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For so long we have all watched the media’s demonization of American citizen’s that enjoy a lifestyle of preparedness and self reliance. What is so radical about prepping? Why does the media choose to spin this in the light that they do? It makes no sense to demonize people that want to be responsible for not only themselves but their family and community.

Lets just take a minute to exam what prepping is and where the mindset came from. Many people wrongly label preppers as Doomsday preppers, but the real fact of the matter is that they just want to be self reliant. It has nothing to do with preparing for the end of the world, but the constant barrage of disparaging news has only fueled many normal everyday people to return to the ways of our ancestors and regain that sense of security by providing for their family. Most preppers don’t have years worth of food stockpiled but they do have the skills necessary to preserve the food they have access to for long periods should they need them. They are gardeners, canners, trappers, hunters, fisherman, and much more.

 

Prepping is just a modern adjective for what was common place in almost every household in America less than half a century ago. It was the way of life for most and not something sensationalized by our perverse media. It is common knowledge that the media has mainly consisted of city dwellers that live on the east or west coast and they have no real common connection with backwoods people who still carry on these self reliant traditions today. This is one of the many reason prepping is now considered something radical, when in the past it was just good ol self reliant living. People fear what they don’t understand and since our media is largely run by un-prepared idiots with no understanding of a self reliant lifestyle, they choose to demonize what they don’t understand by labeling it fear mongering. Let me ask you this, “Are you the ant or the grasshopper”. Will you be the one mocking people for others attitudes of preparing and then ask them to come in their home when the metaphorical winter arrives? Or will you be the ant and make preparations for your households future?

Plain and simple, you are a fool to not have some kind of preparations and some type of training in survival should you ever need these skills. It should be the foundation of all other training types, and a person should have the training to be able to survive before anything else because it takes precedent to all other skill sets in my humble opinion. Many people have the mindset that they will learn these skills when the need arises, but what they don’t realize is when that day comes it will be too late. Your neighbors and the ones you thought you might depend on if the stuff ever did hit the proverbial fan will take care of themselves and say the hell with you. Regardless of whether you ever have a true need for these skills they are essential to have because they help us to understand where our resources come from and the hard work involved in leading the American lifestyle we live. Connection with the foundations of our society is essential to its unity and prosperity, if we ever have hopes as succeeding as a fruitful nation.

Even if you feel no need whatsoever to be prepared for hard times, you should realize that this type of mindset isn’t about being prepared for the doomsday. It’s about cultivating a mindset of independence and self reliance that will foster feelings of joy that can’t truly be matched by other endeavors. There is no greater feeling than to know you can grow, cultivate, harvest, hunt and gather all the things you need. It’s a sense of accomplishment that will inspire feelings of great joy to know that you are independent and have no needs from anyone or anything. Regardless of whether the world crashes down or not, it’s just good to know that you have created something great with nothing more than the work of your hands and the use of God’s great bounty that he has left here on earth for us to be good stewards over!

This debate has been raging since the two ideologies started to become more mainstream more than a decade ago. With increased strife and turmoil in the news, it’s becoming increasingly more important to be well prepared for anything that might happen. It doesn’t matter what you’re prepping for but it does matter how you prep and the way you train. I’ve always said that training trumps gear and I continue to preach that philosophy. The problem with prepping is that you have essentially traded once source of dependence (the grid) for your own source of dependence (your own stockpiles). While I do agree that it is absolutely essential for people to have some basic preps, I also think many people neglected contemplating the fact that what happens if your preps are compromised. The more preps you have the more you have to defend and the less mobile you are. Which makes you an automatic non moving target, i.e. a sitting duck! What if the area you live in must be evacuated because of some disaster or other man made problem. Then what? What does a prepper do when he has to leave his stockpile of preps? And if you don’t have to leave the area, then how do you plan to protect your stockpiles from people who didn’t prepare?

Security is the number one issue in a disaster and by having stockpiles you have now become a target for all the friends and family members that know you’re a prepper. They will be showing up on your doorstep and I promise when they haven’t eaten for a week, you saying “no you can’t eat my food”, will not be an acceptable answer to them. And since most people’s idea of prepping is to buy guns and ammo, you had better believe that people will be taking what they want and not asking for it! And that’s just the first wave of people, next will be the criminals and gangs that have been running surveillance on you.  What are your plans then? And remember, your own guns will only protect you so long because people will figure out how to beat your static defenses should they become hungry enough. Guaranteed!

That is why here a SIGMA 3 Survival School we emphasize that a person, first get themselves some very basic food preps such as 3 months of rice and beans and then begin training their mind instead of hoarding stockpiles of food and ammo. Regardless of what many preppers might believe there is no situation that I can imagine other than the end of the world as we know it (TEOTWAWKI), that you wouldn’t be able to survive from the land having some basic training. Yes much of the larger game and many small game species may be wiped out as a viable food source very quickly if thousands of people had to live off the land out of necessity. But there will never be a lack of the less desirable food sources available in the wilderness such as bugs, rats, wild edibles, fish, etc. Regardless of what happens there will be no lack of these calorie sources. Which makes this the most full proof plan for a food source should you be required to live from them. I honestly don’t think the other more desirable food sources would be wiped out simply because most people are ignorant as to how to get them without all their modern implements and the simple fact that animals get wise extremely quickly to humans hunting them. But even if there are a lack of larger game, then survivalism still wins out over prepping as far as being the most full proof plan for an extended to survival scenario in my humble opinion.

For example, one of our primitive survival instructors actually lived off the land for over two years with no modern tools and he did this implementing basket fish traps and foraging techniques. His diet mainly comprised of fish, wild edibles, bugs, and the occasional red meat source. If someone can live off of these techniques for over two years with no modern tools, then surely someone with a full bug out kit as demonstrated in our Diary of Survivalist series can surely live off the land well with a little bit of training. Another bonus to survivalism over prepping is the fact that our survival training brings us closer to the land and helps provide a great sense of appreciation for what we have here on the earth. Through this training it gives you a sense of security that can’t be provided through any other types of training. When you are a well rounded survivalist, you know that no matter what happens that you will always be able to provide for your basic needs of shelter, water, fire, and food. And that personal sense of absolute self reliance with only my greatest tool at my side (my mind), I know that I will be taken care of no matter the circumstances. Prepping just gives me something else to worry about and another way to dump my money down an endless hole of never ending spending. Survivalism costs nearly nothing, whereas most prepping costs a fortune.

This is why I incessantly preach that the mind should always take priority to the tangible items that we buy and even if you do have preps then you should first know how to defend them and next know how to replace them should they become compromised. When prepping fails you have to have survivalism as a backup! So buy your rice, beans, and ammo but don’t neglect the most important factor and that is your training! Training is the end all and be all of preparedness and if you train all aspects of staying alive then it doesn’t matter what situation you are thrown into because you know you will be able to survive. But you will only be able to survive with the right mindset and the best training you can get. All things can be accomplished with the right training, so come join SIGMA 3 Survival School and get prepared!


Diary of a Survivalist- Bugging Out

Let me first define what the Diary of a Survivalist series was intended to do. I’ve been hearing for years from preppers that it really isn’t possible to live off the land long term for survival in a SHTF situation. That has always been a preposterous idea and our goal was to prove just how wrong this idea is. Its not only possible to survive off the land but with some limited training and equipment you can make it easy and comfortable. Now it is difficult to survive completely primitive with no real modern tools, but if you are equipped with a proper bug out bag then life can be very easy. Here is a quick rundown of the minimum essential items that should be in every bag.

Shelter- I prefer to carry a lightweight tarp because of the diverse amount of uses they have. Tents will never match up to a good basha tarp, except for their ability to keep out bugs. But you can’t have a fire with a tent and a mosquito net for your head will negate all the advantages of a tent over a tarp. So get a good tarp.

Water- The one item everyone should have in their bag is a good water filter. My favorite filter is expensive but it will filter 13,000 gallons of water, which means it won’t ever go out on you. The best one on the market is Katadyn Pocket Filter and if you have the money should be something everyone buys. The next most import thing is to make sure you have a stainless steel bottle, because you can boil water in it as well as carry it. I also recommend a bladder of some type and the best one on the market is probably the dromedary bag. Iodine also comes in handy when you are feeling to lazy to filter or boil your water. But should be used in very limited quantities.

Fire-This can be a difficult task if you aren’t well trained in how to get tinder from the land. So I recommend everyone get

some training on primitive and modern fire craft. But a flint and steel and cotton balls will do the trick every time. I also love the fire piston and regard this as one of the best methods to make fire. The bic lighter should also never be forgotten because it is cheap and you can carry several of them.

Food-If you are going to carry food in you BOB, I like to carry some peanut butter and maybe some honey. This is an

Too Easy!

extremely high calorie and protein food that will give you much needed energy in a small container. It can also be used as bait for almost anything. But my main source of food is going to come from the land. That’s why I carry a trapping kit, fishing kit, and .22 rifle. With these items I can easily procure meat and you don’t need much training to be able to catch food with these items time and time again. Combine these things with wild plants knowledge and you will eat like a king. If you don’t have wild plants training then you better get some! It is the only food that won’t run away from you.

Tools- Your most important items are your tools because they enable you to live off the land easily and effectively. Anything can be done primitively but it takes substantially more time and effort. You absolutely must carry a couple of good knives. Either a large knife/small knife setup or a small knife/small axe setup. I also recommend carrying a lightweight pack saw such as the Bahco Laplander. These little saws make quick work of medium diameter limbs and small cutting chores. You have to carry cordage also. These are must have items if you want to thrive instead of survive.

Take a look at these videos and watch our progress to through this week long experiment and see what it takes to survive in the wild with a well designed bug out kit. We can teach you how to do this with only a few classes and you will be able to survive with minimal equipment for the long term in almost any environment. Please subscribe and comment.


Here is our Video Documentary of surviving off the land

(The video will lay out my complete bug out kit)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jOfUzNxr7fQ

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cu0pc489L6I

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=47EkXCATOjo

(This is the story of our Newest Primitive Survival Instructor Josh Hamlin, he has an immense amount of real life survival experience and will be teaching at our wilderness survival classes to pass on his knowledge to SIGMA 3 Survival students)

If you haven’t read part one or two then click below!

Alone in the Wilderness Part 1

Alone in the Wilderness Part 2

 

After this, I found a cure for the loneliness in the woods.  I came across a hiker.  I was excited, because he was a Native American, and so am I.  I walked up and greeted him, and he gave me a hesitant and perplexed “uh, hi”.  Looking back, I can see why he was so startled.  I had a big beard, because I hadn’t shaved in months, and to make matters worse, I was wearing a loin cloth.  His name was Rick, and he was a member of a Native American church.  Many Native American churches have brought old rituals into their practice of Christianity, and Rick performed sweat lodge ceremonies for Native American Christians.  I showed him my camp.  We bonded and became great friends, which was good, because he came to visit me, and he brought others.  Now, I had friends who valued my quest to find the old ways and who could embrace the spiritual aspect as well.

A group of soldiers came across me, too.  They played paintball to practice warfare.  They gave me a challenge to take a 5 minute head start.  They were to track me and shoot me.  I ran over the roughest terrain I could find and hid in a small cave certain that they wouldn’t find me.  I was wrong.  Within a few minutes I found myself being pelted with paintballs.  I don’t’ remember these guys names.  I just called them the “paintballers”.

One of the worst struggles in the wilderness is insects.  When you’re in the wilderness, don’t be afraid of the dark or of Bigfoot…be afraid of mosquitoes.  I tried every plant I knew to keep them off, and they worked…for a few minutes.  Then I would sweat, and here they would come again.  I got so desperate that I actually covered myself in a blanket during the heat of summer just to block the bugs.  I breathed through a small hole left for my mouth.  When I woke up, my lips were swollen like a clown’s.  Those things are relentless.  The only thing I ever did that was significantly effective was sleeping right on the river.  There was a wind on the river, and I think that kept their numbers down.  If you are planning on a time in the wilderness, just plan on enduring mobs of mosquitoes, because it’s a fact of life out there.

I had another encounter with the brutality of predation, and again, it had a profound impact on me.  At one time, there had been a homestead out there.  The structure was long gone and nature had reclaimed the land but evidence was still there….daffodils and yucca grew in a square  around my camp sight and a square hole of concrete went into the ground. The hole was about 2 feet wide 3 feet long and 4 feet deep. it was an eye sore and i wanted it gone so i decided to fill it up…i had thrown lots of sticks into the hole which rested in there like a ramp and i used the whole as a trash can for my fish bones. One evening in the fall around dusk i heard a loud cracking sound and i ran out of my shelter to see that an old coon had tried to climb down into that hole after the fishbones and the sticks had broken and he was trapped. MEAT!  I grabbed my rabbit stick and went after him. I like coons, and i didn’t want to kill him, but he was so fat and I knew I would regret it if i didn’t so i killed him.  He was a fierce warrior and tried hard to jump out and get me but he was just too fat. He didn’t try to jump out of the hole away from me.  He tried to get out of the hole on my side. He didn’t run he fought. I didn’t want to hurt him so when i hit him I did it lightly and said sorry after each blow. but because I wasn’t using enough force I only prolonged his suffering.  I had to hit him probably 60 times before he finally surrendered his spirit. His body shook with convulsions as he died, and I again felt like a murderer.  I pulled him out of the whole and his eyes were open and it felt like he was staring at me hatefully, so i cut off his head and took it away from camp and buried it.  I felt the predator well up inside me, and I howled like a wolf and cried my eyes out as I cleaned the animal.  After my trauma subsided I began to be really interest in the insides of the animal. Did you know that a raccoons penis is a hook shaped bone?  Well i didn’t before then, but I saved it and made a necklace out of it. I also saved his skin, and the amount of fat on his skin was astounding.  There was tons of  fat on the inside of his skin.  I saved the fat and made a lamp from it. The meat i roasted on the fire and ate all in one sitting. it was extremely tough but delicious.

Winter was a dull time.  The leaves had fallen, and most of the birds had left.  The animals that were still awake were less active.  It wasn’t fun.  It was cold.  I had very little clothing because I had gotten robbed.  I didn’t do much of anything but lay in bed in my shelter and feed sticks to the fire.  It never got so cold that the pond froze so my fish trap was still working, but it was slower in the winter and caught fewer fish.  The insects were all dead and i didn’t have much to eat.  I knew where some Solomon’s Seal was when it was alive, so I still gathered the roots of it long after it was gone.  I still had a small but constant supply of fish so between the fish and the Solomon’s Seal roots, I never starved but i did starve for variety.  I didn’t really need that much energy though because I only left my shelter to go get fish, roots and firewood. We had a one big snow while I was out there, and I got snowed into my shelter for about a week (I had no shoes), but it melted off and the winter slowly faded into spring again.  The cycle began again.  Spring beauties reminded me that my year was over.  I packed my stuff and the next time Rick came to visit i left the mountain with him.

I left my mountain and went back into the hustle and bustle totally to meet the hectic pace of it all.  The sounds of the city, the chaos, the buzzes and humming sounds everywhere. The traffic and the crime, the dirty looks from strangers, rape and murder on the news, miserable people drudging on in miserable jobs. There was also happiness and smiles from strangers and contentment from some people, but they were few and far between.  I had fit in here before, or at least I had pretended to, but now it was different.  Now it was unbearable. After two weeks off the mountain I turned around and went home, back to my mountain.  I would still be there now if it weren’t for my mission: to teach as many people that will listen about the wonders of nature and ultimately the wonder of the CREATOR. I ultimately never came home fully from that journey because I ended up staying in the bush over two years. And I still frequently live in the woods for long periods of time in between odd jobs I do occasionally for walking around money. My life is to teach the methods of our ancestors and walk in the path of the old ones that came before us! And it will be my goal to make all the students that cross my path completely self reliant in any wilderness in the world!

(This is the story of our Newest Primitive Survival Instructor Josh Hamlin, he has an immense amount of real life survival experience and will be teaching at our wilderness survival classes to pass on his knowledge to SIGMA 3 Survival students)

If you haven’t read part one then click below!

Alone in the Wilderness Part 1

 

It rained for days, and I had built no shelter.  I took refuge under an old bridge for a while, but the flood water rose, and I found no escape after that.  I sat by the pond again…just sitting in the rain….and waited it out.  I desperately needed a shelter, so I made a lean-to first.  It was not much, but it worked until I could get something better.  I was ready for an upgrade pretty quick, so I made my way up the hill a little to where it leveled out into a flat.  I built a wickiup in only a few hours.  Whenever the weather was nice, I slept by the pond, but when it rained I moved to my wickiup.  The shelter was leaky and far from perfect, but it was better than sleeping in pouring rain, so I counted it a success.  With shelter, food, fire, and water taken care of, I began to enjoy my life in the wild.  Things got easier, I had plenty of fish in my trap consistently, and I had a shelter.  I began to be able to relax and enjoy watching the animals.  There were a few beaver in the pond, and I enjoyed the comedic company of goofy armadillos running around my camping area as well.

My fish trap caught a turtle about that time, and I came to grips with another struggle: the brutality of predation and feeding myself on animal meat.  For some reason rodents and fish didn’t trigger my sympathy, but when I saw that a turtle had drowned in my trap, I actually tried to resuscitate it with CPR.  I was overcome with grief, and actually broke down crying.  Your psychology in survival can really cause you to feel for life much more passionately than in our modern society. You can feel free to laugh a bit, because it’s a bit funny to me now looking back, but you should know that it was a real struggle at that time.  I’m not a cruel person, and this was a healthy struggle to do what I needed to do in nature to feed myself.  I cooked and ate the turtle with all the reverence and respect due our animal brethren. I then altered my fish trap so that it would have air space above the water, so that the turtles would not die in it, but truth be told the turtle meat was so tasty that I cooked and ate every turtle that got in my trap after that.

Not all went smoothly.  Once, when I had been out scouting the landscape, I returned to find my books stolen, along with some baskets I had woven .  I was furious, and I looked for tracks, but I’m not the most talented tracker, and I never found who did it, which was probably a good thing for them.  I decided that I needed a weapon, so I made an axe out of the flint that I had brought with me, and I made a bow out of a small butternut Hickory tree.  Making the bow was laborious, but it brought me a lot of entertainment when I finally completed it.

Having made and an axe, I decided to build a better shelter.  I decided to make a wigwam, and that shelter requires a lot of cordage.  50 feet of cordage doesn’t go very far, so I had to wind some more.  I found myself winding cordage every single night, and there was never enough.  The wigwam frame only took a few days, but the thatching had to be grass, and the grass was a long way off and up a hill.  I was in no hurry, so I didn’t work on it too much, which is why the thatching took several months!

With a fish trap that was consistently productive, plenty of edible plants that I was familiar with, plenty of grasshoppers and crickets, and a shelter, my needs were met, and life was decent.  But in these situations solace turns into isolation which turns into loneliness.  In my case this somewhat challenged my identity and self-image.  I had always considered myself a loner, able to thrive without other people around.  I may have an independent streak, and I may march to the beat of a different drummer, but I found out quickly that I need others.  I was missing them, and I began to talk to the animals…then to the trees…then to the dirt and the sky.

This brings me to a life-changing spiritual experience I had in the wilderness, and my story would be incomplete without relating it.  Over thousands of years, thousands of spiritual seekers have taken to the wilderness for deep spiritual seeking, and I chose that path myself.  It shouldn’t be news to you that spending more time in nature will reveal just how connected everything in the eco-system is.  I began to really commune with the balance of nature and looked on in wonder as I lived in my place in that balance.  What could be more spiritual than that?  Like many people who think this way, I had turned to pagan practices, which placed a high value on nature and our communion with the wild.

Think of this: I hear bird alarm calls.  They would go out, and other birds would alarm in circles spreading through the forest.  I could stalk to the quiet spots and find the tracks of predators such as foxes or cats.  The concentric circles of alarms going through the forest, the relationship of predator to prey,  the uses I had for what nature freely handed me…I began to perceive purpose and intention behind the continuity I saw in nature.  It was so fierce, but so beautiful.  I understood it to be a work of art from the hand of a deliberate creator, not the impersonal energy source I had always thought it to be.  That personal creator showed up out there in the wilderness, and confronted all my preconceived notions of who it was.  There was a real challenge and struggle as I came to grips with the reality of God, the God of Abraham, the God I was brought up to believe was my bitterest enemy and the enemy of the wilderness and my people.  I finally just cried out to God, speaking right into the air: “God”, I said, “are you real?” I didn’t expect an audible answer, but I got one: “Yes.  I am the God of Abraham.”  I was filled with fear, and I literally trembled violently like many figures in the bible when they met God.  I asked one more question:  “Are you Jesus?”.  The answer came “Yes, I am Jesus whom you have been attacking.”  He showed me visions of all the people He had sent me in His name.  “I have been calling to you, but you would not listen.”  The conviction grew so strong that I ended up on the ground begging God for His forgiveness.  The voice stopped talking, but God lifted me up and hugged me.  The voice has never spoken again, but I immediately left the mountain and headed to a church where I procured a bible.  I went back to my mountain to study the bible, and I have been an avid student of the bible ever since.  The voice has not spoken to me since, but I have felt the reassuring hand of God on my shoulder during hard times.

 

Alone in the Wilderness Part 3

(This is the story of our Newest Primitive Survival Instructor Josh Hamlin, he has an immense amount of real life survival experience and will be teaching at our wilderness survival classes to pass on his knowledge to SIGMA 3 Survival students)   

 

Hello,

 

My name is Josh Hamlin.  I lived 2 years in the wilderness living off the land.  I was no stranger to the outdoors or to primitive skills by the time I set about the task, but you can only gain so much from practicing the individual skills within the safety net and comfort of civilization.  The time had come, and I had a need to place these skills in their context, physically and spiritually.  It will not surprise you that my deep reverence for nature had led me to practices of pagan spirituality.  I set out with the intention of sharpening my skills as a survivalist and strengthening my spiritual connection to the wild.  Both of these things happened, but not in the way I thought they would.  Then again, if I had known all that before-hand, I would not have needed to undertake the journey, would I?

I had someone drop me off near a place I used to go to get away as a child.  It was a hill near Tulsa, Oklahoma on the Arkansas river. It was a small area about 3 miles long and about a mile wide, but resources were plentiful, so the location was appropriate.  I had a few items with me.  I brought two dried gourds with me for water bottles.  I brought 50 ft. of hand-twisted cordage.  I brought some clothing and a blanket, since I would not be allowed to kill and skin large game.  Lastly, I brought parts I and II of John and Gerry McPherson’s Naked Into the Wilderness.

As the car drove away, all my romantic notions abandoned me, and the reality of the struggle that lay ahead set in.  This was it, and the task seemed insurmountable.  For all my training, I began to feel like a fool for even doing this.  Still, I had committed myself with my boasts, and I was determined not to return a failure.  You can dream all you want about living wild and free, and anyone can call themselves a “survivalist”, but if you’re going to really get at it, there is no way around it.  You will have to come face to face with the fear that I felt as I realized how very alone I was.

I immediately sat down near a small pond and did the most discouraging thing for anyone in this situation.  I sat in despair and waited to die.  Here was the unexpected twist: this was part of the process.  I sat there for 3 days straight having already given up on life.  On that third day, thirst paid me a visit, and the pond did not look so inviting.   There was a creek nearby, and I drank from it until the thirst was quenched.  It was then that I realized how hungry I was, so I set about planning to get food.  Understand this, though: I was still in despair and still welcomed death.  I did not do this with determination to survive, but rather I was lead by primal desire for food and water.  It was very basic and very immediate need that took over my mind and directed my actions.

My need for food led me to make a fish trap.  I had to cut down some saplings to make the trap, and I had no knife.  Cutting saplings with flint is no easy task, and it took me a long time.  In fact, it took me 2 days of work to get enough saplings to make the trap.  I used some of my cordage to lash the trap together, and I threw the trap into the pond.  I checked it the next day and found my trap empty.  Truly, nature did not owe me food.

Still hungry, I wove more cordage through the holes on the trap, the better to stop the fish from escaping, and threw the trap back into the pond.  I left my spot by the pond and returned to the creek, this time for crawdads to eat.  It wasn’t long before I caught several crawdads, but I needed to cook them.  There was an old Sycamore that had been overturned with the roots exposed.  Sycamore is a good wood for a bow drill fire and it had roots that were pointed upward which will help them dry, so I put it to use and made myself a fire.  I put the crawdads on the coals, cooked them, and had a tasty meal of one of my favorites.

I returned to the spot on the pond and checked my fish trap.  Several times I had wound more cordage into the trap to prevent the fish escaping, and my labors bore fruit.  Inside my trap was a blue-gill fish.  I ate it, re-baited the trap with its guts, wound some more cordage into some of the holes in the trap, and threw it back into the pond.  I turned a real corner in my situation with the fish trap.  It wasn’t long before my trap was reliably catching fish, and food was no longer a problem.  That was one need taken care of.  That’s when it began to rain.

Alone in the Wilderness Part 2

 

 

New Private or Small Group Packages! Since we have so many tactical courses on the board right now I wanted to make a special offer for those interested in wilderness survival! If you have an interest in wilderness survival training and the course you are interested in is not on the schedule then contact us to setup a custom class. You can pick any course from the wilderness survival course list including: the survival standard courses, shelter building, fire making, water procurement, food procurement (trapping fishing hunting), primitive cooking, knife only (more expensive), or any basic bushcraft course of your choosing. My recommendation for beginners is the standard courses. Contact Us for more details!

2 Day Custom Course: $295/person private lessons

4 Day Custom Course: $495/person private lessons

Notes: Groups will be given discount based upon size of the group, the larger the cheaper! These courses can be setup on almost any schedule as long as enough lead time is given for the founder to schedule. We will do the courses either at our primitive camp or some other location of your choosing elsewhere in the state. Extra charges for travel!

This is a  priority breakdown of how one should set out to start a survival situation with almost no gear and their knife!

 

First Day- Build a shelter the first morning and get the shelter to a comfortable level of warmth for your climate. It must be dry, warm, and provide a place to store things. Custom debris hut is usually first choice in most climates in our area. I will make sure that my shelter is located reasonably close to a water supply. While I am gathering shelter materials I should also use the opportunity to gather firewood for the fire at night as well. Next, I will begin making a fire with primitive bow drill or a hand drill with thumbhole strings to reduce energy consumption and make getting a coal easier. If I have suitable cordage then I will always go with bow drill first but if cordage is in very short supply then I do the hand drill. At the end of day one I will shift my focus to making several no carve pauite deadfalls and split stick figure four deadfalls. Set them out next to pack rat dens and near other high traffic areas for small game. Before I return to camp I should try to gather natural cordage material to bring back and when night time arrives I can make several feet of cordage around the light of the campfire. Note: Always make time to forage for edibles to and from different spots and make a throwing stick while out in case possible game opportunity presents itself!

 

Day Two- Begin the morning by re-stoking the fire and go check my nearby traps to see if the overnight traps caught me breakfast. Return to camp and begin either processing trapped game or begin improving your shelter while it is still cool. Shelter building is one of the more labor intensive parts of survival and should be done when the least amount of calories will be used. Then begin making more simple traps as well as a few more complex trap triggers for larger game. If there is fish nearby then immediately begin making fish traps because they are the easiest prey to catch. Bugs, worms, and anything smelly works for land and water traps. While you are out always be foraging for convenient wild edibles and collect any potential harvest the forest provides you with! The second day should almost be completely consumed by shelter improvement and food gathering. But don’t forget to stay hydrated!

 

Day Three- By day three you should have several dozen traps set out and producing food. This is your main focus until you have created enough food generation sources to provide you with enough fresh meat to eat on hand and enough extra to begin storing extra dryed meats, edibles, etc. Begin putting these things back for your next move. Every time you are out always make sure you are gathering materials when they become available. Don’t wait and come back later only to waste more calories. If you plan to leave your shelter and be on the move, then make sure you have stockpiled plenty of dried food goods for your journey plus a little more than you think you need just in case!

 

Day Four- When day four rolls around you should be more accommodated to your situation and should be at least providing yourself with a minimal amount of calories to survive without losing to much weight, if any! You should continue to improve on your situation adding new food generation sources and utilizing your areas resources to be prepared for whatever your endeavor may be. You should also have begun making things like drying racks and tools to use to make your work easier!

 

-In my experience, this generally turns out to be the general timeline of how long it takes to begin being truly self sustained in a known wilderness area. Everyday, is a snow ball effect of how your resources collect and you should take every free minute to improve upon your situation. At night time you should be making cordage and use any free time in a redundant manner to make the most efficient use of your time! When your basic needs are taken care of, then you move on to the higher primitive arts, such as tool construction. Stick with these timeline goals in mind and you will do good in almost any situation!

 

Summary: Day one make shelter near water,  make fire, and then make traps to gather food overnight while you are sleeping; Day two should be shelter improvement, foraging, and making as many traps as you can, especially fish traps; Day 3 Continue making traps, improving shelter, making cordage and start putting food back if you have any excess; Day 4 You should be self sustaining in most climates by this time and should be producing enough food so that you are not losing any weight. Don’t Forget to Stay Hydrated!

Okay. This is a serious topic and should be well thought out! Prepping depends a lot on your budget and your living circumstances. There are two survival philosophies: Bug In or Bug Out. Now even though I am a bug out practitioner I do believe it is more practical for most of the crowd to bug in! But let me clarify that I think people should have a good amount of food put away in case their is a food crisis or you are not financially fit enough to get food when hard times hits. So first is first, get yourself around 6 months worth of cheap staples like beans, flour and rice. This should not cost you much at all if you buy in bulk. For a few hundred dollars you can ensure that your family will have food and you can supplement that stockpile with foods you can gather in your area. Even in the city wild edibles are to be had everywhere, but they are bountiful in the wilderness.

Next investment I would make is to buy a good amount of conibear traps. At least 10- #110, 6- #220, 4- #330. Conibears are extremely effective traps and they last almost forever if you take care of them. They are lightweight and can be carried in a bug out bag and are more useful than almost anything you can have for putting food on the table. If properly deployed you could feed an entire family of four with just these traps. For instance, at our Primitive Hunting Techniques and modern trapping course we set out 4 #330 conibear traps and overnight we had two beavers in excess of 30 lbs. That is a lot of meat for only 4 traps and one 12 hour period. If you had all those traps out you could have more meat than you could eat if you knew where and when to trap, guaranteed! You will also want to buy some heirloom vegetable seeds and stockpile several kinds of different fruits and vegetables. Store them in your freezer to make them last longer and after each years harvest you can dry and keep the seeds!

After I got a stockpile of food together and a box of conibear traps then I would move on to building a bug out bag. And I am not talking about a 72 hour bag either. Put together a rucksack full of all the essentials one would need to survive on the move in the woods or an urban environment! This ruck should be complete and have everything you need! I know most people are most likely to bug in but the problem with bug in philosophy is that you are hiding all your eggs in one spot and if something happens that causes you to evacuate your area then all your stockpiles will do you no good. It is better to have a system for self sustainment than to depend solely on your household or caches for your needs! So first prepare to have to leave your home if necessary, but after your entire family is equipped and trained to use their kit then start focusing on storing things in your home.

Don’t ever let anyone tell you that prepping is crazy or that bad things will never happen in America. Be a student of history and look what has happened generation after generation! Just about the only thing you can depend on in history is that bad times always return. They come in waves and sweep the unaware out into the deep. So don’t be shark bait! As Maynard from Tool would say, “Learn to Swim” (from the song Aenema, check it out)!

 

Summary: Put back six months worth of food, buy conibear traps and heirloom seeds, put together a bug out bag for family and train them in the basics, learn techniques to live off land, and then begin bug in prepping for longer terms when finances allow. Don’t ever solely depend on your home for everything, you must have a system of self sustainment wherever you find yourself!

What is survival gardening? Survival gardening is making your garden invisible to those in your area by means of spreading the plants out over large areas and hiding them in spots that most are not likely to find. If you find yourself in a shtf situation, then you will not want your neighbors to know you have a huge garden and that you are eating good when they are starving. That is calling unwanted attention to yourself. Your goal is to be stealthy about all things and never let those around know you are fat and happy. Jealousy insights violence, so it is best to never let them know what you are up to. Never clump a bunch of the same crop all in one area. You have to use deceptive techniques such as hiding a small batch of plants behind vegetative barriers.

Plant species that are conducive to each other such as planting ivy type plants next to corn so that they can use the stalks to grow towards the sun. Underneath the corn you can plant sprawling plants such as squash which can actually help keep critters away from the corn. But you need make sure these clumps of plants are not noticeable and hidden in corners that get plenty of sun and nutrients. You can even use man made materials to funnel more rain water to individual areas.

Another extremely important factor is to consider animals and critter control. One way is to use chicken wire to wrap a fence around the circumference of the mini garden. Another more camo-ed version is to make a natural barrier with trees or debris. No matter how cautious you are about blocking these things off from the animals, it is inevitable some will get in. So, I suggest letting the garden act as bait for certain animals and then trap the heck out of the area. This will not only make this a vegetable source but it will also begin producing meat for you! In a shtf situation, you will not have the option to be picky about your gathering methods. So you have to optimize each food plot accordingly. And don’t forget to pick heirloom seeds only and make sure you always dry out plenty for the next year! Make your own fertilizer by mixing moist decayed leaf debris and scat to increase your yield! These methods should keep you fat and happy in bad days and come take a look at some of the courses we offer in this area if your interested in learning more!

Summary: Plant in a stealthy manner, use man made or primitive materials to funnel water and nutrients to plants, fence off from animals, plant like types and utilize ground area to the maximum, trap the area for large and small game, use heirloom seeds and dry out your seeds for next year, make your own fertilizer!

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