Homesteading and Survivalism

Ramblings Of A Bored Survivalist

Archive for September, 2011

Assassination of Anwar al-Awlaki

Posted by Kevin Felts On September 30, 2011 0 Comments

Since when is it ok to kill US citizens without due process? With the assassination of Anwar al-Awlaki, I guess its open hunting season on people who speak out against the US Government.

Where do we draw the line?

Was Anwar al-Awlaki on the street shooting people? No, he was not. He was on the internet, talking. Since when is talking a crime? I thought political speech was protected for US citizens? Maybe freedom of political speech is only protected when its not “too” critical of the government.

Maybe the government has a sliding scale to judge if someone is “too” radical. If the person scores high in the scale, they will be put to death like a rabid dog? Who gets to make the scale? Who gets to determine who lives and who dies.

Whats next, the government shooting people for voting third party? How about arresting bloggers for telling people to resist the government? Is the army going to get called out on #occupywallstreet?

No exceptions should be made in due process for US citizens. We can not pick and choose to whom the law applies, and who the law does not apply to.




Survivalist OPSEC

Posted by Kevin Felts On September 27, 2011 Comments Off

bug out location cookingAs a survivalist, live part of your life by one simple saying – “loose lips sink ships”.

There is an episode of the Twilight Zone where some satellites are picked up as incoming nuclear missiles. One man and his family has taken the time to build a bomb shelter under his house, but none of the other neighbors have taken the time to prepare. As the news of the “missiles” is broadcast over the radio, people started to panic.

The family that had the shelter started moving supplies into the shelter, filling jars with water, grabbing flashlights and batteries, moving canned goods from the kitchen to the shelter,,,,. After the family closed the door to their shelter, the neighbors start beating on the steel door demanding the family let everyone else in.

As the missiles are getting closer, the neighbors start tearing down the steel door of the shelter. As the door is just about to be removed, the news reports that the missiles are really satellites, and the whole alarm was a mistake.




Marketable life skills

Posted by Kevin Felts On September 26, 2011 Comments Off

How do you develop life skills that are marketable?  Either through an education, training or experience.  But, how do you know if your skills will be in demand? Over the past few years I have seen people over spending on their education.  People will go into $100k of debt, for a degree that pays $30k  [ Read More ]




Two rifle calibers for SHTF survival

Posted by Kevin Felts On September 23, 2011 0 Comments

22 long rifle

22 Long Rifle For SHTFLets say that some kind of long term disaster happens, such as civil unrest, climate change, new disease breaksout. You and your family head to the remote camp. Unless you have a small farm with chickens, rabbits, hogs, or goats, the main source of meat is either going to be fishing or hunting.

The 22 long rifle is well suited for taking just about any small game in North America, maybe even anywhere in the world.

If the muzzle report is a concern, stock upon 22 shorts or sub-sonic ammo.

If you need a little more power then the 22 long rifle, there is the 22 magnum.

When my dad was growing up, one of the families main sources of food was small game, like squirrels. For hunting the tree rats, my dad used 22 shorts. When I was growing up, my dad used to take me and my brother squirrel hunting every winter. Instead of using a 22 rifle, we used shotguns – my dad used a 12 gauge with #4 shot, and I used my single shot Winchester 410. when I got old enough, my dad bought me a Montgomery Ward Western Field (Mossberg) 12 gauge pump shotgun.

Related forum section: Ruger 10/22 Forum

One of the big differences between the 22 long rifle and a shotgun, is the cost of the ammunition. Where a box of 25 shotgun shells might cost $10 – $15, a brick of 500 round of 22 long rifle cost less then $20.




Storing survival gear

Posted by Kevin Felts On September 21, 2011 Comments Off

Storing survival gearIts time for a change. My survival gear is spread out all over a spare bedroom, couple of storage boxes and 2 closets. Its time to round everything up and get things organized.

My wife and I have a spare bedroom that my son uses when he comes to visit. Since the room is only used a few times a month, we decided to install some shelves and organize our survival gear stocks.

The shelving unit was bought from a local china-mart. The unit is 6 feet tall, each shelf is 36 inches long, 17 inches wide and there is 15.75 inches between each shelf.

To prevent the shelving unit from being pulled over by the grand kids, the support poles of the unit were zip-tied to a set of bunk beds, and the shelves were screwed to the wall with 2 1/2 inch long screws. With small children around, you have to plan on them climbing on everything.

The plan is to have two shelving units side by side, with each unit holding a certain type of survival gear.

Fishing gear – one shelf is going to be dedicated to storing my fishing gear. Currently my fishing gear is being stored in 2 or 3 different places, in the closet, in a tackle box, in a fishing bucket,,,.

A 5 gallon bucket fits perfectly between the shelves, so I should have no problems storing my extra lures, trotline string, extra spools of monofilament line, extra hooks,,,. I need to buy a couple of wire trays to store the smaller items in, such as the spools of trotline string.




As life moves on

Posted by Kevin Felts On September 21, 2011 Comments Off

Weldbilt boat on the Angelina RiverThere is one inevitable fact of life, life moves forward, even when you do not want it to. Things around you change, people get older, kids grow up, life gets more expensive,,,.

As I look back on my life, I ask myself what happened? What happened to the young man that used to go camping all the time, would spend hours in the woods, and just seemed to know how to have fun? Where did that person go?

These days, and for the past few years, I have almost no desire to do much of anything. At the camp there is a tree that blew down. 10 years ago that tree would have already been cut up, split, and put in the shed for firewood. But today, that tree has been in the same place for several months.

Maybe its getting older, but I am only 43 years old, I should not be feeling like this. Where has my love of live, and my energy gone?




Wasting food after a disaster

Posted by Kevin Felts On September 19, 2011 Comments Off

Wasting foodThis weekend my family and I rented beach house and spent a couple of days at the beach. This was our last summer bash before old man winter arrives.

Something that was observed during breakfast reaffirms my belief that children will waste the most food then any other group during a long term shtf survival situation.

Several months ago my family and I had a cookout. When we have a cookout, we have a “COOKOUT” – ribs, brisket, beans,,,, the works. After everyone had packed up and went home, my wife and I started cleaning up the yard. It was during the clean up that I found something that irritated me – one of the children and taken a single bite out of a babyback rib, and then threw the rib on the ground. The size of the bite mark indicated a childs mouth.

With the rib being thrown on the ground, we were dealing with 2 different things – 1, a parent that is not watching their children; 2, a child that was just outright wasting food.

Video about cooking some ribs and brisket on the pit.




Living your life by your own standards

Posted by Kevin Felts On September 14, 2011 Comments Off

Bug Out Bag with Mossberg 590As I am sitting here listening to Rammstein, the title song by Rammstein, I have been thinking about my life, and what has been expected of me.

When I was in my early years and in school, I was expected to do my school work and do my homework. The question I always had was “why?”. Why did I “have” to do homework just because some teacher said I had to? During school hours I was required to sit at my desk, be quit, and do my work. But what gave the teacher the right to intrude into my life after school?

In sharp contrast to school, my full time job does not interfere with my life outside of work, unless I am paid for the work.

With homework, why didn’t I get comp time so that summer vacation started early? Students are supposed to attend X number of hours during the course of a school year, so why isn’t homework counted towards that time?

It appears to me that school is one step above child labor. Work was sent home with the students and we were not compensated for our time.




Save as much money as possible

Posted by Kevin Felts On September 14, 2011 Comments Off

Weldbilt boat on the Angelina RiverAnd I do not mean for retirement (saving for retirement helps, but most of us are not there yet). From news about food prices going up 18.5% from January – September 2011, the Bank of America laying off 30,000 employees, to the new reports on credit card debt owed buy the average American,,,, I do not think we are going to pull out of this recession anytime soon.

The US government has spent so much money, that we will never be able to pay it off. Our great-grand children have been saddled with such a great tax burden, that there is no hope for the future generations.

This Bank of America is a troubling sign. Banks do not like to lose money. In fact there are all kinds of laws to protect banks from losing money. It was just a few months ago that the Federal government cut the banks a blank check, most of which went to performance bonuses.

If you judge the health of a nation but how stable its banks are, and one of the largest banks is laying people off, what does that say? It says the USA is in some deep crap.




Remembering Hurricane Ike Three Years Later

Posted by Kevin Felts On September 13, 2011 Comments Off

hurricane ike floodingIts simple amazing how much time has passed under the bridge in the last 3 years. On September 13, 2008 Hurricane Ike made landfall, and changed the lives of tens of thousands of people forever.

Mom and Dads house was totaled, sold to the insurance company and demolished.

One of my best friends has rebuilt and now has a nice place.

My brother has rebuilt and seems to be no worse for the wear.

It was somewhere around 10:00pm or 10:30 that I lost phone contact with my kids who were riding out Hurricane Ike in Houston. I figured they were ok, but I worried about them until I knew for sure they were safe.

The winds with Ike were not near as bad as Rita, but the storm surge with Ike was probably 10X worse the Rita. With Rita southeast Texas got a little storm surge, but nothing like what came in with Ike.

The next morning after Ike passed through, my family and I left the shelter we were staying at and went home. I hooked to pit up to my truck and pulled the pit around to the front of my house. I wanted to pit fired up and cooking something, so that the people driving down the street would be assured that life would return to normal.




Picking a survival rifle caliber

Posted by Kevin Felts On September 12, 2011 Comments Off

.30 caliber survival rifleThere is a thread in the forum asking whether the 7mm or 8mm would make a good caliber for a survival rifle. When you walk into a pawn shop and you see a bunch of a certain type of firearms, that is usually not a good sign. If people like a product, they tend to hang onto it.

22 Long Rifle

The 22 long rifle should not need an introduction. The ammunition can be fired in rifles and pistols, firearms are not expensive and they have a long life expectancy. With the low recoil of the 22, parts last long then a full sized rifle caliber.

The low cost of the 22 ammunition makes it attractive to survivalist who want to stockpile thousands or tens of thousands of rounds.

The 22long rifle is effective on small game and does not do a lot of damage to the meat. When you use a 12 gauge on a squirrel, you might have to pick out a bunch of BBs. If you take a squirrel with a 22 short, you have 1 bullet hole.

A couple of my favorite rifles in 22 long rifle include the Marlin Model 60 and the Ruger 10/22. My Ruger 10/22 was bought in January of 1986 and is still going strong.

223 Remington / 5.56mm

Standard service round of the US military. there are survivalist out there that plan on using the 223 as their main survival rifle after SHTF, but I personally would not want to use the 223/5.56mm on deer sized game.

If you want a rifle for hunting after SHTF, there are better options out there besides the 223.

One of the really nice things about the 223, there is a wide range of rifle options available on the market. There is everything from bolt actions rifle, to the Ruger Mini-14, to the AR-15.

243 / 6mm

The 243 is favored by a lot of people who hunt deer sized game, mainly due to the low recoil. for small framed people the 243 is a viable deer option, but bullet placement is critical.

I say the 243 is good for small framed people, but I used to work with a guy that was around 6 feet 3 inches tall, and he liked using the 243 for deer.

In my opinion, there is nothing wrong with the 243. its that shooters should be aware of the limitations of the cartridge.




Most Americans not prepared for a disaster

Posted by Kevin Felts On September 12, 2011 Comments Off

Personally, I think government has been pushed into so many parts of our lives, people have developed an attitude that government will “always” be there.  We call 911 and someone answers, we call the police and someone answers, we see the police patrolling in their cars, we see the news  TV about arrest being made,,,  [ Read More ]




Being a liability to a survival group

Posted by Kevin Felts On September 10, 2011 Comments Off

survivalist camp bug out locationThere are two types of people in a survival group – assets and liabilities. In your survival group, how do you determine who is a liability and who is an asset. For the sake of discussion, lets talk about liabilities.

Liabilities to a survival group usually do not:

Stockpile food – they do not take the time to prepare and kind of food stocks besides some canned goods, noodles, pasta,,, the typical stuff someone would keep in their cabinet.

Instead of having food stored in mylar bags or buying #10 cans, liabilities trust that other people will stockpile food for them. Storing food in mylar bags is not expensive, but it is time consuming. The liability usually does not want to dedicate any extra time to preparing their food stockpile.

If liabilities do have food stocked up, its going to be just enough for a few days, maybe a week or two at the longest.

When their food stocks run out, the liability will ask the other members of the survivalist group for help.

During a long term SHTF survival situation, the most in demands items are going to be food and safe drinking water. Even though food will be one of the most in demand items, its also one of the most overlooked items of the liability. Where a survivalist takes the time to study their food preps and stockpile food, the liability will usually shop at the local grocery store and only buy what their family needs within the next week or 2 weeks.




Hunter Gatherer or Farmer Survivalist

Posted by Kevin Felts On September 9, 2011 0 Comments

SHTF Long Term SurvivalWhat kind of long term survival plans do you have? Do you plan on bugging out to the wilderness and living a hunter gatherer lifestyle, or do you plan on living the lifestyle of a farmer gardener?

Hunter Gatherer

Our ancestors lived a hunter gatherer lifestyle for hundreds of thousands of years. For some people hunting, gathering roots, gathering berries and fishing the rivers might seem like an attractive lifestyle. I wonder if those types of people are influenced by their genes? Do the survival that plan on bugging out to the wilderness carry more the genetic code for the hunter gatherer lifestyle?

The problem with the hunter gatherer lifestyle, those types of people only plan a few days or weeks ahead of time. Tribes followed the herds along their yearly migration routes. There was little planning – follow the herd, kill something, gather roots, gather berries, catch some fish, follow the herd,,, repeat, as they were required to gather food almost daily. People learned that if they dried meat and fish, or salted the meat and fish it lasted longer. During the Lewis and Clark expedition, the explorers noted that the North American Indians dried their fish to store it during the winter. But man can not live on dried fish alone.

Farming and Gardening

It’s estimated that maybe 7,000 years ago people started adopting the farming and gardening lifestyle over the hunter gatherer lifestyle.

As communities started planting crops, we started thinking in 3 – 4 month periods. People started making calenders, counting the days of the year, planting crops, harvesting seeds, drying crops to save them over the winter, domesticating livestock,,,,,.

People started paying attention to when it was time to work the fields and plant the crops. A few months later its time to harvest the crops and put the crops up for the winter.

After people started planting crops, they found out that they had to stay in the area to take care of the fields.




Shortsighted Survival Plans

Posted by Kevin Felts On September 7, 2011 Comments Off

Calm before the SHTF panic stormAfter watching Hurricane Irene hit the east coast, the fires in Texas, and the earthquake in the northeast,,,, do you think people will go into a long term panic buying mode? Meaning, will people start stockpiling food, guns, water and ammunition more then usual?

When there is a disaster, people usually kick into some kind of short term panic buying mode for a few weeks. People will buy all of the batteries, flashlights, camp stoves, 1 pound propane bottles,,, and even ice chest stores have in stock. But after the disaster passes, people seem to forget about the disaster and return to what their life was before anything happened.

With the recent events, do you plan on changing your spending habits to buy a few more canned canned goods then normal.

After Hurricane Rita, there were people complaining they did not have gas to drive to the food lines. Even though they had several days warning, they did not gas up their vehicles. The local radio station would have a talk show where people could call in, and important information was broadcast to the community. There were people calling in and asking how they were supposed to get to the food lines? the radio host asked them if they had been watching the news before Rita made landfall. The people that called in to the radio station usually had some kind of excuse to justify their actions.

What is wrong with people, the news says there is a major storm on the way, and they do not even buy some basic canned goods and gas up their car. I guess they think the government will be there to help them within a few hours after the storm passes.

Video about stockpiling LED Flashlights, Seeds and Lithium Batteries