can be as short as twenty minutes or as much as 3 weeks. Shake well once daily.
  3. Strain It—use a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth to get all the bits of herbs from the liquid.

Some basic recipes may only call for you to mix the ingredients together and then put into a bottle with your choice of essential oils or dried herbs. It’s good practice to shake before using each time.

Quick and Easy Mouthwash

  • 8 ounces of water (distilled)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2-3 drops of peppermint essential oil.

Mix all ingredients thoroughly in glass jar or container. Always shake well before using. Swish in mouth for 30-60 seconds.

Sample Herbal Recipes

  • 8 ounces of alcohol such as rum (you can substitute salt water or apple cider vinegar)
  • 1 TBSP rosemary (dried)
  • 1 tsp clove (dried)
  • 2 TBSP peppermint (dried)

Cover herbs with distilled water and boil. Pour herbs and water into glass jar, add alcohol or your substitute. Store covered in cool, darkened cupboard for 2-3 weeks. Shake mixture daily to help infuse alcohol and herbs. After 2-3 weeks, strain with cheesecloth to remove the herb particles from the liquid. Add 10 drops of essential oil (peppermint or cinnamon) if desired, close tightly and store in dark glass bottle. Use approximately 1 teaspoon each use with water and swish for 30-60 seconds.

Minty Fresh Mouthwash

  • 8 ounces of water (distilled)
  • 1 TBSP alcohol (vodka or substitute)
  • 2 TBSP parsley (fresh)
  • 2 TBSP mint (fresh)

Mix above ingredients together well. Use fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth to remove large herb particles. Store in tightly closed dark glass bottle. Rinse each time with about 1 TBSP of the mixture.

Teeth Whitening Mouthwash

  • 2 ounces of water (distilled)
  • 4 ounces of aloe vera juice
  • 1 tsp. of baking soda
  • ½ tbsp. witch hazel
  • 8-10 drops essential peppermint (or substitute) oil

Stir all ingredients together well and pour into 6 oz. dark glass bottle. Store for up to two weeks in cool, dark place.

As with any toothpaste or mouthwash, avoid swallowing when rinsing. Be sure to research any ingredient you decide to use thoroughly and check with your physician before beginning to use any recipe. Essential oils can be very potent and should be used carefully.

Have fun with some of these recipes and experiment to find the one that’s right for you and your family. Feel free to modify any of the above recipes to suit your preference and taste. If you learn and practice your DIY mouthwash recipes now, you will certainly be better prepared to maintain your oral hygiene post-SHTF.  What recipes for DIY mouthwash have you tried?

How to Make Your Own Survival Equipment

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by Karen

Part of survival is having enough food, water, and supplies to ensure you can survive for a period of time in any emergency situation, such as a natural disaster or any major catastrophic event, whether it is natural or man-made.  But if the event lasts long enough to chew through that food and water and the supplies you have stocked up, then what?  Perhaps the most important part of survival isn’t what you have stored in your house or bug-out location, but what you have stored in your head.

Skills are tantamount to long-term survival in any societal collapse.  You won’t ever lose them, no one can steal them from you, and they are something you can share with others.  Some of the best skills to develop are those related to making your own survival gear, which comes in handy when you can’t afford to buy the gear or it eventually wears out or breaks and you have no way to buy a replacement.  We won’t cover DIY weapons in this article, but there are still loads of fun and incredibly useful DIY equipment you can make.  Check out our top picks for survival equipment you can make on your own.

Make Your Own Water Filter

Water is your number one need in any survival situation.  If you don’t have access to clean water, you won’t last long and it can be hard to come by clean water if you aren’t able to get it from your tap.  The very first thing you should know is that filtering your water doesn’t mean purifying it and the very best way to purify water to remove the bacteria that can make you sick or even kill you is to boil it.  Having said this, you will still want to filter the water to get rid of debris, dirt, and chemical impurities and you can easily make a filter to do this.

Materials

For a DIY water filter you will need:

  • A 2-liter soda bottle, if available, or a big, rectangular piece of bark, such as birch or white pine, that is at least 14 inches wide
  • Gravel (if you are using a bottle without a cap or a cone of bark)
  • Moss or grass (moss is best because it acts as a better filter and it contains iodine)
  • Sand
  • Charcoal

Method

If you are using a soda bottle, cut the bottle in half around the middle to separate the top from the bottom.  You will invert the top of the bottle and use this to create your filter.  If you are using bark, then roll the bark into a large funnel and secure it.  Then you can layer your filtering materials, starting with some gravel, which you will place at the bottom of your filter to help hold in the other filtering materials.

Alternate a layer of moss, a layer of charcoal, and a layer of sand, making each layer about 1-2 inches thick, then repeat the layers of sand and charcoal, ending off with a courser grade of sand.  Three important things to note include:

  • The opening at the end of the filter should be quite small to help slow to movement of the water through the filter
  • The charcoal should be crushed into a powder/small flake size to provide more surface area for the removal of contaminants
  • The layers of material in the filter should be pushed down so they are packed in quite tightly before the water is poured in so the water will move more slowly through the filter

You might have to filter the water 2-3 times, depending on how dirty it is to begin with.  As the water runs through the filter, it will drip out the end relatively slowly.  Once you have clear water, boil it and then you can drink it.  Check out this video to see how it’s done:

Make Your Own Rope

Rope is one of the most useful items you can have in any survival situation.  In fact, you can never have too much rope.  The best thing about rope is it’s all around you whether you are in the city or a rural area or the wilderness.  All you need are the right kinds of plants, which happen to grow in abundance almost anywhere.  The best thing about making your own rope like this is that you don’t actually need anything other than the plants!  No tools are necessary, although you can use a knife if you have one (as a survivalist you should!).

Materials

There are many options when looking for plant fiber to make your own rope.  The stalks of some plants are ideal.  You can also use the inner bark, small roots, or the leaves of some trees and other miscellaneous materials:

  • Stalk plants include milkweed, dogbane, stinging nettle, fireweed, velvet leaf, hemp, and evening primrose
  • Trees from which you can use the inner bark include cedar, tulip tree, white basswood, walnut, cherry, cottonwood, oak, hickory, ash, maple, aspen, and elm
  • Trees from which you can use the small roots (rootlets) include cedar, juniper, pine, spruce, sage, yucca, and tamarack
  • Leaves from the yucca tree and cattails and bulrushes can be used
  • Other miscellaneous material (not only plant-derived) that can be used includes sweet grass, cordgrass, greenbrier, sinew, rawhide, and animal hair

The easiest plants to work with are the milkweed, dogbane, and similar stalks because you can simply harvest the stalks and work with them.  Select stalks that have turned brown, not gray.  The gray ones are too old.  Ideally, you want one-year-old stalks.  You also want stalks that are tall simply because they will produce longer pieces of fiber to work with.  You will need to break the stalk off at the base of the plant and gently remove the branches.  If you don’t take care, some of the fiber from the plant will be lost in the process.  You should also take of the top of the plant, where it begins to narrow.

Once the stalk is clear, lay it on a hard surface and flatten it along its length.  This will cause it to split down its length, revealing the inner core of the plant.  You can then gently peel away the outer wood of the plant, starting at the thick end of the stalk.  The core wood you have left is the material for your rope.

It is also easy to find the inner bark of dead trees that are lying on the ground.  You can pry off the bark and strip away the fibrous material that is located between the outer bark and wood.  If you have to take from living trees, then take just take a small amount from each of a number of living trees.  If you take too much from any one tree, the tree will die.

Methods

Whichever material you choose to use, it is very important to ensure it is dry before you start making the rope.  If you use wet plant fibers, the rope will not hold together once the fibers dry.  Whatever the source of your fiber, you will need to crush it between your thumb and finger or roll it along your leg to soften it and remove any bits of bark or harder material.

If you don’t need the rope to be incredibly strong, then you can do a simple wrap.  Hold one end of the bundle of fibers (the more fibers, the stronger the rope) and roll them together across your leg, twisting them in one direction.  Once twisted, have someone hold the middle of the stretch of twisted cord or hold it with your teeth (if it’s not from a poisonous plant) and place the ends together.  When you let go of the middle, the length of cord will automatically twist together and you can secure the ends.

For a stronger rope, you will need the reverse wrap.  Take the bundle of fibers and twist them together in the middle until a kink forms.  You will hold this kink between the thumb and finger of one hand and work with one strand at a time.  Using your free hand, take the bottom strand of fibers and twist it away from you, then wrap it up and over the other strand toward to one time.  Repeat with the other strand and alternate this process until you have reached the end of your available cord.

Check out this video to see a demonstration:

Doing this with one bundle of fibers will make a short cord, but if you need a longer rope, then you will need to splice in more lengths of fiber.  If this is the case, then when you originally make a kink in your bundle of fibers, ensure that one strand is two times as long as the other strand.  Then preform the reverse wrap until you are within an inch or so of the end of the short strand and separate the fibers so it looks frayed at the end.  Fray the end of the new bundle of fibers and mix them in with the short end.  Continue the wrapping process, adding in new fiber bundles within an inch or so of each short strand.

To make an even stronger rope simply take thinner ropes you have create using the reverse wrap and reverse wrap those together.  When the rope is completed you can pass it quickly over a flame to get rid of any protruding fibers, if desired.  Weave the fibers at the ends of the rope back into the rope to “tie” it off.

Make Your Own Fishing Rod

Our final choice in this “Make Your Own” article is to make your own fishing rod.  This is quite simple and if you are anywhere near water, having a functional fishing rod can help you catch much-needed food to keep your body nourished and full of energy.

Materials

To make a fishing rod, you will need a very long branch or sapling tree, 4 to 6 feet long.  Be sure to use a green branch or sapling, something that is alive, because it will have more flexibility.  Flexibility is necessary when you catch a fish and it pulls on the line.  If the branch is old and brittle, it might snap.  If you do have to use an old, dead branch, then choose a thicker one that is stronger.

You will also need your line, which can be any lightweight strings or threads from your own supplies, if you have them.  Lightweight cord or the threads that are used to stitch your tent or tarp will work.  If necessary, you can use heavier material, such as shoes laces or paracord.  You just need to tie them together to make a line long enough.  If you don’t have anything suitable in your gear, then you can use natural fibers, such as strong roots or fibrous plants that can be made into fine cordage (there’s that rope-making again – see above).

Your hook can be made out of anything small in your gear, such as a bent safety pin or bent wire or needles.  You can also use natural materials, such as pieces of snail shell, horn, or bone.  Even small pieces of broken rock will work.

If you have any food at all, a small amount of meat, cheese, or bread attached to the hook will work, but chances are, if you’re making a fishing rod this way, food is already in limited supply.  However, bait can easily be found by digging for worms or turning over a rock or log to find other live insects.  Even crickets and grasshoppers will work.

Method

You will need to remove any branches from the main branch or sapling and you can strip the bark from your pole if you wish, but this is not necessary.  Rather than just tying the line to the narrow end of the pole, which might cause it to break if a large fish is caught, secure the line to the pole by tying it close to the end where you are holding it and wrapping it around the pole toward the narrow end.  You can tie the line at the narrow end to hold it in place.  Check out this video to see how:

Now all you need to do is tie your hook to the end of the line and attached your bait to the hook.  Just be sure that however you tie the line to the hook, it is secure and tight so you won’t lose your hook.  Happy fishing!

Make Your Own Snowshoes

While it would be lovely if all of us lived in a climate that does not experience full out winter, this is not the case.  Tens of millions of people in North America live in regions of extreme temperature fluctuation and have to deal with a lot of snow each year.  If you think global warming will get rid of that snow, think again.  While the winter season might get shorter in duration, it will also become more intense, meaning more snow.

Snowshoes are an important piece of equipment when it comes to traveling in the snow.  They spread out the pressure of your body weight on the surface of the snow, preventing you from sinking and making it easier to walk.  The best part about making your own snowshoes is they can be made while you’re on the move.  These won’t be the pretty, aesthetically pleasing snowshoes you might be used to seeing, but they will be functional.

Materials

To make snowshoes, the best wood comes from pine, spruce, or fir trees.  To make a pair of snowshoes, you will need two green (living) branches that are the same length and contain nice boughs on them.  The lighter weight the branch the better because a heavy branch will require more energy to move when walking.  If the branches are dead and/or dried out, they won’t have the flexibility needed and have a high chance of cracking under your weight.

You will also need some sort of cord to tie your foot to the branch.  You can use paracord or lightweight cord or rope if you have it.  If not, you can use strong grasses, pliable roots, or the rope you made from the instructions above!  Even strips of cloth will work well.

Method

You will first want to cut each branch to the proper length, which is about 3 feet long for the average adult (children and small adults can use a shorter length).  Follow these steps to make each snowshoe:

  1. Put the branch on the ground with the widest end pointing ahead of you.
  2. Tie your cord about 3-4 inches from the front end of the branch and leave an adequate and equal length on each side of the branch.
  3. Weave the length of cord on each side through some of the boughs to make sure it’s secure.
  4. Put your foot in the middle of the branch and tie the cord around it and the branch to secure your foot in place. Be sure to tie and knot the cord securely.

Check out this video to see how:

Naturally, this is just a sampling of what you can make on your own, but these items are some of the most important.  The best thing to do is use your imagination to come up with ways to make the things you know you’ll need to rely on and practice until you can make them efficiently.

On Situational Awareness

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by Megan

One of the things that is so chaotic about emergencies, including criminal acts like home invasions, riots, and other disasters like tornados, floods, power outages, or even a SHTF event, is that they are unpredictable. They often come out of nowhere and the situation is made worse by the fact that most people panic.

Okay so now we know it’s the element of surprise that catches many people off guard. Precious reaction time is lost as you try to get your bearings, comprehend what’s happening, and then decide how to react. The sooner you are alerted to possible danger; the more time you have to make decisions.

So what can you do? One of the best things to do is to train yourself to be alert even when relaxed. It’s possible to train yourself so you are always aware of what is normal and routine in any situation. Then when something out of the ordinary occurs, you will notice immediately and be prepared to react.

If you’ve seen the series of “Taken” movies with actor Liam Neeson, if you’re a familiar with the character Jason Bourne, or have seen the more recent movie, “San Andreas” starring The Rock, you have seen situational awareness in action. In San Andreas, if you watch closely, you will see The Rock scanning the area on several occasions. He makes decisions quickly, seemingly randomly, but they manage to keep everyone safe. He is using situational awareness, well and a movie script! But you get the idea.

When you have trained yourself in situational awareness, you will be able to scan the area, get your bearings, identify potential threats quickly and then use that information to make an informed decision or at least an educated guess as to the best course of action to take next.

In a natural disaster situation, like in the movie San Andreas, or in an emergency situation or SHTF event, situational awareness is what keeps you from being just another panicked victim running randomly through the streets. It’s your ace in the hole, the thing you have that those masses of people running and screaming don’t have. It helps you, and your family, to stay alive longer. So how do you get it?

Observation/Alertness Training

The first thing to practice when trying to learn situational awareness is your observation skills, what you see, what you hear, or smell. You may think that you already pay attention in public places, that you are already trained to be on alert.

But remember, you don’t know what you don’t know.  Here are some actual exercises that you and your family can practice to train yourselves:

  1. When you enter a building, any building, get in the habit of noticing where things are that will come in handy during an emergency.
  • Where are the exits?
  • Where are fire extinguishers and fire alarm pulls located?
  • Is there a public pay phone in the lobby or a landline at one of the kiosks?
  • Where are the vending machines located?
  • Do you see a first aid kit?
  • Are there any vent systems large enough to crawl through if you had to move about without being seen?

If you practice finding the above items every time you enter a building, it will become second nature to you. In an emergency, you will “instinctively” know where items are located. You won’t waste precious moments frantically searching everywhere for a first aid kit, an exit, or a fire extinguisher. Your mind will know exactly where it is located and you can either go straight to it or direct someone else to it.

  1. As you are walking down the street or even driving in your car, pay attention to what is around you. Observe the shops, the street signs, the cars, people walking. Did you pass a police station on the last block? Did that last highway exit ramp have a sign for the hospital? If you practice noticing all of this on a regular basis as you travel, when an emergency happens, you will “know” how far it is to the nearest gas stati