Homesteading and Survivalism

Ramblings Of A Bored Survivalist

Archive for August, 2011

Posting stuff on the internet

Posted by Kevin Felts On August 30, 2011 Comments Off

When you’re talking to someone in real life, words are like dust in the wind. But when you post stuff on the internet, its like etching your words in stone. The difference is, people can go back and read what you posted. Once your words are spread to the wind, they can not be retrieved,  [ Read More ]




Bug out location stove and grill

Posted by Kevin Felts On August 27, 2011 Comments Off

Bug out location stoveSome kind of disaster has happened, you and your family have moved to the bug out location, you open a #10 can of chili mac,,, and now what? What are your plans on cooking that the bug out location?

In other words, the SHTF, and now what? How do you plan on cooking at your bug out location?

In this article we are going to be looking at propane stoves, wood stoves, and wood grills.

Propane:

Propane is a short term answer to a long term problem. Propane has several advantages – it stores well, it burns clean, and propane has multiple uses.

Two of the main reasons why I like propane – it stores well, and it has a multiple of uses. I can buy the 2 pack of 1 pound propane bottles, store them at the camp, and the fuel never expires. Then there are the wide range of attachments for the bottles – lanterns, stoves and space heaters.

When the weather gets cold, my brother takes a small space heater to his deer stand. Go back a year later and the stove still works.

When we need some light outside, get a propane lantern.

Need to warm up a meal, get the propane stove out and cook something up.

At the camp we have a 250 gallon propane tank which is used to fuel the furnace and the stove. When the power goes out, we can light a couple of the burners on the stove, and we are able to heat just about the whole house with just a couple of burners going.

A buddy of mine has a 500 gallon propane tank that he plans on using for his generator.

Besides 1 pound propane bottles, 250 gallon and 500 gallon propane tanks, there are the 20 pound propane bottles.

Instead of using the 1 pound propane bottles, people can stockpile the 20 pound bottles, then get an adapter to power lanterns, stoves and other devices.




Hurricane survival tips

Posted by Kevin Felts On August 26, 2011 Comments Off

Hurricane SurvivalHaving been through Hurricanes Ike and Rita, evacuated for Hurricane Andrew, and having worked an evacuee shelter for Hurricane Katrina, I think I can offer some tips on Hurricanes.

* Have at least 1 week of food and water for every person in your group. The government says at least 3 days, but shoot for at least 5 – 7 days. Depending on how much debris is on the roads, it could take 3 days for the road crews to get the roads open.

Evacuate low lying areas. Storm surge is no myth, get away from low lying areas and areas prone to flooding.

LED flashlights are better then old style bulbed flashlights. LED flashlights are more reliable then lights with old style bulbs, and LEDs have longer battery life.

Buy lithium batteries. Lithiums last longer then alkaline batteries.

Buy LED flashlights with long battery life and low lumens for inside the house. This is not a tactical situation, anything over 50 lumens can mess up your night vision. As you walk around the inside of the house, you do not want to blind other people.

Have a way to cook, such as a camp stove, or propane grill. Nothing boost morale like a good hot meal.

Video about cooking with a Coleman Perfectflow stove.




Coleman PerfectFlow Grill review

Posted by Kevin Felts On August 26, 2011 Comments Off

Coleman perfectflow stoveThis article is a review of the Coleman PerfectFlow Insta Start Grill Stove. The unit has 2 names – “grill stove”, because there are 2 burners, 1 with a stove top and the other burner has a griddle.

Last christmas I added a Coleman instant start grill to my wishlist, and sure enough someone got it for me.

The reason why I picked the grill was because of the built in griddle. That way I did not have to worry about cleaning any pots and pans, just wipe the griddle down and the stove was cleaned up.

I liked the idea of using the griddle to cook more food then can fit in a typical skillet. With a cooking surface of 12 inches by 10 3/4 inches, a lot of bacon and/or sausage can fit on there. The plan was to use the stove top with a small skillet to cook eggs or make toast, and use the griddle to cook bacon, boudain or sausage.

Purpose:

The whole purpose of buying the stove was to have a propane stove that my family can bring on camping trip to the local parks. For camping on the river I have a small single burner stove, but the Coleman Perfectflow stove could also be brought out to the river on camping trips.

My wife and I keep a large plastic tote box filled with camping supplies. Instead of packing liquid fuel that can spill, we decided to get a propane stove.

But that is not the way things worked out.




Stockpiling beans and bullets

Posted by Kevin Felts On August 24, 2011 Comments Off

Cooking after SHTFLets say SHTF tomorrow, what would your survival gear stockpile look like? For a lot of survivalist it would be mostly beans and bullets – meaning now very much thought or attention to detail has been put into the plans.

When the SurvivalistBoards youtube channel was opened, I wanted to publish a wide range of videos. The plans were to post videos about everything from gardening to wilderness survival. There are certain topics that do better then others. It seems that fishing videos probably do the worst in view counts, and firearm videos do the best.

But to have a balanced channel and blog, I think one should cover a wide range of topics. It seems that example videos and articles work best. Instead of saying what people should do, I show people what I am doing, and end it with that. Then let the viewer make up their own mind.

How does all of this relate to stockpiling survival gear? When dealing with survivalism, I do not think its enough to just stockpile bullets and beans. A well rounded, long term SHTF survival plan, should cover as much information and resources as possible. It is not enough to buy a case of 7.62×39, store some rice and beans in mylar bags, and then proclaim you have a well rounded survival plan. Ammo, rice and beans are not a well rounded plan.

Lets look at a well rounded SHTF food plan:

SHTF Day 1

Cook the meat in the fridge and freezer
Plant a garden
Canned goods
MREs
Food in mylar bags – rice, beans, oats, other stuff
Harvest food from garden
#10 cans
Hunting
Fishing
Gathering wild edible plants

SHTF 6 months later – I plan on still being able to eat good.

If there is a failure in the plan, there should be a backup plan, and then a backup to the backup plan. I like having plans hat are at least 2 and sometimes 3 levels deep.

Video about stockpiling food, ammo and fishing supplies.




On the topic of fishing

Posted by Kevin Felts On August 22, 2011 Comments Off

Bass fishing southeast TexasIf you are looking for peace and quiet, few things can compare to fishing. Casting a lure or bait out into the water, and letting it sit, is about as close to nature that one can get.

Last weekend my wife and I went to Dam B to do some fishing. As I was casting off the bank, and bass followed my lure up to the bank and grabbed it just before it was supposed to go out of the water. It was so peaceful and natural, as the bass swam up to the lure and grabbed it. I wonder how many times that has been replayed over the past thousands of years.

The bass was pulled up, the hook was removed and the bass was released no worse for the wear. Maybe it will be a little wiser from its experience, but then again, maybe not.

If there is one thing that I like about fishing (besides catching something), it has to be being close to nature. When the boat is launched, and I head out on the water, there is a certain peace and clam that is over the water.

The water is pure, it knows no violence, it knows no anger, greed, envy, jealously, or hatred. The water is a friend to everyone, as it treats everyone the same.




Holy crap its hot

Posted by Kevin Felts On August 20, 2011 Comments Off

Lake Sam Rayburn 2001 Texas DroughtAnd not only is it hot, its dry. Its not that “oh, we did not get any rain in the past week” kinda dry, its like “we are in a SERIOUS kind of drought” type of dry.

Where is the rain?

Our lakes dry up, and no rain falls.

Our creeks dry up, and no rain falls.

Our crops wither away, and no rain falls.

Our tree sheds their leaves and start to die, and still no rain falls.

Back in February 2011 my kids and I went to the Bug Out Location and planted some trees. the trees included some oak trees, a plum tree and a peach tree. One of the oak trees had been grown from an oak that fell from the tree in my front yard. When the oak tree was planted, it might have been maybe 5 years old.

Over the past 6 months my family and I have been making trips to the camp to make sure the trees have been getting plenty of water. Well, over the past few weeks it looked like we had been getting some rain at the camp, so I did not bother checking on the trees. The problem is, the rain was a little of nothing.

August 20, 2011 my wife and I go to check on the trees, and they were in bad shape. Most of the leaves had turned brown and fallen off. There were a few green leaves, but not many. My wife and I put 2 gallons of water on the tree, waited about 30 – 45 minutes, and then put 2 more gallons on the tree.

Video about climate change and long term survival plans.




Calm before the panic buying

Posted by Kevin Felts On August 19, 2011 Comments Off

Calm before the SHTF panic stormThere is enough fear mongering these days without my help. With that in mind, please remember that this article is just my personal opinion and it not meant to interpreted as fact.

I feel that we are in a calm before the storm. Not necessarily a SHTF storm, but a panic buying storm.

From August until the first part of 2012:

August and September: Kids are starting back to school in the next few days, parents are having to buy back to school supplies, clothes, meet the teachers and get their kids shots caught up. Right “now” parents have a lot to think about and worry about besides prepping.

Labor day: is right around the corner.

October: Halloween in October.

October and November: Hunting season starts.

November – thanksgiving.

December – Christmas and then New Years.

People have stuff to keep their minds occupied until the first part of 2012. After the turn of the year, I look for people attention to turn towards world events and the direction this nation is going.

After new years I think is when the panic buying mode is going to kick in – and especially after people start getting their income taxes back.




Hunting season check list

Posted by Kevin Felts On August 17, 2011 Comments Off

Deer hunting DS Arms SA58 FN/FALRifle season here in Southeast Texas starts in about 2 1/2 months. As opening day inches ever closer, its time to start thinking about getting ready for the big day.

Check out the deer camp and make sure no vandals have tore anything up during the off season. Sometimes people will go to the camp and mess with stuff. One year a couple of sets of antlers were stolen, another year a shed was broke into and a chainsaw was stolen.

Scout the area where you want to hunt. With the drought this year, any place there is a waterhole will probably be a good location. There is a creek on the lease that almost always has water in it. I am thinking about setting up a ground blind on a hill that overlooks part of that creek. With the drought in its current state, I suspect anything that lives in the woods will be gathering around creeks that have water.

Oak trees – I am wondering how the drought is going to affect this years acorn crop. The oak tree in my front yard is loaded with small acorns, but they are dropping before they are mature. Its like the oak tree is stressed under the current drought.




Bug Out Bag Topics

Posted by Kevin Felts On August 16, 2011 0 Comments

Over the years I have seen one topic that has been repeated over and over, and that is the topic of the bug out bag.

In reality, a bug out bag should contain copies of important papers, house title, car title, insurance policies, change of clothes, snack, or even 2 – 3 days worth of food, change of clothes, phone number contact list, and any prescription medicines you might be taking. The list will vary depending on the person and what they want to bring with them.

People that live close to railroad tracks or chemical plants might be asked to flee their homes due to a chemical release accident. The bug out bag is for people to grab, run, and have some basic supplies with them.

In fantasy, the bug out bag will be used to bug out to the wilderness when society collapses.

This video pokes fun at the different viewpoints on bug out bags.




Storing food in mylar bags for SHTF

Posted by Kevin Felts On August 14, 2011 Comments Off

Storing food in mylar bags for SHTF survivalMy SHTF food preps include mylar bags, #10 cans, MREs and canned goods. In this article and video ware going to discuss making up 20 mylar bags of rice, beans, oatmeal,,,,, and various other items.

Awhile back I made up some homemade superpails of oats, rice and beans. I found the 5 gallon mylar bags difficult to work with and a little difficult to seal. After that experience I decided that the largest bag I was going to mess with was probably going to be around the 2 1/2 gallon size.

For my current project I decided to make up some 1/2 gallon and some 1 gallon mylar bags. Inside of the bags I am going to store oats, rice, beans, instant mashed potatoes,,, and a few other things.

Items to be stored in mylar bags:

2 – great value whole grain old fashioned oats, 42 ounce containers
4 – great value whole grain quick oats, 42 ounce containers
3 – great value elbows enriched macaroni product, 3 pound boxs
1 – hungry jack mashed potatoes, 26.7 ounce box
2 – great value mashed potatoes, 2 pound box
1 – 20 pound bag of rice
several – 1 pound bags of pinto beans




Field trip with nature class

Posted by Kevin Felts On August 13, 2011 Comments Off

Wilderness hikingContrary to popular belief, nature classes do not take their clothes off and run around naked in the woods. In fact its just the opposite. We keep our clothes on and drive to where we want to go.

Saturday morning the nature class that I am a member of did a field trip. The purpose of the field trip was to see some of the native and rare plants in the area, and to see some of the unique geological formations around the Jasper Texas area.

At 8:00am we met in the parking lot of the Stump restaurant on hwy 255, which is just north of Jasper Texas. The places where we were going to go were old logging roads. The people that drove cars parked their vehicles at a nearby hotel, then we carpooled in the 4 wheel drive trucks and SUVs.

The first place we stopped at was on top of a pipeline. We parked our trucks on top of the hill, then walked around the rim of the hill top looking at different types of trees and plants.

After we got finished looking at the plants, we went back to the trucks, over the hill and down to a creek bottom. The cool thing about the creek bottom, it was filled with petrified wood. There were small pieces, large pieces and medium sized pieces. One of the men in the group was an amateur geologist. He talked to the class about the different types of trees that grew in southeast Texas during the last ice age – white oak, pine (conifer trees) and palm trees.




Gun cleaning supplies at the bug out location

Posted by Kevin Felts On August 11, 2011 Comments Off

DS-Arms SA58 FN/FAL next to a river in southeast TexasThis evening I was cleaning my FN/FAL, at which time I realized my gun cleaning supplies at the bug out location were going through a can opener syndrome. The “can opener syndrome” is when someone overlooks the small items. That you might be so focused on buying #10 cans, that you forget to stockpile can openers.

With gun cleaning supplies, people are probably more focused on stockpiling ammo, and shooting their firearms, that the forget about buying cleaning supplies.

Lets list some simple gun cleaning items:

Storage Box – something to store the items in. In my case, I am using a large tackle box
Copper bore brushes – for scrubbing the inside of the barrel
Gun oil – I like the pump spray bottles
Hoppes #9 powder solvent
Bore light – I use an led light with a flex neck
Screw drivers
Cleaning rods – for pushing the bore brush through the barrel
Cloth patches




Stockpiling SHTF food ammo and fishing supplies

Posted by Kevin Felts On August 8, 2011 0 Comments

SHTF survival gear food and ammoLets talk about stockpiling food, ammo and fishing supplies for SHTF. These are the supplies that will be used to feed and protect your family if, or when, the SHTF. There is no perfect survival plan, and only the fool says otherwise. Its because of this admission that my plans have changed over the years.

My food stockpile has gone from simple stockpiling beans and rice plans, to something a little more complex.

In the ammunition category, my plans have gone from having various rounds stockpiled, to taking inventory, and trying to standardize my SHTF ammo stockpile.

The fishing category is where I am currently having the most fun. I have gone from just stockpiling fishing supplies to running trotlines and testing my fishing plans.

Stockpiling Food:

10 – 15 years ago I was stockpiling beans, rice, MREs, canned goods and some garden seed. My plans were to head to the bug out location, plant a garden, and hunt for fresh meat. It was a simple plan that had a lot of holes.

About 6 or 7 years ago I decided to focus more on gardening, and less on hunting. My family and I started planting fruit trees (peach, pear, apple, plum,,,) and I started stockpiling more garden seed. Then came along the drought of 2010 and 2011. In the past 2 years this part of Texas is at least 3 feet low on rainfall. Lake Sam Rayburn is about 9 feet low as of when this article was written. The long solution to a long term survival plan is having a self-sustaining farm and garden. In the face of global climate change getting a farm and garden up and running from scratch is going to be a little difficult.

About a year ago I decided to change my plans again and add mylar bags, and some homemade superpails to my SHTF food stockpile. So now we have mylar bags, MREs, canned goods, fruit trees and garden seeds. In the mylar bags I stored beans, rice, oats, pancake mix, pasta,,,, and a few other things.

In the face of climate change, my plans have changed yet again.

Instead of relying entirely on hunting for meat, and beans for protein, I decided its time to bite the bullet and start stockpiling #10 cans of freeze dried meats, fruit and certain vegetables.




Thinking about the 2011 – 2012 hunting season

Posted by Kevin Felts On August 2, 2011 Comments Off

east texas whitetail deerWe are on the final 3 month countdown to the start of hunting season here in Texas. Bow season starts in October, and rifle season starts the first weekend in November. How is the season going to turn out? I have no idea.

My new rifle, a DS Arms SA58 FN/FAL needs a scope. Even though the shots are only about 75 – 100 yards, in the late evening light the sights seem to just fade away. I thought about getting some tritium sights, but for the price of the tritium sights I could get a scope. If the price between the new sights and a scope is “about” the same, why not get a scope. Before I could mount a scope on my FN/FAL, first I had to install a new scope mount, which worked out well.

Hunting season is my favorite time of year, the weather turns off cool, we get a break from the Texas heat, bugs go away, leaves on the trees turn colors and fall to the ground.

There is just something about winter time that can not be described, the quiet and peacefulness of the woods and the wind blowing through the trees. Summer is nice, but I think winter has a certain beauty about it that summer can not touch.