Rural Lifestyle

Life in Rural America

Tag: life after shtf

Buying Fishing Gear For SHTF

While my wife and I were doing our Sunday shopping at the local china-mart, I went to the sporting goods section to look at the fishing supplies. Choices, choices, so many choices. Should I get some perching supplies, or stuff for catfishing, bass fishing,,,,,. Do I want supplies for artificial or live bait.

A lot of survivalist stockpile freeze dried foods, food in mylar bags, canned goods, seeds for a garden and ammunition for hunting. One thing that I do not see talked about a lot is fishing supplies. Maybe fishing supplies is a given, that everyone should have fishing supplies stockpiled, or maybe its overlooked by a lot of people?

Fishing supplies bought today:

1. Zoom artificial lizard, 6″ long, cotton candy color – for bass fishing

2. Eagle claw hooks, box of 40, size 1/0 – for catfish, noodles and trot lines

Cooking after TEOTWAWKI / SHTF

cooking after shtfWhat is your long term cooking solution post SHTF? We are not talking 2, 3 or even 5 days after the power goes out, we are talking about cooking for the long term – 1 year, 2 years, or even 3 years.

Most of the people that visit the forum know about my long term survival cooking solution, its a pit on a trailer with a cooking surface 6 feet 9 inches long and 29 inches across. The main pit is built out of a 250 gallon butane tank, the smoker and fire box are out of a 250 gallon tank. When I built my pit, I wanted something that was big enough to put a whole hog or deer on. With the smoker, maybe I can even make my own sausage.

Not everyone is going to have a pit with a built in smoker, so what are your choices.

Charcoal grill that can also use wood
Fire ring
Propane grill – but propane will run out sooner or later
Single burner propane or butane stove
Wood stove
Fireplace
Solar oven

Climate change and long term survival plans

Pears from a survivalist gardenThere is something that is bothering me about the climate change going on all around the world, and long term survival plans. Lets take Texas for example, my home state, has been under drought conditions for the past 3+ years. some of the local lakes are 8 – 10 feet low. A couple of years ago lake Travis got to around 100 feet below normal.

National Geographic wrote and interesting article about how Greenland was on the leading edge of climate change. The majority of Greenlands income is based off of fishing. But the warming waters has caused the shrimp and certain fish populations to decline. The big question is “where” are the fishing going.

The climate change is not limited to North America – there is an interesting article on the BBC how Soils of UK and Europe drying out.

In a long term survival situation – meteor strike, outbreak of a new plague, world wide war, long term civil unrest,,,, the only long term solution for food is to grow your own. But in the face of global climate change, how can we be sure that our crops will succeed.

This past weekend I went to the camp to pick up my bar-b-q pit and bring it home for memorial day weekend. While I was at the camp, I decided to check on the fruit trees. We have a couple of pear trees, some peach trees and a couple of plum trees planted there.

Upon inspection, I discovered just about all of the fruit was about 1/2 – 1/3 the size that it should be. If we were in a long term survival situation, I would have to watering the fruit trees from a nearby stream.

Abandoned Places and Long Term Disasters

Abandoned places after shtf

Let’s say that some kind of long term SHTF happens, like what happened in 1348 with the Black Death. Large areas are depopulated, nobody is around to maintain roads, nobody is around to keep the trees cut back, or do maintenance on buildings. What can we expect? In an effort to what what will happen to our infrastructure, my wife went driving around to look at abandoned sawmills and abandoned sawmill towns.

Sawmills

A local sawmill burned down in 1925, was not rebuilt and the land was abandoned in the 1930s or 1940s. All that remains is a couple of walls, the foundations, and some motor mounts where the saw motors were bolted down. If it was not made of cement or steel, its long gone. But even then, the steel is starting to rust away. Nothing of wood is visible above the layers of leaves and pine straw.

While walking around the remains of the sawmill, I can not help but think about the people that worked there. Did they have the same worries that we do today, did they worry about paying the house note; did they worry about their kids, and what about the politics at the time.

Post Apocalyptic Survival Gear

List of survival gear that I think would be useful in a post apocalyptic world.

1. Knowledge – This starts with having an understanding of how the human species acts during a long term survival situation. Find some history books on amazon about the black death of 1348 – 1350. Read those books and get a grasp on how people acted and what they resorted to. Some of the stories look like they came straight out of a Hollywood movie – like starving people digging up dead bodies to cannibalize the remains.

Part of your survival library should include resource material on gardening, raising livestock and farming.

First aid manuals with information on diseases and wound treatment.

2. Water filter – Without safe drinking water, life as we know it can not exist. Diseases like Cholera, Typhoid, E. Coli, Cryptosporidiosis, Giardiasis, Shigella and Salmonella can wipe out entire communities in a matter of days.

There are water filters, and then there are “water filters.” If you have a family with 4, 5 6,,, 12 people, then adjust your water filter size to fits your needs.

Then there is the problem of drinking water in an urban survival situation. Most people that live in cities do not have access to a water well or a creek or stream. Once the water gets cut off, thats it.

Thoughts on Hunting After SHTF

whitetail deer hunting post shtf

During the great depression of the 1930s, whitetail deer and wild turkey were almost hunted to extinction in certain areas around the USA. From what I understand, the East Texas wild turkey was hunted to extinction levels, and birds had to be imported from other parts of the nation to restore the population. The same thing happened to the whitetail deer population in East Texas. The one animal that does not seem to be affected from hunting is the wild hog. Even though the majority of the 50 states has an open season on wild hogs, their population is still thriving.

One of the big differences between wild turkeys, whitetail deer and wild hogs – is the amount of off spring that can be produced. Deer and turkeys reproduce once a year. Wild hogs are like rats, they reproduce all the time.

Wild Turkeys

If you harvest 3 wild turkeys out of a flock, they will not be replaced until the following year. Female wild turkeys can lay about 12 eggs at a time. Survival rate of turkey chicks is determined by a lot of factors – such as, if there are fire ants close to the nest, and the raccoon population.

Fire ants will attack, kill and eat the turkey chicks. Studies have shown that the higher the raccoon the population in a given area, the lower the survival rate of egg laying animals. Whether its ducks or turkeys, raccoons will raid the nest and steal the eggs.

Essential Survival Gear for a Bug Out Location

deer camp hunting lease

Lets take a look at some essential survival gear for the bug out location

Running water – modern civilization is built off of several things: running water, sanitation and the ability to make hot water, only to name a few. Having a raised water tower makes most of the items on that list possible. Through running water we are able to wash our hands, flush our toilets, and run water through a hot water heater (propane powered of course).

Having a raised water tower is easier then a lot of people think. Farm supply stores sell water tanks is sizes like 250 gallon, 500 gallon and 750 gallon. With the help of some power tools, stainless steel or galvanized lag bolts, rubber strips for washers, drill bits, some 8 – 10 foot round poles for legs, PVC pipes and fittings, some hard work, sweat and custom engineering, its very possible to have your very own raised water tower. With the base of the tower just 5 – 6 feet off the ground, this can create enough pressure for people to wash their hands, fill a toilet, and maybe even run the water through a small hot water heater.

To keep the water tank filled up, pump water from a nearby creek with a solar powered water pump, or have a well put down and install a hand pump on the water well.

With a “little” imagination, custom engineering, sweat and determination, just about anything is possible, and that includes running water without electricity.

Safe place to sleep

If SHTF Would You Have a Future

Overlooking the Angelina River near Jasper, Texas

There was a line in 28 Days Later that got me to thinking. Its after the group leaves the city and finds their way to the house controlled by the soldiers. The commanding officer takes Jim (played by Cillian Murphy) into a courtyard where an infected soldier is chained up.

The commanding officer tells the Jim that the infected soldier provides a lot of information. Jim says something along the lines of “what does he tell you?” The commanding officer explains that the infected solider will never raise crops, he will never raise livestock, he will never bake bread, he has no future. And eventually, he will tell me how long the infected take to starve to death.”

This brings up the question, post SHTF, how many people will “have no future”?

  • How many people will be unable to raise crops,
  • How many people will be unable to raise livestock,
  • How many people will be unable to hunt,
  • How many people will be unable to bake bread,
  • How many people will be able to adapt to a new lifestyle,

I call it “the dog bowl theory” – its when a dog looses its instinct to hunt. Its when a dog walks over to the food bowl, there is no food, so the dog just looks up at the dogs owner and whines. Its like the dog is saying “what am I supposed to do now? There is no food in the bowl.”

Bug Out Location Cooking Solutions

Cooking at the bug out location

What are your plans for cooking with no electricity? Some people might have a grill on the back porch, some people might have a wood burning stove, with others may have no cooking options at all.

Let’s say worse case situation and the family has to bug out to the remote camp, now what? What are your cooking solutions?

Lets divide cooking into three layers:

  1. Personal cooking
  2. Family / Unit cooking
  3. Communal cooking

Personal Cooking

Ways to boost morale

A disaster has hit, your family has been forced to leave the home, morale is down. Now what? There are a few subtle things that people can do to get the morale of the group back up.

1. A good hot meal – Not a cold meal, not a cheap meal, not a quick and easy meal – a good, hot, meal. When your belling is empty, everyone will be in a bad mood.

2. Comfort foods – This usually includes stuff like chocolate. When we eat chocolate, our brains release endorphins, which makes us feel good. Chocolate contains anandamide, which activates certain pleasure zones in the human brain – the more we eat, the better we feel.

3. Personal Hygiene – Simple stuff like being able to brush your teeth, take a shower, clean clothes, can improve a persons outlook on the situation. When people feel dirty all over, their overall mood can deteriorate.

Bugging Out to The Wilderness

Bugging out to the wilderness

There is a theory that has been going around the survival community for decades, and at one time I subscribed to it, but not any more.

The theory goes like this – if there is some kind of wide spread disaster, I am just going to grab my bug out bag, and bug out to the wilderness. From there, my family and I will live in peace as society falls apart. When everything has passed, my family and I will return and help re-build.

Here are some of the reasons why I no longer subscribe to the bug out to the wilderness theory:

Ehrlichiosis
Lyme Disease
Rocky Mountain spotted fever
Tularemia
E. Coli
Cryptosporidium
Dysentery
Vitamin Deficiencies
Culture Shock – that may not be the correct term, but its going to be used anyway
Frost Bite
Heat Stroke
Heat Exhaustion
Only to name a few,,,,,,,,,.

Barter Items For After SHTF / TEOTWAWKI

If SHTF tomorrow, 12 months later, what items would you have that you could use for barter? Is bartering even in your plans, have you even thought about it? The other day I was walking through wal-mart and was thinking about low cost, good quality trade items. There is a difference in good quality, medium quality and poor quality barter items.

Here are some examples of barter/trade items:

Gold and silver only have value when someone values money. Once society has broken down to where its a dog eat dog world, I’am willing to bet that food will have more value then gold and silver.

Solar panels, seeds, first aid supplies are a good quality trade items.

Clothing might have an “ok” trade value.

Hand tools might be a medium quality trade item. If your cars and trucks are not running, what value are hand tools.

Survival Camp Example

survivalist camp bug out location

The worse has happened – some kind of pandemic disease is whipping out mankind, or a nuke strike has launched this nation in chaos, or something else has happened.

You now have to leave the city. So, where do you go? Some emergencies are regional – such as a hurricane or wild fires. So staying with friends or family might be an option.

For the sake of this article, lets discuss this topic as if its world wide. So now what do you do?


Food Sources in a Post Apocalyptic World

Bugging out to the wilderness

Lets discuss food sources in a post apocalyptic world after SHTF. Survivalist have a wide range of ideas on how to get food in a post apocalyptic world. Some of these ideas cover everything from living a hunter-gather lifestyle, to living off of food stocks until society recovers, to farming and gardening. Lets take a look at some of these ideas and make some comparisons.

The plans that each Survivalist has will vary widely depending on actual experience and training. The plans range from the very well thought out and tested plans, to spur of the moment ideas.

Lets set the tone for this article – a new virus has developed that has a 90% fatality rate. This is like what the Black Death was in 1348 – 1350, where 1/3 of Europe died. Society has broken down to the point where no food or fuel supplies are being shipped. People will not leave their homes except to find food – which gets more difficult to find. Finally, people have to do “something” so they do not starve to death.

One survivalist approach is to Bug Out to the wilderness and live off the land – this is also called the “Bug Out Bag” theory. In the event of a world wide disaster, the survivalist is going to grab their Bug Out Bag, then take their family out to the wilderness to live off the land.

This is reminiscent of prehistoric man living a hunter-gather subsistence lifestyle.

Problems With Bugging Out To The Wilderness

Solar Powered Sidewalk Lights Instead of Candles

Most people do not realize that they have a renewable light source right at their feet. And that is those solar powered lights along the walkway. If you do not have any solar powered sidewalk lights, take a look at a local hardware store, or big box mart – such as wal-mart, lowes and k-mart. They are usually in the garden section.

When shopping for a solar powered light, do not get the cheapest ones on the shelf. But then again, dont go overboard on the price either. There are usually 2 different colored lights – clear and amber. Do not get the amber colored lens, they do not put out as much light as the ones with the clear lens. Be sure to get the lights that use an LED and not a regular bulb.

The way those lights work, during the day the solar cell recharges 2 AA batteries. As the sun starts to go down, a light sensor tells the unit when to turn on. Depending on how much sun light the solar cell got, that defines how much light the unit can provide. The more sun light the cell is exposed to during the day, the longer the burn time at night.

Kevin Felts © 2008 - 2018