The Bergmann Scenario

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My friend Bergmann made these two videos this past year, and if your primary plan is a “Bugout”, you might want to watch these and understand what you might be getting yourself into. As I’ve said in other posts, you will very rarely if ever make your primary plan a Bugout”. Bergmann has his reasons, […]

I’m Up, He Sees Me, I’m Down!

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  I decided to re-post this here after getting some inquiries about why I like this type of range over a square range. The A-BC Drill is conducted in every RBTEC class, and gives the students a firm grasp of the reality concerning the real world application of movement during fire over uneven terrain. ____________________________________________________________________________________________ […]

Teaching Your Kids Survival Skills, Just Like They Did In The Old West

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Teaching Your Kids Survival Skills, Just Like They Did In The Old West

Those of us who have kids must take them into consideration in our survival planning. As parents, we want to protect our children from harm, which could very well cause us to do everything for them. But in doing so, we can inadvertently create a more dangerous situation for them.

Granted, all children need to be protected, especially small children. But as they grow, they need to learn the skills which allow them to become more independent. Please note that this is different than just being granted independence; it’s not about authority, but rather skills and knowledge.

In the Old West, children were given as much responsibility as they could bear. This required parents knowing their children and what their limits were. It also required the parents to train their children, giving them the skills and knowledge to be able to effectively fulfill those responsibilities. This also meant having the character to do the chores, without mom and dad having to get after them.

When Mom and Dad Are Gone …

But the real test of a child’s responsibility was when they were left alone. While this did not happen very often, there were times when it did, especially in the case of a single parent (where the other parent had died). But what would happen to the children if the single parent died while away from home? There were countless dangers in the Old West, ranging from marauding Native Americans to wild animals. Death could happen at any time, and when it did, the children were left alone.

Turn Drive Time Into Fun-Filled, History Time With Your Kids!

How long they would be left alone would depend a lot on the circumstances. If something happened to someone who lived in town, it would be noticed immediately. But for those who lived on isolated homesteads, it could be days or even weeks before anyone was aware that children were being forced to live on their own and care for themselves. Only then would the community rally around to help them.

Parents wanted to avoid such a situation. They wanted to train their children so that if something happened to them, their children would be able to care for themselves and survive. This caused children to grow up fast on the frontier, learning skills that we would normally avoid teaching our children until they were much older.

At 10 years of age, most children knew how to start and tend a fire, care for the livestock, work the farm, and shoot a gun accurately. Some would have the responsibility of hunting for the family’s food. Others would be working alongside their parents, tilling and harvesting the fields. There were no idle hands on the frontier.

But Not Just the Old West

Teaching Your Kids Survival Skills, Just Like They Did In The Old WestA survival situation would probably be much like the life they had on the frontier. As such, the same need to train our children would be imperative.

To a child, many of the things we would consider survival skills are exciting and fun to learn, giving them the motivation to learn, without having to know why they are learning them. Let’s use the example of teaching them gardening and animal husbandry, important skills for long-term survival. So, you start gardening and get some animals to raise, having your children work right along beside you. With the animals, that will be no problem, as most children naturally gravitate toward animals anyway, especially small ones. With gardening, most kids love to get their hands dirty.

Crazy Gadget Makes Every Window A Cell Phone Solar Charger

Shooting is probably the easiest skill of all to teach your children, as they usually have a fascination with guns, anyway. Besides, if you’re going to have guns in the home, you should start teaching them about gun safety at an early age. That’s the only real way of protecting them from accidents. If they are too young for real guns, start them with Nerf guns or Airsoft. Then you can move them up to pellet guns, before taking the big step up to the real thing.

Most other survival skills can be taught on camping trips. If you make camping a normal part of your family’s recreation early on, your children will grow to love it. Each trip can be planned around one lesson: teaching them a new survival skill, but talking about it as a “camping skill” rather than as a survival skill.

Tap into the natural curiosity and sense of adventure that your children have. Use their questions about life and things that they learn in school as a springboard for teaching them new survival skills, whenever you can. In other words, make survival training a part of your day-to-day life and your children will see it as normal — not something with ominous potential.

What advice would you add on teaching kids survival skills? Share your thoughts in the section below:

Commentary On A Good Southern Prepper 1 Video About Training

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I watched a video this morning from southernprepper1 that was pretty much what I’ve been telling students for years. Unless you have some serious, and long term training, you are not going to be doing any offensive operations from your base of operations, retreat/domicile. What will you be facing for the most part? Will it […]

Are You Training? A Firearm Training Option!

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I have linked to many firearm articles on Prepper Website throughout the years.  Almost every article suggests getting some training to effectively use your firearm.  There are all types of training out there from shooting paper targets at the range to spending a whole weekend with a group going through real “live fire” tactical training.  

The issue for many is that the more you move away from target practice, the more expensive it gets.  Ammo, traveling, lodging, etc.. costs $.  One option and experience was recently shared with me by Jesse.  Read his experience and thoughts below.  

I have something I want to share with you that my wife surprised me with this weekend. My wife took me to a virtual shooting range. You use real guns, a full sized Glock and a standard run of the mill AR15. They have been converted over to run on CO2 so it could cycle the bolt for a feeling of recoil. The screen was similar to a golf simulator. You pointed the gun at the screen and shot then you could see your point of impact. Starting out we did some gimmicky things like shooting fun targets and zombies for the 1st half hour but it took a serious turn for the 2nd half hour. We started the police simulator where you were the 1st responder in an active killer situation at a school, an office, and store. There were some CCW type situations as well. They made you react to the situation as it unfolded in front of you and you had to deliver accurate shots to stop the threat in real time.

If you treat this like a training session and reflect on your decisions and shot placement and how your grip and all that lined up with what you believe your skill level is. It was a reality check but also confirmed that some of my techniques were good. All In all,  for 50 bucks for my wife and I for a 1-hour session… well worth it. We are going back for sure. Hope you can find something like this near you and maybe you can share this with our community.

The place we visited is Virtual Marksman in North Canton, OH.

I remembered I watched this video a while ago and I found it again. This is almost the exact thing we did. Our guns were a little different. We didn’t have the round count stopper we just ran the guns till they were out of CO2.  The computer program in the video is the same one I used and I did see a scenario that I actually did. There over 400 different scenarios you can do where you could be in a shoot or a non-shoot. Aaron Cowan explains it far better than I could.



Thanks for your time and God bless.


If you are interested in looking into TI Virtual Training, click this link and add your city to the Google Search to see if you have one close to you.


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Firearms Training Drills

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Firearms Training Drills As preppers we have the same responsibility as all gun owners. We must respect the weapons we carry and store them safely to avoid adding tallies to the growing case against guns. Knowing your weapon and knowing how to use it makes the weapon worth having. Without these two things you cannot …

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Brushbeater: Quantity vs. Quality: Putting the Handheld Radio in Context

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Here’s some really good info and clarification by Brushbeater on the differences between Survivalist commo and Tactical commo. ____________________________________________________________________________________________ ON JUNE 11, 2017 BY NCSCOUT During the Communications presentation at the PatCon I focused primarily upon the common radio equipment among preppers and survivalists- CB radio because of its inherent commonality (and overcoming potential weaknesses) […]

HAM Advice From Warrior Capitalist

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Here’s some good HAM advice ____________________________________________________________________________________________ PRIVATE DEFENSE NETWORK COMMUNICATIONS By Randy Bartlett       June 2 QUICK STEPS TO YOUR AMATEUR RADIO (HAM) LICENSE. The ham radio license seems one of the bigger preparedness mysteries. Communications will be very important in any event, whether a local event, a regional event (usually weather), or an all out, nationwide […]

Raising Dogs for Hunting and Farm life!

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Raising  Dogs for Hunting and Farm life Austin Martin “Homesteady Live“ Audio in player below! DO you want a dog for your farm that will not chase and kill chickens, and that will still retrieve birds and track wild game for you? Find out how to get that in this episode of Homesteady Live. Since … Continue reading Raising Dogs for Hunting and Farm life!

The post Raising Dogs for Hunting and Farm life! appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

So Now What, Anything Constructive?

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I did a post on May 6th that pointed out how ridiculous some of the “Moolisha” claims on both sides (antifa and the “Right”) were, and how they’ve shown there is very little in the “Responsible Power” category that is being put out on social media. The bottom line to my “power” comment is due to […]

Aesop Nails It

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Only a fool would escalate a situation when they can’t realistically envision the logical outcome. We know something is up, and we know there is nefarious intent by not only the Soros crowd who is openly supporting Antifa, but by our own deep state players who are disguised as benevolent politicians. Obviously they will use […]

Selco Talks “Training”

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Selco gives some of his real world input into an important topic. ____________________________________________________________________________________________ Skills And Training May 5, 2017 by Selco I have just finished delivering another ‘Mile In My Shoes’ (MIMS) down here in the Balkans. As always it was a great event with many insights both for the students and me. Having finished the […]

5 ways to get survival strength without a gym

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5 ways to get survival strength without a gym There is no getting around physical fitness. No matter what type of arsenal you have or how much you have prepped you need your health and your strength. This landscape has changed a lot over the last 5 years when preparedness and fitness were butting heads …

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7 Critical Concealed Carry Skills That Will Keep You Alive

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7 Critical Concealed Carry Skills That Will Keep You Alive

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Most people who apply for a concealed carry permit fail to take into consideration that effective concealed carry is actually a lifestyle change.

Approximately 80 percent of the licensed students I work with report that they usually don’t carry on a daily basis. Most say they carry only in their vehicle or while traveling.

Along with the decision to carry daily come some changes in how you go about day-to-day life. Your attire most likely will need to change. (I recommend concealed carry over open carry.) If you carry off-body in a purse, bag or other off-body manner, this will require some adaptation.

Once you’ve established carry methods, your training should continue. This article will cover some key areas to cover in your concealed carry training.

As always, practice and live by the four critical gun safety rules:

  1. Treat all guns as if they are loaded.
  2. Don’t let the muzzle cover anything you are not willing to destroy.
  3. Keep your finger off the trigger until the sights are on target and you’re ready to shoot.
  4. Be aware of your target and what’s around it.

With that in mind, let’s examine seven critical skills you need to practice for everyday carry:

1. Getting the handgun into play if needed

Can you draw your handgun from its place of concealment efficiently? For most folks, getting the pistol out of concealment will present its own challenges and must be practiced. It will require more effort than when drawing from a strong-side open carry setup. Also, what about getting the gun back into its hiding place once the incident is over? You will want to establish a good grip while drawing (a fundamental of marksmanship), and your concealment method should help facilitate this. Practice your concealment draw method now, ahead of any stressful incident in the future that you hope never happens.

2. Defensive accuracy

If you must shoot, then hit what you’re shooting at. There is bullseye accuracy and then there is self-defense accuracy. Your goal should be to blend the two…. meaning you want a combination of speed and accuracy. Shooting lightning fast is great — to the extent you can hit the intended target. Shooting well is a perishable skill; you must hone this skill with solid training. Visit for some excellent drills, or spend some lesson time with a qualified trainer.

3. Running the gun

I always have suggested to students that shooting accuracy is only half the battle. Skills such as emergency or speed reloads, malfunction clearances, one-handed shooting with both right and left hands and again drawing the gun from concealment are just some basic skills every armed citizen should develop and feel confident doing. I teach and practice these skills constantly, both for students and myself.

4. Moving to and shooting from cover

A deadly force confrontation happens in seconds. However, the situation may allow you escape and avoidance (which you should do if at all possible), or you could find yourself needing to take cover. Cover is any object that hopefully will stop incoming bullets. If possible, you should add into your training the act of moving to and shooting from cover.

The Self-Defense And Hunting Weapon That Doesn’t Require A Firearms License!

7 Critical Concealed Carry Skills That Will Keep You Alive

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For most people, this will be a different experience that can change how a person grips their handgun and sees their sights. Practice shooting from kneeling, sitting and prone now, instead of always keeping your feet planted in one place and hoping you will never have to move into an uncomfortable shooting position.

5. Dim light shooting

You must be able to identify your threat! There have been far too many tragic cases where a person shoots their own loved one believing they were an intruder. I ALWAYS carry a handheld flashlight and know how to shoot with the light in my support hand. You should have this skill, too. After all, approximately 60 to 70 percent of crime happens in dim light conditions. Depending on the technique used, this may mean firing your pistol one handed … a skill I recommend you train for. A weapon-mounted light system may or may not be appropriate, depending on the risk of flagging innocent people and your carry method.

6. Distance shooting

While most encounters (over 90 percent) occur from about seven yards or less, there could be a situation where a longer shot must be made. With the increase in active shooters, a shot from 12 to 25 yards or farther may be the only option. With a handgun, this can be a challenge for even the seasoned shooter. Train to make center mass shots at least out to 25 yards with your EDC handgun. As with all shooting, your marksmanship fundamentals must be constantly reinforced.
Distance shooting will test these skills.

7. Scenario based or “force decisions” training

Scenario-based training is one of the best techniques you can employ to prepare for an encounter you hope never comes. This type of training should be done in a highly safe and secure manner with qualified trainers, and only with Simunition or airsoft guns. Force decisions (also called reality based training) will challenge you mentally. Your mental prowess is, in my opinion, where the rubber meets the road. You can be the best bullseye shooter in the world, but making decisions under immediate high stress and reacting appropriately is what this type of training is all about. We use this training often. Many students begin to realize where their strengths and weaknesses really are.

A Final Thought

Remember that everywhere you carry, there is now a gun on the scene. Don’t let your gun be used against you. There are many cases of open carry or even concealed carry guns being taken right off the citizen carrying them. Carry discretely and securely.

As a fellow trainer once told me: “Train well and train often.”

What advice would you add? Share your thoughts in the section below:

Trapping Food When You’re On The Go

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Re-posted from MDSA Over the years I’ve had a number of people ask me what I suggested for trapping in an “On the move, supplies on my back” survival scenario. My usual suggestions are snares if you are travelling very light (example, in the smock kit), and at least four 110 Conibears body hold traps […]

Another SHTF Reality From Selco

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Reposted from MDSA Selco gives us some reality about a typical “Tacticool” SHTF day. Reality is a bitch, and being able to trade is an important survival skill. ____________________________________________________________________________________________ Ordinary Day’ March 28, 2017 by Selco   A lot of people wonder what an ‘ordinary day’ was like during the SHTF. I was thinking on this […]

Are you training to Survive or to Kill?

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Are you training to Survive or to Kill? James Walton “I Am Liberty” Audio in player below! We often get the best look at ourselves when we separate from what we do on a daily basis. In survival and preparedness heavy introspection is so important. It’s a lonely and oftentimes thankless effort that only shows … Continue reading Are you training to Survive or to Kill?

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Should You Shoot to Wound?

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Should you shoot to wound?  I talk a lot about lethal force, and one concept comes up almost universally. I call this idea the leg shot syndrome. The leg shot syndrome is expressed by the statement “I wouldn’t aim to kill; I would shoot the robber in the leg”. I believe I know where this […]

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Training Survival: Building Shooting Muscle

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Since you carry a gun for self-defense or to save the life of another, then you are concerned with combative firearms skills rather than shooting merely for the experience of shooting.  To reach this goal, you engage in training, mostly in the form of practice on a range.  How close you get to your goal […]

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Radiation’s Effects And Materials To Mitigate Them

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Was advised it might be a good idea to repost some of my nuke related posts, so here you go. 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 […]

Brushbeater Commo 4

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Here’s another in a group of posts from Brushbeater on Commo gear and use. ____________________________________________________________________________________________ Radio Question #3: My Response, of Sorts ON MARCH 29, 2017 BY NCSCOUT So with the thought experiment of a fictional occupation of the Southeast and setting up a listening and signal outpost, a lot of solid answers have been posted. […]

Brushbeater Commo 3

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Here’s number 3 in a group of posts from Brushbeater on Commo gear and use. __________________________________________________________________ Keypounder Sends- Radio Question III ON MARCH 22, 2017 BY NCSCOUT Rather than present a situation and require a complete response, Question 3 will be presented with a background brief, statement of conditions, and then a series of questions, with […]

Brushbeater Commo 2

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Here’s another in a group of posts from Brushbeater on Commo gear and use. __________________________________________________________________ Resolving the Clandestine Radio Question ON FEBRUARY 19, 2017 BY NCSCOUT Continuing on from this original question from Keypounder, several close answers were posted, and generally the logic was in the right direction. That being said, here’s the correct answer: “You […]

Brushbeater Commo 1

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This is the first in a series of Brushbeater commo posts that I’ve reposted to give you some ideas on commo gear and use. __________________________________________________________________ Keypounder sends- ON FEBRUARY 5, 2017 BY NCSCOUT “You are the lead station operator in the Resistance receiving station mentioned in the first question.  You have received the message sent […]

Avoid being tracked be the tracker!

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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!

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REPOST: SurvivalRing Guide #1: Five Most Important Skills for New Preppers…Set Your Foundation First (plus bonus Bug-out section)

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“Hello…We’re the Preppers…” The “Prepper” movement has grown exponentially in the last few years, thanks to reality TV shows such as “Doomsday Preppers” (aka DDP), and all the knockoff shows and repeats on many other networks, as well as online TV show services like Hulu and NetFlix. Mainstream print and online media is following in […]

The post REPOST: SurvivalRing Guide #1: Five Most Important Skills for New Preppers…Set Your Foundation First (plus bonus Bug-out section) appeared first on SurvivalRing.

Book Review: Advanced Surveillance

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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 […]

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List of Great Books on Bartering

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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.

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“Third Tier” List of Recommended Specialty Books

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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….

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10 Reasons Children Should Learn Archery

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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 […]

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“Second Tier” List of Recommended Specialty Books

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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.

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Non-Fiction Must Read Books

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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!).

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Why Have a Personal Preparedness Mindset

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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 […]

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Radiation’s Effects And Materials To Mitigate Them

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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 […]

The Insanity Of Thinking “It’ll Be Different This Time”

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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 […]

Mainstream Sedition?

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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 […]

The Nuke-O-Spot Report

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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 […]

Book Review: Meditations on Violence

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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 […]

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A Realistic Bug Out

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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”, […]

The Neighborhood Protection Teams And Ignorant, Defeatist “Know It Alls”

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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

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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

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WRSA Sends More Of The Grid Down Hospital “Patient Assessment”

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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 […]

The Basics: LP’s, Op’s And The NPT

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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 […]

Mountain Guerilla Clandestine Pistol: #1 Overview

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This weekend I was fortunate to be able to attend John Mosby AKA Mountain Guerillas Clandestine Carry Pistol Course.

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.


The cost & importance of learning. Clubs, Groups & Schools. Plus the advantages & disadvantages.

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The cost & importance of learning, clubs, groups & schools. Plus the advantages & disadvantages.

When it comes to long term survival, the skills start with choosing the right clothing & equipment. After that you have to learn how to use that equipment & you need to learn how to manage if you should lose that equipment. Survival schools are generally expensive, this is because they have to put in a lot of time teaching people the skills, & time cost money if you are running a business. Some schools will teach you primitive skills, others will not. Some schools will teach you how to survive if you get lost in the bush, others may teach you how to survive long term. But it will all cost you money.

Bushcraft groups are good & they will teach you some survival skills. Again, some may promote the use of modern tools & equipment, where as others may teach you more primitive skills. In general, you will pay a yearly fee which is used to pay for your insurance cover. Survival groups fall roughly into the same category as the bushcraft groups, a mixed lot which may or may not teach you what you need to know. Basically it depends on the individual members, some will be more knowledgeable than others, but in the long run they can’t teach you what they don’t know themselves.

It is well known that in order to survive long term in a wilderness situation, you will need to learn primitive skills, & your equipment & tools will need to be low tech. Modern equipment is not made to last, batteries will go flat, items will break & wear out. You need sustainable methods & primitive gear. If you start off with pre 19th century equipment you will never drop below that level of comfort. But if you start off with all modern gear, then sooner or later you will be thrown back into the stone age.

Now let’s look at another kind of club or group, an 18thcentury living history group. Most again will charge a yearly membership fee, & it must be said that not all living history groups are equal in the benefits that they offer the survivalist. But, the potential for learning is still there, you simply may have to put in more effort to gather some members together who have the skills that you need to learn.

Our group, the New England Colonial Living History Group does not charge any membership fees or training fees, it is all free. However, we do not carry any insurance either, our members are covered by the Civil Liability Amendment (Personal Responsibility) Bill 2002. For many years I payed for our group insurance out of my own pocket so that lower income families could afford to join our group. Eventually, I had to stop paying out of my own pocket (there never were any accidents or insurance claims). When you think about it we go with groups of friends out bush for various recreational activities, & no one ever questions if there is insurance cover. We all take personal responsibility for ourselves, & we watch out for the safety of others.

The advantages of joining a group like ours is that our activities cover a wide range of interests. We can advise on equipment & clothing, & we teach people all the skills they may need for free. Individuals do not have to participate in any activity if they do not wish to, but remember, in a shtf situation, there will be NO insurance, NO doctors & NO hospitals. If you want to cover yourself, use your money to purchase a good modern medical kit & take it to group meetings. Also carry a personal first aid kit in your pack. That way if you cut yourself or smack yourself in the head whilst learning archery, you can patch yourself up & keep going.

Kids in general love participating in living history. It is an opportunity to do something which is fun & educational & they get to share this experience with there parents or carers. In shooting clubs, archery clubs & fishing clubs you will learn only so much, very little of what you do learn will prepare you for survival. In a group like ours though you get to learn everything; you learn what is the best equipment & how to use it. You learn how to repair your equipment & in the case of archery & fishing, you learn how to make your own from scratch with no modern tools.

Some living history groups have splinter groups such as a militia group where you can learn battle tactics. Some groups are purely Ranger groups & again, battle training is a normal part of their activities on top of all the other skills you can learn. All Living History groups are family oriented, so all the family gets to join in one way or another. On top of all this learning & training, living history groups are a lot of fun. If you are serious about long term wilderness survival, I recommend you inquire in your area for a living history group, be it medieval period or 18thcentury or somewhere in between.

Our Group’s Official Forum:  

You will also find links to other groups in other areas & countries on our forum.

WRSA Sends: The Grid Down Hospital

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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 […]

A “Why” In Militia Failures, or “Ode To A Special Snowflake”

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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 […]

Keeping Retreat “Priorities Of Work” In A Realistic Perspective

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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 […]

Welcome to National Preparedness Month! Now Get Ready!

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 National Prepareness Month

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 Momshould 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:

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.

Click Here to Register

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!

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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!

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Reading About Prepping Isn’t Enough

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ad-500x500Over 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: 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.


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Civil Air Patrol For Prepper/Survival Training

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Civil Air Patrol survival training

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.

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The Easiest Way To Train Pigs To An Electric Fence

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The Easiest Way To Train Pigs To An Electric Fence

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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.

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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.

The Easiest Way To Train Pigs To An Electric Fence

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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:

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Why You Must Take Advanced Shooting Classes

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Advanced Shooting Classes 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!

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Using REAL EVENTS to Educate, Train and Practice

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Written by Guest Contributor on The Prepper Journal.

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?

The post Using REAL EVENTS to Educate, Train and Practice appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

Guilty By Association, Demographic Or Profession?

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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 […]

The “Bushbastards”

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  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 […]

The Devil’s Brigade

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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 […]

Guest Post: The Role of Warfighter in Intelligence

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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, […]

CASCADIA RISING: FEMA Will Hold A Drill To Prepare For A 9.0 Cascadia Subduction Zone Earthquake And Tsunami June 7-10 2016

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The Cascadia Subduction Zone off the coast of North America spans from northern California to southern British Columbia. This subduction zone can produce earthquakes as large as magnitude 9 and corresponding tsunamis.

The Cascadia Subduction Zone off the coast of North America spans from northern California to southern British Columbia. This subduction zone can produce earthquakes as large as magnitude 9 and corresponding tsunamis.


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.

150720_r26752-865Think that can’t possibly be true?  Surely I’m overstating the danger.  Think again.  Remember this article from The New Yorker that we shared with you a while back that warned us The next full-margin rupture of the Cascadia subduction zone will spell the worst natural disaster in the history of the continent.


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.

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12 Reasons Why Well Trained and Equipped People Fail to Survive

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fail to survive

These men had the will and courage to survive

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

  1. Failure to plan – you need to take the time to survey the situation and make a plan and then follow it.
  2. Panic – Avoid becoming irrational, frantic and disorganized.
  3. Inaction – You do nothing; you fail to take action because of fear, carelessness or laziness.
  4. 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.
  5. Low self-esteem – you lack confidence in your abilities, so you fail to take action.
  6. Lack of teamwork – you fail to work others or let rivalry affect you.
  7. Lack of training – you don’t know what to do, so you do nothing or you do the wrong thing.
  8. Prolonged exposure or fatigue – you lose your will to survive from lack of food, water, sleep or exposure to weather, heat or cold.
  9. Inability to endure – you lack the physical stamina, due to lack of conditioning or poor health.
  10. 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.
  11. A poor attitude – your attitude will affect your own ability to survive plus that of others in your group.
  12. 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.


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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:

Band Aids
Knuckle bandages
Fingertip bandages
Antiseptic wipes
Alcohol wipes
Butterfly closures
Nitrile gloves
Triple antibiotic salve
Individual eye wash (x4)
Triangle bandage

Trauma kit:

Rolled gauze (x4)
Nitrile gloves
SOFT-W tourniquet
OLEAS modular pressure bandage
Bloodstopper Compress Dressing
SAM splint (1.5 ft)
3×3 gauze pads
Gerber foldimg knife
Sharpie (black)
C.A.T. tourniquet
Ranger bands
8-10 feet duct tape
Triangular bandage
Mylar blanket(s)
Ibuprofen tablets
6″ light stick
Self-adhering wrap (x2)
Celox z-fold hemostatic gauze (10 ft)

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If You Hunt You Exist, If You Trap You Sustain

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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.

Screen Shot 2016-05-02 at 12.04.36 PM

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.

Screen Shot 2016-05-02 at 12.07.24 PM

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.

Screen Shot 2016-05-02 at 12.09.49 PM

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.

Screen Shot 2016-05-02 at 12.14.21 PM

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

Bruce “Buckshot” Hemming



American by BIRTH, Infidel by CHOICE

DTG’s “SHTF Series” Parts 1-4

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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.

combat hiker

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.

kids packs

  • 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.

Kelty pack

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.

Vermont 1501

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.

2 Qt canteen

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

FILBE bladderSimply 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.

compressed ass wipeThere 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.

wiggys bag

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.

winter shelter

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:

survival sleeping bag

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!

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Zombie Survival Camp!
Highlander “Survival & Tech Prep

Zombie Survival Camp MarkOn 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.

3-6-16 Groupofgirls_1Mark 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.

3-6-16 InstructorsWe 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!

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2016 – Ultimate Survival Challenge – Level 1

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The ONLY 3-Day – Family Friendly – Survival Training in the USA That Covers:

UST-Fall-Survival-Class-Underpaint-Final-1000pxThe 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:Side Photo Collage-Website-Promo-2

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!

View from Our Survival Camp

View from Our Survival Camp Location

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

Craig-NavCost / 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.

Primitive ShelterWhat 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!

Review: Muscle Roller Stick

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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

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Your Handgun Does Not Make You Bulletproof

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Handgun Training

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.

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Handgun Scenario Discussion #6

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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

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