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Apartment Dweller Prepping- Part 1, by AKM295

Precious metals, dehydrated food, bug out cabins, and surplus everything are some of things that may spring to mind, thanks to pop culture and the media, when you mention prepping to someone who isn’t familiar with the topic. Those were the things that I thought of too, when I first began looking into how I could be more prepared for an emergency or disaster I might face back when I was fresh out of college.

When I Moved To A Big City

Back when I was a naive graduate who moved to a big city with student debt on my back, one room in a small shared apartment to call home, and extremely limited resources, a lot of the information I was finding did not apply to me or my living situation. I’m not starting a homestead or prepping a house for a family. I was one guy in his … Continue reading

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Cold Weather Injuries

Working in a cold weather environment presents many new challenges as well as more dangers. Understanding and recognizing these dangers may save your life or the life of a family member or comrade.

Here are some Injuries and Conditions associated with working/living in a cold weather environment.

Types of Injuries

Chilblain

Definition:

Chilblain is a medical condition that is often confused with frostbite and trench foot. Chilblains are acral ulcers (that is, ulcers affecting the extremities) that occur when a predisposed individual is exposed to cold and humidity. The cold exposure damages capillary beds in the skin, which in turn can cause redness, itching, blisters, and inflammation. Chilblains are often idiopathic in origin but can be manifestations of serious medical conditions that need to be investigated. Chilblains can be prevented by keeping the feet and hands warm in cold weather. A history of chilblains is suggestive of a connective tissue disease. Full Story>>>

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Colds vs. Flus

When you wake up sneezing, coughing, and have that achy, feverish, can’t move a muscle feeling, how do you know whether you have cold symptoms or the flu?

It’s important to know the difference between flu and cold symptoms. A cold is a milder respiratory illness than the flu. While cold symptoms can make you feel bad for a few days, flu symptoms can make you feel quite ill for a few days to weeks. The flu can also result in serious health problems such as pneumonia and hospitalizations.

What are common cold symptoms?

Cold symptoms usually begin with a sore throat, which usually goes away after a day or two. Nasal symptoms, runny nose, and congestion follow, along with a cough by the fourth and fifth days. Fever is uncommon in adults, but a slight fever is possible. Children are more likely to have a fever with a cold.

With cold symptoms, the nose teems with watery nasal secretions for the first few days. Later, these become thicker and darker. Dark mucus is natural and does not usually mean you have developed a bacterial infection, such as a sinus infection.

Several hundred different viruses may cause your cold symptoms.

How long do cold symptoms last?

Cold symptoms usually last for about a week. During the first three days that you have cold symptoms, you are contagious. This means you can pass the cold to others, so stay home and get some much-needed rest.

If cold symptoms do not seem to be improving after a week, you may have a bacterial infection, which means you may need antibiotics.

Sometimes you may mistake cold symptoms for allergic rhinitis (hay fever) or a sinus infection. If cold symptoms begin quickly and are improving after a week, then it is usually a cold, not allergy. If your cold symptoms do not seem to be getting better after a week, check with your doctor to see if you have developed an allergy or sinusitis.

What are common flu symptoms?

Flu symptoms are usually more severe than cold symptoms and come on quickly. Symptoms of flu include sore throat, fever, headache, muscle aches and soreness, congestion, and cough. Swine flu in particular is also associated with vomiting and diarrhea.

Most flu symptoms gradually improve over two to five days, but it’s not uncommon to feel run down for a week or more. A common complication of the flu is pneumonia, particularly in the young, elderly, or people with lung or heart problems. If you notice shortness of breath, let your doctor know. Another common sign of pneumonia is fever that comes back after having been gone for a day or two.

Just like cold viruses, flu viruses enter your body through the mucous membranes of the nose, eyes, or mouth. Every time you touch your hand to one of these areas, you could be infecting yourself with a virus, which makes it very important to keep hands germ-free with frequent washing to prevent both flu and cold symptoms.

Is it flu or cold symptoms?

How do you know if you have flu or cold symptoms? Take your temperature, say many experts. Flu symptoms often mimic cold symptoms with nasal congestion, cough, aches, and malaise. But a common cold rarely has symptoms of fever above 101 degrees. With flu symptoms, you will probably have a fever initially with the flu virus and you will feel miserable. Body and muscle aches are also more common with the flu. This table can help determine if you have cold or flu symptoms.

SymptomsColdFlu
FeverSometimes, usually mildUsual; higher (100-102 F; occasionally higher, especially in young children); lasts 3 to 4 days
HeadacheOccasionallyCommon
General Aches, PainsSlightUsual; often severe
Fatigue,  WeaknessSometimesUsual; can last 2 to 3 weeks
Extreme ExhaustionNeverUsual; at the beginning of the illness
Stuffy NoseCommonSometimes
SneezingUsualSometimes
Sore ThroatCommonSometimes
Chest Discomfort, CoughMild to moderate; hacking coughCommon; can become severe
ComplicationSinus congestion; middle ear infectionSinusitis, bronchitis, ear infection, pneumonia; can be life-threatening
PreventionWash hands often; avoid close contact with anyone with a coldWash hands often; avoid close contact with anyone who has flu symptoms; get the annual flu vaccine
TreatmentDecongestants; pain reliever/fever reducer medicinesDecongestants, pain relievers, or fever reducers are available over the counter; over-the-counter cough and cold medicines should not be given to young children; prescription antiviral drugs for flu may be given in some cases; call your doctor for more information about treatment.

Usually, the time of year will give you some sense of what you’re dealing with. The standard flu season runs from fall to spring of the next year.

When do I call the doctor with flu or cold symptoms?

If you already have flu or cold symptoms, it’s important to call your doctor if you also have any of the following severe symptoms:

  • Persistent fever: A fever lasting more than three days can be a sign of another bacterial infection that should be treated.
  • Painful swallowing: Although a sore throat from a cold or flu can cause mild discomfort, severe pain could mean strep throat, which requires treatment by a doctor.
  • Persistent coughing: When a cough doesn’t go away after two or three weeks, it could be bronchitis, which may need an antibiotic. Postnasal drip or sinusitis can also result in a persistent cough. In addition, asthma is another cause of persistent coughing.
  • Persistent congestion and headaches: When colds and allergies cause congestion and blockage of sinus passages, they can lead to a sinus infection (sinusitis). If you have pain around the eyes and face with thick nasal discharge after a week, you may have a bacterial infection and possibly need an antibiotic. Most sinus infections, however, do not need an antibiotic.

In some cases, you may need to get emergency medical attention right away. In adults, signs of a crisis include:

  • Severe chest pain
  • Severe headache
  • Shortness of breath
  • Dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Persistent vomiting

In children, additional signs of an emergency are:

  • Difficulty breathing or rapid breathing
  • Bluish skin color
  • Not drinking enough fluids
  • Lethargy and failure to interact normally
  • Extreme irritability or distress
  • Symptoms that were improving and then suddenly worsen
  • Fever with a rash

Can I prevent flu or cold symptoms?

The most important prevention measure for preventing colds and flu is frequent hand washing. Hand washing by rubbing the hands with warm soapy water for at least 20 seconds helps to slough germs off the skin.

In addition to hand washing to prevent flu or cold symptoms, you can also get a flu vaccine to prevent seasonal influenza. Seasonal flu activity in the United States generally peaks between late December and early March. Within two weeks of getting a flu vaccine, antibodies develop in the body and provide protection against flu. Children receiving the vaccine for the first time need two doses delivered one month apart.

Antiviral medicine may also help prevent flu if you have been exposed to someone with flu symptoms.

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Some Good Comes from Hawaii’s False Alarm.

Hawaii Emergency Alert test
Hawaii Emergency Test Photo: NYdailytimes.com

Residence of Hawaii had a wake up call and many in the press and government are calling this delayed warning a horrible event, but I disagree.

Chairman of the FCC Ajit Paisaid

“The false emergency alert sent yesterday in Hawaii was absolutely unacceptable,” the chairman said. “It caused a wave of panic across the state — worsened by the 38-minute delay before a correction alert was issued.”

Pai added the false alerts, believed to have been caused by human error, “undermine public confidence in the alerting system and thus reduce their effectiveness during real emergencies.”

I contend, “Why shouldn’t we keep people on their toes?”  Reports that people were “freaking out” and in a state of “panic”, can lead to some good and people may realise that to live their lives in a “Daily Fog” or “LaLa Land”, can lead to being unprepared for a real emergency.  It is time to think about the possibilities of a real disaster or attack.

Have we grown so complacent in our world, that we get upset at a false alarm, when this in fact is a real world reality check.  Wake up and recognize that we live in a modern world that has forgotten that disaster and strife can affect us.

SHTFandGO – Plan, Prepare, Protect

 

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Using Essential Oils As Medical Tools

For the person who is concerned about long-term survival scenarios, a hard reality is that stored pharmaceuticals will run out over time. This leaves them with only natural options, such as the plants that grow in their own backyard. These were used with skill by our ancestors, who had little else to treat sickness and injury.

While teas are the simplest way to utilize your medicinal herbs, many swear by essential oils as a storage option with other medical supplies. These items have much more longevity than fresh plants and can include those that don’t naturally grow in the area.

An essential oil is distilled from whole plant material, not a single ingredient; therefore, each one has multiple compounds that might be medically useful. To take an example, English lavender has about 20 different chemicals, including esters, ketones, and terpenes. These combinations make each oil unique. Oils may be produced from leaves, bark, flowers, resin, fruit or roots. For example, Lemon oil comes from the peel, Lavender oil from flowers, and Cinnamon oil from bark.

Although you might not realize it, you’ve been using essential oils all your life in soaps, furniture polishes, perfumes, and ointments. Previous generations of conventional physicians commonly included them in their medical bags. Indeed, many standard medical texts of the past were really instruction manuals on how to use these products.

Essential oils aren’t easy to produce without distillery equipment. Although it only takes a few leaves of peppermint to make a tea, you would need 5 pounds of leaves to make 1 ounce of essential oil. One source states that it takes an entire acre of peppermint to produce just 12 pounds of oil. The same source says that 12,000 rose blossoms are required to produce a tablespoon of rose oil. These concentrated versions are the ones you see marketed in small, dark bottles. Unless you intend to buy distilling materials, you should accumulate essential oils in quantity but use them sparingly.

The strength or quality of the oil is dependent on multiple factors, including soil conditions, season harvested, subspecies of plant, rainfall, and, in some cases, even the time of day. This is akin to the conditions that determine the quality of a particular vintage of wine. It also explains the significant variance you’ll see in the effects of the same oil from year to year.

You might be surprised to learn that the Food and Drug Administration only requires 10% essential oil in the bottle for it to be marketed as “Pure Essential Oil”. Beware of claims of FDA certification; the FDA has no certification or approval process for these products.

Making Essential Oils

The manufacture of essential oils, known as “extraction”, can be achieved by various methods:

Distillation Method: Using a “still” like old-time moonshiners, water is boiled through an amount of plant material to produce a steam that travels through cooled coils. This steam condenses into a “mixture” of oil and water from which the oil can be extracted

Pressing Method: The oils of citrus fruit can be isolated by a technique which involves putting the peels through a “press”. This works well only with the oiliest of plant materials, such as orange skins.

Maceration Method: a fixed oil (sometimes called “carrier” oil) or lard may be combined with the plant part and exposed to the sun over time, causing the fixed oil to become infused with the plant “essence”. Oftentimes, a heat source is used to move the process along. The plant material may be added several times during the process to manufacture stronger versions. This is the method by which you obtain products such as “garlic-infused olive oil”. A similar process using flowers is referred to as “Enfleurage”.

Solvent Method: Alcohol and other solvents may be used on some plant parts, usually flowers, to release the essential oil in a multi-step process.

As each essential oil has different chemical compounds in it, it stands to reason that the medicinal benefits are also different. An entire alternative medical discipline has developed to find the appropriate oil for the condition that needs treatment. The method of treatment may differ, as well. Common methods are:

1) Inhalation Therapy: This method is also known as “aroma- therapy”. The simplest  way to perform direct inhalation therapy involves putting 2 or 3 drops of essential oil on your hands, rubbing them together, and inhaling.

Steam inhalation therapy utilizes the addition of a few drops of the essential oil in a bowl of steaming water (distilled or sterilized), which is then inhaled. This method is most effective when placing a towel over your head to catch the vapors.

Many people will place essential oils in potpourri or use a “diffuser” to spread the aroma throughout the room. This technique probably dilutes any medicinal effects, however.

2) Topical Application: The skin is an amazing absorbent surface, and using essential oils by direct application is a popular method of administration. The oil may be used as part of a massage, or directly placed on the skin to achieve a therapeutic effect on a rash or aching muscle.

It’s wise to always test for allergic reactions before using an essential oil in this manner: Even though the chemical compounds in the oil are natural, you could still exhibit an allergy to it or be irritated by it (case in point: poison ivy).

A simple test involves placing a couple of drops on the inside of your forearm with a cotton applicator. Within 12-24 hours, you’ll notice redness and itching if you’re allergic. Mixing some of the essential oil with a “carrier” oil such as olive oil before use is a safer option for topical use. Another concern, mostly with citrus oils applied to the skin, is “phototoxicity” (an exaggerated burn response to sun exposure).

Although we have seen many sources recommend applying essential oil over the location of an internal organ, some reservations exist about whether such an application will really have an effect on that organ. It is much more likely to work on skin issues or, perhaps, underlying muscle tissue.

3) Ingestion: Direct ingestion is unwise for many essential oils, and this method should be used with caution. Professional guidance is imperative when considering this method, except for a very few instances. A reasonable alternative to consider is a tea made with the dried herb. This is a safer mode of internal use, but the effect may not be as strong.

Hard Data

Essential oils have been used as medical treatment for a very long time, but it’s difficult to provide definitive evidence of their effectiveness for several reasons. Essential oils are difficult to standardize, due to variance in the quality of the product based on soil conditions, time of year, and other factors that we mentioned above.

In addition, there are many subspecies of plants that may differ in their effects. An essential oil of Eucalyptus, for example, may be obtained from Eucalyptus Globulus or Eucalyptus Radiata; these plants may have their own unique properties. These factors combine to make scientific study problematic.

In most university experiments, a major effort is made to be certain that the substance tested caused the results obtained. As essential oils have a number of different compounds and are often marketed as blends, which ingredient was the cause of the effect? If the oil is applied with massage, was the effect related to the oil itself or from the physical therapy?

The majority of studies on essential oils have been conducted by the cosmetics and food industries. Others have been conducted by individuals or small companies with a vested interest in the product.

Definitive studies of possible medicinal benefits are usually performed in universities sponsored by the pharmaceutical industry. Unfortunately, they generally have little interest in herbal products because they are hard to patent. Therefore, serious funding is hard to find because of the limited profit potential.

Commonly Used Essential Oils

Despite the lack of hard data, essential oils have various reported beneficial effects, mainly based on their historical use on thousands of patients by generations of healers. Although there are many essential oils, a number of them are considered mainstays of any herbal medicine cabinet. Here are some of the most popular:

Lavender Oil: An analgesic (pain reliever), antiseptic, and immune stimulant. It is thought to be good for skin care and to pro- mote healing, especially in burns, bruises, scrapes, acne, rashes and bug bites. Lavender has a calming effect and is used for insomnia, stress and depression. It has been reported effective as a decongestant through steam inhalation. Lavender oil may have benefit as an antifungal agent, and has been used for athlete’s foot or other related conditions.

Eucalyptus Oil: An antiseptic, antiviral, and decongestant (also an excellent insect repellent), Eucalyptus oil has a “cooling” effect on skin. It aids with respiratory issues and is thought to boost the immune system. Consider its use for flus, colds, sore throats, coughs, sinusitis, bronchitis, and hay fever. Eucalyptus may be used in massages, steam inhalation, and as a bath additive. Although eucalyptus oil has been used in cough medicine, it is likely greatly diluted and should not be ingested in pure form.

Melaleuca (Tea Tree) Oil: Diluted in a carrier oil such as coconut, Tea Tree oil may be good for athlete’s foot, acne, skin wounds, and even insect bites. In the garden, Tea Tree oil is a reasonable organic method of pest control. In inhalation therapy, it is reported to help relieve respiratory congestion. Studies have been performed which find it effective against both Staphylococcus and fungal infections. Some even recommend a few drops in a pint of water for use as a vaginal douche to treat yeast. Tea Tree oil may be toxic if ingested or used in high concentrations, around sensitive areas like the eyes.

Peppermint Oil: This oil is said to have various therapeutic effects: antiseptic, antibacterial, decongestant, and anti-emetic (stops vomiting). Peppermint oil is claimed to help for digestive disorders when applied directly to the abdomen. Some herbalists prescribe Peppermint for headache; massage a drop or two to the temples as needed. For achy muscles or painful joints, massage the diluted oil externally onto the affected area. As mentioned previously, definitive proof of topical application effects on deep organs is difficult to find.

Lemon Oil: Used for many years as a surface disinfectant, it is often found in furniture cleaners. Many seem to think that this disinfecting action makes it good for sterilizing water, but there is no evidence that it is as effective as any of the standard methods, such as boiling. Lemon oil is thought to have a calming effect; some businesses claim to have better results from their employees when they use it as aromatherapy. Don’t apply this oil on the skin if you will be exposed to the sun that day, due to increased likelihood of burns.

Clove Oil: Although thought to have multiple uses as an anti-fungal, antiseptic, antiviral, analgesic, and sedative, Clove oil particularly shines as an anesthetic and antimicrobial. It is marketed as “Eugenol” to dentists throughout the world as a natural painkiller for toothaches. A toothpaste can be made by combining clove oil and baking soda. When mixed with zinc oxide powder, it makes a temporary cement for lost fillings and loose crowns. Use Clove oil with caution, however, as it may have an irritant effect on the gums if too much is applied.

Arnica Oil: Arnica oil is used as a topical agent for muscle injuries and aches. Thought to be analgesic and anti-inflammatory, it is found in a number of sports ointments. As a personal aside, we have tested this oil on ourselves and found it to be effective, though not very long lasting. Frequent application would be needed for long term relief. Although some essential oils are used as aromatherapy, Arnica oil is toxic if inhaled.

Chamomile Oil: There are at least two versions of Chamomile oil, Roman and German. Roman Chamomile is a watery oil, while German Chamomile seems more viscous. Both are used to treat skin conditions such as eczema as well as irritations due to allergies. Chamomile oil is thought to decrease gastrointestinal inflammation and irritation, and is thought have a calming effect as aromatherapy, especially in children.

Geranium Oil: Although variable in its effects based on the species of plant used, Geranium oil is reported to inhibit the production of sebum in the skin, and may be helpful in controlling acne. Some believe that it also may have hemostatic (blood-clotting) properties, and is often recommended for bleeding from small cuts and bruising. When a small amount of oil is diluted in shampoo, it may be considered a treatment for head lice.

Helichrysum Oil: Thought to be a strong analgesic and anti-inflammatory, Helichrysum is used to treat arthritis, tendinitis, carpal tunnel syndrome, and fibromyalgia as part of massage therapy. It has also been offered as a treatment for chronic skin irritation

Rosemary Oil: Represented as having multiple uses as an antibacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-parasitic, Rosemary oil is proven to control spider mites in gardens. Use a few drops with water for a disinfectant mouthwash. Inhalation, either cold or steamed, may relieve congested or constricted respiration. Mixed with a carrier oil, it is used to treat tension headaches and muscle aches

Clary Sage Oil: One of the various chemical constituents of Clary Sage has a composition similar to estrogen. It has been used to treat menstrual irregularities, premenstrual syndrome, and other hormonal issues. Sage is also believed to have a mild anticoagulant effect, and may have some use as a blood thinner. Clary Sage also is thought to have some sedative effect, and has been used as a sleep aid.

Neem Oil: With over 150 chemical ingredients, the Neem tree is called “the village pharmacy” in its native India. Many Ayurvedic alternative remedies have some form of Neem oil in them. Proven as a natural organic pesticide, we personally use Neem Oil in our garden. Reported medicinal benefits are too numerous to list here and seem to cover just about every organ system. It should be noted, however, that it may be toxic when the oil is taken internally.

Wintergreen Oil: A source of natural salicylates, Wintergreen oil is a proven anticoagulant and analgesic. About 1 fluid ounce of Wintergreen Oil is the equivalent of 171 aspirin tablets if ingested, so use extreme caution. It may also have beneficial effects on intestinal spasms and might reduce elevated blood pressures.

Frankincense Oil: One of the earliest documented essential oils, evidence of its use goes back 5000 years to ancient Egypt. Catholics will recognize it as the incense used during religious ceremonies. Studies from Johns Hopkins and Hebrew Universities state that Frankincense relieves anxiety and depression in mice (we’re unsure how, exactly, this was determined, but it probably involved a cat). Direct application of the oil may have antibacterial and antifungal properties, and is thought to be helpful for wound healing. As a cold or steam inhalant, it is some- times used for lung and nasal congestion.

Blue Tansy Oil: Helpful in the garden as a companion plant for organic pest control, Blue Tansy is sometimes planted along with potatoes and other vegetables. The oil has been used for years to treat intestinal worms and other parasites. One of its constituents, Camphor, is used in medicinal chest rubs and ointments. In the past, it has been used in certain dental procedures as an antibacterial.

Oregano Oil: An antiseptic, oregano oil has been used in the past as an antibacterial agent. It should be noted that Oregano oil is derived from a different species of the plant than the Oregano used in cooking. One of the minority of essential oils that are safe to ingest, it is thought to be helpful in calming stomach upset, and may help relieve sore throats. Its antibacterial action leads some to use the oil in topical applications on skin infections when diluted with a carrier oil. Oregano Oil may reduce the body’s ability to absorb iron, so consider an iron supplement if you use this regularly.

Thyme Oil: Reported to have significant antimicrobial action, diluted Thyme oil is used to cure skin infections, and may be helpful for ringworm and athlete’s foot. Thyme is sometimes used to reduce intestinal cramps in massage therapy. As inhalation therapy, it may loosen congestion from upper respiratory infections.

“Thieves’ Oil”: Many essential oils are marketed as blends, such as “Thieves’ Oil”. This is a combination of clove, lemon, cinnamon bark, eucalyptus, and rosemary essential oils. Touted to treat a broad variety of ailments, studies at Weber State University indicate a good success rate in killing airborne viruses and bacteria. Of course, the more elements in the mixture, the higher chance for adverse reactions, such as phototoxicity.

I’m sure I missed some of your favorites. There are as many oils as there are species of plants.

Some important caveats to the above list should be stated here. Many of the essential oils listed are unsafe to use in pregnancy, and some may even cause miscarriage. Also, allergic reactions to essential oils, especially on the skin, are not uncommon; use the allergy test we described earlier before starting regular topical applications.

Even though essential oils are natural substances, they may interact with medicines that you may regularly take or have adverse effects on chronic illness such as liver disease, epilepsy, or high blood pressure. Thorough research is required to determine whether a particular essential oil is safe to use.

Having said that, essential oils are a viable option for many conditions. Anyone interested in maintaining their family’s well-being, especially off the grid, should regard them as another weapon in the medical arsenal. Learn about them with an open mind, but maintain a healthy skepticism especially about “cure-all” claims.

Essential Oils As Medical Tools

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46 Earthquakes Have Shaken California Over The Past 24 Hours

 

It appears that something unusual is happening along the California coastline.  Over the past 24 hours, California has been hit by 46 earthquakes.  That is approximately twice the normal daily number, and much of the shaking has taken place in the southern part of the state.  In recent weeks I have been writing repeatedly about the alarming seismic activity that we have been seeing along the west coast, and many believe that the potential for a megaquake is significantly higher than normal right now.  Unfortunately, most residents of California are not paying any attention to what is going on at all, and so if there is a major event they will be completely blindsided by it.

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Taking the Past and Use it To Prepare for the Future

As preppers we are always trying to figure out the perfect combination of living simply, while taking advantage of today’s technology. There is quite a bit we can learn from how people lived a century ago. If an EMP, CME or something else took down the power grid, we could easily find ourselves in that type of situation.

In the early 1900’s, unless you lived in the big city, or had big money, you probably didn’t have refrigeration (1930’s), electricity, running water, automobiles, or grocery stores. While we try to become more self-reliant just in case, back then it wasn’t a choice…it was a necessity.

Life was simpler in the early 1900’s. The population was smaller, there was less technology, and nearly half the population were farmers. The typical family size (or household) was bigger out of necessity, their diets were different, and transportation was walking, horses and a few cars.

Because of all this, most people were a lot less dependent on others for their survival. In today’s society, people have become dependent on technology, and others for their survival. This is why if the power grid went down, 90% of the population would not exist.

 Preparing For the Future By Learning From the Past

In order to give ourselves the best chance possible to live through a larger grid down event, or even just get through a smaller power outage, we need to learn how they did it 100 years ago. We don’t necessarily need to live like they did 100 years ago, or go back to the old west, but we need to learn how they did.

Lessons We Can Learn

Preparedness is about marrying the new with the old. We have the technology to harness solar power and communicate (ham radio) so why not use it. What we don’t want to do is be dependent on water coming from the faucet, food being at the grocery store, and the light coming on at the flip of a switch.

The basics of preparedness are pretty simple. The gadgets and trinkets are great, but won’t save your life. When it comes to any sort of disaster or SHTF scenario, life will be different, like it or not. We all try to do things today that will make life easier then, but we need to learn to live differently, and learning from the past is a good way to do that.

The 6 areas of preparedness

The 6 areas of preparedness, and how we can prepare in each of those categories. By taking the knowledge and supplies we have today, and coupling them with how they lived in the past, we can make life much easier when and if something goes down.

Were are a few topics we covered in the show…

Food

Liberty Gardens: Most people in the early 1900’s gardened to one extent or the other. During WW1 people began to plant Liberty Gardens. This was to help feed the soldiers, and also because most of the farmers were sent off to war.

Cooking From Scratch: Cooking from scratch was a necessity. There was no pancake mix, hamburger helper or Campbell’s soup. If people wanted beef stew, they had to make it from scratch.

Ranching: Just like gardening, a lot of people owned livestock in the 1900’s. This may not been a full fledged “Ranch”, but quite a few people had cows, chickens and goats.

Hunting/Trapping: Hunting was a little easier back then because there were more animals, but just about everyone who didn’t live in the big city knew how to hunt at an early age.

Food Preservation: Because you had to grow your own crops, and hunt your own meat, preserving your food was also important. canning, smoking, dehydrating and root cellars were widely used.

Water

Water Safety: Cholera and Typhoid are nearly non existent in the United States today, but that wasn’t the case 100 years ago. Today we have much more knowledge about clean drinking water, and this is one of the most important parts of preparedness.

Wells: If you lived in the city you might have indoor plumbing, but in the outskirts you were on your own. This meant people needed to dig wells, live close to a water source, and bring it into the house manually.

No Indoor Plumbing: If you lived in an Urban area, you might have had indoor plumbing. If you didn’t, you would have used used chamber pots or outhouses. This would be a huge culture shock to most people if the indoor plumbing didn’t work.

Shelter

No Handymen: While everything back then was a lot simpler (easier to fix), DIY projects weren’t projects…they were necessity. There was no “Angie’s List” back then, and if you wanted something done, you did it yourself.

Clothing: We think of shelter as a roof over our head, but clothing is also shelter. Most people back then didn’t have a closet full of clothes like we do. A lot of people has Sunday Clothes, and Work Cloths. There were no clothing stores like we think of them, so if you wanted something new, you made it, or waited for it.

Houses: If you drive through an older town you will notice that the houses are much smaller, even the “Mansions” back then are smaller than some suburban homes these days. Smaller homes are easier to heat, easier to build, and the average household occupancy was larger back then.

Security

Police: They didn’t have the police force that we have today, and the police couldn’t communicate like they do today. This meant that is something were to happen, you were probably on your own.

Culture: People had a different mentality back then. People we more self reliant, and didn’t like to depend on someone else for their livelihood or survival. These days it’s almost the exact opposite, most people expect (and feel entitled to) help from others.

Crime: The population was about a third of what it is today, and less population meant less crime. Because the society and culture were so different than it is today, you didn’t see some of the things we see today. Everyone pretty much knew everyone in smaller town, and sometimes criminals didn’t “get their day in court” if you know what I mean.

Sanitation

Supplies: Back then people didn’t have vacuums (or even carpet), air filters, or Swiffer Sweepers. The mops and brooms they used were very basic, and sometimes homemade.

Cleaning: Today it seems like we have never ending choices about what cleaning supplies we can buy, back than that was not the case. Cleaning supplies are a sometimes overlooked prepping supply, but are very important in preventing sickness and infection.

Indoor Plumbing: As I mentioned earlier, a lot of people did not have indoor plumbing, and this is what lead to many of the common diseases back then. It’s important that we learn about how they did things back then, and not make the same mistakes.

Trash Removal: People back then didn’t generate the amount of trash that we do today, but trash can also lead to health issues. In a SHTF scenario I doubt that the trash man will be coming around, so we need to figure out a solution.

First Aid (Medical)

Technology: The advancements we have made in science and technology would seem like magic to people in the 1900’s. If you’ve ever seen some of the equipment they used back then, you know what I mean. Medical professionals not only have better equipment, but better knowledge as well.

Medicine: Advancements is medicine have also come a long way in the last 100 years. With the advent of antibiotics, diseases and infections that would be fatal then, can be treated today. We have written a few articles about antibiotics for preppers.

Medical Help: Back then there weren’t hospitals like we think of then today, no flight for life, and no ambulances. Most towns had a town doctor with his doctor bag, and which probably had some Opium, snake oil and Heroin in it.

Incorporating Today’s Tools With Yesterday’s Skills

If we learn how people lived 100 years ago we can better prepare for any sort of grid down event, or SHTF event. We have much more knowledge and technology today than they had back then, but some of that technology may not be available.

By looking at all the topics covered above, and trying to figure out a solution for each, we can give ourselves a little better chance for survival, or at the very least, a little normalcy in a tough situation.

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Winter is Coming, Time to Prepare

11 Survival Essentials For Winter Driving And To Have In Your Car

Emergencies can happen any time – that’s why having a stash of these 11 survival essentials for winter driving in your car is very important. These items could save you from a miserable, possibly even life threatening experience on the road.

Pay attention to the local weather forecast or if traveling watch the Weather Channel and keep track of your planned route.

If bad weather is expected ask yourself this question, Is this trip really essential? Life or death essential? Consider rescheduling your trip.

1. Water. Store the water bottles inside a box or a bag so it will take a longer time to freeze.

2. Food. When picking out which type of food to store, look for MREs or other items which are high in protein like survival bars and jerky. This will provide you the needed energy if you have to hike to somewhere.

3. Fire starters. Any type of fire starter will do but if you opt to use matches, make sure to bring the waterproof variety.

4. Blankets. If you’re stuck on the side of the road in the winter, you need to stay warm.

5. Flares or reflective triangle. So that you or your vehicle are less likely to get hit at the side of the road in the dark.

6. Shovel. If you’re in a region where you car could get stuck in deep snow it would always be a good idea to bring a shovel whenever you decide to drive during winter.

7. Gloves. Always keep your hands warm with a good pair of gloves. You will need your hands to be in their best condition if you expect to be doing work out in the cold.

8. Light. Keep a good flashlight handy and make sure the batteries are charged or fresh.

9. First aid kit. Accidents happen, and you can’t just stand by and be helpless. Having a first aid kit will permit you to help yourself or your passengers before medical aid arrives.

10. Communications. You need to have a device with you to allow you to call for help in case you get stuck somewhere. So keep your cell phone or ham radio charged always and in the vehicle with you.

11. Spare tire, jack and tire iron. This is applicable ALL the time. Always have a spare and tools in the car in case of a flat tire.

Winter will present a number of challenges for both you and your car so always be prepared for the cold. Before setting out, check your vehicle’s hoses, belts, spark plugs, fluid levels, tires, filters, etc. to make sure that everything is working well. Practice extra control when driving on an icy road and if you do skid, stay calm. Keep it together if ever you find yourself in a situation where you are stranded and make use of the essential tools in your trunk.

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What Will Be Valuable in an Economic Collapse

What Will Be Valuable in an Economic Collapse

what will be valuable in an economic collapse

 

The value or price of something is always determined by the supply vs. demand.  In an economic collapse, the supply of many items will be greatly reduced which in turn will increase the price.  So in this post, we are going to discuss what will be valuable in an economic collapse.

An economic collapse will slow down the flow of commerce and trade.  We will see importing and exporting from and to countries will drop rapidly.  The busy highways of semi-trucks hauling goods will come to a screeching halt.

So the demand for those items will increase as they become harder to get during a collapse.  Along with that, the demand for other goods which was relatively low before the collapse will then skyrocket.  For an example, gardening tools will be highly demanded in an economic collapse because many will turn to growing their own food during this time.As a prepper, we not only want to survive during an economic collapse but more importantly thrive.  To thrive means to flourish or prosper.  I don’t know about you but I don’t want to be barely getting by day to day after an economic collapse.  This is will already be a stressful situation.  In order to prevent that then we need to start preparing now.  This is why it is important to get an understanding of what will be valuable in an economic collapse.

What will be valuable in an economic collapse?

Water and purification systems

Oil will no longer be the liquid gold during an economic collapse.  Instead, the demand for oil will probably decrease as many are laid off or lose jobs.  People will stop traveling for leisure or business.

Instead, water, especially drinking water, will be highly sought after.  Many grocery and convenience stores will go out of business during an economic collapse.  The stores that remain open will become bare of goods.

American’s specifically, have become mostly urbanized in the last hundred years.  We are no longer taught to be self-sufficient with our own sources of water.  Instead, we mostly rely on city water.  This isn’t always safe to drink and tastes horrible.

In a collapse, I believe that many water systems across the country will shut down.  As a result, many city slickers will be searching and scavenging looking for water.  Along with that, the need for purification systems will increase.  Collecting city water has a lot of health risks with it.  This risk is much higher than rural water collection.

Therefore, many will be turning to natural sources of water and seeking to become self-sufficient.  As a prepper, it is important to have our own sources of water in order to multiply our survivability.

As I mention in the book, if you don’t currently have your own source of water then there needs to be a strategic plan to one day attain it.  In meantime, if you are in a collapse without your own source of water then you will be forced to collect from other sources.  So having a collapsible water bag can be super helpful.  It is lightweight and easy to carry.

You will also need ways to purify your water with water filters and purification tablets.  At the time of this writing, you find some for a reasonable price.  After a collapse, the price will skyrocket.  I would recommend purchasing some of these items to barter or sell during the collapse.  You can make a decent profit and thrive during such an event.

Food

Food is another important item of survival.  You can only survive 3 weeks without food.  However, during a collapse, I wouldn’t recommend bartering or selling your emergency food storage.

Our society is so used to having food quickly.  There are fast food restaurants on almost every corner.  Then we have microwaves to provide us with a dinner in only a few minutes.

During a collapse, this convenience will hardly exist.  This is along with many grocery and convenience stores shutting down.  Food will become scarce.

Since you are not able to plant and reap a garden overnight there will be a lot of looting for survival items such as food.  So you will need to have your emergency food stored securely.

In order to really thrive, I recommend growing and raising your own food now.  Now, this can be used to barter or sell during a collapse.  Not only that but it will increase your survivability by becoming more self-sufficient.

Land

Piggybacking off of the previous point is that you will need land in order to grow a garden.  Trying to find private land for a reasonable price during an economic collapse will be challenging.  This is especially true if you are jobless and can’t afford it.

This is why it is important to find private land now.  It is easier said than done, I know.  Most preppers are on a very low budget.  However, it’s not impossible.  There are many websites like Landwatch where you can find owner financed land.  So if you can’t afford to get a loan through a bank then this can be a reasonable option for you.

Shelter

Having a fortified shelter on the land that you own will increase your survivability a ton.  Having a shelter helps you to survive rough weather conditions.  It also protects you from other outside threats like looters.

If you don’t own a home during an economic collapse then there is a high chance that you can be forced out.  Many property owners will fall behind on mortgage payments.  This could force them to sell the property to pay off the loan.  The other option is that they can jack your rent sky high forcing you to become homeless.

This is why it is important for preppers to get out of debt and purchase their own land and property.  In order to do so, we must prepare on a strict budget.  We must also put together a strategic plan now so that you are not forced to bug out.  Again, I talk about how to put together a bugout proof plan on a budget in The Strategic Prepper eBook.

Another option to have are tents or shelter systems.  A low-cost way of having a shelter is to learn how to bushcraft a shelter.  Such survival skills are one of the many prepper skills that will be imperative to have during a collapse.

Not only are they important for you to have but they will be valuable bartering items during a collapse.  So you could stock up on shelters or you could produce your own to barter.  You can typically find tarps for about $10 that can be used for shelter.

Warm Clothing

Yes, a shelter does provide protection from weather elements.  However, you can’t be cooped up in your shelter all the time.  You will need to go out to gather, hunt or work your garden.

So if you live up north then you will be facing extreme weather conditions.  Therefore you will need to have 3 specific layers to stay warm.  Those three layers include the base layer, insulation layer, and shell layer.

The base layer is designed to wick moisture from your sweating body to prevent hypothermia.  The insulation layer is designed to trap your body heat to keep you warm.  The shell layer is designed to block the outside cold from penetrating your body.

 

Hand tools

Hand tools at this moment are already a wise investment to have.  So in an economic collapse, they will be so much more valuable.  This is because you most likely won’t be able to call on maintenance to come fix things at your location.  Instead, you will be forced to become self-sufficient and fix items yourself.

Ammunition and firearms

In order to keep your shelter fortified you will need some security systems in place.  One of the few security layers that you should have include ammunition and firearms.  This will be more important than ever to have since violent crime will skyrocket.  People will be willing to kill others just for some canned food.

On top of that, there will probably be government takeovers or foreign invasions.  Either way, they could do some serious harm with the amount of firepower that they have.  Now, I’m not saying that you should stock up on AR 15s to fight off the government.

Because they have tanks and drones that can demolish you.  You don’t stand a chance.  So you will need to choose your battles wisely.

With that being said, many other people will be looking to defend themselves during this time.  People will be willing to pay high prices in order to protect themselves.  The price for ammunition will at least quadruple during a collapse.

Emergency items and medication

With so much violence going on during an economic collapse it will be important to have emergency items like first aid kits.  Along with that antibiotics will be in high demand to fight off infections.  Most likely hospitals will run through or be taken over.  Therefore it is important to have your own medical emergency supply.  You could also stock up on these items to barter or sell.

Addictive items

In an economic collapse, it will be a hard struggle for those that are addicted to things like alcohol, caffeine, and tobacco.  It will be especially hard for those that are addicted to illegal drugs.  Many will go to great lengths and pay higher prices to attain those items.

I don’t know about you but I need my coffee.  Without my morning coffee, you wouldn’t want to speak with me.

During a collapse, I know that it is going to be especially challenging.  There are many people just like me that will need or want their caffeine fix.

Now I’m not saying that you should stockpile on illegal items.  Instead, focus on those that won’t land you behind bars.  You can find cheap alcohol, coffee, and cigarettes.  These will be highly valued during a collapse.

Precious metals

During past economic collapses and financial crisis, we have seen inflation skyrocket.  This means the value of the paper dollar will become worthless.  Stores and other traders will begin rejecting the dollar.

Coincidentally the value of precious metals stays consistent with the rise of inflation.  Precious metals hold tangible value compared to the fiat currency.  There are many uses of silver that keeps the demand for silver so high.  This is one of the many reasons preppers should have silver.

On top of that, silver has always been recognized as a symbol of currency across thousands of years.  When the dollar collapses then many will return to using silver as currency.

Now those that are struggling for survival during a collapse would probably care less about purchasing precious metals.  They will be focused mainly on survival items such as food and water.  However, in order to purchase those items at the store, you will need to provide something of value.

Junk silver will most likely be the most recognized form of currency during a collapse.  Most stores and those that deal with money on a daily basis understand the real value of junk coins.  These coins contain 90% silver.  Therefore it represents value.

There are a few ways to collect junk silver. First, you should look through your change drawer to find quarters and dimes that were produced before 1965.  You could also exchange dollars at a local change machine to see if you can find some.  If those options don’t work then I would recommend checking out SD Bullion where I get most of my silver.

The great thing about SD Bullion is that they don’t require a $100 minimum order.  Most bullion companies require a $100 minimum order.  Instead, I take about $20 to $30 of each paycheck to buy silver bullion.  You don’t have to go broke trying to prepare for such a situation.

Altogether these would be my suggestions on what will be valuable in an economic collapse.  If you have suggestions or feedback then please leave it in the comment section below.  Your feedback helps the community prepare the smart way now so that we can thrive later.

 

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How To Plan Your Survival Group

How-To-Plan-Your-Survival-Group

How To Plan Your Survival Group

How To Plan Your Survival Group
Source: The Division

Are you a lone wolf or do you believe there are still capable people around you? Starting a survival group makes sense in today’s political situation and social climate. You could make it on your own, but survival is much easier within a group of people. Here is what you can do to for your own survival group and make it work.

As preppers, we must understand that we are not special and we cannot do everything to keep things in order. Is just not possible and you can’t be a hunter and a medic at the same time. There are tasks which require the help of your fellow neighbors and projects are done much faster when you have the numbers. Not to mention that surviving alone is not ideal and it takes a toll on your mindset over time. We are social creatures, and we evolved by sticking together and helping each other.

Seeking out like-minded people should be the first step in establishing a survival group. The number of preppers is increasing year after year, and we are no longer being seen as the “odd” members of society. While certain TV shows are twisting the reality of prepping, the increasing natural disaster in the U.S. made people realize that preparing for an emergency is just, and should be common sense.

The essential steps to planning a survival group

Self-assess

Before you ask what others can do for the survival group, you should ask yourself what you can do for it. You should become a valuable member and show others what you can bring to the table. Maybe you are trained in self-defense, maybe you have medical training, or maybe you are bushcraft master. All your skills should be brought forward, and you should never sell yourself short. It may look like you’re showing off at first, but it’s not a popularity contest.

You should also consider your psychical condition. Some people can spend a lot of times outside, exploring the great outdoors, while others require medication to get through the day. Even if some members have certain limitations, that doesn’t mean they are less worthy to be part of your survival group.

Be honest with yourself and don’t assume you can do more than you are capable. The point here is to become an efficient member of the survival group and be fair to others while acknowledging your own limitations.

Start building and expand

When people think about forming a survival group, they start with close friends and neighbors. Before you reach out to them, you should look closer to home. Your family is your immediate survival group, and you need to take them into account. Your kids and elderly parents have capabilities that can be put to good use. They can offer assistance with your prepping plans, and they can learn or teach you skills which you lack.

When the group evolves, each individual’s qualities should be assessed, and roles need to be assigned accordingly. An elderly person may not be able to do more than cook or see after the kids, but it still makes a huge difference.

Seek others in your proximity to expand the group. The group could be a few houses around your block or even a subdivision of a suburban neighborhood. Keep everything inside your survival group since once it is formed, it will not be open to outsiders.

Make sure to pick a leader

An effective survival group is an organized one. You can’t have order without an overall leader with a second in command. Most survival groups will choose people with clear leadership ability, perhaps military or law enforcement. However, the other roles in the group can be filled by anyone. Even more, they should teach their job to others so that the group can still function in case some member is lost.

Check if you have all the needed skillsets

You should identify all the skillsets available in your survival group since not everything you may need is in your geographical area. Chances are you may need to extend your area of action, in case your team needs a profession that is hard to find. You may need a doctor, a mechanic or a farmer/gardener and there’s no guarantee you will find one in your neighborhood. In an efficient group, you will find people who can do more than one job. The more skills you have in the group, the better.

Do a field test

There’s no point to having a good array of skills if you don’t practice and evolve them. Plan a weekend outing with your survival group and test their skills. A camping trip or gathering at someone’s house outside of town is an ideal scenario.

You can even do it in your neighborhood and gather at a member’s house. Turn off the utilities and see how everyone is coping with privation. You can even establish a perimeter around the house and post guard during the gathering. It will help you practice your skills in a less stressful environment before the brown stuff hits the fan.

Stockpile resources

Since you cannot predict the future and precisely establish how long a disruption may last, the goal will be to plan up to one year’s duration. Your survival group will need all the basics to survive during that time. Water, food, clothing, tools, medicine, communication gear, weapons, and ammunition are all a must for each member of the group.

You can help each other by sharing tips and information about your prepping plans. If there’s an ammo sale or if a nearby farm has a surplus of produce, you could save money, and everyone from your survival group will be prepared.

The good thing about having access to a variety of resources is that you can trade for the things you need or those you want. Bartering inside your group is much safer than having to deal with outsiders. A smart prepper will always accumulate extra supplies for use in barter.

Establish a territory

Depending on how the survival group is formed, and the skillset it has, you may need to establish a bug-in territory. This may be your own house or a city block, whatever works and can be protected without putting everyone in danger. You also need to plan a bug-out scenario, since you may be forced to relocate to a place in the country if a natural disaster destroys your neighborhood. This will require transportation vehicles for both people and resources and a well-established transportation plan. Not everyone from the group will agree to leave everything behind when the time comes.

If you establish a bug-in location, you should patrol the area around your territory. You will need to maintain awareness of local activities and keep everyone informed in case something happens. Depending on your region, you can either display a weapon openly or keep a low profile. Once it hits the fan, everyone approaching your territory must be stopped before entering your perimeter. All the talking and interrogation should be done outside that perimeter. They may be scouting the location, or they may carry infectious diseases. You also need to keep an open mind since some of the people approaching you may just need to barter, or they seek aid. You need to establish a protocol on how to handle outsiders and stick to it.

Everyone should be ready at any time

They should acquire basic proficiency with firearms, and they should have their resources organized. Training together will help everyone from your group since you learn much faster by doing rather than reading or talking about it. If the order is given to evacuate, you can’t waste time because some members can’t find their bug out bags or they misplaced certain resources. Your escape and evasion load should always be ready, and everyone should follow an established bug out timeline.

Ideally, everyone should have similar items in their bags so that each group member can go to any pack for support in an emergency. This is especially useful when it comes to firearms and ammunition since you can’t share ammo which is useless for your caliber.

Organization and fluidity are the main characteristics of an efficient survival group. You can’t use an electric vehicle as a common resource if you don’t have a method of charging it. You shouldn’t pack food that needs cooking if your bug out plan doesn’t include a resting or camping spot. These are all things that can be discussed and members need to communicate to identify flaws which can jeopardize the integrity of your survival group. There’s no shame in asking for advice and people should trust each other.

A last word

As I said before, immediate survival groups are forming inside families, and it seems this trend is growing. People are starting to show interest more and more to prepping and they are discussing with their neighbors about how to prepare better. I believe this year is a wake-up call for many out there and we can no longer ignore the natural disasters happening in our backyard. Forming a survival group will help you survive and learn how to prepare for a short or long-term disaster.

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How to Cure Your Shooting Accuracy Illness

How to cure your shooting Accuracy Illness

How to Cure Your Shooting Accuracy Illnesses

The first step to overcoming shooting woes is to start from scratch and examine everything with your shooting platform and technique. Eliminating bad habits and building new ones, or returning to your old form, takes patience and time. (Photo: Josh Dahlke)

Your shooting health has been strong for years, but suddenly and unexpectedly it has deteriorated into a bad case of “accuritis.” What’s the cure for this mysterious condition? Starting with a clean slate is just what the doctor ordered.

A string of bad shooting recently plagued me, and I couldn’t allow this infection to spread into deer season. I took a hard look at all of the complex factors that could have caused my accuracy slump, but I arrogantly overlooked the rookie stuff. There was only one thing to do: Throw everything out the window and start from scratch with some of the simplest, yet most critical shooting fundamentals.

You must first trust in your rifle platform. Start at the bench to eliminate human error and ensure your rifle/optic/ammo combination is producing predictable results. A bench is also a great place to review the critical mechanics of both your tool and its master. It’s marvelous that a calculated explosion can send a fine-tuned piece of metal spinning out of a short tube at upwards of 3,000 fps. When you’re conscious of this magical process, you realize the key to accurately deliver a bullet downrange is letting the rifle do its job with minimal human interference.

Now’s your chance to focus on the most influential shooting fundamental: trigger control. Close your eyes and dry-fire your rifle at the bench. Find the most comfortable position for your finger on the trigger that allows you to press it backward in a perfectly straight line, parallel with the rifle’s stock, until the trigger breaks. Every trigger feels different — weight, contour, cycle — but the motion of your finger should be repeatable and consistent across virtually every rifle’s trigger.

GET A GRIP
There are a handful of factors that will greatly determine your grip, but “consistency” is again the keyword. The first gripping consideration lies in the design of your rifle’s stock. It should fit in your hands comfortably atthefore-endandthegripatthebutt end closest to the trigger.

Tightness of your grip shouldn’t differ greatly from rifle to rifle. If recoil is a flinching concern, here are three solutions: shoot a caliber in your comfort zone; mount a scope with adequate eye relief; get solid contact between the stock and your shoulder. Too tight of a grip will hinder accuracy because muscle tension is always inconsistent, plus you run the risk of forcing the stock against the barrel and disrupting the barrel’s natural harmonics with the bullet.

FIELD TESTING
Practicing shots from realistic field positions is extremely important — that’s why you’ve heard this lesson preached hundreds of times. But let’s take this lesson a step further. Learn how to shift your body to get the most stability from every position: standing, sitting, prone and kneeling. The more contact your body has with the ground or other stationary objects, the more stable your shooting platform.

Here’s where a hunting pack can be a tremendous aid. Aside from haul- ing gear, you can use your pack to support the fore-end of your rifle in the prone position. You can also lean into your pack from the sitting position to eliminate wobbling of your core. The weight of a pack on your back will also keep you steadier in the standing position, which is usually the most unstable of all field shooting positions.

THE BRAIN GAME
Of all factors that influence the accuracy of a rifle, your brain can be the most detrimental. If you can’t maintain composure during the moment of truth, everything can quickly fall apart. Choose a shooting sequence and stick to it. Everyone’s routine is slightly different, but here’s an example: find a rest, grip your rifle, establish solid cheek weld, aim, turn off safety, exhale, squeeze trigger, cycle new round into chamber while maintaining sight on target.

Learn your limits and respect them. If you can’t consistently fire 300-yard shots on the range with certain accuracy, don’t expect any superpowers to activate in the field. Over-thinking your shot can also spell shooting doom. Once you’ve decided to kill an animal, focus on your shooting sequence and nothing else. If your instincts led you to bearing down on your rifle in the first place, odds are you’ll be thrilled with what’s lying at the end of the blood trail

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Survival Bracelet – The One Accessory That Can Save Your Life

Survival Bracelet with compass and fire starter

Survival Bracelet – The One Accessory That Can Save Your Life

Survival Bracelet

There are few fashion accessories that can save your life. Survival watches, survival belts are two that come to mind but there’s one survival accessory I like even more.

The mighty survival bracelet.

Survival bracelets are usually made from paracord and they include useful survival tools.

But survival bracelets have only recently gained popularity for civilians. While the military’s been issuing paracord survival bracelets for a very long time.

Why? Since it’s invention in WWII, paracord has proven to be insanely useful for survival. And for the military, that means on the battlefield.

Paracord is also included in astronaut gear list – you know, the one NASA sends into space!

So survival bracelets are worthwhile, but there’s an overwhelming number of them on the market today.

Some survival bracelets are standard, basic, and to the point. While others come equipped with an array of survival tools packed into them. Becoming a miniature survival kit by themselves.

So today, to help wade through the sea of options, we’ll cover a few of the highest rated survival bracelets. We’ll also suggest a few we like best and are most effective for survival.

But investing in a survival bracelet is just the first step, you also need to understand how to use one.

So I’ll also discuss how to make your own survival bracelets from scratch and some of the many survival uses for paracord.

The Magic of Paracord


Before we dive in, let’s take a second to admire paracord, the material most survival bracelets are made from.

Paracord was initially called “parachute cord.” It’s a high-tensile strength nylon cord and made its first appearance in World War II. It was designed to hold together paratroopers’ parachutes.

It’s invention allowed for a whole new type of airborne warfare.

Suddenly, paratroopers were leaping out of planes over war-torn Europe. Trusting their lives with the nylon parachute cord that held together their chutes.

Even after the paratroopers landed, they found lots of new uses for the material.

It became a common practice to strip the parachute of its paracord cord after landing, for later use.

Since then, it’s become standard issue for soldiers in the US army often knotted into a survival bracelet!

It’s a high utility survival accessory that can be easily accessed when you need it.

As mentioned, NASA also uses paracord. They now include paracord in their extensive cargo list. A list that only consists of the lightest weight and most useful materials known to man.

It’s good enough to make the list for survival in space. It was even used on a mission to the Hubble Space Telescope to make improvised repairs!

Paracord is badass stuff. And it’s a great addition to your bug-out-bag, get home bag, or survival pack, even if you’re not into wearing it as a bracelet.

Paracord Bracelet

The Best Survival Bracelets


Your looking for the “best” survival bracelet and the good news is there are a lot of options to choose from. Here are a few of the highest rated survival bracelets, along with our notable favorites:

Military Outdoor Survival Bracelet With Firestarter

MilitOutdoor Paracord BraceletThis slick wrist accessory comes with 10 feet of 500 lb tensile strength green paracord. But it also comes with:

  • a small compass
  • survival whistle
  • an emergency knife
  • a stainless steel fire scraper
  • and a flint flare starter

Being able to use your survival bracelet to start a fire, navigate, and signal for help are critical skills in a desperate situation. Not to mention all the paracord and a knife to cut it into segments

Leatherman Tread Bracelet

Unlike most of the other survival bracelets on this list, this one doesn’t use paracord. It uses stainless steel “tread” pieces, that can be adjusted, so the bracelet fits any wrist.

That’s not the only difference this model offers. Also unlike other survival bracelets, this one is a mechanical toolbox for your wrist.

It includes:

  • a host of box-wrenches
  • both flat and Phillip’s head screwdrivers
  • an oxygen tank wrench
  • a socket drive adapter
  • bottle opener
  • SIM card “pick”
  • carbide glass breaker
  • and a cutting hook

While this bracelet may not be ideal for wilderness survival, it’s a reliable accessory for urban survival.

If you’re out riding a 4-wheeler or dirt bike or need to fix a radio this type of survival bracelet is your best option.

Friendly Swede Survival Bracelet With Firestarter

The Friendly Swede Survival BraceletIf you want an “all-in-one” bracelet that packs tons of survival gear into a wrist accessory – this option is for you. There isn’t much they left out of this survival package.

  • fishing line
  • fishing hooks
  • sinkers and bobbers
  • fire starting materials
  • safety pins
  • and a small blade

These are just a few of the many resources wrapped up in this survival bracelet with a firestarter.

If you find yourself lost in the wild, there isn’t a better bracelet to have on hand – because this one has it all!

TITAN Paracord Survival Bracelet

Titan Survival BraceletWhile the rest of the survival bracelets here are multi-tools, this is the most basic one that made the list. But don’t let its simplicity fool you.

Most military personnel don’t wear high tech, expensive bracelets with 30- different tools. Instead, they go for simplicity.

Paracord is so versatile and has so many survival uses; it’s considered a multi-tool by itself.

The TITAN paracord bracelet is made with a stainless steel bow shackle clasp. A secure clasp that can hold up to 1,650 static pounds of weight.

Bonus Offer – Free Patriot Paracord Bracelet

patriot paracord

The final survival bracelet I want to point out is the Patriot Survival Bracelet. It’s got many of the same features as the survival bracelets we already covered.

It includes 10 feet of high strength 550 paracord, as well as a built-in survival whistle and a reflective signaling plate.

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5 Essential Winter Survival Skills

By  October 12, 2017

Winter is one of the perfect seasons to have fun when it comes to outdoor adventure. The best experience of hiking, mountain climbing, skiing, snowboarding, and much more could be gotten during the winter. But do you know that during the winter the condition is more extreme? The cold temperature that winter brings can result in frostbite or hypothermia.

Unfortunately, anybody can face survival circumstances during the cold season. When there is a threat to your life, you will need to cope with the survival situations. Let us take a look at some situations. What would you do if your buddy hit their head on a tree while skiing down the backcountry route? What would you do if a thick piece of falling ice removes your belayer?  Or what would you do if your winter clothes and footwear such as snowboard boots are soaked when you fall through an ice ledge on a river?

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