Personal and Family Preparedness.

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Personal and Family Preparedness.

Personally I don’t see one thing as being more important than another. There is no point in prioritising shelter if you are unable to protect & defend. But for the purpose of this article, I will start with my home & work my way through other priorities.

We have two dwellings, a main house & an old cottage. Both are situated in a forest that we own. We do have fire breaks, but this winter we will be widening those breaks because of the new threat posed by global warming. On the main house we have two 5000 gallon cement water tanks, plus another 1000 gallons in a polly tank for the garden. We have two fire pumps, one on the lower cement tank, & one down at Cattail Pond. The Cattail Pond pump can pump water up to the main house & the cottage for gardens & fire fighting. The gardens supply us with all our vegetable needs for the house & the chooks, but we also keep on hand a good supply of dried, bottled & canned foods. The chooks are kept mainly for eggs.

The main house & the cottage are both off grid & self-sustainable with grey water systems & composting toilets. The cottage has two 1000 gallon water tanks but we will be adding another larger tank soon. Heating of both houses & hot water is provided by wood burning stoves, plus a wood heater in the main house & a large open fire in the cottage. Cooking of course is also done on the wood burning stoves & the forest supplies all our firewood. 240 volt Electricity is supplied by solar panels & batteries.

We have four 4WDs, The Lada is only used on the property, but the Hilux & Triton diesels are registered for the road, as is the X-Trail SUV. If we ever have to leave here, the whole family can just fit in the Hilux & the two Tritons with all our equipment. Every family member that is able to carry has their own pack & arms. I am a primitive skills instructor & I have passed my skills on to my three sons. Arms are a mixture of modern breech-loaders, muzzle-loaders & traditional bows. Our equipment is all 18thcentury except for medical supplies & some of the water containers. We do not expect to have to leave our forest home as we have plenty of people & arms to protect what we have, but we are prepared to leave if we consider it necessary.

Individual equipment is much the same for everyone with a few exceptions including arms, types of packs, clothing. & personal items.

Equipment List:

.62 cal/20 gauge flintlock fusil. 42 inch barrel.

.70 caliber smoothbore flintlock pistol.

Gun tools and spare lock parts.

Shot pouch and contents.

Leather drawstring pouch of .60 caliber ball (in knapsack).

Powder horn.

Ball mould and swan shot mould.

5 Gunpowder wallets

Lead ladle.

Butcher/Hunting knife.

Legging knife.

Clasp knife.

Tomahawk.

Fire bag.

Tinderbox.

Belt pouch.

Fishing tackle in brass container.

Two brass snares.

Roll of brass snare wire.

Knapsack.

Scrip.

Market Wallet.

Tin Cup.

Kettle.

Water filter bags (cotton & linen bags).

Medical pouch.

Housewife.

Piece of soap and a broken ivory comb.

Dried foods in bags.

Wooden spoon.

Compass.

Whet stone.

Small metal file.

Oilcloth.

One blanket (Monmouth cap, spare wool waistcoat and wool shirt rolled inside blanket).

Two glass saddle flasks.

Length of hemp rope.

Bottle of rum.

Basic list of what I carry. This list is made up from items that we know were carried, from items that my research has shown were available, & from items that have been found, such as the brass snare wire. I am not saying every woodsrunner carried all these items, but I am saying that some woodsrunners may have carried all these items. From experimental archaeology results in historical trekking, I think the items I have chosen are a reasonable choice for any woodsrunner that is going to live in the wilderness for a year or more.

Skills: All adult male family members have these skills. The only reason the women don’t have these skills is because they have not shown any interest. Two of the women can use a gun & one of the girls has her own bow. One of our family is a trained nurse & others have skills such as cooking, clothing manufacture, weaving & gardening.

Skills List:

Fire-bow Flint & steel fire lighting

Wet weather fire lighting

fire lighting

Flintlock fire lighting

Flintlock use, service & repair

Marksmanship with either gun or bow.

Field dressing & butchering game

Blade sharpening

Tomahawk throwing

Making rawhide

Brain tanning

Primitive shelter construction

How to stay warm in winter with only one blanket

Cordage manufacture

Moccasin construction and repair

Sewing

Axe and tomahawk helve making

Fishing

Hunting

Evasion

Tracking

Reading sign

Woods lore

Navigation

Primitive trap construction & trapping

Open fire cooking

Fireplace construction

Clothing manufacture

Drying meat & other foods

Knowledge of plant tinders & preparation

Knowledge of native foods & preparation

Knowledge of native plants in the area and their uses for other than tinder and food.

Scouting/Ranging.

Basic first aid.

Finding and treating water.

General leather work.

Different Types of Bows And Their Benefits

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Bows are essential tools in hunting and games. They exist in different forms and shapes. Over the years, bows have evolved and are now made of components like carbon fiber and fiberglass with improved shooting mechanisms. There are different types of bows namely; compound bows, recurve bows, crossbows and traditional bows with their distinct benefits.

Compound bows

A compound bow is a modern form of a long bow. It is easy to use, highly versatile, adjustable, more compact, longer life and extremely powerful and thus preferred by many people. A pulley system is used to draw back the arms which are stiff when drawn by brute force. This bow is considered better than the other bows for its draw weight that is less than half of the original weight. They are made of aluminum alloy that does not distort or warp in the case of temperature, humidity, and moisture. Its developed stabilizers cause less vibration in the release of an arrow. These bows are mostly used in 3D archery, bow hunting and some in target archery.

Recurve bows

These are the only bows allowed by the Olympics and historically they are known to be used by the horsemen. Recurve bow is known for its standard draw weight, low maintenance and highly versatile. Its lower and upper tips curve away from the archer allowing it to store more elastic energy. Less power is needed to use the bow thus a tactical advantage to the user. Recurve bows with a bare bow recurve made of a string, bow limbs, a riser and an arrow rest are mostly used to train the beginners. Some archers also use them in 3D archery and field archery. One can also use them in bow hunting with higher poundage bows.

Crossbows

Modern crossbows resemble firearms with a short bow attached horizontally to the muzzle. For the archer to fire, the string is attached to the trigger mechanism and locked in place. Crossbows have the best bow sights and their shooting range is longer than all the other types of bows. This is a modified bow and arrow mostly use in 3D archery, target field and sometimes in bow hunting.

Traditional bows

A traditional bow is also known as long bow or self-bow. It is the oldest form of a bow with a long piece of wood that is either straight or curved having a bowstring fixed on each end. These bows are easy to make since their materials are locally available. They are easy to maintain, easy to carry and easy to use. It requires a very clear environment to fire a target. When used in bow hunting, it is usually at higher draw weights.

Conclusion

There is a total of four types of bows; compound bows, crossbows, traditional bows and recurve bows. They are useful in hunting, shooting the target, shooting on a course, and competitive shooting. The purpose of the course determines the type of the bow to use. For instance, a recurve bow is instrumental in field archery such as Olympic Games, compound bows in target archery and crossbow in 3D archery with their best bow sights and traditional bows in bow hunting.

Joseph Gleason is the founder of Captain Hunter. CaptainHunter.com is a site dedicated to the sport of hunting. We have a deep respect for nature and for the environment, and we therefore take the sport of hunting very seriously. Never think that you are alone in the woods again. Our goal is to share what we know with who needs it most.

How To Make A Longbow: Tricks Of The Trade

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If you like making your own weapons, or just enjoy woodworking in general, you should check out this guide to making your own longbow. This detailed guide is about 2000 words long and explains longbow making terms, lists all the tools and supplies you’ll need, and even includes several videos to show you how it’s […]

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Survival, Then and Now.

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Survival, Then and Now.

What do you think has changed  in the last 300 years regarding our survival needs? Anything? Whether it be long term wilderness living as it was for the New World settlers in the 17th and 18th centuries or whether it be a lost in the bush survival situation, I don’t see as though anything has changed. Our requirements are still the same, sensible tools, good survival provisions and primitive survival skills. Yet here we are in 2016, and people are obsessed with using dryer lint. stubby so called “bushcraft knives”, camo clothing, ferrocerium rods, pop-up nylon tents, RAT packs and freeze dried foods, special hiking boots, fuel stoves, battery operated equipment and no skills to speak of except invented ones like “battening”, making Vaseline cotton balls and other “homemade” fire starters and inventing new ways to lay a fire so they can take photos of it for their favourite forum!

300 years ago the main tools you needed to survive were the gun, the axe, the knife and flint and steel for making fire. You could even survive without the flint and steel if you had to because you could use the lock on your flintlock gun to make fire. You needed skills such as trap making and the knowledge of trapping. You packed only the essential equipment and provisions, and if you made mistakes in packing too much useless gear, then you ditched it along the track and learnt a hard lesson. Generally you asked experienced people for their advice, some ignored that advice to their own peril, and others profited by it. Today many so called survivalists and preppers also seek advice on internet forums, or at least they appear to. Most though have already made up their minds, and really all they want to do is share on the forum what they have chosen and carry. Giving correctional advice to these people is usually a waste of time, and in some cases you will be answered with rudeness and ridicule. Most of us, who have been there and done that, had a lot of experience in long term wilderness living simply ignore this and perhaps go to the persons profile and click the “Ignore” button. After all, we don’t have to put up with abuse, and the less people that survive after tshtf the better for us, less hunting and foraging competition.

For those of you that are serious about survival, and genuinely think that a shtf situation could arise in the future, here is my advice, take it or leave it: Think about your needs, think about the tasks you will be faced with if you have to survive in a wilderness situation. Choose you tools carefully. You will need a tool or tools for hunting, you will need an axe for cutting wood for shelter construction and trap making, you will need blades for skinning and butchering, camp chores and trap making, and perhaps a spare just in case. You need a hunting knife with a blade long enough to be used in self defence. You do NOT need a tool for skinning and butchering that was designed to cut wood, and you don’t want to have to cut saplings down with a knife! Each tool should have a specific purpose, don’t skimp on tools to save weight, you need the right tool for the specific job in hand.

Think sustainable, if you purchase something that is going to break, wear out or run out and you are unable to repair it, then it is just extra weight in your pack you don’t need, and it is going to compromise your safety. Carrying good sustainable gear may mean that you are carrying extra weight, and may mean that you will have to travel slower and take more breaks, but long term it will pay off.

Learn the skills you will need now. Having a good pair of hiking boots may help you initially, but what happens if they break or wear out? Do you know how to make a moccasin pattern? Do you know how to make moccasins? Do you know how to tan an animal skin to make leather? If you make a pair of moccasins now, then you will not only have learnt the skill, but you will have the moccasins and the pattern for another pair. This is the way you need to think. A modern firearm is great providing it remains functional, but what if it ceases to work? Can you fix it? How much weight in ammunition can you afford to carry? How much ammo do you use on an average hunting trip? You may shun primitive hunting tools such as the traditional bow, the crossbow and the muzzle-loading gun or rifle, but these tools have certain advantages over the modern firearm for long term wilderness living. By all means if you are travelling in company have someone carry a modern firearm, but make sure it is not the only hunting tool you are taking with you.

Keith.



What Skills Will Allow You To Do & Not Do.

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Medical Kit.

Medications.

Food bags & containers.

Water bottles or flasks.

Tools for hunting & defence.

Shelter & bedding.


What Skills Will Allow You To Do & Not Do.

The debate regarding equipment versus skills is ongoing, in my personal opinion, both are of equal importance. We are not just talking about survival; we must also be concerned with our quality of life. Yes learning primitive skills for long term survival are very important, but you have to think about what these skills can provide you with & what they can’t. For instance, if you need to cook a stew, then you need a fireproof container. You could experiment making clay vessels, you can also use animal skins & use the hot rock method. But how much easier is it to carry a metal kettle with you?

So why am I mentioning this? I am mentioning this because weight matters if you have to carry it on your back when travelling on foot. There has to be some compromise between two principles, minimum weight & maximum self-reliance. When people are asked about the hunting tools/weapons, top of the list is usually high powered breech-loading firearms. These are fine for self-defence, but how practicle are they for long term survival? The larger the caliber, the more the ammunition weighs, & the more space in your pack it takes up. We need to prioritise, is it more important to carry a lot of weight in modern ammunition? Or is it more important to carry more medical equipment & supplies, vitamin supplements, more food & more water? If we are travelling alone, we can not carry both.

If we are only carrying a modern firearm & we intend to use it for hunting & defence, then the ammunition will not last long. We can of course avoid a fire fight by keeping a low profile, & we can save on ammunition by setting up a trap line for meat. But how secure will you feel knowing that when your ammunition runs out, you will be left with nothing with which to defend yourself or procure game? Your alternatives are: carrying an air rifle, carrying a traditional bow & arrows, or carrying a flintlock muzzle-loading gun/rifle & pistol. Another alternative for those in America might be to carry a modern sidearm in combination with one of the aforementioned hunting tools, or carry a bow & a modern firearm.


Weight is the all important factor, that & sustainability. Solid form medications have a long shelf life, so we need to take advantage of this. Dry foods too have a long storage capability & it is important that we carry as much food as we can. Eventually we hope to be able to take the time to forage for edible flora & hunt & trap game, but until that time comes, we are on the move & we need to keep a low profile.

Can primitive skills supply you with medications? Yes of course they can, but finding the herbs you need will not be easy, & especially so if you are already feeling ill. We need to think about our well being, our comfort. Any item that is sustainable & will make life easier is worth carrying, within reason. Skills will enable you to make a survival bow & arrows, but if you should ever come up against someone with a gun, you may have some difficulty surviving. Something that people often fail to take into account is the shock factor of a firearm, the noise & the impact of the missile. A bow against a firearm can not deliver this.

Anyway, the purpose of this article is to make you think before you leap. Think about the equipment you are going to carry & how it will best benefit your survival physically & mentally. Learn all you can about primitive skills, & if you plan to survive on your own retreat, then think about the living skills you will need to keep things in good repair.

When it comes to transporting equipment on foot, you can use a hiking trolley, but like all forms of transport from vehicles to animals, there will always be a negative side. The tracks you will leave to be followed, the places you can’t go, the noise you will make.

Why Should You Learn Bow Hunting For Survival?

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Why Should You Learn Bow Hunting For Survival?

Reasons to Consider a Survival Bow and Arrow

Why Should You Learn Bow Hunting For Survival?

As a modern-day prepper with so many high-tech hunting tools around you, you may discard the idea of bow hunting because of its antediluvian nature. But even though when we are living in the age of technology, there is no harm in learning bow hunting for survival.

Using a bow and arrow is actually an art form of the highest kind. It may someday become the only way out when you are left with the choice to use what nature provides abundantly as a defense mechanism. Knowing bow hunting may save your life one day when all the other tools fail.

When you are stuck in a wilderness survival scenario, nothing can beat a bow and arrow set up. There are other reasons too that will make you a fan of bow hunting for survival, especially if you have any interest in primitive survival skills. Below are the five main reasons for why you should spend in purchasing a high-quality bow-and-arrow.

 

Reasons to Consider a Survival Bow and Arrow:

 

Why Should You Learn Bow Hunting For Survival?

Why Should You Learn Bow Hunting For Survival?

Via pinterest.com

High Portability

 An ordinary take-down bow only weighs a couple of pounds making it extremely light for carrying. Moreover, all you need to take down a bow is to twist some lug screws, and you are done. A bow consists of three pieces: two limbs along with a middle grip section. This further adds to the portability of the bow and arrow arrangement. You can easily pack it in your bug out bag along with some five or six arrows.

Enhanced Versatility

 With the advancement of almost everything across the world, arrows have also come a long way. Modern carbon-fiber arrows are impressively lightweight and come with a versatile tip that can accommodate various kinds of hunting tips. A good and sensible collection of different tips, for example, standard practice tips, small game stunner tips, and others allows you to use same arrows for a number of hunting games.

Cost-Effectiveness

 A simple take-down bow is easily available within a reasonable price of few hundred bucks. Most importantly, a high-quality and well-made bow will definitely last a lifetime making your investment more worthwhile. Apart from the bow, arrows are also very cost-effective. Once you polish your shooting skills, you will be able to retrieve and reuse the same arrows again and again. Crafting your own arrows with wooden dowels or natural wood is another great affordable option.

 

No Cumbersome Paperwork

 

 Legal laws and regulations are more lenient in terms of using bow and arrow. There is no cumbersome ordeal of extensive paperwork and permits as needed with guns and pellets.

Noiseless Operation

 Not only bow-and-arrows are deadly, but they are equally noiseless as well. You may come across various occasions when the silent weapon becomes seems the best.

 

Should You Choose Recurve or Compound Bow?

The most debatable topic pertaining to prepping is that which of the compound or recurve bow is more competent for a deadly scenario. There are many preppers who believe a compound bow to be inept in critical conditions because of all the complex moving parts it has. While other preppers say that a recurve bow lacks the necessary power and is thus unsuitable for a defensive tool. They think that more practice and skills are required when it comes to using a recurve bow but even then it does not have the high-end range.

Below are the main concerns relevant to both the bows.

Drawbacks of Compound Bows

The main reason many of the preppers consider the compound bow inept for their hunting purposes is its need for high maintenance. There is a finely tuned machine or a pulley system incorporated in these bows that are responsible for bearing all the pressure constantly. They withstand the force which is caused by the high draw weight of the bow. But preppers must not rely on supports. And the maintenance of this compound bow and its articulate machinery make you dependent of the archery technician. The lack of maintenance may cause you to suffer a lot when you are met with a disaster scenario.

 

 

Drawbacks of Recurve Bows

Why Should You Learn Bow Hunting For Survival?

Drawbacks of Recurve Bows

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Recurve bows require high-end practice before you can use them accurately. They also lack sighting system as seen in compound bows and thus as a prepper you will have to depend on your instinctual shooting. Only a lot of habitual practice has the potential to make you proficient with recurve bows. These bows are inexpensive, very easy to maintain and can be fabricated on your own with right tools and skills. The most important concern about recurve bows is its lighter draw weight, which makes it difficult to hunt from a tree stand. But recurve bows are a great way to learn game stalking skills, and they are highly capable of taking down big-game animals too.

Overall, recurve bows are great for small-game hunting and compound bows for large game hunting.

Use Bow as Your Defensive Tool

Whether you choose a compound bow or a recurve bow, you will need to give the most of you as a prepper using bow-and-arrow. A huge amount of skills and patience is required for bow hunting. Practicing on the range and also in the field with perseverance is a lot to ask for. But bow hunting has its own share of payoffs as well. The utter joy, immense thrill and the love of a challenge are some of the most important reasons that draw the preppers to bow and arrow. Although bow hunting needs a lot of preparations like tracking, setting up and the final flawless shot, it is worth doing all of this. It makes you a more skilled prepper who can now survive in almost any kind of wilderness.

Guns and rifles may fail in case of utmost urgency, but your skills and craftsmanship will pay you well. Bow hunting for survival also boosts your self-confidence so that you can come out safe from any kind of deadly scenario. Your hunting gears remain present around you all the time in the form of reeds and woods. You can pick them and use them as your self-made bow and arrow to escape the deadliest of animals while hunting.

 

Author Bio:

Jennifer is the founder of BuckWithBow, a great blog that focuses on helping you learn how to hunt deer with a bow. As an experienced bow hunter, she will guide you through the Do’s and Don’ts of the bowhunting world and transform you into a better hunter. Whether you are an experienced bow hunter or an absolute beginner, you will find BuckWithBow a gem!

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