Rural Lifestyle Blog

Life in Rural America

Category: Survival Gear

Survival Gear Reviews

Springtime survival gear preps

teotwawki survival gearSpring is here, that means its time to stock up on seasonal preps. The local feed and fertilizer stores are getting their seed shipments in, as well as baby chickens, fertilizer,,, and so on.

Some stores carry farm supplies all year long, some places carry them on a seasonal basis. If at all possible, find a place in your area that carries farm and livestock supplies all year long. Here in Jasper Texas we have 3 feed and fertilizer stores that carry farm supplies all year long.

Circle Three Feed
Farmers Feed

Pickle’s carries a wide assortment of seed, pesticide and fertilizer. If you want to buy corn seed, this is the place to go.

Circle Three Feed carries a lot of farm and livestock supplies. If you want to buy chickens, feed, deer corn, this is a good place to go.

Farmers Feed carries a lot of everything. I have bought deer corn, chicks, seeds, 16 gallon drums,,, all kinds of stuff from Farmers Feed.

Even if the stores carry supplies all year long, there are still items that are seasonal, such as seeds and chicks. If you want chicks and if you want seed, get down to a local feed store and stockup before the seasonal stuff is sold out.

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Remington 1911 R1 Review

Remington 1911 R1 45acpFor an early birthday present my wife surprised me with a new Remington 1911 R1. I got the pistol on Thursday (January 5, 2012), over the past couple of weekends I took the pistol out on 3 different shooting sessions spanning 2 weekends.

You never get a second chance to make a good first impression. Lets just say that I am not happy with the first impression. I do not claim to be an expert on the 1911. But I do know that firearms should have have fail to feeds. When you pull the trigger, the firearm should work. If the firearm does not work, something is wrong. I will leave it up to a qualified gun smith to figure out what is wrong.

First shooting session

The Remington 1911 R1 was disassembled and any excessive grease or oil was wiped off.

To break in the new pistol, I went to the local wal-mart and bought 100 rounds of Remington/UMC 230 JHP, this is the bulk pack of 100 rounds per box. The other box was Winchester 230 grain round nose. The Winchester was also the bulk box

Our of about 100 rounds fired, I had 7 failures. The malfunctions happened with factory supplied magazines.

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Disaster Preparedness Manuals

Disaster Preparedness Manuals, also known as survival manuals are often overlooked by preppers and survivalist. There is a wealth of information out there, but you have to have the books in hand for them to do you any good.

Over the past few weeks I picked up 6 new disaster preparedness manuals:

Homeland security field guide
Quick Series guide to public health emergencies
Quick Series emergency preparedness for persons with disabilities and medical conditions
Janes Chem-bio handbook
Chickens by Dereck Hall

I also have Chickens for Dummies on the way, it should be here next week.

Homeland Security Field GuideHomeland Security Field Guide, a pocket reference for weapons of mass destruction (WMD) & terrorism response:

One thing that stands out about this manual, the different sections have tabs that you can see without having to open the book. Need information about decon, find the decon tab, open the book to that section.

102 pages

Categories include:

First in response
Command considerations Continue Reading….

Schrade SCHF9 Survival Knife Review

Schrade Schrade SCHF9 Extreme Survival Knife A couple of years ago I started looking for a heavy duty camping / backpacking wilderness survival knife.


The purpose of the knife is to have a knife that can be strapped to the outside of a MOLLE or ALICE pack. The knife has to be sturdy enough to clear small brush, chop small limbs, cut tent stakes, clean fish, butcher wild game, or even use the spine of the knife as a hammer.

My current “go to” knife is a Cold Steel Recon Scout. The new knife is not intended to be a replace the Recon Scout, but more along the lines of an alternative. The Recon Scout has a belt loop, but no MOLLE or ALICE attachments. I want a knife that can quickly and easily attach to any of my packs. Continue Reading….

Best survival knife for under 25 dollars

survivalistYou have $25 to spend, you want to buy a good quality knife, so which one do you buy?

What is the purpose of a $25 survival knife? In my opinion, knives in that price range are disposable. They are the knives that if lost or stolen are not going to be expensive to replace.

From a survivalist point of view, spend $100 on 3 or 4 knives, store them at your Bug Out Location, keep one in a tackle box or use them for hand out knives to friends and family. Someone breaks into your Bug Out Location, steals your knives, you are not out several hundred dollars.


Sheath Belt loop or ALICE / MOLLE attachments
Made from quality steel
Full tang
Fixed blade Continue Reading….

2012 Prepping Plans

Stockpiling food for shtf

With a title of “2012 prepping plans”, you might think this article is about what might happen in December of 2012. Well, that is not what this article is about. If you are worried about 2012, and you consider yourself a prepper or a survivalist, then you are doing it wrong. We should not bother ourselves with dates and predictions of doom and gloom. Our duty to our family and those close to us is to maintain a constant state of readiness. It is impossible to maintain a 100% constant state of readiness. To do so would require us to walk around with a gas mask and bio-suit. What we can do, is have a stockpile of food, water and the ability to protect our family and property.

The goal of this article is to look back on 2011, reflect, and then look forward to 2012. Where do you need to improve your preps, what areas have you neglected and what changes can you make in the coming year.

As 2012 approaches, some of us might be thinking about news years resolutions. Along with the typical lose weight and stop smoking resolutions, I would like everyone to post suggestions related to how prepared you and your family are. Where do you need to make improvements. On top of your own preps, what do you family members need to do to improve? Continue Reading….

Buying a new 45acp

Years ago I owned a Ruger P90. but my wife and I fell on hard times and the pistol had to be sold to catch up on bills. Selling firearms is something I do as a last resort. At this time I am 43 years old, and have only had to sell 3 firearms during my adult life, and all three sells I regret. I want a new 45acp pistol, and this time I want a 1911. The 1911 is more then “just” a pistol or a handgun, its an American tradition. Owning a 1911 is like owning a chevy, ford or dodge, its just one of those things that defines what its like to be a US citizen. The question is, what make and Continue Reading….

Teotwawki fishing gear

Texas channel catfishThe past 2 days have been spent working on my truck, and working on some jug lines for an upcoming camping trip. When I started thinking about how much time and effort I put into getting the juglines ready, I was a little set back.

After talking to my wife, I probably put 6 – 8 hours into redoing, and working on the juglines. The lines had not been used since June 2011. I changed the lines out, added some PVC pipe to the noodles and replaced the J-hooks with circle hooks. When I started cutting the PVC pipe, I was using a hacksaw. After cutting a few pipe, I dug the skilsaw out and started using the saw instead of the hacksaw.

For the sake of discussion lets say this happened after a SHTF / teotwawki event. I would have had to use a hacksaw to cut the PVC pipe. But then again, its doubtful I would have had any PVC laying around. To make the noodles for this weekend I used some 3/4 inch PVC I had in the shed.

Without PVC pipe I would have threaded the line through the middle of the noodle.

Related forum thread – Fishing With Juglines

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Rifle calibers for survivalist

Hunting rifle for SHTF teotwawkiWhen talking to survivalist, they seem to be divided into two groups – people that do, and people that talk.

Recently I asked the people on the SurvivalistBoards facebook page what rifle calibers they hunt with. I made sure to specify what calibers they currently own and use, and not what calibers they plan on buying.

For my area, its the 30-30, 308 and 280. Available game are hogs and whitetail deer. Longest shot is going to be around 125 yards. If you are on a pipeline or highline, shots might get out to the 200 yard mark. The rolling hills and thick timber stop the shots from being too long.

Some of the answers I received:

‎.243 Winchester

12 gauge, use it for everything from pheasant and ducks to Deer and bear. I hunting mostly swampy areas so no long shots.

.270 east Texas… hogs, deer, coyotes, 130gr Winchester ballistic tip nosler. stops them in their tracks with minimal meat loss.

.308 Winchester



.308 BLR. If I was to use something else it would probably be a .30-30. Continue Reading….

Deer Season Daypack Loadout

Wilderness survival kitDeer season is here, instead of grabbing a pack, throwing some random gear in and heading out to the woods, lets take a look at some items that should be considered. The way I look at it, your pack needs to contain everything you need to track a wounded deer, find your way back back to the truck after dark or spend an unexpected night in the woods.

A basic pack – This could be anything from a school book bag, to a good quality pack like a Maxpedition Sitka or Maxpedition Noatak. You need something that is not going to tear apart when your tracking a deer as the last bit of the sunlight fades away. For my current load out I am using the Maxpedition Noatak.

GPS & Compass – When you get off the trail back to the truck, you might need something to help find your way. Or worse yet, if you and your buddies have to track a deer through a thicket in pitch black dark.

Mark the truck before you head out and set the GPS to go back to the truck before you head out. This will tell you how far off the way point is.

Get familiar with your GPS and compass “before” you have to use it. Make sure you understand the difference between heading and bearing, and which one you need to set your compass to.

Learn how to set and read a compass.

If the GPS says you need a bearing of 130 degrees, would you know how to set the compass to 130 degrees in order to find your way to where you want to go?

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Is the SKS still a viable survival rifle

Hunting whitetail deer after shtfWith SKS prices creeping close to the $300 price range, why are they considered a viable option for survivalist,,, or even anyone else? Back in the 1990s when you could pick up an SKS for less then $100, yea, I could see buying one then. But over the past 2 decades prices have steadily gone up, I think to the point where they are not worth the price.

Lets take the Remington model 770 – synthetic stock, factory scope, popular calibers that are more effective on deer sized game then the 7.62X39,,,, and the 770 cost right at the $300 price range.

Last year my nephew used his Remington 770 to take a doe during youth weekend. At around 50 – 75 yards, the 150 grain Remington core-lokt was devastating to the whitetail. The blood trail looked like someone turned on a waterhose.

I can see buying an SKS for its novelty, and for its history, but not for its price. The SKS is not going to be a target rifle like a modern bolt action rifle and the 7.62×39 is not as effective on deer sized game as lets say a 270 or 308. Continue Reading….

Stockpiling Ammo at the Bug Out Location

Stockpiling ammo at the Bug Out LocationThis past weekend I decided it was time to organize the ammunition at the Bug Out Location. We had ammo stored in 3,,, 4 different locations, which made taking inventory a pain in the rear end.

My wife cleared off a wire shelf so I could bring it to the camp and organize the ammo stockpile. The idea was to get all of the ammo together, see what we have and go from there.

Ammunition at the Bug Out Location is your “oh crap, the S has seriously HTF.” If you have to rely on the ammunition stockpile that you BOL, something really bad has happened – you and your family have had to leave your home, friends and family are probably knocking on your door asking for help,,, things have gone from bad to worse.

Because I look at BOL ammo as a last resort, I only stockpile what I normally shoot in my rifles. This is ammunition that has been tried, tested and proven to work in my rifle and on the game animals in my area. Why use a certain type of ammunition during hunting season, and stockpile a different type of ammo at the Bug Out Location? While this applies to hunting ammo, I look at defensive ammo in a different light.

As for defensive ammo, I stockpile one type, and its something that preforms well in my rifles. The goal of defensive ammo is to poke holes in the target.

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Stockpiling firearms for SHTF

Deer hunting 270 WinchesterHunting season is here, and I have been thinking about my firearm setup. How many people have more then 1 rifle per caliber? What is the point of stockpiling ammo, and then have 1 rifle that could break? Sure people have spare parts, but spare parts do not help your buddies hunt with you.

Part of my plans call for a worse case situation, meaning I have friends or family members show up at my front door with nothing but clothes. The food starts to run out, so we head to the camp to plant a garden and do some hunting.

What firearms do you have that you can hand to a friend or family member and say “here ya go”? Its easy to pick up a spare 22 rifle from time to time, but its another thing to have 2 or 3 rifles in 308 or 30-30.

In my opinion, a well rounded plan should include the ability to provide assistance to other members of your group. Shooting ability, size of the game, shooting experience,,,, should all be considered.

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Overlooked First Aid Kit Items

A few days ago I asked the SurvivalistBoards Facebook group a question, “Name one thing a first aid kit is not complete without.” Some of the answers were helpful, and some were not what I expected. I would like to thank all of the subscribers for helping out with this list. Anti-bacterial soap. With nothing else you can prevent minor injuries from becoming serious with proper cleaning. BANDAIDS Quick clot Iodine Guaze Toenail clippers Whiskey Super glue Tweezers CHOCOLATE Rum ration, toothpicks, and pain killers Ace wrap Burn gel Scalpel Surgical suture Abdominal pad A container, be it box or bag, to hold all of your supplies together and safe/clean. A good sized sewing needle…best thing to get out any splinter. Sometimes it’s the littlest Continue Reading….

Stockpiling food for SHTF and teotwawki

Stockpiling food for SHTF / teotwawki While browsing the forum this morning, I came across a thread about stockpiling food. After looking through the thread, and after installing some new can rotation systems, I started thinking about some off the issues with keeping our food stocks rotated.

My opinion, one of the biggest issues facing preppers and survivalist are keeping our food stocks rotated. When my wife and I went through our canned goods and started sorting them, we realized that we had over bought certain foods, and did not buy enough of other foods.

There are 3 things we do not need to buy anymore of – corn, tomato soup, tomatoes for chili and spaghetti, pickles,,,.

Related article – teotwawki survival gear storage

Take honey for example, we have 4 or 5 jars of honey, but 12 – 13 jars of peanut butter.

There are lots of can good rotation systems on the market, such as the Cansolidator storage unit, or use something like a can rotation system designed for 12 ounce soda cans.

My wife and I had been storing a lot of our can goods in the pantry with no real rotation system. Well, a couple of months ago I decided it was time to get with the program and get our can foods organized.

While walking through the local china-mart, my wife and I found some wire racks that are designed for keeping 12 ounce soda cans in the fridge. the racks are designed to hold a 12 pack of 12 ounce cans. Besides soda cans, the wire racks hold all types of soups, pasta, and peanut butter just fine.

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