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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!

Have you ever watched the wise animals of the woods? Have you ever noticed that the smarter an animal is, the slower they usually move in there everyday activities? A wise ol buck is usually the last to enter a danger zone and the first one to leave. We should all take lessons from the sages of the woods. An old animal has to be incredibly diligent and mindful to survive many years in the wilderness. You will notice that other than moments when animals are playing that they are always conserving energy. Animals do not concern themselves with petty endeavors, only those that will sustain their life longer. Survival is all about expending less calories than you consume and as survivalists we should try to mimic the masters of the wilderness by following there example.

All creatures in the animal kingdom understand that for every extra movement or exertion of energy means they will have to find and consume more food. The old wise buck moves slowly and we should take our model from God’s creations when I say that we should slow down and be like the Ole Buck. Most animals you see killed are as percentages go, mostly from the very youngest of the harvest. The old Buck lives to be old because he moves slow and is prudent before he takes action. He thinks before he moves and is always aware of his surroundings.

As survivalists we must surrender to that code when we are immersed in the bush. Slow down and absorb your surroundings! Read the landscape so that you know what bounties it holds. That is why we practice the skills we teach heavily because when the time comes to survive then you must have mastered the technique in order the keep the Law of conservation of energy. The scout is deliberate and does all things with forethought. When you look at the woods open your eyes wider and don’t let yourself focus too much on one thing. By focusing, you cause your mind to be tunneled. If your vision is always tunneled then you will miss much of your environment. Focusing your mind on one thing is fruitful in modern endeavors but can be a liability in the woods. You should practice absorbing all the things in your environment like a computer, seeing all and hearing all but not focusing your attention to one specific thing. When you focus your thoughts to much on one thing you will miss other things happening in your area. See as the owl does and move as the wise ole buck.

My advice to all survivalists is to remember to watch the animals more in their daily pursuits. Notice how efficient each species is at surviving in their environment! Most people forget that the animals live in the wilderness all the time, and that they should be our true teachers on how to survive!

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