Create a Fast and Easy Emergency Shelter

Create a Fast and Easy Emergency Shelter

Even if you have all the food and items you need to bug out in a hurry, are you ready to survive in a wilderness survival scenario right now? How would you create a shelter if you don’t have a tent with you? It’s very important that you take the time to learn how to make a variety of different shelters based on different locales. Today, you can learn how to make a very basic and simple shelter in the woods. This type of shelter shouldn’t take more than an hour or so to construct, and it requires minimal effort […]

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Heal All

Heal All

While it might come just short of fulfilling the expectations one might have given it’s common name, Prunella Vulgaris, or “heal all”, is a great source of both wilderness survival food, and medicine.  It is widely distributed throughout the world, being found in North American, Europe, and Asia.  It can be found in grasslands, or on the edge of forested areas, especially in moist areas.   Food The leaves can be eaten raw, or cooked.  Younger leaves are tastier but the plant remains edible throughout its life.  The leaves can be used to brew tea, or soaked in water and […]

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Urban Post-Disaster Camouflage

Urban Post-Disaster Camouflage

Clean, flat ground and sharp right angles all around can make camouflage difficult in an urban setting.  But after a catastrophic disaster things will look a little different.  Garbage and debris are likely to be scattered all over.  You can use this to your advantage to camouflage yourself when you out scavenging after a disaster.  Here are some tips on how you can use trash as camouflage in a post-disaster urban environment.   Observe what trash and debris items you see in your environment that would be light enough to attack to your gear or clothing for camouflage. You don’t […]

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Cigarettes and Booze for Survival   

Cigarettes and Booze for Survival  

  Most people would not think of things as unhealthy as cigarettes and liquor as items that should be stored for survival, but they are not without their uses for post-disaster survival.  Here are just a few ways in which you can make use of these items usually associated with unhealthiness so that you can increase your survivability after a catastrophe.   Stings Insect stings and bites can be treated with tobacco.  Remove the fine tobacco from a from a cigarette and mix it with spit.  Given the taste of cigarette tobacco and the additives in it you might not […]

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Why You Should Always Have a Needle and Thread in Your Survival Kit

Why You Should Always Have a Needle and Thread in Your Survival Kit

  Generally when one thinks about items to include in a survival kit a knife, fire rod, iodine tablets, and things like that come to mind.  But not all items that are valuable for survival are the ones that first come to mind or usually make the list for camping.  One such item is a needle and thread or a pocket sewing kit.  Here are a few reasons why you should make what little room is required to add this to your survival kit.   Gear Repair It may seem like a minor thing to you now, when you have […]

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Zip Tie Escape from the Rear

Zip Tie Escape from the Rear

  Needing to escape from having your hands zip tied behind your back might seem like an unlikely scenario if you are not prone to engaging in riots.  But the unfortunate reality is that people in their own homes have been zip tied and beaten by intruders, others have been restrained for kidnapping using zip ties.  There are crazy people in this world, and ignoring them and their potential methods is not going to protect you from them.  Here is a video less than a minute long that shows how you can get out of zip ties even when your […]

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Ant Harvest

Ant Harvest

  Insects are the most abundant forms of animal life on the planet, and should not be passed up as a source of food in the wilderness.  Ants are a great insect for survival food because they make colonies with massive populations.  But with their small size, it can be difficult to gather up enough of them to satisfy your hunger.  Here’s a technique for making that a lot easier, all you need is a tarp or even a large trash bag.   Most importantly you need to find an ant colony first. The technique will work better if you […]

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Cattails, the Survival Supermarket

Cattails, the Survival Supermarket

It’s not unusual to find plants that offer more than one benefit for survival, but few come close to the versatility of the cattail.  Cattails can be used to start fire, build shelter, manufacture tools, and for nutritious food.  They are widely distributed, growing in almost any environment that water can be found.  Coming across a clump of cattails while struggling for survival is like finding a supermarket in the wilderness.   Fire Starting When the heads of cat tail have turned brown they will be filled with a light fluffy material that is a perfect tinder.  If the head […]

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Why Whole Foods are Better for Prepping   

Why Whole Foods are Better for Prepping  

  Having a stash of non-perishable food on hand is absolutely essential for preparedness.  It’s probably the first thing new preppers start with.  But there is some debate on what should make it into that supply, and what should be left out.  Some people just have a hard time giving up their junk food despite the fact that they shouldn’t be eating it now, let alone under the physical stresses of post disaster survival.  There is no changing people’s minds, but this article isn’t really for those hardcore junk food addicts as much as for those that understand some of […]

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Night Sights, Lasers and White Light

Night Sights, Lasers and White Light

Versatility in an important quality for all survival equipment and skills.  That goes for your pistol as well, and your defensive shooting skills and strategy.  One of the major considerations for versatility in defensive pistol shooting is low light shooting and target acquisition in low light.  Three pieces of gear that help with this are night sights, laser sights, and white lights (mounted on your pistol or in your weak hand).  This is a look at the strengths and weaknesses of each of these items.   Night Sights Night sights will allow you to get sight alignment in low light […]

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Starting Them Young-Getting Children Involved in Survival Preparedness

Starting Them Young-Getting Children Involved in Survival Preparedness

In a time when it is not unusual to see kids as young as two years old using a touchscreen device to entertain themselves while being pushed around in the shopping cart through the store, it should be obvious that most kids are disconnected from the real, natural world around them. Children of this generation are less likely to take an interest in the outdoors, and less likely to gain the knowledge and skills necessary to survive in the wilderness.  Getting them started young can give them a greater appreciation for the natural world, start a foundation for future survival […]

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3 Survival Uses for Soda Cans

3 Survival Uses for Soda Cans

  It’s a shame when hiking in a remote area with pristine wilderness to find trash that careless people have left behind.  But if you are struggling to survive in that same wilderness, that trash might look a lot better.  One common item that can be found even in remote areas that has potential for use in a wilderness survival situation is a soda can.  Here are 3 ways that you can make use of a soda can for wilderness survival.   Fire Starter You can start a fire with nothing more than a soda can, if it’s sunny day.  […]

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Fish Snare

Fish Snare

Fishing is a great way to get meat in a survival scenario.  But it can be difficult to do if you need to spend your time tending to your other needs like gathering wood, building shelter, or hauling water.  You could always just tie a line to a stick and leave it with bait in the water.  It’s likely that if there are fish in the water that you will get a bite, unfortunately, it’s also likely that before you come back to check on the line that the fish has gotten itself free and stolen your bait.  To prevent […]

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Psychological Threats to Survival

Psychological Threats to Survival

The physical threats to your survival like temperature loss, dehydration, or starvation are obvious to just about anyone.  But less obvious, and just as dangerous are the psychological factors that can erode your ability, and even your will to survive.  Just as with the physical threats, the psychological threats to your survival can be dealt with if you can identify them and respond appropriately.  These are some of those threats and how you can deal with them.   Panic When you realize that you are facing a life or death situation panic is a natural reaction.  But panic can make […]

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Debris Shelter

Debris Shelter

  In most cases of wilderness survival shelter will be your number one concern since hypothermia can kill you much faster than starvation or even dehydration.  One of the easiest and fastest shelters that can be built in the wilderness is the debris shelter.  One person, with no equipment, can put one together in less than two hours with the material that is available in most forested areas.  If you find yourself stranded in the woods facing a cold night, before thinking about a fire, get a quick debris shelter built, here’s how.   Locate a health tree that doesn’t […]

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Transpiration Bag

Transpiration Bag

Water is one of the three most important elements for survival, and in some circumstances, it might be the most important.  Even in temperate environments with plenty of vegetation, it can be hard to find sources of water.  But if you have a plastic bag, all you need to do is find the vegetation.  I have already written about in-ground stills that use vegetation and sunlight to harvest water, here is an easier way, that can yield greater results.  It’s called a transpiration bag and this is how to use one.   The only piece of gear that you will […]

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Upside-Down Fire

Upside-Down Fire

As I’ve said before, if all you know about fire is the tee-pee camp fire, then you don’t know enough about fire to survive in anything be the most ideal scenario.  The more versatile your fire building skills are, the better chance of survival you have in a variety of scenarios.  The amount of, and the type of fuel available to you in the wilderness will not always be the same.  Likewise, the purpose of your fire, and the weather conditions that you are going to be using it in will change.  For times when you will need a slow […]

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What to Barter in a Disaster

What to Barter in a Disaster

Recently I mentioned in an article that I don’t recommend keeping sizable amounts of cash stored for disaster, and why I don’t think it would to you any good to do so.  One of those reasons is that after a disaster there will be extreme inflation on the items that people will need most.  One strategy for preparedness is to store items that you will be able to barter with after a disaster to get what you need.  Here are a few of the items that I would recommend storing more of than you think you will need, so that […]

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Wilderness Toothbrush

Wilderness Toothbrush

If you are stranded in the wilderness for any length of time, hygiene will quickly become an issue.  It won’t matter so much how you smell, since nobody ever died of body odor.  But poor dental hygiene can lead to serious issues that could have you incapacitated and dying a slow, painful death. As always, being able to use the material available to you in the wilderness for whatever needs may arise will increase your chances of survival, and elevate your standard of living while you do it.  Being able to make a toothbrush in the wild is one example […]

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Lean-to Fire

Lean-to Fire

Not every fire building technique will work for every situation.  The lean-to fire is a great design for windy situations.  It provides a built-in wind block and allows for you to continually add fuel as the fire grows.  Here’s how to build one.   Gather all your tinder, kindling and fuel before trying to start the fire. Take the log with the largest diameter that you have available and lay it in position, perpendicular to the direction the wind is blowing. This will serve as a wind block to help get the fire started, and as your bed of coals […]

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Best Toilet Paper Protection (Video)

Best Toilet Paper Protection (Video)

Some things aren’t going to change much in the wilderness; you are still going to need toilet paper.  You might even have a greater need for it.  The toilet paper that you bring with you won’t be safe like it is hanging from the wall in your bathroom.  You are going to have to protect it.  So far every method of toilet paper protection I have seen is either so obvious it doesn’t need to be addressed, or it adds size to the toilet paper which will make it more difficult to carry with you.  This video demonstrates an awesome […]

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3 Necessary Skills for Long-Term Grid Down Survival

3 Necessary Skills for Long-Term Grid Down Survival

Being able to start fires and build lean-to shelters will keep you alive for short-term survival in the wilderness, but if the world as we know it comes to an end it’s going to take a lot more to make it.  You will need to be able to repair and replace your gear, your clothing, and build long-term shelter.  But those skills are still dependent upon other skills.  If you really want to be able to live in a world without modern technology then you will need to have a working knowledge of these three skills at least.   Blacksmithing […]

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Saws vs Axes

Saws vs Axes

There is no tool that can equally perform all tasks.  But the more versatile the tools that you carry are, the fewer tools you’ll need to carry and the lighter you pack can get.  One tool that is compact, light, and versatile is a folding saw.  Without suggesting that it can replace the time-tested ax, here is a comparison for you to consider when putting together your gear for “bugging out” or wilderness survival.   A folding saw, even a large one, will take up much less space than an ax. Folding saws can be carried inside of your pack so […]

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Pignut: Wilderness Survival Food

Pignut: Wilderness Survival Food

Pig nuts is not the most appetizing name, but Conopodium majus doesn’t sound that tasty either.  Regardless of what you want to call them, pig nuts can be a great source of survival food  in the wilderness.  They can be found all over Europe and North America.  You can gather then using only your fingers, and they can be eaten raw after peeling the skin around the “nut”, which is actually part of the root.  Here is a short video that shows the plant at various stages of growth, making it easier to identify, and at the end it shows […]

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Cost of Being Armed   

Cost of Being Armed  

  There is no price that one can put on their life, and therefore their safety.  But that being said, it’s not cheap.  The cost being armed adds up, and many don’t calculate the cost prior to beginning.  This can leave you struggling with bills, and still not able to legally carry your firearm.  Let’s take a look at a modest estimate of the costs involved in getting armed.   The first step should be to train. This doesn’t mean that you have to become an expert, but only that you fire enough rounds through enough firearms to be able […]

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Fishing for Birds

Fishing for Birds

If you are surviving in the wilderness, especially in the forest, you are likely to have greater access to plant based food than meat.  But meat is going to be crucial to provide you with protein, fat, and the energy you need to perform exhausting tasks like covering miles of rough terrain, gathering wood, and building shelter.  But it is possible to use some of the available vegetation to acquire meat.  Here is one possible method to catch birds with berries or nuts, and a little paracord.   The first and most important step is observing birds in the area […]

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Fortifying Your Home Against Attack

Fortifying Your Home Against Attack

Whether triggered by post-disaster looting or by “peaceful protests” turned riots, you could find your home targeted for attack.  With proper planning, you can protect your home from a myriad of attacks.  Your location, home design, and access to resources will determine your implementation, but here are a few basic themes that can be adapted to suit most people’s security needs.   Channelizing Landscape The idea behind channelizing landscaping is that it is easier to protect your home from attack if you can control which direction the attack will come from and focus it to a point that you can easily […]

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What Makes a Good Campsite?

What Makes a Good Campsite?

Finding a proper site to make camp, whether you are in wilderness survival scenario or just out in the woods for fun, can make the difference between a good night’s sleep and a total nightmare.  But what is that you should look for in a campsite, and what should you avoid?  Ultimately you are going to have to make do with what is available, but here are some principles to keep in mind when you are looking for a place to bed down for the night.   Avoiding dangerously low night-time temperatures is paramount. For this reason you should avoid […]

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3 Ways to Remove a Splinter

3 Ways to Remove a Splinter

Whether just in the back yard, or worse yet, in a wilderness survival situation, getting a tiny splinter under your skin can cause you big problems.  The pain can be distracting and make necessary tasks difficult or impossible.  If left unaddressed the splinter can lead to infection which could, if you are unable to access medical help, lead to death.  In order to prevent something so small from causing you big problems get rid of any splinter as soon as you can.  Here are 3 ways to get a splinter out easily in different situations.   Fingernail Clippers If you […]

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What Not to Hoard for Post-Disaster Survival

What Not to Hoard for Post-Disaster Survival

If you are the kind of person that likes to be prepared, planning and storing for disaster or the end of the world as we know it can get out of hand.  You can waste resources, time, energy, and space on storing items that won’t offer you much benefit when the time comes to rely on them.  Worse, you might start to develop a survival strategy that includes, or is even dependent upon these items.  Everyone’s situation is different, and everyone’s needs are too, but here is a list of items that unless you have good reason to do so, […]

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Fast Action Control Techniques   

Fast Action Control Techniques  

When there is any other option, it’s always advisable to stay out of a conflict and to avoid a deadly encounter.  If we see a situation that might escalate we should call law enforcement. But is situations after a disaster or in any “grid down” scenario, law enforcement might be overwhelmed or otherwise unable to respond.  So what would you do in a situation like that?  You don’t want to have your only two options be doing nothing at all, or deadly force. In this video, which is mainly geared toward law enforcement, we see demonstrations of what the instructor […]

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Practical Situational Awareness

Practical Situational Awareness

When talking about self-defense and safety, situational awareness is always going to come into the conversation.  Having good situational awareness will allow you to avoid danger entirely or at least respond to it quickly so as to increase your odds.  But what exactly are you supposed to be aware of?   When The easiest thing to be aware of that has a direct effect upon your safety is the time.  If it’s dark out, there is an increased chance of violent crime, but there’s more to it than that.  Is it a holiday weekend?  If so it’s likely that there […]

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Simple Tips to Avoid Ticks

Simple Tips to Avoid Ticks

Ticks aren’t just creepy little bugs, they are also the harbingers of disabling and even deadly disease.  Most people know about Lyme’s disease, but ticks in North America can transmit 15 serious illness.  Some of the diseases are newly discovered, leaving open the possibility that there could be more illnesses spread by these parasites than we know about today.  But there are steps that you can take to protect yourself and your family if you are headed out into tick country.  Here are a few of those precautions.   Avoid Them Ticks tend to be, though not always, in predictable […]

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Morse Code (Infographic)

Morse Code (Infographic)

Morse code was developed in the 1830’s to transmit language over the then new telegraph.  The basic premise of Morse code is similar to binary code, using on and off.  The main difference is that Morse code has a “long on”, represented as a dash, and a “short on”, represented by a dot, with blank space between letters and words. Communication technology has come a long way since then, yet we all know that SOS means.  It is the internationally recognized signal for distress.  While learning the whole alphabet in Morse code could come in handy, knowing SOS is by […]

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Eating Snow Myth

Eating Snow Myth

There is probably no category of knowledge with more myths stuffed in than survival skills.  Survival myths are all over, they get repeated word of mouth around the campfire, find their way online (I’ve even repeated this one), and even taught by experienced survival trainers.  How does this happen?  Someone says something that sounds good, even scientific, and it just gets repeated by those who believe it, nobody really wants to go against it because unlike other categories of knowledge, if you get this stuff wrong you could die.  So with the threat of death on the mind, few people […]

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Empty Hand Defense Against a Knife Attack

Empty Hand Defense Against a Knife Attack

  Despite what Tim Kaine thinks, guns weren’t responsible for the terrorist attack at Ohio State University yesterday.  In fact, a gun is what stopped that attack, luckily before any victims could be killed.  But with idiots like Tim Kaine running around creating “gun free” and target rich environments knowing how to defend yourself against a knife attack with “empty handed” skills is an important aspect of self-defense.   Distance No amount of training is going to make fighting a knife-wielding attacker a safe prospect.  The best thing you can do from the start of the attack is to create […]

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Caring for Your Ax

Caring for Your Ax

Having an ax in the wilderness can be the difference between surviving or thriving.  But like all gear, it can’t take care of you if you don’t take care of it.  To keep your ax in optimal shape for a long life (of both your ax and you), follow these easy steps.   Handle These days there are plenty of survival axes and hatches on the market that have “indestructible” handles made from synthetic materials, and some of them come pretty close to living up to the hype of being unbreakable.  But for those that opt for a wooden handled […]

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Fatwood Firestarter (Video)

Fatwood is basically wood with a high resin content.  This means that there are natural chemical accelerants in the wood.  These accelerants will make it possible to light a fire with only material available to you in the wilderness in conditions that would otherwise be difficult or impossible.  This video describes and shows how to find fatwood, process it for kindling and tinder, and demonstrates how effective it is as starting a fire.  Having this knowledge in your pack could be the difference between a warm night and a long, cold, wet night.   If you liked this, you might […]

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3 Pistol Drills You Can do at Home

3 Pistol Drills You Can do at Home

Depending on what caliber pistol you have, and where you live, going to the range can become an expensive hobby fast.  While there is no substitute for live-fire to train accuracy, speed of fire, and gain comfort for beginners, not all training requires going to the range.  In fact, there are aspects of defensive pistol training that are crucial to self-defense and don’t require firing a single shot.  Here are 3 drills you should be doing to increase your defensive pistol skills that can be done at home.   Draw from Concealment You won’t be able to use your gun […]

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Coconuts for Survival

Coconuts for Survival

The main advantages to survival in the tropics are warmer weather, higher availability of water, and higher availability of food.  But simply because water and food are available doesn’t necessarily mean that you will be able to access them.  Having the right equipment helps, but having the knowledge of what to look for and how to use it is even more important.  One of the best sources of both food and water in the tropics are coconuts, but getting to those life-giving resources isn’t easy if you don’t know how.   What to Look For Not all coconuts offer the […]

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