Friday, November 8, 2019

Friday's Thoughts and Other Stuff (Networking)

University of the Fraser Valley
School of Business networking breakfast (ca 2015)
University of the Fraser Valley

During tough times, you and your family may be scrabbling to get the things you need to survive, such as appropriate shelter, water, food, protection, and ....

So, ....

Who do you turn to for help

 Ron Thomas from FEMA
sets up the Incident Response Vehicle (IRV)
for communications out of southern Texas,
following hurricane Dolly (ca 2008)
photograph by
Barry Bahler

For certain events, the local, state, and federal government are going to be there for you, albeit in a few minutes, hours, or days.

Needless to say, ...

The government will have access to money for shelter, think Section 8, food, can you say food stamps, and other services, like healthcare for you and your family

Marines assigned to Combat Cargo
Sailors assigned to the Wild Cards of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 23
load humanitarian assistance and disaster relief supplies
onto an MH-60S Sea Hawk helicopter
aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Peleliu (LHA 5). (ca 2010)
photograph by
Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class
Ian Campbell

During some disasters, the State's Governor will activate the National Guard to assist victims. They may provide shelter, water, food, and protection.

These services are usually groupings of tents for shelter, bottled water or large water tanks for ... water, Meals-Ready-to-Eat for food, and confiscation of firearms and knives with roving patrols for protection in the tent cities.

Nongovernmental Oganizations
Belgian Red Cross Volunteers (ca 2005)
photograph by
Georges Jansoone

Yeap, one of the evil, vile NGOs ran by Mr. George Soros, Mr. and Mrs. Bill and Melinda Gates, or one of the Kock brothers may come to your assistance during an event.

Not really ; - )

More likely it will be the American Red Cross, the Salvation Army, a regional religious organization, or another established group that will provide the basics of survival for you and your family.

A sailor setting the broken leg of another sailor
after an accident on deck (ca 1897)
Halftoneh by
F. Brangwyn

That's right, your place of employment may have programs that you can access during a crisis. These might be their Employee Assistance Program (EAP), sick time donations from other workers, taking advanced vacation time, health insurance, borrowing from your 401K, and many, many others.

Ooooh, ...

Don't forget, your coworkers might be able to individually help you and your family by having a unique skill, like welding, sewing, cooking, and ... prayers.

Friends from the "Wild Side Story"
Rena Del Rio, Logan Carter, Peaches Del Monte
and Tony Del Valle  (ca 1974)
photograph by
Lars Jacob Prod

Before I begin, I don't want you to take this the wrong way.

But, ...

What can your friends do for you?

How about your extended family? What skills and equipment do they have that could help you and your family, during tough times.

Friday, August 9, 2019

Leaving and Moving

Dear Preppers and Survivalists,

Moving Day in the Jungle (ca 1900)
Saint Louis Post-Dispatch
illustration by
Walt McDougall and Syd Griffin

The Past
As some of you know, I have been writing about prepping for over ten years. In the beginning, it was once a week then my writing expanded to two and three times a week. I even wrote a book, Prepper: Surviving the Tough Times Ahead, so I could tell you about my passion, emergency preparedness.

But, ... Times change

The Present
The threats of five and ten years ago are still here. The natural disasters of earthquakes, flash floods, winter storms, and many others events haven't receded. Our financial problems kicked down the road, for future generations to solve, have only grown larger with our country borrowing another $1,000,000,000,000 to feed our government. The adversaries of our country, Russia, China, Iran, North Korea, and others have acquired military power and weapons that could harm our homeland in a single day or week.

Additionally, ...

The so-called Troubles have started here in these United States. We have members of the political class calling for the harassment, assault, and ,yes, the murder of a certain segment of our citizenry for their political, religious, and personal beliefs. As far as I can tell, their followers and others are unwilling to condemn these comments as outrageous and unworthy of our elected leaders. Some of their followers are even using violence to impose their ideology on us.

The Future
What does this mean for you and your family?

First, I have published Prepper: Surviving the Tough Times Ahead, so you, your family, extended relatives, friends, and co-workers can access the book for free.

I have also started exporting my articles from here to there, so you and your family can easily find my thoughts about prepping. No longer will you have to wade through days and weeks of unrelated material or political commentary. This will also allow you to tell friends and family about a one-stop source for prepping when they ask about surviving the tough times ahead.

Second, I predict, we will be seeing a resurgence in prepping because the economic, political, and international problems facing our country, and almost every other country, will come to the forefront for many people and families.

Lastly, I have a choice, like you and your partner, I can continue in my ways, overeating, smoking/drinking, irresponsible spending/borrowing, and many other faults or I can make some life changes to insure my family's happiness and survival, in the years ahead.

Post Script
If for some reason, you can't find an article. It's either in the archive, moved to one of the chapters in Prepper: Surviving the Tough Times Ahead, or it has been deleted.

Thursday, July 4, 2019

Independence Day July 4th, 2019

The Signing of The Declaration of Independence (ca 1873)
painintg by
Charles Édouard Armand-Dumaresq

Like any other day, this day is an ordinary day for the rest of the world.

But, ...

For these United States, it is the 243nd anniversary of the founding of our country.

So, ...

Happy Independence Day

Hanabi in Nagaoka
Kiyoshi Yamashita

Friday, April 12, 2019

Friday's Thoughts and Other Stuff (This Is It)

Dear Friends, Family, and Readers,

Küste am Coast Path Path
nahe Land's End, Cornwall, England (ca 2013)
photograph by
Dietmar Rabich

This is It
 I'm finished irregularly posting about how you and your family can get prepared for the tough times ahead.

My reason is simple. I want to advance in my career, and the only way to do that is to start studying after work hours. Hours that I would normally use to write about preparing for the tough times ahead.

But, ...

I still have the writing bug, so you might see my articles around the internet, at places like Say Uncle, Prepper Website, and others. Plus, I will be updating Prepper: Surviving the Tough Times Ahead to be a solid source of information.

With that said, ...

I recommend you visit Yer Ol' Woodpile Report. It comes out every Tuesday, for your reading pleasure, with Ol' Remus' take on the threats facing you and your family.

Another weekly recommendation is Say Uncle for his daily dose of whats going on in the firearms world with a sprinkling of prepper information.

Another firearm related website that I regularly read is Gun Free Zone. He has a sense of wit that hopefully you will find educational in our fight for freedom.

An excellent source for prepper-type information is Prepper Website. It is a collection of articles from various sites on the internet.

There are many other sites offering great insight into the coming tough times, like Of Two Minds, while others offer insight to our current political situation, such as Ace of Spades HQ and Clusterfuck Nation, to name two.

Sorry, ... I wanted to remind you.

More likely then not, you and your family have most of the stuff you will need to survive the tough times ahead; however, you are probably lacking enough food, especially long-term food storage such as hard winter wheat, long grain enriched white rice, and dried beans.

Friday, April 5, 2019

Friday's Thoughts and Other Stuff (Emergency Evacuation Kit)

Dear Preppers and Survivalists,

Lot FLeeing Sodom,
a woodcut from the Nuremberg Chronicle (ca 1493)
scan by
Michel Wolgemut and Wilhelm Pleydenwurff

Last week, I wrote about some of the areas that you and your family need to think about as you pack an emergency evacuation kit.

So, ...

As promised, let us look at some kits.

Hand Bags for Sale in a Shop,
in Cartagena, Colombia (ca 2016)
photograph by
Joe Ross

The Small Tin
Popularly known as an Altoid Tin Survival Kit, these pocket-sized kits were first suggested by John Wiseman, of the British Special Air Service (SAS)

The idea behind these small kits was to always have the means to survive, in your pocket.

Instructables: freeza36 - An Assortment of Altoid Tin Survival Kits

Survivalist Prepper - Six Altoids Tin Survival Kit Ideas

Blade HQ - How to Make an Altoids Survival Kit

ManMade - How to Build Your Own Altoids Tin Survival Kit

Belt or Waist Pack Kit
As you can see, the small tin carries very little, a method of making fire, several band-aids, some thin cordage, water purification, and not much else.

So, ...

Some folks will build bigger kits.

YouTube: Animal Man Survivor - Belt Pouch Survival Kit

Survival Weekly - Belt Pouch Survival Kit

YouTube: outofeden_bushcraft - Belt Survival Kit

Loadout Room - A Simple SERE Survival Belt Kit

Instructables - Survival Belt Kit

YouTube: WayPoint Survival - Belt Survival Kit

COL Robin Olds preflights his F-4C Phantom
wearing a SRU-21/P Survival Vest, PCU-3/P Torso Harness, B-3A Gloves,
a Pilot's Survival Knife (attached to the Harness),
and a .38 Special GI Revolver carried in a GUU-1/P Holster,
attached to an M-1956 Equipment Belt (ca 1967)source
USAF Museum

Vest or Smock Kit
The next sized kit, that I didn't mention, is a vest or smock kit. These kits are worn as a piece of clothing or over clothing.

Needless to say, ...

You will see this type of kit used by military pilots.

YouTube: mandgsuvival - Load Bearing Vest/Survival Vest/Bug Out Vest/Field Clothing: Review

YouTube: Backcountry Pilot - Knowledge Series: Survival vest philosophy 

YouTube: The Survival Outpost - Wilderness EDC: My Smock Survival Kit

YouTube: Bush Lore Survival - SAS Smock: A Concept for Survival

The Pack
Next up is the classic bugout pack.

YouTube: Sensible Prepper - DIY Cheap Walmart Get Home Bag for Survival

Sensible Prepper - DIY Walmart Premium Bug Out Bag

YouTube: Coporals Corner - My Urban Get Home Bag

YouTube: EverydayTacticalVids - Urban Survival Kit/Get Home Bag: Gray Man Bag & System For When Things Go Sideways

YouTube: Sage Wanderer - My 72 hr. Get home/bug out bag.

YouTube: Wasteland Prepping - Best 72hours+ Bug Out Bag?

Huge Pack
I think I told you this, ...

There are people planning to carry a huge emergency evacuation kit.

YouTube: The Survival Outpost - Gear Review: Bug Out / Long Term Survival / INCH Gear

YouTube: Black Scout Survival - ULTIMATE BugOut Bag Part I

YouTube: Black Scout Survival - ULTIMATE BugOut Bag Part II

YouTube: The Angry Prepper (Urban) - Cold Weather Bug Out Bag 

Didn't Fit
Lastly, ...

Here are three links that just didn't fit.

YouTube: Pro Survival Kit - Survival Kit Basics

Field and Stream - Make a Survival Kit out of an Altoids Tin

YouTube: Bushcraft Ninja - Canteen Survival Kit

My Thoughts
As you can see and read, there are many different opinions on what to pack in your emergency evacuation kits, so you are going to need to do some thinking.

Wikipedia - Special Air Service

Wikipedia - John 'Lofty' Wiseman

Friday, March 29, 2019

Friday's Thoughts and Other Stuff (Emergency Evacuation Kit)

Dear Preppers and Survivalists,

Emigración Elegante
illustration by
Tomás Sancha Lengo

The Container
Last week, I focused on the surplus military packs that you and your family might encounter as you get ready for the tough times ahead.

While, ...

The same is true for the commercial packs. You will find small packs, like waist packs, medium-sized packs, such as book bags, larger packs, like mountaineering packs, and extra-large bags such as a huge rolling cloth suitcase that are appropriate for an emergency evacuation kit.

And, ...

You have still more options such as the hard, rigid, plastic containers, that you and your family will find at the local farm and home stores or sporting goods stores that are made by companies such as Plano, Durabilt, and others

Either way, ...

 Schloss Hartheim (ca 2012)
photograph by

Where Are You Going?
That's right!

An event has happened. Your family has grabbed their emergency evacuation kits, and you're headed out the door.

Where are you going?

Are you headed to the local shelter that has been setup by emergency services, that has cots, warm blankets, hot food and drinks, books to read, and helpful volunteers?

Or, ...

Are you headed across the state to your deadbeat brother-in-law's trailer because the hurricane took an unexpected hook?

Or, ...

Are you fleeing the country, a few years ahead of the coming political genocide?

I'll stop because you get my point. The situation, your mode of travel, and other factors such as the weather will determine the contents of your bag.

First Set of Three Warning:
First, what you carry for your emergency evacuation kit and what you carry the kit in is up to you, your partner, and your family.

Second, people have these elaborate kits with all kinds of 'stuff' that might not be appropriate for you and your family.

Third, if you came here looking for 'The List,' you are going to be disappointed

So, .. Let us begin.

My Bag and Its Contents (ca 2012)
photograph by
Ishikawa Ken

The Contents
First, I want you to think about the priorities of life. No, not finding a good partner, raising your children to be successful people, having an enjoyable career, and other things, even though; those are important. I'm talking about, ...

Oak Island Residents
living in tarp shelter after Hurricane Ike (ca 2008)
Patsy Lynch
Federal Emergency Management Administration

You and your family will survive about three hours, in extreme weather, without appropriate shelter. This means, you and your partner need to immediately protect your family from Mother Nature.

This can be as easy as renting a hotel room, as simple as building a sunshade from a queen-sized bed sheet, or as complicated as fabricating a wilderness shelter.

So, ... Let us look at some options.

First, you and your family can buy a family-sized tent. These are available from your local sporting goods store, national hunting and fishing stores, and online.

But, ...

They are heavy, can be expensive, and inappropriate for an individual.

Next up is the quintessential blue tarp. They come in various sizes and colors, are versatile, and inexpensive.

But, ..

They are going to require some cordage, better known as rope, to be useful for family and some practice to setup an appropriate shelter.

Third, for individuals and families with tight budgets, you can use salvaged plastic sheeting and improvised cordage to make a tarp shelter.

Lastly, you and your family can learn to make improvised wilderness shelters, such as debris shelters, a lean-to, or other natural shelters, even log cabins.

Second Set of Three Warnings:
First, if you think, you and your family are going to pack a bag and forget it, you are sadly mistaken. You will need to practice with the contents of your emergency evacuation kit, so you learn its limitations and can make improvements or substitutions, as needed.

Second, some people will suggest expensive 'stuff,' such as tents, cordage, and tarps, that might not be appropriate for you and your family.

Third, there are other options for you and your family that I will explore, over the next few months.

Plastic Water Bottle (ca 2018)
photograph by

Depending on the situation, your emergency evacuation kit might only need to contain a liter bottle of water. For other situations, your kit might need to provide water for multiple days, thus requiring a water filter and a method of purifying the water.

Let us look at some options.

First up is the easiest method, that I know of, for providing water in an emergency evacuation kit, buy several liter bottles of water and put them in your family's bags.

Next, you could purchase several durable and reusable plastic water bottles. They are always available, used, from our local charity store. A step up is the metal, usually aluminum, water bottles with various logos.

A third option is the surplus metal canteens carried by soldiers, from different counties, many years ago. Heck, even the military plastic canteens are pretty good options for your family.

Another option is the hydration bladders from companies like Camelbak, Platypus, and others

Needless to say, ... All of the above options need to have water in the containers, long before the event forces you to quickly leave your home, which leads to my next point, water filters.

Water filters will allow you and your family to obtain water, so you don't have to carry a lot of water in your packs, if you plan to walk during your escape from an event.

Third Set of Three Warnings:
First! If you plan to obtain water along your route, you are going to have to plan and recon your route, so you know where the water can be obtained.

Second, water filters clean the water by removing impurities. Water filters don't remove oil, soluble chemicals, or certain diseases.

Third, water filters aren't water purifiers. They can be two different pieces of equipment or techniques.

Защишаемая территория города Хельсингборга
photograph by
Vitold Muratov

During a short-term emergency evacuation, food is overrated, especially when you and your family can survive several days or weeks without food.

However, ...

Tell that to your young children and loving, caring partner when the children are hungry and wanting something to eat.

So, ...

Depending on where you store your emergency evacuation kit will determine what kind of food you can store. Let me explain, ...

Canned foods will expand and contract, from heat and cold, if they are stored outside Glass containers are inappropriate for backpacks unless you protect them from breakage. Those flexible foil pouches filled with snack foods and drinks are also susceptible to damage from heat, cold, and being punctured.

And, ...

The same goes for all of those so-called survival foods, like Meals, Ready to Eat (MRE), Snackies, Survival Bars, and others.

And, ...

Make sure your family likes the food in your emergency evacuation kits because, ... If they don't eat it, they will still be hungry and ... complaining.

But, ... I have some suggestions.

Look at the snack section of your grocery store. You and your family have lots of choices, now a days. Fruit bars, snack bars, energy bars, crackers and cheese, pita chips and humus, and many others. You can also investigate the canned foods aisle. They have meat, cheese, and other items in those flexible foil pouches that you could use for your kit. Lastly, you can make your own items, like hardtack..

Fourth Set of Three Warnings:
First, there are many people selling expensive so-called survival food that may be inappropriate for you and your family, and I'm just not talking about your wallet.

Second, you will need to rotate the food in your emergency evacuation kit. It can't sit in your bag, year after years, because it will go bad, especially if exposed to heat and cold.

Third, don't forget the can opener, if you are packing canned food.

37mm Antiaircraft gun manned by soldiers
of Battery F, 70th Coast Artillery,
at Wickham Anchorage and Viru Harbor, Solomon Islands
photograph by

This is one area that preppers and survivalists go overboard because they are worried about protecting their family during an emergency evacuation.

Rightly so, ...

Because history is full of stories of rapes, murders, and other crimes during an emergency evacuations.

But, ...

You're going look really funny, leaving your home carrying a bolt-action rifle with a scope, in .308, .30-06, or 8mm Mauser, a defensive rifle with a light and a red dot scope, a SKS, AR-15, or AK-47, a defensive handgun, in .38 special, .40 cal, .357 magnum, or .45 ACP, and a pocket knife, a belt knife, and a machete.

So, ...

I suggest you and your partner purchase a pocket knife for everyone in the family and a concealable defensive handgun for you and your partner with a holster and several reloads, either magazines for a pistol or some speedstrips for a revolver.

Then, call it good for your emergency evacuation kit because you and your family are going to try, very, very hard to avoid any confrontation.

Fifth Set of Three Warnings:
First, some shelters restrict a family's freedom to carry a defensive weapon, like a knife or handgun. This means, you might have to violate the law to carry protection for you and your family during an emergency evacuation because you will need to carry your knife and defensive handgun concealed.

Second, you think I'm joking. I have met people that planned to carry a long rifle, a defensive rifle, a handgun, a backup handgun, a pocket knife, belt knife, and a machete and several reloads for the rifles and handguns, during an evacuation.

Third, this is probably the second item that you will want to store separately from your emergency evacuation kit because you should always be carrying your defensive handgun.

A Promotional First Aid Kit
used on the first
direct transatlantic flight by airship
Science Museum

Medical Care
More than likely, most preppers will buy a standard first-aid kit from one of the big box retailers and call it good. That is O.K., but these first-aid kits have their limitations, usually limited to bandaids and several disinfectant wipes. Plus, they are relatively expensive for what you receive in a prepared kit.

So, ...

You might want to assemble a first-aid kit, like the one suggested by the American Red Cross.

Next, you are going to need a supply of any daily medications that you and your family normally take. These medications should be stored in their original bottles with an original label. It might be a good idea to also keep a copy of your prescription in a safe place, in your bag.

With that said, ...

This is probably the only item that you will need to store separately away from your bag, especially if your emergency evacuation kit is subject to extreme temperatures.

Sixth Set of Three Warnings:
First, druggies and other villains are going to covet your medications, especially the narcotics, so you probably want to be very careful when you take your medicine.

Second, you and your family need to get off your 'drugs,' like nicotine, alcohol, sugary drinks, and other things that impede your health, during good times and bad times.

Third, you and your family need to practice your medical care skills becasue the first-aid manual might not be there.

Two New York National Guardsmen
signalling with flags (ca 1915)
Library of Congress

Now a days, everybody has a cellphone, but what happens when the batteries die?

So, ...

You need several methods of signalling potential rescuers. One method is waving a bright piece of cloth, like a bright orange pillow case or half of a bright yellow twin sheet.

Another method is using a whistle to signal a potential rescuer. Some of the new whistles are pealess, so they work and work and work.

The third method is a mirror. If you have some extra cash, buy a 'real' signal mirror. More about that later.

Seventh Set of Three Warnings:
First, more than likely, you and your family are going to want to be found, so make sure you have several methods of signalling potential rescuers.

Two, some people think they will be able to shout to signal a rescuer. They are mistaken. A person can shout for only a few minutes before getting horse

Third, ...

Lastly, ...
This isn't an all inclusive list of items or areas that you need to consider for your family's emergency evacuation kit because some people would say that I, incorrectly, left of ...

Lighting - a small, inexpensive AA flashlight with spare batteries.

Duct Tape - gray, green, or multiple colors

Cash - to buy your way out of trouble

With that said, ...

I'll be back next week writing about some situations and the things, you and your family might want to carry in your emergency evacuation kits.

Friday, March 22, 2019

Friday's Thoughts and Other Stuff (Emergency Evacuation Kit)

Dear Preppers and Survivalists,

Immigrants carrying luggage, at Ellis Island, New York
Library of Congress

The Bag
As you read last week, you have some inexpensive options when it comes to how you are going to carry your emergency evacuation kit.

Well, ...

You have more choices.

Boy Scouts Unload Their Equipment
from the baggage car
of the Southwest Chief at Raton, New Mexico (ca 2011)
photograph by
Steve Wilson

Commercial Packs
There are three types of commercial packs, that come in a variety of colors, they are internal frame, external frame, and no frame packs.

The no frame backpacks are just like they sound. There is no metal or plastic frame to support the backpack, straps and pads.

Don't think these packs are cheap because they don't have a frame. A quality frameless backpack can set you back $75, $100, $125, 175, and even $250. Ouch!

Did I mention, they come in a variety of colors?

The next type of packs are the internal frame backpacks. These packs are just like they sound. The internal frame pack has its frame inside the pack. The internal frame can be metal, fiberglass, or a plastic.

The external frame pack is attached to a frame that you can see. It is outside the pack. For most people, these are old school packs.

Unless you are talking about ...

U.S. Soldier,
carrying a M.O.L.L.E. Rucksack (ca unk)
P.E.O. Solider

Military Surplus Packs
The military surplus packs, usually, have an external frame, so the military can swap out a damaged pack without getting rid of the perfectly good frame or vis-a-versa.

Like the commercial packs, they come in a variety of sizes.

U.S. Army Canvas Buttpack
Vietnam - Equipment and Uniform
David Brubaker

There is the so-called buttpack, usually attached to the web belt, enter service during the Vietnam War. Originally, the buttpack was made out of canvas, but it didn't last long in the tropics. The military quickly, looking back 50 years, started using nylon, for the buttpack and other equipment.

Needless to say, original canvas packs are relatively rare and expensive while original nylon buttpacks are getting rare.

This pack is approximately 12 inches wide, 8 inches tall, and 5 inches deep. It was designed to carry small loads, such as one meal, a few pairs of socks, and not much else. Of course, a prepper could probably stuff a lot of little stuff in the buttpack.

U.S. Army Nylon Waist Pack

Waist Pack
Of course, the U.S. Military's buttpack, whether canvas or nylon, has issues, so the military modified an idea from industry, the camoflauge fanny pack. Like any other small waist pack, it has limited carry space.

Medium A.L.I.C.E. Pack

A.L.I.C.E. Packs
At the same time, these United States' military was replacing canvas with nylon, they developed a nylon rucksack that many preppers still love, after being out of service for over 20ish years.

This pack has a large main compartment with three smaller pockets on the outside and a pocket inside the flap; additionally, it has attachment webbing, for adding other pouches, like the one and two quart  canteen pouches. It requires straps, that can be removed, to be carried like a backpack. Plus, the rucksack can be mounted to an external frame.

Needless to say, these United States' military realized the medium sized rucksack was too small fro certain missions, mainly in cold, very cold climates, so they developed a large sized rucksack.

The large rucksack has three pockets on the outside with three smaller pockets above them, and a pocket in the flap. It requires a frame and straps to be carried. It is big enough to carry a fully loaded medium sized rucksack, in it's main compartment.

Needless to say, ...

It's designed to carry bulky, lightweight items, such as an arctic park, pants, their liners, mittens, wool long johns. Not, crates of ammunition.

U.S. Soldier,
carrying a M.O.L.L.E. Rucksack (ca unk)
P.E.O. Solider

Of course, these United States' military changed as technology and their experiences showed that the old equipment wasn't meeting their needs.

So, ...

We have assault packs, medium-sized packs, large-sized packs, and even equipment bags that you and your family might consider for your emergency evacuation kit.

Which One
Like any other decision, to be made by your family, you have to do you research.

And, ...

Think about what you are going to carry in your emergency evacuation kit because what you carry determines the size of your bag.

GSiEP - Friday's Thoughts and Other Stuff (Emergency Evacuation Kit)

The Hiking Life - Backpack

Backpacker - Frameless Rucksack

REI Co-op - Frameless Hiking Backpacks

REI Co-op - Internal Frame Hiking Backpacks

Backpacker - Why I Still Carry an External-Frame Pack

REI Co-op -  How to Choose a Backpack

Outdoor Adventures - How I Pack My Frameless Backpack

Philmont Scout Ranch - How To Pack A Backpack

David Brubaker - Vietnam: Equipment and Uniform
Wikipedia - All-purpose Lightweight Individual Carrying Equipment

Reviewer Tips - What’s The Difference Between a Backpack vs a Rucksack [Ultimate Guide]

Friday, March 15, 2019

Friday's Thoughts and Other Stuff (Emergency Evacuation Kit)

Dear Preppers and Survivalists,

A homeless man, in Paris, France (ca 2005)
photograph by
Eric Pouhier

Other Opinions
Needless to say, ... Other people will disagree with last weeks suggestions. They think you and your family need to carry different or more 'stuff.'

Take FerFAL, from Modern Survivalist, he suggest carrying eight items, for your everyday carry.

In another article at The Prepper Journal, they have an article with 11 preppers showing off their every day carry.

Lastly, Happy Prepper, from Happy, suggests carrying a bag worth of stuff in you pockets which leads to my next point.

It is rare, very rare, that a prepper or survivalist writer makes enough money, from their writing, to solely focus on writing about the tough times ahead. Like you and your partner, they have day jobs that they work to earn the money to shelter, feed, protect, cloth, and have fun with their families.

So, ...

Some writes will publish articles with the newest, hottest, and ... most expensive 'stuff' for you to buy, so the writer can earn a small commission. An item that might not be appropriate for you and your family.

In other words, ...

People will try to make money off you and your family's efforts to get prepared for uncertain times.

So, ...

You need to think critically when you and your partner read any article or watch any video because they may not have your best interest in mind when they suggest an item for you and your family to purchase

With that said, ....

It use to be, many decades ago, that women seemed to be ambivalent about prepping. If you were lucky, your partner tolerated your efforts. If you were very unlucky, your partner tried to sabotaged your preps.

Now a days, women are contributing articles, videos, and even advocating for other women to get prepared for the tough times ahead, like ...

Jaime, from Guildbrook Farm, in this video about her Prepper EDC. Christy, from, giving some suggestions about a women's every day carry, and Jennifer, from City Girl Prepper, talking about her products.

Needless to say, there are many more articles and videos for you and your family to read and watch explaining every day carry.

But, ...

There are limitations to every day carry, so you and your family may want to consider packing an ...

Emergency Evacuation Kit
What ever you call them; INCH bag, GOOD bag, Bug Out bag, 72-Hour Kit, Ready to Go bag, Survival Kit, or ..., the emergency evacuation kit is a prepacked bag that you keep handy, so you can quickly leave an area, during an event.

Contents of an American Red Cross
'Ready to Go' Bag (ca 2006)
FEMA Photo Library

The Bag
Before I begin, I have to remind you.

You and your family probably have 80% of the equipment and supplies that you need to survive a short-term event, so ...

Homeless Man in the Park,
with his worldly possessions in a plastic bag
San Francisco, California (ca 2007)
photograph by

Plastic Bags
Every day, the state's child protection services swoops in and removes a child from their home. Sometimes these government employees will arrive with an armed escort to insure everyone's safety, but sometimes they don't. Either way, they always arrive with several black plastic bags to quickly scoop up some of the child's belongings, so the children will have clothes, a favorite toy, and their school books.

So, ...

You and your family can carry your emergency evacuation kit in a black plastic bag or a plastic shopping bag.

But, ...

These plastic bags are fragile, short-lived, and you have to carry them in your hands. Plus, they are not as durable as a ...

A Young Lady Carrying a Cloth Bag,
with long straps (ca 2007)
photograph by
Paul Pajo

Cloth Bag with Straps

An inexpensive alternative for your emergency evacuation kit's bag could be one, two, three or more of those cloth shopping bags with long straps that allow you to carry them over your shoulder, so your hands are free to carry a young child or baby, a  defensive weapon like a rifle or quarterstaff, or allow you to use your hands to climb over an obstacle.

But, ...

Cloth shopping bags aren't a durable as a ...

South Korean Tourist's Suitcase,
in Paris, France (ca 2014)
photograph by

During the Cuban Missile Crisis, in October 1962, my grandmother bundled up her children and fled Norfolk, Virginia, to her family in small town Ohio, as my grandfather deployed to stop the second round of soviet missiles from landing in Cuba.

As they entered the airport, in their hands were three suitcases, an adult-sized case and two child-size cases. These suitcases contained some clothes, all the currency the family had, a favorite toy and their woobies.

After checking in at the airline counter, with the attendant taking their suitcases, they boarded a aeroplane to fly to safety, away from the nuclear tipped missiles' target of Naval Station Norfolk

Just think, ...

If they had to have carried those suitcases a long distance, everything but the children, the currency, and the woobies would have been left on the side of the road.

In other words, ...

A suitcase will make a passable emergency evacuation kit's bag, if it is going to be transported in a vehicle or carried a short distance, especially if the suitcase has wheels.

Like most preppers, I don't have a lot of money for my preps, so I try to save money, where I can. One method of saving money is making an item, for me and my family.

Drawstring Backpack,
from a pattern (ca 2018)
photograph by

Drawstring Backpack
These are probably the simplest backpack for you and your family to carry the items of your emergency evacuation kit.

But, ...

The strings, that go over your shoulders, are too thin. They will cut off the circulation to your arms, if the items in the bag are very heavy.

So, ...

A Reproduction WW2 Soviet M35 Duffel Bag (ca 1942ish)
photograph by
Epic Militaria

Soviet WW II Backpack
During the Great Patriotic War, the soviets needed to equip a large number of soldiers, so they used rudimentary equipment. One of these pieces of simple equipment was a canvas backpack.

As you can see, ...

The pack is basically a wide strap, attached at the two bottom corners, with the strap wrapped around the top of the bag to keep it closed.

A pack that could be fabricated by anyone handy with a sewing machine or a needle and thread.

Zanna Rayner and Luke Cowart help a child
choose a back pack during a book bag drive,
in Killeen, Texas (ca 2015)
photograph by
 Staff Sgt. Ange Desinor

Of course, every family with children will have one or two book bags/backpacks that could be pressed into service as bags for an emergency evacuation kit.

Or, ...

They could be purchased from the local charity store.

Needless to say, the sky is the limit when you start looking at buying a bag for an emergency evacuation kit. You have multiple choices, like color, size, number of pockets, thickness of material, new, used, military surplus,or ...

Either way, ...

You are going to need to fill that bag with useful equipment and supplies.

GSiEP - Friday's Thoughts and Other Stuff (Every Day Carry)

The Modern Survivalist - EDC: Top 8 Must have Items

The Prepper Jounal - Every Day Carry: Show Us Your EDC!

Happy -Prepper's Eeryday Carry (EDC)

Guildbrook Farm - Prepper EDC: A Practical Woman's Every Day Carry - EDC: A Woman's Every Day Carry

City Girl Prepper - Introduction

The Peaceful Prepper - An Urban EDC for the Single Gal, Update 2015

The Spruce Crafts - How to Sew a Durable, Reusable Grocery Bag

Spoonflower - This DIY Drawstring Bag Is a Cinch!

Global Antiques - WWII Original Soviet Infantry Canvas Rucksack

Friday, March 8, 2019

Friday's Thoughts and Other Stuff (Every Day Carry)

Dear Preppers and Survivalists,

A Man Sitting Under a Tree (ca unk)
Herman T Bohlman Collection
OSU Special Collections & Archives

Two Sisters
Before I begin, I want you to consider something, ...

Two little girls, 8 and 5 years old, survived for 44 hours with nothing but the clothes on their bodies, the contents of their pockets, and the knowledge in their heads.

That's right, ...

They had no food, no water, no bug out bag, nothing but some clothes and wilderness training, from camping trips, their parents, and the 4H, according to the mass media reports, Here, Here, and ...

O.K. ... Back to my the blurb

Every Day Carry
Right this minute, empty your pockets.

That's right, put everything on the table, desk, couch, .. where ever you're reading this blurb

Don't reach for anything, either!

What do you have?

I have a cellphone, an Apple 6S IPhone, a set of keys, and my wallet.

What are you wearing?

I'm wearing a watch, a Seiko 5 Sport, a leather belt, another set of keys, my work keys, a pair of jeans, a dress shirt, wool socks, and a pair of steel toed leather boots.

Not much is it?

What about what is in your head?

Can you build a shelter with materials at hand? How about start a fire? Find and gather water? How about boiling the water, so it's safe to drink?

Notice, ... I didn't ask about food.

Can you signal a potential rescuer? Treat a minor injury?

I'll stop because you probably get my point ...

What is in your head, your knowledge, is as important as what is in your pockets.

And, ...

These two little girls prove this again.

So, ...

As you get prepared for the tough times ahead, I want you to learn some wilderness skills.

The first skill is ...

Hug A Tree
If you read the article, about the two girls, they traveled over a mile from home, before stopping. An adult will travel, if I remember correctly, over 6 miles before stopping!

So, ...

The first skill that I want you to teach your partner, your children, and yourself is to ...

Stop and Hug a Tree

Next, ...

Stay Warm

Lastly, ...

Help the Searchers by answering their calls

Needless to say, ... I'm going to stop here because I have included three great links about the "Hug A Tree and Survive" program that offer a lot more information, for you, your partner, and your family.

More Information
If you have been reading here for any length of time, you know I like providing you with lots of information because you and your family may have to use your knowledge to cover a unique situation.

So, ...

There are three more links about surviving getting lost.

Shelter and Fire
The next bushcraft or wilderness survival skill that I want you and your family to learn is how to build a primitive shelter and make a fire.

Needless to say, ...

There are more links, to some videos on these subjects.

So, ...

Let us move on to what, I think, you should be carrying in your pockets.

The First Plastic Credit Card
with a Magnetic Stripe (ca unk)
photograph by

Credit or Debit Card and Some Cash
That's right!

You need to have a credit card/debit card with overdraw protection with some money in your wallet or purse. Depending on your credit limit, you will be able to rent a hotel or motel room to provide shelter for your family, buy some food from a restaurant or grocery store to feed your family, make the copay at an urgentcare or emergency room to provide medical care for your family, and do a host of other things to provide for your family, including buying a pizza for when your partner doesn't feel like cooking

The next item, I think, you need is a ...

A Nokia Cellphone (ca 2012)
photograph by
CLS Research Office

What one device can summon emergency medical care, armed response, summon a vehicle to take you home, to the hospital, or on a date, and get food delivered to your door?

And, ...

Has the ability to send a written message, take pictures, help your memory, and calculate a tip for the food delivery driver?

Needless to say, ...

A so-called smartphone allows you to download several applications, such as a mapping and compass app, first-aid app for you and your pets, and others, at a small fee or with advertisements.

The next item, I think, is a little controversial, especially in Great Britain, schools, airports, government buildings, offshore oil platforms, and a lot of other places. It is a ...

You, your partner, and your children need a pocket knife. A small one for cutting things like rope, notching a stick for a trap, and protecting yourself.

The knife doesn't have to be expensive, especially with the possibility that it might be confiscated by an overzealous security officer.

As an example, ...

I was able to purchase three knives for under $8.00, when one of the regional farm and home stores was clearing out their Christ Mass gifts, at the beginning of this year.

The item, I think, you and your family need is a way to make ...

Several Kinds of Gas Lighters (ca 2004)

When I was younger, I always had a lighter or matches on me. Now that I'm older and wiser, and a nonsmoker, I never have a way of making fire, except what I can improvise from the material around me.

With that said, ...

You and your family have several options.

You can carry a inexpensive, no name butane lighter like one you find at a convenience store, or a little bit more expensive model like a Bic. You and your family could purchase a fire steel then learn how to effectively use it.

Or, ...

You can go totally retro and carry a Zippo lighter.

Lastly, ...
These are the items, except for the credit card, every member of the family can carry in their pockets to increase their chance to survive during tough times, for a wide variety of events.

Needless to say, ...

There are other items thaat you and your family may want to have during certain disasters, but that is another blurb.

So, ...

I'll see you next week?

Outdoor Life - How the Carrico Girls Survived Alone in the Wilderness

Greater Philadelphia Search and Rescue - Hug A Tree and Survive

Adventure Smart - Hug A Tree and Survive

National Association for Search and Rescue - Hug A Tree and Survive

Bowhunter Ed - If You Get Lost

Sportsman's Vintage Press - On Getting Lost While Hunting

International Commission for Alpine Rescue - Predicting Lost Person Behavior

YouTube: TA Outdoors - Primitive Survival Shelter Build with Bare Hands: No Tools Needed

YouTube: Kullcraven Bushcraft & Survival - Survival Skills: Building a Primitive survival shelter with No ModernTools Part 1

YouTube: Kullcraven Bushcraft & Survival - Survival Skills: Building a Primitive survival shelter with No ModernTools Part 2

YouTube: Survival Lilly - Building A Primitive Shelter

YouTube: Tom McElroy at Wild Survival  - Easy Survival Shelter (Stay Warm and Dry)

YouTube: Norwegian Bushcraft - Winter Survival: 15 minutes shelter

YouTube: Smooth Gefixt - Winter Camping in a Quinzee Survival Shelter: How to build one!

YouTube: Shawn Woods - How to make a Weatherproof Cattail Shelter. Primitive Bushcraft Survival Skills 

American Red Cross - Mobile Apps