Prepper Website Founder Todd Sepulveda! Host: James Walton “I Am Liberty” Listen in player below. There is something about a man alone with his mic that really makes me excited to podcast. I cannot help but enjoy the journey we take each week together. Every so often though I happen upon a guest that is … Continue reading Prepper Website Founder Todd Sepulveda!
What Kind of Prepper Are You? Though no one likes to really be labeled, the fact is we all fall into some category or another. When a disaster strikes, there is generally a lot of noise, chaos, injuries, and panic. People are running everywhere or simply standing in shock, others are trying to help, and …
One thing I constantly try to keep in mind is that not everybody is familiar with the great outdoors. Recently I had a conversation with a friend at work who told me he had a bug-out bag full of good gear, but when we talked it became evident that he didn’t have a real solid plan of what to do with it in case he actually needed to bug-out. So I thought I’d write a short guide on what do do with your bug-out kit once you actually have to step outside the door with it.
By Jarhead Survivor, a Contributing Author of SurvivalCache and SHTFBlog
Let’s assume you have the basics of what should be in a good camping kit. Remember the Survival Rule of 3’s?
1. You can survive three hours without shelter
2. You can survive three days without water
3. You can survive three weeks without food
This means you’ll need shelter, water – carrying some and with a wait to purify it, and food.
Let’s further assume that this bug-out (or camping trip) will last for three days and you want to go off grid where there is no electricity or other people in the area. We’ll also say that you’ve cleared the trouble area and now it’s time to enter the woods and set up camp.
In your pack you should have a shelter of some kind such as a tarp, tent or bivy. You’ll also need water and food, and a way to navigate such as map and compass. Don’t forget a first-aid kit! Add in some basics such as a knife, flashlight, sleeping bag, water filter, mess kit, stove, fuel, etc, and pretty soon you’ll have a pretty heavy pack with lots of gear. (See this post about keeping your pack weight down.)
Where the Rubber Meets the Road
So now it’s time to bug-out. What are the actual first steps you take? As silly as it might sound make sure you’ve got your pack(s) ready to go. When you’re satisfied that all is good go ahead and shoulder it. Make sure it fits properly and the waist and shoulder straps are cinched properly.
Check Out: The Survival Staff
Open the door and start walking.
I know that sounds a little silly, but stay with me.
Now, if this is a full scale event with millions of people trying to get out of Dodge don’t be shy about taking care of yourself. If you have a gun carry it to where you can get to it easily. Very likely that someone who hasn’t done the planning you have might decide that your stuff looks pretty good and they’d like to have it for themselves. A gun is a great way to dissuade them if comes down to it.
In The Woods
Now you’ve reached the patch of wilderness that is your destination. What do do? One of the first things you should have done is look over your map or Google Maps and get a sense of the land. Is there water in that patch of woods? If so are they lakes, streams, or rivers? Any cliffs or mountains? Swamps? Are there roads or trails? What’s out there that might benefit or hinder you? Where’s the nearest road in case you get lost? What’s the azimuth to it? The more information you have about the area you’ll be working in the better off you’ll be.
Now that we have a map and a better understanding of the area it’s time to pick a location for a camp. When I’m camping I typically look for a spot near water, but high enough not to be bothered by rising water if it rains. If possible, talk to people who’ve camped there before and ask them what the land is like and if there’s anything to watch out for.
Next to a lake or river on a high bank is usually a good spot. Spots like these will likely draw in other hikers/campers/refugees as well, so keep that in mind when selecting your camp. If you’re planning on burning wood make sure there’s plenty of dry dead wood in your area that will burn good. Standing dead is your best choice.
Watch out for “widow makers.” A widow maker is a dead tree or branch on or over where you’re setting up that might fall down during a high wind. Nothing will ruin your night like a widow maker crashing through your tent and killing you.
Once you’re happy with your area it’s time to set up your tent. (I’ll assume we’re using a tent in this scenario, although a tarp or poncho would work just as well.)
Clear the area of debris where your tent is going to be. Rocks, roots, pine cones, any of these things can make an overnight feel like a week if it gets under your sleeping mat. Once your tent is set up put the sleeping pad and sleeping bag inside, grab your axe/hatchet/saw and head out to get some firewood.
Related: Cold Weather Survival in a Blizzard
As mentioned earlier, standing dead wood is your best bet. If you find wood lying directly on the ground it’s likely to be wet, damp, and/or punky and probably won’t burn very well. Tree’s that are standing, but dead, will offer a great source of firewood once you’ve cut them down. I usually have a small saw and don’t cut anything bigger than four or five inches at the base, which makes dragging and processing the wood a little easier.
After you cut the tree down don’t cut it up yet. I like to leave it at tree length as much as possible and carry it back as one unit, then cut it up when I get back to camp. Make a good stack of wood so you’ll be able to have a fire well into the evening. If you’re depending on the fire to keep you warm gather as much wood as you think you’ll need, then add some more. An all night fire burns a lot of wood!
If I’m doing a long distance hike I’ll primarily take freeze dried foods, which aren’t bad, but then again they rarely make me jump for joy either. But anything tastes good if you’re hungry enough!
At dinner I would advise using a fire to heat your water and food and save your stove fuel for when you really need it. When I’m in the field dinner is usually my biggest meal. I like to eat, hang out around the fire, then go to bed when I get tired.
Breakfast is typically a quick affair where I’ll either something simple like GORP, or heat up water for oatmeal and instant coffee. If you’re not moving you can use a fire to heat your meal. If you’re packing up and getting ready to leave you could probably use your stove to heat the water. This isn’t a hard and fast rule though! If you’d rather have a small fire before you get going go ahead. Just make sure your fire is dead before you leave.
If you’re on the move lunch is another quick meal. When I’m walking I like to stop for lunch somewhere high if possible and enjoy whatever view I can. If you’re trying not to be seen there are all kinds of places where you can drop your pack and get your stove going. My lunches are typically quick and easy to prepare, maybe some Oodles of Noodles and an energy bar, or if I don’t want to cook some GORP or trail mix might do the trick.
When you’re moving from place to place you need to keep accurate track of your location. You can do this by using a GPS unit or a map and compass. Being old school I like the map and compass and I highly suggest that you get a little schooling on them if you don’t already know how. If you’re on a bug-out and the S has really HTF then you don’t want to rely too heavily on anything that uses batteries.
If you’re moving site to site leave yourself a little wiggle room on the amount of time you expect it will take you to get there. I’ve pulled into a site after dark on many occasions and it can suck setting up camp in the dark after a day of hiking a heavy pack through the woods. Do what you have to do. Sometimes being in the woods on a long trip sucks and you just need to suck it up.
Conserving Your Resources
When I talk about conservation I’m thinking more about conserving your supplies as much as possible. Drink from streams with a filter if possible and save the water in your canteen. (But do drink. A lot!) If you’re sitting around the fire at night there’s no need to have your headlamp or flashlight going. Keep them off and save the batteries. If it’s the right time of year you can fish and pick berries to help offset what you eat.
Bathroom Breaks at Camp
When you’re traveling a bathroom is no big deal. Just step off the trail and do your business. Bury everything when you’re done.
If you’re in camp you’ll need to designate a spot for pit stops. I usually like to walk about fifteen steps from camp, but at night you’ll realistically probably only walk a few steps away before you let fly. Unwise, but understandable, especially if it’s cold. Better for everyone if you all have the discipline to go to the prescribed bathroom spot.
Now you have a basic idea of what an off-grid camp out looks like. A bug-out to the wilderness won’t be that different except you’ll probably be more on the alert for other people while you’re out there and will probably want to practice more light and noise security.
Every camp out is different, but they all share the same attributes and in order to get good at it you need to get out there and do it. Practice, practice, practice!
If you’re nervous start by sleeping out in your backyard or at a campground. As you get more confident head out into the wilderness for longer stays.
Talk to people who’ve camped in that area and see what they have to say. Is a gun necessary due to animals? Does it rain a lot? Etc. Ask questions about where they camped and how they made out. Ok, if you have questions or comments sound off below!
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There’s a million and one things you could do this summer. Lying by the beach, hosting a BBQ in your backyard…but what will you actually gain from this, beyond a few hours of pleasure? If you want to make the best possible use of the good weather, then you need to head outside and cement your survival skills. Summer, with its fine weather, is an ideal time for those people who haven’t quite got the skills they need.
Into the Woods
Of course, to practice survival skills you’ll need to take yourself away from anything man made, but also somewhere that contains plenty of life. Regardless of where you live, you most likely have a deep, dark forest somewhere within driving distance from you. Make that your base for a week or two and you’ll return to civilization with a whole host of new skills.
Most people underrate their ability to find food when it really matters. It’s a basic skill that everybody can learn if they put the effort in; just most people don’t put the effort in. Your best options for food will be: animals, fish, and foraging plants. It can be tricky to catch animals if you’ve never done it before, but fishing is a skill that everyone should have. Take a read of fly fishing explained and get into the water: one day, it could be the difference between life and death. Also, having a book that outlines which plants can and cannot be eaten will be an invaluable resource, so make it one of the few things you take with you on your trip.
Stepping it Up
If you’ve been on a survival trip before, then summer is a good opportunity for you to step it up and real test your skills. For example, try going into the woods without a tent and see if you’re capable of making your own shelter. In an emergency, it’s unlikely you’ll have a waterproof, easy to put up tent just lying around. Similarly, you should have water with you, but see first if you could make it without access to clean water. Where would you go for water in an emergency? Would you know where to look? Before doing either of these things, let someone know where you’re going and when you’ll be back.
The clear summer nights are ideal time to learn how to navigate yourself using only stars. Once you know a few basic rules, you’ll know that it’s actually very easy. And if you have no access to any type of technology at some point in the future, you’ll still know how to get around.
At the end of your trip, have a think about what worked and what didn’t. How ready would you be, really, if something terrible happened and you needed to survive in the wild? There’ll almost be areas that you need to improve on, and they can become the focus for your next trip into the woods.
No survivalist’s kit is complete without at least one knife, and there’s always an open space in the collection for just one more perfect specimen. (I know many who refuse to leave the house without theirs: When going hiking or camping, you’ll almost always have a use for one.) A knife is the one thing you’d rather have and not need.
By Alex Coyne, a contributing author of Survival Cache & SHTFBlog
Here’s what you should know about buying, using, maintaining and owning your knives…
1. You should never buy cheap.
Aron Ralston, better known as the subject of ‘127 Hours’, was forced to amputate his own arm after getting trapped in a canyon. After the event, he stated that the knife he had bought was nothing more than a standard cheap gas-station pocket knife – dull, at that. Don’t buy cheap knives. Always buy the best you can possibly afford: Something that’s going to last you a long time, something that’s not going to rust, bend or break. You never know what you’re going to need it for, and that’s a perfect example.
2. Know what to look at for quality.
Just what makes a quality knife, then? Consider brand-name manufacturers rather than something you’ve never heard of that costs half the price – sadly, that is a good rule of thumb if you’re going to need your knife for life-and-death. Generally, buy something that comes recommended: Ask around. Try several in your hand before you buy one. You want to purchase a knife that feels right – something that’s too small or too big for your hands is going to be more of a danger and annoyance to you in the long-run.
Read Also: The SOG Pillar
3. Flashy is not always better.
A lot of people pick a flashy blade for their first (or carry-on) for no other reason than… It looks flashy. Don’t do this. Buying a knife because it looks flashy and cool assumes you’re going to have a situation come up where you’re going to want to flash it. (That, if you’ve seen anyone come out of a knife fight recently, is a terrible idea.) Buy a knife for practicality, never for show. (If you want to buy a piece simply for its beauty, that’s fine, but in the case it goes!)
4. Know the laws about knives in your state.
Laws on knives (and the concealment thereof) vary by state and country: Familiarize yourself with what you’re legally allowed to carry (especially in terms of blade length) and how you’re allowed to carry it before you take your knife out on the road. It can land you in far more trouble than it’s worth.
5. Always handle your knife with care.
Knives are sharp; if not, they should be sharpened accordingly. Handle your knife with care (always!) and teach anyone you give a knife to as a gift to do the same. There have been far too many accidents involving knives, and we don’t want to be responsible for any more. (Note: When storing knives in your pocket, make sure that it’s one that won’t fly open and stab you in the leg by accident.)
6. Knives can be an heirloom; consider a customized piece.
Customized pieces are available online from many excellent, specialized knifemakers. Consider this as a long-term goal, especially if you’re a keen collector or would like to pass something like this down.
7. There’s a knife for almost everything.
Ask yourself what you’re going to need from your knife: Is it something exclusively for preparing food when camping? Is it something for taking plant samples? Are you going diving and need a good diving knife to take along? Do you need a knife with a built-in flashlight or compass? (At this point, you might have realized that there’s a knife for almost everything and that you might need to get several to fit your needs.)
8. Learn how to sharpen a knife properly.
Sharpening your own knives is a skill that both comes with time and is best practiced on one of the cheaper knives (trust us on that!). If you don’t yet trust your own hands, have your knives sharpened professionally – it’s not as expensive as you’d imagine and it’s much better than ruining your grandad’s favourite hunting knife. For those who want to learn how to do it themselves, there are great guides on YouTube, like How to Sharpen Kitchen Knives and How to Sharpen a Knife with a Flat Stone, or you can take a look on Amazon.com for knife sharpeners.
9. What knives can and can’t do.
Never over-exert a knife: Know what kind of pressure your knife can handle. I’ve seen people try to do excessively stupid things with their knives, and well, put simply… You really shouldn’t.
10. The danger with knife-fighting.
Knife-fighting is an art unto itself, and not one that should be practiced lightly. Ever. (Open up your search engine and look up “injuries from a knife fight” if you’ve got the stomach for it; your entire perspective on knife-fighting should change right about there). If you want to learn how to fight with a knife (or take a knife off of someone in self-defense), your best bet is to take classes from a professional in the field. (Anything, and we mean anything else is bound to lead to serious injury.)
11. Knife-throwing: The cool stuff.
You might want to learn knife-throwing as a way to show off your skills, improve your dexterity or simply demonstrate that you can be bad-ass with a knife. It goes without saying that safety applies (never practice this near children, animals, other humans; anything you can hit that you shouldn’t, basically), never indoors (no matter what you’ve seen on tv) and always with proper knives (not all knives are throwing knives). There are some great lessons available on YouTube, check out these from Tim Rosanelli for starters.
Check Out: Mora Knife
12. Using knives in the kitchen, too.
Kitchen knives deserve a special mention, as you’re going to want special knives for food preparation. Chef’s knives can be expensive, but they are guaranteed to last a lifetime if taken care of properly. Again, there are several varieties so you should shop around: From stainless steel to ceramic. There are also paring knives, scaling knives and a range of others, each suiting your individual needs.
Use the comments to tell us about your favourite knife or some handy skills you’ve picked up over the years.
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It hasn’t been a question that many Western civilians have needed to ask in the past couple of decades because we have remained relatively clear of any world wars, military invasions or coups. However, whether we like it or not, the political landscape has changed a bit, what with Trump, May and Putin leading the free world.
As such, the chances of us getting caught up in a war zone type scenario are increasingly higher than they have been. Korea is testing nukes. Russia is influencing elections. Ukraine has been made unstable. And a lot more. That is why we have taken the time to give you some advice on how you can survive a war zone.
- Water and food are going to be your priority and that is because they are usually the two first things to be subjected to limitations, whether through the panic of enemy tactics. As such, stock up on non-perishable foods and learn how to effectively store water.
- Never expose yourself unnecessarily, especially during a firefight. Your best bet when it comes to surviving is to stay as concealed as possible, and that means learning how to use cover and stay low. It also means staying away from obvious and potential targets.
- Protect your home or hideout. Your defensive strategy is going to be absolutely key to your survival rates. So block the doors and board the windows as an immediate measure. Then see what other methods are available to you. If you can get hold of blast curtains, then do. Otherwise, use furniture as a means to protect yourself from any explosive damage. The more you can protect your home, the better.
- Spend the time learning about basic first-aid. Chances are that electricity will go pretty quickly in a war zone, so stock up books that will educate you on how to survive, and how to perform basic first aid. If you are with a group, then don’t keep this knowledge to yourself. This isn’t The Walking Dead, this is war, and so your vital knowledge needs to be shared.
- Know the area in which you are. It could be that you are familiar with the area, know the terrain and have a solid understanding of the different routes you can take to escape or move around. If you don’t have this knowledge, then get a map and learn all you can about your surrounding area.
- Learn how to use a firearm. This may not sit well with you, but it is better to know how to use a firearm and not need it than to need it and not know how to use it. You will want to do this without giving away your position or alerting anyone to your position. So start off with learning about the safety and how to reload. Then learn how to be comfortable holding a firearm. It could be enough to deter someone. It is also worth knowing how to maintain any firearms you have.
- Be disciplined when it comes to light and sound. At night, light and sound can travel a long way, so make sure you have a self-imposed curfew and stick to it. Another tip should be using red lights instead of natural lights, as it doesn’t travel as far. This could be a matter of life or death, so ensure there is nothing in your vicinity that shines or rattles without your permission.
This is only the basics but it gives you a good base line to start you thinking and making plans for just this sort of scenario.
Your bug out bag should contain all the necessary items to make survival possible. As a general rule, you should also have a change of clothes to withstand the changing weather. Carrying one or two pairs of socks can prove quite useful and there are multiple ways you can use your socks during an emergency. … Read more…
Preppers Food Storage List There are so many food storage articles on the net. The best part is that most of them offer some great information. This article is one of the more comprehensive articles out there. It features about 30 food items and how to incorporate them into your food storage plan. It is …
You know what they say about the best laid plans? It’s not uncommon that this also can pertain to preparedness. There are tons of great ideas across the internet that
The post 5 Devious Strategies That Will Get Preppers Killed appeared first on Ask a Prepper.
Bushcraft: must have prepper survival skills! Forrest & Kyle “The Prepping Academy” Audio in player below! Kyle and Forrest discuss bushcraft. What the heck is bushcraft? Isn’t that for survivalist and mountain men? It’s for everybody! Learning bushcraft skills should be one of the fountains stones for your preparedness pyramid. Before we get in to … Continue reading Bushcraft: must have prepper survival skills!
By Mac Slavo – SHTFplan.com
There is an inherent dilemma for most of the people living in cities.
Even those who are aware of the extremely fragile fabric of society are often stuck living urban lives. Perhaps they plan to retire to a country abode, or construct a hideaway to escape to if the need ever arises, but for now, they are stuck in the city making a living.
This is true even for the rich, but now, they have a back-up plan.
The biggest of American cities, and one of the most gridlocked, is New York City, with Manhattan and Long Island both isolated islands – trapped during emergencies from the rest of the world.
That’s why those with means, and forethought, are now chartering emergency charters to get out of the city – probably a good idea, especially if the helicopter is out of your price range.
via NY Post:
“A lot of people don’t want to wait on a line to get on a ferry, and they don’t want to worry about walking off of Manhattan, as people had to do in the past,” [Chris Dowhie, co-owner of Plan B Marine] told The Post.“They know a boat is the fastest way, and we take the worry out of maintaining and preparing and always readying your vessel,” he added.
Not only does the company promise a speedy getaway, it plans individual evacuation routes for each person, depending on their personal needs.
“You don’t have a captain. You have to drive this boat yourself,” Dowhie told The Post, adding that in a crisis, people are more concerned with helping their own families than maneuvering someone else’s escape vehicle.
The unique evacuation service costs an annual fee of $90,000 and is catered toward wealthy individuals and corporations who don’t have time to mastermind their own escape.
Clients access the boats with an individual punch-in number, and should they need to abandon it at any time, Dowhie’s company will locate it.
Interesting concept, and the fact that this has become a business model is also telling of the times.
Estimates have placed evacuation from major coastal cities at more than 24 hours:
For Long Island, where millions of New Yorkers live, it would be 20-29 hours to get off the island – during that time, people will lose their patience, run out of gas, become hungry, be denied access to medications and drugs, need emergency services, resort to crime, etc.
The one percenters have long been serious about their prepping, for they know too well about the very real dangers being constructed, and the house of cards that is ever poised to collapse.
There has been a steady rise in the upper class investment into underground bunker communities – typically decked out with furnishings and amenities that nearly compare with above-ground living.
They have also been the high profile investors buying up getaway farms in places like New Zealand or South America, and hedging with mountain retreats and fortified safe rooms.
While the amount of money they are spending remains mostly pocket change the biggest players, it represents a serious consideration of the high risk for social disruption, chaos and mega-disasters, such as the collapse of the power grid.
The good news is that while the rich may indeed be living the high life, with escape hatches built in, there are many steps that the average, and more modest, individual can also take to increase your chances of survival during modest times.
Todd Savage, who specializes in strategic relocation, says that finding balance is key. For some, a permanent move isn’t possible because of work, medical needs or family life:
Not everyone will prepare for the same threats. It’s a personal choice. Some folks think that a nuclear exchange is imminent, others a socioeconomic collapse, maybe an EMP (solar or military), or a worldwide pandemic.
Everyone who is concerned with a potential disaster should perform a personal threat assessment. It can help you decide to either relocate permanently to a rural homestead or acquire a bug-out survival property.
When it comes to elite prepping, you have to always ask yourself: ‘Do they know something that I don’t know?‘
Considering their access to power, and their insider vision of human affairs, the chances are very good that they may.
Boats and hideaway properties can be arranged at lower prices as well, or DIY. If you’re not on an island, there are likely some back roads that can save your life, and keep you out of the major chaos. Plan your escape route, with several alternate routes, that avoid the major intersections with highways, bridges and other points at which the majority of traffic is forced to flow, at a slow, grinding and dangerous pace.
Something big is coming.
This article first appeared at SHTFplan.com: Preppers Stuck In Cities: Elite Chartering “Getaway Boats in Case of Manhattan Emergency”
We live in a world where a disaster is bound to hit us sooner or later. Food storage is one of the basics of emergency preparedness and it requires proper planning. No matter how you look at things, food will always become your number one priority during a long-term disaster. Having a well-equipped pantry doesn’t … Read more…
Have you ever tried to build a shelter from natural materials in the woods? Have you ever tried to do it with no tools? Have you ever tried to do it with no tools in the winter in a foot of snow? Well I did, and here’s what happened. I went out snowshoeing with my yellow lab (Phyllis) and thought it might be cool to pretend that I was lost and needed to set up a shelter for the night. It was about noon in mid-February, which meant I had roughly four and a half hours to build a shelter and get a fire going.
By Jarhead Survivor, a Contributing Author of SurvivalCache and SHTFBlog
Since I never go into the woods without minimal equipment I can’t say that I had zero gear, but I didn’t use any of it when I built it. Here’s a little video of just how easy it is to build a shelter from natural materials in the snow with no tools. What could go wrong?
- Fall on my ass: 5 seconds
- Swear: 17 seconds
- Gather wood: 1:20
- Breaking wood: 2:51
- Constructing the shelter: 4:54
- Tipping: 6:08
- Covering the shelter: 6:53
- Digging the firepit: 7:19
- Lighting the fire: 8:24
- Chillin’ in the shelter: 9:03
Don’t Lose Heat!
Before we actually build the shelter let’s take a look at some of the objectives. First and foremost, don’t lose heat! You lose heat through the following processes:
- Convection – think blowing wind here
- Conduction – like sleeping on the cold ground or sitting on a cold rock or log
- Radiation – heat leaving your body like heat waves coming off a woodstove
- Evaporation – sweat
Building a shelter from what you have around you with no tools and keeping these rules in mind is a bit of a tradeoff. Do the best you can with what you have.
Resources and Construction
In my case, I decided to build a lean-to style shelter from what was lying around in the forest. In the section of forest I was in, there were a lot of standing dead fir trees about three to four inches at the base. I looked all over and found a good supply of what I’d need, then went back to where I’d decided to set up my camp.
Read Also: Emergency Storage of Wild Plant Foods
It was in the forest near water, although this wasn’t absolutely necessary since there was so much snow on the ground. However, it’s easier to gather water or ice then melt snow, so you exploit whatever edge you can, which is what I did in my mock survival situation. It was also close to my supply of wood and a decent amount of fir trees, which I’d need for the fir boughs.
Next I laid a small log between two trees supported by small logs I’d broken and put underneath to hold it up. This “cross beam” was about three feet off the ground. Then, I laid a couple of ribs along it to get an idea of how long they’d need to be so I could break bunch to the right length.
After this, I went and gathered what I hoped was enough wood to put the ribs on the shelter. (If you haven’t seen the video, you should check out the first minute or two. I completely fall on my back, while breaking some trees off). Hey – nobody said it was going to be easy. Next I had to break the tree length sticks to the right size. To do this, I found two trees close together. Then I stuck the wood I wanted to break between the two and pulled on it until it broke where I wanted it to. This isn’t pretty, but it gets the job done. (Again, see the video for a demonstration).
I tried to build the shelter with it’s back to the wind so as to cut down on convection. When you have a wind blowing it lowers the temperature considerably and with my shelter set up with it’s back to the wind and the fire throwing heat in, I was in pretty good shape.
Covering It Up
Once I had the ribs on it was time to cover it up. There are plenty of fir trees in that area, so I resorted to a technique called “tipping”, which means to break the tips off some fir branches in order to get what I need. This doesn’t particularly hurt the tree as long as you don’t snap off every branch. I gathered five or ten armloads and put some on the outside of the shelter and a few armloads inside as well to avoid losing heat through conduction.
Related: Ten Facts About Fire
Special note: if I were going to build this for real, I’d put a lot more pine boughs over the top and on the ground to really help with the insulation. Since this was a demo and I was getting tired I decided to go light on the insulation.
Next I broke some wood up for the fire and grabbed some small dead branches off fir and pine trees. I piled the wood up and put the tinder on top then lit it with a lighter I happened to have in my pocket. (I could have used a firesteel, but the lighter was quicker and easier).
Pretty soon I had a merry blaze going and decided to make myself some coffee. Part of that small kit I told you about is a military canteen cup, so I poured in some water and made coffee using a coffee bag (exactly like a teabag, but with coffee instead).
After Action Report
It really wasn’t that difficult making a shelter using natural materials. True, I don’t feel like I totally finished it, but it would have been easy enough if I needed. I could have also covered it up with snow to really insulate it or added more to the front to make it less of a lean-to and more of a full shelter instead. The total time to make the shelter, even in the snow, was about two to three hours. The thing about a shelter like this is you need a lot of wood to keep you warm through the night. In the area I was in, it wouldn’t have been a problem because of all the dead wood laying around, but in other areas it might not have worked out so well.
Again, you’ll need to adjust the kind of shelter you have according to the materials available. Questions? Comments? Sound off below!
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People who are serious about preparedness have a lot to be concerned about. The considerations of post-disaster survival range from food to water to hygiene to self-protection to transportation to emergency medical care.
But there is one area of what we call “prepping” that is often overlooked: personal health and fitness. If sudden disaster were to strike, it is possible that your most valuable prep might be your own body. Those who are unfit and unhealthy might be limiting their capacity for independence both now and in whatever future.
I am not a health care provider or a fitness expert. Rather, I am an ordinary citizen with a personal testimony to share. Over the past several years, my weight has crept up and my overall health has deteriorated. When my blood work reported results so high that my provider wanted me to begin a regimen of medications this past spring, I resolved to turn things around by eating better and exercising more.
Five months later, I have lost 26 pounds and am closing in on my goal weight. But it is about far more than numbers on the scale. A follow-up with the laboratory and my provider revealed drastically reduced lipids and sugars, lower blood pressure, and increased lung capacity.
For many people, the side effects of physical fitness are at least as rewarding as the actual numbers on the scale and lab report and clothing sizes. In my case, my weight loss also has resulted in more self-confidence, a higher energy level, and feeling generally more positive.
Making the time and doing the work to increase my fitness level has made me a more able homesteader. Long hours on my feet during canning season, racing to the chicken house to investigate a sudden commotion, and weekend firewood-processing marathons are less taxing now.
And if disaster strikes, I will be more capable of keeping myself and my loved ones safe. While there are a lot of other factors that are important, the ability to walk, run, climb, push and haul might be some of the most needed.
Too many of us are obese, or lead sedentary lives, or live with addiction, or suffer from conditions that are exacerbated by lifestyle. This will not serve us well in the event of a disaster, and could possibly even jeopardize the welfare of those we love.
Consider the many scenarios in which physical fitness would be crucial. People may need to run to save a child or slip quietly out of sight in a forest. They might be called upon to walk long distances, climb a tree or ladder, rappel, pound a nail, heft an axe, operate a scythe, paddle a boat, swim, carry heavy loads, and work long days — all of which are possible for unfit people but will be more challenging.
Dependence upon cigarettes, alcohol, legal or illegal drugs, or even technology could possibly result in placing oneself at risk for a fix. Nobody wants that. Nobody wants to land in a post-disaster scenario with a bad knee, poor dental health, or gout, either.
None of this is to say that everyone has complete control over their own health. Accidents happen. Diseases happen. Genetics happen. But for the rest of us, it makes sense to do all we possibly can to be fit and healthy.
Nobody is perfect, and thank goodness we do not need to be. We all struggle with issues — my family history of heart disease and diabetes and my fondness for Dr. Pepper and Little Debbie’s will always be present in my life. But facing our health challenges head-on and dealing with them now instead of later is a win-win. We win now, we win in the event of a disaster, the people around us win because we will have fewer special needs and instead will be able to help others, and we win in terms of comfort and longevity if disaster never happens. The only people who really lose out if Americans become fit and healthy are the big pharmaceutical companies.
We do not need to look like body-builders or run like track stars. But we do need to reach for our personal best and make health and fitness a central component of our prepping goals.
Do you agree or disagree? Share your thoughts in the section below:
The Next Gen of Preppers Regardless of what you may think or feel about the millennial generation, there are certain things about them that have far exceeded their parents’ generation. Information, for example. All they’ve ever known is to Google search. They have little to no concept about the Dewey decimal system, cassette players, or …
Editor’s Note: This post was contributed by Joe. If you have information for Preppers that you would like to share and possibly win a $300 Amazon Gift Card to purchase your own prepping supplies, enter today.
In a perfect world, one would like to think that when disaster strikes, people would rush to help and support each other through it. And while people certainly will, such catastrophes unfortunately sometimes bring out the worst in many people as well. And these opportunistic predator types don’t target strapping he-men either. They’ll be looking for what they think are vulnerable victims; the elderly, the disabled, and women.
While in these more enlightened times few people still think of women as the “weaker sex”, most men still retain some advantages in physical height and strength.
Fortunately, there are a number of self-defense tips and techniques that can level that playing field and allow women to protect themselves and those that they are responsible for protecting. Some of them involve an outlay of money, some involve exercise, some involve surprisingly simple preparation, but all of them should be considered now, not after the worst happens. Below are some of the more effective ones.
Get And Stay Physically Fit
The healthier and more physically fit you are in the aftermath of a crisis, the better.
You’ll be able to run from danger. You’ll be able to run and get help and possibly track down prey.
Weight lifting will allow you to…well…lift weights.
Rock climbing and ropes courses now may help you to extract yourself and assist others in escaping from collapsed buildings, scale cliffs, and climb trees.
And the great thing about physical fitness programs is that they need not involve memberships at expensive gyms. An exercise regime as simple as daily rope-jumping may have you putting others to shame when trouble strikes.
Don’t Be Afraid Of Fear
It’s a perfectly natural emotion, designed by nature to help you avoid serious problems. But there’s a fine line between breaking down into hopeless hysteria or running blindly off of the edge of a cliff, and making your fear work for you.
Don’t be crippled by fear, but do listen to that little voice warning you when going into unfamiliar areas, encountering strange groups, etc. And remember that the adrenaline produced when you enter the “flight or fight” mode actually increases your physical strength. Use it accordingly.
Every Heel Has His (Or Her) Achilles Heel
Even physically fit women may not prevail in a confrontation with a man that involves running or brute force. So don’t let him get the upper hand, but calmly and effectively go on the offensive by attacking him in areas that will hurt, with blows and kicks to the:
- Adam’s apple (that “bulge” in the throat)
- Solar plexus (between the sternum and stomach)
- Sternum (the flat bony area in the center of the chest)
Make sure that these blows are hard, and yes, they work just as effectively on women. And in situations like these, biting is absolutely fair play, and effectively painful. For some defense moves that you can try out, check out this article on The 3 Essential Self-Defense Moves.
Take A Class
There are a couple of reasons to take formal self-defense courses now.
The first one is that you will be learning in a safe and comfortable environment with professional instructors. This guarantees that you’ll be learning how to use techniques effectively, having questions answered by knowledgeable sources, and reducing the chances of injury to yourself or another student.
The second reason is that retentive learning of this nature tends to go better in a group situation, with the positive feedback, support, and hands-on learning opportunities offered by this type of classes.
Join A Shooting Club/Go To A Firing Range
Waiting until the apocalypse is nigh upon us is a bad time to become comfortable with using a firearm. It’s also possible to receive instruction at these locations to insure that you know how to effectively protect yourself with a firearm against attackers.
Other (Non-Lethal) Firearm Knowledge That All Self-Defenders Should Have
Neither the survivor party that you’re trying to protect nor the gang of slobbering attackers that you’re facing will be too impressed if your gun jams or you shoot yourself while firing it, now will they?
Survivalists or preppers who know or think that they will be handling guns should:
- Know how to load and unload various types of firearms
- Know how to clean and perform at least minor types of other maintenance on guns
- Be conversant with various parts of firearms
- Know how to correctly wear a holster, as well as correctly drawing from and returning a weapon to it
It would also be very helpful to master the not-difficult but time consuming art of reloading, or manufacturing your own ammunition.
Prevention Is The Best Cure
The most effective self-defense? Avoid putting yourself in situations where you have to use self-defense!
Avoid traveling by yourself, traveling at night, or traveling in exposed or isolated areas. Sometimes of course, one has no choice. In such situations, keep a straight, tall posture, walk quickly and purposefully, and keep weapons out and in your hand.
Use Caution In Making New “Friends”
Until you actually get to know them, all unknown parties should be treated with caution. This means maintaining a distance of a couple of meters when meeting and speaking to them. You say this seems rude? Consider this. It buys you some space if the “friend” goes into attack mode, and allows you to observe what most vulnerable body parts the attacker (see #3) is exposing to you.
It can be hard to keep a stiff upper lip during the End of Days, but remaining calm and assertive will not only help you combat depression and feelings of self-hopelessness, it will make you appear less of a “mark” to attackers and other unsavory types.
Hunker Down At Home
If the crisis is short-term or there’s no immediate danger, like Dorothy said in the Wizard Of Oz, “There’s no place like home”. Make sure that your palace is a fortress though, by pre-stocking plenty of non-perishable foods, potable water, and medical supplies. Regardless of weather, all unused doors and windows should be secured. Install an “alarm” system even if it’s just a dog, and if possible, create a well-stocked “panic area” in the home where you can flee from intruders, and they can’t follow. Better still, be cautious about admitting any strangers to your home.
What do you think, are there other important factors women need to keep in mind to be able to effectively defend themselves? If you have some thoughts on the subject, please share them with us by commenting in the comments section below. We would love to hear from you!
About the author: This article was contributed by Joe from SmokingBarrelUSA.com. Joe is a gun enthusiast that started his blog specifically to not only learn more himself, but to also share what he learned with others in the community. SmokingBarrelUSA.com aims to help promote gun safety, debunk some myths that exist today about firearms, as well as help folks to choose the right equipment to suit their specific needs.
The 10 Principles of Effective Family Survival There’s nothing more important than family in this world. No matter the differences and the hard times you faced, the survival of your family remains your main priority. If your loved ones depend on you to make it during a crisis scenario, you must bring them together. They …
Why Are So Many Conservatives, Preppers And Christians Moving To The Great Northwest?
Thousands of Americans are flocking to “Big Sky” country, and this movement has become so prominent that it has even caught the attention of the mainstream media. Within the last several weeks, both The Chicago Tribune and The Economist have done major articles on this phenomenon. From all over the country, conservatives, preppers and Bible-believing Christians are moving to Montana, Wyoming, Idaho and the eastern portions of Oregon and Washington. As you will see below, this region has become known as the “American Redoubt”, and for a variety of reasons it is considered by many survivalists to be one of the top “safe zones” for when things really start falling apart in this nation.
Many of you that are reading this article may think that it is quite strange that families are quitting their jobs, packing up everything they own and moving to the middle of nowhere, but for those that are doing it this actually make perfect sense. A recent Chicago Tribune article on this phenomenon began by profiling an ex-California couple that decided to flee the state for the friendly confines of north Idaho…
Don and Jonna Bradway recently cashed out of the stock market and invested in gold and silver. They have stockpiled food and ammunition in the event of a total economic collapse or some other calamity commonly known around here as “The End of the World As We Know It” or “SHTF” – the day something hits the fan.
The Bradways fled California, a state they said is run by “leftists and non-Constitutionalists and anti-freedom people,” and settled on several wooded acres of north Idaho five years ago. They live among like-minded conservative neighbors, host Monday night Bible study around their fire pit, hike in the mountains and fish from their boat. They melt lead to make their own bullets for sport shooting and hunting – or to defend themselves against marauders in a world-ending cataclysm.
The original article that the Chicago Tribune picked up came from the Washington Post. It was authored by Kevin Sullivan and photos were done by Matt McClain. If you would like to read the entire article you can find it right here.
And of course the Bradways are far from alone. Over the past 10 years, approximately five million people have fled the state of California. If I was living there, I would want to move out too. Once upon a time, countless numbers of young people were “California Dreaming”, but those days are long gone. At this point, the California Dream has become a California Nightmare.
Only a very small percentage of those leaving California have come up to the Great Northwest, but it is a sizable enough number to make a huge impact. Unfortunately, many of those that have come from California want to turn their new areas into another version of what they just left, and that is often firmly resisted by the locals.
But it isn’t just California – there are people streaming into the “American Redoubt” from all over the nation, and many of them are some of the finest people that you could ever hope to meet.
An article in The Economist points to a 2011 manifesto posted by James Wesley Rawles as the beginning of the “American Redoubt” movement…
In a widely read manifesto posted in 2011 on his survivalblog.com, Mr Rawles, a former army intelligence officer, urged libertarian-leaning Christians and Jews to move to Idaho, Montana, Wyoming and a strip of eastern Oregon and Washington states, a haven he called the “American Redoubt”.
Thousands of families have answered the call, moving to what Mr Rawles calls America’s last big frontier and most easily defendable terrain. Were hordes of thirsty, hungry, panicked Americans to stream out of cities after, say, the collapse of the national grid, few looters would reach the mostly mountainous, forested and, in winter, bitterly cold Redoubt. Big cities are too far away. But the movement is driven by more than doomsday “redoubters”, eager to homestead on land with lots of water, fish, and big game nearby. The idea is also to bring in enough strongly conservative voters to keep out the regulatory creep smothering liberty in places like California, a state many redoubters disdainfully refer to as “the C-word”.
Who wouldn’t want to live where the air is clear, the water is clean and the sky is actually brilliantly blue and not the washed out grayish blue that you get in most major cities?
And just having some breathing space is reason enough for some people to move to the Great Northwest. If you can get at least a few acres, you will quickly discover the joy of not having neighbors crammed in around you on every side.
Others wish to move to an area with a low population density for more practical reasons. As the New York Times recently reported, crime is rising in large cities all over America…
Murder rates rose significantly in 25 of the nation’s 100 largest cities last year, according to an analysis by The New York Times of new data compiled from individual police departments.
The findings confirm a trend that was tracked recently in a study published by the National Institute of Justice. “The homicide increase in the nation’s large cities was real and nearly unprecedented,” wrote the study’s author, Richard Rosenfeld, a criminology professor at the University of Missouri-St. Louis who explored homicide data in 56 large American cities.
Sadly, this is just the beginning. The chaos that we have seen in Dallas, Baton Rouge, Milwaukee, Ferguson, Baltimore, Chicago and elsewhere is going to get much worse. As the economy continues to unravel, we are going to see civil unrest on a scale that none of us have ever seen before. When that time comes, those that have moved to the middle of nowhere will be very thankful that they got out while the getting was good.
Over the last several years, my wife and I have met countless numbers of people that have moved up to the Great Northwest. All of their stories are different, but there is one common theme that we have noticed.
In the vast majority of cases, families tell us that they moved to the Great Northwest because they felt that God was calling them to do so. Individuals from many different churches and denominations have all felt the same call, and that creates a sort of kinship that is quite unusual these days.
Something big is happening in the Great Northwest. If you have never been up here, you might want to check it out some time.
And once you get here, you may never want to go home ever again.
Source : endoftheamericandream.com
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By Mac Slavo – SHTFplan.com
It certainly isn’t much, but when you have nothing else, it could be all you need.
In many emergencies, bugging out may not be the best option. Certainly it is not the best choice for every SHTF situation.
However, there may be situations where you need to leave your home or dwelling, get out of the city while you can, and lay low until/if sense ever returns to society.
You Tuber Kevin Coy shows you what may be the lowest cost, least effort way to build a viable survival shelter – which could also have uses for hunting, camping, play, etc.
He’s calling it a “micro-homestead.”
For the millions of Americans who can barely make it to the next paycheck, much less invest in high priced gear, supplies and stocks, it may be much better than nothing at all.
Here’s the set-up he came up with:
Of course, there are many other options, especially for those who have the means to purchase, build and develop more ideal structures and set-ups.
However, at 8×8, this building could likely be built without permit or on-grid approval in most areas, and could at least serve as a temporary structure until your dream getaway is ready to go!
Prepping requires time, energy, mental and physical effort and especially the mindset to plan ahead, make sacrifices in the “now” and put valuable resources towards insurance for the future. Many will contemplate taking action, but fewer still will actually be ready when the SHTF.
But the first step in this direction may prove to be the most important one you ever make…
This article first appeared at SHTFplan.com: “Micro-Homestead” This Modest Survival Shelter Could Save Your Life When It’s Time to Bug Out
(Natural News) While no one knows what life is going to throw at us, it is safe to say that it won’t hurt to be prepared for an emergency, disaster, or SHTF (S**t Hits The Fan) scenario. According to Back Door Survival, some three million Americans, or 1 percent of the total population, are making detailed plans and taking measures to prepare themselves for a major catastrophic event.
Many people still believe governments will step in when disaster strikes. However, when we look back at the horrible scenarios during Katrina and Super-storm Sandy, we know that that isn’t going to happen. Those affected had to wait days for aid or face hour-long lines to get some water. It has become apparent that the government isn’t prepared to handle massive rescue operations, nor can they provide for everybody during a disaster. (RELATED: Read more survival news at Survival.news.)
Whether it’s another economic collapse, natural disaster, or the end of the world, preparing yourself for opportunities so that you can take advantage of them when things turn for the worst are paramount during these uncertain times. As the world continues to spin out of control and people start to lose their confidence in governments it is very likely the number of preppers will grow in the coming years.
Survival of the fittest
Being prepared for an emergency is as simple as planning ahead. However, what many people often forget is that prepping is more than just stocking up on survival essentials. If you are going to take prepping serious, it is also time to start working on your health and fitness level.
Should the worst happen, chances are your life and environment aren’t going to look the same. In a world that has erupted into chaos, life will become more physically demanding. You might have to run, jump, climb, and fight your way through out-of-control situations. However, if you are out of shape or in bad health, chances of surviving out there can be pretty slim.
Filed under: Prepping
“Off Grid” Grumpy with a smile! Host: Glen aka “Gman” For the first time in over 5 years Gman picks up the mic. With a lot to unload on this show, topics include what is it truly like to live “off grid”? Rants and raves on several prepper related topics will be on the agenda. The … Continue reading Gman “Off Grid” Grumpy with a smile!
Going Off The Grid By Gary Collins First Thoughts
This week I got my hands on my friend Gary Collings New book, Going Off The Grid. Unlike most of my u
Unlike most of my unboxing videos, I wasn’t sent this book. You always want to support your friends so I bought this copy as soon as It was available.
Like many of us, Gary got the bug to live a simpler life. And luckily for us, he has documented the whole process.
In Going Off The Grid: The How-To Book Of Simply Living and Happiness, he provides a step-by-step guide for how to find a private piece of land and build a self-sustaining home.
This doesn’t come from research alone but from experience. Gary has been building an off-grid home in northeast Washington state.
You can watch some of the trials and tribulations on his Youtube channel.
Learning from others troubles can save you time and money. And from honest upfront people.
If you watch many of the DIY tv shows you will have an unrealistic view of the process. Building an off grid home takes a lot of time and effort.
The reward is worth it, though.
So if you are thinking about living a simpler less hectic lifestyle this is the book for you. Pick it up now before you need the info in here.
Are you off the Grid? Wanting To Be? Let me know about your plans in the comments!
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The post Going Off The Grid By Gary Collins First Thoughts Video appeared first on Survival Punk.
Ever wondered what makes the best Just In Case locations, for when the SHTF and you need somewhere away from all the inevitable trouble that will start happening? If so, you’re in the right place. We’re going to go through a few of the vital things you need to consider when choosing the location of your bolt hole.
It’s a critical decision that you need to get right now, as it will be too late after the event. All your preparation, investment, and work in build the perfect Just In Case place will be for nothing if you a) can’t get there and b) choose the wrong location. Let’s take a look at everything you need to know.
When a national emergency or worst case scenario occurs, you can bet on a few things; one of which is, the authorities will set up roadblocks and close major road arteries. And that’s going to cause anyone wanting to travel a lot of trouble just a few hours after the event. So your bolt hole’s ideal location has to be somewhere close to your current home – a place you can access within a few hours. Not only will it help you avoid roadblocks, but the smaller distance will reduce the number of potential incidents that you will encounter along the way.
Within walking distance
Ideally, you will want to choose a place that you can walk to. Within five days is your best bet – and given you will only be able to walk a maximum of 12 miles a day, that means your bolt home should be within 60 miles. Of course, the route you take will also be critical – are there enough places along the way to keep out of harm’s way? You should already know how to build a survival shelter, of course, but you’ll also need to have somewhere safe to set up at the end of every day.
Finding a location with a natural supply of water is essential, and will save you a lot of work. Whether you are buying land to build a survival hut or plan to use public land, make sure you are within a reasonable distance of a natural spring, river, or lake. Not only is water vital for hydration, but you can also use it for sanitary purposes and power – all of which are going to increase your chances of survival.
Finally, the sad truth is that in the event of a critical national emergency, there will be people out there willing to take whatever they find on their own – including your survival home. Therefore, the better hidden your Just in Case place, the less likely it is someone will see it. Avoid areas that are near well-travelled routes, and the more challenging it is to get to your location, the fewer people will find it. Don’t forget; it’s not just about blending your hut in with its surroundings. You’ll also need to find somewhere that hides much of the smoke and light from fires or smells from food.
A few years ago, a close friend told me that I should try growing potatoes in straw. He pointed out that growing potatoes in straw or hay is much easier that planting them in dirt. Since I’m always trying to work smart, easier sounded just about right for me. Growing potatoes in straw is a … Read more…
6 Ways to Avoid Being Herded into a FEMA Camp Having everything you own reduced to a numbered cot in a FEMA camp is not how you want to find yourself in an emergency. It is not only a terrible position to find yourself in, but it could also be a dangerous one. The camps are meant …
If you’re a dedicated prepper, then you’ll understand the importance of keeping your belongings safe. When disaster strikes and everyone’s survival instincts kick in, you’d be lucky if you don’t run into looters and hooligans who resort to stealing from others. When we’re in a nasty situation, it really is survival of the fittest and if you can’t hide your belongings and most important pieces of gear safely, then you’re going to be vulnerable and it’ll only take a single night for your survival chances to turn from decent to grim.
To help you survive the threat of thieves and looters, here are a couple of handy tips that you can employ right now to keep you, your family and your friends safe.
A sturdy fence around your home is the first line of defence from looters. Combined with CCTV and traps, a fence can not only protect an area, but it can also deter people from wanting to try and steal your belongings. The more fierce looking your surroundings, the more likely people will stay clear from your place to loot you. However, it’s good to keep in mind that a fence will be your first line of defence because it is the most easily penetrated. Dedicated looters will be able to cut through the fence with ease, and agile climbers will easily be able to vault over the fence or climb over it. This means you shouldn’t spend too much of your money on fencing, just enough so it surrounds your home and deters intruders.
Your most valuable possessions should be kept in a safe box or a disguised storage container. The Safe Depot has plenty of good examples of this. They’ve turned everyday essentials such as water bottles and cans into sneaky storage solutions for small belongings and bits of equipment, but you can also invest in a large safe to store things like weapons and money. A smaller safe box that you can carry around with you is a good place to store everyday essentials such as a flip knife, multi-tool and rations.
Shutters for Windows and Doors
Full lockdown of your home is ideal when it comes to avoiding looters and hooligans. Shutters can often buy you enough time to fend off thieves, and in some cases, if the shutters are strong enough it can make your home virtually impenetrable. This is an excellent long-term solution that will not only protect your home from looters, but also from natural disasters such as extreme gales. Shutters can be installed for relatively low prices, but you need to keep in mind the quality of the metal itself. The heavier it is, the sturdier it will be but it will also be hard to maintain.
Locks and Doors
In the event that your shutters have failed, you need to consider falling back to a defensive location that houses all of your supplies. In this case, a strong metal door is a great way to fend off attackers and also make your supplies almost impossible to steal unless the intruders have the key. Sturdy locks are also great for when your supplies are housed outside of your home so that you can keep all of your prepped supplies safe during the night.
This article published by The Survival Place Blog: Keep Your Belongings and Supplies Safe from Looters
Looking for a way to use up surplus flour, or make a cheap trail food or durable survival ration? One answer may be hardtack, a baked, unleavened wheat cracker. As a survival food, hardtack has a proven track record.
by Leon Pantenburg
Vicksburg, MS: My gray-clad brothers-in-arms and I hunkered down to eat. In the morning, we would do battle with those “heathen Yankee horde” Civil War re-enactors at Champions Hill, between Jackson and Vicksburg, Mississippi.
I was “under cover” on assignment for the Vicksburg Post to photograph the battle, one of the biggest re-enactments of the year. Except for the Nikon safely hidden in my haversack, my gear, weapons and accouterments were authentic in every way.
Since I was working for the Post, I had to represent the home team and be a Confederate. (This probably caused a minor earth tremor in Ruthven, Iowa, as my great-great-grandfather, James Hallowell, 92th Illinois Infantry, rolled in his grave!)
My only excuse was that like most Confederate soldiers, I had been drafted, thought “The Cause” was illogical, had no choice about being there, and wanted to go home!
I ‘d learned a lot about being a Civil War infantryman in one short, sweltering afternoon: the food was absolutely awful; our wool uniforms were too hot, and felt like you were wearing a sweatsuit: the Kepi-style caps provided no sun protection and the canteens were too small.
The Sargent, sensing my discontent (because of my constant whining and complaining) picked on me. He proclaimed to all within hearing distance that I was a “slacker,” and called me a “baboon” when I dropped my canteen during drill. As darkness fell, the re-enactors would sleep under wool blankets, not to stay warm, but to fight off mosquitoes.
But the food was the worst. Dinner was a piece of hardtack, a fatty piece of bacon toasted on a bayonet over a campfire; horrible boiled coffee brewed in my tin cup and a wormy-looking apple. After eating my meager meal, I was ready to either desert or form a raiding party to attack the Yankees and get some real food!
Hardtack is one of the original trail and emergency foods, and it is worth considering if you are a prepper or are interested in wilderness or urban survival.
The advantage is that hardtack is easy to make, transports easily and will last a reasonably long time if stored in appropriate containers. The disadvantage is the bland taste, and traditional toughness.
Even after yeast was discovered by the Egyptians, there was a purpose for unleavened breads. It was easy to carry and durable, so it was standard fare for hunters and warriors. Centuries later, Christopher Columbus took unleavened bread on his journeys.
Hardtack remained a staple in the New World. During the early settlement of North America, the exploration of the continent, the American Revolution, and on through the American
Civil War, armies were kept alive with hardtack. A basic concept in war is that the side that keeps its soldiers from going hungry will probably win.
Hardtack is also reasonably nutritious. Wheat flour is more than 10% protein and includes Vitamin B. During emergencies, people can live for quite a while on just bread and water. Although raw flour is hard to digest, in the form of hard bread, it is edible.
No one has determined just when, or how, during the American Civil War, hard bread began to be referred to as hardtack. Apparently, it was first called hardtack by the Union Army of the Potomac; although the name spread to other units, it was generally referred to as hard bread by the armies of the West.
Regardless of the time frame, if you’re a history buff, prepper or hard-core survivalist, you should consider including hardtack in your emergency food supplies or survival kit. A guaranteed conversation starter at any campfire, campout or outdoor event, hardtack can have a useful place in today’s survival kit.
(It only takes a few additional ingredients to turbocharge the nutritional value of hardtack. To each cup of flour in the recipe, add one tablespoon of soy flour, one teaspoon of wheat germ and one teaspoon of powdered milk. There is no difference in the taste, and these ingredients combine to make the bread a complete protein.)
There are many versions and varieties of hardtack recipes: Try some of these to start out.
- 4 cups flour (preferably whole wheat)
- 4 teaspoons salt
- Water (about 2 cups)
- Pre-heat oven to 375° F
- Makes about 10 pieces
After cutting the squares, press a pattern of four rows of four holes into each square, using a nail or other such object. Do not punch through the dough. The appearance you want is similar to that of a modern saltine cracker. Turn each square over and do the same thing to the other side.
Place the squares on an ungreased cookie sheet in the oven and bake for 30 minutes. Turn each piece over and bake for another 30 minutes. The crackers should be slightly brown on both sides.
The fresh crackers are easily broken, but as they dry, they harden and assume the consistency of fired brick.
I cup water
3 tbsp. vegetable oil
3 tbsp. honey
3 cups rye flour (or 1 1/2 cups rye & 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour)
1 1/2 tbsp. brewer’s yeast (optional)
1/4 tsp. salt
Mix liquids together. In a separate bowl, mix dry ingredients. Combine the mixtures, stirring to moisten throughout. Form a ball. On a floured surface, flatten the dough, and roll out thinly. Cut into squares and prick each cracker with the tines of a fork a couple of times. Transfer to lightly greased baking sheets. Bake at 425° F for around 8 minutes, checking to be sure not to over-brown. It is best served warm.
Mix: two cups of all-purpose flour and a half teaspoon of salt. Use more salt for authenticity. Mix by hand. Add a teaspoon of shortening and a half cup of water, stirred in a little at a time to form a very stiff dough. Beat the dough to a half inch thickness with a clean top mallet or rifle butt. Fold the sheet of dough into six layers. Continue to beat and to fold the dough a half dozen times until it is elastic. Roll the dough out to a half-inch thickness before cutting it with a floured biscuit cutter or bayonet. Bake for about a half hour in a 325° F oven.
The basic ingredients are flour, salt and water. General directions are also similar: Dissolve the salt in water and work it into flour using your hands. The dough should be firm and pliable but not sticky or dry. Flatten the dough onto a cookie sheet to about 1/4 inch thick, and cut into squares 3 inches by 3 inches. Pierce each square with 16 holes about ½ inch apart. Bake in oven until edges are brown or dough is hard.
Preheat the oven to 400° F For each cup of flour add 1 teaspoon of salt. Mix salt and flour with just enough water to bind. Bake 20-25 minutes. The longer you bake the hardtack, the more authentic it will appear.
A Sailor’s Diet
- 2 1/2 cups old-fashioned or quick oats.
- 3 cups unbleached flour.
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt.
- 1 teaspoon baking soda.
In a separate container, mix:
- 1 1/2 cups buttermilk.
- 3 tablespoons honey.
- 1/2 cup melted bacon drippings or shortening.
Combine the two sets of ingredients. When the dough is thoroughly mixed, roll it out on a floured board to a thickness of about a quarter inch. Cut out circles of dough with a large drinking glass dipped in flour and put them on a lightly greased cookie sheet. Bake for about 5 1/2 minutes at 450° F.
Let the hardtack cool on a wire rack before serving with jam or jelly.
Ditch Medicine Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” Audio in player below! This episode is all about “ditch medicine”. Ditch medicine makes due with what you have on hand. The idea is to stay alive (or keep someone else alive) with whatever is available, until you reach help or help finds you. Sometimes this includes herbs, … Continue reading Ditch Medicine with The Herbal Prepper!
How To Build A Semi-Permanent Family Shelter Shelter is one of the most important things you need to know how to make in an emergency situation. This awesome, family size shelter is just a large “debris shelter” for all intense and purposes but with the added protection from the rain because of the tarp or …
28 Innovative Ways To Upcycle Old T-shirts I don’t know about you guys, but I have probably a good 30 old T-shirts laying around the house that i tell my wife to keep and not throw away because we could use them if the power goes out to keep warm. After seeing this tutorial I …
The world is no longer a predictable place. There are a lot of things that can go wrong and a lot of reasons why they might. There is an uncertain political landscape, natural disaster, the possibility of super-flue’s becoming too much for antibiotics, global warming and terrorism (in whatever form that may come in). And we haven’t even mentioned the possibility of a zombie outbreak, which may be unlikely but doesn’t mean it isn’t entirely impossible. But as far apart as these threats may be from one another, there is one common interest that links them all: the need for a survival strategy. So, here is a list of things you should prepare.
- Escape Route
Don’t just rely on one option. Have a Plan A, Plan B, Plan C and D,E,F if possible. This requires a lot of consideration. You’ll need to consider what transport will be available (given a lot of public services won’t be operating anymore). Will it be a car or a truck, or a boat, or maybe you have a plane tucked away. We recommend a boat (if you live near a river, lake or sea) or a economic 4×4 if you live on land. The other thing to remember is not to take major roads. These will be everyone’s first thought, so plan an alternative route that doesn’t rely on main roads. Oh, and take a handheld GPS with you.
- Your Pack
These are also called ‘Bug Out Bags’ and are becoming increasingly popular, you know, just in case. You never know when an earthquake may hit, or a flood, or riots, or zombies; so have a bug out bag prepared and left near an exit from your home or in your car or at work. Somewhere you can grab it easily as you go to leave. When it comes to rules, make sure your survival pack is easy and comfortable to carry. Make sure its contents are simple. Make sure everything in their is needed, no luxuries. Make sure the contents allow you to become totally self-sufficient. And plan for how long you want your back to last you, for example 72 to 96 hours will be great. Click here to see what we’re talking about.
- Food and Water
It is crucial you take into consideration routes that take you to or near a natural source of clean water, such as a river or lake. These will allow you to replenish your supplies of water, which will be critical in your attempts to survive. It could also be a good idea to make sure you know where certain crop farms are, especially things like potato farms. Being able to collect a food supply of slow-release energy will help your bid.
- Choose Your Destination
This shouldn’t be one single point, but a selection of options. Options are going to be your best friend. The other thing to consider is having options in multiple different directions. There is no point in having two options both in the same town, and on the same street. Tips to consider are once again local water supplies, food supplies, vegetation and minimally populated areas. If you need to lock down for a long time, consider places like supermarkets where the security is strong and supplies are plentiful, including any first aid supplies you may need.
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5 Prepping Mistakes to Avoid I found a great article over at prepforshtf.com that goes over 5 prepping mistakes to avoid. We all make mistakes and I will be the first one to admit I have made many in my prepping journey. By making mistakes you learn from them and become a better prepper! The article …
They say that every survival scenario defines a case of survival of the fittest. You might think you can make it, regardless of what the world throws at you, but what if you’re not alone? If you have loved ones depending on you, family survival becomes your main priority. That being said, sometimes a group … Read more…
How To Stop Invasive Plants From Taking Over Your Garden If you love lilies and black-eyed Susans, but hate the way they’re taking over your garden and choking out other plants, here’s what you can do: Many plants multiply by dropping seeds and by sending out roots that establish new plants. A layer of mulch will prevent the …
The post How To Stop Invasive Plants From Taking Over Your Garden appeared first on SHTF & Prepping Central.
If you find yourself in a survival situation in the woods, you’re basically standing in a goldmine of potential resources, all of which are literally at your fingertips along the trunks of nearby trees. Knowing just how versatile tree bark can be might just save your life.
Tree bark, specifically long strips of inner bark, can be wrapped or braided together to create durable and flexible cordage quickly. Simply cut away the flaky outer bark from a section of the tree, and then begin to peel the inner bark away in long strips. Don’t remove more than one-fourth of the bark around the tree, or the tree might not be able to survive. Longer cuts top to bottom are better than wider cuts going further around the tree.
Good tree species to try include cedar, aspen, basswood/linden, maple or willow.
Path of the Prepper The “Path of the Prepper” demonstrates that we become better through the mentorship of others and that in turn, we mentor those who are walking in our previous footsteps. I love this little article, after reading it it makes complete sense. Thats why I do my pages and website. I love …
12 Cheap Ways to Become a Better Prepper Prepping seems to ask more from your wallet every day. If you don’t have money to convert your grid to solar, it doesn’t mean you have to just sit on your hands. If you don’t have the resources to get started with rain barrel water collection, you don’t …
There are pieces of emergency gear that preppers and survivalists simply have to have. A multi-functional, multi-powered weather radio is one of them. One of these radios should be extremely high on your “to buy” list if you do not have one now. It needs to be kept easy to access and ready to go out the door, too. Undoubtedly there are numerous such weather radios on the market and I have had two or three over the years that all eventually died. I have an old model sold by L.L.Bean that still works but the station dial is so crude it is difficult to zero in on a station with clear reception. It also eats batteries like popcorn. Enter an intuitive, energy efficient rebuttal to older inefficient radios: the LaCrosse Model 810.
This LaCrosse model has it all. In fact its features are darn near too many to mention, but here is a rundown on the essentials. First of all, the radio is small and compact. Out of the package it appears to be well made in a black matte finish in ABS plastic. The grill or speaker front is silver matte chromed. Had it been bright chrome, it could have been used as a signal function. The ‘control’ panel is centered on the front with simple, intuitive buttons to manage all the radio’s functions.
The LaCrosse Model 810
To begin activation of the LaCrosse 810, pull the battery seal out of the back to activate the LIR123A recharge battery to initially power up the unit. Backup power sources also include a built-in solar panel on top that can recharge the radio in 10-12 hours of sunlight. Also available is a hand crank on the back to recharge the unit. About one minute of cranking gives 30 minutes of radio juice to hear anything that is being broadcasted.
Related: Surviving Alone
A red charging crank rate light will shine as you crank. It will turn green when fully charged. As you crank, you can get into a sort of rhythm, but one minute of cranking seems an eternity. It occurred to me during the process what a great job for the kids to do.
The radio itself can be set to AM-FM for standard stations for music, news, and local weather. One more button push switches the radio to the NOAA weather bands for fully detailed weather reports from an official government weather source. The LaCrosse 810 picks up seven weather band frequencies, so something should be available and live no matter where you are.
Besides the more or less regular features of a weather radio, the 810 unit also has a built-in LED flashlight with focused fresnal lens, a blue back light flashes red during weather alerts around the digital read out panel, a digital station tuner, volume buttons, and a digital clock reading AM-PM time readouts. There are two stainless steel bars on the ends of the front panel which go through the case to reinforce the internal framework of the radio to make it more durable. On the side is a telescoping antenna that can be pulled out and rotated to isolate the best radio reception. There is also a 3.5 mm earphone jack if you want to listen via headphones.
Read Also: Survival Radio: What Will Work
Also built into this unit is a mini-USB port that can be used to charge the radio via a computer or any other USB power source. Users can also utilize the hand crank feature to charge a phone or other external mobile device. The LaCrosse NOAA Weather Radio is very simple to self-use, but directions are printed on the bottom of the radio in case the paper instructions become lost. The included directions come printed in three languages, English, Spanish, and French. I guess the Russians will have to hack in.
As a final footnote, I plan to find some kind of soft-sided slip case or bag to store the LaCrosse radio to offer extra shock protection and safety from any outside elements. For now the radio sits on my work desk ready for the next weather event or to listen to talk radio or music. The LaCrosse 810 retails for just under $50 and is well worth the investment.
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Prepper Zen: The Importance of Mindfulness in Prepping Any disaster, emergency, or SHTF scenario is filled with all sorts of extra stress. How you manage the stress can be the difference between life and death. Simple tactics that are over a thousand years old can be used to help center your mind back on the …
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Prepping for Climate Change: The Effects on the US One of our new writers believes the climate change threat is real, and on our doorstep. What do you think? Does it hurt for a prepper to be prepared for the worst case situation, regardless if climate change is happening now? Let’s do a quick poll: …
The post Prepping for Climate Change: The Effects on the US appeared first on SHTF & Prepping Central.
How Much Should You Plant In Your Garden To Provide A Year’s Worth Of Food? Not long ago, people had to think about how much to grow for the year. They had to plan ahead, save seeds, plant enough for their family and preserve enough to survive over the winter months! It wasn’t just a hobby. It didn’t take …
The post How Much Should You Plant In Your Garden To Provide A Year’s Worth Of Food? appeared first on SHTF & Prepping Central.
Some preppers and survivalists might scoff at such an idea. After all, beyond the initial 72 or so hours of a bug out scenario, most would think you’d be surviving out of more permanent supply sources than another bag or storage box. Well, you might be, or in some cases, you might not be. SHTF happens. The idea of a secondary supply bag then may not seem like such a bad or farfetched idea.
By Dr. John J. Woods, a contributing author to SHTFBlog & Survival Cache
Every bug out plan however perfectly executed may not pan out exactly as planned. You may have cached out a perfect bug out hiding location, a camping spot, another shelter at a long range destination or other hold over site until calm returns, or a new lifestyle starts. But what if you don’t make that back up site right away or at all?
Related: 10 Bug Out Bag Essentials
What if there are delays or outright changes in the plan altogether? What will you do if roadblocks hinder your progress or throw you off on an entirely new route, one you have not practiced or are even familiar with. Suppose riots, armed threats or searches deter you? If any of that happens or more, you’ll need additional survival provisions to survive.
Defining Long Term
This is obviously the hard part. During any kind of a SHTF, time frames simply cannot be nailed down, or likely even predicted. Everything is in flux, and I mean everything. If you were even successful at getting away from your primary residence, or work with family in tow if that is part of the plan, then you will spend some time in travel. You may have calculated the Bug Out trip in advance knowing how many hours or days it will take to arrive at your back up location, SHTF housing or secure site. Assuming that all works out.
As a suggested back up plan then, or a sort of supplemental Plan B, one should also prepare for the potentiality of an extended short term situation turning into something more. But what? It seems reasonable all else being equal to have emergency provisions beyond the 72-hour scenario for a minimum of two weeks at least with the possibility of a month not being unrealistic.
Back Up Bag Scenario
Let’s be truthful here, too. In most real Bug Out situations, you do not want to have to plan to abandon your vehicle to hike on foot. It could happen, but it is not a best case scenario to strike out into the woods with a one bag source of supplies. Most of us are simply not equipped physically or emotionally to hike off into the sunset to try to “live off the land.” Perhaps the top tier of survivalists could, even for a while, but it is the toughest plan to achieve.
If it comes to it, should you become detoured, plan instead a hide in place by the vehicle on an abandoned road, under a bridge, or other place where your vehicle could be parked relatively safe, and out of sight. Then plan to camp there with your vehicle and supplies as long as you have to or indeed as long as you can. Doubtless this could be a highly “iffy” situation, but it could happen.
Also Read: Knee Deep in Bug Out Vehicles
The vehicle then becomes your fort, your storage container, tent, and thus offering some measure of security and comfort. But, you’ll need the extra extended supplies, goods, and gear to make this viable until you can move on or be forced to hunker down there.
Then later, if you do reach your intended secondary site, these back up provisions can be used there in addition to what you may have already cached in place or hidden along the way. To be honest, if Plan A never works out, and Plan B’s provisions are expended, then basically all bets are off.
You may have to then shelter in place, wherever or whatever that turns out to be. It is not without consideration to think about a scrounging plan as well, but hope it does not come to that. Always remember many others are out there vying for the same limited sources of supplies or even what you have already secured.
Secondary Bag Priorities
By bag, this could be a very large zippered duffle type bag with triple or more interior space than your initial 72-hour Bug Out type bag. Ideally, it would need sturdy grab handles on each end and perhaps the sides. Loaded such a bag will be heavy. Two people will likely be needed to load it in a vehicle. But, honestly, it does not have to be a bag at all. There are some very large, and of course heavy when loaded as well, storage boxes that can withstand a lot of abuse. These can be packed, locked, and stored in a ready grab spot as a throw in bag/box. This may not be an option for every prepper, but it is a backup worthy of consideration. Again, this bag or box should be provisioned with enough additional consumables and gear to manage the two weeks to a month or even longer term.
It would seem the highest priority should go to food, and water, or additional equipment to convert questionable water sources into acceptable water, as not enough could be transported via this plan. Food supplies, also need to be light, and offering long term viability. This means a large quantity of quality pre-packaged survival foods offering maximum variety and palatability. This implies commercial survival foods, dry packages, freeze-dried, and or MRE type meals. Frankly, you can forget carrying canned goods and such as the weight and volume would be too much to handle.
Though debatable as personal choices, a good cooking mess kit should be included as meal prep would be more than munching a protein bar at this point. Minimalist type gear is important, but necessary anyway.
Add to the long term bag more gear. An axe, more tarp covers, more medical supplies especially medications needed for specific disorders that require treatment. Rope, rough wood saws, a hammer, large nails/spikes, batteries, more matches and butane lighters, candles, more flashlights, zip bags, heavy duty trash bags, work gloves, a knife or two more. Water storage bags would be helpful. Include light fishing gear and/or nets. Add whatever else you can manage. Seasonal clothing as space permits or yet another soft bag?
Add more ammo, perhaps a thousand rounds each for a primary rifle and handgun with half that for a shotgun. Add one or two more weapons if convenient. Sounds extensive? Expensive? Perhaps. You have to make that judgement on what you can handle. These goods are carried by the vehicle and stored there during travel or roadside camping, perhaps for the endurance.
The long term survival bag (LTSB) then is provided to extend the usual 72-hour initial Bug Out period as or if needed. It certainly could come in handy and also in the end supplement what has already been stocked at some alternative sheltering site. It’s just an idea, but one acted upon soon and in hand rather than merely wished for later under more dire circumstances.
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DIY Large Mobile Solar Power System I have covered a simple portable solar generator many times over the years.. They work great but what if you needed a bigger solar generator and still wanted it mobile enough to take it with you where ever you go, either camping or bugging out? I found a great …
The 2017 Prepper Community James Walton “I Am Liberty” Audio in player below! As we head into another year it’s my duty to batter you with ideas about engaging your community. I truly believe that this is the way to liberation. I think if we can build sustainable and powerful communities across the nation we … Continue reading The 2017 Prepper Community
A big part of survival and preparedness is focused on the big event – like a supervolcano erupting or an EMP attack taking down the grid. But the reality is, we’re much more likely to face those smaller, regional disasters than we are something that takes down the country.
If that’s the case, then one thing that we have to think of is what’s going to happen after the event. Much of our focus is on surviving the disaster itself and its aftermath, when the power is out and supplies are hard to come by. But there will be a time when we recover from that disaster and either return to normal or some new definition of normal.
When that time comes, we need to be ready to rebuild our lives. Not rebuild it as Grizzly Adams — living in a log cabin in the woods — but as normal people, living relatively normal lives: going to work, evenings in front of the TV, and taking the kids to their activities.
Should that happen, there’s a good chance that you’ll need to be able to prove who you are and what property is yours, in order to claim it after the fact.
Documents You Need
So the question is: What documentation do you really need? That’s a tricky one, as none of us know exactly what we’re going to face.
We also have to consider the necessity of rebuilding our lives in another location. So, we won’t only need ownership documents for our home and cars, but records of every facet of our lives.
- Personal identification — Driver’s licenses, school IDs, passports and anything else that defines you and the various members of your family.
- Current ID photos of all family members – Both headshots and full length.
- Home title – The ultimate proof of home ownership.
- Car titles and registration – For each car, truck, camper, boat, motorcycle or trailer that you own.
- Marriage license – Make sure it is a real copy and not just the decorative one that some weddings use.
- Birth certificates – For every member of the family.
- Licenses – If there is anything you’re licensed or certified to do, then you want to be able to prove it. This includes driver’s license, concealed carry permit, trade licenses, computer certifications, and anything else that you might have to prove to someone.
- School records – If you have children in school, make copies of all their records and include them. Make sure you add records of your own education, especially higher education, whether in a university or trade school.
- Health records – This one will be a bit difficult, but your doctor’s office should be able to supply you with them. Some medical records can help in identifying people. If you are taking any medications, be sure to have records of what they are and why you are taking them.
- Investment records — Copies of stocks, bonds and other negotiable securities.
- Bank records — Information on all bank accounts and online financial accounts. You might want to put that in some sort of code, so that others can’t read it easily.
- Passwords – Once again, possibly in some simple code.
- Tax records – You can be sure that the IRS, like a vampire, will survive.
- Work history – If you have to rebuild your life, that might include finding a new job.
- Contact information – We no longer learn people’s phone numbers and addresses, counting on our smart phones to remember them for us. Create a list of everyone who is important to you. You may need to find them or call them for help.
Make It Safe And Secure
Obviously, you can make paper copies of some of that, but carrying copies of all of it would require a pretty good size notebook. Fortunately, technology has come to the rescue, providing us with the compact means of carrying all of it.
I refer to the flash drive. You can put all that, and more, on a flash drive that weighs less than an ounce and easily slips into your pocket. They now have flash drives that will connect to tablets as well, with a micro USB connector on them, in addition to the regular USB connector. Those are better, especially if you are taking a tablet or smartphone along with you.
Scan everything onto your computer and make copies. It would be best to put them into a .PDF format, rather than a .JPG or other image format. Be sure to label them accordingly and create a file system on your flash drive that makes sense. If you ever need those documents, you’ll probably need to be able to find them quickly.
I’d also recommend making a second copy, either on another flash drive or on a CD. This copy should be carried by another family member, so that if one backpack is lost, you don’t lose both copies. Like everything else in survival, redundancy is important.
What would you add to our list? Do you disagree with anything? Share your thoughts in the section below:
A Beginners Guide to Prepping! If you’re just starting off in the world of prepping, welcome to the team! If you’re still contemplating whether to get on board, hopefully this will persuade you to the light. It may seem a like a daunting task to begin preparing for the worst, but if you know where … Continue reading A Beginners Guide to Prepping!
By Mac Slavo – SHTFplan.com
If you weren’t paranoid before, it may be time to start paying attention.
“They” are spying on everything you do, and are collecting information about every purchase, appliance, vehicle or place you make, do or interact with. For the first time in history, we have arrived at a time when nearly everything is chipped, and almost everything is tracked.
It really is true, and it’s no longer a conspiracy theory.
They are spying on everyone, collecting all the available data and tracking you, your family and everyone you know. All the time.
And worst of all, it does matter, it will be used against you – for revenue collection, social control, fines, fees and evidence if necessary – even if you haven’t done anything wrong. Is it any wonder why many states have made living off the grid illegal, and have attempted to get everyone on the grid?
If you don’t conform to the habits of most Americans – and harvest alternative stores of power, fuel, food, water and supplies, then your energy use and digital footprint (or lack thereof) will cast you as a suspicious anomaly, worth of investigation, seizure of goods, subject to violations and codes, and NOT off the radar.
Meanwhile, your interaction with other people will intercept data about you and your activities even if you don’t carry a smart phone or wearables.
The extremes are already here. The murder case where police have sought data from an Alexa smart device is just the beginning of what is to come:
In what may ultimately lead to a precedent setting case and/or landmark court ruling, police in Arkansas have demanded that Amazon provide them with recordings made by an Amazon Echo device that was located in the home of murder suspect… (source)
Many other attempts have been made to microchip people, while the cashless grid has already found widespread acceptance.
Former CIA director David Petraeus admitted to the tech community that the Internet of Things (IoT) was about to become one of the greatest assets in the spy community – as an endless pool of data could turn the tables on any ‘persons of interest.’
In other words, maybe you. As Wired reported in 2012:
More and more personal and household devices are connecting to the internet, from your television to your car navigation systems to your light switches. CIA Director David Petraeus cannot wait to spy on you through them.
Earlier this month, Petraeus mused about the emergence of an “Internet of Things” — that is, wired devices — at a summit for In-Q-Tel, the CIA’s venture capital firm. […]
All those new online devices are a treasure trove of data if you’re a “person of interest” to the spy community. Once upon a time, spies had to place a bug in your chandelier to hear your conversation. With the rise of the “smart home,” you’d be sending tagged, geolocated data that a spy agency can intercept in real time …
“Items of interest will be located, identified, monitored, and remotely controlled through technologies such as radio-frequency identification, sensor networks, tiny embedded servers, and energy harvesters — all connected to the next-generation internet using abundant, low-cost, and high-power computing,” Petraeus said.
More and more of these smart chips are being integrated into absolutely every imaginable device.
Unless you are investing in vintage equipment, you will be buying into this system, even with basic appliances
An alarming report in 2013 highlighted concerns over some Chinese-made irons and tea kettles that included wireless spy chips… for purposes unknown, since these devices are not “smart” gadgets with computer interfaces and high-dollar functionality.
To this date, Qualcomm has shipped over a billion of Internet of Things (IoT) chipsets, the San Diego-based semiconductor manufacturer revealed on Tuesday. While speaking at the CES Unveiled press event yesterday, the company’s Senior Vice President of Product Management Raj Talluri said that the firm is already serving all segments of the IoT industry, from smart TVs and thermostats to connected speakers, wearables, and home assistants. Talluri specifically pointed out that smartphones and tablets aren’t included in the one billion figure.
Qualcomm’s impressive shipment numbers are mostly driven by the company’s presence in the wearable industry… numerous consumer electronics manufacturers are already implementing the cutting edge Snapdragon 835 chipset into their products…
As this chart demonstrates, the Internet of Things (IoT) will literally incorporate devices throughout consumer & home, retail, security and surveillance, IT and networking, transportation and industry, healthcare, energy
Click for larger image, via Beecham Research
Notice that “Elderly and Children” are considered “things” in these digital tracking grid which otherwise incorporates refrigerators, stoves and smart appliances to share data and “spy” on individuals in their own homes.
And people are just another track and traceable part of the system.
It is absolute confirmation that “mark of the beast” technology is coming into full force – whether or not they will succeed in implanting microchips into people remains to be seen, but a major attempt is in the works.
In the meantime, there is now information about every move you, or any piece of “inventory” makes inside the system.
This isn’t just hypothetical talk.
This is the society that has been built.
Good luck avoiding it. You won’t avoid these devices by accident, it will take a lot of work to remain anonymous, off the grid, and out of their grasp.
As Sargent Survival at BeSurvival.com explains, getting out of the system is no easy task. Any serious attempt to “delete” yourself from the system actually go undetected would involve some very methodical footwork.
Not impossible, but not the default by any means:
- There are 30 million plus surveillance cameras on the US, one camera for every ten Americans.
- The average American is in 200 databases.
- Putting a plan in motion to keep you from being tracked is a good idea if you want to devise a new life for yourself
- Right before you leave, change your appearance significantly
- Before you leave, terminate all of your accounts (email, bank accounts, credit cards, etc).
- Don’t terminate your social network sites as you can use these sites to provide disinformation.
- Before you leave, delete all of your computer files and get rid of your computer’s hard drive – boil; smash; run a Degausser/ electromagnetic wand
- Get rid of your cell phone or tablet as these can be easily used to track your location
- Break your normal patterns (what you eat, where you frequent, how you shop, the kind of work you do, etc).
- Completely change your lifestyle [and employment]
- Pay for everything with cash.
- Ditch your car and find a substitute; get rid of the toll pass which can track your movements
- To change your identity … petition the court to change your name legally to a new–and common–name.
- Apply for a driver’s license under your new name.
- Buy a basic pre-paid cell phone (not a smart phone). Replace the pre-paid phone frequently, about every 2 weeks.
- To get back online use a new laptop. Stay away from libraries!
- Always use a hard wire to your laptop and turn off the wi-fi; reroute your ip address so your location can’t be determined
- Be aware of the NSA spying and the ECHELON program in the US which monitors phone and computer transmissions for keywords and messages.
- There are 70+ FUSION centers in the US which coordinate surveillance and other information.
- Technology is now available to identify you by the way you walk, your facial measurements and biometrics
- It will be 7 to 10 years before your old identity drops off of databases, if ever.
- The less you interface with technology, the better off you will be.
Living off grid is a great dream, and a good principle to live by. Preparing to deal with emergencies and escape the danger zones in modern cities is essential. Using technology in this world comes with many advantages, but also some serious disadvantages.
Make sure that your use of technology is serving your purposes, and not giving you away during good times or bad.
This article first appeared at SHTFplan.com: Staying Off Grid When “Nearly Everything Is Chipped, Almost Everything Is Tracked”
Picking the best personal protection firearm is a huge question. Just for a little background, I am a firearms instructor and teach four to six classes a month on Basic and Concealed Carry/Defensive shooting. I work at a reputable “big box” store in the firearms department, and I give lectures frequently on personal protection techniques and tools. That is just small snapshot of my background to give you some insight.
In each of those scenarios, I am frequently asked what is the best personal protection gun, and the people that ask that question, usually say they’ve already gotten some information from various sources. Such as, “My friend who is a cop said I should buy this one” or “I read about this one; it looks like a good one.” or “I wanted something small I can carry in my purse or pocket” or one of the best ones: “I want a 45 because I want knock down power.” Naturally, all these have some validity, but none have any real substance.
Yes, there are lots of magazines that you can read about personal protection handguns. And there are at least a hundred websites you can read about the same topic. Many are written by well trained and highly experienced professionals, while some clearly are not. So you are presented with a dilemma. Who and what is right? Because every week the websites you read tell you about the BEST handgun on the market today, and every month the cover of your favorite gun magazine has an article about the BEST personal protection handgun on the market. This just complicates your decision making.
So let’s go back to basics. But I must say one thing before I do that with you–yes, I do have MY favorite handgun that I feel is the BEST personal protection weapon. But I feel it may be helpful for you to review the basics of choosing your personal protection handgun. Here are the characteristics I feel you should consider when choosing your next personal protection handgun. These characteristics should be researched and evaluated in this order.
One of the most important aspects of buying a handgun for personal protection is the manufacturer of your firearm. Here are my reasons why I feel this way. First and foremost, you want the best quality you can afford. This is a tool that you are buying for a time when your life or someone else’s life is in danger. You want something that is going to be very dependable, reliable, and has a reputation for high quality. If you are truly buying this weapon for personal protection, that means you are going to be shooting it frequently as you practice your shooting skills. Thus, it needs to be a firearm that can stand up to lots of shooting.
I personally look for manufacturers that have a longstanding reputation for providing handguns to the military or large government agencies. Why? Because in most cases, they do the most extensive and critical evaluations of the weapons and follow very strict rules about quality control. Secondly, in most cases, these handguns are used often and in a wide range of environments, so they know if they work when you need them or not.
This a very important aspect of buying your firearm that is related to the characteristics mentioned above. If the manufacturer is of high quality, they will most likely offer a very good warranty on their handguns. Some manufacturers offer lifetime warranties so you know they stand behind their product. Others offer warranties only for a limited time. You also want to know what modifications or ammo you that will void your warranty. Such as, will polishing the trigger void the warranty or will shooting +P ammo void the warranty? These are important factors you need to take into consideration.
This is most likely one of the most common areas of disagreement. Many like a revolver because they say it is “simple” and “easy” to use. I personally am not a fan of revolvers for two reasons. First, if something bad should happen, I want a gun I can shoot well and LOTS of bullets, and a revolver does not meet that requirement. Secondly, most revolvers have a very long and hard trigger pull. That makes it more likely you will be inaccurate with the weapon.
Read Also: The Katrina Pistol
I prefer semi-automatics for two reasons. First, in most cases, they allow you to have more bullets–two or three times as many rounds as a revolver. To me, that is very important. Secondly and equally importantly, I like the trigger pull on semiautomatics. We will go more into this below. But, having lots of bullets and being able to easily pull the trigger are two factors I find very valuable in a personal protection firearm.
This is the key physical factor of buying your personal protection handgun. I cannot stress how important this factor plays into your ability to hold, shoot and control your handgun. There are three factors in gripping a handgun– technique, weight, and size.
The first part of determining your grip on a handgun is to know HOW to grip a handgun. IF you do not know how to properly grip a handgun, you will most likely make a huge error when buying your weapon. I watch daily as people looking to buy their hand gun grip it incorrectly. I am amazed at how many salespeople do not try to help or correct the customer. Thus, LOTS of people buy a handgun without ever properly gripping it. Then they wonder why they do not like shooting their handgun and why they are not accurate with it. It all comes back to grip.
The next two components of gripping can be considered as one. Weight and size. Both play a critical role in managing a handgun, thus are very important.
First is the visual aspect of the handgun. Most people look at a handgun and on looks alone determine if it is too big. Without even holding the firearm they have already determine it is too big. Thus, they rule out very acceptable handguns on looks alone. Secondly, they want something small and light so it is easy to carry and hold. But they do not understand that the weight of the handgun correlates to the recoil, thus the lighter the weapon the more recoil; conversely, a heavier weapon reduces recoil. You want to find a handgun that might feel a little heavy in your hand at first but is very easy to grip. You should look for a gun whose grip is slim enough to allow your hand to encircle it easily, with a reasonable reach forward to the trigger while the gun is in alignment with your wrist and forearm. A gun with a short grip frame may not allow your pinky finger to get a grip on the gun, and this will make the weapon less controllable, although it may be easier to carry concealed it will be hard to shoot accurately.
The best way to address these issues is to handle numerous firearms and to understand that small is not necessarily good and slightly heavy is not necessarily bad. Once most people have the opportunity to grip numerous firearms and really get a feel for a proper grip, they soon realize that weight and size make a big difference.
I have seen so many people walk into the range or store with one concept of what they were going to buy and walk out with something totally different. These individuals then come back and say they were so glad they did not buy what they originally thought they wanted. I feel strongly this is where a good knowledgeable sales person comes into play. So when you buy you first firearms or if you are a novice buyer, make sure you ask what the sales person’s background is before you listen to their pitch. And make sure they give you a comparison of firearms to evaluate.
Trigger control is essential to accuracy. Trigger pulls can be hard, up to 15 lbs, staged, and hard to reach with your finger. Thus, it is essential that you choose a handgun with a trigger you can easily reach and comfortably pull. The harder the trigger is to reach or pull the less accurate you will be. Thus, when evaluating a handgun for personal protection, it is imperative that you have the opportunity to hold the handgun and place your finger on the trigger. Then whenever possible, you should be allowed to dry fire the weapon. That is the ONLY way to fully appreciate and evaluate the trigger pull.
What you want in a trigger pull is the following features, one that is within your fingers reach when you finger is correctly on the trigger, smooth pull with no roughness, easy, relatively short trigger stroke back, and a short trigger reset. A Short Trigger Reset (STR) means you only need to allow the trigger to release a short distance after it has fired the weapon before you are able to pull it again and fire your next shot.
Bullets have gone through tremendous improvements over the last twenty years. The weights, velocity, materials and aerodynamics of bullets are incredibly better today than they were even ten years ago. Thus, the choice of caliber is not that critical today, and calibers that were considered marginal a generation ago are often considered excellent performers with the best modern loads.
Related: Prepper Guns on a Budget
In making the choice of what caliber to buy, beware of a number of common misconceptions. First is in the area of knock down power. This term in highly misunderstood and misused. There is the misconception that a bigger bullet results in more knock down power. Recent studies have demonstrated that this term is widely incorrect.
When humans are shot with traditional bullets used for personal protection, they do not go flying through the saloon doors nor get knocked back like you see in the movies. If a human is hit in a vital area they just collapse. There are numerous videos on the internet of humans being shot and when hit with a lethal shot they just collapse. So knock down power is way over used in relation to its actual impact.
Another misconception is penetration. Most think that bigger bullets penetrate deeper and cause more damage. In actuality smaller 9mm bullets have greater penetration ability than 45 caliber bullets. Based on substantial research, the FBI has reverted back to 9mm bullets for their agents for three very important reasons. One, they penetrated further thus doing more damage. Secondly, the agents that shot 9mm weapons were more accurate than those shooting 40 and 45’s. Finally, the lethality of the shots were the same, provided that a vital area on the suspect was hit.
There are strong arguments that the 9mm cartridge (AKA 9mm Luger, 9mm Parabellum, or 9×19 mm) is the top logistical choice for a defensive handgun for most people:
- It is the least expensive of all personal protection ammo so you are more likely to practice more.
- More handguns are made in 9mm than any other caliber, so you are more likely to find a 9mm handgun that fits your hand.
- Most 9mm handguns allow for high capacity magazines, so you have lots of bullets when you need them, and many 9mm magazines even hold more ammo than the smaller 380 pistols’ magazines.
- The recoil of 9mm is easily manageable.
- The lethality is the same as larger bullets when a vital area is hit.
- More people carry 9mm that any other caliber; thus you could share ammo, if needed.
As mentioned a few times in this article, I feel strongly that I want to have as many cartridges in my gun as I can, should something go wrong. No matter how well you are trained, if a bad event occurs and you need to fire your weapon while you are running, taking cover, hiding, or avoiding getting shot, you will miss a lot.
Numerous times a day I have novice shooters tell me that they only need a gun with five or six bullets because they will hit the target in the first one or two shots. Clearly, they have not watched any videos of our heroic men and women in law enforcement in shoot-outs, nor have they watched our brave American military heroes in firefights. As good as these well trained professionals are, they still miss a lot. Not because they are unskilled– they are exceptional marksmen (and women) by any standard of training and testing. But it is exceedingly hard to hit a moving target when you are being shot at, beat up, or mugged.
So the more bullets the better. A semi-auto that uses a magazine with a staggered or double-column row of ammunition might hold 13-17 rounds of 9mm. That’s my recommendation. The brand, warranty, action style, trigger pull, grip, ammo capacity, and caliber are all the features and characteristic you want in your personal protection handgun. Each has its own importance and value in helping you chose the correct handgun for your personal use. Not all handguns are meant for everyone. You need one that fits you.
Here are some handguns that I find meet the above criteria; they are my choices in order of preference.
Manufacturer – Sig Sauer has produced handguns for many of our elite fighting forces and government agencies for a long time including but not limited to: SEALS, Secret Service, Air Marshals and numerous law enforcement agencies.
Warranty – Lifetime
Grip – Very nice and comfortable stippling, ergonomically and anatomically correct, and a great weight that allows for reduced recoil and easy handling.
Trigger Control – Excellent trigger, one of the hallmarks of this handgun, very short smooth trigger reset.
Caliber – 9mm, but the 320 is modular. The trigger and firing assembly is easily removed from the gun and barrels and frames in 380, 357 Sig and 40 can be purchased from Sig. so you get multiple caliber capability with this handgun.
Bullet Capacity: comes with two 15 rounds mags, can take 17 round mags.
Manufacturer – Ruger high quality firearms made since 1949
Warranty – Lifetime
Grip – Very ergonomic grip, nice stippling. Very good weight
Trigger Control – Good but can be a little rough
Caliber – 9mm
Bullet Capacity – Comes with two 15 rounds mags
Manufacturer — Walther is a German firearms maker that dates back to 1886. It has an excellent reputation, and its handguns have always been popular in both military and police use worldwide through the 20th century.
Warranty — Lifetime, transferable to subsequent purchasers, but only so long as that model firearm is still being produced and serviced, and is not a discontinued model.
Grip — Comfortable grip, no bigger than it has to be to allow all your fingers to fit on it, with stippling for better control and an undercut area at the base of the trigger guard.
Trigger Control — A short trigger stroke of just over a quarter-inch, with only 5.5 lbs. of pressure.
Caliber — 9mm.
Bullet Capacity — 8 rounds in the magazine (with one in the chamber, that’s 9 total)
Manufacturer – Glock was the first to make polymer-framed striker-fired guns, and it has held its place in that market for a long time. Glock has produced handguns for many military branches, elite forces, FBI, and numerous law enforcement agencies.
Warranty – Limited to one year, and with several situations where Glock disclaims any warranty responsibility. But in practice, they have been more helpful than the terms of their written warranty would require.
Grip – Nice grip good stippling, light weight.
Trigger Control – Nice trigger, my experience is that a lot people push the handgun when shooting it by not getting their finger on top of the trigger safety.
Caliber – 9mm
Bullet Capacity – Comes with two 15 round mags. Your spare magazines could be larger to hold even more, such as 17 or even 33 rounds.
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All Alone for the End of the World I’ve seen a lot of hardcore survivalists and preppers promote the lone-wolf survival scenario and I can’t help but notice a few flaws in their prepping plans. If the world around you crumbles and the law no longer applies, surviving as one is almost impossible without investing …
In the world of low-caliber rifles, the G22 Bullpup is a great choice. The rifle is accurate, sleek, and reliable. For survival applications, such a rifle may be lacking. No matter how cool the rifle, how can you expect a .22 LR to be a workhorse? This gun will never be powerful enough to bring down big game or seriously deter assailants. Even with 11 round mags and quick reloads, the G22 Bullpup simply does not have enough utility to be a contender as a survival rifle.
By Sam, a contributing author to SHTFBlog & Survival Cache
Outside of more pragmatic uses, the G22 is great. As a plinking rifle, the G22 is a wonderful choice. The gun is accurate, lightweight, and features rails for after-market customizations. For these reasons alone, the G22 is well worth adding to your armory. Whatever you do, don’t expect the G22 to bail you out in a survival situation. Unfortunately, the G22 is no longer commercially available but it can still be purchased used.
|Weight||95 oz (2.7 kg)|
|Length||28.4–29.5 in (72–75 cm)|
|Barrel length||20 in (51 cm)|
|Width||2.2 in (5.6 cm)|
|Height||8.7 in (22 cm)|
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By Mac Slavo – SHTFplan.com
How can you stay warm even in the coldest of climates if you are compelled to trek through the great wilderness around us?
There’s no way to know the exact conditions you may have to endure, or the situation that will lead way to the SHTF we have all been anticipating.
But you can be ready, and practice to hone your skills until that day comes.
Whether camping or bugging out, there are some good tips and skills for adapting for harsh winters, and these may come in handy, particularly if you live in the northern parts of the country.
On top of the appropriate warm gear, it would be wise to be able to control heat while backpacking or on the run. While it isn’t easy to do in every situation, it is possible even in a temporary structure.
One of the best strategies to use a portable, wood-burning stove designed to safely set up inside tents, with the stove exhaust exiting through a sectioned-pipe (also portable) that is designed to vent through hole in the roof of the tent or shelter.
Best of all, these stoves are relatively affordable (or you could make your own).
Check out this video via Wilderness Rocks:
Hot Tent Wood Stove Bushcraft Overnight winter survival Backpacking.
Here are some other videos on how to best handle the harsh climate of winter survival camping.
As usual, there isn’t just one right way to do it, but putting these strategies into practice will give you the opportunity to work out which methods work best for your needs.
The last thing anyone wants to do is discover they are inadequately prepared to deal with the cold once there is no turning back.
Solo Bushcraft Camp. 2 Nights in Snow – Natural Shelter, Minimal Gear.
Warmest Winter Survival Shelter – Deep In Bear Country
Bush Camp Long Term Winter Survival Shelter Construction
Whatever you do, make sure you stay out of the cold long enough to avoid getting hypothermia, or succumbing to the elements.
Surviving in this climate can be one of the most deadly settings you’ll ever encounter.
Continue reading at SHTFplan.com: Hot Tent Survival Camping: How to “Stay Warm In the Harshest Winter Climate”
How To Make Biltong – The Best Survival Food Preppers and homesteaders always need ways to preserve food for a SHTF situation or during the winter. Canning and root cellars are good options, but the more ways you know how to preserve food, the better off you’ll be when the time comes. Bioprepper has a …
For experienced preppers or survivalists, this is a no brainer, but for those just getting started down the road of preparing for worst case scenarios, this may be all new stuff. Really, it is not rocket science, but for some it could be overwhelming or intimidating. Let’s try to simplify things for you. I am amazed though at the frequency that inquiries come in about what foods to stock up for a bug in situation plan or to larder up a pantry at a secondary bug out location. Emergency foods are important. It is crucial to stock up on these materials. How long are you going to be able to sustain yourself from gathered materials?
There are plenty of choices and considerations to make with emergency foods. This is part of the challenge in prepping. If you have limited space at a bug out site, then sheer volume limitations might dictate to have these foods as a primary option instead of canned goods. You decide what works best for you.
Stock What You’ll Eat
Right now if I go through my own bug in pantry, I am going to find some items in there that either we decided we did not like or they just got shoved to the back of the drawer for one reason or the other. I see three cans of black beans. Black beans are OK, but not a favorite. If I were hungry or starving that would be different. I probably will not buy any more any time soon.
Related: Mountain House Review
So, look through your cabinets and take a poll of the family likes to decide what you eat most regularly. That is a starting place. Common sense then tells you to stock up on items that the family will consume without picky issues. Things will be stressful enough without hearing, “yuk, I don’t want that junk.” Do yourself a favor ahead of time and avoid those arguments.
Remember, too, the power grid may be down. You may lose everything in the fridge and freezer. Cook what you can of meats and such, but plan on not having fresh or frozen foods for a while.
One of the more common food stocks mistakes is going heavy on carbohydrates. You need some, but balance the pasta and such with foods high in energy sustainable proteins. These can be meats, fish, and even protein bars for in between meals or snacks.
Some or many of the prepared canned meat products are very high in fats and salt. Try to avoid those if these give you other troubles. It just goes with the territory of most canned foods these days. If you can find more healthy alternatives, then go for it. Try to balance any SHTF diet with fish such as canned tuna or salmon. These are good sources of nutrients and would be easy to prepare or easily eat in a hurry. I know there are many other options, so shop around.
I am not a nutritionist, but I know what my family and I will eat. My plan is to not add on extra stress by having to eat some foods we simply don’t like or may avoid. That would be a waste of time and money, both crucial during a SHTF event.
By all means plan to add a whole selection of vegetables to your SHTF diet. Mostly these will be canned items. If you have access to a fresh garden, then great. Variety is indeed the spice of life. Nobody wants green beans five days in a row and there is no need to do that. Selection at the grocery is wide. Beans of endless kinds, greens, corn, tomatoes, asparagus, beets, mushrooms, hominy, and so much more. It would be cheaper of course to buy by the case, but be sure to monitor the expiration dates carefully on all foods.
Fruits and Desserts
Be sure to add canned or dried fruits to your stores. Fruit can add a tremendous variety food and can be eaten almost like a dessert or snack. Select a wide variety from peaches, pineapple, apple sauce, fruit cocktail, pears, strawberries, and cherries for example. Fruits are a bonus. Think about some snacks too that have some shelf life. We like puddings and the little fruit cups as well. Some candy bars might be OK, but also have a selection of snack bars with nuts, chocolate, and caramel or whatever. Bags of hard candy make occasional special treats. Boxed crackers and cheese sandwiches can last for a while.
Quick and Easy
Sure, I like my share of the easy to pop open items that can be quickly heated or eaten right out of the can. There is a wide selection here, too. Such items include all types of pasta with or without some kind of meat, along with a tomato sauce. There is canned mac’n’cheese and other cheese concoctions. Then there are hordes of canned soups, and chili. Just shop the grocery aisles to supplement other foods with these items knowing their nutritional value is dubious, but then you likely already eat some of these items anyway now.
Canned or Pouch
If you have the space at either your bug in or out locations, then canned goods are long lasting, durable to handle, and easy to utilize. Ironically, the empty cans have many other uses as well, and the paper labels can be removed and used as fire starter materials. Make sure you have a manual can opener.
Of course the down side on cans is the weight and volume, so they are not easily transportable in an emergency. That is why pre-event stocking is good planning at home or at an alternative evacuation site. Clearly it is best to have these tasks done ahead of time for the most part. Keep rotating and resupplying as time goes on. Pouches, foil bags, and other such food containers have many advantages for storage and long term use. Rip off the top, and eat or pour into a pan for heating if you want. They are simple and most of the packaging can be consumed in a fire and not a waste dump. The overall food variety is not that great with items in this type of packaging compared to conventional cans.
Now, if you are lucky enough to have electric power that can change a lot of things, but don’t plan to count on it. That is why I skipped baking, breads, and such on purpose, but there are other cooking options, too. Again, variety is best, maximize shelf life, and buy items that could be eaten without adding water or having to cook or heat it. Stock up enough for at least a month at a bare minimum. More is better.
One of the more interesting firearms used by the U.S. military was the M6 Aircrew Survival Weapon. This was a superposed 22 Hornet rifle barrel over a .410 shotgun barrel that was usually stored in collapsed form in a tool bag aboard airplanes, particularly long-range bombers that flew over the Arctic. Spare ammunition was stored in the butt stock.
The point of these firearms was to give a downed aircrew a fighting chance at survival until they reached safety or were rescued. Based on its design, it sounds almost like the perfect survival rifle to store in a vehicle, boat, aircraft or backpack.
Instead of a typical firearm trigger, the shooter has a large trigger bar to depress in order to fire the M6 Scout. This design shows the lineage from the Cold War because it was made so the shooter could fire the M6 while wearing extreme cold weather mittens.
It is definitely interesting, but it has a few quirks.
A civilian version was offered by Springfield Armory called the M6 Scout. The rifles were actually built by CZ and came in two caliber choices: 22 Hornet over .410 shotgun or 22 long rifle over .410 shotgun. Parkerized and stainless steel versions also were available.
“Civilian version” is a key term, as the M6 Scout had 18-inch barrels in order to comply with the National Firearms Act that prohibits smoothbore barrels shorter than that, without paying for a tax stamp. For safety reasons, a “trigger guard” was added over the trigger bar.
Small Hands Needed
In order to fire it as it shipped from Springfield Armory, you need to have tiny hands. The trigger guard also keeps the M6 from compactly folding in half. I just remove the trigger guard to make life simpler.
With the trigger guard out of the picture, the shooter needs to cock the hammer like a single-action revolver and can choose which barrel to fire by pulling the hammer up to fire the top barrel or pushing it down to fire the shotgun barrel.
The sights are crude, but scope mounts are available to aid in accuracy. Yet the weakest link is that trigger bar. It is almost never consistent, besides being heavy and awkward.
There is no forend on the M6. Some shooters wrap the lower barrel in paracord to aid in shooting and to give a ready supply of paracord should they need some. I leave mine the way it is, but do run a sling made from paracord.
This is another area where the ball was dropped. There is a front swivel of sorts: a hole in the barrel band that can accept a European swivel. Smaller Euro swivels can be ordered for more money than a custom sling may cost; I drilled mine out to take a standard U.S. swivel. For the rear swivel I removed a stock screw and installed an M1 Garand stock swivel using the existing stock screw to keep it in place.
Accuracy is not the best with these, but if you get used to that trigger bar, you can use the M6 on small game. If space allows it and you can find the mount, a small red dot sight might come in handy, as well.
They may be one of the most overrated prepper guns on the market. One of the modern Savage or Chiappa superposed rifle/shotgun combinations will work better in this regard — such as a 223 or 22 Magnum over a 20 Gauge.
As a collector’s piece they are interesting and they certainly fit a minimalist role as a take-down rifle, but I think there are better survival rifles for real-world purposes out there that offer improved accuracy, better take-down power on small game as well as higher capacity.
Have you ever shot an M6? Do you think it is overrated? Share your thoughts in the section below:
By Michael Snyder. Is the prepper movement in the United States dying? At one time it was estimated that there were 3 million preppers in the United States, but in
The post It Is Like A Nuclear Bomb Went Off In The Prepping Community appeared first on Ask a Prepper.
By Ryan – Modern Survival Online
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.
This week I have another awesome video for you from City Prepping. In it he talks about 10 things preppers should do everyday. The list is below. 1. Carry Cash. 2. Keep Your Gas Tank Above 1/2 Full. 3. Stay Informed. 4. Make Sure Your Finances Are In Order. 5. Take Your E.D.C. With You. […]
Suppose that significant other isn’t into preparedness. What is the first thing to do to get them thinking about the possibility about the “unthinkable” happening?
Hand them a copy of this book.
by Leon Pantenburg
Amanda Ripley’s “The Unthinkable” is not about disaster recovery: It’s about what happens in the midst of one – before emergency personnel arrive and structure is imposed on the loss. It’s about the human reaction to disaster and how you should act if you want to survive.
Survival Book Review: The Unthinkable: Who Survives When Disaster Strikes and Why By Amanda Ripley
This is a fact: Nine of 10 Americans live in places at significant risk of earthquake, tornado, hurricanes, terrorism, or other disasters. Tomorrow you may have to make significant decisions to save yourself and/or your family. Or maybe you could have to make those decisions before you finish reading this!
It may be in an urban or wilderness survival situation. Or you may have run to the grocery store for a gallon of milk when the earthquake or tornado hits.
Regardless of where or when the incident occurs, you will have to take decisive actions to survive.
But the overwhelming response, of the great majority of people, to that concept is something along the lines of:…I, personally, will not be affected by any of those emergencies…. And even if a disaster happens, it somehow won’t threaten or engulf me or my family… But if it does, there’s nothing I can do anyway, so there is no need to prepare…
This is denial. If that continues to be part of your mindset, then you have just gotten into the first phase of a deadly, downward behavior progression that could cost your life.
The Unthinkable: Who Survives When Disaster Strikes and Why” Amanda Ripley, an investigative journalist, writes about the human psychological reaction to disasters. Ripley covered some of the most devastating disasters of our time, and retraces how people reacted. She interviews leading brain scientists, trauma psychologists and other disaster experts. She comes up with the stunning inadequacies of many of our evolutionary responses.
Ripley’s book is not about disaster recovery: It’s about what happens in the midst of one – before emergency personnel arrive and structure is imposed on the loss.
Ripley describes a “survival arc” everyone must travel to get from danger to safety. The survival arc’s three chronological phases of denial, deliberation and the decisive moment make up the structure of the book.
And while the path to survival may resemble a roller coaster rather than an arc, Ripley writes, it’s rare that anyone gets through a disaster without passing through these main stages at least once.
If you’ve ever thought about a disaster and possible reactions to it, then you’re on the right track. Ripley starts the survival arc process with the thought “I wonder what I would do if…”
Here’s the survival arc progression, according to Ripley, of a typical reaction to a disaster situation:
Denial: This can’t be happening. This isn’t happening to me. It’s all a bad dream. I’m imagining this. In a moment everything will be all right.
Denial is the most insidious fear response of all.“The more I learned, the more denial seemed to matter all the time, even long before the disaster, on days that passed without incident,” Ripley writes. Denial can manifest itself in delay. Or it can cause people to freeze or become immobile in disbelief. Many, if not most, people shut down in a crisis, quite the opposite of panic. Denial can paralyze you.
Deliberation: We know something is terribly wrong, but don’t know what to do about it. How do you decide?
The first thing is the realization that nothing is normal. We all think and perceive things differently. We become, Ripley claims, superheros with learning disabilities. At this point, you need to have some training, or prior “What If?” planning to fall back on. The overwhelming tendency will be for your mind to go blank, and you won’t have clue on what to do next. Let’s hope you learned the STOP mindset exercise. (See story link below).
Your brain may be like the computer that has lost all its connections. Remember STOP as one of those vital links. Embed the acronym, and how to use it, into your psyche. To get through the deliberation phase and on to the decisive moment, you will have had to rely on your survival mindset and prior training.
The Decisive Moment: You’ve accepted that you are in danger, deliberated the options and
now it is time to make a plan to do something. If you’re in a group, about 75 to 80 percent of the crowd will do nothing, according to John Leach in “Survival Psychology.” Another 10 to 15 percent will do the wrong thing, and only about 10 percent will make the right decisions. And these people who react appropriately will do so because of previous training.
Anybody with a “Be Prepared” mentality hopefully moves quickly through the initial denial phase. We’ll also hope that you have read and studied survival techniques so you will be able to deliberate effectively and move on to the decisive moment phase. But even if you think you’re prepared mentally for surviving a disaster, “Unthinkable” is a book you need to read.
The book is not about stockpiling food, tools, weapons or prepping. You must understand what goes on in your head during a disaster before you can use your tools. You’ll need information and techniques to respond correctly. Some of that information can come from “The Unthinkable.”
The book’s information is a powerful survival tool. It should be in your prepper or survival library.
“This awful catastrophe is not the end but the beginning. History does not end so. It is the way its chapters open.” St. Augustine.
Click here to listen to earthquake expert geologist James Roddey on SurvivalCommonSense.com Radio
17 Free Kindle Books for Preppers While it may be hard to pass over freebies, sometimes they are free for a reason. Free books, in particular, have a reputation for being pretty bad. So we combed through the free books available for the Kindle and found a few good resources. Whether you are looking for …
Are You Only a Prepper If You Call Yourself One? Preparedness as a Way of Life Do you know many other preppers in person? Are there people in your life that don’t call themselves preppers but pretty much do the basics of what any prepper would want to do – keep their house well stocked …
The post Are You Only a Prepper If You Call Yourself One? Preparedness as a Way of Life appeared first on SHTF & Prepping Central.
Prepping for SHTF scenarios with Angry American Forrest & Kyle “The Prepping Academy” Listen in player below! Forrest and Kyle are interviewing author Chris Weatherman. Some folks may know Chris by another name though. Angry American. Chris is a successful author with more than a few novels under his belt. His “Going Home” series is a … Continue reading Prepping for SHTF scenarios with Angry American
By Mac Slavo – SHTFplan.com
Bad weather, slippery roads, snow and ice, car wrecks, even avalanches.
It wouldn’t be hard to imagine a scenario where you really could be stranded in your vehicle, and cut off from the rest of the world, with freezing weather and extreme conditions to contend with – especially in the Northern states.
While this situation is survivable, dozens of people die every year in these dangerous events. One of the major reasons is that fewer people are prepared in their vehicles.
But in an unexpectedly bad situation, especially one where you don’t know how long you could be stranded, it is vitally important to keep a kit in your vehicle. At a minimum, it should include blankets and coverings for warmth, medical supplies, an emergency supply of water and food.
For some real life cases of this, people had better fortune when they stayed close to their car, and had a source of heat to avoid hypothermia or other life-threatening complications. If you stay near the road, and in or near your vehicle, you will be found. With some common sense, you will be found alive.
Sensible Prepper writes:
Extreme Winter Survival Vehicle Kit. We’re putting together the items that can give you a fighting chance against Old Man Winter. Inspired by the Story of the family in NW Nevada who in 2014, was stranded in their vehicle for 48 hours in -21 degree temps and their story of survival.
Meanwhile, this video covers some of the most useful items that you may need to survive the winter, deal with power blackouts, snow ins, provide emergency warmth and sustainable heating methods.
33 Winter Preps and Survival Gear
Everyone’s needs are different, depending upon where you live, and how used you are to living self-sufficient.
Nonetheless, the winter can be harsh and unforgiving for anyone. Be ready.
This article first appeared at SHTFplan.com: Extreme Winter Survival Vehicle Preps: “Stay Warm and You Will Be Found”
By Chris Black – SurvivoPedia
Let me start today’s article with an axiom: despite the fact that DIY-ing briquettes is a hard and messy job, if you’re not afraid to get your hands dirty, you can make a reasonable income by selling (your extra) charcoal/wood briquettes.
The idea is that you can make DIY briquettes for your homestead provided you’re fine with “dirty jobs” whilst making an extra buck by selling some of them to your neighbors.
The demand for these babies is pretty high, so there’s definitely money to be made from briquettes.
I spend a great deal of time in the wilderness and I have come to realize that most people have no idea what safety in the wilderness implies. I’m not talking here about not having a well-equipped survival bag or the proper gear. I’m referring to the fact that people are unaware of how to … Read more…
I recently asked a fellow author and prepper to recommend a well-written prepper novel, and he replied without hesitation: The Road, by Cormac McCarthy. I ordered the book through my rural lending library system right away.
To say that The Road is well-written is an understatement. The book – which won a Pulitzer Prize — contains wording so artfully constructed that I had to stop and ask myself if the book in my hand was one of prose or poetry. The imagery was graceful. The emotion was moving. The words flowed like water across the smooth stones of a brook bed.
However, when I mentioned the book to others who were familiar with it, McCarthy’s beautiful writing was not what most people commented on first. They said things like “dark,” “bleak” and “scary.” Those were the words I heard most when I talked with others. I read many reviews expressing similar sentiments, and I learned that the book had been made into a movie.
Spoiler alert: If you have not read the book or seen the movie and you want to, stop reading this review right here.
The book follows the journey of a man and his young son struggling to survive in a post-apocalyptic world. The father has made the decision that they can no longer remain in place and that they must travel south toward the coast in search of better options.
It is possible the man might be seeking solidarity with fellow survivors, as well, but he remains highly suspicious and guarded when encountering others—and with good reason. Society has broken down into a vicious dog-eat-dog world where everyone is clinging to their own survival by a thread and nobody is trustworthy.
McCarthy tells a lean tale. He doesn’t clutter the story with extraneous details. He doesn’t even give names to the characters—just “the man” and “the boy” and the title “Papa” in conversation. We are not told of their setting, but the mention that there used to be “states” and “state roads” implies it is America. We know it is a cold and snowy season.
There are few facts given about the event itself. We know only that it happened several years prior to the first chapter. Huge clusters of civilization have been burned to the ground and survivors were few. What little is left is covered with ash so thick and pervasive that it has left almost no flora or fauna.
There was once a wife and mother, but she is gone before the book begins. The boy’s birth happened at the same time as the apocalyptic event, and readers are given to understand that the three of them somehow cobbled together a life of survival for a period of years.
We learn early on that the struggle became too much for her. She chose to end her life rather than go on in a world so hopeless. It is a heartrending scene as the couple engages in an argument, each attempting to sway the other in that awful life-and-death decision—he begs her to stay, and she begs him to go with her.
The man is determined to go on living, despite the stark living conditions, ever-present danger, and vast challenges. He forges on southward, protecting himself and his son from looters, murderers, cannibals, starvation and freezing as best as he can.
The little boy is anxious and fearful—he has lived his entire life in apocalyptic conditions, has trouble imagining having friends, and tastes his first Coca-Cola while on the journey south. His mother is gone, and his father has taught him that if he ever finds himself in a situation where he knows he will be tortured—or worse—that he is to follow in her footsteps.
But in spite of being a child born into a stark world that seems to deny any existence of a higher power, there is a certain celestial sense about the boy. There are hints throughout the book of him possessing a wisdom beyond his years and a compassion too deep to have been developed in his upbringing.
I caught myself wondering whether the wife had been right. Could the trauma and suffering possibly ever pay off?
Alternately, I was angry at her. If she had stayed, I thought, their lives would be better. Less alone. Less pressure on either of them as the sole caretaker of the other. It struck me that she had chosen out of selfishness, to the detriment of those she loved. I wondered: What would I have done in her shoes?
But the man had declared that they were survivors. To him, it wasn’t just an empty word. It was the mantra upon which he based every decision, every action, every sacrifice of making sure the boy was warmer and healthier and better fed than he himself was.
In the end, the father sacrificed everything he had. He gave his all to make the best possible life for his son, never making time for his own body to recover from whatever malady had struck him, and the malady won the day.
But hopelessness does not win. In this story of tragedy where it seems that the only way out is to follow the path taken by his wife, the man chooses a different one. He chooses life for his son. Even knowing that the odds are stacked high against the boy, he chooses hope and life.
“Goodness will find the little boy. It always has. It will again,” McCarthy tells us.
The boy sits with his father’s body for three days before a stranger comes along. And somehow, the stranger does bring goodness. He assures the boy that he is one of the good guys and that he doesn’t eat people, helps him tend to his father’s remains, and takes him home to join his family.
The mother talks to the boy about God, but she tells him it’s alright if he talks to his father instead.
Incredibly, despite a journey of cold horror, human tenderness and warmth carry the day.
I keep the book at the back of my mind as I go about my own life. Sometimes I think about the strength and tenacity of the father, or the beauty of the son’s compassion for others. I remind myself that I’m doing the right thing by tucking away extra food and supplies for a rainy day. I ponder the implications of the evening news. Mostly, though, I feel grateful—for food, and warmth, and shelter, and community. And above all, I am grateful for hope.
Have you ever read The Road? What was your reaction to it? Share your thoughts in the section below:
(NaturalNews) According to survival expert James Wesley Rawles, a former Army intelligence officer who operates Survivalblog.com, Hillary Clinton’s loss is a win for common sense in America. But he also cautions that Trump’s victory has opened a door for globalist provocateur George Soros to continue to fund opposition groups and protests. Some anti-Trump activists have plans to force shut downs of transportation networks on Inauguration Day.
The entire year of 2017, according to Rawles, could be one of upheaval as globalist forces fight against Trump and his vision for a renewed America. As reported by Allnewspipeline.com, even though America just “dodged a serious bullet,” deep concerns remain about social unrest, banking, economic collapse, inflation and the potential for a Venezuelan-like starvation scenario. Rawles urges those listening to “double down” all preparations in 2017.
Diatomaceous earth, aka DE, is a completely natural product derived from fossilized diatoms, which are hard-shelled algae from bodies of water. You’ll usually buy it in the form of a light-colored powder, and it’s not expensive. It does meet one of our biggest needs as preppers – it’s multi-purpose.
However, you should learn how to use it right. We’ll help you solve this problem starting from the questions one of our readers asked.
Filed under: Prepping
By The Survival Place Blog
As you can imagine, there are a lot of people in the prepper community who think they’re better prepared than they really are. They assume that because they have a getaway vehicle, bugout safe house, and an arsenal of different survival tools, that they’ll be safe if and when a disaster began tearing at the fabric of civilization. This isn’t necessarily true! The tools for survival are only as good as the person wielding them, so here are some essential skills every prepper must learn.
You’ve probably heard before that we can go three weeks without food, but a mere three days without water. Water is by far the most important thing you’ll need in a survival situation, so learning how to purify dirty water sources is essential to your skills as a prepper. There are three main techniques you can use to purify water. Boiling it for at least five minutes is probably the most accessible, provided you can start a fire and source an appropriate receptacle. Where you don’t have a heat source, chemical purifiers such as chlorine, iodine and potassium permanganate can be used, provided they’re in small enough doses not to be toxic! Store-bought charcoal and ceramic filters can also be handy for purifying water. Get familiar with all three of these techniques; your life could depend on it!
Fire Making Without a Lighter or Matches
After water, heat is among the most essential things you need for survival when civilization breaks apart. This will allow you to boil water and therefore purify it, cook food, ward off wild animals, and protect yourself from the cold. Fire is one of the first technologies that our earliest ancestors are thought to have harnessed, and there’s good reason for this! While you should certainly try to have a decent stock of matches and lighters in preparation for a worldwide disaster, these things are going to run out eventually, and after that you’re going to have to rely on your own means. Make sure you learn a few techniques for starting a fire, such as using a fire bow or flint and steel.
Whittling and Wood Working
One of the major things that’s going to make it hard for most people to adapt to life post-disaster is not having easy access to all the materials and commodities which we take for granted in our day to day lives. Without oil rigs, steel mills and so on, preppers need to learn a bit about manipulating the one material they’ll always be able to get a hold of: wood. You may have hated it in school, but get a few woodworking tools and start learning the basic principles of making some of the wooden structures and tools that you may need. Here’s a useful reference that will get you started. Of course, you’re going to have limited access to electricity when the grid goes down. However, learning woodworking can be exceedingly helpful even when you only have hand tools.
Learn these three skills, and you’ll be in a much better position when disaster strikes!
When you need to get out of town as quickly as possible in an emergency, not all vehicles are created equal. Some rides are pretty nice and might even be
The post Top 5 Awesome Bug Out Vehicles You Can Actually Afford appeared first on Ask a Prepper.
Black Friday Show! Forrest & Kyle “The Prepping Academy” Listen in player below! The holiday chaos, food, family, road rage, and the one question that plagues us all: what do you buy for the Prepper who has everything? How ’bout some tips from Kyle on how to survive the holiday madness? It’s incredibly difficult shopping for … Continue reading Black Friday Show!
Making your home more environmentally friendly is important. You need to live a greener life alongside the environment. Becoming more self-sufficient is a wonderful way of making sure you improve survival skills and help care for the planet too.
We are moving towards a greener and more eco-friendly world, and this is a good thing. But we still have a way to go yet. So you need to do as much as you can to make sure you are as energy-efficient as possible. In recent years we’ve seen the likes of Chile’s Renewable Energy Conference show the importance of greener living. It doesn’t matter if you’re a business or an individual, renewable energy is the future for all of us, so we need to understand that and prepare for it.
Grow Your Own Food
One of the key things you can do to have a greener life is to start growing your own food. And you’ll notice that more and more people are doing that these days. You don’t even need an allotment to do it. You can convert areas of your garden into a vegetable patch, etc. Growing your own food is a wonderful way to enjoy the freshest produce and save yourself some money in the process. It also allows you to learn the skills of planting and growing and feeding yourself naturally.
Technology is so prevalent in life these days that many people have forgotten how to do things without it. There are a lot of things we take for granted these days because we have technology to do it all for us. So, to enjoy a more natural life, you need to make sure you limit your technology usage. This doesn’t mean you have to go all out Amish. But, you should try to cut down on the amount you use, and, where possible, refrain from using technology. This will give you a greater appreciation of the outside world and how wonderful nature can be sometimes.
Learn to Live off the Land
It’s important to learn valuable survival skills wherever you can, and that means living off the land. You can take weekend or week-long excursions to learn how to do this. You can also move to somewhere more remote so you can make full use of the natural resources that are around. Our ancestors used to live off the land all the time, and we have lost our way somewhat. If you can learn to do this, then you will have picked up some of the most valuable survival skills. It means that if anything were to go awry, and you had to survive in the wilderness, you’d be fine.
Having a more simple and stripped back existence is crucial for helping you live life alongside the environment. You want to try to turn your home into an eco-home and learn to live alongside nature a bit more. We get so caught up with technology these days that we wouldn’t survive without it. At least you’ll be okay if the apocalypse should hit!
Let’s begin today’s article with a question: do you know what homo sapiens means? Well, I bet you do. But then again, how about homo faber? What’s the relation between homo sapiens and homo faber?
Translated literally, homo faber means “man, the maker.”
To put it simply, let’s assume that dolphins are very intelligent creatures since that’s what I hear constantly on National Geo and the Discovery Channel.
But that intelligence doesn’t help them much; they’re just the same as they were 500,000 years ago. Cute, intelligent creatures that constantly get caught in our fishing nets (by mistake) and they can’t get out. They often end up in tuna cans (that’s why I never eat tuna, but I’m digressing).
Are you starting to get the picture?
Homo faber is a peculiar creature, and I mean us, the people, the only “animals” on the planet which are able to control their environment through the use of – you guessed it – tools. Okay, tools and a juicy brain-to-body ratio. Some say that we control our fate too with those same tools, but I have my doubts about that.
How Being a New Father Shaped Me as a Prepper Becoming a new parent is a powerful experience and drastically changes your life. When we sit down to reflect on these experiences it can provide a little clarity on how they affected our priorities. Keeping your family safe, healthy, and fed is a noble cause …
Top Prepper Gadget Christmas Gifts Highlander “Survival & Tech Preps” Audio in player below! Are you a technology nut like me? If so this is the show for you! I will be giving the best list of pepper type gadgets that would make the perfect gifts. These are gifts for those like minded individuals that … Continue reading Top Prepper Gadget Christmas Gifts
When we think of large-scale terrorist attacks, epidemics, natural disasters, or any of the other threats facing society, I’m sure you’ll agree that the one place you don’t want to be is in a large city. This is where there’s likely to be the biggest loss of life, and a massive crush of fleeing people that will make it extremely difficult to survive. However, if you’re living in a city, it’s still possible to survive in the event of a major disaster. Here are a few valuable pieces of advice to keep in mind.
Know your Route(s)
Seen as it’s where you live, I’ll assume that you know your city and the area around it like the back of your hand. If you had to evacuate at short notice, which route would be the fastest out of the city? This is probably easy to determine for any local. After you’ve established this however, you need to start thinking about back-up routes. During mass-evacuations, it’s very common for highways and main routes out of urban areas to get clogged up with traffic, and bring everything to a standstill. This is not the route you want to take when you need to get out! If you can’t use your primary route, think about alternatives, and rank them according to how quick and accessible they’ll be.
Secure a Bug-Out Vehicle
If there’s one thing that’s going to influence your chances of survival in the event of a disaster more than anything, it’s the vehicle you have. When I say “bug-out vehicle”, I mean a real one, not just any ordinary car. Trucks and SUVs are generally the best choices for people with families. It needs to be AWD, well-maintained, and capable of tackling pretty much any terrain. After securing your bug-out vehicle, you need to get into a routine of checking on it, making sure it’s well-maintained and ready to go whenever you need it. While a car of some description is the best choice if you have a family to take with you, motorcycles can often be a better option if you’d be evacuating alone. This is due to their ability to negotiate high-traffic areas, and their versatility on various landscapes. If you’ve never rode a motorcycle before, start doing some research on blogs like Bikers’ Basics.
Know the Warning Signs
If you know what to look for leading up to a scenario where it’s necessary to evacuate, you’ll have a considerable edge. The authorities will always announce a citywide evacuation when it really hits the fan. This will cause a massive, sudden rush of people, causing entire roads to be jammed up with traffic, and possibly some rioting. As you can imagine, you’ll stand far better chances of survival if you’re one of the people who leaves before the authorities tell everyone to. Your routes will be more accessible, and the sense of calm will reduce the chances of you running into any other serious problems that come with the panic of a citywide disaster.
People’s perception will change and have changed already in some cases. Depending on what side of the so-called political aisle you call home, things may have changed for the worse or the better. It’s all perception at this point. Sometimes all it takes to change trajectory is the likelihood of something new.
It is not what the new administration will actually do, but how you and others react to the prospect. New vigor, new energy, in some cases, and as a Prepper sometimes all it takes to kick things into high gear is possibilities.
Will the EPA be hobbled, will homeowners be able to collect rainwater without fear of fines or even jail. Will you be able to have a pond on your land for livestock without someone coming along and saying you have committed a crime, or how about digging a well or putting in a bunker on your land? Will people be able to disconnect from utility companies even though they live within the confines of a city, can we have a latrine or compost pile in our backyards.
What about gun control, will you be able to get ammunition or guns as they are needed, or do you have to hoard Ammo or firearms for fear of some new regulation that may prevent you from buying more. We don’t know yet, but what we do know is that things will change, and in some instances, the only thing that will change, however, is how you perceive the new administration.
The threats are still there. Hurricanes, tornadoes, blizzards, and floods care not about who may be in power, but you do, and thus, how you prepare may change. A more efficient government may mean a faster and more efficient response to emergencies in your community. It is possible that we as a country may look to taking care of our own before worrying about others. A possibility, and whether it is right or wrong it could happen and may very well happen, and this again will change how you prepare, maybe.
If you are to believe the chatter, the rhetoric if you will, from the President-Elect then you believe there will be fewer regulations. Businesses and private individuals will have less onerous regulations, less paperwork, less money spent on compliance, fewer permits to seek, and a greater sense of freedom, and maybe we can speak our minds without fear of ridicule. All possible and sometimes that’s all it takes.
It will be a slow process in many cases. Much slower than some anticipated, but knowing it is in the works may be enough for the moment, a perception that things will get better. The villains are still there through, but the closet door has been flung open and the bogeyman lurking there does not seem quite so threatening, as it did in the dark of night.
You still have to prep, still have to be ready for the wrath of Mother Nature and you still have to worry about terrorism, but somewhere in the back of your mind, you may be able to start believing that now maybe someone has your back. Has your back and that the threats will be called out and the villains exposed. Once the curtain is pulled back and sunlight is allowed into, the corners only then can you truly assess the threats and prepare for them. Until then we must all be ready because perception is one thing, reality is another.
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Editor’s Note: This post contributed by Mike Harris. If you have information for Preppers that you would like to share and possibly win a $300 Amazon Gift Card to purchase your own prepping supplies, enter the Prepper Writing Contest today.
With the Holidays fast approaching I know how frustrating it can be trying to get loved ones that perfect gift that is not only practical but will benefit them in ways a flashy pretty piece of jewelry or a cool video game can’t. Having first hand experience with getting high dollar prepping items for non-preppers who not only don’t appreciate them but also shake their head in disdain is a feeling all to familiar to me. So here I have compiled a list of 11 gifts for non-preppers under $50 that can put that loved one in a better predicament of preparedness without them even knowing it. This list is non-excusive that will make for great prepper gift ideas for both guys and gals of all ages!
Portable Power pack
Portable Power packs come in all shapes, sizes, colors and capacities. I have found these not only extremely well received by non-preppers but unprecedented by most in the overall preparedness value it brings. The typical iPhone battery is about 2,000 mah of power. With power packs ranging from 2,000 mah to the 50,000 “All Powers” external power pack. The user can charge their portable electronics many times over. Not only are their uses for small electronics great but also they provide so much diversity in regards to their many colors, sizes and applications.
Giving your loved ones the ability to meet all their small electronic needs is a huge prepping multiplier! We all know inclement weather, terrorism, earthquakes, accidents, and overall disaster will happen it’s never been a matter of if but when. According to Current statistics there are over 260 million cell phone users in the United States of America! With this knowledge in mind equip your loved ones with the ability to send that text message, write that tweet, updated that Facebook status, hash tag their ideas, post that controversial idea, record that memorable moment. But most importantly give them the life saving power they need to get in contact with Emergency services and loved ones in the event something goes wrong! You will be happier and can rest assured knowing you have set them up for success.
Foldable solar panel
Small foldable solar panels are not only “hipster and progressive” (air quotes emphasized for meaning attractive to a younger audience) in many aspects but provide a wealth preparedness capabilities unparalleled in many respects. Not only do foldable solar panels provide an unlimited amount of electricity when the sun is out but are very easy to store and user-friendly to use. Requiring virtually no maintenance upkeep, they can be that lifeline you can depend on when everything around you is falling apart. They can be used and implemented anywhere at anytime as long as there is light, even under bad forecast they can provide you the life saving power you or someone you know may need in the even of a disaster.
Now couple this with an external power pack and now you have an unlimited power source that can keep you off grid indefinitely! You will be hard pressed to find something that brings more independence and stress free-living then being able to personally provide for all your small electronic power needs free from the power grid!
Solar flash light/ Lantern
Light more often than not is something that is taken for granted by the average person. Fortunately most of us live in a world where we can flip and switch and magically we have light. While this is ideal it’s not always the case when disaster strikes. Solar Lighting not only gives the user the ability to have light where they may otherwise not have it but also allows them to have lighting abilities indefinitely because they are not susceptible to depleted disposable batteries, or oil sources like what we see with traditional flashlights and oil lanterns.
Natural sunlight light can be taken advantage of during the day and can be used at night. Also like the already mentioned items many of them have the ability to be also used as an external power pack giving them more than one use. We don’t realize the importance of light until the light goes out and we hear that boom in the middle of the night! Remember two is one, one is none. To see the capabilities these light devices have check out a couple of product reviews.
When you say cutting tools you are referring to a broad diverse spectrum of “sharp objects”. This was done purposely – every one is different and requires different types of cutting tools. What I would give a college sorority girl who drives a Toyota corolla and has no preparedness inclination versus an avid hunter that drives a lifted 4×4 truck and stays off the beaten path for days at a time is going to be different in style and ergonomics; but the methodology and application will be very similar.
Examples for a self-defense situation I would be more inclined to give a college sorority girl a “Honeycomb Hairbrush concealed stiletto dagger” or a “Cat personal safety keychain”. They are complete concealable very fashionable that can go with any purse or outfit. These items will provide a quick control for an unprecedented attack while serving primarily as an everyday use item. While for my avid hunter, Military, or EMS person I might give a “SOG FastHawk Hatchet” that can be used as a self-defense tool, extrication device, wood cutting tool etc. As you can see cutting tools have a wide range of styles and uses that can serve a diverse array of preparedness needs without coming across as such.
Portable water filter
Portable water filters are one of those small cheap out of sight out of mind water applications that quite frankly will at a minimum sustain life! These make a perfect gift for all people regardless of age, gender, or lifestyle. I can say from personal experience being well-traveled around the world these have been a game changer. Being in other countries where the tap water was considered unsafe due to viruses and bacteria I never had to worry about where I got my drinking water. Especially with products like the “Sawyer mini Water Filter” that will easily screw onto any commercial water bottle I was able to fill up my bottle (from any local water source) attach the filter and keep moving without any fear of contracting any water-borne illnesses.
Most commercial portable water filters on the market today will remove over 99% of all bacteria, such as salmonella, cholera and E.coli and remove over 99% of all protozoa elements such as giardia and cryptosporidium. The “Sawyer Mini Water Filter” Claims it can filter up to 100,000 gallons and weighs only 2 ounces. According to science the average adult human body is 50-65% water. On average the everyday American uses about 80-100 gallons of water per day. While this is taking other water usages into calculation one can still see the importance of water especially when considering that in a disaster the average person will be expending more calories and using more water. No matter where you are whether that be in a local park, traveling in another country, or in the safety of one’s home drinking clean potable water is an absolute necessity and water is unequivocally the giver of life! Make having clean and potable water a necessity!
Waterproof speakers with external charging capabilities
The waterproof speakers with external charging capabilities are what gets the person from the sidelines into the action in regards to preparedness. This is a gateway preparedness gift. Regardless if you are an NCAA Cheerleader, Surfer, camper, Military Service member, or the everyday person the ability to access to and have all their music and electronic needs met is an extremely good selling point. According to a Nielsen’s Music 360 2014 study, 93% of the U.S. population listens to music, spending more than 25 hours each week jamming out to their favorite tunes.
The waterproof speakers encourage the user to take their lives off the beaten path, to push beyond the realms of their typical everyday habits. The external charging capabilities give the user an added layer of support and comfort being outside in those environments. Now add a foldable solar panel and the possibilities for adventures off the beaten path are endless. It’s much easier to engage someone in a “what if” scenario or talk about preparedness if your already off the beaten path, outside the “safety confines” of the power grid simultaneously creating your own endless energy while listening to their favorite music. I’m just saying!
Seeds and plants are one of the only preps “gifts” what will give back in dividends that will well exceed the initial cost. Being able to take a handful of seeds or a plant and create an endless life-sustaining ecosystem is truly beyond words. Permaculture does more than just provides a means by which to feed ones self. Permaculture in many respects is one of the most rewarding pursuits we can do as human beings. Giving us the ability to create and take care of life, being independent of the corporate bureaucracy of Big Ag, and allows one to create their own sustainable paradigm.
The lessons gained from the successes and losses of growing. Not to mention the invaluable skill set that has been slowly taken out of our modern-day society. Living in a day and age where we have become so dependent on a system that could care less the consequences of their actions and practices should worry us all. So stay one step ahead of chaos get someone you care about a small seed variety pack, or a tomato plant. If you really like them get them a moringa tree!
Multi-Tools are invaluable to anyone, they provide hundreds of functions and are more compact then wallet or small makeup case. Yet it provides the essentials to most day-to-day maintenance. Whether we are talking about opening a bottle or performing a plumbing task using pliers and a cutting tool. The Multi-Tool is a silent hero; it can be carried as an EDC or left in the glove box of a vehicle until needed.
It’s a jack-of-all-trades but master of none. You won’t necessarily build a house with it but it can get you out of pretty much any tight situation you might find yourself in. To top it off, in modern-day 2016 Multi-Tools are no longer big bulky steel bricks carried in the same old leather or webbing straps. They come in all styles, colors, and designs. They even have bracelet Multi-Tools!
Hand-Crank Emergency Power Source
I’ll let you choose what features are important to you but having a power source independent of another source but your will is absolute by its own definition! We don’t get to choose when disaster will strike, or how it strikes, or what is affected. What we can do is decide for ourselves how prepared we will be. Having the ability to provide an indefinite amount of light, power, and communication etc. day and night is what preparedness is all about.
How many times have we looked down at our cell phone and realized we at minimum battery life now, now throw a wrench in your charging plan. That’s where these device swoop in to save the day. Many Hand-Crank Emergency Power Sources charge at the same rate as plugging it into a wall outlet. So in a few minutes you can bring a phone back from the dead regardless of the time, emergency, or situation you find yourself in!
Emergency Car Kit
Do you know a loved one with a vehicle? Do they have an Emergency Kit in their vehicle? If they don’t they are wrong and so are you! In the United States alone, approximately 7 tire punctures occur every second, resulting in 220 million flat tires per year. Approximately 50% of Americans don’t know how to change a tire (That’s just reported). I could talk to you for days on this subject but at the end of the day one must ask him or her self some simple questions. In an emergency situation will you depend on technology (AAA), the kindness of a stranger, or empower your self and loved ones to be self-sufficient? I can’t tell you how many people I have helped that have found themselves broke down on the side of the road. It breaks my heart because I know somewhere down the line they were failed! Don’t fail your self or your loved ones. Give them and yourself the tools for success and most importantly train them to do the basics!
Last but certainly not least we have candles and fire starters. I put these two in the same category because they go together very interchangeably. For the record U.S. retail sales of candles are estimated at approximately $3.2 billion annually, excluding sales of candle accessories (Source: Mintel, 2015). Candles are used in 7 out of 10 U.S. households, and are seen as an acceptable gift by both men and women. Not to mention Candles come in an endless variety of shapes, sizes and uses. We see this from votives to floating candles to those that are used in religious and ritual like settings. Regardless of why or how you use candles the ability to hold a flame is paramount in a disaster situation! So if holding a flame is paramount starting a flame is essential. Now I’m not advocating going out and getting everyone a Ferrocerium rod bush craft kit with char cloth all included. Nor am I saying go out and get your 19-year-old college sorority daughter a pack of cheap plastic bic lighters either. The great thing about fire starters now-a-days is that they come in all styles and colors. You have the Colibri Scepter lighter that looks like a tube of lipstick for the ladies to the custom Harley Davidson zippo for the seasoned veteran biker. In my humble opinion I would say that candles and fire starters are not only the easiest, and least expensive gifts to give but will arguable be, the first thing one reaches for in the event of a disaster. The ability to have a lite candle not only helps our physical needs in regards to light and heat. But the psychological ones are just as important if not more. The flame’s soft illumination reaches the soul; it can deliver hope and instill a calming relief. This coupled the aromatherapy of a scented candle can literally make all the difference in a disaster setting!
This completes my Top 11 gifts for your non-prepper friends and family. While the old slogan “it’s the thought that counts” may resonate with a lot of people it’s important to realize that your feelings and thoughts won’t be the deciding factor in who lives and who dies. Their ability to react logically and swiftly with the right tools will be the deciding factor. While you may not be able to control ones actions you can equip them with the right tools and get the brain working in the preparedness mindset without them even realizing it and that is the purpose of this article. I can tell you from personal experience when I realized this reality. I was there when the May 3rd Tornado that hit the Midwest in 1999. Not only do I remember the destruction that it left in its wake in my small Cleveland County, Oklahoma town. I remember my mother reaching under the bathroom sink to grab three candles so she could provide just a little light to her 3 confused and frightened boys. I remember her lighting these candles she had received as a gift. I don’t remember who gave them to her, but I can tell you I will never forget the smell of that first apple cider candle she lite, nor will I forget the impact of what a simple candle can do for a small frightened family in a ravaged home. I don’t personally think that individual who gave us those candles envisioned the scenario that they would be used for. Nor do I believe they knew the impact that such a small gift would have on someone’s life. But what I can say unequivocally was that small flame ignited hope, determination, and most importantly a unquenching desire to seek knowledge on all that is preparedness and to teach others everything I can. So wherever you may be, wherever life might I have taken you I want to say from the bottom of my heart; Thank You.
I hope you guys enjoyed this article, I hope to bring you more content in the future.
About the author: Mike Harris is a full-time RV’r spending the last couple years traveling not only the country but all over the world. Being a 4th generation sailor he has not only operated all over the world but grew up experiencing the rich diversities that make this world great but also a dangerous place. He is still Active duty he is a Search and Rescue Corpsman (Flight Medic) and an Aerospace Medical Technician. His preparedness and desire for sustainability are deep-rooted in reality. Having to endure and face catastrophe is not just a job description but also his personal mission. He has trained both local and federal agencies as well a foreign. He done real life missions he was there during hurricane Sandy and was also apart of the 2515th NAAD. When not working or prepping you can find him traveling the country in his RV, hiking off the beaten path or enjoying much-needed catch up time with friends and family. You can catch his adventures on his YouTube channel.
Luckily American presidential elections always fall in the middle of hunting season so for many Americans few things make a better election detox than long walk in the woods with a gun. As I was doing just that, I considered if Donald Trump would need to wear any hunter’s orange. Bad joke I know, but it did pop into my mind. And there’s more. Some of the greatest opportunities of discovery begin with the unexpected. And many things “unexpectedly” unfolded between the evening of the 8th and morning 9th of November.
So as one with survival/prepping bends, I embraced the unexpected as a chance to learn. A social experiment, if you will. Rather than placing value judgements on people or results, I studied the behaviors, reactions, and counter-reactions. Like when there’s a natural disaster, instead of critiquing the evacuation, I study the events as they unfold and use them to refine my personal survival models. They are a picture of reality whether you like it or not.
According to the polls, its a proven fact that the readership of this blog and SurvivalCache are 50% Democrats, 50% Repbulicans, 30% Libertarian, 25% Green Party, and 71% Independent. At least 75% of the readers are male and 46% are female. Overall they voted 3% for Trump, 3% for Hillary, with the remaining 99% voting for someone or something else that may or may not have included anyone officially on the ballot.
As with Trump’s season of unscripted reality TV shows, it became clear that it had all the makings of a blockbuster thriller with none of the budget or stunt doubles. When each weekly episode ended we were left with a humdinger, a cliffhanger, or a key player was “killed off” the show. Sometimes there was a mind boggling plot twist that left America’s collective mouth agape and drooling. Red, blue, or purple, it made no difference. Everyone watched, listened, joked and talked about the show. But the biggest reveal, the one shocking the fans to their core and immediately becoming the most the defining moment of the entire first season, was when the audience was allowed to vote for the celebrity of choice. While it had long since been discovered that neither candidate could sing or dance, the followers of the show turned out in record droves. And then America became the star of the show. Yea, there was that tall guy and that shorter gal who were in the news, but for a brief moment, it was us, the citizens. It was our turn to take the spotlight. And trust me, we provided our own shock and awe.
Beware the Unknown unknowns
We have models for civil unrest, martial law, prepper percentages, mob behaviors, marauding, and natural disasters of all kinds. We make educated guesses on duration, when to call it a bug out, and any number of variables based on personal experience that we each individually believe will give us an advantage. The problem here: demographics data was wrong and Trump proved it.
Related: Trump Respect, not Understanding
Now I’m not one to give Trump any unearned sophistication, but he sure seemed to squeeze votes out of people and places that politicians had not drilled into in decades. The massive immigration of Americans flooding into the electoral system overwhelmed the poll vetting process to the point where it was clear we had no idea who would vote, and for whom they would vote.
In many ways, the election unfolded like a game of poker. Who’s hand was the best, who was bluffing, and most of all who was watching the game. So on Tuesday night, Hillary laid down the most important poker hand in her life, a straight flush (royals are unAmerican), all hearts, followed by smile and a Shoulder Shimmy™.
On the other side of the table, Trump hesitantly dropped his cards down on the green felt one at a time and looked just as surprised as the rest of America when his hand won. Who knew you could beat a straight flush with five-of-a-kind, all deuces. So how did Trump’s hand bite Hillary in the pantsuit? Because the media didn’t know there were more than four of each suite in a deck of cards since they never played polling poker with the entire deck.
Trump Voached, or poached votes, plain and simple. Nothing in the illegal sense, but definitely with the same tactics as professional poachers. Trump’s Voaching included attracting voters with bait. Trump Voached votes out of season by addressing topics formerly thought off limits to candidates. Trump Voached well over his limit of certain demographic groups leaving less game for the rest of the candidates to hunt. Trump viciously Voached votes by attacking fellow hunters in the primary and again during the general election. A Voaching Trump did not throw back the bottom feeders, trash fish, and other nuisance pests who still counted towards his limit because they are Americans. In many cases he even proudly hugged them for a selfie while simultaneously looking confused as to who they were.
Cape of Fear
A bright spot in all this disagreement that grows in intensity every day since 11/9 (although some compare it to 9/11) can be seen in a convergence of gun rights. Many traditional Republicans have wrapped themselves in the a 2nd Amendment cape strutting around like superheroes. Until recently, that cape was to give the common folk a fighting chance for when the government goes all tyrannical. Until recently, the fear of such tyranny was based upon ancient history and paranoia, at least according to the stereotypical Democrat. But on the 9th of November, 2016, a sizable swath of the those in the popular vote got a taste of that paranoia. And it was quite bitter. Now that the blood is drying and dust is settling, and the grieving process has moved away from rants and alcohol, a healthy respect for the power of the people has emerged. An unlikely consequence of this election: liberals may have a new perspective on the second amendment. Maybe there’s something to this well regulated militia stuff after all,” they’re thinking.
Read Also: The Free Marketplace of Ideas is Dead
In other words, the Right to Bear Arms looks a little different today to the “only-for-hunting” crowd. Not that Trump is the real enemy, but instead the very real chance that the undeniable rights of Americans might be infringed upon is the foe at the door. Exactly what those rights are has yet to be determined, but the Second Amendment is the Sheepdog, and there are a lot more blue sheepdogs today than this time last year.
But do you Operate?
There are at least two big survival takeaways as 2016 winds down. The first is that the Unknown Unknowns are alive and well. This means that there are significant concerns based in reality so there’s no need to waste good space adding bigfoot, Area 51, and chemtrails to your conspiracy of threats. There are very real threats which provide ample exercise for prepping and survival. Unfortunately the data we use to forecast imminent threats are incomplete at best. So, the downstream results of the threat gain an even greater margin of error.
To any serious survivalist, the so-called Mall Ninja has been the public face of the anti-operator or unprepper. If society collapsed, the purebred Mall Ninja would be little more than an irritating fly in need of swatting. Mall Ninjas are more of a threat to themselves than to others. With this being said, their abundance of gear and lack of skill means they shouldn’t be ignored, but rather treated like a drunk driver on the highway.
If Mall Ninjas are the public face of the prepared to the unprepared, and that face is used to generalize across society as a whole (or at least the portion of society that will attempt to survive), then our war planning is about to get a reality enema. If an unpolled, non-vocal segment of American society can Swiftboat a presidential election, just imagine what is waiting for you when the lights go out.
The second takeaway is the need to model our survival scenarios on more than popular demographics. The personal quantity of perceived threats in any competitive survival situation is probably based four factors: Hollywood, expendable income, ego, and the desire to remain sane. Hollywood is the generic term for fictional accounts of a disaster played out for entertainment. For many, the fiction is limited to the catastrophic event, but the reaction of the populace or the hero is often filed away by the consumer as a reasonable strategy should such an event ever unfold.
The expendable income aspect is that one cannot have it all so one must temper the universe to fit within whatever the pocketbook can afford. While there is positive correlation between gear and survival, it seems there is no lower threshold as to what constitutes “gear.”
Further Reading: Survival Psychology
Ego is a survival strategy. Not just that you can survive something, but that you deserve to survive. However, ego has been known to get some folks killed as well. Ego can lead you to do things like not asking for help, getting in over your head to avoid admitting you don’t know what you’re doing, or even thinking you have absolute Constitutional rights in the face of professional authorities.
And finally, one must navigate the turbid waters between imminent global catastrophe and a relaxing afternoon. Too much of either is unhealthy from a survival perspective, but one without the other rots your perspective. Applying the four aspects to the 2016 election should shift the mainstream American out of park, and the survival/prepper into high gear. Unfortunately, some people, including politicians, now plan on shifting into reverse. I can see their slogan now… “Make America Great Again Before It Was Great Again!”
The election results provide unvarnished insights into a portion of the fabric of society that rarely becomes measurable, but will certainly be fighting with you or next to you for scant resources when the overextended aspects of society collapse under their own weight. This is nothing short of Preparedness 2.0: an edgy remix with more cowbell. Just remember, a mind is like a parachute. It only works when it’s open but when it’s open you are a slower moving target that is easily visible from the ground.
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By The Survival Place Blog
The stereotype of preppers is one that very much doesn’t fit the reality a lot of us live in. Many will imagine that we’re loners without families. In reality, a lot of us have kids and spouses who we’re keen to protect as much as ourselves if not more. So, as a prepper with a family, you need to start preparing them, too. It just so happens to be that there are plenty of activities you can get into year round to help with that.
An obvious activity to get into is camping. There are plenty of great spots for it. But we’re not talking about the places with running water and electricity within five feet. To really benefit from camping, you need to go as wild as you can. You need to teach your family to create rope from nature, how useful a knife is for first aid and cooking and how to really thrive in the wild.
Traversing those waters
Being near water when out in the wild is important. Being able to move over it is even better. If cars and public transport fail, then water is one of the best ways to travel. Look up the best sit on top kayak and get practicing. It helps a lot that kayaking is one of the most fun ways to spend your time in the water.
When you’re not camping, considering taking the family to see some of the most beautiful environments that nature has to offer. But don’t just take the sights in. Learn them. Consider using apps to start identifying different plants. There are those with harmful properties as well as helpful ones. Not to mention all kinds of foodstuffs that could be foraged when needed. Make your hikes a much more educational experience. That knowledge of nature is something we’ve been lacking for far too long.
A good fishing trip
As important as nature is, it’s also important we learn how to sustain ourselves from it. Fishing has that obvious benefit. But it’s also a great way to teach your kids some important values. Values like patience and dedication. It also serves as a time to spend one-to-one with your kids. The intimate peace of a fishing trip can be a tremendous force in building lasting bonds.
Not every activity is best done in Spring and Summer. Camping is one thing, but it’s not enough in the Winter. Yet Winter can be one of the most magical times to get out in nature. So take your kids somewhere you can all practice building a Winter shelter together. Build yourself a cozy space where you can sit inside with your family and watch the landscape fill up with snow. The kids are guaranteed to love it and you’re guaranteed a skill that could one day be the deciding factor for your survival.
What we consider recreation was once essential for survival. If the world we know changes (as it has before and will again), they might be essential still. Make sure your family is as prepared as you.
This article first appeared at The Survival Place Blog: Family Fun That Doubles As The Preparedness Training You Need
By The Survival Place Blog
It goes without saying that we are living in uncertain times. Anyone who keeps their eye on the news will know that the human race hasn’t been so divided in most of our living memory. Of course, there are people around now who lived through World War 2, so it would be disrespectful to say things have never been so bad. But right now, it’s easy to envisage a scenario in which things escalate fast.
When you’re a prepper, you get used to people’s reactions to you telling them. For the longest time, it has been a case of glazed eyes, polite smile and “Oh! OK!” from the majority and “Tell me more” from a few. Perhaps for the first time for a lot of us, the latter reaction is becoming increasingly frequent. So if you’re speaking to a friend, family or a trusted acquaintance, what would you tell them is the most important thing to have should the worst happen?
We’re not talking about people becoming preppers here. Some people are too tied to their everyday homes to be ready for it yet. You won’t persuade everyone. But you can tell them a few things that they can put in their home, glove box or their boot. It’s a start – a kind of mini everyday carry.
As Much Drinking Water As They Can Fit
When things go down, infrastructure takes a hit early on. Some people even say that local authorities turn off water supplies so that they can put in place a state of emergency. True or not, it does mean you find yourself stuck without one of nature’s essentials. And that sends people straight to the grocery store to panic-buy as much as they can carry. So stocking up in advance is just common sense.
A Power-Outage Preparedness Kit
A generator would usually be best, but not everyone can be talked into buying one. If they feel safe in their home, they often don’t want to keep fuel around there, and if they don’t need a generator they don’t want one. Add to that the fact that fuel prices skyrocket in such times, and it takes commitment to make that jump. But a gas stove, heater and a flashlight like a Vultra Bright Torch can never be a bad idea.
A Means Of Self-Defense
Nothing divides preppers and non-preppers like getting armed. It’s a controversial issue, and if you want to help someone you won’t insist that they buy a firearm. It’s a good way to scare them away. However, non-lethal methods of protecting yourself are essential tools in the middle of unrest.
Along with the advice that you never engage someone unless there is no alternative, pepper spray is an option. It’s a safe, non-controversial means of keeping things from getting too hairy. If someone’s not ready to become a hero, do not advise them to try. That’s a situation that will end badly for someone – probably them.
Some people just aren’t of the mindset to go full prepper and bug out when the situation demands it. But you can help them stay safe – and let them know you’re at the end of a phone if they need more help.
This article first appeared at The Survival Place Blog: Essentials To Convince Your Non-Prepper Friends They Need
By Gaye Levy – Backdoor Survival
Three years ago, I wrote about our deteriorating economy. As I recall, the words were “current lousy economy”. The good news is that so far, a global economic meltdown has been abated. And the bad?
From what I can determine by simply opening my eyes and looking around, we are nowhere near the recovery that politicians and the economists in their hip pocket are touting. If anything, we are barreling forward to a collapse not unlike the big crash of 1929.
About the author:
Gaye Levy started Backdoor Survival so that she could share her angst and concern about our deteriorating economy and its impact on ordinary, middle-class folks. She also wanted to become a prepper of the highest order and to share her knowledge as she learned it along the way. On Backdoor Survival you will find survival and preparedness tools and tips for creating a self-reliant lifestyle through thoughtful prepping and optimism.
To read more from Gaye, visit her website, Backdoor Survival. You can also follow Gaye on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest or purchase her eBook, The Prepper’s Guide to Food Storage on Amazon.com.
Harnessing the sun’s power has become a popular trend in the last ten years and we now have a large array of options for powering our homes using solar power. Living off the grid requires a lot of work and innovation in order to reach a certain level of self-sufficiency. Things get easier if you … Read more…