Avoid being tracked be the tracker Forrest & Kyle “The Prepping Academy” Audio in player below! For a moment, imagine the worst case scenarios. Economic collapse, EMP, war, food shortages, and martial law. The government is now seizing “assets” via executive orders. Only now it’s understood that those assets may include you and your family. … Continue reading Avoid being tracked be the tracker!
This training manual on Advanced Surveillance covers all aspects of carrying out a physical covert surveillance in order to gather intelligence and evidence. This is an interesting topic to read about, but be warned, it takes a lot of effort and practice time to learn how to do this. While most of us don’t have […]
Re-Posted from MDSA Selco definitely gives you some points to ponder if you are a Survivalist planning on going it alone. Lonewolfing it definitely is a last resort. If you have no one else, well then you go it alone. If you have the option to have a partner or a group that you can […]
Just by going to websites like this, you are way ahead of the general populace. If you go ahead and actually prepare you are light-years ahead of most. If we have a large scale disaster, you may be in a position to trade some of your goods (and services) for items you may need. Here are some books to get you started in bartering.
Some of these books are more expensive than those in the second and first tiers, others are more technical, and some are supplemental texts that cover the same subjects in different ways. For whatever reason, I don’t find these books as essential as those on the first two lists, even though I bought some of them first….
Many studies have shown that students who are involved in extracurricular activities are far less likely to develop dangerous habits like smoking and drug abuse. Despite the heavy evidence supporting these facts, only 2.6 million of students from the ages 12-17 are actively enrolled in such activities. If you are looking for a good after-school […]
I subscribe to a Good, Better, Best philosophy when it comes to preparedness resources. I would rather have a good piece of equipment RIGHT NOW, than have plans to buy the best most ultimate piece of gear someday. Then as I learn to use that good piece of equipment, it helps me know what too look for when I have the resources to upgrade. Once you start to understand the fundamental skills contained in the non-fiction must have list, you may want to learn more details. This next list is a little more in depth. It will be followed by a third list at a later date.
Having “stuff” is cool, but too many people tend to rely on “stuff” in an emergency, when really, keeping your head and thinking your way through things works a lot better. (Ever watch MacGyver?) No preparedness plan is complete without knowledge, because somebody can take your stuff, but they cannot take your mind, (if YOU don’t lose it!).
Personal preparedness means different things depending on who you are and what your situation is. To an inhabitant of the Florida Keys, preparedness means having items to outlast a hurricane. To a city dweller, preparedness might be having a can of mace in her purse. To a survivalist, preparedness might mean having a semi trailer […]
Re-Post from MDSA While in conversation with a friend the other night, he mentioned the two previous posts that were published on this blog, and asked if more topics could be discussed. I advised him that there were more in the works, and it was just time constraints that limited their release. Today we will talk […]
I watched a video earlier this week (from May 2016) that just reinforced my belief that the majority of the nation’s overt “militia” groups are just in it for the kudos of “Look how ‘Operator’ I am.”, or “Look at our ‘bad ass’ training.”. Why else would any group in this country calling itself a […]
Imagine that, a FORMER BooHOo Dept of Defense official by the name of Rosa Brooks suggests that a military coup is the only option left to oust “One of the most divisive Presidents in American history”. Here’s a clue FORMER official Brooks. President Trump is not being divisive, he’s doing what he told us he’d […]
Re-Post from MDSA In the last post we discussed personal protective equipment for the nuclear environment. This post concerns having a way to communicate a nuclear explosion in your area via HAM or whatever other commo device you might have available. This is modeled after the the military’s NBC reporting format, but is different and […]
Experienced martial artist and veteran correction officer Sgt. Rory Miller distills what he has learned from jailhouse brawls, tactical operations and ambushes to explore the differences between martial arts and the subject martial arts were designed to deal with: Violence. In Meditations on Violence Sgt. Miller introduces the myths, metaphors and expectations that most martial […]
Re-Posted from the MDSA blog _________________________________________________________________ Most who know me, know that I am staunchly against most people planning to just “Bug Out”to the mountains when the SHTF. I advise people to plan on “Bugging In” where they are, or “Bugging To” a pre-planned location. The are a number of reasons why I’m against a “Bug Out”, […]
I can tell you from experience that this post from “Task and Purpose” is pretty spot on concerning leadership through anger. During a conversation with one of my junior Sergeants years ago, I became aware that I was actually “doing it right” in regards to the method of leadership and discipline that I used. He […]
The crazy story of the man who fought for Finland, the Nazis, and US Army Special Forces Larry Thorne enlisted in the U.S. Army as a private in 1954, but he was already a war hero. That’s because his real name was Lauri Törni, and he had been fighting the Soviets for much of his adult life. […]
This will be very a very brief post. I was asked a few weeks ago what my thoughts were on various speed drill that different instructors were using with the rifle and pistol. My friend asked what I thought of one from a particular instructor concerning the rifle. My response was what I have been […]
One of the toughest and most rewarding jobs you can have is raising a child from infancy to adulthood, and finding out that you “Did it right”. When my children were born, the biggest thing I remember thinking was how much greater a sense of love and protectiveness I felt for them than I had […]
While having a conversation the other night with a friend, he said “I keep getting emails and messages from people saying ‘Thank God we have some time to breathe now.’.”. This was in regards to the election of Donald Trump to the Presidency. My response to my friend was, “They think they have time to […]
While teaching a “Defense against the knife” segment in a Defensive Tactics class yesterday, I was asked, “What should I do if I also have a knife when I’m attacked by a knife wielding opponent?”. I said ‘Run!”. The response was,”But I have a knife.”. At that point, I said, “Look, this is not a […]
I recently was made aware of an experienced (no mil background but apparently he’s just always looking for the next “One” to follow) “Rookie” that had all manner of “good” (not) things to say about the “Neighborhood Protection Team” concept. He was poo pooing the notion that an NPT could be formed during or right […]
Trapping in the Wild! Josh “7 P’s of survival” This show in player below! Listen in as we talk about all things trapping! Brian King is with us to explore the entire spectrum of trapping. We cover training, gear, selection of grounds, reading sign, lure and how to make it. Also discussed, setting a line, harvesting … Continue reading Trapping in the Wild
Grid Down Hospital: Part VI – Patient Assessment Overview Posted on November 1, 2016 The latest from the team: Patient Assessment Overview Entire medical text volumes have been written about a full patient assessment, and what it should encompass. This will not be one of them, but it will serve as a reasonable overview for your […]
Barry lays out a key part in the basics of the defense in a group setting. _________________________________________________________________ Listening Posts and Observation Posts (Guest Article) SFC Steven M Barry USA RET | October 24, 2016 Barry is retired Special Forces, Traditional Catholic, monarchist, historian, Scholastic, counter-Reformationist, and counter-revolutionary. Introduction During a recent correspondence with Tom Baugh […]
I wanted to go back to CSAT this year but with the travel time and expense it was not very realistic. I was going to take a local course but after doing the intro I wasn’t very impressed. It was definitely old guy wannna be Jeff Cooper stuff. Not bad per se but very dated. Then I saw the Clandestine Carry Pistol offering in north east MO and jumped on it. Fortunately everything worked out OK and I was able to attend.
I am going to make a big fat disclaimer that everything said about this course is from my memory and notes. Not trying to put words in Johns mouth or say there are quotes here. If something sounds weird or stupid or wrong any fault is entirely my own.
The class goals were as follows:
1- Hit what you aim at.
2- Make rapid good decisions under stress.
3- Draw your pistol under realistic conditions.
4- Defend your pistol and fight to employ it.
This course was different from CSAT’s Tactical Pistol Operator Course and probably most other comparable tactical type handgun courses in a couple of significant ways.
First the accuracy standard was significantly higher. The goal is head shots on demand at realistic pistol ranges (Say 10-15 meters). We shot at index cards the entire time (mostly 3×5 and occasionally [think we ran out of 3×5’s] at the end 4×6) to replicate the vital zone in the head. This was done for a three reasons. First the realistic chance that a person is either wearing an SVEST in which case punching a round into their torso is a bad idea. Second the in my opinion much more probable chance they are wearing body armor. Third is the classic aim small and miss small.
This was a significant difference from my CSAT experience where we shot predominantly at a 6×13 vital zone. Suffice to say this is a big difference. Also that I have been slacking on my training was a factor. I blew a lot of shots initially because I was relatively speaking jerking the trigger and rushing to get better times. That got slightly better over the class. Honestly I think I figured out the trigger piece shooting the dot drill at the very end of class.
Why is this different from other classes? Some of it is conceptual and some of it is about the fact that shooting at small targets is well humbling. Considering a large portion of running training classes is getting people to feel good and want to come back this is not a move calculated to be popular. John doesn’t give a crap. He says the unpopular thing because it is what he believes. This is consistent throughout Johns methodology and teaching.
My personal belief is this is valid. You need that capability. Whether you should shoot for the head or not is context dependent. Obviously an S vest or body armor dictate a head shot. For a meth head in a t shirt bullets in the sternum are probably just fine.
The other way this class is different is that we shot EVERYTHING from concealment. I think this is totally valid in the context of this course and realistically any handgun training. Excluding law enforcement who carry openly I think this is the right answer for everybody. Why, well that is how the vast majority of us carry handguns. The only real exception would be home defense and that is mostly going to start with the gun in your hand anyway as it was either on your belt or cached somewhere. So doing all draws and reloads from concealment is the right answer.
Why don’t other classes do this? Like the 3×5 card accuracy standard this is not mirrored throughout the training world. Seeing guys wearing big ole paddded ‘war belts’ and OWB duty type rigs is quite common. One class I looked at taking did not even allow IWB holsters! First it adds a layer of complexity. You need to clear the cover garment for every draw or reload. You need to clear it to reholster.Second and I think more significantly it makes peoples performance as measured by time worse. How much time it adds to your draw could certainly be debated but probably .2 of a second or so. When instructors want students to feel like they improved (so they want to come back)having them get times that make them happy is a big deal. Sammy Seal got my draw to first shot down to 1.XX makes a guy happy and want to come back. Getting a slower time is well not going to make people feel as good. The last reason I think other classes have people using LEO/ military type set ups is what John so nicely calls ‘ballistic masturbation’. People want to wear cool guy gear, shoot a lot of bullets, be told they met a standard and get a certificate. I’m not knocking anyone getting training but the ‘tactical dude ranch’ angle is definitely there. You can take classes where you will shoot from helicopters and do fake ass tactical missions. There are probably worse ways to spend your money but saying shooting a rifle from a helicopter is in any way applicable to my life as a non helicopter owning person is ridiculous. This is another way John Mosby’s course is in my opinion very realistic and practical for a normal guy who carries a gun to defend himself.
I am going to do at least two more posts on this topic. The first will be a discussion of accuracy as it relates to time and distance. The second will be an overview of the course material, what I learned, etc. After that I have at least one or two posts in my head that come more from discussions we had in down time BS sessions.
Our Group’s Official Forum: http://eighteenthcenturylivinghistory.freeforums.org/
You will also find links to other groups in other areas & countries on our forum.
Get it while you can _________________ TOWR Basic Intro to Radio and Comms Class, 5 November by Kit Perez | Oct 11, 2016 The Order of The White Rose (TOWR) will be running a 1 Day Basic Introduction to Radio and Communication Class November 5th 2016 in the Greater Seattle Area. Class will be 6 […]
Stressing that you get as much first aid and patient care training and info before SHTF, cannot be over emphasized. _________________________________________________________________ Grid Down Hospital – Part I Posted on October 6, 2016 Grid Down Hospital Introduction Welcome to the first of what I hope will be many (or at least a few) articles on running a […]
I had occasion recently to once again read over the “Militia Standards and Principles of the Light Foot”, I was once again struck by the lack of operational understanding that has been presented by a guy who apparently is only good at the “cut and paste”, and not so good at the occasional”This sounds about right”to fill in […]
I was asked the other day if I thought a semi auto rifle like the AR or AK was a good “Anti riot” gun. My response was that although either of those rifles would do fine, I was a bigger fan of the 12 gauge shotgun, specifically one designed with an extended magazine, rifle […]
While in conversation with a friend the other night, we were discussing an ongoing thread at a certain forum where I had mentioned the reality of the size of your security patrols outside of your perimeter. My premise was simple. If you had eight adults (you’re very lucky if you do) who can patrol, perform […]
As most of you know, I’m not real big on posting AAR’s from my classes. Because I do this part time, I simply don’t feel the need to advertise much if any. My info is out there, and you can read about the type of classes I teach from previous stuff here on the blog. […]
As a lot of you know, there’s been a big hubbub of late over the fact that Max Velocity has gone to a paid forum for those who read what he writes at his website. As I told Max in a recent email, my original thought on this was that it was ridiculous, and made no […]
Every September is the official National Preparedness Month in the U.S. If you don’t have one of these special dates in your country, you can either establish one for yourself and your family or begin a letter-writing and petition campaign to convince your government that one is needed.
Over the years of encouraging people to get prepared for everyday emergencies and worst case scenarios, I’ve always known that most people give the idea lip service. Knowing the importance of “getting prepped” is not very different from knowing that it’s better to be a healthy weight, eat right, drink lot of water, and exercise. We all KNOW that stuff. We just don’t all DO it.
And right there is what makes the difference between a family who is ready to quickly and quietly load up the car with supplies, the kids, and the pets and hightail it away from danger to one who either scrambles at the last minute, deep in the black zone and forgetting what to pack, like these folks did during the huge Fort MacMurray fires. Worse are those who are totally unaware until there IS no escape. Honestly? Most people fall into those 2 latter categories.
I don’t want even one of my readers to be caught unaware by fire, flood, extreme weather, or any other type of disaster. (Take my 5-question Threat Assessment Quiz here to figure out what are the most likely dangers you face.) This blog is chock full of over 1700 articles, my family survival manual, Survival Mom, should be on every family’s bookshelf (no kidding!), and my second book, Emergency Evacuations: Get Out Fast When it Matters Most, details exactly what, when, where, and how you should evacuate from a dangerous situation.
I’ve worked hard over the years to provide you with the very best advice I could, but this last spring, I realized it hasn’t been enough. Most of you know you should prep, you read about prepping, maybe put a few things in place, and then get distracted by life, as I did myself earlier this year. When that happens, you still are not ready, especially for a true worst case scenario. And what could those be? We don’t have to look very far to see examples all over the world — and please don’t lapse into normalcy bias and think, “It could never happen here.”
- Venezuela, once the most prosperous country in South America, utterly collapses in economic turmoil, with empty food shelves, food riots, and desperate people.
- Random terrorist attacks in places most would have considered safe.
- A rising tide of anger and unrest, resulting in extreme and violent riots that sometimes last for days.
- A government that can be slow to respond to true and desperate calamities, such as the flooding in Louisiana this summer. Did you realize this disaster is the third worst to hit our country after Katrina and Hurricane Sandy? I’ll bet you didn’t, since only scant attention was given in mainstream media. Federal response was described as “pitiful”.
I’m determined to never be one of the hungry, desperate moms lining up, or rioting!, just to get some bottled water and a bag of groceries. I’m far too independent-minded for that, and I’ll bet you are, too.
The Prepping Intensive
So, here’s what I’ve done so that you and your family are prepared for all types of scenarios. I created a 10-week live course, complete with actual classes, assignments, assessments, and…accountability! If you’re serious about getting yourself, your family, and your home prepped, you can’t afford to NOT take this class.
The timing is perfect! Not only is it the start of National Preparedness Month but the kids, and grandkids, are back in school. It really is the perfect time to direct your attention to something of vital and life-saving importance — and, you can teach what you learn to your other family members and friends.
The course covers just about everything:
- Water and sanitation
- A complete food storage education
- Power outage readiness
- Natural disaster preparedness
- Survival when you’re away from home
- Health and fitness for survival
- Setting up a survival retreat no matter where you are
- Worst case scenarios
We’ve covered all the bases but then we’ve brought in some amazing guest speakers for you:
- Dr. Arthur T. Bradley — This guy wrote the book on EMP preparedness, literally.
- Merriwether — A nationally known foraging expert and author
- Jim Cobb — Author of 9 prepper books, ranging from home security to surviving the end of the world
- Selco — Bosnian war survivor who write about his experiences on SHTFSchool
- Fernando Aguirre (FerFAL) — Lived through Argentina’s economic collapses and tells it like it is
- Patrice Lewis — Author, blogger, and expert homesteader. She contributed this very popular article to my blog.
We have more speakers scheduled, but you get the idea. If you’re wondering if you’ll be able to attend all these classes, each one is recorded and will be available to you, 24/7.
Here’s the Sneak Peek
I don’t expect you to plunk down your registration fee without actually seeing what you’re buying. I’ve written too many articles about the importance of frugal living to want you to do that! So, if you would like to see a sample of one of our training modules, here you go!
And, we’ve expanded just a bit to offer more than a 10 week course (which you have access to for a year!). We’ve also created a separate Student Center for members only. This separate site has a forum, webinar recording archive, a Book of the Month Club (all prepper/apocalyptic/survival books — I promise!), and coming this fall, mini-courses you can take any time, 24/7. You get a 1-year membership to the Student Center with your class registration!
Check out the Student Center at this Sneak Peek link. Since this is all so new, we have a lot of room to grow, with lots of ideas for things that will help you get fully prepped. Just talking and thinking about it will never help you and your family survive.
We start on 9/11
Someone asked me if our start date of September 11, was significant in any way. The answer is no! We want you to take this course and take action, every single week, and then take a break just before Thanksgiving and the holiday season arrive.
However, this doesn’t give you a whole lot of time to sign up. Registration closes for good on September 18.
If you’ve ever wished you could just TALK with someone about prepping and ask all your crazy questions, get expert advice on your own special circumstances — this was designed for you. Not only am I very active in the course, teaching a handful of classes myself, but Daisy Luther, author, blogger, and homesteader, is right there, too.
We want to help you get fully prepared for an uncertain future. Join our group of students today and start working through our Student Orientation to be ready for launch day, September 11. This is the perfect time for this!
*The course is fully detailed at this link, Preppers University.
P.S. If you can’t join us this time around, we have another session starting in January. Sign up here to get updates whenever new classes are starting AND to get our Prepping To Do List every month!
Purchases, Training, and Mindset! Forrest & Kile “The Prepping Academy” Thank you for tuning in to listen to “The Prepping Academy.” We’ve had some amazing guest the past two weeks. If you missed out on our shows with “Survivor Jane” and “Skinny Medic” be sure to head over to the prepping academy to listen to the … Continue reading Purchases, Training, and Mindset!
Over the years as a prepper, I’ve noticed the huge increase in INFORMATION. It’s everywhere. Blogs, forums, websites, products, books upon books, and even scams. Preppers have never had more INFORMATION, and yet, preppers have also never had a more confusing maze to wander through.
Freeze dried food? Dehydrated? Is canned food okay, but what if the ‘Best by’ date has expired? What about nutrients, calories, and servings?
Which water filter? There are so many and comparing microns and the number of gallons a filter can process — which one is best?
Then there’s the rule of back-ups. You should always have a back-up to your back-ups, but where does that end? A person could become a hoarder just by adding back-ups to their bacck-ups to their back-ups!
So, this summer when I had a chance to attend a few webinars with the new Preppers University and check out their Prepping Intensive course, I thought, “This is the missing piece!” We preppers have more than enough information to be ready for a full-blown nuclear war, but how many of us have actually followed through, day after day? For some, it’s been a lifestyle, ingrained since childhood, but for most of us, we’re new to the prepping mindset.
In my case, I admit that i get sidetracked by work, projects to do around the house, helping my wife with the kids and their activities — you name it. Weeks can go by without me consciously doing much prepping. Thank goodness my wife usually stays on track with food storage and keeping our bug out bags and gear up to date.
Enter the 10-week Prepping Intensive. Reading through the course outline, pretty much everything is covered:
- Water and Sanitation
- Food Storage
- Power Outage Readiness — Dr. Arthur T. Bradley is a guest speaker. Pretty impressive.
- Natural Disasters
- Survival Away From Home
- Health & Fitness
- Setting Up a Survival Retreat
- Worst Case Scenarios
There’s even a week where students are given their choice of several drills to run through. The one I picked was “No water for 24 hours”. Having a week of drills about halfway through the course seemed pretty smart to me — you can check on your progress and know what still needs to be done.
In the students-only area, I read through weekly To Do lists, the Weekly Challenges, a few of the assessments students fill out, and then saw the schedule of webinars — at least 2 each week. I know there’s a lot more that I haven’t included here, but this website will give you the complete overview.
The course isn’t cheap. It’s priced at $169 for the 10 weeks, but when I saw how I could actually talk with people like Dr. Bradley or someone like Selco, who writes about his experiences during the Bosnian war, or FerFAL who talks about living through Argentina’s various economic collapses — I’m not sure how to put a price tag on that.
Lisa Bedford, who has helped me here at Preparedness Advice, is The Survival Mom and is one of the founders of Preppers University, along with Daisy Luther. Daisy has written the book about water for preppers and she has 2 websites: DaisyLuther.com and TheOrganicPrepper. Both these ladies also teach some of the webinars.
Lisa and Daisy gave me a coupon code good for $20 off the registration fee. If you take a look at the course and decide to go for it, use code FANDF20 for the discount. I’m not an affiliate with them — I’m just passing along this code.
This is something new in the world of prepping and maybe some people won’t want the restrictions of weekly assignments or the accountability of being part of a group, but to me, this really is what a lot of preppers have been needing.
When our young teen son told us he wanted to join the Civil Air Patrol (CAP), I thought my wife was going to lock him up in a cage. She had visions of him marching off to war on his 18th birthday and her mom instinct kicked in, I guess.
A year later, she is proud of her newly promoted Technical Sergeant and all the training he has received in just little more than a year.
Civil Air Patrol is the auxiliary arm of the U.S. Air Force and is run by volunteers. The organization is open to boys and girls starting at age 12. Adults can also join as Senior Members and receive much of the same training available to the younger members. In fact, Senior Members are very welcome to join as many of them become regular attendees at meetings and volunteer at events to help coordinate.
Just some of the training available in CAP is an initial Encampment, which is their version of boot camp. My son learned teamwork, critical thinking, how to work and think under pressure, and a more regimented life than he experiences at home. When we picked him up from Encampment, he was beaming. My wife had worried that being yelled at by his senior officers would be traumatic, but the opposite happened. He thrived under pressure. As a dad, that was good to see.
Since then, he’s gone on to get training in basic and intermediate first aid, ground search and rescue, building wilderness shelters, knot tying, rapelling, water purification, setting up campsites, campfire cooking, and much, much more. He’s flown in a tiny 4-seater airplane and has crawled across a river, hanging from a rope.
I’m impressed with the variety of training CAP offers, and many classes teach skills and knowledge important for survival and preparedness. One series of classes teaches the basics of air traffic control, another teaches communications. Wilderness First Aid, wilderness survival, emergency response training — these are just a very, very few of the trainings and classes offered, and all at very low prices.
Our son spent a full week in training for ground search and rescue, and we paid just a little over $200. He came home a little more confident, a lot more informed about search and rescue, and covered from ankle to waist in chigger bites from a nighttime crawl through the woods. He had a blast and was darn proud of those bites!
If you’re looking for some excellent, high quality training in numerous areas related to survival and prepping, take a look at Civil Air Patrol. Along with what you get out of the deal, you’ll end up trained to help out as a volunteer in all types of natural disasters and other emergencies.
Pigs are easy to keep in with an electric fence, but training them to respect it is critical.
When we start new piglets here on our farm, we always take them through a training process. Without training them, you will end up with pigs that constantly get out. That’s never a good way to keep your neighbors happy.
Keep in mind: An electric fence is a mental barrier, and not a physical barrier. A physical barrier is something like a hog panel or woven wire fence. They physically can’t get through it.
Two little wires would never keep a pig in, but once you train them that no matter what happens they can’t get through it, they’ll respect the boundaries and stay right where you want them.
Pigs will typically get out of an electric fence for a couple of reasons:
1) The fence charger does not carry enough power to cause avoidance.
2) The wires are not at the proper height.
Occasionally, you get a pig that runs through the fence accidentally and then figures out how to slip the wire. If you don’t put a stop to it immediately, then they will get out anytime they feel like exploring.
By slipping the wire, I mean putting their head down and bolting under the wire. They usually get right up to the fence and drop down and squeal as they keep right on going!
Your only choice is to re-train them, or they will teach the rest and then you’re in for a long chase. Worse yet, they could escape and cause an accident on the road.
How to Start the Training
The critical part of the training is to allow the pigs to have contact with the hot wire but never be able to get past it or go through the wire.
If all you had was a wire with no physical barrier behind it, then the pig would likely run through it the first time he gets shocked and your fence would be torn. If they repeat that a few times, forget ever keeping pigs in with only electric fence wire.
So to avoid the pigs ever learning they can get through the electric wire, we put them in a training pen.
A good example would be a pen made out of hog panels, with a couple of hot wires around the inside at the proper height, which is nose height for pigs. Make sure the pen is big enough that they can get well away from the electric wire.
If the pen is fairly small, then you’ll have better luck with a hot wire on one or two sides instead of all four. They need a safe area to escape until they make the connection that it is the little wire that bites — and only if they touch it.
If a pig gets shocked in front of the eyes, then 99 times out of 100 he’ll back up. But if he gets “hit” behind the eyes, he will lounge forward.
So we train in the pen with a hot wire and a physical barrier. Then if he lounges forward, he can’t get through the physical barrier. He quickly learns to get away from the hot wire, and not to lounge through it.
I’ve had older pigs that had no electric fence experience get into the wire and run down the fence for 15 or 20 feet determined to get through it. It didn’t take them long to figure out they were in a losing battle!
Tie flags on the wire every three feet or so. Pigs will learn to associate the flags with the shock and avoid them. When you put them out on pasture, use the same flags and they won’t even test the fence because they “know” they can’t get past it.
I have found a good flagging material is surveyor’s tape. It’s bright orange or pink and you can get it by the roll at any home improvement store. It lasts for a long time, and the colorful tape keeps you from running into it with equipment or your bare leg!
How Much Power Do You Need?
There are many fence chargers on the market, but a good rule of thumb is to purchase one that powers two or three times as much fence as you think you’ll need. You usually end up running more fence than you ever planned to in the beginning anyway, so get a charger once and be done with it.
You want a charger that is low impedance and at least three joules.
I currently use a 15-joule charger, and even my old sows do not fool with the fence. It can stand heavy weed pressure or even have a deer run through it and be on the ground — and pigs stay put.
We use two strands of wire for almost everything except with sows, and many times only a single strand.
Once the pigs are trained, if the fence is hot enough and visible to the pigs, you can relax knowing they will stay where you put them.
Do you have any advice for training pigs with an electric fence? Share your advice in the section below:
I didn’t grow up with guns in the house because my family didn’t live in the continental United States. Due to my Dad’s job, we were all over the globe and living in places that didn’t exactly have Second Amendment rights. However, during my high school years, two of my older buddies were finally of age and could legally go through the process to purchase firearms. We started target shooting. Not advanced shooting classes, but just shooting for fun.
Living near the ocean, we would sometimes go out to remote places where we could shoot into the water. We’d throw empty gallon milk jugs into the water and then do our best to shoot at them while they were bobbing on the waves. This, by the way, wasn’t exactly legal! At other times, we went out into the boonies and shoot at anything we could: soda cans, bowling pins, and even lizards. Those were not easy to hit! They were skinny and constantly moving!
My first advanced shooting class
During this time, I didn’t have any formal training. I just went shooting for the pure fun of it and the personal challenge of getting better each time. That changed during my college years, though, when I was allowed, as a civilian, to participate in a semester-long police firearms training academy. The other civilian was my lizard-shooting buddy, Paul.
It was during this semester that I learned, in a more formal setting, the fundamentals of shooting, and how to effectively shoot shotguns and pistols. This was probably the best firearms education a person could ever have. Our group went out every single Saturday for four straight months. We spent 8 hours on the range, getting about an hour of instruction and then 6-7 hours of shooting drills. I don’t think I even ate lunch on those days! I would be starving on the drive home.
Our 2 instructors were Mr. Hill, with a background in the prison systems and the main firearms instructor for this shooting academy, and Mr. Dennis, a former police/narcotics officer. Mr. Hill was a behemoth of a man and very effective with a shotgun, in particular. Both these instructors lived to shoot — maybe they were married and had families, but guns and shooting seemed to be their first loves. They were determined that not a single student would leave the class without being highly competent in shooting skills and comfortable with their “use of force” decisions.
The muscle memory developed from dozens and dozens of hours of (mostly) handgun shooting remains with me and is ingrained in my body, even after all these years. Techniques I learned to improve my accuracy are still effective, and I’ve taught them to my wife and kids. I feel very, very comfortable with a firearm in my hands, but it wasn’t until I took another class many years later that I was challenged on a whole other level.
Advanced shooting class with a military twist
This time it was, again, my buddy Paul who invited me to join him in an all-day class on a military base where he worked. The invite was irresistible. I would be spending the day with a group of Air Force combat personnel who were preparing to be deployed and were required to take this class in urban warfare. Naturally, I jumped at the chance, and nobody questioned my presence or credentials. I kept my mouth shut — definitely a don’t ask, don’t tell situation!
For the first time in my life, I was in a scenario in which live fire was being used and I wasn’t exactly behind the firing line. There was no firing line! We performed exercises in which we were constantly moving and engaging targets, tactical reloading while moving, maintaining communications with team members, and doing all of this under non-stop pressure by the instructors who were screaming and cussing and deriding us. One guy’s gun jammed and the diatribe by the instructor was merciless and, I have to admit, very funny at the time.
Initially, I had the jitters because this was very exciting to me and the setting unfamiliar. I had always wanted to be in a scenario like this — but without being a target by a real criminal with a real gun! Been there, done that.
After a few minutes, my mind and body became accustomed to the adrenaline and excitement. My nerves calmed, my breathing slowed down and became more regulated, and I was able to make the quick decisions and reactions being demanded of me. By the end of that day, even though I had been shooting for years and had received so much instruction and practice, I knew my shooting expertise had reached a new dimension.
Without the many years of casual and formal practice and instruction, there’s no way I would have been ready for such an intense training experience. A few of the Air Force guys in the group left that day realizing they needed more practice. When I think about the low training requirements of nearly all law enforcement officers — this is what they actually need, each and every year as our cities and streets become more dangerous and hostile to police officers, in particular.
Reasons every shooter needs advanced classes
So, why must you take advanced shooting classes? In a real life situation in which self-defense is necessary, you need enough practice hours behind you so that muscle memory is there each and every time you pick up that gun. You won’t be standing behind a line with your pistol on a bench and with a motionless paper target. You need to spend hours under some kind of pressure, so you become comfortable with all aspects of shooting. You’ll have to make lightning quick, on the spot decisions. Everything about shooting, from stance to grip to aim should all be so familiar that the only decision to make is whether or not to pull the trigger.
In my case, my upbringing and where I lived in the world was a little different. I happened to be at the right place and, apparently, had a connection or two that allowed some unique experiences to come my way. However, a good shooting range will offer advanced classes, and I encourage you to take as many as possible. When you find a good instructor, take every class he or she offers. Classes you might consider are concealed carry classes (if allowed in your state), defensive handgun, defensive shotgun, and tactical firearm classes. Courses that integrate mindset, marksmanship, and individual/team tactics under realistic conditions will not fail you.
Prepare to be challenged in every way possible. Your physical endurance will be tested. You’ll learn a lot about yourself and how you react under extreme duress — something that most people never experience in their entire lives. One more tip: be sure to get a good night’s rest the night before. You’ll need it.
Disclaimer: Know your local, state, and applicable federal laws. Shooting at lizards may not be legal where you live and I don’t recommend it anyway!
A long time back, when we would practice CQB, there were two varieties. We had the standard “Toss in a frag and hose the room down on full auto” CQB, and there was “Surgical/Precision” CQB where the shooters use a flashbang and took semi-automatic fired aimed shots at the upper chest or head for hostage […]
It is important that everyone in your family or in your group understands not only the world we live in but also that threatening events can happen in a flash. Will you be prepared?
So I was getting post info together for my thoughts on the Dallas shooting last week, and I read this headline, “BREAKING: 6 Police Officers Shot – 3 Confirmed Dead In Baton Rouge, LA”. I find the irony of “Patriots” who look like “Operators” in their FB profile pic, but continual echo the mantra “The […]
What Brushbeater says here is dead balls accurate. If a student comes to me after a class and asks advice about something having to do with what was learned, it is a responsibility to help them with the issue. As many will attest, I have spent hours on the phone, helping former students (or even […]
In a recent “Testing” class (class 3 of the “Bushbastard” series) We had five individuals earn the “Bushbastard” tab. Is this a big deal when we compare it to guys who have earned things like “Ranger” tabs, “Special Forces” tabs, etc.? No. Are they now “Supah Dupah ‘Tres’ Militia Commandos”, prepared to defeat the […]
A friend sent me this info. Looks like good stuff. _________________________________________________________________ The Difference Between a FairyTale and a War Story: One Begins with, “Once Upon A Time,” and the other begins with, “This Ain’t No Jedburger Shit…“ Prediction: When a certain “Jedburgher Academy Head Master” discovers the recent TV Series, “The Devil’s Brigade,” perusal of […]
Since “Guerrillamerica” is no longer up, I asked Sam Culper if he would write some “guest post” articles that were along the “Intel” line, and his expertise (Some claim Intel expertise, Culper has the boafides). Here’s the first, enjoy. ________________________________________________________________ Intelligence is about supporting the warfighter. The Intelligence Cycle, our intelligence requirements, our collection methods, […]
Just in case you missed it…and you probably did…FEMA Will Hold A Drill To Prepare For A 9.0 Cascadia Subduction Zone Earthquake And Tsunami next week.
Just in case you missed it…and you probably did…there is a gargantuan, 700 mile long quake-maker referred to as the Cascadia Subduction Zone that rests at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean off the coast of the American northwest where the seabed meets the North American tectonic plate. According to experts, this behemoth has the potential to unleash the worst natural disaster in the history of North America should it rupture entirely.
The “Cascadia” has already shown it’s power and it has a violent history. According to this CNN story, on January 26, 1700, Cascadia unleashed one of the biggest quakes in world history that triggered a tsunami so large that it raced across the Pacific and swallowed coastal villages in Japan. You’ve probably heard of the San Andreas fault, but it’s nothing compared to the monster that is the CSZ. The CSZ has the potential to rip off a 9.0 magnitude quake, almost 30 times more energetic than anything the San Andreas could unleash, not to mention the subsequent tsunami that would be generated at the same time. The CSZ holds so much more power because it is a subduction fault, whereas the San Andreas is a slip fault. With a slip fault, the two land masses slide past one another causing an earthquake that is fairly short in duration. In a subduction zone, one of the earth’s tectonic plates is being forced downward into the earth as the colliding plate slides over the top of the first plate. These plates get “hung up” occasionally allowing stress to build up along the fault as the top plate is pulled down with the lower plate. When the stress becomes too great, the top plate “snaps” back to it’s normal position releasing a tremendous….almost incomprehensible….amount of energy. This snapping action creates a terrifyingly violent shaking that can last three to five minutes, far longer than the 15-30 seconds of shaking you may be used to in other earthquakes in California. As if the shaking weren’t enough, as the plate “snaps” back it simultaneously lifts the ocean above it triggering a devastating tsunami. The last time the Cascadia ruptured, the coast of the North American plate dropped about 5 feet! Think for just a second and imagine the size and unrelenting ferocity of the tsunami wave that would have been created by that type of land mass dislocation.
According to the official flyer for the event, “Over 50 counties, plus major cities, tribal nations, state and federal agencies, private sector businesses, and non-governmental organizations across three states – Washington, Oregon, and Idaho – will be participating in the four-day Cascadia Rising 2016 Exercise.”
U.S Northern Command is getting in on the act as well, holding five other exercises simultaneously. The final Cascadia Rising 2016 drill plan tells us those five exercises are entitled “Ardent Sentry 2016″, “Vigilant Guard”, “Special Focus Exercise”, “Turbo Challenge” and “Joint Logistics Over-The-Shore”, all of which focus on a scenario that involves a magnitude 9.0 earthquake along the Cascadia Subduction Zone followed by a giant tsunami that could displace up to a million people from northern California to southern Canada.
The United States is a continental country and the Cascadia Subduction Zone represents a North American sized disaster and national threat. Even if you do not live in the great northwest or have family that does, it would be wise to maintain a wary eye cast in that direction. When the CSZ fully ruptures again, even if you don’t feel the shaking, every American will feel the impacts.
When confronted with survival situation human beings have the potential to overcome challenges, beat incredible odds, and come out a survivor. However, in survival situations, many people fail to survive not for lack of physical ability or resources, but because of lack of will. Survival is taking any situation, accepting it, and trying to improve it, while sustaining your life until you can get out of the situation. Survival is a state of mind.
Here is a list of 12 reason why you can fail to survive
- Failure to plan – you need to take the time to survey the situation and make a plan and then follow it.
- Panic – Avoid becoming irrational, frantic and disorganized.
- Inaction – You do nothing; you fail to take action because of fear, carelessness or laziness.
- Loneliness – You are overwhelmed by a feeling of helplessness and loneliness, resulting in panic, fear and inaction. In today’s world, we are used to having contact with people on a continuing basis, even if only by phone. Loneliness is something that we are not used too.
- Low self-esteem – you lack confidence in your abilities, so you fail to take action.
- Lack of teamwork – you fail to work others or let rivalry affect you.
- Lack of training – you don’t know what to do, so you do nothing or you do the wrong thing.
- Prolonged exposure or fatigue – you lose your will to survive from lack of food, water, sleep or exposure to weather, heat or cold.
- Inability to endure – you lack the physical stamina, due to lack of conditioning or poor health.
- Lack of faith – you need to have faith in something beyond yourself. In my case, that is a belief in God, and the power of prayer.
- A poor attitude – your attitude will affect your own ability to survive plus that of others in your group.
- Fear – Don’t let your imagination run wild. Expect fear and learn to recognize it. Don’t be ashamed of any fears you may have, we all have some. Control your fears don’t let them control you. A hero is someone who overcomes their fears.
All of the above can affect you in a negative way, but there are ways to overcome them. One of the best is training and knowledge. Having the confidence to know what needs to be done and doing it is a great way to overcome the negatives on the above list. A powerful desire to continue living is necessary. The mind has the power to will the body to extraordinary feats. You must believe in your ability to survive. Here is a link to a previous post I wrote on Will You Eat a Rat to Survive? Don’t be one of the people who fail to survive because they gave up from lack of will.
The post 12 Reasons Why Well Trained and Equipped People Fail to Survive appeared first on Preparedness Advice Blog.
This video is about Leveling Up To A Trauma Kit from a standard individual first aid kit (IFAK). Here’s a list of what is in this kit:
In the Boo Boo kit:
Triple antibiotic salve
Individual eye wash (x4)
Rolled gauze (x4)
OLEAS modular pressure bandage
Bloodstopper Compress Dressing
SAM splint (1.5 ft)
3×3 gauze pads
Gerber foldimg knife
8-10 feet duct tape
6″ light stick
Self-adhering wrap (x2)
Celox z-fold hemostatic gauze (10 ft)
Although I have no where near the experience of “Buckshot, I will concur that in my own experience, the Conibear 110 is one of the most effective and versatile traps made. I still have 110’s, that I bought at 15 years old when I started trapping, that are still as trapline worthy as they ever were. My food gathering kit consist of small and large game snares and 110 Conibears for the very reasons “Buckshot” discusses.
Bruce “Buckshot” Hemming Sends, On Trapping
Trapping ‘Small Deer’ For Survival
By Bruce “Buckshot” Hemming
Trapping means different things to people. Some think it’s easy to catch tons of food and other have tried and failed and think it’s some mystery that is too complicated to figure out.
Like anything you do, there is a learning curve. I remember helping one young man years ago after he bought a bunch of equipment and said now ‘I am a trapper’. He failed miserably his first year. He emailed for help after getting a book and couple of videos, and his next year he took 44 raccoons.
I bring this up so people understand there are the basics you have to learn and even after learning this practice, you still need time in the field. Actual hands-on experience is the best teacher.
You have to study the animals in your area. Figure out where they live. But one huge overlooked area is the green areas around cities. In fact per square mile, there is a lot more animals in these areas then compare to say a National Forest land.
What the heck are ‘small deer’? Small deer are your medium size animals like raccoons, possums, ground hogs, beaver-size animals. In fact, ground hog are a very good animal to start snaring on. Their trails and den holes are easy to find and if your neighbor has one tearing up their garden it’s a good way to makes friends. Of course you have to check with your State to learn the regulations and laws regarding trapping.
I don’t recommend snaring in the summer months, fall is normally when the season opens. But for pest animals like ground hogs you can in most states trap them all year if they are causing damage.
I believe in professional equipment. The kind that trappers who make their living use. That is common sense, as you don’t want to bet your life on homemade stuff. A professional grade snare has some parts you need to understand.
I set this snare up to explain the parts. Looking at the center left, you have stop bottom a washer, swivel, and support collar. Right of that you have cam lock and stop button. This is a kill snare that can be used for wild hogs or in an emergency deer. It’s illegal to snare deer. The rest is 7×7 galvanized aircraft cable in 3/32.
The swivel allows the animal to twist and roll. The washer job is to protect the stop from wearing down. The support collar is for attaching wire to support the cable at the correct height for the target animal. The lock is designed to close and lock on the animal preventing it from backing off.
One time I was in Hawaii doing a survival trip and watched a feral pig get snared. Taught me a lot. You see we are only there for few days so we wanted a certain size pig. Not too big, not too small – one right at 35-40 pounds. So I set up two snares and we back off about 50 yards and watched.
Soon a sow pig come by and she walk on different trail and crossed over to the trail I had set the snares on. She was walking away from the snare no worries of catching her. Her little piglets took the trail the snare was set on. I mean little 5 pounders. They took turns jumping through the snare loop. Of course the last one didn’t clear the snare with his back feet. He pull the loop closed before running off. I had to reset the loop. Next a large 120 pound hog came by and had to literally chase him off the trail leading to the snare.
This was early morning. And it was starting to warm up. I was getting worried that we would have to come back in the evening to try again when the perfect size pig came down the trail. There was 5 pigs total but this 35 pounder was in the lead on the trail. He walked right into the snare keep walking I watched the loop close down on his neck and then the lock hit his neck he froze. He knew something was wrong. He back up the snare was tied off to a tree. When he back up about 5 feet the snare closed tighter on his neck. Fully panic set in and he race forward to the end of the snare and it tighten down for good. He back flipped. Squealing in panic he made one more running lunge and it was over. He wasn’t dead but he wasn’t going anywhere. A .22 to the head and we were eating well. I must say that was by far the best eating pork I have ever had.
I bring this all up for several reasons. The first is small animals can knock your loops down. Snares and traps do not have a choice to make, their job is to catch any animal that comes by. They literally can’t say let that one go. This is why you must be careful where you snare or trap because you don’t want to catch Fluffy the dog. Or Felix the cat.
One spring I taught church camp of young teenager and we set up a few beaver snares. Beaver are another good practice animal for beginners because their trails are so easy to spot. This beaver was crossing the dam and had a very well-marked trail.
This is what we found in the morning. A large 45 pound beaver that we cooked for dinner that night.
I believe every prepper should have a emergency snare kit. Here’s the one I sell:
Another very good trap to have is the small 110 Conibear trap:
This little wonder trap is great for small game like rabbits and squirrels. In fact it is a great survival trap, as they last for years. In this video link, I am using a 110 to trap rabbits. The trap was build back in 1977. Proper care of these traps and they can last 39 years and still be catching animals for you.
This video is a great beginner’s tool to get you started.
Here is a cottontail rabbit taken with the trap.
Where the 110 Conibear trap really shines is in den holes. I have trapped up to 6 rabbits out of one hole. In fact, the trap is so effective used at den holes you must be careful because you can wipe out all the rabbits in an area.
Another over-looked survival animal is the muskrat. Unlike the nasty brown rats you see feeding on garbage, muskrats live their lives in water. They live on vegetation just like rabbits. In fact in Louisiana they are sometimes called swamp rabbits.
I remember reading a story about professional trapper in Canada back in the 50’s. His wife and baby came with him out to trap muskrats. They were in small trapper’s cabin. I don’t remember why but they got stuck out there until spring. They ran out of food and survived for 2 months on eating just muskrats.
The 110 is a great Muskrat trap. In fact if you have water and cattails even in small ditches alongside the highway they are normally full of them. A great trap location is culvert pipes going under roads. In fact culvert pipes are great location for taking several different types of animals. When water is in them the small 12 inch pipes are great location for taking muskrats. But I have used sticks to narrow down large 3 foot wide pipes down to fit the 110 Conibear to trap muskrats.
In the fall when you are trapping muskrats you can also save and tan the furs to make fur hats. I tested this muskrat hat in North Dakota at 56 degrees below zero with no problem of getting cold.
A lot of would-be ‘survivalists’ say they can hunt for food. While hunting is part of survival. trapping is what is going to keep you fed and provide warm clothing. This is very practical survival skill to learn.
If you would like to learn more, please visit my web site atwww.snare-trap-survive.com.
Bruce “Buckshot” Hemming
American by BIRTH, Infidel by CHOICE
Some very good recommendations here.
SHTF Kit Planning: What to Have and Why – Part I
A picture’s worth a thousand words, isn’t it? Try to imagine ‘bugging out’ with a lot of the crap that various sources tell you that you must have in order to survive, and soon, you’ll be in worse shape than the troop pictured above, God bless him.
We’ve held off on putting together a DTG specific ‘SHTF Kit’ (aka ‘Bug Out,’ Survival, and other names) because a metric crap ton of information on the subject is already available. However, after reviewing what’s being accepted as ‘conventional wisdom,’ it has become apparent that as we focus on the “Neighborhood Protection Team” and local community aspect of preparedness, it’s time to throw in our two cents. We’ll start at the very foundation of what should be viewed as survival gear in any kit:
Your Boots: If your boots are garbage, you’re not walking far. At all. If they’re good boots, but aren’t fitted well, ditto. If they don’t have good insoles or support, double ditto. This is not the item to go cheap on; this is the item you will want to get the absolute best quality you can afford and have fit like it’s your own skin. DTG is partial to Danner boots, but there are plenty of other quality brands out there. Remember, you get what you pay for, so be a picky shopper. Research is key here. So far, the absolute best Danner we’ve found for long walks with heavy packs is the, ‘Combat Hiker,’ pictured here.
Your Container: Many sources encourage folks to start out with the container, and it should be a heavy gauge bag or a duffle bag of some sort. We couldn’t disagree more, and for several reasons:
- Carrying a full ‘bag’ or duffle, even with shoulder straps, for any distance, is going to get very uncomfortable very quickly. The lower back and trap muscles are going to take a beating, along with the core, presuming the person carrying it isn’t in the best shape or is a younger child, adolescent, or female.
- Carrying a well-made ruck sack (back pack) packed with survival items when performing NPT operations, or leaving one’s Neighborhood Protection Area for a safer location takes its toll, even when the individual carrying it has been practicing and is in good shape.
- It should be proportionately sized for the size and fitness level of the person who’s going to be carrying it. Further, it should be used as a routine PT (Physical Training) tool. Otherwise, you’re looking at being a living example of the picture above, especially if you’re ‘mature.’ A good rule of thumb is to have a pack loaded with no more than a third of the body weight of the person carrying it. That doesn’t sound too bad until you figure that a 180 pound male in decent shape will be carrying 60 pounds in the pack, which doesn’t take into account any other ‘equipment’, which may weigh up to about 30 pounds (more on that later). If you have kids with you, and they weigh 75 pounds, that means a 25 pound pack, maximum (including anything else they may have to carry), because their bones aren’t fully developed yet, and serious skeletal damage can occur if they carry too much. So, think about that when you’re putting your SHTF survival kit together. Look at the picture below. Think that little man or little lady is going to be able to hoist a pack like that, let alone carry it? Something to consider is that preppers have a propensity to over pack, especially when they try to adapt the, ‘two is one and one is none’ mindset, which is not applicable here. In a SHTF kit/pack, especially when you’re moving to a safer location, ‘one is great!’ is the rule with very few exceptions.
- When choosing your pack, try to get a balance between volume, empty pack weight, and durability. No need to spend hundreds of dollars, either, especially for your wife and kids, with the exception of young men from about 16 years and up. There’s a lot of good civilian brand packs out there on eBay that folks are selling that fit the bill nicely. Because of their inherent strength (yes, we’re aware that some women out there can run a lot of men into the ground, but generally speaking, men are better suited physicologically for carrying weight for long distances), men will be carrying the most during a SHTF movement. Because of this, and balanced against the fact that the men will most likely be the primary protectors for the family/group moving, the men’s packs should have some sort of quick release system built into the shoulder, sternum, and waist straps to be able to drop the pack quickly and do whatever is appropriate to protect the family. Here’s an example for family members, and is about half the size of the USMC FILBE (without accessory pouches holds about 5100 cubic inches – well over 6K with accessory pouches) that DTG staff members carry. It’s a Kelty Redwing, 3100 cubic inches/52 Liters. Sells for about $90 on eBay.
Now, with these two items, there’s a third leg of the stool that must be attached before you can even begin to think about walking out, and it’s already been alluded to, but we’ll begin beating the dying horse here anyway. You MUST break in your top quality boots by walking miles and miles and miles in them, finding out where hot spots are, treating your feet for blisters, and then adding gradually increasing weight in your pack on your walks to strengthen your back, core, and legs. It can be done with consistency in not too long a period of time. Example: This year was a mild winter. The DTG Chief Instructor started his ruck walks in mid February with 30 pounds and just 2 miles, just getting his body used to the exercise again. It is now 30 March 2016. Yesterday, he was able to 3.75 miles with 65 pounds at a pace of 13.3 minutes per mile. He’s 60 and weighs 175 pounds. Sure, he was beat at the end of the exercise, but if he has to ‘bug out’ or move to another NPA with his full load of equipment, self-defense carbine and ammo, and pack, he’s going to be able to go quite a ways before he needs to rest, and then, once rested, he’ll be able to keep going. The point being that you’re probably much younger and in better shape (or should be). You can do better and most likely be faster for longer distances. All you have to do is get started on a consistent program. Remember the graphic below:
Your Defense System: Very few resources in the commercial realm tell their readers they should have a defense system included in their SHTF pack/kit. This is a disservice. You need a weapon. If you have the best equipment in the world, with a family that’s in top physical condition, it all comes to nothing if you cannot keep them safe when you’re moving to Point B from Point A. Without a weapon (or several for a family), you’re just preparing to outfit a feral group of marauders when they come to get what you have. This addition also adds to the weight of what you’re carrying, especially when it comes to ammunition. Minimum recommendation for pistol ammo in the ruck is 50 rounds. This doesn’t count the ammo in the 5 magazines you’re carrying on you. Minimum recommendation for the Self Defense Carbine/Rifle is 210 rounds (7 thirty round magazines for an AR) in the ruck, and 7 thirty round magazines on your person (one would be in the carbine/rifle). That adds up. DTG recommends and uses the simple, ugly, reliable Glock 17/19 and AR’s. They’re easily controlled and have enough firepower to mount a sustainable defense. As much as some of us love the .45 and 7.62 NATO rounds, their weight for the same amount of ammunition is about twice that of the 9mm and 5.56 NATO. But, as always, to each his own. Remember, however, training is key here. You must perform dry fire consistently, and hit the range with live fire consistently. Hopefully, wearing what you’d be wearing if you were ‘bugging out.’ Other firearms are good choices, as well, providing the user practices carrying/shooting them and has enough ammunition. Some folks might be thinking that their 30-30 is good enough, and it just may be. However, get yourself a couple hundred rounds and see how the weight affects your pack. Everything is a trade off. Everything.
Next installment we’ll continue to build the kit and talk a bit about clothing and tools.
SHTF Kit Planning: What to Have and Why – Part II
In Part I, here, we began to build the foundation for a SHTF kit at its cornerstone, good boots, and moved on to the pack itself, some pros and cons, and then to personal protection. One thing we didn’t mention, and should have, was socks. Good, quality socks, and at least 6 pair per person. We like a merino wool blend, over the calf style, that wicks and is good for a minimum of 3 seasons. 3 season socks aren’t too heavy, and in winter, so long as you’re walking, your feet will stay comfortable. It’s when you stop that you need the heavier type. That said, we are HUGE ‘Vermont Darn Tough’ fans. The particular model we like is the USMC “Darn Tough” over the calf, extra cushion type (model 1501). They’re getting harder to find, and are expensive, but they’re well worth the cost. YMMV. They have another one, too, for much warmer climates. It’s their ‘tactical’ (everything seems to be ‘tactical’ these days…sigh) mid calf full cushion sock, that’s somewhat light weight. Definitely not a cold weather sock. As with other items we talk about, there definitely are other good brands, this is simply the one we find to be best suited to our particular needs.
As the picture above is meant to illustrate, over-packing is a dangerous habit that many in the preparedness/liberty community seem to be burdened with (pun intended), especially with the demonstrated lack of fitness one can witness at any gun show or preparedness exposition. Thousands of people buying enough junk (literally, because the quality is generally suspect) to fill several large rucks, and having to get a hand cart to take their purchases to their vehicles, building up a sweat loading it in the trunk. These folks can be viewed as ‘resupply points of opportunity’ because when you find them, dead on the road or in the woods, you might be able to recover something of use. Yes, it’s harsh, but the point is that physical fitness is your friend; High Fructose Corn Syrup, processed foods, a couch, and your flat screen are not. Together, those things conspire to rob you of your strength, stamina, and set you up to die of a heart attack within the first half mile of your ‘bug out’ trek. Ignore this at your own peril.
Now, the next category we need to cover is water. You can live longer without food than you can with water, as the body has an amazing ability to convert stored fat into energy when food intake becomes extremely low. Sure, you can’t go on forever, but you can go on, so long as you have water. Water weighs 8 lbs per gallon. That 8 lbs doesn’t take into account the water carrier, either. Depending on what you decide to have, each gallon might weigh 9 lbs; take for example if you have a couple of two quart canteens. These were ‘all the rage’ back in my day, as typically we had a couple of 1 quart hard plastic canteens balancing out our web belts to the outside and a couple more on the ruck sack (if we were lucky). These nice thing about these is they’re flexible, and you can easily nullify any sloshing that you can’t do with a hard canteen or container.
This is also why we’re fans of a hydration bladder except in deep cold (which we mitigate by the way we wear it). The one we’re partial to is by Camelbak, and again, it comes from their military line. It’s the USMC FILBE bladder. Not trying to sound like a surplus store commercial, but many items we use are acquired more
Simply put, this one has baffles, holds 100 ounces, and can have a mini-filter, like the one here by Sawyer, attached, so in worse case scenarios, you can fill your bladder with questionable water and still drink it. We get ours from Great Lake Survival Products, here. You’ll also notice other Sawyer products that would fill the water purification niche. We’ve used and own all them, including the Zero Two Bucket System for our ‘shelter in place’ purification needs, but I digress.
Back to the bladder: Why are baffles important? In a typical hydration bladder, as the water is consumed, it stays at the bottom – the baffles keep the hydration bladder flatter by helping to keep the water distributed throughout. This item also falls into the rare case where two is better than one. One is kept in the ruck, and used first. The other, if you have two, is on the self-defense harness/vest, and is reserved for when you may be leaving your pack in a small over night location and doing some sort of task that you need to be able to move much more quickly than you would carrying your ruck.
So, now we’ve got our locomotion (feet) and hydration taken care of, and we can move on to food. Let’s make it simple: You’re going to be using a lot of carbs and protein while losing fat if you’re going a good long ways on foot carrying your SHTF pack or even a small child on your back. So, you need some high-octane fuel. You don’t know if you can heat your food, you don’t know if you’ll be able to rehydrate it (freeze dried), and you need some easily ingested food that will do the trick. Here’s something to think about: Diversify what you are putting in your pack. Example:
- Six Meal Replacement bars (30/35 gr protein) – These come in all sorts of flavors, and are great for those times you can’t heat food up, stop, or otherwise take the time to prepare a meal. Six of these are basically 3 days worth of food at two of them a day.
- Four ‘mountain house type’ freeze dried entree’s (serves 2) – Of whatever you like. Comfort food. Very light. All it needs is hot water, right? Here’s the reason for the larger ‘serves 2’ sizes: They typically run 200 – 250 calories per serving, have lots of carbs, and some fat, with protein being the lowest major component. You need the carbs and fat, and having, “Beef Stroganoff” or “Chicken and Rice” or “Beef Stew” as a morale builder helps.
- Four ‘field stripped’ MRE type meals – That means just the spoon, entree, side dish, and desert. No excess cardboard, packing, etc.
Now you’ve got food for 7 days in your SHTF kit for yourself. You need to do the same (portion dependent, of course) for the others in your family, depending on their size and strength.
Morale items: Some candy, coffee, tea, cider mix, anything that can make water seem like it’s more than it is. Personally, if they had a powdered IPA mix, I’d have some of that with me….alas, but they haven’t invented that yet.
Right along side food in importance, is hygeine, because what goes in, must come out, right? Ok, you can do the roll of toilet paper in a zip lock bag if you want, just remember that in a ‘normal situation’ in a non-SHTF environment, a woman will use a roll of toilet paper in 5 to 7 days, depending on the roll. So, if you think you’ll take about 2 to 3 weeks to get to your fall back (believe me, it’s going to take you a LOT longer to get there than you think), you need to have that amount of toilet paper for the ladies. Men are different…we use about a roll every 2 to 3 weeks. Different plumbing – different needs. If you’re worried about room, because toilet paper is bulky, here’s an alternative.
There really neat. You put a few drops of water on one of them (which is about the size of a US nickel) and wait a bit. It expands and unfolds, is soft, because it’s barely damp, and is strong enough for cleansing one’s body after voiding waste. Not too awfully expensive, but remember, you get what you pay for. You’re paying for compressed TP. That means ‘room’ and less weight. So, it’s about $12 for 2 packs of 50. 100 butt wipes, if you use one towelette for each ‘incident’. That’s not bad. If you had 3 ‘incidents’ a day, it’d last one person over a month. Putting 2 of those packs in my pack makes me basically self-sufficient regarding hygiene for a good long time. But I’m a man, so YMMV. Check it out, here. Your call, though. Just have enough of whatever you choose to get you to your ‘hidey hole.’ You do NOT want to have to learn the hard way on what grass or leaves you should have wiped your ass with…or not.
Next time, we’ll talk about shelter and associated equipment.
SHTF Kit Planning: What to Have and Why – Part III
Here we are at shelters already. I’m going to cut to the chase and (possibly) tick off a few readers at the ‘get go.’
Forget a tent. Period. It’s too bulky, too heavy, and is not a ‘multiple use’ item. Further, when you’re inside one, you won’t have an advantage of increased warmth (without generating it by a heat source), and you’re blind. Imagine, if you will, the photo above, and you were snug in your tent, not hearing anything….until right before you unzipped the fly and looked out….to see an inquisitive bear (not necessarily a Grizzly, as pictured). Now you’ve got to do something about the bear and all the shit inside your tent from involuntary bodily functions, possibly the bear has run off from all the screams of those in the tent with you, and the ensuing ‘circular firing squad as everyone with a weapon decides to shoot/kill/scare off the intruder.
The mind boggles with the comedy of it all.
Forget the ‘one man bivy tent’ as well. It’s a cocoon. You’re trapped and blind. If you must have a waterproof covering for just yourself, then get over to Wiggy’s and get one of his waterproof sleeping bag covers. They’re on sale at 20% off right now. At least you’re not blind. And they DO work. One caveat: They are truly waterproof, which means your bag will be wet from condensation when you wake up. This isn’t so bad in deep cold, because you can air the bag and literally ‘freeze dry’ the condensation on it, and then turn the bivy bag inside out and do the same. Warm weather requires a bit more airing out to dry it.
So, what’s the ideal SHTF shelter? In the simplest terms, a tarp shelter. It keeps the wind off (which is how you stay warm), let’s you see out at all times, at least in one, and up to 3 directions, depending on your set up, and is fairly cheap, depending on the material you choose. In deep winter with good snow cover, I’ve used a simple 6X8′ white tarp and had my shelter disappear from observation (camouflage is always a good thing). The drawback is that it’s noisy setting up and taking down, because the tarp is a heavy plastic and makes noise when being folded, except in really warm weather. Again, it’s all about the quality and how much you can and how much you choose to spend.
Here’s what I currently use and recommend:
I got mine here though I don’t know if they still stock it or have replaced it with something similar. I do know that I’ve used mine in all 4 seasons and it’s worked out very, very well. Room enough to configure as I need it for whatever I’m training for and I can fit me and 2 other people and rucks inside (tightly, but it works). There are other good ones; this is just what I use. I did add some 24 inch long bungees to the outfit to give me some versatility in setting it up, so I know the ounces I’m adding means I have to sacrifice somewhere else. The color is basic light forest green (kind of OD) that is flat with no shine, even when it’s wet. Blends reasonably well, especially if you site your overnight location somewhere off the beaten path in as much flora and fauna as necessary. Nice sunshade in super bright/hot weather, too.
When you set up your shelter, keep in mind that you want the opening to be pointed at your primary field of observation, and you want your shelter to be sited in an area that doesn’t attract attention and won’t be noticed by anyone passing through. You’ll also want to ensure you are at least slightly elevated (drainage) and about 30 to 50 meters away from any water source. Yes, I digressed again.
What shelter tips do you have?
Next installment: Tools.
Next up from shelters is what we sleep in. Up front, know this is entirely temperature range dependent. What works where I am in summer may be way too much for you if you’re, say, in central Texas or central Utah. But put it on your checklist: A good, quality, sleeping bag. Or at least several good, quality components that can make up a ‘taco’ (improvised sleeping bag). If going the commercially manufactured way, the one we recommend is the Wiggy’s FTRS system. Wiggy’s bags actually repel water away from the fibers and provide more real warmth due to the insulation used than similarly or higher priced bags. Here’s a link to Wiggy’s that explains how and why it works so well. His bags are extremely durable, and get better when they’re laundered. An added benefit is that he runs specials on a routine basis if you’re saving your pennies. His bags also come with a pretty robust stuff sack, which, after a liberal application of Camp Dry or other waterproofing spray, will keep your bag nice and dry, especially if you have it stored inside your ruck. Here’s an anecdotal example of a young man purposely soaking his Wiggy’s bag and sleeping in it in winter:
We use the FTRSS over bag for 2 to 3 seasons (it’s good down to +35) backed up with a, “Sea to Summit Reactor Extreme Thermolite Liner.” Until we actually break down and load the main bag, too, we might throw in a ‘woobie’ (aka, ‘poncho liner’). I’ve been asked why don’t I just use the main bag, and the answer is simple: Layering. In summer I might not use anything but my woobie, or if it’s an unusually cold summer night, I might throw on the Sea to Summit and woobie. I like to have the option. About mid-September though, the main bag goes in the ruck. DIGRESSION WARNING: Another nice thing about Wiggy’s bags is that they can be compressed in the stuff sack or your ruck indefinitely and not ruin the pile (meaning the cold rating). It’s all in the fiber used. That means you can keep your ruck loaded up for use most of the time (personally, I take mine apart a couple times a year to inspect for damage and let the sleeping bag air out (my old school habit). I walk with my ruck already packed regularly, so there’s a better chance of something being out of whack. Deep winter is a subject for its own post, so it won’t be covered here, except to say that you don’t want to have to relocate in winter if at all possible. Make sure you’ve got yourself into the best place you can be with plenty of food, water, and warmth. You don’t want to try to spend the winter in something like this….even from just a hygiene perspective, let alone a comfort and day to day living perspective. Sure…it can be done, but it’s a last resort. Which, by the way, you need to be trained in and practice (consistent pattern here, I know….training, practice, fitness, training, practice, fitness) regularly as these skills are all perishable to one extent or the other. End of digression.
If you’re going the quality component method, there are a great many good products out there. It’s your choice. Something that will help you make a choice is to get some good training in survival, which always includes learning about improvised shelters and insulation. And trust me, staying warm is all about the insulation…with a little bit of wind consciousness thrown in. I’ve made and slept in parachute panel sleeping bags with natural insulation and stayed warm enough to sleep, but remember, if this is your choice, you’re going to spend a LOT of time gathering your insulation material, and if everything’s already wet, you’re SOL for that type of set up. To keep dry if it gets wet after you’re in the bag/shelter, you need a couple of FEET of insulation, give or take, with the rule of thumb being MORE is better when trying to stay warm and dry. Check this example out:
That’s why I prefer the commercially available bags designed to keep me warm and dry. Less time needs to be spent achieving resting state. And know that time spent equates to energy expended, and as you’re moving a good distance to your ‘hidey hole’ or ‘fall back’ or ‘retreat’ or…whatever you’re calling it, there is a chance that you may exhaust yourself, depending on your fitness level, distance, and the quality of food and water you have available to you while you’re en route. A great dramatization of someone ‘evading’ is here. Only the first installment is available currently, but as the presenter is vouched for by someone I trust implicitly, and have known of him for some years now, I suspect that it will stay realistic and demonstrate various skills and scenarios you could possibly face while employing your SHTF kit.
As far as what we’ve put together so far, we’re talking quality equipment (what priority are you putting on your life?) which should be the best you can afford. Whatever you choose, make sure it’s not a ‘knock off’ and can do what it advertises, including anything you see here. If you have a problem with the quality of anything we’ve recommended, please, by all means, let us know, because A: we have no interest in the products other than they work and we own them, and B: we will always go to a superior product, test it, and then either talk about it…or not, depending on the outcome.
So, we’ve got boots, socks, packs, hydration, food, hygiene, shelter, and sleeping covered. Next installment we’ll delve into basic clothing. Hint: It ain’t all about the latest and greatest camouflage pattern adopted by our armed forces, either.
American by BIRTH, Infidel by CHOICE
Zombie Survival Camp!
Highlander “Survival & Tech Prep”
On this Episode we welcome Mark from theZombieSurvival Camp to talk about the services this camp offers. I know what you are thinking, the zombie survival camp, are you serious is this even legit? But It is, a real camp to train for firearms, crossbow, self-defense with knives and melee weapons, as well as bug out bags, first aid, shelter building, using night vision and team leadership.
Mark has a lot of stories to talk about doing this as long as he has and he knows his stuff! The need for training is an absolute these days when we are not certain of our future. What he offers is an edge for those that would otherwise be helpless in a shtf/wrol situation.
I know what everyone thinks when they hear the name zombie, but this is a genuine service and well worth it! Join us as we discuss the in’s and out of training for survival, and defense. It may be hard for some people to grasp the concept of having to use these skills to survive but it may save you or a loved one’s life some day.
We all know the world might not be the friendliest when shtf , so it is great we have a service like Zombie Survival Camp to offer what they do. Personally I feel this type of camp is one of the greatest things that could ever happen to the prepper community. It provides that training that you just simply cannot get anywhere else. Sure you can get firearms training in places, but when you combine shelter making, first aid, small arms, crossbows, and the other numerous services, you just simply cannot beat it.
Listen in as we talk about all of the cool things he does for the patrons of his service at the Zombie Survival Camp. As always enjoy the show!
Join us for Survival & Tech Preps “LIVE SHOW” every Monday 9:00/Et 8:00Ct 6:00/Pt Go To Listen and Chat
Listen to this broadcast or download “Zombie Survival Camp” in player below!
GET TRAINED – HAVE FUN – TEST YOUR SKILLS – COMPETE FOR $700+ in PRIZES
– REGISTER NOW –
The ONLY 3-Day – Family Friendly – Survival Training in the USA That Covers:
The Core 4: SHELTER – FIRE – WATER – FOOD +
+ Wilderness First Aid + Navigation with a Compass, the Sun and Stars + Hand to Hand Self Defense (And Disarming an Attacker) + Primitive and Modern Survival Weapons (Including Firearms) + Bug Out Basics + Choosing Survival Knives and Gear + FREE Food and Medicine (AKA Wild Edible and Medicinal Plants) + How to Survive ANY Crisis or Disaster + Family Survival Tips + How to “Process” and Cook Small Game Animals… AND MORE.
You’ll Even Craft Your Own Bow Drill Kit AND Make Fire With It – So FAR, We Have a 100% Success Rate With Our Students – Come On Out AND Help Us Keep a Perfect Record!!!
Only ONE Date in 2016 – SO DON’T MISS OUT!
LOCATION: Wellsboro, Pennsylvania USA
STARTS: Monday July 11th 2016 @ 1:00PM EST
ENDS: Thursday July 14th 2016 @ 2:00PM EST
COST: ONLY $295 / Person Until March 31st, 2016 (Regular Price $495)*
*EARLY BIRD Registration ENDS March 31st, 2016 / April 1st to April 30th – $395 / After May 1st – $495
The ULTIMATE SURVIVAL CHALLENGE – LEVEL 1 is a FUN yet INTENSE Training that Packs Over 40 Hours of VITAL Urban and Wilderness Survival Skills into 3 Days. Along the Way We Will Surprise You With Individual and Group Skills Challenges that Will TEST (and Reinforce) What YOU Have Been Taught AND Give You the Opportunity to Win Your Share of Over $700+ in Survival Gear and Prizes.
FAMILY FRIENDLY – We LOVE Families! Moms and Dads, Sons, Daughters (13 Years Old and Up) and Grandparents… All Will Enjoy our “SAFE” Friendly and Wholesome Training Style and Camp Environment – Where You Will Be Able to JUST Be Yourself, Enjoy the Beauty of the Pennsylvania Mountains and Be Encouraged Regardless of Your Skill Level.
Your Instructors: David (Founder of Ultimate Survival Tips) will be joined by Craig Caudill, founder and Chief Instructor of Nature Reliance School, and Clint Jivoin, Primitive Survival Skills Trainer and Writer for the American Survival Guide.
We’ve boiled down decades of experience to bring to you only the most practical and effective – survival methods, strategies and gear.
Survival Skills You’ll Discover:
– How to Build Primitive, Hybrid and Modern Survival Shelters
– 6 Steps to Increase Your Chance of Surviving Any Crisis
– How to Find, Collect and Purify Water through Primitive and Modern Techniques
– 7 Priorities of Urban and Wilderness Survival
– Hand to Hand / Survival Self Defense and Disarming Basics
– How to Obtain Food through Survival Hunting, Fishing and Trapping Methods
– Basic Wild Edible and Medicinal Plants
– How to Start and Build a Sustainable Fire Using a Wide Range of Methods
BONUS Sessions Will Include:
– Everyday Carry, Bug Out Bag and Emergency Kit Essentials
– How to Select the Right Survival Gear
– Primitive, Hybrid and Modern Survival Weapons
– And a Lot More…
PLUS! See Today’s Top Survival Gear and Knives
Don’t worry, even though this course is jam packed, you’ll have plenty of time to check out David’s extensive personal collection of TOP survival gear and knives. If you’re nice, he might even let you try stuff out so you can discover which gear is the best for you!
Where Is It?
This training is hosted in the Beautiful Endless Mountains of Wellsboro Pennsylvania.
NOTE: You will be provided with the location of the training AND what you need to bring following registration.
When Is It?
STARTS: Monday July 11th 2016 @ 1:00PM EST
ENDS: Thursday July 14th 2016 @ 2:00PM EST
Cost / Food and Lodging:
Meals are provided and FREE tent camping is included adjacent to our primitive camp area where most of your training will take place.
The cost is
$495 $295 per person through March 31st 2016*.
*EARLY BIRD Registration ENDS March 31st, 2016 / April 1st – April 30th $395 / After May 1st $495
Notes: There are restroom and shower facilities available to all at the training. If you have special lodging needs, we have modern lodging facilities available. Contact us for details.
Who Should Attend?
This training is open to men, women, and responsible supervised youth WITH parent or guardian (13 – 17 years old), law enforcement, first responders and military members OR anyone who wants to learn a wide range of essential survival skills in a short period of time – in a SAFE fun and family friendly environment.
What Should I Bring?
After you register, you’ll be provided with directions to the training location and everything else you need to know to have a fun, safe and fulfilling experience – including what gear you should bring.
EARLY BIRD SPECIAL – $295 Per Person + A FREE Limited Edition Survival Knife for the FIRST 15 People to Sign Up**
**The first 15 people to sign up will get a limited edition, Schrade SCHF9 Extreme Survival Knife (one of David’s favorite knives) engraved by the manufacturer to commemorate your survival training.
Don’t Wait – Register Now!
We are limiting class size to ensure that everyone gets adequate hands-on experience and one-on-one time with our instructors. I don’t want you to miss out – so don’t wait – register today!
I got this Muscle Roller Stick for my wife Genny, because she has devoted a lot of time and energy into her exercise program. After a hard set of exercises she almost always asks me to rub her back to help relieve the tension. Luckily for me this device came in the mail right after a hard day on the land cutting trees and hand digging a drainage ditch. I only stopped work when my hands could no longer grip the pick-axe and as I write this review I am extremely grateful I took the opportunity to review this item
Your firearm is a tool that requires considerable training to master. The only thing that makes you a skilled shooter is hundreds of hours of practice where you put thousands of rounds downrange.
A firearm is an inanimate object. It cannot load its own magazines or cylinder, it cannot rack the slide to chamber a round or cock its own hammer, and it certainly cannot pull its own trigger. The fact you have a firearm on you, or in your home will do nothing to guarantee your safety unless you know how to use it. The fact you have one does not make you bulletproof.
Just because you joined the military or become a police officer does not make you a good shooter. Only hours of practice will do that, and only after hundreds of hours can you take a deep breath and feel more confident, feel safer, and above all else you know you have the skills needed to handle a firearm safely and effectively when needed. You do not fear your firearm.
There is no legal requirement that you know how to use a handgun before you buy one, nor any requirement that you even know which end the rounds come out of, but in our society, you have the right to buy one if you can legally possess one. There is a responsibility that comes with owning one, however, a responsibility that you must take seriously.
There are people that have purchased handguns, went through the effort to get a concealed carry permit, and then regretted the purchase. They became paranoid when out in public, “everyone knows I have a handgun”, even though it was in a purse or in a concealed holster. Some even went so far as to say that people will start trouble with me because I am carrying.
Eyes are on me and it makes me paranoid. Then there are others who once they get their gun home, they fear their child will find it, or a neighbor will find it or it will get stolen and used in a robbery or murder, or even used against them in their own home. Fear guided their purchase and now fear causes them to get rid of their handgun or to hide it somewhere. Fear stops them from getting the training so they can protect themselves and their family.
There is nothing to fear from a handgun, only fear the person holding it, and when you are not trained then you are to be feared. Accidental discharges are a fallacy. They are negligent discharges and not accidental. They are caused by a lack of responsibility and poor training or no training at all. It requires action on your part to discharge a firearm.
If your finger is not on the trigger it will not fire, if the gun is not loaded and a child finds it the gun will not fire. If you leave it loaded and unattended then you are negligent and certainly not a responsible gun owner and you are to be feared.
Some get rid of the firearm and others lock it up in a safe and forget about it. This is one of the problems today. People are scared and they run out and buy a gun, get it home and become even more scared, scared because they do not know anything about firearms. They have no training and no experience because dad, mom, nor the grandparents ever owned a firearm they have no history, no experience and yet they buy one because they became scared and thought just having one means I am safer.
Then there are those people who fixate on their firearms, and every sound they hear at night causes them to draw their weapon. They sleep with it, carry it to the shower with them, and have one hidden in a seat cushion, and taped under a desk or table. They may be paranoid, as well, but not scared of their firearm and yet are not trained very well either, but they think they are. They think a handgun is like a camera where you point and shoot and anyone can do it.
You will never see a trained shooter pull his sidearm unless he plans to shoot someone or something. You will never see them practicing unless on a firing range. Poorly trained owners like to show their guns off, let others handle their guns. They like the quick draw and will show off in front of their friends. They pass their guns around when they get together with friends, so everyone can make cooing noises and tell them how cool they are for owning one, and so they can say they have never seen anyone draw faster.
A firearm is a tool and for most people, for the vast majority of people, they will never have to use it against another human being. Like insurance, you buy it and hope you never need to use it, but when you need it, you really need it.
If you follow the very simple, very basic handgun rules then there will never be any “accidents”, no one is ever “unintentionally” injured or killed on your watch. It takes time and hours of training, however, and it is harder than most people think, and that is why people get scared and frustrated after they buy a firearm. That is why it ends up in the closet and forgotten about, and quite possibly ends up in the wrong hands at some point and you may not know about it until it’s too late.
This is the last scenario, and in a lot of ways the most likely to occur, as well as the most realistic. In Tennessee it is not a legal requirement to inform a law enforcement officer of your carry permit and armed status. (In some states it is – so know your law). However, I believe it is a good idea. Like my CCW vs Open carry video I am making a distinction between your rights and what is the response that is most likely to shorten rather than lengthen your encounter with the police. If you choose not to
Hello, this is David from the Shepherd School, and I am excited to tell you about our new show on the preparedness radio network. Just like our website, tngun.com, our show will focus on the skills necessary to become more self-reliant. We keep talking about guns, and how-to projects, but will also add guests and […]
See larger image Rifle Range Construction: A Text-Book to Be Used in the Construction of Rifle Ranges, with Details of All Parts of the Work This is a reproduction of a book published before 1923. This book may have occasional imperfections such as missing or blurred pages, poor pictures, errant […]
You’re going to have to watch the video on this one. An article on Glock Receiver Disassembly won’t do justice to this without pictures, and an article with pictures is going in an upcoming book, and as I learned from a recent book “Quitter” you cannot sell anything if you give it all away for […]
Some students (thankfully very few), tell me they would draw on the bank robber because he is a felon running away, or some other variation of the citizen’s arrest theme. Others say you cannot draw your gun because it is illegal to shoot someone in the back*… Well both are from erroneous self defense ideas. […]
We will be offering an NRA Pistol instructor class is Gallatin, TN on the weekend of February 23-24, 2013. This class is to certify new instructors to teach the NRA basic pistol class. Additionally, in the State of Tennessee certified NRA pistol instructors can apply to become handgun carry permit instructors. This is a fast […]
All of your preparation and boring administrative work is about to pay off now that you’re actually getting ready to run your event. In this article we’ll talk about event flow and how to keep people from falling asleep in their seats as well as getting contact information and setting the momentum for the next event. This part should be the most fun of all the work you’ve put in, both for you and the members of your group.
7: Greet everyone at the door
Either figure out a way to do this yourself or have someone who’s helping you (if you’re lucky enough to have any volunteers) do this. Ideally make sure that the person is greeted a few times within 5 minutes of walking in the door and have the greeter introduce the person to several other people there. Introducing a new person around helps prevent groups “clumping” into cliques and can help get everyone over the social awkwardness of first meetings early on.
8: Short group introductions and what they’re preparing for
Once you get everyone to their seats I highly recommend doing a round robin brief introduction and letting everyone mention what they’re preparing for. Place a time limit on the introduction, something along the lines of:
“Hey everyone, we’re going to go around the room real quick and introduce ourselves real quick in case there’s anyone you didn’t get a chance to meet before the meeting. If you wouldn’t mind just tell everyone your name and take about 30 seconds to tell everyone who you are and what you’re preparing for. Please be brief since we’ve got a lot to cover today.”
This was one of the most important little side notes I found from organizing meetings and attending meetings that others organized. For a lot of the people that will attend these gatherings they feel ostracized or crazy around groups of “normal” people who just want to talk about the local sports team and how little Timmy is doing in math. These meetings have an important secondary function of providing a place to decompress and build a little community and comradeship but once people start relaxing it’s easy for stronger personalities to hijack the course and content of your meetings. Setting a time limit and then enforcing that time limit is important for maintaining a good flow.
9: Body of the meeting
Briefly introduce your instructor (“Hey everybody, this is Earle and he’s a local butcher who’s going to show us how to break down a pig” or “Hey everyone this is Tony and he’s a local pyromaniac) or yourself if you haven’t already and then get down to it. I recommend keeping everything fast paced and then planning to have questions asked during specific period. If possible try to get the attendees involved in some sort of hands on way.
10: Aftermath and Admin
After the meeting is over thank everyone for attending and refer anyone interested in coming out further to a contact sheet (this can be as simple as a note pad set aside for contact details or as elaborate as references to online groups or websites with forums). I’ve found it extremely useful to mention when the next meeting will be (even if you don’t have a topic all you need to provide is location, contact information for yourself, and a date and time) and then invite anyone who is still hanging around to come out for a bite to eat. Some of the best comradeship and friendships I have developed in the prepper community were at the “meeting after the meeting” over beer and hotwings and really getting to know people.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this article series. In the future I’ll be launching another series on using the core group that forms out of open meetings like this to form the nucleus of a Mutual Assistance Group.
The post Starting Your Own Survival / Prepping Group Part 3: The Big Event appeared first on How to Survive It.
To be a survivalist means by nature to hope for the best, but prepare for the worst. To acquire skills that you may never once need to use in your life, but if the day ever comes that you do, you face that adversary with both confidence and grace. Lock picking is one of those offbeat skills that any capable survivor should acquire, especially those who live in an urban environment.
Lock picking has many negative connotations associated with it and it’s understandable why. The very essence of lock picking is to undermine and compromise security, which is commonly associated with criminal activity. But in reality, the high majority of lock pickers are either hobbyists or those who want to understand and better their own security. Regardless of why an individual chooses to learn the craft of lock picking, one thing is certain. To the lock picker, the world is an open door and to the survivalist this can mean everything. Here are a few examples of why this skill is valuable.
Lock picking is reliable
In an urban based survival situation you may find yourself needing to open things that don’t belong to you and that you do not have a key to. Of course you can always attempt to pry it open with crowbar or break it with a hammer but the reality is that brute force doesn’t always get the job done. Not all doors can be knocked in and not all locks breached by means of force. Sometimes it takes a little more finesse to get the job done. Additionally caring around a set of lock picks is much lighter than massive bolt cutters. With lock picking in your arsenal you can enjoy a certain peace of mind knowing that locks aren’t an enemy to be feared.
Lock picking is subtle
One of the great things about picking locks is that it’s stealthy. Because you are essentially mimicking the use of a key you will never leave any evidence that a lock was picked. This is fantastic if you ever need to get into places without people ever knowing you did so. Additionally, and more importantly, because pick locks is non-destructive, you can always make use of the locks that you pick. If you ever need somewhere secure to take shelter, you can be certain that whatever door you unlock can once again be locked behind you. You never know when stealth can be the difference between life and death.
Gain a better understanding of security
Know thy enemy. Understanding the basic concepts of locks and how to pick them will open your eyes to very concerning reality. The common lock is an illusion. It promises us protection but in truth they offer very little against anyone with a set of picks and a little patience. Through lock picking you will gain a truer perspective on your own security situations and how you may better that security. You never know what potential enemies you may have in a survival situation and being ignorant to the skill of your enemies could be detrimental. However if you know what they know, or even more, the tides can be turned and you can sleep well at night knowing that you are safe.
So exactly how hard is it to acquire the skill set of lock picking? There is a common misconception that lock picking takes years of practice to acquire, but in reality its core concepts can be learned and applied in a very short amount of time. After you understand exactly how a lock works, which is exceedingly simple in theory, you can realistically begin cracking locks within hours. This being said, lock picking is still a skill and like any skill must be practiced to gain and maintain proficiency. Additionally, lock picks are a relative cheap investment as you can pick up a basic set for around $20.
So as we can see, lock picking can be a very practical skill to learn. Whether it be for an everyday problem like locking yourself out of your home, to a survival situation of needing to break out of a set of handcuffs, lock picking is a skill set you can rely on. You will feel a certain level of confidence knowing that if push came to shove, you could tackle just about any lock with grace and gain access to things you otherwise would never have been able to. Open up your world and learn the craft that is lock picking.
I have one seat left for next weekend’s pistol instructor class. If you want to teach beginners to shoot, or teach the TN handgun permit course now is a great time to get started. If you cannot make this weekend’s class, I do have another in April. Republished by Blog Post Promoter
As a self-defense instructor, I cringe when I hear people use the term stun gun and Taser interchangeably. They are NOT the same; they do not function the same way, nor are they equal in effectiveness. In order to show how they work, I shot some video of being hit with both a stun gun […]
Wilderness self-reliance skills!
Live from the woods/trap line
Josh “The 7P’s of Survival”
This week I will be coming to you live from the woods/trap line (I hope technology doesn’t fail me) and we will be talking about outdoor skills training. There are hundreds of places across the country that teach in-person self reliance skills courses and without having been to a majority of then. I’m going to limit myself to a few free coorespondence type courses online that are great places to get your feet wet when learning wilderness self-reliance skills. I will devote the majority of my time talking about the Bushcraft USA Bush Class Beginner, intermediate and Advanced courses.
Over the last year or so I have utilized these courses to hone, develop and practice my wilderness self-reliance skills for free on my own time and at my own pace. While others may need to jump into the deep end and take a class to start (there are plenty of great courses and instructors out there) this method is not only much cheaper for many but also more practical as they can easily into developing skills. Granted spending countless nights in the woods is not for everyone so this course format also allows you to find out if this lifestyle is for you before investing hundreds of dollars in gear that you would need at the onset of a traditional course. To complete these courses you need little more than the materials you can find around your home with the lone exception being a good knife (an old hickory butcher knife will get you through the class).
I will walk through the Basic Bush Class Requiements (See my article on the class here, Intermediate Bush Class Requiements (See my article on the class here, the advanced bush class and all of the electives you must complete for certification. I will then cover the positive and negative aspects of this type of course and answer any questions you might have concerning the courses.
Join us for The 7P’s of Survival “LIVE SHOW” every Tuesday 9:00/Et 8:00Ct 6:00/Pt Go To Listen and Chat
Listen to this broadcast or download “Wilderness self-reliance skills” in player below!
I will have a 15 minute segment on gun safety to introduce the Shepherd School to the audience of the Prepper Reality Network on blog talk radio. The show will be the Sunday at 9-10pm central. You can tune in live on your computer here http://www.blogtalkradio.com/prepperreality/2012/11/19/preppers-reality-show The following Saturday I will begin hosting my own […]
Today we are going to talk a little about lethal force and handgun deployment. Over the course of this blog, I have been very clear that in Tennessee before a person is legally justified in using deadly force they have to Believe their life is in immediate danger, and the person against whom they are […]
One of the troublesome aspects of shooting can be finding a place to staple up your targets. All too often we as shooters compromise a well prepared practice one more session because of a lack of suitable range equipment. If you have looked into purchasing portable target stands, undoubtedly you have noticed that most equipment […]
Very good stuff. Without going all OPSEC violationy (though a combination of wikki leaks, scientific/ tech magazines like popular mechanic or internet shit weekly and various manuals/ TTP’s/ CALL publications you can probably get over 90% of the way there) I want to add somethings.
I would add.
Problem- Do not just dispose of compromised phones. The issue is smart folks will sit on that stuff, especially if the bad guys aren’t dumping them. They will sit on phones for weeks to roll up as much of the network as they can.
Solution- Dump phones, and I mean genuinely 100% of the phones not half or 3/4’s AT ONCE. I hesitate to say an exact time but I would probably do it at least monthly during a very low intensity (which one could argue we are in now) time and more like weekly in a high intensity time. I would also consider operational variables such as mission timing and personnel changes. I would not keep to a schedule but would instead of it semi regularly within those general considerations.
Problem- Hiding in plain (electronic) sight.
Solution- Whenever possible use phones in areas/ times where there is lots of electronic noise. Since basically anyone can listen in on cell phones you want lots of noise. Think of it like having a conversation in a crowded bar instead of a quiet empty libraary. I bet there are a lot of phones in use at say 5-7 PM in a quarter mile radius in the suburbs. How many are being used in a national forest at 2 AM, probably one. You might not be able to avoid when/ where you talk from in some situations but when you can busy is good.
5 Critical Things You’re Missing in Your SHTF Training is pretty good also. I have never seen that blog before but it was sure a good post.
It is probably not a surprise that as a “gun guy” I visit lots of firearm stores. I actually make it sort of a hobby. I visit stores see how they differ, how they are the same, what they are selling, and how the staff interact with customers. As a firearm instructor I get to […]
TASERS are able to incapacitate attackers because they interfere with the signals that cause voluntary muscles to move. Today we demonstrate it. While I am against anyone using a stun gun for self-defense, I am a firm believer in the use of Tasers as effective self-defense tools.Most people I meet think the difference between tasers […]
I do not like everything the US Federal Government does (but what’s new there)… However, they do get some things right on occasion. In my opinion, the CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) program is one of them. I have written about CERT before. but Basically CERT educates people about disaster preparedness for hazards that could […]
Josh “7 P’s of Survival”
This week on the 7 P’s Of Survival we will have Tyler Anderson back on the show and we will be talking all things Caving. Tyler will walk you through where to start on your caving journey as far as equipment, training, packing, guides, clubs, rescue and much more.
To start the night off we will talk about basic skills and equipment to practice and develop before you decide you want to take the plunge into caving (if you are into mountaineering then you will have most of the gear you will need) . Tyler and I both come from a technical rescue background and got stated into caving through high angle rescue with or respective fire and EMS agencies. We will give you a basic set of equipment that can serve you in your recreational climbing, caving, rope rescue, mountaineering, and even swift water adventures. We will then expand that equipment list onto things that you might want to consider as you dig deeper into exploring various climbing adventures. Be sure to check out the Mountaineering section of our store http://astore.amazon.com/th7pssubl-20?_encoding=UTF8&node=16 for all your adventure sport needs.
Once you have the basic kit items in hand we will talk about what skills you are going to need to practice/develop/hone before you think about going into any cave. These skills involve everything from basic knots to working in a harness to climbing a rope, dealing with confined spaces, swimming underground and much more. We will talk about schools to attend to develop these skills and places you can go to practice that might be a little innovative. Additionally, we will talk about a few groups you need to join if you are going to start caving as their resources are beyond reproach and have more local knowledge that you simply can’t find on the internet.
We will close out the evening talking about adventures to try (I really want to do a cave with an underground river), what to avoid and generally how to go down the rabbit’s hole (literally and figuratively) of getting deeper and deeper into mountaineering, caving, climbing, etc. Fair warning once these sports get their hooks into you it’s expensive and will be how you want to spend all of your free time! We will also talk about some cave rescues and just how dangerous this adventure sport is so that you have a clear picture what this adventure sport entails. We hope to see you in chat and hear from you on the air with all the questions you may have about recreational climbing and mountaineering!
Listen to this broadcast or download “Caving 101” in player below!
We will be teaching the NRA Pistol Instructor Courses (Including the Basic Instructor Course) at Clarksville Guns and Archery in Clarksville TN December 12-13. Normally this is a $350 course, however, Clarcksville Guns and Archery and I are working together to give these two course for $249.99 The class will be a hands on course […]
The post NRA Pistol Instructor Course (includes Basic Instructor Training Course) Clarksville TN December 12-13, 2015 (HIGHLY DISCOUNTED) appeared first on Shepherd School – Home for DIY Prepper Projects.
Talk about a wonderful way to start the day…..
I woke up to an email this morning to find out that Happy To Survive has named Practical Tactical among the top 250 prepper websites with top prepping resources on the interwebs. This marks the second time we have been ranked among the best in the business when it comes to helping you and yours become more prepared for whatever may come down the road. We are especially proud of being included in this group as we are rubbing shoulders with some of the folks that we consider to be the very best at what they do, which is helping others increase their level of preparedness and personal resilience like Peak Prosperity, Resilience, Willow Haven Outdoor, James Wesley Rawles Survival Blog and Prepper Website just to name a few.
This recognition means so much to us for a number of reasons, but mostly because it gets right to the heart of what we strive to make Practical Tactical all about….helping others become more prepared and resilient in their every day lives. Our work with Practical Tactical is not a full time deal. My wife (and partner in the venture) and myself both maintain full time jobs, raise our baby girl, as well as entertain our vast number of other interests that make our life experience worth living and for us that is the key to preparedness. Prepping does not have to take over your life or darken your outlook on the world. Rather, we hope to show you that being prepared is something anyone can do and that it, in fact, frees you from the stresses of worrying over the circumstance that you are NOT prepared and allows you to get out there and enjoy all that this wonderful life has to offer. The list states that it is cobbled together in no particular order, but just to be included among such a fine group of individuals and projects is a wonderful honor in itself.
Other folks want higher levels of preparedness, some much higher. For folks on the longer end of the spectrum of preparedness goals it is a long journey. It is years or most of a lifetime of work. A marathon not a sprint if you will. In any multi year effort there are going to inevitably be times where you loose focus or life’s demands creep up. Medical issues can come up and money gets tight. Sometimes we just plain get bored or lose interest. Now it is easy to do nothing about preparedness for a week or a month but when a month turns to 2 or 3 it can be an issue.
So what can we do to minimize the down sides of these inevitable events?
-Hold what you have got! This means keeping up on needed maintenance for small engines (or going all the way and draining fluids, etc), rotating fuel and mid term type food, occasionally cleaning some guns, etc. If we can do this at least we should be able to maintain the levels of preparedness we worked so hard to get to.
-Automate whenever possible. Metals Pimp does a regular monthly plan for silver and gold. Set it up on a CC or transfer from your bank and forget it. [As soon as I get a better picture of what my post divorce money situation will be I will set one of these up.] I think there are similar plans for food storage out there.
-If the reason you are slowing down/ distracted only affects one area (space, time, money, physical stuff, etc) then focus on the other areas. If you are broke you can still do PT and dry fire. If you are short of space you can still train. If you are short on time you can still accumulate supplies. Work on what you can work on. You get the idea.
So those are my general ideas about how to manage the inevitable dry stretches. Now here are a couple thoughts on how to get out of them.
-Shift focus. Start a new preparedness related hobby. If you are a big radio guy get into shooting. If you are a big shooter get into canning. If you are a big time gardener work on pt.
-Do something useful but a touch indulgent. Splurge on a cool new radio then play with it. Build that precision rifle or get licensed and pick up that Enduro bike you have wanted. Dig deep to find the money for that class. You get the idea. [Incidentally I am going to try hard to make ECQC happen in 2016 as a present to me. Also an Appleseed.]
-Reevaluate and set new goals. Look at where you are and where you want to go. Find some goals to be excited about and get back to work.
“A man’s got to know his limitations” -Inspector Harry Callaghan AKA Dirty Harry
-John’s half sarcastic point that we all need to train to measurable standards or we honestly don’t have a clue where we are is 100% valid. We really do have to train to measurable standards, otherwise it is just screwing around. How ever I sort of look at this article from a different angle.
-As an ‘O’ in the Army I am not a trigger puller per se. My primary job, at least in a general sense, is planning and supervising operations both in garrison and the field. It would be reasonable, though simplistic, to say as an Officer my job is to assess situations, make plans to achieve a desired end state, help to ensure those things are properly executed then adapt those plans as needed. I guess the point is I plan a lot of stuff.
-During the planning of an operation at work we are encouraged to use METT-TC to understand the situation prior to making a plan. METT-TC means Mission, Enemy, Terrain, Troops, Time, Civil Considerations. Moving past the other pieces since they are not part of this discussion we can focus on the Troops piece.
-What I am getting at is that leaders/ planners need to know their people’s equipment, skills, fitness, maintenance status, capabilities, supply situation and current state of health/ rest.
-While it should be obvious why we need to know this stuff let me illustrate. Say the goal is to conduct a raid on an enemy outpost of several men with 1x light armored vehicle with medium machine gun. Am I a Mech Infantry Platoon Leader with 2x M2A3 Bradley Fighting Vehicles, 2x medium machine guns, a gaggle of light machine guns and 30 some odd decently trained fit soldiers? Am I an SF A Team leader with a dozen very well trained very fit guys, probably a couple of medium machine guns, maybe a DM/ sniper rifle or two? Am I a leader of a local guerrilla group with a dozen guys of very questionable fitness levels armed with a mix of civilian military pattern (AK/ AR/etc) and hunting rifles whose standard of marksmanship is hitting an 8″ paper plate 8/10 times at a hundred meters?
-Are my guys healthy and well rested or have they been fighting out in the woods for a week or two strait with maybe 3 hours of broken up sleep between guard shifts per 24 hour period? Have they been well fed or have we been on starvation rations? Do we have enough ammo/ batteries/ etc or are we short?
-What I am getting at is that the honest no crap capabilities of your force matter significantly when you go to make and then ultimately try to execute a plan. If your troops can’t hit squat past a hundred meters then a ‘long range ambush’ from 400 meters is just a waste of ammo. If your troops can’t get their fat non muscular selves over an 8 foot wall then you better come up with a plan that doesn’t involve climbing over the wall. If your only potential ‘covert operative’ is a white guy with a crew cut, USMC tat’s and a Southern Drawl you are not going to infiltrate the local La Raza branch.
-Make reasonable plans based on the force you have, not the one you wish you had.
(If you missed part 1 of this series, you can check it out here.)
Now that you’ve done your due diligence and hopefully been able to go around to a few local groups and see what they have going on it’s time to start laying down the groundwork for your first meeting. Putting on a successful first event is vital as it will set the tone for the rest of events you organize as well as helping generate vital momentum. Let’s get right in to setting things up:
Step 4: Choose Your Topic
Your first topic is going to determine what sort of people you draw and the more engaging and fun your topic is the more likely you will be to have people return to a second meeting. Your meeting topic will also determine what sort of venue you need to secure. As we mentioned in the last article all the examples in this series will be based around a “skill based meeting” so for our first sample meeting we’ll choose “fire building skills.” Everyone loves building a fire and this is an accessible topic for people whether they’re brand new to this or have been at it their whole lives.
5: Choose an Instructor
You’re most likely instructor for your first is event is yourself, but if you have other people who have agreed to help you put on your first event I would highly recommend that you share the instruction responsibilities to avoid fatigue and make best use of everyone’s skill sets. Since the most likely situation is that you will have to instruct the first few meetings yourself it’s highly recommended that you come up with a cheat sheet (some people who are a whole lot more professional than me call them “outlines”) that you can refer to during your course along with any examples or items you might need during the presentation. Over the years I’ve found that hands on classes tend to work the best and help winnow out the preppers who just want to talk about theory and what’s hot on YouTube from those that will get their hands dirty and actually DO.
6: Choose a Venue
Based on what type of topic that you are teaching you will now have to look for a venue. There are three common types of free venues that I’ve seen new prepper groups go with and I’ll present those here for your consideration. The three most common venues I’ve seen are community buildings (schools, library meeting rooms, rec centers, etc), public parks, and restaurant meeting rooms. I recommend staying away from restaurant meeting rooms if at all possible since they can often be noisy and don’t lend themselves well to a wide variety of hands on tasks (the looks you get when bringing in materials to teach knife sharpening or fire starting can be priceless though). The best place I’ve seen to start tends to be a park pavilion since they can usually be reserved ahead of time and allow you outdoor space to spread out and accommodate a decent amount of people. Remember to make sure that your venue is clearly marked out and easy to find with concise directions and organizer contact information for people who will be attending.
Once you’re done with the above three steps you set a date and get ready for the fun. In the next article we’ll discuss the administrative side of things as well as how to keep your momentum and scheduling going after the first meeting.
The post Starting Your Own Survival/Prepping Group Part 2: The First Meeting Groundwork appeared first on How to Survive It.
Many people who are in the survival and prepping community will eventually come to the point where they realize that starting or joining a well-organized support group is a must in order to increase their chances of making it through a catastrophic event. Unfortunately after being involved in the survivalist and prepping community for the last 10 years I have never seen any other point where people are more likely to fail than get it right.
Most of the people in this community tend to be individualists and have social skills ranging from amazing to abysmal, with a disproportionate amount of people falling at the “abysmal” side of the spectrum. So getting a group together and pulling in the same direction can be pretty difficult. The goal of this series of articles will be talking about different types of groups common in prepping the current prepping community, and outlining how to start a few different types of groups in a step by step process.
Step 1: Researching groups in your local area
This step is often forgotten by a lot of people who run off with a bunch of enthusiasm and then after a few months usually fall flat on their face because of lack of time, lack of attendance, social conflicts within the group, or a host of other failure points.
When people tell me they are interested in starting a group in their area I usually recommend that they go onto Meetup.com and peruse survival forums to see if someone is already doing something similar. This will save you duplicating effort and it’ll also quickly become apparent if there are big holes that are not being covered by other groups.
Step 2: Attend some local meetings
If you’ve already looked into several local groups and found that they’re similar to what you want to do I strongly recommend attending a few of their meetings. You may not learn anything new but you will likely meet some of the local community personalities and if nothing else you will also learn from the mistakes other people may be making in how they hold meetings. Take a notebook with you and if it seems appropriate try to get contact information from anyone in the groups that you think you might want to meet in the future.
Step 3: Decide what the focus of your group will be
This is a difficult one and I recommend sitting down with a pen and paper and writing down a mission statement and a plan for what you want your group to be at the outset.
A strong vision is vital to keeping the group focused and productive and not degenerating into a social circle where people just forecast the same repeated doom and gloom message. There are a few common types of prepper groups but for most of the examples in this series of articles we will be focusing on starting a “skill based meetup group” as a farm team for a “Mutual Assistance Group,” or “MAG” for short.
The above three steps should occupy anybody who puts effort into them for at least a month. Be slow and deliberate as you go through this process and your efforts will pay dividends when things start speeding up in the “Identifying Helpers” and “Setting Schedules” phase.
The next article will detail how to choose venues, pick a first meeting topic, and advertise your meeting.
The post Starting Your Own Survival/Prepping Group Part 1: Planning appeared first on How to Survive It.
If you’ve bounced around our website, read any of my books or the books I’ve consulted on (Steven Konkoly’s Perseid Collapse series) or ever listened to any of the podcasts where I’ve been a guest, you have certainly heard of the BOLT Kit. Simply put, the BOLT Kit is the realization of the vision of what we believe the bug out bag should be. The difference between every other bug out bag you’ve ever heard of and the BOLT Kit is a focused relocation philosophy that is underpinned by a plan, the gear and a skill set necessary to make it a success. You can find a more detailed look at the BOLT Kit and what makes it unique here.
As great as that original post and the previous paragraph are, this post is about the relocation concept and philosophy that allow the actual BOLT Kit to function effectively. As I stated in the earlier post…
At Practical Tactical, we believe in developing a plan in advance of the chaos that will keep you from becoming a refugee should you ever have to leave your home due to an emergency. We think of it as the software to go along with the hardware (read as gear) of preparedness. If you leave your home or primary residence without a definite destination and a well thought out and practiced plan on how to get there, you have instantly become a refugee and that’s a bad spot to be in. During a time of crisis, history has shown us that the life of a refugee is cold, hard and short. Whatever you do, you do not want to become a refugee.
In and of itself, that’s pretty self-explanatory. Don’t go anywhere unless you know exactly where you’re going, how you’re going to get there and oh by the way, make sure you’ve practiced your plan. But stick with me as we take a deep dive on this idea and look at it a bit closer.
So events have conspired to force you to leave your primary residence and it’s time to go, but where are you headed? We believe that there are several reasons you may have to leave your home that do not announce themselves as the apocalypse by crashing down in the capital letters with a dramatic score of music. In other words, there are a wide range of incidents that could force you from your home that are not the end of the world, but more of a personal, local or regional crisis type such as a house fire, a flood or a protracted period of severe weather or severe weather impacts (think crippling ice storm that lasts for weeks or the aftermath of Super Storm Sandy).
In these types of events, heading off the grid may not be in the cards for several practical reasons. The situation could be that despite this event that has thrown your world into chaos, life still goes on all around you and you still have to head in to work or your children still have to go to school. Who knows. It could be something as absolutely commonplace as you’ve decided to sell your home and you have to be out of the residence before your new home is ready and you need to stay in the area to finalize the sale. This is why having a scalable approach built in to your BOLT plan makes a lot of sense. If the situation dictates you can still fully activate your plan, but if it’s not some teotwawki level event you have given yourself several totally viable BOLT hole options.
As a part of your overall all BOLT plan, you develop BOLT holes appropriately distanced from your primary residence according to the incident level and threat you are facing that extend out from the location of your primary residence in concentric circles. Imagine a ringed target. Your home is the bulls eye and there are BOLT holes placed along each of the outward expanding rings of the target. Based on the severity of the incident, your BOLT holes are correspondingly further out on the pattern from your primary location and ideally will cover all 360 degrees of the pattern.
LEVEL ONE: If a pipe bursts and floods your home or a septic system backs up and renders your primary residence unlivable for a few weeks, you could have a BOLT hole set up just minutes from your location where you have arranged to stay with a neighbor, a family member or a close friend or maybe your plan is to check in to a local hotel for the duration of the event. If your home is completely destroyed in a tornado or a hurricane and the duration of your crisis event is possibly measured in months and not days or weeks, you may want make other arrangements. LEVEL TWO: The next level of your plan would go into effect if the entirety of your local area is impacted by an event like a contaminated water supply or an earthquake that destroys most of the local infrastructure. In a case like this, your BOLT hole would need to be farther from your primary residence to take you outside the threat area. Family and friends are always an option if they are located in the region that fits the plan, but you should always explore all of your options. As you can see, this concept can have as many rings as you deem necessary (LEVEL THREE, LEVEL FOUR, etc.) based on your situation with the ultimate destination of your BOLT plan taking you to your final and most long term BOLT hole location. Because no plan holds up to first contact, you can arrange to preposition a cache of supplies at each of the stops along the way that will supplement your original BOLT Kit and help you make it to your next BOLT hole should the ever evolving situation and facts on the ground dictate you continue to move.
I hope this sharpens the BOLT concept for you as you develop your disaster plan. Keep in mind that in order to successfully effect your own survival…whatever the situation…you must embrace the idea that there is more to the story than your gear or even your plan. To give yourself the greatest chance of success, you must develop a solid plan, outfit your kit based on that plan and support it with the skill set necessary to use that gear, then put it all to the test in real world practice. If you are resolute in your motivation and meticulous in your preparation, you will sleep well knowing that you and your family will be ready whenever the balloon goes up and that peace of mind is what the daily hard work of preparedness is all about.