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105 Ways Your Life Will Change After TEOTWAWKI

TEOTWAWKI = The End Of The World As We Know It

For me, this term means something unimaginably massive has happened. An event that has thrust our world back into a pre-electricity, pre-grid power era.

TEOTWAWKI is not a small time emergency. It’s an event that throws all humans back into a prolonged mode of brutal survival.

How might such an event occur?

  • Maybe it’s a deadly highly infectious disease that wipes out 90% of the world population.
  • Maybe it’s a Nationwide EMP that causes unrepairable electrical infrastructure damage. Bad enough that it cannot be recovered before all hell breaks loose.
  • Maybe it’s a Nuclear Holocaust.

Whatever the cause, have you ever stopped to REALLY think about the exact things that would be different in your life after TEOTWAWKI? Doing so will give you a whole new perspective.

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1 – No More Mowed Lawns

Mowing will be a thing of the past. Mowing will be a complete waste of calories in a world where every calorie matters. Fuel will also be a rare resource not to be wasted on such trivial things as a well kept lawn.

Lawns will become waist high grass fields. Same thing goes for your local parks.

In fact, if there’s any fuel left, riding mowers will be used for anything but mowing lawns.

2 – No More Daily Traffic Jams (maybe permanent ones though)Traffic Jams

Without massive fuel distribution on a daily basis, we will run out of the energy needed to power vehicles. Plus, since everyone will be out of work anyways there will no longer be daily commuting.

However, there will be massive permanent traffic jams. These will be from all the vehicles that are left behind by people who abandoned them in panic.

Here are a few different fuel options to consider for after TEOTWAWKI.

3 – No More Video Games

This one is a no-brainer. Without electricity, you won’t be able to play your Grand Theft Auto, Xbox, or PlayStation. Bummer.

4 – Not As Many Pets – More Stray Pets

When food becomes scarce so will pet ownership. People will not be able to feed their pets or have time to care for pets. It’s a luxury that will end.

I personally consider my chocolate lab my best friend and family member, so he is part of my preps. However, for those who are not prepared, they will not have the resources to continue to care for them.

5 – No More Restaurants, Fast Food, or Delivery

Sorry, but you’re going to be cooking your own meals from now on. Hopefully, you’ve prepared and actually have food stockpiled to cook with.

Essentially, no grid electricity means no more businesses who prepare food for you.

6 – Real books Will Be Worth A Lot Morebooks cropped

Real, physical books with pages will be worth a lot. With no electricity, you have no computer and no eBooks. So physical books will become relevant again.

The best books will show people how to perform desired tasks such as Gardening or Fixing Things.  But a good fiction will become cherished as well.

7 – Urban Trees Will Be Gone

When winter hits people will need firewood for heat. The first place they will get firewood will be their own backyard trees. Tree vs freeze to death? Bye bye, backyard trees. Next up will be public trees.

Bottom line: In just a few years, there may be no more trees in the urban settings.

8 – No More Indoor Plumbing

Most people rely on water towers (gravity to create water pressure) to supply their homes with water. Water towers are filled by pumps and pumps require electricity. No electricity equals no indoor plumbing. Your sinks will be dry and your toilets won’t flush.

Just think about this. This is a major issue that will significantly decrease sanitation.

9 – No More Designer Weddings – Fewer Weddings in General

When you are just trying to survive, things like expensive weddings will be one of the first things to go. I see this as a positive myself.

My guess is that there will be fewer weddings in general.

10 – More Deaths Due To Basic Illnesses knuckle scratch infection

Medication manufacturers will not be able to operate. So your flu shots, antibiotics, and pain medications will not be as readily available.

Those who do have these won’t be sharing them willing. You might be able to barter for some, but it might cost a lot of high-quality gear or ammo. Why? Because someone who has life-saving medications has all the leverage.

What are you going to do, not trade them and risk death?

Many people won’t be able to afford them or just can’t find any access. So a harmless scratch may become infected and become your demise if TEOTWAWKI happens.

11 – More Children Born 

This is my best guess for the longer term, once the initial hell settles down. The first year or two after TEOTWAKWI there will be few pregnancies. Why? Because the majority of people will be in survival mode and don’t want to bring a baby into this horrible world.

However, once things settle down, survivors won’t have contraception or safe abortion options. Many suggest that sex is a human need and that we are wired for it. So healthy young couples in survival communities will end up having more than 1 or 2 kids. They might not want kids per say, but inevitably it will happen.

Like large American frontier family’s in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s.

12 – No More Professional Sports

When your survival is seriously in question, games and sports no longer hold interest. Not only that, but the athletes themselves will be with their families trying to survive as well.

Professional sports will be something that kids ask about around the fire at night. “Tell us about this thing you call Football and Fantasy Football?” It will be such a foreign concept to anyone young or born after TEOTWAWKI.

13 – Online Purchases Will No Longer Exist

Without electricity, there will be no internet. Without the internet, you can’t buy stuff online. Plus, there won’t be any nationwide mail services available either. So even if you could buy you wouldn’t be able to get anything delivered.

I enjoy writing for this blog, but if TEOTWAWKI happens this gig will be over.

The good news, I suppose, is we will no longer have to worry about our online privacy.

14 – No Emergency Services Available

If TEOTWAWKI happens, the emergency service providers will quickly become overwhelmed. The most honorable may attempt to “do their jobs” initially. But soon they will realize they need to stop trying to save others. And start worrying about their own families.

They will abandon their posts and head home to save their own families.

15 – Large Backyard Gardens Will Become More Popular

People who have access to seeds will attempt to grow their own food. That might be the easy part. The hard part might be protecting your backyard garden from scavenging neighbors.

Of course, you can’t rely soley on a garden for your food replenishments, but it should be one part of it.

16 – Seeds Would Become Worth a Lot More

Heirloom seeds will become worth a lot. Heirloom seeds yield both produce and harvestable seeds. Theses seeds can then be saved for the following year’s plantings.

If you know what you are doing, you can save seeds every year and replant them the next year into perpetuity. That’s obviously an amazing tool to have when food resources are scarce.

Plus, they will be amazing for bartering if you have extra.

Don’t be fooled tho. Just having these seeds without gardening skills and know-how will create a false sense of security. The time to start a garden is before TEOTWAWKI, not after.

17 – No More Movies or Fancy Actors / Actresses

Like professional sports, pretending to be someone you’re not in front of cameras will no longer be something anyone is interested in. And without electricity, you can’t watch them anyways.

After things settle out, there may be small skits that local survival groups put on for some evening fun. But that’s only if they sort out all their immediate survival needs first.

18 – No More Concerts or Fancy Musicians

I believe that local, acoustic, folksy music will survive. People will eventually play fiddles and acoustic guitars. However, mega concerts in stadiums will be a thing of the past.

To me, this is 100% fine. No more Beiber mania or watching Miley Cyrus doing lewd acts on stage. I could do without this anyways, thanks.

19 – Increased Neighborhood Waste / Stench

garbage pile

With no indoor plumbing or waste pickup services, neighborhoods are going to reek. Where will people put their trash? Best guess is they will dump their waste down the street somewhere in the middle of the night. However, it will just sit there in the sun and rain and fly and rodents will swoop in.

This is one of those things people forget to consider when preparing. Trust me, it will become a shitty problem to deal with.

20 – No More Flying


Without electricity, fuel will not be mass produced. Without fuel, planes won’t fly. So the skies will look like they did immediately after 9/11. They will be empty and they will stay empty.

No more flying across the country to visit family for the holidays.

21 – Limited Communications

HAM Radio

Cell phones won’t work. Telephones won’t work. So how are you going to call and communicate with family if the live several states away? The answer is you probably won’t.

Unless both parties have ham radios, with backup electrical generation systems, you won’t be communicating with them.

Without mail services, no letters can be sent either. So if you decide to try and get home after TEOTWAWKI you’ll be heading there blind. Not really knowing if they will still be there or even be alive.

22 – Roads Will Be Terrible To Drive – Many Impassible

Roads might be OK for a few years after TEOTWAWKI. However, without regular maintenance roads and bridges will quickly begin to fail. Potholes will get bigger and bigger, bridges will crumble and eventually fail.

Even if you could drive a few years after TEOTWAWKI (which is doubtful) you won’t be traveling at 85 MPH. You’ll be driving more like 30 MPH, if you’re lucky.

23 – Bikes Will Be Much More Popular

Since most vehicles will be useless, bikes will become popular for local travel.  Extreme caution will be necessary (especially immediately after TEOTWAWKI) since you don’t want to run into unfriendly strangers. But if you have to travel any distance, then a bike (especially a mountain bike on a secluded trail) will be something lots of survivalists will embrace.

Here’s a list of your best transportation options after TEOTWAWKI.

24 – Popular Recreation Will Be Gone

These expensive hobbies will be a thing of the past. Golf, bowling, skiing – these hobbies will vanish overnight. There won’t be any extra time to waste on such extravagant lifestyle activities.

25 – Rain Collection Systems Will Become the Norm

When the taps go dry, you’ll want to set up simple roof rainwater collection systems. You can collect an impressive amount of rainwater if you have barrels on each downspout.  When TEOTWAWKI occurs nearly everyone will start collecting rain water.

26 – Massive Unemployment

You will no longer have a job. At least not one in the traditional sense.

Your new everyday job will be surviving. Gathering resources, fending off unfriendly strangers and protecting your family. This is your new full-time job and it’s going to be the hardest job you’ve ever had.

27 – Hand Tools Will Become Worth More

Hand tools that don’t need electricity to operate will skyrocket in value. Not price in terms of paper money (it won’t be worth anything), but price in terms of bartering leverage. Real Value.

28 – People Will Take Up Old School Skills

Old school, pre-industrial age skills will come backing into high demand. You might be able to use these skills to barter or trade with neighbors. Sewing and mending clothes will be valuable. Resoling shoes and boots will become a necessary craft. Carpentry might be useful.

Using your hands to build or fix things will be important after TEOTWAWKI event. Here’s 20 valuable skills to barter with after TEOTWAWKI.

29 – Personal Sanitation Will Decrease

We already talked about indoor plumbing  and dealing with human waste will be a huge issue to deal. But so will everyday cleanliness. Daily showers will be a thing of the past. Baths will be the norm and once a week if you’re extremely lucky.

The process of finding water and carrying it into the house will be a time-consuming chore. Not one you’ll want to do with any regular frequency.

If you live near a large body of water, river, lake or pond, then it will make more sense to strip down and jump in.

Also, having a warm bath will take a lot more time and energy so cold baths will be the new norm.

30 – Cities Will Become Dangerous Death TrapsDense Crowd

Cities will be extremely dangerous, especially in the first few months/years after TEOTWAWKI event. Millions of starving people will create massive violence. People attack each other for scarce resources.

Over time, people will flee the city looking for more resources. Those left behind will survive mainly by taking from others by force.

If you live in a major city, I suggest you bug out as soon as things go south. If you don’t live in a major city, then it’s best to avoid and never be tempted to go into one. It will most likely be a death trap.

And I’m not willing to bet my life on it.

31 – No Colleges or Universities

Higher education will be limited to local survival communities. If a small survival community survives, then it will begin educating its children. However, it won’t be the same sort of education that we have today.

Survival skills and weapon use will be the main education topics. Not philosophy and liberal arts.

32 – Horses Will Become More Popular Again

If you have horses and you can keep them from starving, then they will grow in popularity. Once things settle out, the survivors are going to use horses for travel. Like early frontier days.

33 – Body Hair Will Not Be Groomed

Shaving daily will become a thing of the past. Because fresh, sharp blades will be less readily available. And most won’t want to waste the time and energy to do so.

So men in general, will have more facial hair and women will have unshaven legs and armpits.

34 – Greenback Won’t Be the Recognized Currencydollar bill

Paper money will be worth nothing. The only reason it has value today is because people have confidence in it. Confidence that those paper dollars will be recognized by others to represent value.

TEOTWAWKI will destroy all confidence in paper dollars holding any value.

If you think about it this paper can’t do anything practical.

It can’t dig like a good tactical shovel, it can’t be eaten to give us calories, it can’t be used for self-defense.

The only use paper dollars have after TEOTWAWKI is to help start fires and to be used as emergency toilet paper.

35 – No More Dieting and Weight Control Programs

When food resources are scarce, being overweight will no longer be a problem. Starvation will be the new issue people are confronted with.

36 – National Politics Won’t Matter

After TEOTWAWKI the only politics you’ll have to worry about is local politics.

No matter how small your group of survival coalition is, there will be some form of decision making. There will be leaders and followers.

This is local politics.

37 – Correct Prescription Eye Glasses Will Become Cherished

If like me you wear corrective lenses, then you need to plan carefully before TEOTWAWKI. Blurry vision is huge disadvantage in survival. From shooting guns to spotting intruders.

Blurry vision will get you killed after TEOTWAWKI.

So you need to have eyeglasses and preferably a backup pair. They won’t be making any more. Plus, the odds of bartering for a pair with your exact prescription is basically zero.

They way I see it, you have 2 options:

1) Get LASIK vision correction ASAP

2) Consider getting a pair of sport goggles with your prescription today, just in case. Sport goggles can take a lot more abuse than traditional eyeglasses.

38 – Firearm Carry Will Become the Normruger gunsite scout

Those who survive will be gun carriers. No permits needed. Without any form of law enforcement, we’ll go back to the Wild West era of packing heat everywhere we go.

Plan to gear up for TEOTWAWKI gun fights.

39 – No More Planning Around the Weather

Weather for the day will be a complete surprise. Of course, you’ll know the general seasons. You’ll know it’s not going to snow in July. However, you won’t know what the next 10 days are going to bring as far as storms or droughts.

Why? Because our current system of weather forecasting will no longer function. No more planning your picnics around the weather. But no one will be picnicking anyways…

However, here are some old methods to predict what the weather might have in store.

40 – A Lot Less Wildlife


Wildlife equals protein. Starving humans equals mass local wildlife extinction. Birds, squirrels, deer, and rabbits will all be wiped out locally. Probably snakes too. Some people will eat rodents. However, rats carry disease and multiply like crazy. So I expect they will be around in significant numbers.

The mornings will be eerily quiet with no birds chirping.

41 – The Concept of Weekend Will Vanish

Thank God, it’s Friday. Oh God, it’s Monday. Sound familiar?

This entire concept of “weekend” will vanish. When surviving is your only priority, you don’t really get any days off. While you won’t be going in to your job M-F, you also won’t be relaxing Saturday and Sunday.

42 – Solar Devices and Panels Will Be Worth a Lot More

Being able to harness some power from the sun will be a TEOTWAWKI luxury. It will be highly desirable to be able to power a few select devices, even if it’s not a lot of power or for very long.

If you do have enough solar power to run a small refrigerator or heater then you’re going to be the talk of the town.

Heck, even solar lanterns, solar power bank and USB rechargeable batteries will set you apart from the average Joe.

But again, “the rub”, you’ll have to defend this device from your envious neighbors.

43 – Small Survival Villages Will Form

A few survival coalitions will make it past the initial hell of TEOTWAWKI. These pockets of survivalist will be close-knit groups. They will have the tools, resources, and trust to work together to survive. They may even carve out a respectable existence given a few years of hard work.

In most respects, this survival life will be harder than today, but in a few ways it might be better.

44 – No More Morning Cup of Coffee

Like restaurants, the coffee shops will no longer function. So you won’t be able to buy a cup of Joe. If you stockpiled some ahead of time, maybe you have a few grounds lying around. But I highly doubt you’ll stockpile enough for the long haul.

Coffee beans will vanish and become a rare luxury not often found and expensive if you do.

45 – Cannibalism Will Become Much More Prevalent

While it’s horrible to consider, you know some people will go there. We know it’s happened in small emergencies in our past history (Donner Party). So why would it be any different after TEOTWAWKI takes place?

It’s your choice whether you will go that far, but I assure you, many will.

46 – Entitled Attitude Will Be Eradicated

I’m sure you know someone who has an entitled attitude. Heck, just look at most teenager nowadays.

Those who have this attitude after TEOTWAWKI will not make it. People will quickly realize they are entitled to NOTHING. Many will decide that this new survival based life is not worth living. They will voluntary leave this world behind (i.e. commit suicide).

47 – Much Lower Average Age of Population

Due to the constant threat of starvation, lack of modern medical supplies, and very poor sanitation practices our population’s average life expectancy will plummet. This number drop will be due to much higher child mortality rates.

Here are 10 ways you will most likely die after TEOTWAWKI.

48 – Body Piercings and Tattoos Will Be Less Popular

Not only will these forms of expression become a distraction from survival, but people who pierce or tattoo themselves will be asking for an infection.

Today if you get an infection you take some antibiotics and you’re good to go. After TEOTWAWKI, a simple infection will often kill without antibiotics to treat it.

So the risk/reward equation will suck.

49 – Rodent Populations Will Balloon Out of Control


With poor sanitation practices and lack of poison control substances, rats will thrive. Rodents in general, have a very short breeding cycle.

These cycles are extremely difficult to stop once it starts. So without any modern control substances, rodents will dominate.

They might become some people’s regular source of protein, though. However, rats carry diseases so it’s a major tradeoff to be avoided if at all possible.

50 – People Will Have Worse Teeth

Without any formal dentistry or toothpaste, oral hygiene will suffer. Over time, people’s teeth will rot.  Without regular oral hygiene tooth decay sets in.

Braces will no longer be available to correct crooked teeth. Today, most children get braces and most people have a nice smile. In the future, buck and crooked teeth will come back into our society in regular doses.

So it’s a good idea to have a Survival Dental Plan for TEOTWAWKI.

51 – No More Elaborate Funerals

If TEOTWAWKI plays out as I fear with mass starvation, there will be thousands (maybe millions) of people who won’t get buried at all. They will die in rooms, houses and on the street without anyone caring to remove them.

They will rot, decay, stink and be left for the vultures.

For those who lose a family member, they might take the time and energy to perform a simple funeral. It will be a basic hole dug in the backyard. With a basic cross or very basic tombstone.

No caskets, no embalming, no hearse.

So you should have a plan to deal with this for your family.

52 – Prostitution Will Become Rampant

Like it or not, sex is an ancient bartering tool. It’s one that has been around since the very beginnings of civilization. As I heard it once said

“it might just be one of the oldest professions ever.”

Rape will also be rampant. Why pay (i.e. barter) when you can just take? But I think it’s likely for prostitution rings to develop at some point after TEOTWAWKI.

I’m not condoning it, but it will be a way for some to survive.

53 – No More Financial Debts (Student Loans / Mortgages / Taxes)

I’ve got good news for you. Your mortgage, student loans, and credit card debts will all be forgotten after TEOTWAWKI.

No one will be knocking on your door threatening you if you don’t pay them back. Especially not when everyone will be busy just trying to survive.

Traditional finances will be meaningless.

54 – Workout Gyms Will No Longer ExistDumbbell Weight

You’ll be getting a workout in everday carrying WaterBricks full of water from your water supply to your living quarters.

Everyone will be working out, but not to keep their figure slim or their butt tight. They’ll be working to stay alive.

Plus, you’ll want to try and conserve as much energy as possible, not burn it off on purpose.

There will be enough energy loss trying to survive. Beyond that, you’ll want to rest up and try to avoid wasting your precious calories.

55 – Children’s Sleepovers Won’t Happen

Your kids won’t go over to their friends’ houses for sleepovers.

Why? Because after TEOTWAWKI, trust will no longer extend past your immediate family. Trust may still reach to your extended family, but that’s about it.

If food, water, and heat are scarce resources, the last thing you’ll want is to waste them on someone else’s children.

Plus, you won’t trust anyone else with your child either…even for one night.

56 – No More Night Clubs or Barsbar

Do you enjoy a stop off at your local pub after work, like I do?

You better drink up today because that comforting habit will end after TEOTWAWKI.

Alcohol has better uses in survival than for getting us drunk. Plus, if you’re drunk you’re just asking to get taken advantage of in an uncivilized world.

Too many people already get taken advantage of today in our “civilized” modern world.

57 – Handheld Weapons Will Become More Popular

Guns, ammo, and suppressors will be important, but you also won’t want to waste your bullets unnecessarily. You’ll want to carry some other form of self-defense weapon as well.

Brass knuckles, monkey fists, and survival knives will be popular choices to carry along with a gun.

Here’s a guide to numerous handheld weapons.

58 – Foraging Will Be Popular Until Everything Has Been Scavengedforaging

Foraging will become popular initially when there is still something to forage.

In densely populated areas things like wild mushrooms, cattails, and wild onions will become scarce quickly. In rural areas, foraging will be a regular activity for survivalists.

Remember tho, foraging is not as easy as it sounds. You need to fully understand what you are doing to be successful at it.

59 – Less Trust of Strangers

You will no longer feel safe in any sized crowd or even passing a lone stranger on the street. You will quickly learn that blind trust can get you killed.

There will be no more holding doors for strangers or friendly greetings. It’s too bad, but strangers will equal danger after TEOTWAWKI.

60 – Less Sleep In Generaltired

The good news is that you will no longer be waking up to an alarm clock. Why? Because it won’t work.

The bad news is you won’t be getting much sleep at all.

Times will be dangerous, especially at night, and you’ll want to sleep lightly. You will be more on edge and should plan on sleeping in shifts to keep watch.

61 – No More Pet Food

We talked earlier about a mass reduction in pet ownership. Well, pet food manufacturers will shut down, too. On top of that, pet food will be eaten by your fellow human beings.

It’s nutritious and calorie dense, and if you’re starving it will taste amazing.

62 – Canned Food “Best Buy” Dates Won’t Matter

Is your canned food expired or past its “Best If Used Buy” date? Who cares!? That can contains a wealth of valuable calories. Open it up, smell it, and if it’s not rancid, eat up.

63 – Hand Crank Devices Will Be Desirablehand crank radio

There are a few devices that you can purchase with hand cranks instead of electrical cords. Two popular ones are radios and lanterns. They are great because the hand cranks are mini electrical generators.

They don’t produce a lot of energy, but they will give you a listen only radio and a light source without grid power.

These devices will be gems when TEOTWAWKI comes.

64 – Neosporin Will Become Desirable

Antibiotic ointments will become a popular barter item.

If you scratch your knuckle, would you rather apply some Neosporin or take your chances without it? Remember, the downside to a bad infection is death.

If you’ve stocked some Neosporin, others may trade a lot for it.

65 – No More Joint Replacements or Major Surgeries

If your hip is bad, or your knee gets crushed, then you’ll have to live with the injury for the rest of your days.

There won’t be hip surgeries or knee implants to speak of.

Instead, there will be lots of people hobbling around after TEOTWAWKI, especially as the surviving population ages.

Here are some tips to help prepare your elders for TEOTWAWKI.

66 – Vegans Will Convert

Being a vegan is a luxury that modern life allows.

But, after TEOTWAWKI I doubt many will pass up cooked squirrel when they haven’t had a thing to eat for days or even weeks.

And if they do pass it up, then they risk death by starvation for their vegan principles.

It will be much harder to avoid starvation if you are picky about your food choices.

67 – Makeup / Fragrance / Hair Care Products – All Rare

Makeup, perfume, and hair gel will be rare, and most people won’t have the energy or gumption to care about applying them.

Who’s going to want to get dressed up when they haven’t had a shower in a week, and their toilets won’t flush?

Some may use fragrance initially to mask their stench but eventually the stuff will run out, and people will get accustomed to the smell.

68 – No More Semi-Truck Distribution NetworksCBRadio

There will not be any semi-tracker trailers in operation. The days of mass transit logistics moving goods and food supplies will be over.

However, once things settle down, there may be some traveling merchants pulling basic carts and survival trailers from town to town trying to make a simple living exchanging goods.

69 – Star Gazing & Storytelling Will Be Popular

One form of ancient entertainment that will come back is star gazing. The stars will be incredible after TEOTWAWKI.

The absence of light pollution will bring the brilliant night sky back for your enjoyment.

If you’ve ever seen stars with no light pollution, you know what I’m talking about; it’s spectacular.

There will also be more storytelling as a form of entertainment. Why? Because stories don’t require gadgets or money. And youngsters will want to hear Dad tell stories about the “Old Days.”

70 – Home Depreciation Will Be More Noticeable

Homeowners will no longer maintain their property. Homes will begin deteriorating the day after TEOTWAWKI and after just a few years will be significantly run down, especially the abandoned ones.

However, you can pilfer materials from these abandoned homes to keep your house in decent shape, not that you’ll care much about how it looks. But keeping your home intact is important to protect you from outside elements.

71 – No More Weed Controlweeds

Similar to no more mowed lawns, weeds will also grow out of control.

Everywhere you look…more weeds. In the cracks of roads, sidewalks and driveways, and in every abandoned garden and unkempt patio.

If you live near kudzu, you’ll find that it will quickly blanket nearly everything. Kudzu grows extremely fast and when left to its own devices will cover everything in its path.

In a decade or so there won’t be much that isn’t covered by the stuff in the deep South.

72 – Stout Shoes / Boots Will Be Worth More

Stout boots and good shoes will be highly desired. Poor shoes or boots will cause foot problems. Foot problems can lead to all manner of survival disadvantages.

We’ve all seen movies where the protagonist stops to check the dead guys boots, searching for an upgrade over his current pair.

73 – Board Games, Cards, and Puzzles Will Be Popularboard game

Kids need some form of entertainment, even after TEOTWAWKI, and board games, playing cards, and puzzles will fit the bill nicely.

No, they’re not as glamorous as video games or cell phones, but they are a lot of fun when options are limited.

My family still enjoys card games at family gatherings, and once we break them out and get going, it’s always a great time. Check out these survival playing cards that not only work for all card games but also include some great information such as “would you survive if…” questions.

74 –  Skin Cancer Cases Will Increase

Sunscreen will no longer be readily available, and the little that remains after TEOTWAWKI will get used in just a year or two.

People should cover themselves up, wear long sleeves and try to limit prolonged sun exposure.

Most won’t heed this advice. Who cares about a little sun when you’ve got larger immediate concerns? But slowly at first, then year after year, this attitude will take its toll and skin cancer will rise. After a decade or 2 it could become an epidemic, though we may no longer have a doctor’s diagnosis for it.

75 – Travel Will Be Rare And Without GPS

Your traveling days will be over. Why? Because travel will be much more difficult and extremely dangerous. And, if you’re forced to leave you won’t have GPS navigation to help guide you.

If you’re lucky, you’ll have a compass and a map. If not, then it’s navigation via the sun and stars.

Yes, satellites left in orbit will still be transmitting GPS signals. But without electricity, there won’t be any devices left to collect the data.

76 – Air Pollution Will Vansishair pollution

Air pollution will no longer be an issue. The overwhelming number of vehicles exhausting fumes daily into our atmosphere will dwindle, along with manufacturing and power plant generators.

The vast majoairty of the electricty being generated after TEOTWAWKI will be from alternative sources like solar power generators and windmills meaning that the infamous brown clouds that hover over our major cities will quickly disperse without a continuous stream of fumes to feed their existence.

77 – No One Will Give A Damn about Global Climate Change

Concerns over climate change will vanish as quickly as the piles of human excrement accumulate.

However, if our earth does get warmer, milder winters would be beneficial for survival after TEOTWAWKI. Just saying…

78 – Backyard Pools Will Not Be Used For Fun

One often overlooked means of water storage is a backyard pool.

An entire pool full of life-giving water located just outside your back door is a nice survival luxury, indeed. But have you thought about how best to manage this survival asset? Your neighbors will want you to share, and that may not be your intention.

How many strangers should you let drink from your pool? Are you willing to shoot trespassers?

A backyard pool might be one of those survival blessings that turns into a survival nightmare.

As the old saying goes,

“It’s better to have a neighbor with a pool.”

79 – Light Pollution Will Be A Thing Of The Pastlight pollution

When TEOTWAWKI comes, nighttime will bring pitch black darkness.  No more city lights, no more street lights, no more house lights…just as dark as dark can be.

The only exception will be the occasional full moon.

80 – Roving Mobs / Robbers / Muggers Will Be Prevalent and Deadly

Roving gangs and bandits will coalesce and thrive by taking resources from others. They will roam from city to city and from town to town raping and pillaging to meet needs and desires.

You will be confronted with two choices to deal with them. You can either hide from them or confront them. They will be ruthless and well-armed, so unless your survival coalition is up for a deadly skirmish, it may be more prudent to avoid them.

You should plan for this inevitability (encountering a large band of survivors with ill-intent) ahead of time. Create a plan to hide your resources well and develop an escape route.

Fortifying your home is a good place to start.

81 – Suicide Rates Will Increase

Many will decide that a TEOTWAWKI world is not one worth living in. They will choose not to endure the hardships and suffering and will elect to take the easy way out.

82 – People Will Stop Complaining About 1st World Problems

Most 1st world problems and complaints will subside. Comments such as “Why can’t I get my computer in the color pink?” or “Are we there yet?” or “But I’m hungry now!” or “My digital photos are so disorganized…” will vanish.

Those are examples of silly developed world problems and complaints. They will sound even more ridiculous than they already do today.

83 – Families Will Live Closer Together

For most, their families will be the only other humans they can trust. So naturally families will stick together more. Kids will no longer leave for college and relocate for a new job on the other side of the country.

After TEOTWAWKI, those born in small town USA will grow up, live, and die in the same small town.

84 – No More Showers – Occasional Baths at Bestshower head

Showers require water pressure. Water pressure won’t be available at large. It is possible to rig up a gravity fed shower, but most will not find the effort worth it.

Instead, most people will elect just to bathe in rivers, lakes and ponds – whichever large source of water happens to be closest.

After TEOTWAWKI most won’t have a warm shower, here’s how you can.

85 – Drug and Alcohol Abuse Will Be Reduced

Upon initial inspection, most believe drug abuse will increase because people will want to escape their new nightmarish reality.

That might be true, but over time recreational drugs will become as rare as life-saving drugs.

Alcohol will be kept for sanitizing supplies, cleaning wounds, etc. So while drug and alcohol abuse will not be eliminated, it will no longer be mainstream.

86 – New Moms Will Breastfeed

Without access to infant formula, women will have no choice other than to breastfeed.

If they want to feed their newborns, then they will need to breastfeed them. I can’t imagine being able to score consistent amounts of baby formula after TEOTWAWKI.

And, breastfeeding allows a mom to feed her child without worry of cleaning and sterilizing bottles, mixing the proper amount of formula, or the luxury of a heated bottle.

87 – No More Internet – No More Emailemail inbox

The internet will no longer exist and even if it did there will be no grid power to run a computer to take advantage of it.

No more worrying about your messy email inbox.

88 – Old Magazines Will Be Worth More

Playboy magazines will make a comeback. Not that any new issues will be released, but old issues will be popular. These stacks of past issues that have been stashed away for years will finally fetch a healthy bartering price.

89 – Digital Photos Will Be Lost

Digital photos stored on computer hard drives or “The Cloud” will be hard (if not impossible) to access.

However, physical photos will become beloved and cherished treasures for families. They won’t have any barter value, but they will have immense personal value.

90 – No More National Elections – No More Democrats or Republicans – Everyone Will Be Of The Party Survivalist

National elections will be a thing of the past. Without nationwide communication, local leadership groups will dominate.

It’s possible some of the local leaders will be chosen through elections, but nationwide democracy won’t rise from the ashes.

It’s much more likely that these local leadership groups will resemble oligarchic forms of decision making.

91 – Bathing Suits and Suit & Ties Will Seem Silly

Who’s going to wear a bikini after TEOTWAWKI? The answer is No One.

The skimpy bathing suit is 100% style and 0% function. Suit jackets will become useful for keeping you warm, but a tie is nearly useless as originally intended.

Ties are useful for other survival needs, but looking professional is not one of them. Looking professional will no longer matter.

92 – No More Civil Courts and Lawyerslawyer sign

Courts, judges, and lawyers will no longer be around. Disputes will now be handled by individuals or small groups. Often, he who has the most firepower and will to use it will typically win a dispute.

93 – Credit Scores Will Be Meaningless

Do you have a good or bad credit score? Who cares about that after TEOTWAWKI?

Without trust and computer-based algorithms, credit scores will be meaningless. However, it’s possible that ancient forms of credit will make a comeback.

If you want to borrow something, then just give up something of higher value as collateral.

If you don’t bring the borrowed item back, then you forfeit the collateral. This is the oldest form of credit. Today we call it a pawn shop.

94 – More Fishing – Over Fishing

Fishing will become very popular for thousands of starving people until the lakes and streams get fished out.

Fish will be similar to other wildlife – in cities, the waterways will be empty of all life, in rural areas fishing will become a daily chore.

Stock up on some Yo Yo Reels now while you still can.

95 – Reuse and Keep Items – More Rat Packing

You won’t be so quick to throw anything away (except for human waste and true garbage).

Old appliances, old utensils, and neat survival gadgets will be kept around just in case. A lot of old junk can be repurposed after TEOTWAWKI.

96 – No More Car Washing or Car Washeswashing car

Nobody will be interested in washing a non-functioning vehicle. Plus, car washing is a major waste of water and time.

Both driveway hand washing and automated car washes will become obsolete overnight.

97 – No More Income Inequality In The Traditional Sense

The rich will become poor, and the poor will become rich. Well, sort of.

The new “rich” will be those of us who have key survival skills, knowledge, firepower and a coalition we can trust.

The “poor” will be people who don’t have any survival skills, people who today hire other people to care for their everyday life functions. These current rich folks will be in for a rude awakening when TEOTWAWKI occurs.

98 – More DIY / Fix It Yourself

If you’re a part of a strong survival coalition, then the group will as a whole be very self-reliant but the individuals may not have to be. Members can focus on specific skills they know best.

However, those who are not a part of a solid survival coalition will be forced to become 100% DIY.

No more calling a professional to service or maintain your stuff. You get to fix things that become broken, with the parts you have on hand or that you can scrounge/barter for.

99 – No More Daycare

If you have little ones, then your family will have to watch them all day, every day.

There will no longer be daycare institutions that watch groups of children so that you can get stuff done.

You’ll have to watch the children AND get stuff done. It’s not going to be easy.

100 – Sugary Treats Will Be Rare

Sugary sweets (i.e. candy bars) will become a rare treat.

They will no longer be mass produced and will get harder and harder to find as time goes on.

The well-known brands such as Snickers, Jolly Ranchers, and M&M’s will become as extinct as the saber tooth tiger.

101 – Bigger, Larger, Longer Wildfireswildfire

Firefighting will no longer be a full-time job. People will not go into the harsh wilderness to attempt to snuff out a roaring wildfire.

Wildfires will burn until their fuel source runs out or the weather changes to rain/snow.  As a result, many more acres will be burned by these uncontrolled TEOTWAWKI wildfires.

102 – Shopping Malls and “Going Shopping” Won’t Exist

The idea of “going shopping” and “shopping malls” will vanish. Malls will likely become abandoned ghost towns cleaned out by opportunistic scavengers.

103 – No More Welfare Handouts

Without a national government, we will no longer have forced redistribution policies.

Those who currently rely on handouts will be thrown to the wolves once TEOTWAWKI happens. National welfare handout programs will be a thing of the past.

104 – National Parks Boundaries Won’t Matter

National parks will still be around in the sense that their stunning beauty won’t up and disappear. However, there won’t be anyone left to maintain them or control activities in them.

Nor will there be tourist visitors. Instead, there will be people living there and people passing through. Park authorities will have long ago abandoned their post to protect their own families.

105 – Amusement Parks Will Be Abandonedamusement park ride

No more rides down “Splash Mountain” or the “Double Dragon”. Amusement parks take an enormous amount of labor and significant funds to operate.

They will be one of the very first places abandoned after TEOTWAWKI.

Amusement parks will become sad, deteriorating reminders of a life that once was…


As you can tell when TEOTWAWKI happens things will be drastically different for a very long time. The world will no longer function with civility and we will be thrown backward in time.

Will TEOTWAWKI actually happen? Who knows.

Could it happen? Yes.

Americans need to focus on individual survival not the restoration of the republic


What team is Obama playing for?

Former President Obama was best the facilitator of comnunism in our country. He was groomed for the job for over a generation. Today, Joseph McCarthy’s greatest fear of a communist takeover of the United States is on the verge of happening. Already, many of our congressmen are severely compromised.


There was a time when I did not want to believe Steve Quayle when he said on my show that America is going to fall. Steve went on to say that individuals could be saved through the grace of God, but America will never be the same. I offer this as a backdrop for what is going to follow.

Three weeks ago at the height of the Vegas massacre, I received an email that was very telling about the consciouness for many of the American people.

Dear Dave,

I enjoy your how and MOST of your articles, but certainly not all. You constantly state that the people are going to be victims of the New World Order and that our government is part of it. This is just not true. Congress has to live in this country too so they would not all this to happen. Please focus on the new items that are real, like the tragedy in Las Vegas. You do a good job covering events, but you really suck with your message that your government is coming to get you. There are no FEMA camps. Please stop it!

This attitude is very dangerous to health and welfare of every American. This attitude prevents us recognizing the dangers that we all face together as a result of being Americans,  I would, once again, offer the following as proof that this well-intentioned person is deceived and consequently under estimates the threats to their standard of living and even their own lives.

Senators Kamala Harris and Elizabeth Warren are Trojan Horses

Elizabeth Warren, the Trojan Horse of the Middle Class. She and Senator Kamala Harris are Muslim Brotherhood sympathizers. I am not talking Muslims or the religion of Islam, I am referring to the most senior terrorist group in the world, the Muslim Brotherhood. These 2 belong to their front organizations for the Muslim Brotherhood.

As I have stated before, reform will not likely happen at the ballot box because over 80 Democrats in Congress fit this MO. Trevor Loudon, documents, through his new documentary entitled The Enemies Within) how the Communist Party of the USA itself has adopted a stealth plan to achieve revolutionary goals by decisions made in the 1970s to infiltrate and manipulate the Democratic Party. Loudon’s newest work documents how Lewis is a member of several front organizations with strong ties to the Community Party.

I am not the only researcher who has made these connections. From WND

“In an insightful essay on the Democratic Socialists of America, Loudon emphasizes the impact on U.S. radicals of the late Italian Communist Party theoretician Antonio Gramsci, whose writings from prison declared that the “working class revolution” is a dead end, arguing instead that communism can best be achieved “by infiltrating civil society – political parties, churches, labor unions, universities, the media, community groups, etc., to turn them into revolutionary vehicles.”

Similarly, Loudon documents how the Communist Party of the USA itself has adopted a stealth plan to achieve revolutionary goals by decisions made in the 1970s to infiltrate and manipulate the Democratic Party. The plan is to form alliances with the radical elements in organized labor in conjunction with radicals in the African-American community and the feminist movement to establish a progressive coalition on the left that could dominate the national political agenda for decades to come.

His essay on the Institute for Policy Studies provides extensive evidence that the IPS, operating today with the distinction of being oldest – founded in 1963 – and most influential of the far left “think tanks” in Washington, D.C., “works closely with several U.S. Marxist groups, but is particularly close to the Democratic Socialists of America.”

The congressional profiles of current members of Congress provides extensive evidence of radical leftist ties in the backgrounds of top Democratic Party legislators, including Democratic Party Sens. Barbara Boxer, Dick Durbin, Tom Harkin, Barbara Mikulski, Elizabeth Warren, Ed Markey, Debbie Stabenow, Al Franken, Sherrod Brown, Ron Wyden, Jeff Merkley, Patty Murray and Tammy Baldwin…”


As I looked into the work of Cynthia McKinney and Trevor Louden I found that “The Communist and Muslim Brotherhood infiltration plan is to form alliances with the radical elements in organized labor in conjunction with radicals in the African-American community and the feminist movement to establish a progressive coalition on the left that could dominate the national political agenda for decades to come.”  Prominent Democratic Congressman, John Lewis,is a member of the Progressive Caucus which is a front group for the Communist Party. Lewis is not alone, but his actions and allegiances speak to his lack of commitment to the Republic and most importantly, the Constitution of The United States. With these associations and his continual efforts in dividing the country, this Congressman should resign. Our country has reached its saturation point with treason from its public officials. Lewis has lost all credibility. Former Congressman, Alan West, has identified 80 of these Congressman as belonging to front groups for either the Communist party or the Muslim Brotherhood, or both.


Many will conclude that these facts will culminate in the removal of Trump as President. However, that view is pollyanish and the abovementioned emailer is soon to get a painful lesson in history. Those that are sent to FEMA camps are lucky.  Senator Joseph McCarthy is correct, the infiltration of America began in earnest in the 1950’s. This is why I have no trouble believing that November 4th will be the date that Antifa and its allies launches a communist coup against Trump and the Constitution. I have no idea if it will happen, however, I would not be suprised.

This piece is what we call a foundational set up piece.  In upoming articles, I am going to point where past actions and legislation tells us where this all headed and none of it is good.

A Crash Course in Preparedness – Week 1 – The Survival Basics

We’re ushering in National Preparedness Month with the first in a series of four preparedness guides. This crash course into preparedness will help you plan a strategy, position critical assets and greatly increase your chance of surviving many of the most common emergencies. While the subject of preparedness is an extensive one, we are going to break the basics down as much as we can so that you can stay focused and on track.

Before we start, I want to share my philosophy with you. A disaster of any kind rarely stops with the initial event. The aftermath can spiral, having the capacity to cripple our normal ways of life for a much longer time than we intended. This can last days, into weeks and even longer (depending on the circumstance). Because of this, it’s important to have a well-rounded approach to your preparedness efforts. I wholeheartedly believe in a layering concept when it comes to preparedness. You start at the beginning and slowly add more “layers” on preparedness until your family is fully insulated from the disaster itself. By accumulating items slowly and mindfully, you will stay organized and know that all of your bases are covered. I’ve broken the layers down into three groups.

  • The first layer is the preparedness endeavors that prepare you for emergencies that have shorter-term effects. This is what we’ll cover today and basically, covers your 3-day emergency into two weeks. Having supplies in place to last up to two weeks will carry you through some of the most expected types of disasters.
  • The second layer of preparedness encompasses the disasters that turn out to be much longer-lasting: job loss, extreme weather events, economic collapse, long-term power outages, and pandemics, to name a few. This requires more planning on your part but is a crucial investment in order to be prepared for these longer lasting disasters.
  • The third layer of preparedness is acquiring supplies for those far from equilibrium events that have long standing consequences. In this type of disaster, you must prepare for the long haul and a complete change of lifestyle. These are events that encompass the end-of-the-world-as-we-know-it and we have to learn a new way of life including new skill sets that reflect an off-the-grid lifestyle.

While there are a lot of subjects in between the highlighted layers, we must keep this prepper truth in mind: How we choose to be prepared for a disaster event is solely our responsibility, and no one else’s.

In this course, the responsibility lies with you. I will provide you links to important articles, suggestions and even checklists to further your research but it is up to you to apply the information to your lifestyle. Let’s get started!

How prepared do you want to be?

Disasters of all types are an undeniable part of life, and the only thing you can change is the way you react to them. I have found that the best way to go about this is to understand the disaster that you’re preparing for. Having supplies in place to weather the storm is a great start, but far from the desired end result. To be prepared, and I mean fully prepared, requires planning, anticipating the worst-case scenario, and training for skill sets you will need while living through the event. You can’t just waltz into your local grocery store, grab some food, batteries, and water and then be done with it. You need to prioritize, plan, and prepare.

Prioritize your needs

Ultimately, the easiest way to begin preparing is to decide what types of disasters you are planning for (weather-related, natural disasters, mass evacuation, economic or personal disasters), and prioritize what your emergency plans will be based on those emergencies. The best way to begin assessing what your needs are is by reading and researching the disaster you are planning to survive.

Ready Nutrition has an immense amount of articles pertaining to specific disasters, so do a search and start your research. Many people start by preparing for the most likely emergency to occur in your area.

Map provided by Redcross.org and Noaa.gov

Do not limit your emergency planning to natural or economic disasters. Go a step further and plan for personal disasters that also tend to occur without warning (unemployment, divorce, death in the family).


Researching and creating an emergency plan is the best way to stay organized and on point with your prepping.

Having a plan in place to determine what steps need to be taken by you and your family members when an emergency arises will ensure that all preparedness needs are covered. Now that your plan is beginning to come to life, it’s important to check and prepare the home. To start, every home should begin their preparedness endeavors with this checklist.

Complete this prepared home checklist

  • Post emergency telephone numbers by phones (fire, police, ambulance, etc.).
  • Teach children how and when to call 911 or your local Emergency Medical Services number for emergency help.
  • Determine the best escape routes from your home if you plan on evacuating. Do you plan on bugging in or bugging out? If you are having problems deciding whether to shelter in place or evacuate, answer these two questions and you will know what you need to do.
  • Find the safe spots in your home for each type of disaster.
  • Show each family member how and when to turn off the water, gas, and electricity at the main switches.
  • Check if you have adequate insurance coverage.
  • Teach each family member how to use the fire extinguisher, and show them where it’s kept.
  • Install smoke detectors on each level of your home, especially near bedrooms.
  • Ensure that your family’s important documents are backed up and in a safe location.
  • Before you begin investing into your preparedness supplies, take steps to get out of debt. Debt only enslaves you further, and simplifying your lifestyle can help break those shackles. Learn about these 6 ways to simplify your lifestyle.
  • Create an emergency fund to begin funding your preparedness endeavors.
  • Plan for the worst case scenario and have emergency I.D. cards made for each family member (including your pets) with current information provided.

Planning is the key to survival and the best way to start is with a “list of lists”

This list will become your Master List of preparedness needs, so keep it in an easy to access location. Your list will also help to navigate you through your preparedness plan. Ask yourself these pertinent questions and realistically answer them. After you determine what disaster you are planning for, sit down and begin to map it out. The way I started was by writing down all the main categories I needed to plan for. Here’s an example.

Short-Term List of Needs for Sheltering in Place for Two-Weeks After a Hurricane

  • Water
  • Food
  • Clothing
  • Shelter
  • Communication
  • Tools
  • Fuel
  • Skillsets
  • Resources

When planning for a disaster follow these beginner protocols:

  • Choose an evacuation location and let family members know where your destination is, the contact information, a secondary destination, etc.).
  • Decide on the duration of the disaster you are planning for (3-day, 2 weeks, extended or longer-term disasters).
  • Create a financial plan on how much money you can contribute to your preparedness budget. Keep in mind that prepping can be expensive initially, so it’s best to start investing in your basic needs first: food, water, shelter, clothing, safety, and communication. You can add additional prepping items once the basics are covered.
  • Try and find items that are light weight, functional and versatile so that if you have to carry them for long periods it will not be a strain.
  • Ensure that you have contingency plans put in place in case your first plan does not work out.
  • Plan and prep for the environment you are living in.
  • While we all make mistakes, the ones made during a disaster can be very costly. This is why it is essential to plan out a worst-case scenario and know which mistakes are the most common.
  • Essentially, you want your beginning preparedness list to look like this short-term emergency checklist.


You need to understand the disaster you are planning for, how to be mentally and spiritually prepared for it and, ultimately, what supplies and skills you need to thrive.

Many of the items that often disappear as a result of a disaster are items that protect your basic needs. While a popular prepper adage is to prepare with the 3 B’s: beans, bullets, and band-aids, there are more concepts to consider. Therefore, it is best to begin with these fundamental disaster items to meet your basic needs: food, water, clothing and shelter and then add more preparedness layers onto this initial foundation. However, many decide to expand their disaster supplies to encompass a longer duration so that if a delayed emergency response occurs, it has little effect on them. This is why preppers believe in having “back-ups for their back-ups.”

As well, do not forget about preparing items for your pets! They are depending on you to make sure they have everything they need to.


Image result for ready nutrition and waterFirst and foremost, you need a dependable water source following a disaster. Your initial line of defense would be the two week supply of bottled water that is recommended, but because this need is your top priority, it is highly recommended that you get a water filtration system like the Katadyn water filter or a Berkey Filtration System. That said, many believe the suggested amount of water by disaster organizations is grossly underestimated.

If we go by the suggestion from emergency organizations and have 1 gallon per person per day, a family of 5 will need 35 gallons of water per week.

Victims of previous disasters say the suggested water amount stated by disaster organizations is not nearly enough to get through a disaster. Conway Yee’s family went through the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy and were without power or their well water supply for a week. To keep hydrated and clean, “we went through 20 gallons a day” for drinking and washing, he says. That’s 120 gallons of water for the week after the hurricane. With that in mind, you want to consider these alternate solutions to boost your short-term water supply.

With water being one of your most important preps, play it safe and double the amount of water needed. The extra water can be used for other purposes like sanitation, cleaning, etc. As well, because many water sources are questionable following a disaster, water can quickly become scarce, so it is important to remember there are hidden water sources found in the home to fall back to. As well, it is also advisable to have alternate ways to treat your water.

As a precaution, keep a bottle of unscented liquid chlorine bleach with your water supply for cleaning and sanitizing and for disinfecting water.


Image result for ready nutrition and food supplyOnce you have your water supply in place, it’s time to begin stockpiling some food for emergencies. The overall goal of having an emergency food pantry is to have a wide array of nutritious foods stored away in order to carry us through an emergency. Start out with a supply of non-perishable food that doesn’t require a lot of cooking time (if any).

Ensure that you have foods suitable towards survival. Foods that have the sustaining energy sources to burn slowly. Finding foods that are high in complex carbs and dietary fiber are far more efficient from a dietary standpoint and will keep you feeling “fuller” longer. This could go a long way if you are planning on rationing your food in an extended emergency. Also, stay away from overly salty or sweet foods. This will only increase your need for water and since your food stores are a precious commodity, you will want to try and avoid these types of foods.

Using a food storage calculator will help you to determine how much food is necessary. It is important to factor in your caloric intake, especially during an emergency. Your activity level could drastically increase in a disaster due to aftermath cleanup and other activities. These are some considerations to keep in mind before purchasing the food items:

  • It’s best to find items that have expiration dates that are 1-2 years away from expiring, unless that item is used frequently in the home, and can be rotated frequently.
  • Typically, the best sales are advertised in the newspaper flyers.  There are stores that have 10 items for $10, or 2-for-1 offers.  You don’t have to break the bank to get stocked up.  Just get a little each time you visit the store.  In season vegetables are typically cheaper.  Larger volume packages are often a better price
  • Shop with the number of people in the household in mind. Also consider their preferences, food sensitivities, and appetites.
  • Get a wide variety of food to help reduce food fatigue.
  • Don’t rely on junk food. It’s especially important to keep your strength up and remain healthy during an emergency. Purchase supplies that are loaded with nutrients.
  • Store food in a dark, cool area of the home and protect your food investment by reducing oxidation of foods, bug infestations, and exposure to increase temperature and moisture levels.
  • Be aware of any special health considerations for family members.  Make sure you have supplies for family members with allergies and intolerances, as well as issues like hypertension or diabetes.
  • Store what you eat, and eat what you store.  By following this adage, you will not end up throwing away expired food, and you won’t serve up something completely unpalatable during a crisis situation.

Here are some suggested food items to have stored:

  1. Peanut butter
  2. Whole wheat crackers (consider vacuum packing to prolong freshness)
  3. Nuts and trail mix
  4. Cereal
  5. Oats
  6. Pasta
  7. Plant-based cooking oil
  8. Power bars and granola bars
  9. Dried fruit
  10. Just add water meals (Hamburger helper, pasta meals, etc.)
  11. Canned meat such as tuna, salmon, chicken, and turkey
  12. Canned vegetables such as beans, carrots, and peas
  13. Canned soups and chili
  14. Sports drinks
  15. Sugar, salt, and pepper
  16. Coffee, tea, hot cocoa
  17. Powdered milk
  18. Powdered drink mixes
  19. Seeds for sprouting
  20. Multivitamins

Here are 25 must-have foods to put in your pantry.

Canning meals is also an option you should consider. This gives you more control of your dietary requirements, gives you more meal options, helps provide “normal” food during difficult times. One thing I hear a lot from disaster victims is how they wish things would go back to normal. Having some of the family’s favorite foods canned and stored away would do wonders for morale.

As well, I highly recommend storing a variety of heirloom seeds. These can be to grow sprouts for emergency nutrition and for gardens for long-term food sources. You could also plant edible flowers. Not only will they be lovely to look at, but they will provide sustenance when you need it the most. Alternatively, if you can locate food packing plants or warehouses in your city, that may be a good place to allocate additional food reserves if yours runs out. This article can provide information on foraging for weeds.

Find the best deals so you don’t blow your budget

Mentioned earlier is the importance of having a budget for prepping. It’s easy to go crazy wanting preps to get your home ready. But you can do this without blowing your budget. The large volume supermarkets typically have better deals than the smaller stores. Map your shopping route based on local ads from the large supermarkets to save on gas money as well as on shopping time. Even dollar stores carry canned goods and food products for short term/long term food supplies. Look for the best sales and buy as much of the item as your budget will allow. For a more in depth first time shopping list for your prepper, consider adding these items, as well.

You can also pack your own MREs to save money and to ensure your family has foods they will eat. Here are some tips and suggested foods to do this.

On another note, there may come a time when you run out of your food stores and need to go to the store in the aftermath of a disaster. If this occurs, be prepared for regular food staples to be in limited supplies. Foods like bread, milk, and eggs usually are the first items that run out. We saw that during the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.  If you find yourself in this situation, look for alternatives to those foods.

Start with a 3-day food supply and keep prepping

I have found that when starting your preparedness measures, it is best to start at the beginning in order to ensure you have everything you need to build up your preparedness foundation. Start your preparations with a 72-hour kit and then create a vehicle 72-hour kit. Once that is complete, you can begin ensuring your basic needs are met for longer periods or begin targeting other layers of preparedness. This is the foundation of your preparedness supply.

A 3 day or 72-hour kit is small enough that items can be added to a backpack to take with you in the case of a sudden disaster that comes without warning. These preparedness kits should be made for all members of the family that can account for their basic needs for 3 days. Once your 3-day supply is secure, you need to move on to expand disaster supplies to encompass more areas of preparedness.


Consider, for a moment, how drastically your life would change without the continuous flow of energy the grid delivers. What would our lives be like without access to communication channels telling us what is going on? How vulnerable would we feel not knowing what is going on around us? For that matter, how would we get in touch with loved ones to let them know how we are?

Communication during a disaster can be quite troublesome given that the power grid goes down during most natural disasters. Sadly, during these types of disasters, family and loved ones need those communication channels up the most and it can be quite frustrating when they aren’t.

Prepare ahead for this!

According to the CDC, families should develop different methods for communicating during emergency situations and share their plans beforehand with all those who would be worried about their welfare. Options for remaining in contact with family and friends if a disaster strikes include:

  • Phone contact with a designated family member or friend who is unlikely to be affected by the same disaster.
  • Email notification via a family distribution list.
  • Registration on the American Red Cross Safe and Well Website.
  • Use of the toll-free Contact Loved Ones voice messaging service (1-866-78-CONTACT).

Types of Emergency Communication Channels

Cell Phones/Computers

At first glance, there is little potential for these devices when the grid goes down. Without the multitude of servers that are scattered around the globe and the electricity that feeds them, our computers are nothing more than bulky hard drives. Cell phones might still work for a little while since some cell towers have backup batteries and solar panels, but their use might be short lived.

However, don’t be too quick to scoff at the prepping potential of these devices. Computers might still be useful for communicating in some cases. It’s fairly easy to create a local wifi network (aka ad hoc network) between computers that are within range of each other. This would allow people living on the same street or in the same apartment building to talk to each other, provided they can generate their own electricity.

The better solution would be to create a local network for cell phones that isn’t reliant on any infrastructure. Their energy demands are far less than other computers, their range is longer than wifi, and they are of course, mobile. The technology for creating a peer to peer network between cell phones has existed for some time now, but unfortunately, it has yet to be sold to the public. Companies like Terranet have been perfecting it over the past few years, and they estimate that about 30% of cell phones will be capable of making these networks with a simple software change. So right now, cell phones will be pretty much useless when the grid goes down, but that may change before the end of the decade.

Ham Radio

When most preppers think of communications, ham radios usually come to mind, and for good reason. They can communicate to other radios over hundreds of miles, and they may be the only form of very long distance communication when all else fails. Unfortunately, they wouldn’t be very useful for the average person.

They use a lot of electricity, the equipment can be pretty expensive, and only about 700,000 Americans are licensed operators. Still, if even a fraction of them are up and running after a major disaster, they will play a crucial role in the relief effort. Due to their limited numbers and the amount of resources that are required to keep them running, you won’t see them being used for casual conversation, but you will see them used by communities for conducting commerce and coordinating reconstruction efforts.

CB Radio/Walkie Talkie

I suspect that CB Radio’s and Walkie Talkies will be the main form of communication for the average person, and they are the best candidates for filling the gap that cell phones and internet providers would leave behind. If anything, CB radios were our parent’s version of the internet. They were affordable and accessible, you had to learn the lingo to use them, they allowed you to communicate anonymously, and much like the internet, they were used to skirt the law from time to time.

There are millions of CB radios lying around, and many of them are still being used by truckers today, so they will be available to many of the survivors. More importantly, they don’t use too much electricity, they’re more user-friendly than ham radios, and some of them are portable. Depending on the conditions you’re using them in, their range can extend anywhere from 1 to 25 miles.

As for walkie talkies, I don’t have to tell you how useful they could be. Much like the wifi network I spoke of earlier, these will be pretty handy for staying in touch with your neighbors. Together, CB radios and walkie talkies will be most common form communication after a disaster.


If the grid is down long enough, eventually some enterprising citizens would start to provide courier services. Whether it’s by foot or by bicycle, they will fill an important niche that other items on this list can’t provide, and that is a secure form of communication. If you had to send a message to someone who lives out of the range of your radio or wifi network, and you needed that message to remain a secret, writing that message down and sending someone out to deliver it by hand would be the only way to do it. Wifi just doesn’t have the range, and radios are too easy to listen in on.


Image result for ready nutrition and fireSo, the power is out. You have all of this wonderful food stored away but no way to cook it. Before you resign yourself to baked beans at room temperature out of the can, consider your options. You may not have a functioning kitchen but you can still do some cooking.

As with all things related to prepping, you should have a backup plan, and a backup plan for your backup plan, and if you can, one more for good measure. Further, having an ample supply of items to use to create fire with will be paramount in an emergency situation. Therefore, keep the following items stocked up in your supplies:

  • Stock plenty of fuel for your cooking methods. (Be sure to store your fuel properly and in accordance with local fire regulations.)
  • Store matches in waterproof containers.
  • Lighters
  • Dry wood
  • If you have a place to store them, tightly roll newspapers and magazines to use for fuel. You can also use newspapers to biomass logs.
  • Fireproof cooking vessels

If a fire is not an option for cooking there are several alternatives you can turn to. Here are some popular options for alternative cooking sources

  • Camping propane stove
  • Rocket stove
  • Solar funnel cooker
  •  Propane or charcoal BBQ grill
  • Charcoal Hibachi (you can burn nearly anything in this as long as it is non-toxic)
  • Outdoor fireplace
  • #10 Can cookstove
  • Sun Oven
  • The Wonderbag

Whichever type of cooking vessel you use, make sure you have an ample supply of fuel to use. Whichever fuel you decide, store an ample supply. For example, if you choose to grill food using a BBQ grill, understand that one large bag of charcoal briquettes will last for about 4 cook outs. If you’re preparing for a 10-day emergency, you will need 10 bags of charcoal. As well, temperatures can affect the amount of fuel you use as well. For instance, low temperatures and the wind can greatly influence the amount of propane you use on camping stoves. It can increase the amount of fuel used by three! My family has an indoor wood burning grill,

In such a case, I like to have multiple ways to cook emergency food. My family has an indoor wood burning grill, we also own a rocket stove and a solar cooker. We have an outdoor grill too but in a dire emergency situation, we want to maintain OPSEC (operational security) and do not want all the neighbors knowing we have food. A fear of many preppers during the beginning stages of a true SHTF event is how our smells, as well as the aromas from foods we prepare, could attract unwanted visitors. Cooking food can be smelled in best conditions up to a half mile or so. Further, those who have gone without food for days on end will have a heightened sense of smell and will use this to their advantage. Keep this in mind when choosing how you will be preparing food.


The right tools are a valuable commodity when it comes to survival and essential items to have on hand for hunting, digging, cutting, communicating and navigational purposes. A 72-hour bag should have all items necessary to survive for 3 days. Bottom line is your preparedness tools are your life line and without them, you could be ill-equipped in a survival situation.

The ten tools listed below are some of the most important survival tools that should be in your 72-hour bags. Of course, other items can be included, but these essentials are a must-have for every survival pack. Practice using these tools regularly so that you know their capability and their strength.

  • Knives (large machete type and a smaller Gerber hunter)
  • Multi-tool
  • Camping shovels
  • Candles
  • Hammer
  • Hatchet
  • Collapsible fishing pole with hooks, line, bobbers, etc.
  • Flares
  • Maps, compass or GPS devices (Having extra compasses ensures that navigation is accurate).
  • Rope or paracord
  • Knife sharpening stone
  • Flash light with extra batteries (get one flashlight for each family member)
  • Headlamps
  • Light sticks
  • Fire starting supplies including a lighter and a magnesium rod 

Read more about essential survival tools here. As well, consider having separate supplies for your vehicle.

Not only will you need the above-listed tools, but you will also need tools if your home has been damaged by a disaster. In the backbreaking early stages of rubble removal, simple hand tools will play a vital role in transporting and removing debris. Acquiring basic hand tools—shovels, axes, and hammers—meet immediate demolition needs and then take on a long-term role once construction resumes. The tools used in the first phase of reconstruction were:

1. Round point and square nose shovels, preferably heavy-duty variety with extra long blade socket.
2. Pick axe
3. Pulaski Axe
4. Rig builder’s hatchet
5. Axe
6. Bow saw
7. 24-oz. framing hammer
8. Sledge hammer
9. Digging bars, preferably both pointed and chisel tip varieties; crow bars.
10. Leather or synthetic work gloves
11. Protective eye wear
12. Hard hats
13. Dust masks
14. Contractor-grade wheel barrows
15. Bolt cutters
16. Large-diameter heavy-duty weatherproof rope; small-diameter light-duty line
17. Rope hoist/pulley, minimum 250-lb. capacity
18. Folding knife

Quite simply, having these tools and equipment on hand will help you operate in a non-technological environment. The bottom line is your preparedness tools are your life line and without them, you could be ill-equipped in a survival situation.

Written Survival Information

Image result for ready nutrition and survival booksIn a high-stress situation, it’s easy to forget the basic how-tos of tasks that you don’t perform every day.

Many survival manuals and printouts can easily be downloaded onto a flash drive to be taken along in your bug out bags. Don’t underestimate the value of a spiritual book to boost the morale.


You want books like:

I like to have hard copies of important books on hand at home. If the power is out, you may not be able to access e-books or websites.


The reality is that the vast majority of people have about three days of food and water at home and when a prolonged disaster strikes it upends the stability of the entire system of just-in-time delivery. When those delivery trucks stop delivering, things can be pretty dicey.

Most people strive to make their homes safe and secure. We install motion lights, fence the yard and make windows difficult to open. We have good quality locks on the doors and sometimes burglar alarms, as well. But all it takes is opening the door to the wrong person, or someone throwing a lawn chair through a glass window.

In a disaster situation, these security measures may not be enough. We need only to look at the aftermath of hurricanes and other natural disasters to see that looters are out in full force, taking advantage of the people who have already lost so much. As we’ve said here before, “If you can’t protect it, you don’t own it!”  This is a common human response to disasters and most preppers know this which is why they have guns and ammunition with which they will defend their homes and families.

But let’s explore some other ways you can protect your home and belongings. One way is to understand the mind of the criminal. An MSNBC affiliate out of Atlanta recently did just that. They sent letters to 86 people who had gone to prison for burglary and asked them a variety questions about their crimes. Their answers could tell you a lot about how to protect your home from this crime. What they told reporters included the following:

  • Don’t advertise what you own. One burglar admitted to looking for homes that had cars with NRA bumper stickers, which would indicate that there are plenty of guns to steal there.
  • Burglars don’t just look in obvious places. If they feel safe, they’ll tear everything up looking for hidden valuables.
  • The best time to break into a house was between 12:30 and 2:30, because it’s rare for both kids or adults to be home at that time period.
  • Not all burglars are intimidated by security alarm signs and cameras, and many admitted to knowing how to disable alarms. Some suggested that cameras would indicate that there are valuables in the home.
  • As you might expect, burglars are terrified of large dog breeds.
  • Burglars aren’t typically killers. They don’t want to a serious confrontation with a homeowner, so any sign that someone is home is a deterrent.

You can read more about that here, but essentially, if you know what to expect, then you can better prepare for it. Remember – prioritize, prepare and plan for what may come.

Preventative measures can be put in place to keep criminals far away from your home.  Minimize the threat of a home break in or home invasion by adding layers of security to prevent your home from being a possible hit.  Security layers are preventative measures put into place that will advertise to possible intruders to avoid your home altogether.

Having firearms on site will help you reinforce these security measures and continue protecting your home. By training with these weapons, you will be familiarizing yourself with firearms you will definitely see in one way, shape, or form in a SHTF scenario.  Learning how to operate these will stimulate you to develop skills and perhaps to purchase one or more in civilian/legal ownership form.  There are also plenty of qualified instructors to be found in these ranges, and a high-end range that is worth its salt will provide one for you to familiarize you with the weapon free of charge before you fire it.

The 3 Security Layers for the home

Layer 1: The Outside Layer

  • Reinforced doors and locks.  There is only 1 ” of wood protecting you in normal door locks.
  • Invest in heavy duty door hinges and secure door frames with 3 ” screws.
  • Barred windows or European-style security/storm shutters.
  • Doors that are not glass or see through.
  • Install a peep hole for the door.
  • Never rely on a chain latch as an effective barrier (they are easily broken if the door is kicked in).
  • Install infrared flood lights or motion detector lights around the perimeter of the home.
  • A gate at the front of the driveway that has spikes at the top to prevent someone from jumping over the fence
  • Never leave a spare key hidden under a rock or door mat.  Too many people do this and it is the first place a criminal is going to look.
  • Cut back large trees or bushes near the windows to provide concealment.  Additionally, putting thorn bushes and other types of plants to further secure the home would be advantageous.
  • Have a guard dog trained to attack.  And place “beware of dog” signs on the front and side gates of the home.

Layer 2: The Inside Layer

  • Consider adding a 2-way voice feature to the existing alarm system.  This feature enables your security system to communicate directly with the control panel.  This feature also allows you to call into your system and be able to listen to any activity or speak to your child or other family members who are home.
  • Position web cams strategically in hidden areas.  Place the computer that is monitoring the locations in a hidden spot so the criminals do not walk off with the computer.
  • Have emergency plans and protocols set up where children or teens can see them.  Additionally, have important contact phone numbers next to the plan.
  • Teach the household how to call 9-1-1, and have a script ready for them to read to the dispatcher.  This will help keep them explain calmly to the dispatcher what the emergency situation is.
  • Teach members of the home different escape routes to use in case they need to leave the home, as well as a code word to use for the family to immediately leave the home to go to a safe location.
  • Close all curtains and blinds at night time and set the alarm.
  • Keep purses, car keys, money and jewelry away from windows where burglars can look in and see.  This only makes them want to break in more.
  • If a gun is in the home, have it locked up or put away so that smaller children do not try to use it.

Layer 3: The Personal Layer

This is the most critical layer.

  • Teach family members to be observant of their surroundings when coming home and be aware of suspicious activity.
  • Never open the door to strangers.  Teach children not to be easily persuaded by strangers who look professional or have badges.
  • Teach children to call “safe” adults, such as neighbors for help in cases where parents are not home.
  • Get to know your neighbors and have their phone numbers on hand in case the child needs help from a nearby adult.
  • Or, arrange a neighborhood watch program.
  • Never be afraid to call the police if a stranger or solicitor is acting suspiciously.
  • Teach children how to use the security alarm and where the panic button is.
  • Find a bug out location for family members to go to for safety.
  • If someone is trying to break into your home, activate your car alarm or panic button on the security alarm to draw attention from the neighbors.
  • As a last resort, teach older members of the home and older children how to use weapons against intruders.

In many cases, the local officials will be just as confused as you and may give mixed messages on how serious the situation is. In their defense, the information they are getting is constantly changing and informing the public is difficult at best.  Knowing this will help you ensure your preparedness plans are solid.

In an even longer-term situation, more plans for defense would need to be made, with perimeters, night watches, and an organized plan.


Once you move past the basics of prepping, the best thing for your plan is to learn a new skill or two. Remember, in an emergency situation there won’t be a repair shop to take your tools to or a grocery store to buy more food from. When the SHTF (Stuff Hits The Fan) you’ll be left to rely on the skills you have, and with no Internet available to look up information on, you might be stuck.

Mastering some basic off-the-grid skills will greatly enhance your survivability

Because many people are not adequately trained to handle the disaster situations in which they find themselves in, having the proper skills and training will provide an individual with a well-diversified knowledge base to help them survive during and after a disaster.

Not all Skills Are Created Equal

It is important to emphasize that some skills are more important than others. The first I would recommend are those skill sets that will enhance your off-grid environment.

  • Outdoor survival course
  • Medical training
  • Disaster classes
  • Canning and food preparation
  • Firearm training
  • Amateur radio classes
  • Exercise and weight training (get your body into shape)
  • Gardening/food production classes

Basically, any class that fits your basic survival needs, take it! As well, don’t neglect the primitive skills one can learn too. Many of these skills will carry you into longer-term preparedness measures, so the more you know the better.

One area of skills we all need to focus our attention on is self-defense. Self-defense is a crucial skill that we all should know, and it takes time to develop these skills. No doubt there have been times where you may have found yourself in a situation where you looked around and didn’t feel comfortable, and in some cases, the situation had the potential to quickly become dangerous. It’s important to have situational awareness and be aware of your surroundings at all times. If you do not feel comfortable, don’t feel bad about getting out of the situation altogether. As well, trust your gut. When your intuition is making your “Spidey senses” go off, it’s time to get out of there.

In many cases, predators watch their potential victims before they strike. In a study regarding how predators selected their victims, pedestrians were videotaped walking down a street and had incarcerated convicts view them. Within seven seconds of viewing the pedestrians, the convicts had selected their targets. Selections were not based on gender, size, age or race, but rather on the body language exhibited. The convicts identified the following body language cues used as their basis for victim selection:

Posture: People that walked with shoulders slouched or slumped were selected as victims as opposed to those who walked with their chin up.
Gaze: Those avoiding eye contact were chosen as victims because of the perception that they were preoccupied. Making eye contact naturally communicates confidence.
Stride: People who walked with a stride that was too long or too short, or those who shuffled or dragged their feet, were selected over those who had a smooth and natural gait.
Rate: Those who walked slowly with no apparent purpose, and those who walked fast as if they were uncomfortable, were selected over those who walked naturally and deliberately.
Fluidity: Those who demonstrated awkwardness in their movements were chosen over those who seemed to glide as they walked.
Wholeness: Those who swung their arms wildly while walking were selected over those who moved from their center, with coordination and balance.

Physical impairments may prevent some people from projecting confidence. If they fail, victims must decide whether or not defensive action is necessary and appropriate. Carrying a concealed firearm can level the playing field, but retrieving it may not always be possible. Introducing a firearm into a volatile situation isn’t always the best response. That determination is dictated by the totality of the circumstances. Two studies may provide helpful insight when making that decision. (Source)

Learning how to fight is your last lifeline of protection. Learning escape and evasion tactics, self-defense strategies like Krav Maga or even learning to use everyday objects to protect yourself can enhance survival. The most important aspect to learn is not to hesitate when confronted. Again, this skill set takes time to master but may save your life.


Disasters do not just happen to other people – they can happen to you.  When you are prepared for a particular scenario, then you already have tools in place for when you need them the most. While many feel that preparedness is an enormous endeavor, when you break it down into organized lists, it’s not so daunting. Keep prepping and keep an eye out for our next preparedness guide.

Remember to fall back on your list of lists to ensure that you are purchasing the needed items for the disaster you are preparing for. Have a well rounded short-term supply to compliment your long term food items.  Store your emergency supplies in an easy to access part of your home where natural elements such as sunlight and moisture are not an issue.

As well, keep in mind that once you get your preps, you will need to maintain them to ensure your emergency items are ready to go. Your gear can best be maintained according to a maintenance schedule and you can get a start on it now.  Some preppers do it twice a year when Daylight Savings Time hits. But it’s more than giving it a glance and it doesn’t just mean cleaning it.  It also means inspecting it for serviceability and function.  It means making sure that it’s well organized and that you can pick it up at a moment’s notice. You can’t do that unless it’s ready.

Course Discussion

We all have a way to help others prepare. New preppers, if you have questions, leave them in the comment section and as a community, we can help to answer them. You’re not in this alone. I know this information provided is a lot to take in, just pace yourself, have fun with it, and we are all here for you if you need it.

Sign Up For This Week’s Giveaway!

*** A winner has been chosen. Thanks to all the participants! ***

We’re giving away The Prepper’s Blueprint – widely popular and highly rated preparedness manual and a 72-hour kit at the end of this week to a lucky winner.

All you have to do is sign up for our newsletter and leave a comment in one of our weekly Crash Course guides about what you feel the most important aspect of being prepared is in the bottom of the article. Good luck everyone!


Additional Reading:

A Crash Course in Preparedness – Week 2 – Medicine, Sanitation, and Surviving Disaster Diseases

52-Weeks to Preparedness

Essential Prepping Calculators

20 Preparedness Articles To Help You Get Prepped

The Prepper’s Blueprint: A Must-Have Preparedness Manual

20 Additional Preps You Want in the Car for Urban Survival

The Ultimate Prepper’s Survival Guide – Survive When Disaster Strikes.

A Comprehensive Guide to Home Storage, Bartering, Bugging Out, Weapons, and Self-Defense. Stuff You Need to Survive When Disaster Strikes.

Prepper's survival guideLet’s face it… prepping has become a glutted niche with thousands upon thousands of survival blogs, books, magazines, and related articles. It’s gotten to the point that it’s almost ridiculous with an unmanageable deluge of information about prepping that’s online and in print with most just repeating what has already been said over and over again. That’s why I put together this massive 11,344-word preppers survival guide. It cuts through all the clutter and gives you everything you need to know to know about prepper food storage, bartering, bug out bags and bugging out, weapons selection, and home and or retreat defense so that you can not only survive but thrive after disaster strikes, whether that disaster is a local natural event or a total collapse of civilization. Are you ready?

That’s why I put together this massive 11,344-word preppers survival guide. It cuts through all the clutter and gives you everything you need to know to know about prepper food storage, bartering, bug out bags and bugging out, weapons selection, and home and or retreat defense so that you can not only survive but thrive after disaster strikes, whether that disaster is a local natural event or a total collapse of civilization. Are you ready?

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Let’ Start With an Easy to Follow Food Storage Checklist

When it comes to storing enough food to survive, unassisted and on your own for three six-months or a full year or even longer is the point where most new preppers get overwhelmed and some even give up altogether. And while I agree that storing and rotating such a large amount of food on a continuing basis can be a lot of work and takes dedication, it is by no means impossible, and if done right can even be enjoyable – just follow the preppers food storage list below.

You should start with the basics first wheat (or other grains, for those who have trouble digesting gluten), rice, beans, oats, corn, salt, honey, cooking oil and powdered milk.


This is the backbone of your survival diet. Wheat is nature’s longest storing seed, with an indefinite shelf life given proper storage conditions. The wheat (and other grains) can also be sprouted, adding fresh greens to the diet even in winter.


Rice is my favorite storage foods and I actually prefer rice over wheat for storage, but that’s a personal decision, and well I like rice and rice dishes. White rice stores better and has a longer shelf-life than brown rice; however brown rice has more nutritional value. Despite the trade-off in storage duration, I still prefer brown rice for storage because of the added nutritional value.


Beans, corn, and rice combined make a complete food, providing just about everything you need to survive. Add some fresh green sprouts or garden produce and extra vitamin C just to be sure you’re getting enough to avoid scurvy, and you’ll be well fed and healthy.

I like to store a combination of pinto beans, black beans, and mung beans. How much you store of each will depend on your personal preferences to taste.


Don’t go overboard when storing oats, about 20 pounds per adult per year is plenty. Oats have a storage life of approximately four to six years, depending on storage conditions and whether or not they have been opened after being packaged for long term storage.


Corn equals cornmeal, cornbread, cornmeal mush, corn cakes, and a huge list of other foods that you can prepare using the seed. I store whole corn because it stores much better and with at least double the shelf-like of cracked corn.


While not a food but a mineral, salt, is none the less essential to the diet and individual health. Salt is also used in the preservation of food and animal products. Salt, like wheat, has an indefinite shelf life. Store at least 10 pounds of iodized salt per person, per year.

It’s also a good idea to stock up on salt blocks to attract game animals for future harvesting. You can find these in the sporting goods stores and other outlets that sell to hunters. You can also get these through your local farmers co-op, where they sell them for domestic livestock supplementation.

Honey or Sugar

As a sweetener honey makes an unequaled contribution to the diet. Honey, like wheat and salt, has an indefinite self-life. Store at least 10 pounds per person. If the honey hardens and crystallizes, heat it slowly in a double boiler to reconstitute.

Cooking Oil

There is some controversy as to which is best for storage in the preppers pantry, vegetable oil or olive oil, while both will work fine and you should stock up on the one that you like best. I recommend putting away, 10 quarts, per person, per year.

Powdered Milk

Most people turn their nose at the thought of powdered milk, preferring whole milk from the supermarket shelf. Granted it does have a slightly different taste, but it’s not unpleasant to drink, and after a week or two it seems to “grow” on you. Studies have shown that nonfat powdered milk, when packaged (nitrogen-packed) and stored properly has a storage life of 20 years or more.

Stockpiling Hard To Store Foods

I prefer to buy those hard-to-store long-term items like powdered milk, dry margarine, butter powder, buttermilk powder, cheese powder, shortening, and powdered eggs prepackaged for long-term storage in #10 metal cans, from Augason Farms or other reputable survival food vendors.

Supermarket Canned Foods

food storage list for preppers canned foodsCanned foods from the supermarket have many advantages when it comes to food storage, they have a decent shelf-life on average of 2-5 years for most products, (note: shelf-life means that the foods retain 100% of their listed original nutritional value up until that point – store bought canned foods remain edible, far past the listed expiration dates in most cases).

As long as the cans aren’t bulging, rusted through or punctured and the foods smell fresh, upon opening then I would not hesitate to eat canned goods that are far past their listed expiration date. But that is a personal choice and one you’ll have to make yourself when the decision is needed.

Store bought canned foods have several advantages over freeze-dried or dehydrated foods, including cost and calories contained per serving. Another advantage is that canned foods already have their own water supply for preparation, so there is no need to use any potable water from your storage.

Despite the advantages of canned foods over freeze-dried and dehydrated foods, canned goods do have some disadvantages in comparison, like, weight, space needed for storage, and shelf-life.

I like to include a combination of the basic foods like wheat, rice, and beans, store bought canned foods and certain “packaged for long-term storage” foods that are hard to store like powdered milk from one of the reputable survival food vendors…

All canned foods should be dated using a permanent marker and rotated on a FIFO (first-in-first-out) basis. I suggest that you build a rotating canned food shelf that will automatically rotate your canned foods when added and pulled from the shelf.

Always keep a notepad beside the shelf or in your kitchen, and write down every item that you take from the shelf and then take the note with you on your next trip to the supermarket, and then buy and restock the items that you’ve taken from the shelf, that way you always have a fully stocked shelf and a fresh supply.

Don’t Forget the Can Opener:

Sure you could use a knife, but a manual can opener is easier and safer – so whatever else you do, don’t forget the can opener. Buy several of the strongest made ones that you can find.

Other Foods

After you get the basic foods listed above in the needed proportions (see below), it is a simple matter to add other foods as you get the extra money.

Canned meats: We all know that SPAM is the preppers go to for a cheap “meat” source that has a longer than average shelf-life, and fat content. Canned hams, tuna, salmon, chicken, and turkey are all welcome additions in my pantry shelf – stock-up on the meats that your family normally eat and date and rotate just as you would any other canned food.

White flour: White flour from the store has a much longer shelf-life than does whole wheat flour because it has been “processed” which removes the oily germ, but unfortunately this “processing also removes the nutrition.

Processed white flour has a shelf-life of over five years if kept dry and safe from pests (like the meal moth). Mill moths get into the flour, lay eggs and those eggs turn into flour weevils, which ruin the flour. Look for tiny dark specks in the flour, as this is the first sign that the flour has been infested.

If it clumps together because of settling, just break it apart and run it through a sifter before use.

Store flour for long-term storage in airtight containers, with oxygen absorbers, added – see details below. You can also freeze flour that has been put into five-gallon buckets. Freezing will also kill any meal moths that happen to have been trapped inside before they can do any damage to your flour.

Most of my “flour” is in the form of whole wheat berries, that I have to mill (grind) before use, but I do have some processed flour in my pantry, for lazy days when I don’t feel like grinding whole wheat into usable flour.

Peanut butter: Peanut butter is a good source of fat and calories and has a decent shelf-life. Peanut butter is also an energy food and one that I always take on hunting and camping trips. Unopened peanut butter will last for years.

Spices: Be sure to include a good selection of spices in your food storage. Spices can make even the most awkward foods palatable, and help to alleviate food boredom. Cinnamon, Turmeric, Paprika, Ginger, Oregano, and Garlic are my favorites and make up the bulk of the spices in my pantry.

Baking powder, baking soda, and yeast: Baking powder, baking soda, and yeast (keep yeast frozen to extend shelf-life) are also essential since you’re storing and baking using unprocessed grains.

Dried pasta: Dried pasta will keep indefinitely if kept dry in bug and rodent proof containers.

Comfort Foods: Storing a sufficient amount of “comfort foods” is very important, to your psychological well-being as well as to alleviate “food-boredom” that is sure to set in after eating only storage foods for several months. Comfort foods are even more important if you have children or need to care for the elderly.

Consider comfort foods such as – Jell-O, instant pudding mix, cake mix, hard candies, chewing gum, Spaghettios, mac and cheese, brownie mix, canned spaghetti and meatballs, mashed potatoes, popcorn, cocoa, tea, coffee, powdered juice mixes, sunflower seeds etc. And remember to date and rotate on a FIFO basis.

We crave variety and having a supply of familiar comfort foods can go a long way toward retaining our sanity and self-worth during a long term disaster. You can only deny yourself for so long before desperation and depression start to set in. Life will be difficult enough – give yourself a treat. You deserve it.

It is a proven fact that if we are forced to eat foods we don’t want or the same foods for extended periods – just to stay alive – dissociation begins to set in. We begin to float away as an escape – we still eat to stay alive, but suffer a lack of focus and become disorientated in relation to our surroundings.

This is dangerous in a survival setting. Don’t think it can happen? Try eating nothing but beans and rice for three months and you’ll see what I mean. Having a supply of comfort foods can help by providing at least some form of normalcy to your life.

Older folks and children will have the hardest time adjusting to new or unfamiliar foods, with many refusing to eat altogether, especially if the food is unnecessarily bland or unappetizing. Comfort foods will help them cope.

Vitamins: To ensure that you’re getting a sufficient amount of needed daily vitamins and minerals for optimum health, you need to stockpile a good multi-vitamin and mineral supplement. Also consider extra vitamin C and D. Vitamin D is of extra importance if you’re forced to stay inside (bugging in) for a longer than normal period of time and thus are unable to receive the needed vitamin D producing sunlight that is required for optimal health.

Don’t Forget about Your Pets: Don’t forget to include a sufficient amount of food in your stockpile to feed your pets. A decent dog will increase your chances of survival because they can hunt and alert you to trespassers and other trouble. I prefer smaller dual-purpose breeds, with my choice for a working dog being the Jack Russell terrier.

A Sample Three Month Food Storage List for One Adult

  • Wheat 75 Pounds
  • Grains, rice, oats etc. 25 Pounds
  • Canned meats 5 Pounds
  • Canned margarine, powdered eggs etc. 2 Pounds
  • Dried beans, peas, lentils, etc., 6 Pounds
  • Dried fruit juice and concentrates 6 Pounds
  • Dried fruits or canned 25 Pound (if dried, then equal to this fresh weight
  • Comfort foods 3 Pounds
  • Non-fat dried milk 25 pounds
  • Peanut butter or substitute protein/fat source 3 pounds
  • Dried potatoes 12 pounds (equal to this fresh weight)
  • Salt 2 pounds
  • Shortening oils 3 quarts
  • Sugar or honey 12 pounds
  • Canned or dried vegetables 9 pounds (if dried, then equal to this fresh weight)

Please bear in mind that the above list is only a sample to help you get started, the most useful food storage list is the one that you put together yourself. After all who knows better than you, what you and your family, likes to eat and in what amounts.

Where to Put All this Food?

After reading the above recommendations, you’re probably asking yourself where in the heck, you’re going to store all of this food. Well, that’s a good question and one that you alone can answer for your situation better than anyone else, but I’ll make a few suggestions that I hope will point you in the right direction.

The absolute best place in an underground bunker, root cellar or basement, unfortunately, most people don’t have any of those and have to make due with other less ideal storage options… Consider a spare bedroom, attached garage, detached storage building on your property, or as a last-resort a nearby storage unit rental.

If at all possible put in an underground storage area of some sort to keep you storage foods safe (and you) safe from weather extremes, as well as the main enemy of your food-storage shelf-life; heat. An excellent option, and inexpensive when compared to other suitable alternatives is the buried shipping container.

How to Store Dried Beans and Grains at Home for Long-Term Storage with Oxygen Absorbers & Mylar Bags

I store all my grains, beans and other dry foods (besides sugar, salt or sprouting seeds) inside food-grade five-gallon plastic buckets. There is some controversy over what is and isn’t food grade. Most buckets with #2 inside a small triangle on the bottom are food grade, but not all – the only way to be reasonably certain is to contact the manufacturer and ask.

I buy mine from the local hardware store in the paint department. They also have them at my Wal-Mart, but, I prefer to buy from local business owners if possible. Sometimes they can even be gotten free from bakeries and restaurants, just be sure they only held food products – not paint, chemicals or other things that can make you sick or dead.

Foods packed in oxygen don’t store as well as those in an oxygen free atmosphere. Oxygen absorbers work by removing the air from the enclosed container, leaving an atmosphere of 99% pure nitrogen in a partial vacuum inside the buckets.

Don’t open the bag of oxygen absorbers until ready to use because they will absorb oxygen from the surrounding air and become useless. Have everything ready to go before you open the package. Any unused oxygen absorbers can be stored inside a small canning jar until needed.

Be sure to have everything ready to go before you start. Line the inside of the bucket with an appropriately sized Mylar bag these will help to keep light and moisture out extending the storage life of the foods inside.

The Mylar bag also offers a layer of protection between the food and the plastic bucket, if for some reason the bucket that you’re using isn’t considered food-grade.

Pour the food into the buckets a little at a time, shaking each bucket as it is being filled to settle and distribute the contents. Fill each bucket to about ½ inch from the top and throw in one 2000 cc oxygen absorber in each five-gallon bucket of food.

Now to seal the Mylar bag – first roll the top of the bag closed on one end leaving an opening at the other and press out any air that has been trapped inside, next place a 2×4 across the top of the bucket and pull the Mylar bag over the 2×4 and seal with a clothing iron set at the highest setting in a typical ironing fashion across the board.

Quickly put the lids on each bucket and pound shut by laying the board on the top and striking with a hammer or rubber mallet. After a few hours, the absorbers will create a vacuum that will cause the lids on the buckets to “pop down” indicating a good seal and a proper atmosphere for long term storage. Be sure to label each with date, content, and weight, written on the front with a permanent marker

Okay, Now Let’s Put Together Your Bug Out Bag 

bug out bag and gun

Bug Out Bag: Ready to get the heck out of dodge… in a hurry!

There has been a lot of talk over the years about bugging out, bug out bags, and bug out bag lists. The subject of “bugging out” is bound to come up in any conversation about survival preps and every survival blog has at least one article posted about how to put together a bug out bag.

Why Bug Out?

The subject of bugging out and bug out bags (some preppers refer to this kit as a bug out backpack) is a popular one and for good reason, disasters like hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, flash floods or another natural disaster, could force survivors to “head for the hills” in search of safer ground.

We are constantly threatened by a series of potential disasters, both natural and man-made. It seems like we are being threatened from all sides, and sometimes, I admit to feeling like just throwing up my hands in despair and just giving up. It’s easy to give up. But I shake it off and prep harder than before. I’m funny like that…

We also face a series of potential long-term disasters including, ecological collapse, economic collapse, agriculture disaster, war, plague, pandemic, an over oppressive government or any number of disasters that could force the need to seek safer footing or even hide-out in the hills long-term.

Bugging Out Vs. Hunkering Down

If you’ve read my article bugging out vs. hunkering down then you already know that bugging out to the hills should be your last option when you have no other choice.

Bug out bags should be considered as a temporary survival plan or as a backup at best. You should keep in mind if you are forced to leave your home or retreat; you have essentially made yourself a refugee, which is the last thing you want during hard times.

A bug out kit will keep you alive for a few days, or weeks… then what? You had better have a way to supply your basic needs after exhausting the gear contained in your bug out bag contents.

Keep in mind that we are not talking about bugging out from the city to a pre-set-up and well-stocked retreat in the hills, if this is your plan then you might not need a “bug out bag” since you can just load everything into your car and take off. But still having the bug out bag essentials, i.e. life-saving gear in a pack or kit that is ready to grab and go is a good idea if you have to abandon your bug out vehicle and head out on foot.

It would be great if you already have a stockpile of food, medications, and gear waiting for you at a mountain retreat, let’s just hope that you can actually, get past the blocked roads, carjackers, checkpoints and other hazards that will be met along the way get there, unscathed.

If you do somehow, manage to make it through, all of the en-route hazards to your well-stocked retreat in the hills, still don’t be surprised when you’re “greeted” at the door by another family or group that has already, moved in. What would you do? They may outnumber you and be better armed… Will you walk away? Will you stay and fight for what is yours?

If at all possible, move to your retreat or relocate to a safer area now – before disaster strikes. Learn to grow your own food, raise small livestock and get to know your neighbors. I just hope that it’s not too late in the game for you to make the move. Time is running out and deep down I think that it’s already too late to relocate…

Bugging Out and Putting Together Your Bug Out Bag

Anyways, back to bugging out and how to put together a bug out bag…

Some survivalist aka “preppers” look at this type of bug out kit as an “escape and evasion” bag. Where they will use the kit as a grab and go bag that will be used if they’re forced to head out to the forest and mountains to hide from danger – for most this is a flawed idea.

Living completely free of civilization, scrounging for food and shelter in the forest, mountains or desert for any significant length of time can be done, under the right conditions, by some people. But it would not be easy and the constant struggle to stay alive would be more than many could handle and most would not make it very long.

But when you’re left with no other option, besides stay and die or bug out to the hills and maybe survive a few extra days, it’s worth a try, and having a “bug out or escape and evasion bag” ready to go will give you a better chance of making it…

The prospect of the hidden cave or dugout stocked with survival supplies should be a considered. Having a hidden cache of essential survival gear could mean the difference between death and survival if you’re forced to head for the hills.

I have several cache tubes hidden around my area and have been working on putting in more. I will only leave my home/retreat if I have no other choice. I would rather stay and fight then run and hide, but if I have to run and hide, the hidden caches will give me a better chance of making it…

If it’s a natural disaster, where help will be on the way, but you have to leave for you immediate safety (say a hurricane is heading your way) would a friend or family member in a distant town take you in? You need to have a “disaster buddy” in another area, but still reachable in a few hours’ drive, with whom you’ve already made plans and have an agreement with, where if a disaster happens in your area that you can go to his place to wait it out and vice versa.

A government shelter, not for me thank you. I want to stay out of the FEMA camps.  And who wants to be dependent on the government for their survival anyways? Not me. But then I’m one of those “wrong-headed” Americans who would rather trust their own wits and skills than the government to take care of them after a disaster (or anytime)… They just hate that.

What You Should Have in Your Bug Out Bag

Okay, so what should be included in a bug out bag? Well, that depends on you personally – you’ll have to consider things, like your location and where you’re going, your health, your skills, and time of the year. That’s why that there’s no one bug out bag list that fits all needs and individuals. But by looking at the bug out bag lists that have been put together by a number of different people, we can get ideas to work with and expand our bug out bags for our personal location and needs.

What’s In My Bug Out Bag

Okay, since we are talking about bug out bag lists, I’m sure that you’re probably wondering what is in my bug out bag. Well, I’ll show you… below are photos of my bug out bag contents. Hopefully, the photos will help you or someone who you know put together your own bug out bag.

Light and fire starter items...

Light and fire starter items…

bug out bag first-aid kit

A bug out bag first-aid kit – note the Quickclot.

bug out bag radio

Small solar / crank AM AND FM radio. Dollar bill is for size comparison.

Bug out bag rope and snares

Tying, binding and snaring…

Bug out bag water purification

Water, Lifestraw, and Berkey Water Bottle with Filter.

bug out bag food items

Food items should be light weight, provide essential nutrients and be suitable for long-term storage of one year or more. I replace my bug out bag food every year…

Bug out bag kit

Personal hygiene items.

bug out bag cooking gear

Chow time. Don’t forget to include cooking and eating utensils in your bug out bag.

Bug out bag sewing kit

A sewing kit is a must in you bug out bag.

bug out bag cloths.

Bonnie hat, lightweight work gloves, extra socks, 8’x10′ tarp and head net…

bug out bag outdoor survival kit

Outdoor survival kit, compass, extra flashlight and batteries and camo compac.

Bug Out Bag Firearms for Hunting and Self-Defense

Most people will suggest a .22 caliber rifle, such as the Ruger 10/22 and this is a great choice. A .22 caliber rifle can take small game as well as larger game such as deer with proper shot placement.

Another advantage of having a .22 Long rifle is the relatively low noises when fired especially when using CB caps and the ability to be effectively silenced with a homemade sound suppressor aka “silencer”. Just remembered that such a device is illegal without proper government approval and will land you behind bars if caught, and is suggested here for a worst case scenario only or after you have gone through all of the legal hoops.

The downside of the .22 Long rifle round is the limited range, penetration and stopping power all of which limit the rounds effectiveness when used for self-defense. I suggest a backup handgun chambered for a cartridge suitable for self-defense. I would not go below a 9mm or 38 special and then us good expanding ammo.

Even with a 9mm and 38 special, you should seriously consider using only the +P rounds such as the 115 or 124-grain JHP +P in the 9 mm or 158-grain lead semi-wadcutter hollow point .38 Special +P for defensive purposes.

Your location would also determine weapons choice. For example, those bugging-out in grizzly country should definitely consider something more powerful than the aforementioned 9 mm or 38 special.

My first choice for protection against such large game would be a center-fire rifle chambered for 308 or larger. My second choice would be a magnum revolver with a 5.5″ to 7.5″ barrel chambered for .44 Magnum or larger.

It is wise to avoid any armed confrontation if possible. Trust me you are not a coward if you avoid the possibility of being shot or having to shoot someone else. You are not expendable – neither are the lives of your family or those in your bug out group. Those with the macho kill ‘em all attitudes will not last very long after the poop hit’s the fan.

With that being said, a semi-auto military style rifle should be considered especially if you are trying to get from an urban area to the country, where facing organized gangs or other threats attempting to block your exit could be a possibility.

An AR-15 with collapsible buttstock or folding stocked AK-47 (for compactness and concealability) could help get you out of a dangerous situation if pressed into one while taking up little space and not adding significant weight to your overall survival gear.

I hope that you’ve found this article on bug out bags, and bugging out useful and can put the information above to good use – please share this article with your friends and social media contacts.

Weapons For Home Defense and Foraging

Now That You Have Your Bug Out Bag Stocked With Food and Gear let’s talk a little more about weapons for self-defense and foraging.

In this part of this article, I’ll be talking about choosing the right firearms for self-defense, and for foraging. I’ll try to keep this as short and to the point as possible while still covering everything that you really need to know, in order to make an informed decision when buying and learning how to use those tools to feed yourself and your family.


No foraging arsenal would be complete without at least one shotgun. By simply changing shot loads or moving up to slugs the shotgun can be used to take every game and predatory animal in North America out to 100 yards. And let’s not forget that a pump-action or semi-auto shotgun loaded with buckshot or slugs makes an excellent self-defense tool, especially if the shooter knows how to use it to its maximum effectiveness.

The shotgun that you choose for foraging purposes need not be expensive; the simple single-shot break-action shotgun is an excellent tool when foraging for food, and best of all they can be bought new for under $200 in most areas, are light-weight and extremely rugged and reliable.

Add a carry sling and a way to carry some extra ammo (I like the Voodoo Tactical Shotgun Shell Ammo Pouch) and you’re ready to go foraging for small game, foul or even larger game if the opportunity should present itself.

Ammo selection will, of course, depend on what you’re hunting for; I like to keep several different types in my sling loops, where I can quickly get to it and change out one round for another if needed. Say for example; that I’m hunting rabbit, and happen to spot a deer in the distance, it’s a simple matter to quietly and quickly, switch from a chambered shot-shell (I like #6 shot for small game) to a rifled slug and effectively and humanely take the deer.

For self-defense purposes, I suggest a pump-action or semi-auto (I prefer the pump-action but there are also some good semi-autos available) shotgun in 12 gauge, however, for smaller shooters a 20 gauge will suffice.  There are so many great brands and models available that it would take several chapters to go into any detail on each, so I won’t waste your time doing that here.

Two of my favorite pump-action shotgun manufacturers are Remington and Mossberg, with my personal home-defense shotgun being a Mossberg model 590 with ghost ring sights and speed-fed stock. In my opinion, the Mossberg 590 is the best “out of the box” pump-action defensive shotgun available today.

.22 Rifles

No survival “arsenal” would be complete without at least one high-quality .22lr caliber rifle. Because there are literally, hundreds of quality brands and models available, I won’t take up your time by trying to go over the details of each one here, but I will instead mention several of my personal favorites.

My first choice for a semi-auto .22lr would be the Ruger 10/22 takedown model; this is essentially the same rifle as the super trusted and reliable standard 10/22 but with the ability to be taken apart for transport and storage.

My first choice for a bolt-action .22lr is the Ruger American .22lr with 18-inch barrel. It’s well made with fewer parts to break than a semi-auto, and I’ve found it to be more accurate out-of-the-box than any standard our-of-the-box semi auto .22lr that I’ve tested it against.

Another one of my favorite .22lr rifles is the Smith and Wesson MP 15/22, mine has been ultra-reliable after thousands of rounds, and is a perfect training tool for new shooters or for cheap live-fire practice for AR-15 owners. However, it’s not my first choice when small game hunting, the .22lr that most often accompanies me on small game hunts is the Ruger American .22lr mentioned above.

My first choice when adding an optical sight (scope) to a .22lr is the Nikon ProStaff Rimfire 4 x 32 Black Matte Riflescope. I’ve tried other cheaper (and a few more expensive) alternatives when scoping .22lr rifles and found the Nikon ProStaff to be the best option.

Centerfire Rifles

Here again, I’ll not waste your time by trying to cover 101 different manufacturers and models of centerfire rifles but will instead elaborate on my two of my personal favorites.

For hunting larger game in my area (Tennessee) I don’t need anything more powerful than a .308 win, however, if you live in grizzly and moose country then you may want to move up to something like a .338 magnum or similar to be sure of a clean and humane kill.

My first choice for a .308 semi auto is the Smith and Wesson M&P 10. The M&P 10 is built on an AR type platform with a standard 20 round magazine. I’ve found it to be a well-made, accurate and reliable rifle. It can be used for both hunting large game and as a main battle rifle, however, the current, 2015 price tag of over $1,600 will no doubt be a road block for many (I had to save for almost a year to afford it).

My first choice for a bolt-action .308 is the Ruger Gunsite Scout Rifle, but with a standard rear mounted optic sight instead of the forward mounted “scout” configuration.

All of my .308’s are topped with the Nikon ProStaff 3-9 x 40 Black Matte Riflescope (BDC) optics and also have backup standard iron sights and a sling. If you’re serious about using a rifle for the defense of your property and for hunting then please get a copy of “The Art of the Rifle” by the late Jeff Cooper, it’s a great book that is full of tips and advice that will help to increase your on target accuracy.


This is one of those subjects that I hate to even get into here and that I purposely, avoid discussing in public because it never ends well because nearly everyone has their favorite and are unwilling to consider anything else. I too have my own personal favorites, but I’m not like some and unwell to consider other alternatives if something was proven to be better, or just as good but at a better price.

So like we’ve already done above, instead of going into a hundred different manufacturers and models, I’ll simply, tell you my favorites that have proven to work for me after years of shooting, hunting, plinking, and competition.

Well, start with the .22lr – of which my favorite is the Browning Buckmark.  This is the top .22lr handgun made today, period. I’ve carried mine all over the forests of Appalachia and can shoot it accurately enough to make head-shots on cotton-tail rabbits at 50 yards.

I have no idea how many rounds that I’ve put through mine but it has to be ten-thousand or more and I’ve never had a failure that was not ammo related.

Another excellent .22lr handgun is the Beretta 21A Bobcat. The Bobcat isn’t ideal for small game hunting or self-defense, but it’s weight and compact size will allow you to have it on you at all times, and any handgun that you have with you is better that the one you left at home or back at camp because it was too large, heavy and inconvenient to carry.

I carry mine when I’m on the river fishing, camping, hunting ginseng or just working around the homestead, it’s weight and size make it easy to go armed at all times. The Israeli Mossad has proven the effectiveness of the .22lr as an offensive/defensive tool with its use of the Beretta 70 in .22lr. The Beretta 70 is also carried by Israeli Sky Marshals.

By far my favorite centerfire handguns are made by Glock, however, they’re not the only quality choice on the market, there are many different handgun manufacturers that products worth considering. The most important consideration is to purchase the handgun that fits your hand best. If the handgun fits your hand correctly, you’ll naturally shoot it more accurately.

Out of the Glock line up my favorite model is the Glock model 19. The Glock 19 is a medium-sized 9mm handgun that is the perfect size for open carry, in a belt holster, yet small enough to be carried comfortably concealed under summer clothes. Another plus is that the Glock 19 has a 15 round magazine capacity, which is comparable with other, larger and heavier 9mm handguns such as the Berretta 92.

When it comes to ammo choices and “stopping power” there are just as many opinions as there are for handgun choices, but my personal carry load in a 9mm round is the Corbon 115-grain +p. Ballistics for this round is close to those produced by the 357 magnums and it is a proven stopper according to both ballistic research and actual real-life use.

Air Rifles

Air rifles are often overlooked by survival planners and this is unfortunate because they have a lot to offer, with the most notable being the ability to quietly take small game out to approximately 35 yards.

However, to get this kind of performance from an air rifle you’re going to have to look past the $45 models like those often seen at Walmart, these don’t produce the energy or velocity that is needed to cleanly take small game. You’ll probably have to spend over $150 at current prices before getting one that will do take small game effectively.

My personal choice and the one that I’ve taken the most small-game with is the Benjamin Titan GP Nitro Piston .22 caliber air rifle. I’ve found the .22 caliber air rifles to provide much better on target effectiveness i.e. dropping small-game in their tracks, than those in .177.

The Benjamin Titan GP .22 caliber air rifle features a 19 inch fully rifled barrel and a muzzle brake, both with a nice looking deep blued steel finish. I also have a Ruger .177 caliber air rifle and comparatively the finish on both the metal and stock is much nicer on the Titan GP.

As with most air rifles of this type, the Titan GP has no iron sights but the rifle is grooved for mounting an optical sight. The addition of a good set of metal sights would greatly add to the overall functionality and dependability of the rifle.

But as a rule, I prefer all of my rifles to have the choice of iron sights, as well as scope-mounting with, see through mounts. Scopes can break, become fogged, lose zero etc., and the ability to quickly change from one sighting option to the other without losing the target aids greatly to the utility of any rifle.

The Titan GP features an ambidextrous thumb-hole stock with dual raised cheekpieces, and while well designed, I found the reach from the grip to the trigger to be a bit long. But, this would not be a problem for shooters with larger hands or longer fingers. Even with the longer reach to the trigger from the grip, I have no problem pulling the trigger or shooting the rifle.

The rifle also has a 2-stage adjustable trigger for fine tuning to the needs of each shooter; however, I found the factory setting to be very good for my needs so I left the settings as is. But, an adjustment is an option and a welcome addition that I’m sure many will find very useful.

One of the main selling points of the Benjamin Titan is the Nitro Piston system and a velocity of up to 950 FPS. The Nitro Piston offers several advantages over rifles with a metal mainspring system, such as smoother cocking, no spring fatigue, reduced vibration, functions well in cold weather and the Nitro Piston system is also much quieter.

In fact, the Titan is noticeably quieter than my other air rifles and is much quieter than my Ruger air rifle which is the loudest of the lot.

Bows, Arrows and Blow Guns

I’ve used blowguns for small game since I was in my early teens, and I can assure you that they’re not toys, far from it. In practiced hands (and lungs) the blowgun can be used very effectively, to take small game and are much more accurate and deadly than the slingshot.

There are currently three sizes of mass marketed blowguns in the U.S. one in .40 caliber, .50 caliber, and .625 caliber diameters.  Each has different advantages over the other, but I personally prefer the .40 caliber versions, because I’ve found that I can shoot them further with more accurately, and haven’t noted any difference in effectiveness when taking small game.

Fortunately, blowguns are priced so cheaply that you can buy several (or make your own) to see what works best for you. If you’re interested in finding out a wealth of information on blowguns, and how to make your own Michael Janich has an excellent book available to help you with that it’s called “Blowguns: The Breath Of Death” and covers everything blowgun related.

Another favorite weapon for foraging is the bow and arrow. In skilled hands the bow and arrow can be used to take both large and small game and like with the blowgun you can make your own. However, it’s likely that nothing that you can make in the home workshop will compare to the power and velocity of commercially manufactured compound and crossbows.

Bows are like handguns in that you should try out several before deciding what works best for you. Personally, I prefer a more traditional recurve bow with a 45-pound draw weight over a compound, but that’s a personal choice and only one that you can make after gaining experience.

Now Let’s Take a Look At Barter Items

What would you have to trade in a survival situation?

The first thing to consider is what items do people need and use every day, followed by will they need these items after a long-term disaster and if so will those items be readily available when the resupply lines are cut. If not, then would those items be easy to make from other common items?

These are the questions I asked when putting away my own barter items – those are included in the list below in no order.

1. Ammunition

While I don’t advocate bartering most ammo after a collapse simply because that ammo could be used against you. Stop and think about it, if a person needs to barter for ammo in the first weeks and months after a collapse then it’s evident that that person has not prepped and will need other stuff, stuff they figure that you now have and there is no guarantee that they won’t use the ammo that you traded them at a later date to kill you and take your preps for their own use.

The exception that I make with ammo for barter purposes is for shotgun ammo. I’ve stocked up a large amount (500 rounds) of 12 gauge bird shot in #6 and smaller shot sizes for barter purposes. Sure birdshot can kill someone, however, it’s low penetration and short range make it one of the least threatening ammo types that can be stocked up and used for barter purposes.

2. Water Filters

Fresh, clean drinking water will always be in demand and while storing water for barter might not be feasible for most people it’s easy and takes up little room to store water filters such as the life straw. The life straw is an excellent barter item, that is easy to store, has a long shelf-life and is small and lightweight meaning that 25 or more of these types of water filters can be stored in a small space life a military ammo can.

3. Garden Seed

Seed to grow food is one of the if the best barter items that you can have on hand post collapse. I store both non-hybrid seed as well as hybrid vegetable seed for barter. Seed is light-weight and inexpensive but will be worth more than gold to a survivor who is trying to barter for those seed after the balloon goes up. But, before, you go out and buy a bunch of seed for barter (or for your own use) do some research on what grows well in your local area. Another thing that I’ve done is print off copies of the PDF guide “Planting a Home Vegetable Garden” to handout when bartering with vegetable seed because most people have no idea how to plant a garden and this pamphlet will give them more confidence in their own ability to take the seed and grow food. This will help them to be successful as well as increase the perceived value of the seeds when you’re negotiating your barter deal.

4. Solar Panels and Rechargeable Batteries

Wow! Wipe that look off your face, I know what you’re thinking… solar panels… those are expensive and I can’t afford those for myself let alone stockpile enough for barter. Well, in some cases you would be correct, however, I’m not talking about expensive 200-watt panels, no not for barter,  what I’m talking about here is smaller solar chargers such as the C.Crane 11-in-1 Solar Battery Charger priced at $24.99 each or the SunJack Portable Solar Charger with a SunJack USB Battery Charger for Rechargeable AA/AAA Ni-Mh and Ni-Cd Batteries for under $60 dollars. You can also set up a charging center where people can bring you their batteries to charge and you use your solar set up to charge their batteries in exchange for goods.

5. First Aid Supplies

You could stock up on individual first-aid items such as bandages and gauze and while that’s a good idea, I’ve also stocked up on premade first-aid kits for barter. These kits can be bought for under $20 each now but post-collapse would be worth much, much more. Don’t forget about antibiotics – you can get antibiotics here and find out more about their use here. If you have medical skills (or someone in your group does) then those medical skills will be in high demand and can be bartered for just about anything that you need.

6. Skills

As mentioned above in item number five medical skills are and will continue to be in high demand after any major disaster especially a long-term disaster, however other skills will be in demand too. Skills such as carpentry, auto and shop mechanics, sewing, firearms repair etc will be in high demand and those skills can be bartered for goods that you need.  Don’t forget to put back the tools you’ll need to get the job done in the best, quickest and safest way possible.

7. Toilet Paper, Baby Diapers, and Tampons

Toilet paper, baby diapers, and tampons are always in demand will continue to be in the aftermath of both short-term and long-term disaster. Sure some folks might substitute toilet paper with something else like a cloth or even leaves if forced but toilet paper would be a luxury and preferred by nearly everyone and survivors would pay handsomely for that luxury post collapse. Same with tampons and pads. Baby diapers would also be needed and in demand – if you have a baby, plan to or someone in your prepper group has one then I suggest that you look into cloth diapers

8. Coffee, Tobacco, and Booze

Oh, my… need I say more. Most people have their vices and most of those vices involve one or all of the three. Bags of tobacco that have been vacuum sealed with give the longest shelf life. If you can brew your own booze then you and your product would be in high demand, but by so doing you would probably increase your chances of being robbed for your product so security and caution would be a top priority. Currently, there are laws regarding the brewing of booze, find out the laws in your state if this is something that you’re interested in learning and follow those now, but after a major collapse, they probably won’t be a whole lot of enforcement of those laws that are currently on the books.

9. Condoms

Yes, I said it… condoms, we all hate to have to use them but the consequences of not using them could be disastrous now but even more so post collapse (I have a whole section in my book dedicated to birth control). The best ones that I’ve used are the Crown Condoms and at only $15 per 100, they are a great investment for barter and for your own personal use post collapse. People will continue to have sex after a disaster and protection from pregnancy and STD’s will be needed and if you’re the person in your community with the condom stockpile for barter, you’ll be in the catbird seat.

10. Lighters and Matches

Lighters and matches for barter should be self-explanatory, but keep in mind that these like condoms and some of the other items mentioned above would most valuable for barter after a major long-term EOTWAWKI type of event.  Because we don’t know exactly what is going to happen or when it’s best to stockpile smaller amounts of many different barter items than a massive amount of only one or two items.  Before anyone sends an email telling me that matches have a short self-life, it should be noted that I have matches from over 15 years ago in a glass jar that still strike and burn just as well as the day I put them into storage. The key is to keep them dry and add a desiccant.

Defending Your Home and Survival Retreat

And Now Let’s Look at Ways To Defend Your Home/Retreat in a Worst Case Event.


OCOKA is a military term that stands for – Observation and fields of fire, Cover, and Concealment, Obstacles, Key Terrain, Avenues of Approach. When setting up retreat and home defenses OCOKA should always be kept in mind and each principle addressed. Following these five key principles, you will greatly improve your security and survivability. Let’s take a quick look at each in more detail.

Observation and Fields of Fire

You need to be able to see a potential threat at the earliest opportunity if you can see the threat early, and hopefully, before that threat see’s you, then you can make the correct decisions to either make contact, hide, or prepare to defend your area with force.

Can you observe all avenues of approach from your retreat? Do you have a full 360 degrees of view around your property? Are there areas that intruders could exploit to get close and possibly steal from, loot or attack you without being seen?

If forced could you fire upon an attacker from all angles without them being able to hide from view or without you possibly accidentally, shooting your neighbors or damaging key resources? If not then you need to get to work clearing obstacles that limit your view and ability to fire upon an attacker if you’re forced to do so.

Cover and Concealment

Cover is protection from bullets and concealment is something you can hide behind where an attacker cannot see you, but concealment offers no protection from gunfire. No matter what you’ve seen in the movies, car doors, kitchen tables, typical home entry doors, or the bed mattress isn’t cover and will not reliably protect you from being struck by bullets as they pass through.

If there isn’t any natural cover at your retreat, then you’ll need to get to work now constructing something that will protect you from bullets. You could build some decorative concrete or rock walls, tall raised flower or garden beds. These could provide effective cover and still allow your home to blend in with other homes around you and not look like a fortification.

It’s also a good idea to have a supply of sandbags on hand that can be filled with sand and/or dirt to provide an effective way to put up cover quickly in needed areas. Even unused trash cans that are filled with sand or dirt can work well if you have several to work with. Just remember that the area between the cans doesn’t provide effective cover, only concealment, no matter how closely that you push them together.


Obstacles are meant to slow or stop an attacker or to force him to go in a different direction either away from you or into a position where he is more vulnerable to you; preferably, into an area that offers him no means of cover or concealment.

One of the simplest and effective obstacles that you can put up is a fence. Don’t wait until a disaster; get to work putting up a fence now. It will increase your security and probably, your property value. The key, to success here, is to take a look around at the other houses in your area and note what types of fencing is already in use and put up a similar type around your property. The key is to blend in with everyone else; this will help you to avoid becoming a target.

Obstacles can also be used to stop vehicles from entering your property or neighborhood. For example falling several trees closely together in an interwoven pattern can be a very effective obstacle that can even stop tracked vehicles, if done correctly.

No matter how strong the obstacles that you put in place are given enough time an attacker can work through and remove that obstacle if given enough time by being unchallenged, meaning that key areas and avenues of approach should be blocked by obstacles and covered by observation – this will give you and your group early warning and time to escape or mount an offensive attack against the trespassers.

Key Terrain

Key Terrain is any piece of terrain that offers an advantage to whoever controls it. Think the high-ground. If you can take the high-ground it can drastically increase your observation and offer an advantage if your area comes under attack. Take control of and retain that key terrain, you don’t want a potential attacker to gain control of that area and be able to use it to watch you, or worse use it to attack you or your area. One lone sniper could use the advantage given by such key terrain to wipe out your entire family, group or community, with a few well-placed rifle shots.

Even if you’re in an urban area or the ground for miles under your feel is flat any taller than normal buildings can be viewed as key terrain or the high-ground. Control these and use to your advantage.

Avenues of Approach

This goes hand-in-hand with observation and fields of fire – look around and note the most likely avenues of approach that an intruder or attacker would take to reach you. Watch roads, pathways, waterways and open areas that lead up to your property, key terrain as mentioned above will offer a huge advantage here. And remember the father you can see the threat the better, the distance will also give you more time to decide what needs to be done and how to do it, depending on the threat presented.

OKOKA: Observation and fields of fire, Cover, and Concealment, Obstacles, Key Terrain, Avenues of Approach. Memorize it and use it when setting up your retreat defenses. Now let’s look at a few more key defensive strategies and points.

Staying Hidden

No doubt about it; the surest way to survive a fight is to avoid getting into one in the first place. Too many preppers have an offensive mindset when it comes to home and retreat defense. Sadly, many will suffer for it. Forget about the macho BS, there is no shame in hiding until a threat passes by, in fact, it’s the smart thing to do.

As a family, or small survival group you cannot afford to risk injuries or worse casualties because you let your ego driven Rambo fantasies to guide you into taking offensive action when it could have been avoided it. However, you should be ready to violently, defend your area and retreat if a confrontation cannot be avoided.

Combat Multipliers

A combat multiplier is anything that makes you and your group more effective or more difficult for an attacker to defeat. You should amass as many combat multipliers as possible now, before the time of need. You don’t want to wait until the marauders are coming through the window to start thinking about it, then it will be too late – don’t put off until tomorrow what should be done today, your life depends on it.

Things like knowing your terrain, improvised alarms, holding key terrain, having long-range weapons, night vision equipment, body armor, two-way radios, semi-automatic weapons, putting in obstacles or reinforcing natural ones, camouflage, mobility, trained guard dogs etc. are all combat multipliers and should be considered in your retreat defensive plans.

Funneling the Attack

Funneling the attack in the simplest terms means using roadblocks (both natural and man-made) to “guide the attacker(s) into a place of your choosing and where you have a definitive tactical advantage.

Ambush and the Element of Surprise

An ambush can be used as both an offensive and defensive tactical maneuver, for example, an ambush could be used to attack a convoy in an offensive maneuver outside of your perimeter, and also to defend against an attacker or attackers, that have entered your property or home. Hide and wait until the attackers have reached a predetermined position where they are most vulnerable, then spring the ambush.

An effective ambush doesn’t always mean shooting and killing those being ambushed, while gunfire is an option depending on the circumstances, you can also us an ambush to capture potential attackers and then make a decision on what to do with them after you’ve gained more knowledge through questioning or interrogation.

Early warning is a must

The sooner you know an intrusion is going to happen the better, time will allow you and your group to make a decision to stay and fight or make a speedy get-a-way. If you decide to stay and fight, early warning will hopefully allow you the time to get into the best possible defendable positions, or to plan an effective ambush.

Early warning for trespassers or attackers can come from a number of different options. For example; informants, lookouts placed in key locations that lead up to your retreat, dogs, motion activated lights, improved alarms, spot lights, security cameras etc.

It’s best not to rely on just one type of early warning device because it might be bypassed or could fail. For example, you could have a look out a mile or two away with a two-way radio overlooking a road or trail that leads into your location, and then improvised alarm devices a little further in, and then guard dogs on the outskirts and perimeter of your property or retreat location.

Layered Defense

You should divide your area into three layers of defense – the outer layer, intermediate layer and the inner layer. The outer layer could be the area as far as you can see out past your property line, the intermediate layer could be anywhere inside your property line and the inner layer would be your home. With each layer providing increasing levels of security and protection.

You will have a plan of action for each layer of defense. For example your outer layer could be a watch and report area only with no action being taken against anyone that wonders inside that layer – unless, of course, you know that they are planning to attack and loot you at your location, then defensive action could be taken to prevent them from ever reaching your second or third layer of defense.

Your second layer would probably be your property line; this would preferably be marked by a chained link or barbed wire fence. Anyone crossing into this area is probably up to no good and should be dealt with aggressively; the extent of your aggression will depend on the depth and length of the disaster.

Your third layer would be inside your home and in most cases, deadly force can and should be used here.

The key to an effective layered defense is for you and your group to know where each layer begins and ends and to have a predetermined plan of action for each layer when that layer has been breached, and to practice each scenario until it can be done effectively, even when you’re tired and hungry.


Misinformation is simply, leading anyone your group to believe something that you want them to believe that isn’t true. Let’s say for example that you know or suspect that someone or a group is listening in on your two-way radio communications, to gain Intel before they loot or steal from you. You can use this fact to your advantage, by feeding them false information via your two-way communications or through know informants.

For example; you could make them believe that your group is larger or better armed than you are or lead them to think you’re going to be in one place but in reality, you’re setting an ambush, or planning your escape. The key is to make it believable and have a workable plan where you can use their response to your false information to your tactical advantage.

False or misleading information could also be used to make your neighbors think that you are worse off than they are. For example; you could show up at their door begging for food, when in fact you have a well-stocked pantry. Just don’t be too aggressive by demanding that they share whatever they have with you because you might get shot if they mistake you as a threat.

Official looking signs can also be used to good effect when planting seeds of false information, for example; you could post official looking “Food and Water 5 Miles” with an arrow pointing down the road and away from your location. Use your imagination and I’m sure that you can come up with other ideas for signs that will mislead and confuse strangers that wander into your town or onto your property.

Defensive Positions

Most homes were not built to defeat gunfire and bullets will pass right through the walls and riddle anyone caught in between. It is best to defend your home from the outside where you have more visibility and mobility. This is where your early warning devices come into play, by knowing when someone is approaching your location but before they get there, you and your group have time to get into a defensive or ambush position.

Sandbags are very useful and effective when setting up defensive poisons that offer ballistic cover. They are cheap enough (or can be improvised) that you can stock up on hundreds of bags for under $100 and can be filled with sand or dirt that you dig up from your property.

Although; you don’t want to defend your home from the inside it’s still a good idea to build up the area around and near the windows with filled sandbags. This will offer cover if for some unfortunate reason you were surprised and trapped inside the structure.

Lining the area inside your pouch up to the railing with filled sandbags is also a good idea. This will offer a protected shooting position that can be occupied quickly if an attacker or trespasser were to get inside your second layer of defense before you have time to man your main defensive positions away from your main living structure.

Your main defensive positions should be set up in key locations around your property and can range from hardened pillbox type structures with thick reinforced concrete or rammed earth walls to simple spider holes, or a mixture of both.

Don’t look like an easy target

Don’t be an easy target, and even if you are, you can use misinformation to make would be looters or attackers think that you’re far stronger and better armed than you really are. If they think you are a hard target hopefully they will think that going up against you is not worth the risk and move on in search of an easier target.

OPSEC – Operational Security

We hear this all of the time in prepper and survivalist circles, OPSEC aka operational security and it is very important now and will be a major factor in keeping you and your group secure after the balloon goes up. The number one rule of OPSEC is to keep your mouth shut – everything should be done on a need-to-know basis and most people don’t need to know anything about what you and your group are doing.

A Plan of Retreat

No matter how well prepared or strong our defenses, we could be faced with a superior force that greatly outnumbers and outgun us, where staying and fighting would be suicidal. You need a plan of retreat, preferably, a way to retreat without being seen or confronted by the superior force. An escape tunnel from your home that leads to a hidden and safe evacuation point would be an idea. But most preppers don’t have the room or the resources to put such a plan and tunnels into place.

Again; this is where early two-way-radio warning lookouts and alarms can save your life. If you know a threat is approaching you have time to evaluate the threat and make a decision of whether to stay and fight or retreat. You should have a predetermined destination where everyone in your group knows to meet up if you’re forced from your retreat area.

Also having caches of first-aid, water, food and ammo along the way and at the safe location is a good idea. Get those into place now, before the time of need. Also, each member of your group should have an escape or “bug out bag” that can be quickly grabbed as the escape plan is being put into action.

I know many survivalists/preppers will resist the thought of retreating from their retreat, preferring to stay and fight even if defeat and death are certain. You know; take out as many of those SOB’s as possible before they take your location and while this is admirable, it isn’t the best decision.

The escape can be used to buy you time to get better organized and plan for a counter attack where you can ultimately, take your property back from the aggressors. I’ve talked to several preppers who have their main food caches hidden on their property while having a separate smaller cache out in the open for looters to find if they make it that far.

But the surprise is that those preppers have poisoned their “decoy cache” of food items ( I don’t advocate doing this but it is what some preppers are doing). So they plan to retreat, wait, then come back and remove the looters/attackers after they have died of the poison.

Top 10 Overlooked Survival Tips You Need To Know Today

Let’s face it: The world is a scary place to be living in right now. Many countries are dealing with serious political instability and the threat of terrorism; economic turmoil is pervasive worldwide; Dr. Margaret Chan, director general of the World Health Organization, has warned that antibiotic-resistance might “mean the end of modern medicine as we know it;” and then we still have to contend with good old-fashioned natural disasters like earthquakes and tsunamis. The potential for collapse is immense, but instead of worrying endlessly, what we should be doing is preparing to face whatever comes our way.


Ask a Prepper provides a comprehensive list of survival hacks that can be implemented ahead of time to cope with just about anything nature or humans might throw our way.

  1. Hide your valuables: While it might be a good idea to hide your valuables so that they can’t be stolen, it is equally as important to remember where you stashed them. A good idea would be to bury them somewhere in your garden and then take a photo of a family member standing in that spot. Put copies of the photo in the family bug out bags, and make sure everyone knows what they’re for.
  2. Improve your fitness: Any stressful situation calls for physical endurance, and there is always the possibility that you might have to carry injured people, the elderly or children to a place of safety. So, take the time now to get fit so that you’re up to the task when called upon. You’ll be protecting your health and longevity at the same time.
  3. Move to the ‘burbs: While convenience might make living in the city an attractive prospect, from a survival point of view it’s a really bad option. In any collapse situation cities become hotbeds of mayhem. Being in a safe area out in the suburbs will be far safer, and will likely save you money on your mortgage in the meantime!
  4. Rotate your survival foods: While stockpiling food is obviously essential, the problem lies in keeping it fresh and not wasting money on food that goes bad. An excellent suggestion is to keep taking food from one side of your shelf and replacing it with fresh cans or boxes on the other end of the shelf.
  5. Make sure you’ve got baking soda: Baking soda has a myriad of health benefits, and most importantly, in a survival scenario it will protect your dental health. All you need is to mix half a teaspoon of baking soda with half a teaspoon of water to form a paste, and then use it to brush your teeth. [RELATED: Discover the cancer-fighting properties of baking soda and lemon.]
  6. Learn about the trees and plants in your environment: Whether you’re making a rope, looking for drinkable sap or simply starting a fire, the plants and trees in your immediate surroundings are an invaluable resource. Start learning about what’s in your area now, and how best to utilize it in a time of need.
  7. Plan your escape: Everyone in your family should receive SERE (survival, evasion, resistance and escape) training, which involves learning when to rest, move and hide, among other things.
  8. Be ready to secure your person and property: Civil society quickly disintegrates into violent gangs in a collapse situation, so you need to be able to protect yourself and your family. Purchase things like bulletproof vests and barbed wire ahead of time for this purpose.
  9. Be careful who you tell: Don’t tell anyone anything they don’t need to know. Someone might inadvertently reveal important information about your plans, compromising your security. Even your family members should be informed on a “need-to-know” basis.
  10. Make sure everyone knows the escape plan: Since you never know where everyone might be in case of an emergency, every member of the family needs to know exactly where to meet, how to get there, and any other relevant information. Plan ahead and have family drills so you can be sure of exact time-frames.

We all hope we never to have to deal with a natural disaster or other collapse situation, but if you take the preparatory steps above, you will be in the best possible position to keep your family safe. [RELATED: For more tips like these see Bugout.news]