Survival Page Four


EMP Protection

EMP stands for “electromagnetic pulse,” and it’s essentially a big burst of electromagnetic radiation, which we know as electricity, magnetic fields, radio waves, WiFi, and all manner of other pulses and waves and whatnot.

Although much of this article is about protecting one’s own personal electronic items (especially regarding communications), it is important to remember that the greatest threat, by far, to the life and well-being of you and your family comes from the damage to electrical and electronic systems that are outside of your personal control: the national critical infrastructures.

The bulk of your EMP protection efforts must be directed toward protecting yourself from the results of the loss of the critical infrastructures that support our everyday lives. All of our national critical infrastructures are dependent upon the electrical grid and our electronic infrastructure.

This is necessarily a rather long article because of the large amount of things that must be addressed when confronting the loss of national critical infrastructures, and this article is only a primer. It does not cover everything.

Because of the inevitability of a large solar superstorm, we have to accept the fact that the current electric power grid upon which our lives depend is only a temporary infrastructure. This temporary infrastructure has served us very well, and we now have entrusted our very lives to it. Of course, it is possible to build a resilient electrical grid. In most countries, such as the United States, United Kingdom though, the will to make the electric grid resilient has been absent.

The fact that the electric power grid began as a convenience, but has become a necessity for sustaining life, is both one of the most beneficial, and one of the most dangerous, facts of 21st century existence.

We do not know how long the current power grid will last; but if it is not replaced by a robust permanent infrastructure in time, hundreds of millions of people will die when the electric power grid collapses simultaneously in many countries. How such a collapse occurs is very well known, and the methods to either prevent it, or to have spare transformers in place to fairly quickly repair it, are also well known. Although these preventive measures would not be terribly expensive, they would take some time to put into place; and those things have never been done.


Even those in flats or on a very low income can have a level of preparedness that will be of significant help. By buying an extra can of reasonably nutritious canned food every week or so, you can build up a food reserve — before you realize it — that will last you for at least two or three weeks, and probably much longer. Two or three weeks of “breathing room” after a disaster can give you great peace of mind and allow you to stop and think and plan for a future course of action (while the unprepared are all in a great panic). It is even possible that some additional help may arrive after a week or two. The most important thing is to store at least a two-week supply of drinking water. There are many plastic containers of all sizes that can be stored in a closet that won’t take up an excessive amount of space.EMP. The letters spell burnt out computers and other electrical systems and perhaps even a return to the dark ages if it were to mark the beginning of a nuclear war. But it doesn’t need to be that way. Once you understand EMP, you can take a few simple precautions to protect yourself and equipment from it. In fact, you can enjoy much of the “high tech” life style you’ve come accustomed to even after the use of a nuclear device has been used by terrorists—or there is an all-out WWIII. EMP (Electro-Magnetic Pulse), also sometimes known as “NEMP” (Nuclear Electromagnetic Pulse), was kept secret from the public for a long time and was first discovered more or less by accident when US Military tests of nuclear weapons started knocking out phone banks and other equipment miles from ground zero. EMP is no longer “top secret” but information about it is still a little sketchy and hard to come by. Adding to the problems is the fact that its effects are hard to predict; even electronics designers have to test their equipment in powerful EMP simulators before they can be sure it is really capable of with standing the effect. EMP occurs with all nuclear explosions. With smaller explosions the effects are less pronounced. Nuclear bursts close to the ground are dampened by the earth so that EMP effects are more or less confined to the region of the blast and heat wave. But EMP becomes more pronounced and wide spread as the size and altitude of a nuclear blast is increased since the ground; of these two, altitude is the quickest way to produce greater EMP effects. As a nuclear device is exploded higher up, the earth soaks up fewer of the free electrons produced before they can travel some distance. The most “enhanced” EMP effects would occur if a nuclear weapon were exploded in space, outside the Earth’s atmosphere. In such a case, the gamma radiation released during the flash cycle of the weapon would react with the upper layer of the earth’s atmosphere and strip electrons free from the air molecules, producing electromagnetic radiation similar to broad-band radio waves (10 kHz-100 MHz) in the process. These electrons would follow the earth’s magnetic field and quickly circle toward the ground where they would be finally dampened. (To add to the confusion, we now have two more EMP terms: “Surface EMP” or “SEMP” which refers to ground bursts with limited-range effects and “High-altitude EMP” or “HEMP” which is the term used for a nuclear detonation creating large amounts of EMP.) Tactically, a space-based nuclear attack has a lot going for it; the magnetic field of the earth tends to spread out EMP so much that just one 20-MT bomb exploded at an altitude of 200 miles could—in theory—blanket the continental US with the effects of EMP. It’s believed that the electrical surge of the EMP from such an explosion would be strong enough to knock out much of the civilian electrical equipment over the whole country. Certainly this is a lot of “bang for the buck” and it would be foolish to think that a nuclear attack would be launched without taking advantage of the confusion a high-altitude explosion could create. Ditto with its use by terrorists should the technology to get such payloads into space become readily available to smaller countries and groups. But there’s no need for you to go back to the stone age if a nuclear war occurs. It is possible to avoid much of the EMP damage that could be done to electrical equipment—including the computer that brought this article to you—with just a few simple precautions. First of all, it’s necessary to get rid of a few erroneous facts, however. One mistaken idea is that EMP is like a powerful bolt of lightning. While the two are alike in their end results—burning out electrical equipment with intense electronic surges—EMP is actually more akin to a super-powerful radio wave. Thus, strategies based on using lightning arrestors or lightning-rod grounding techniques are destined to failure in protecting equipment from EMP. Another false concept is that EMP “out of the blue” will fry your brain and/or body the way lightning strikes do. In the levels created by a nuclear weapon, it would not pose a health hazard to plants, animals, or man PROVIDED it isn’t concentrated. EMP can be concentrated. That could happen if it were “pulled in” by a stretch of metal. If this happened, EMP would be dangerous to living things. It could become concentrated by metal girders, large stretches of wiring (including telephone lines), long antennas, or similar set ups. So—if a nuclear war were in the offing—you’d do well to avoid being very close to such concentrations. (A safe distance for nuclear-generated EMP would be at least 8 feet from such stretches of metal.) This concentration of EMP by metal wiring is one reason that most electrical equipment and telephones would be destroyed by the electrical surge. It isn’t that the equipment itself is really all that sensitive, but that the surge would be so concentrated that nothing working on low levels of electricity would survive. Protecting electrical equipment is simple if it can be unplugged from the mains sockets, phone systems, or long antennas. But that assumes that you won’t be using it when the EMP strikes. That isn’t all that practical and—if a nuclear war were drawn out or an attack occurred in waves spread over hours or days— you’d have to either risk damage to equipment or do without it until things had settled down for sure. One simple solution is to use battery-operated equipment which has cords or antennas of only 30 inches or less in length. This short stretch of metal puts the device within the troughs of the nuclear-generated EMP wave and will keep the equipment from getting a damaging concentration of electrons. Provided the equipment isn’t operated close to some other metal object (i.e., within 8 feet of a metal girder, telephone line, etc.), it should survive without any other precautions being taken with it. If you don’t want to buy a wealth of batteries for every appliance you own or use a radio set up with longer than 30-inch antenna, then you’ll need to use equipment that is “hardened” against EMP. The trick is that it must REALLY be hardened from the real thing, not just EMP-proof on paper. This isn’t all that easy. The National Academy of Sciences recently stated that tailored hardening is “not only deceptively difficult, but also very poorly understood by the defence-electronics community.” Even the worlds Military have equipment which might not survive a nuclear attack, even though it is designed to do just that. That said, there are some methods which will help to protect circuits from EMP and give you an edge if you must operate ham radios or the like when a nuclear attack occurs. Design considerations include the use of tree formation circuits (rather than standard loop formations); the use of induction shielding around components; the use of self-contained battery packs; the use of loop antennas; and (with solid-state components) the use of Zener diodes. These design elements can eliminate the chance an EMP surge from power lines or long antennas damaging your equipment. Another useful strategy is to use grounding wires for each separate instrument which is coupled into a system so that EMP has more paths to take in grounding itself. A new device which may soon be on the market holds promise in allowing electronic equipment to be EMP hardened. Called the “Ovonic threshold device”, it has been created by Energy Conversion Devices of Troy, MI. The Ovonic threshold device is a solid-state switch capable of quickly opening a path to ground when a circuit receives a massive surge of EMP. Use of this or a similar device would assure survival of equipment during a massive surge of electricity. Some electrical equipment is innately EMP-resistant. This includes large electric motors, vacuum tube equipment, electrical generators, transformers, relays, and the like. These might even survive a massive surge of EMP and would likely to survive if a few of the above precautions were taking in their design and deployment. At the other end of the scale of EMP resistance are some really sensitive electrical parts. These include IC circuits, microwave transistors, and Field Effect Transistors (FET’s). If you have electrical equipment with such components, it must be very well protected if it is to survive EMP. One “survival system” for such sensitive equipment is the Faraday box. A Faraday box is simply a metal box designed to divert and soak up the EMP. If the object placed in the box is insulated from the inside surface of the box, it will not be affected by the EMP travelling around the outside metal surface of the box. The Faraday box simple and cheap and often provides more protection to electrical components than “hardening” through circuit designs which can’t be (or haven’t been) adequately tested. Many containers are suitable for make-shift Faraday boxes: cake boxes, ammunition containers, metal filing cabinets, etc., etc., can all be used. Despite what you may have read or heard, these boxes do NOT have to be airtight due to the long wave length of EMP; boxes can be made of wire screen or other porous metal. The only two requirements for protection with a Faraday box are:

The equipment inside the box does NOT touch the metal container (plastic, wadded paper, or cardboard can all be used to insulate it from the metal) and

The metal shield is continuous without any gaps between pieces or extra-large holes in it.

Grounding a Faraday box is NOT necessary and in some cases actually may be less than ideal. While EMP and lightning aren’t the “same animal”, a good example of how lack of grounding is a plus can be seen with some types of lightning strikes. Take, for example, a lightning strike on a flying airplane. The strike doesn’t fry the plane’s occupants because the metal shell of the plane is a Faraday box of sorts. Even though the plane, high over the earth, isn’t grounded it will sustain little damage. In this case, much the same is true of small Faraday cages and EMP. Consequently, storage of equipment in Faraday boxes on wooden shelves or the like does NOT require that everything be grounded. (One note: theoretically non-grounded boxes might hold a slight charge of electricity; take some time and care before handling ungrounded boxes following a nuclear attack.) The thickness of the metal shield around the Faraday box isn’t of much concern, either. This makes it possible to build protection “on the cheap” by simply using the cardboard packing box that equipment comes in along with aluminium foil. Just wrap the box with the aluminium foil (other metal foil or metal screen will also work); tape the foil in place and you’re done. Provided it is kept dry, the cardboard will insulate the gear inside it from the foil; placing the foil-wrapped box inside a larger cardboard box is also wise to be sure the foil isn’t accidentally ripped anywhere. The result is an “instant” Faraday box with your equipment safely stored inside, ready for use following a nuclear war. Copper or aluminium foil can help you insulate a whole room from EMP as well. Just paper the wall, ceiling and floor with metal foil. Ideally the floor is then covered with a false floor of wood or with heavy carpeting to insulate everything and everyone inside from the shield (and EMP). The only catch to this is that care must be taken NOT to allow electrical wiring connections to pierce the foil shield (i.e., no AC powered equipment or radio antennas can come into the room from outside). Care must also be taken that the door is covered with foil AND electrically connected to the shield with a wire and screws or some similar set up. Many government civil defence shelters are now said to have gotten the Faraday box, “foil” treatment. These shelters are covered inside with metal foil and have metal screens which cover all air vents and are connected to the metal foil. Some of these shelters probably make use of new optical fibre systems—protected by plastic pipe—to “connect” communications gear inside the room to the “outside world” without creating a conduit for EMP energy to enter the shelter. Another “myth” that seems to have grown up with information on EMP is that nearly all cars and trucks would be “knocked out” by EMP. This seems logical, but is one of those cases where “real world” experiments contradict theoretical answers and I’m afraid this is the case with cars and EMP. According to sources working at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, cars have proven to be resistant to EMP in actual tests using nuclear weapons as well as during more recent tests (with newer cars) with the US Military’s EMP simulators. One reason for the ability of a car to resist EMP lies in the fact that its metal body is “insulated” by its rubber tires from the ground. This creates a Faraday cage of sorts. (Drawing on the analogy of EMP being similar to lightning, it is interesting to note that cases of lightning striking and damaging cars is almost non-existent; this apparently carries over to EMP effects on vehicles as well.) Although Faraday boxes are generally made so that what is inside doesn’t touch the box’s outer metal shield (and this is especially important for the do-it-yourself since it is easy to inadvertently ground the Faraday box—say by putting the box on metal shelving sitting on a concrete floor), in the case of the car the “grounded” wiring is grounded only to the battery. In practice, the entire system is not grounded in the traditional electrical wiring sense of actually making contact to the earth at some point in its circuitry. Rather the car is sitting on insulators made of rubber. It is important to note that cars are NOT 100 percent EMP proof; some cars will most certainly be affected, especially those with fibreglass bodies or located near large stretches of metal. (I suspect, too, that recent cars with a high percentage of IC circuitry might also be more susceptible to EMP effects.) The bottom line is that all vehicles probably won’t be knocked out by EMP. But the prudent survivalist should make a few contingency plans “just in case” his car (and other electrical equipment) does not survive the effects of EMP. Discovering that you have one of the few cars knocked out would not be a good way to start the onset of terrorist attack or nuclear war. Most susceptible to EMP damage would be cars with a lot of IC circuits or other “computers” to control essential changes in the engine. The very prudent may wish to buy spare electronic ignition parts and keep them a car truck (perhaps inside a Faraday box). But it seems probable that many vehicles WILL be working following the start of a nuclear war even if no precautions have been taken with them. A major area of concern when it comes to EMP is nuclear reactors located in the US. Did you know that a little-known Federal dictum prohibits the NRC from requiring power plants to withstand the effects of a nuclear war. This means that, in the event of a nuclear war, many nuclear reactors’ control systems might will be damaged by an EMP surge. In such a case, the core-cooling controls might become inoperable and a core melt down and breaching of the containment vessel by radioactive materials into the surrounding area might well result. (If you were needing a reason not to live down wind from a nuclear reactor, this is it.) I would bet this is the case with UK reactors as well. Provided you’re not next door to a nuclear power plant, most of the ill effects of EMP can be overcome. EMP, like nuclear blasts and fallout, can be survived if you have the know how and take a few precautions before hand. And that would be worth a lot, wouldn’t it? Some initial thoughts on EMP protection from the US military packaging division. A continuously sealed metal barrier has proven to be very effective in preventing EM/HPM energy from reaching susceptible electronic or explosive components. Exterior packaging fabricated from plastic, wood or other fibre materials provides almost no protection form EM/HPM threats. The metal enclosure can be very thin provided there are no openings (tears, pin holes, doors, incomplete seams) that would allow microwaves to enter. Sealed barrier bags that incorporate a thin layer of aluminium foil and are primarily used to provide water vapour proof protection to an item, can add a great deal of resistance to EM/HPM penetration. A number of cylindrical and rectangular steel containers have been developed by the Packaging Division for a wide range of munitions, weapon systems and associated components. The cylindrical containers are end opening and the rectangular containers are top opening. All the containers have synthetic rubber gaskets that allow them to maintain a +3 psi environmental seal to the outside environment. The containers are constructed using seam welding to provide for continuous metal contact on all surfaces of the body assembly. The cover openings have been held to a minimum and the sealing gaskets positioned in a manner to allow overlapping metal parts to add additional protection to these areas. Microwaves are very adept at bouncing around and working their way into even the smallest opening. Tests of the cylindrical and rectangular steel containers used by this organization have demonstrated a high level of protection in preventing EM/HPM energy from entering the container. The key is to use a metal enclosure and eliminate or minimize any openings. Where openings are needed they should be surrounded to the greatest extent possible by continuous metal and in the case of a gasket, metal sheathing or mesh can be placed around the elastometer material or conductive metal moulded into the gasket. The closer the surrounding container comes to a continuous metal skin the more protection that will be provided. High quality gaskets, utilizing either a mesh or embedded conductive metal design, are very expensive. They add a magnitude of cost to a normal gasket and can easily double the price of a container similar to the ones mentioned above.

Urban Foraging Abandoned Cars for Survival

In all the disaster type movies you will see motorway’s full of abandoned vehicles, just like the city and town streets.

And their occupants are shown abandoning their vehicles and joining the never ending line of unfortunates trying to escape on foot.

Can you imaging what they have discarded within those vehicles? and by playing your cards right it could all be yours.

In any long-term survival scenario scavenging or urban foraging, as I call it, will play an important role in my post SHTF survival plans.

And I will tell you why.

Hollywood seems to show that when survivors run out of supplies they will need to select other sources for life saving supplies and searching abandoned cars is a good starting point.

Now in my mind this attitude is actually very wrong, because a lot of what could have been acquired will have gone off or have been attacked by four legged food hunters.

By leaving your scavenging until “You have to”, you lose out on the fresh foods that the previous owner had just bought from the supermarket, or that take-away meal, or those electrical devices full of much needed batteries etc.

Not forgetting a fully charged car battery and of course fuel, but there is so much more to benefit from.

Checking buildings for resources I think is useless as this is where everyone will turn once the shelves, so there will nothing left to find.

Building abandoned vehicles into your bug-out/survival plans is I would say if common sense.

Think about it there are over 33 million vehicles in the UK and over 300 million in the USA, and each one could have the items you need.

You will need some basic tools and the right eye to spot all the valuables hiding in those metal carcasses.

Before I tell you about the valuable items that you could find when searching abandoned cars, there are a few basic rules to follow:

Make sure that the vehicle is abandoned, there could be people living in them and you don’t need a fight.

Always have a lookup for when times are tense. It will be a lawless time, some will chose to become the law and they will not like the idea of people “stealing” from their land.

If you see someone coming, don’t stay around and try to justify your actions.

Before you start attacking the vehicle, you should first look for the keys and check if the vehicle will start. It’s much easier taking the car with you rather than to strip it.

Almost every car model will have something you can scavenge, but you should target cheaper cars when scavenging abandoned cars. They are generally easier to work with and disassemble.

Keep an eye out for commercial vehicles such as vans and work truck as they may contain valuable items a passenger car wouldn’t.

Always go for the items you need first. Time is a valuable resource post SHTF and you need to use it in your favour.

Remember you can always come back later and get the rest of the items you might need.

To me common sense says before you start searching abandoned cars for the parts I will mention, you should check the glove box, centre console and any other storage compartments available in the car.

You can find miscellaneous items that can become very useful in a survival scenario. Bottled water, medications, lighters, sanitizers and first aid kits are just a few examples of what you can find in abandoned vehicles.

Here are the items to look for:


This is probably the most obvious resource that one could scavenge from an abandoned car and most people will go for it first.

To get it out of the fuel tank you will need a small-diameter rubber hose, one or more jerry cans or 2.5 gallon water jugs and a piercing instrument.

When liberating fuel from abandoned vehicles the model of the car plays an important role and you should know what you have to deal with.

Newer vehicles have a screen or a valve that prevents the use of a hose to siphon from the gas tank.

If you come across this then look under the car, find the fuel tank and bore or punch a hole using a knife.

Pay attention and work with care as you don’t want to cause a spark.

Once you have pierced the fuel tank, place the water jug in the right position and let it fill.

You might need to make a second hole to help the gas flow more easily if you are in a hurry.

If luck is on your side, you might find a vehicle from the 1990s or even earlier. These vehicles may lack the protective screen from the tank and you will just need to pry the metal flapper near the opening out of the way.

Use the rubber hose and your mouth to siphon the gasoline, but make sure you don’t inhale too much of it as serious injuries may occur.

Doing this simply means you will end up having a precious resource that will help you greatly in a doomsday situation.

Jack and tools

You don’t need any advanced knowledge to get the tools from a car, you just need to know where to look for them.

Most cars will store these tools under the boot carpet, but you can also look under or behind the seats.

The jack is usually located with the tools and if that’s not the case, you have to look for storage compartments in the boot.

There are many ways to use these tools, but the steel lug wrench can be used as a prybar, blunt instrument or even as a weapon.

Carpet and upholstery

Vehicle carpets are thick, soft and insulated fabrics which make good materials that you can use in a survival scenario, say to insulate a shelter.

These materials can also be used for warm bedding, as blankets or shelter against the elements.

When scavenging abandoned cars, you should always look for floor mats and seat covers that are easily removable.

If someone got them before you, cutting away the upholstery is your only other option. Start with the headlining first as it provides one large piece of fabric.

Warning: don’t use these materials as kindling. They contain chemicals that will turn into toxic fumes once burned.


If you manage to find the jack and tools, it is time to take care of the tires. You should start first by looking for a spare tire since it will require less work.

You can find it inside or under the boot and in case it’s missing you will have to remove the other four wheels.

Removing a tire from its wheel can be quite a challenge for some.

Getting the tires from an abandoned vehicle is worth the trouble and there are many situations in which these tires can come in handy.

You can burn one to create a rescue signal after you let the air out of it. You can use tires to create a good shelter; use tires to create the exterior walls facing the sun.

During the day the tires will absorb the heat and will transmit it inside the living space during the night. Cut a tire in two and you now have an animal feeder.

You could use them as planters simply stack them together, fill them with dirt and plant the potatoes etc.

The sun will do the rest. There are many ways in which tires can be used and it’s all up to your imagination.


When scavenging abandoned cars you shouldn’t forget about the seatbelts. They are made of extremely strong durable nylon and can become excellent cordage if needed. Pull to unravel the seatbelt from its reel than cut it using a sharp knife. Seatbelts can be used for various needs, the same way cordage would be used.


To get the mirrors from a car you will need a screwdriver or a prior instrument. The exterior ones can be carefully pried out of their housing using a flat screwdriver or a knife.

The interior ones can be unscrewed from the roof. These mirrors are great for rescue signaling at long distance or they can be used to start a fire. You can also use the mirrors to help you with personal hygiene (examine debris in your eye or inspect an injury).


A car battery can provide long-lasting 12-volt electrical power and they can be used to jump start a car or even to start a fire.

In conjunction with a power inverter, a car battery can be used to power a variety of AC electronics such as mobile phones or radios.

To remove the car battery you first have to pop the bonnet and see what you are dealing with.

The location of the battery should be obvious, although some car manufacturers prefer to hide it with a plastic cover. If you want to take it with you, you will need to disconnect the tie-down bar and the terminal wires using a small wrench or pliers.


Automotive lights are great survival items because they can be wired directly to a 12-volt battery for instant, bright light.

If you know what you are doing you can remove an entire headlight assembly and use it to light your shelter.

You can remove just the bulbs themselves if you find it easier to do so. To remove the lights you will need a set of wrenches and a pair of needle-nose pliers. For most of the older car models, you can reach behind the car headlights and un-clip or twist the bulbs to pull them out of their housings.

You will need to cut two pieces of wire from the engine or scavenge them from other electronic devices and connect the positive and negative battery terminals to the corresponding bulb terminals.

Motor oil

Motor oil is an excellent lubricant for mechanical items and especially for your firearms.

Not to mention that you can use it in an oil burning furnace to provide heat for your shelter.

There are many uses for motor oil and it all depends on the survival situation you find yourself in. Getting the motor oil is simple and although you will have to jack up cars.

I would go for the pick up type vehicles first.

They provide enough ground clearance and you will save precious time. Once you are beneath the car you need to locate the oil drain bolt and remove it using a wrench. Keep the water jugs close and use it as a recipient to drain some oil into it.

Some will prefer to remove even the spark plugs and use them as glass-breaking tools, but I don’t think it’s worth the trouble.

If you are in a survival scenario and you need to get chunks or ceramic from spark plugs to break a window, you are doing something very wrong.

If society will collapse tomorrow the drivers will be gone after a few days or weeks, but their cars will still be there, waiting for you.

Scavenging abandoned cars for survival items is a good tactic to hoard items that will make your life easier in a world depleted of resources.

You never know what you might find in an abandoned car, so make sure you scavenge them if no other options are available.

Catapult or Slingshot Small Game Hunting
Like most British kids I played with a handmade catapult, hand made by me that is. Now OK, I say handmade but in truth it was a cut “Y” shaped branch of the right size with elastic bands, but you know, it actually worked.
The upgrade then was for a steel caty with bands fitted by the manufacturer.
Last year I was sent the Survivalslingshot from and I fell in love again with this form of hunting.
We as members of the preparedness community should consider slingshots and their effectiveness as a small game hunting tool, especially in a large-scale disaster scenario where food stockpiles may run out.
So let’s talk about slingshots and their usefulness as a disaster prep.
 Before we even get into this topic, we need to make a couple things very clear.
First, a slingshot is not a toy, it’s a weapon.
You should be taking just as many precautions and safety procedures with a slingshot that you would with any other weapon.
In fact, due to the inherent design of a slingshot, you will want to take even greater precautions, especially in eye protection. If you don’t believe me, go to YouTube and search for “slingshot accidents”. Warning: some of those videos are quite graphic.
Secondly, before the clever emails roll in, yes there are several other weapons that are better suited for hunting than a slingshot.
Depending on the situation though, there can be several advantages to using a slingshot over other types of hunting tools, which I will cover later.
The benefits of using a slingshot for hunting
On the surface it might seem that slingshots would be one of the worst choices for a hunting weapon.
They’re not nearly as powerful as a bow (let alone a firearm), they take a lot of practice to be accurate with, you have to be much closer to your target and they’re usually pretty limited as far as what kind of game you can really go after with it.
However, there are actually quite a few benefits for using a slingshot instead of a normal hunting weapon, including:
They are easier to use in an urban areas – IE you’re unlikely to get reported to the police for shooting a slingshot in your backyard.
They are legal to openly carry in most areas
They don’t attract nearly as much attention as a firearm or bow
They are one of the quietest ways to hunt game
Finding ammo for a slingshot can be as easy as picking up a rock off the ground
They have very few parts and can be made and maintained very easily
You don’t need any sort of documentation or licenses to own a slingshot
A commercial slingshot is a fraction of the cost of any other hunting tool
Slingshot hunting is very challenging and can teach you to be a better hunter all-around
In a SHTF, long-term disaster scenario, slingshots will be perfect for hunting small game when ammunition and gun parts are scarce and you want to be as quiet as possible.
Follow the seasons  
Just because you’re hunting with a slingshot doesn’t mean you’re exempt from hunting seasons. Although in many areas small game hunting is legal year-round, some countries have specific seasons when you can hunt specific small game.
 Safety- slingshots really can kill you
 A slingshot is simply a modified form of a Sling, which has been used for hunting and even defensive purposes for literally thousands of years. It’s not a toy. It can kill someone.
Most commercial slingshots can shoot projectiles anywhere from 150-300 feet per second. Specialty hunting slingshots can actually reach over 400 feet per second.
Combined with the heavy weight of most slingshot ammo, this is more than enough power to kill someone.
Types of slingshots
There are several types of slingshots on the market today ranging from a simple plastic fork with cheap bands, all the way to top-of the line hunting slingshots outfitted with super-strength bands, stabilizing bars and even laser sights.
Usually with gear, the rule of thumb is that you get what you pay for, however it’s been my experience that slingshots are kind of an exception to that rule.
Some of the most expensive commercial hunting slingshots out there are pure JUNK.
They’re inaccurate and wear out faster than even traditional, forked stick, backyard-made slingshots.
It almost seems like the designers were much more concerned about making the thing look cool instead of actually making it functional.
In my opinion, the best slingshots are homemade. I’m not talking about a simple “Y” shaped stick in your backyard, but actually designing a slingshot out of high-quality material that fits your hand perfectly and experimenting with several band and pouch options until you have something that is tailor fit just for you and serves your purposes.
Types of slingshot bands
There are several types of pre-made bands you can buy for your slingshot. Most are made out of decent quality rubber and will last for at least a few months of normal use before noticing any decrease in performance.
That being said, a lot of people don’t actually recommend buying pre-made bands for slingshots. For one, they’re overpriced.
Secondly, slingshot hunting is, unfortunately, not that popular. Slingshots in general aren’t all that popular. When you buy a package of those replacement bands, it’s very likely they’ve been sitting on that shelf for over a year. For slingshot bands, that’s not good.
Your slingshot bands need to be changed regularly. Not only will they deliver a more consistent shot and velocity but it’s much safer this way.
Bands that have been sitting around a while will dry out and could even be cracked straight out of the package. There’s a real chance that it could break on your first shot and cause injury.
 So why not buy band material and make your own. It’s extremely simple.
The most common band material is called TheraBand Gold. It’s the industry standard for custom slingshot makers.
Hunting Slingshot ammunition
Yes, you can shoot rocks and pebbles out of your slingshot with no problem. It’s been done for generations. That being said, natural materials shouldn’t be your usual ammunition for a slingshot.
Rocks and pebbles are oddly shaped, have edges that could hurt your pouch and bands aren’t usually weighted correctly to give you consistent, accurate shot placement. Your best bet is to go with steel or lead shot.
Personally I like steel shot better for hunting. I believe it’s just a better round for the distances I like to shoot. Your experiences can and will be different depending on your setup. One major advantage steel shot has though is that it is magnetic, which makes it easier to collect after shooting it.
Don’t hunt if you can’t hit your target reliably
Hunting with a slingshot isn’t easy. You have to be much closer to your target since the slingshot doesn’t generate enough energy to keep the heavy projectile from falling mid-flight.
You also have to be experienced with approaching small animals without spooking them.
Additionally, slingshot ammunition doesn’t cause piercing damage, it causes blunt force damage. This means that you have to put your shots in an area that isn’t going to cause internal damage to your animal which can spoil your meat. This means headshots only guys.
 My rule of thumb for this is simple. If you can’t hit a target the size of a 2P piece consistently, keep practicing and don’t go out hunting. Killing an animal humanely is a responsibility of every hunter.
Continue practicing at varying distances from your target. Once you get proficient enough that you can hit a target the size of a 2P piece reliably, then you’ll be ready to take those headshots on small game.
The Deadly Enemies to Your Survival
When putting together survival kits, there are 8 enemies of survival to consider – no matter whether the kit is for someone going into the bush, or if the kit is being made for a teotwawki situation. Taking care of these eight issues by stocking up your kit well will go a long way to ensuring your survival in just about any survival situation.
Fear often leads to panic and panic does no one any good…in fact it often kills. The best way to temper fear is by preparing with proper survival skills and survival gear.
Survival skills help reduce fear because you know that you can take care of yourself in a survival situation. Without those survival skills people who are lost are often so scared they don’t know what to do. They’re scared of the animals, scared of the dark, scared of being without all of the comforts of civilization.
Survival gear helps combat fear because it gives you the tools that makes surviving easier.
Complacency is a bane of modern life. Complacency is dangerous because it lulls you into believing everything is alright and causes you to ignore clear signs of danger. A good way to combat complacency is by practicing the art of relaxed awareness.
Relaxed awareness is similar to the art of meditation….it is achieved by being fully immersed and aware of your surroundings. A good example of relaxed awareness is when you are practicing defensive driving. After you practice defensive driving, you remember the entire drive because your mind was fully engaged and active the entire trip. Unfortunately relaxed awareness isn’t something you can pack in a bag, but you can practice it constantly to help ensure your survival.
Hunger can nag at you, slow you down, and eventually kill you. Combat hunger by learning primitive hunting and fishing skills. Make sure that you have snare wire, survival knives, paracord, a fishing kit and anything else you can think of that will help you find and secure game and fish. Also, learn what wild plant in the area are edible.
You will die in only a few days without water. Depending on your activity level and the environment, you will need at least a gallon of water a day. Knowing how to locate, store and decontaminate water is essential. Always carry a way to store and decontaminate water.
98.6 degrees Fahrenheit
If you can’t keep the core temperature of your body at 98.6 degrees, you are in a world of hurt. Cody Lundin of “Dual Survival” fame covers this reality very well in his book “98.6 Degrees: The Art of Keeping Your Ass Alive“.
You need to be able to protect your body from both heat and the cold. Always have a way to make a quick emergency shelter in your survival kit. Bivy bags are lightweight and take up very little room. You also need several ways to start a fire in your kit. Also, always have clothing in your survival kit that is rugged and made for the weather of the season that you are in.
Avoid pain at all costs. It can cripple or at the very least slow you down to the point that you are in imminent danger of losing your life. If possible, carry medications to deal with it. Injuries are more likely when one panics or is fatigued.
Getting overly tired or fatigued makes the chances of injury greater and increases the dangers of exposure. One important thing to understand is that fatigue affects your mind just as much as it does your body.
Arctic explorers discovered that if you sleep when you need to rather than pushing on, you will wake up when you become cold. If you push on till you collapse from exhaustion you’ll freeze to death instead of waking up.
Boredom is like a cancer that slowly eats away at morale. It is always a good idea to keep a way to entertain you in your survival kit. Something as simple as a deck of cards can do wonders for fighting boredom. To this one you can add loneliness…if you are alone. Loneliness can be devastating.
As you can see, these enemies of survival can all make surviving an emergency much more difficult…if not impossible. By understanding them you will have a much better chance of getting out of your next survival situation/emergency alive.
The Chap Stick
When you’re selecting what to put into your survival kit or bug out
bag, it’s a good idea to pack items that have multiple uses.
This is one of the best way to be prepared for all types of situations
without taking up more space than necessary.
There are dozens of multi-use items, but I want to look at the humble
Chap Stick
Moisten chapped
hands and scrapes.
This helps them heal faster and keeps them protected from the
Stop small cuts
from bleeding.
Obviously this won’t work for deep cuts, but it’s great for little
cuts for example if you cut yourself shaving. It will also keep dirt and other
things out thereby reducing the chance of infection.
Protect your
skin from the cold.
In extremely cold weather, rub it on exposed skin
to help prevent frostbite.
Protect your
skin from the sun.
Chap Stick can also be used as sunscreen. It’s not as effective as
regular sunscreen, but it will do as long as you’re not in the sun all day.
Just don’t get any in your eyes!
If there’s a spot on your skin that is getting rubbed raw, put some
Chap Stick on it to prevent a blister from forming.
Reduce glare. If you’re in a
bright desert or snowy area, dip Chap Stick in black ashes and rub it under
your eyes. This will keep you from going snow blind.
Use it on
Rub it on cotton balls, lint, cloth, gauze, or even dried bark to make
kindling that burns easily and for a long time.
Make a candle. Cut a Q-tip in
half, rub the cotton end on the chap stick, then turn it over and stick the
other end into the chap stick and you’ll have a small candle. It won’t burn all
evening, but it is a good temporary candle that will make it a lot easier to
get a fire started.
Lubricate your
bow drill.
The bearing block needs to be lubricated so the spindle will spin more
easily. If nothing else is available, Chap Stick will do.
I’m talking about the ones on metal twist caps or outdoor light bulbs.
This will prevent them from rusting.
Lubricate zips
that are stuck.
This will make them easier to move and make them a little more water
Lubricate tools,
screws, and nails.
Any tool with moving parts and friction can benefit from the Chap
Stick. Also, if you put it on screws and nails it will be easier to drill /
hammer them into place.
Keep knives from
Now this one I really like rub it directly onto the blade. Very
helpful if you’re on the move and it’s raining.
Patch holes. If you have any
tiny holes in your poncho or tent, a little chap stick will plug it up.
Protect leather. This is a must
for those who have leather sheaths just rub it all over anything leather such
as a sheath or shoes. This will protect the leather and make it somewhat water
Clean glasses. Rub a dab of Chap
Stick all over the lens then polish with a thin cloth. This will clean the lens
and keep them from fogging up.
Take off a ring. If your hands
swell up, rub Chap Stick on your fingers and the ring will slide right off.
Hide cash. Take off the caps
on both ends, clean it out really well, then roll up some cash and stick it in
there. Great way to hide money.
Make a tiny
survival kit.
Several little things can fit into an empty chap stick tube such as
pills, a tiny compass, a Q-tip (for kindling), strike-anywhere matches, steel
wire, the tip of a pen for writing, a hook and fishing line, etc.
So you are stuck in snow


OK so you have a snow shovel in your vehicle during winter, you do have
one don’t you? Having one can literally mean the difference between life and
death… You should also have a vehicle emergency pack with essential survival
items in case you have to spend the night in your car, or walk miles home
in freezing weather.
Even if you have a snow shovel, if the road is frozen hard, even after
digging out around the wheels, it can still be difficult to gain traction and
get un-stuck.
In this situation there is a way you can get traction and get moving
again. It can also work even if you didn’t have a snow shovel, so couldn’t dig
out first, but only if the snow isn’t too deep.
This tip will only really work on hard surfaces such as roads,
driveways and car parks, but here’s what to do –
If there is snow and you have a snow shovel, dig out as much snow
around the wheels as possible. No snow shovel, then do this!
Take out the floor mats in your car, turn them upside down and place
them in front and underneath the wheels which are spinning, this will obviously
depend on whether your car is front or rear wheel drive.
Jump back in the car and try to drive forward slowly and steadily.
If you escape, be sure to run back and pick up your floor mats. If your
car simply moved over the floor mats and immediately got stuck again, you can
keep repeating the process and inch forward.


What to do in a Terrorist Attack
In the late 60’s/early 70/s I lived in Northern Ireland and during this time we saw the height of the troubles with daily bombings and shootings on our streets.
Even to the point where the terrorist would place large bombs in the actual doorways of the pubs which were full of people and warn them not to more for so many minutes.
Needless to say that when the bombers left so did the people inside as the timers were not very good in those early days of terrorism.
We took many precautions back then that may seem very strange to you now.
The first thing that happened was a back street industry began in the ability to re-tune our radios to receive not the normal programmes but also the police, Army, and believe it or not Taxis as if they were sending taxis into an area then it was usually safe for us to go there too.
Bomb threats happened as I said daily and it got to the point where it became annoying having programmes interrupted continually by bomb warnings that were in areas that you did not actually live in.
Today 40 years later nothing has really changed at all, as today we still face the terrorist threat.
Terrorism is the unlawful use of force or violence by a person or group. The goal is to intimidate or coerce societies or governments in an effort to promote political, ideological beliefs or religious beliefs.
These attacks can take many forms, and could happen at any time in any place. Terrorists typically exploit vulnerabilities, and may use technology, hazardous materials, biological agents or other methods to create devastating disruptions to the community.
Terrorism thrives on fear. By planning how to respond to a terrorist attack, you can greatly improve your chances of survival. You can also lessen the impact of the attack by reducing the fear in the aftermath.
Take precautions when traveling.
Do not accept packages from strangers and do not leave luggage unattended. You should promptly report unusual behaviour, suspicious or unattended packages, and strange devices to the police or security personnel.
Learn where emergency exits are located in buildings you frequent. Plan how to get out in the event of an emergency. Also, be prepared to do without services you normally depend on— electricity, telephone, natural gas, petrol pumps, cash registers, Holes in the wall/ATMS, and Internet access.
Bomb Threat
If you receive a telephoned bomb threat, you should get as much information as possible. Try asking the following questions:
When is the bomb going to explode?
Where is it right now?
What does it look like?
What kind of bomb is it?
What will cause it to explode?
Did you place the bomb?
Try to keep the caller on the line and record everything that is said. Notify the police immediately. If the threat seems credible, evacuate the building immediately.
If a terrorist attack occurs, it is important that you remain calm and follow instructions from local officials and emergency service personnel.
You should be aware of your surroundings and watch for additional attacks.
Listen to local TV and radio for directions and travel information and instructions from local officials. If you are in a position where the attack occurs near you, check for injuries and provide first‐aid. This is a situation when a GHB will be of use as well as a plan on how you will get home.
In your home
If the disaster occurs near your home while you are there, check for damage using a torch/flashlight. Do not light matches or candles or turn on electrical switches.
Check for fires, fire hazards and other household hazards. Sniff for gas leaks, starting at the water heater.
If you smell gas or suspect a leak, turn off the main gas valve, open windows, and get everyone outside quickly.
Turn off any other damaged electrical appliances or equipment.
Confine or secure your pets.
Call your family contact—do not use the telephone again unless it is a life‐threatening emergency. In some cases, mobile phones will not work. Consider other ways of communicating. Remember in the recent Paris attacks the authorities shut the mobile networks down to prevent the terrorist talking to each other.
Check on your neighbours, especially those who are elderly or disabled.
If you see or hear an explosion
Call 999 or 112
Get under a sturdy table or desk if things are falling around you. When they stop falling, leave quickly, watching for obviously weakened floors and stairways.
As you exit from the building, be especially watchful of falling debris.
Leave the building as quickly as possible. Crawl low to the floor if there is smoke. Do not stop to retrieve personal possessions or make phone calls.
Do not use the lifts.
Check for fire and other hazards.
Once you are out, do not stand in front of windows, glass doors or other potentially hazardous areas.
If you are trapped in debris: Use a torch/flashlight, if possible, to signal your location to rescuers.
Tap on a pipe or wall so rescuers can hear where you are.
If possible, use a whistle to signal rescuers.
Shout only as a last resort. Shouting can cause you to inhale dangerous amounts of dust.
Avoid unnecessary movement so you don’t kick up dust.
Cover your nose and mouth with anything you have on hand. (Dense‐weave cotton material can act as a good filter. Try to breathe through the material.)
Be wary of suspicious packages and letters. They can contain explosives, chemical or biological agents.
Be particularly cautious at your place of work. Some typical characteristics of suspicious packages may include:
Unexpected or unfamiliar senders.
No return address or a return address that can’t be verified as legitimate.
Marked with restrictive endorsements such as “Personal,” “Confidential,” or “Do not X‐ray.”
Have protruding wires or aluminium foil, strange odours or stains.
Show a city or location in the postmark that doesn’t match the return address.
Are of unusual weight given their size or are lopsided or oddly shaped.
Are marked with threatening language.
Have inappropriate or unusual labelling.
Have excessive postage or packaging material, such as masking tape and string.
Have misspellings of common words.
Are addressed to someone no longer with your organization or are otherwise outdated.
Have incorrect titles or titles without a name.
Are not addressed to a specific person.
Have hand‐written or poorly typed addresses.
After a Terrorist Attack
You can expect heavy police and security involvement at the local, county and even national levels.
These agencies will investigate the incident and the location will be treated as a crime scene.
Your workplace or school may be closed, and there may be restrictions on domestic and international travel.
You and your family may have to evacuate the area, as instructed by the police or other safety personal. You should also expect extensive media coverage and increased police activity, even if the attack did not occur in your immediate area.
What to do in a terror attack
If you have not already done so, then now is a good time to make yourself aware of a few tips on what to do if you’re unfortunate enough to be caught up in a terror attack.
Surviving a terror attack
If you are involved or close to a terror incident you must exercise heightened security awareness and follow the directives of local authorities.
Here are a few safety first tips:
Stay inside your home, work place or any other accommodation you are in at the time.
Do not go out onto the streets.
Be alert to local news developments.
Stick to any imposed curfews or security restrictions.
Be aware of conspicuous or unusual behaviour. Unusual behaviour and strange devices should be reported to the police or security personnel promptly.
If you are in a building located close to the site of a terrorist attack, stay away from the windows
If in the vicinity of an attack, do not stay to watch what is happening, as you will only get in the way of the emergency services. There is also a risk that additional attacks may occur.
Make a mental note of safe havens, such as police stations and hospitals.
If there’s a bomb blast
Leave the area as soon as possible
Stay clear of glass shop fronts.
If you are injured attend to yourself before others.
Obey all instructions and orders that are given by local police.
Make your way to a pre-planned secure area.
If you return to your home or hotel stay away from the windows.
Listen to television and radio reports.
Contact family or friends and let them know your situation.
Write down what you saw before and after the blast it may help the authorities in their investigation.
If you are injured
If you are injured or become ill please seek medical aid.
Be aware that any functioning hospitals and clinics may be busy caring for large numbers of people who have been injured in the incident.
Preparing for terrorism on holiday abroad
Before visiting a country where there is a risk of terrorism you should first obtain as much information on that country as possible.
When you arrive, stay away from those areas that may have been the target of terrorism in the past.
Identify the main tourist areas and stay away from those which appear less secure.
Make yourself aware of your surroundings. Be aware of the conduct of people near to you.
Stay away from large gatherings or demonstrations.
Know the telephone numbers of local police, hospitals and your Embassy.
f you are with friends identify a rendezvous point to meet should there be an incident.
Prepare a plan to evacuate should there be an incident.
Know the telephone numbers of local transport and hire car companies.
What is happening to me and who do I call?
It is important to remember that the situation you are in can be extremely stressful.
Call home and your country’s Consulate or Embassy to let them know where you are, if you are alright and if you need any assistance.
Surviving a Flood

Floods are one of
the most common hazards in the world, however not all floods are alike. Some
floods develop slowly, while others such a flash floods, can develop in just a
few minutes and without visible signs of rain. Additionally, floods can be
local, impacting an estate or community, or very large, affecting entire river
basins and even whole counties.


Flash floods can
occur within a few minutes or hours of excessive rainfall, a dam or river bank
breach. Flash floods often have a dangerous wall of roaring water carrying
rocks, mud and other debris.

Overland flooding,
the most common type of flooding event typically occurs when waterways such as
rivers or streams overflow their banks as a result of rainwater causing
flooding in surrounding areas. It can also occur when rainfall or snowmelt
exceeds the capacity of underground pipes, or the capacity of streets and
drains designed to carry flood water away from urban areas.

Be aware of flood
hazards no matter where you live or work, but especially if you are in
low-lying areas, near water, behind a flood barrier or downstream from a dam.
Even very small streams, gullies, culverts, dry streambeds or low-lying ground
that appear harmless in dry weather can flood.

Before a Flood

What would you do if
your property were flooded? Are you prepared?

Even if you feel you
live in an area with a low risk of flooding, remember that anywhere it rains,
it can flood.  Just because you haven’t experienced a flood in the past,
doesn’t mean you won’t in the future. 


Flood risk isn’t
just based on history; it’s also based on a number of factors including
rainfall , topography, flood-control measures, river-flow and tidal-surge data,
and changes due to new construction and development.
maps have been created to show the flood risk for your community, which
helps determine the type of flood insurance coverage you will
need since standard homeowners insurance doesn’t cover flooding.  The
lower the degree of risk, the lower the flood insurance premium.
To prepare for a flood, you should:
Build an emergency
kit and make a family communications plan.
Avoid building in a
floodplain unless you elevate and reinforce your home.
You could elevate
the fire, water heater and electric panel in your home if you live in an area
that has a high flood risk.
Consider installing
“check valves” to prevent flood water from backing up into the drains of your
If feasible,
construct barriers to stop floodwater from entering the building and seal walls
in basements with waterproofing compounds.
During a Flood
If a flood is likely
in your area, you should:
Listen to the radio
or television for information.
Be aware that flash
flooding can occur. If there is any possibility of a flash flood, move
immediately to higher ground. Do not wait for instructions to move.
Be aware of stream,
drainage channels, valleys and other areas known to flood suddenly. Flash
floods can occur in these areas with or without typical warnings such as rain
clouds or heavy rain.
Secure your home. If
you have time, bring in outdoor furniture. Move essential items to an upper
Turn off
utilities at the main switches or valves if instructed to do so.
Disconnect electrical appliances. Do not touch electrical equipment if you are
wet or standing in water.
If you have to leave your home, remember these evacuation
Do not walk through
moving water. Six inches of moving water can make you fall. If you have to walk
in water, walk where the water is not moving. Use a stick to check the firmness
of the ground in front of you.
Do not drive into
flooded areas. If floodwaters rise around your car, abandon the car and move to
higher ground if you can do so safely. You and the vehicle can be swept away
Do not camp or park
your vehicle along streams, rivers or creeks, particularly during threatening
After the Flood
Your home has been
flooded. Although floodwaters may be down in some areas, many dangers still
exist. Here are some things to remember in the days ahead:
Use local alerts and
warning systems to get information and expert informed advice as soon as
Avoid moving water.
Stay away from
damaged areas unless your assistance has been specifically requested by police,
fire, or relief organization.
Emergency workers
will be assisting people in flooded areas. You can help them by staying off the
roads and out of the way.
Play it safe.
Additional flooding or flash floods can occur. Listen for local warnings and
information. If your car stalls in rapidly rising waters, get out immediately
and climb to higher ground.
Return home only
when authorities indicate it is safe.
Roads may still be
closed because they have been damaged or are covered by water. Barricades have
been placed for your protection. If you come upon a barricade or a flooded road
go another way.
If you must walk or drive in areas that have been
Stay on firm ground.
Moving water only 6 inches deep can sweep you off your feet. Standing water may
be electrically charged from underground or downed power lines.
Flooding may have
caused familiar places to change. Floodwaters often erode roads and walkways.
Flood debris may hide animals and broken bottles, and it’s also slippery. Avoid
walking or driving through it.
Be aware of areas
where floodwaters have receded. Roads may have weakened and could collapse
under the weight of a car.
Stay out of any
building if it is surrounded by floodwaters.
Use extreme caution
when entering buildings; there may be hidden damage, particularly in
A flood can cause
physical hazards and emotional stress. You need to look after yourself and your
family as you focus on clean up and repair.
Avoid floodwaters;
water may be contaminated by oil, gasoline or raw sewage.
Service damaged
septic tanks, cesspools, pits and leaching systems as soon as possible. Damaged
sewer systems are serious health hazards.
Listen for news
reports to learn whether the community’s water supply is safe to drink
Clean and disinfect
everything that got wet. Mud left from floodwaters can contain sewage and
Rest often and eat well.
Keep a manageable
schedule. Make a list and do jobs one at a time.
Discuss your
concerns with others and seek help. Contact Red Cross for information on
emotional support available in your area.
Turn off the electricity
at the main breaker or fuse box, even if the power is off in your community.
That way, you can decide when your home is dry enough to turn it back on.


Ground to Air

When you’re in
distress in the outdoors and you need to call for help, you can use a number of
different rescue signal techniques. But if you believe that an airplane,
helicopter, or other airborne rescue party may be searching for you, then you
can use the five-symbol ground-to-air emergency code to signal a specific
message in advance of the aircraft’s landing.

Most importantly,
the ground-to-air emergency code can help let rescuers know whether or not
anyone in your party is injured, and it can guide them more effectively towards
your location. The five ground-to-air emergency code symbols and their meanings
are as follows:

Require Assistance: V

A V-shaped signal
communicates that you need assistance, in general, but it doesn’t imply that
you or someone in your party is injured.

Require Medical Assistance: X

Use the letter X to
communicate that you or someone in your party needs medical attention. Whereas
the V symbol communicates a call for help, the X symbol communicates a more
urgent request for assistance.

No or Negative: N

The N symbol can be
used to communicate your negative response to a question that the aircraft or
rescue organization has asked.


Yes or Affirmative: Y
The Y symbol can be
used to communicate your affirmative response to a question that the aircraft
or rescue organization has asked.
Proceed in this Direction: Arrow, pointing towards the
Place an
arrow-shaped symbol with the head, or point, of the arrow indicating the
direction of your location. This symbol is a good one to use when rescuers may
need additional information about how to reach your location after they have
identified another ground-to-air signal, such as a group of X symbols in an
open area indicating a need for medical assistance. Place the arrow in a
position that will guide rescuers from the open area towards your location.
Tips for Using the Air-to-Ground Emergency Code:
Signal using the
air-to-ground emergency code as you would signal with other methods, such as a
smoke rescue fire.
Remember these key
ideas when arranging signals and communicating with rescue crews:
As with other visual
signals, signalling in threes communicates and confirms distress.
Choose a large, open
area as close as possible to your location for the signal location.
Choose to place
signals on the highest, flattest terrain you can find near your location.
Choose a signal that
will contrast with the underlying terrain. Choose dark-coloured branches, for
example, on top of white snow.
Go big! Use several
rows of rocks or debris to build each part of a signal letter so that it is
thick enough and big enough to be seen clearly from above.
Be prepared to use a
back-up signal, such as a signal mirror, to confirm your location as soon as
you see aircraft in the area.


Out and About

I would never
recommend going into the wilderness alone for many reasons, centred mainly I
would have to say around safety.

But going into the
wilderness challenges us as individuals and tests our knowledge and survival
skills and you know that is why we do it.

Going out alone in
the wilderness can be quite rewarding, as long as everything goes smoothly.
Perhaps you’re after some peace and quiet, or perhaps you’re looking for a way
to challenge yourself mentally and physically.

People go out
backpacking, hiking, and camping alone for various reasons, but it’s important
to be aware of the risks and be prepared in order to return home safely.

Here are a few
things that you can do to increase your chances of surviving a solo adventure
and enjoy yourself in the process:

Plan in Advance

Don’t go out solo on
a whim. Instead, take the extra time you need to make careful plans. Advance
planning for a solo venture should include all of the following:

Monitor weather forecasts:
Choose to go solo in the best weather possible. Take extra clothing to protect
yourself from the elements including rain, wind, and snow. Consider lining your
backpack with a plastic rubbish bag to keep gear dry, or cover your backpack
with a rain cover.

Check with the locals:
Call Tourist Information or the National Trust to make sure that conditions are
safe. Ask about obstacles such as water or snow, and make sure you’re aware of
emergency shelters that may be along your proposed route.


Check to see if
mobile phones will work in the area you are heading for, and make a list of
emergency contacts that you will carry with you.
Make a gear checklist:
Include emergency survival gear and a wilderness first-aid kit on your list.
Plan to purchase necessary items in advance to avoid a last-minute rush.
Gather route information:
Do as much as you can to study your route by reading about it in guidebooks,
studying maps, and consulting others who have been in the area.
Find out about
potential terrain and wildlife hazards. Use technology such as Google Earth,
online maps, and photographs to help you anticipate terrain.
If you’re able to go
hike a section of a trail that you’re worried about encountering on a multi-day
trip, you could always hike it as a day hike so that you are mentally and
physically prepared.
Practice in Advance
If you haven’t gone
out on a solo venture, practice in advance, and practice in increasing levels
of difficulty. Begin with a solo day hike, and then advance to an overnight
trip. Once you’ve gained sufficient skill and experience, next venture out for
a multi-day trip.
Plan on sharing your
first overnight trips with others who are more experienced than you so that you
can practice your skills and learn from their advice before next going out
Get fit! Don’t go
out alone if you’re worried about your physical fitness. Train in advance of a
solo adventure by increasing endurance and weight carried on the trail.
Practice hiking with a backpack that will match the weight of the one you plan
to carry on your solo journey so that you’re not surprised by its weight when
the time comes for you to go out alone.
Share Detailed Plans
Let friends, family,
and/or rangers know the details of your proposed journey, and then don’t
deviate from those plans. Choose a specific point of contact, and file a trip
plan with that person; include detailed route information, time of departure,
and estimated time of return.
Also include
information about what response you’d like if you don’t return on time. Do you
want people to come out searching for you immediately? Leave contact numbers
for emergency and search agencies so that your point of contact knows how to
Choose Gear Wisely
When going out solo,
you will have to carry all of your camp weight instead of sharing it with a
partner or a group. Carry the lightest load possible by planning calorie-dense
meals, carrying light cooking gear, and taking the lightest shelter that’s
sufficient for the conditions.
Carry communications
equipment in a waterproof bag. Turn off equipment when it’s not in use, and
take extra batteries or a solar charger to make sure you have power when you
need it.
Make sure that you
have a sufficient wilderness first-aid kit and other emergency supplies such as
a signal mirror, a fire starter, a knife, and a water purification system. Use
your checklist for packing essentials, such as a map, compass, whistle and
proper clothing.
Be Conservative
When confronted with
a threatening situation, adopt a survival mentality, but be conservative with
gear, food, and route selection. If you break or lose something essential, you
could put yourself in greater danger when you’re alone than with others who can
share their gear.
Approach water
crossings with caution since you won’t be able to rely on other hiking partners
to help you, and look for ways to avoid dangerous or exposed terrain. When
you’re out alone, your survival ultimately depends on your health, your gear,
and your ability to improvise.


How to stay
warm at home when cash is low
How to stay warm at
home if without turning the heating on when low on cash? Here are some
Fool the eye: Sometimes warmth is a matter of perception.
Warm colours and textures
make you feel warmer so change out your decor. Try a throw so you can snuggle
under it.
Cut a rug: Cover up your bare floors with a rug.
Bake something:
Stews, roasts, casseroles and soups are made for the cold weather because they
cook at low temperatures for a long period of time and, of course, they warm
you up going down.
Drink something:
Wrap your hands around a warm mug of tea, cocoa or coffee.
Let the sun in: Open
curtains and blinds during the day.
Change your bedding:
Switch to flannel sheets, a down comforter, use extra blankets.
Clean the house: Not
only will your house be cleaner but activity will get your blood pumping.
Cover your head: It
sounds silly but wearing a hat (and socks) to bed at night, even if the rest of
you is clad in skimpy clothing, will keep you warm.
It’s muggy in here: Use a humidifier. Humid air feels
No humidifier? Open
the bathroom door while you’re showering.
Reverse the fan: We
know that, since heat rises, running your ceiling fan in reverse will push the
warm air back down to the ground.
Do your laundry:
Nothing warms you up like clothing straight from the dryer.
It’s drafty in here:
Block drafts with weather stripping, a rolled up towel or a draft stopper.
It takes two: Snuggle up with your significant other.
Something old
fashioned: Try a hot water bottle or, before you get into bed, running a hot
pan over your sheets. Bags of rice or dried beans, warmed in the microwave, are
another option.
How to stay warm with no heating for whatever reason.
Wear layers of
clothing in real times if it is very cold then dress for the outdoors, wear a
hat and gloves.
If you have a real
fire build it up and gather the family in that room.
Block all drafts
with rolled towels, rolled newspapers or fix weather strips.
You can create a
double glazing effect by nailing up Perspex over existing windows remembering
to leave an air gap between them, remember not to bang the nails home as that
may by your only escape route in the event of a fire.
How to prevent Hypothermia
Which dulls the
brain–the most important survival tool you have to help you survival:
Seek and create
shelter from cold, wind, snow, and rain. If possible, retreat to timbered areas
for shelter construction and fire.
Nibble high energy
goods–sweets, nuts, and energy bars. Sip water kept warm with body heat. Use
solid fuel hand warmer, igniting both ends of fuel stick, which is good for
four hours of heat. Do isometric exercises to stir up body’s circulation
Prevent heat loss.
Remember the body
loses heat by respiration, evaporation, conduction, radiation, and convection.
To prevent loss by
respiration, cover the mouth and nose with loosely woven or knitted wool.
To reduce
evaporation through excessive perspiration, wear clothes that breathe and are
in layers.
To avoid loss by
conduction, put a layer of over between the body and a cold, wet surface. This
insulation is particularly important if you’re already wet.
To prevent loss by
radiation, keep the head, hands, and feet covered.
To prevent loss by
convection, protect the body from the wind.
In stage one of hypothermia, the victim begins shivering, has poor coordination, slurs speech, and
shows poor judgment.
By stage two,
when the body temperature is below 95 degrees, muscular rigidity replaces
shivering, and the victim becomes more irrational and needs warmth immediately
from external sources and protection from further heat loss.
Know that the victim is the LAST to realize s/he’s in
Surviving post
So you will not have
to scavenge post SHTF because you already have everything you need, you have
prepped, you are OK, Well maybe, maybe not.
Even if you’ve been
prepping for years, it’s still possible you forgot a few things. But even if
you didn’t, you could still end up in a situation where you need something you
never thought you’d need.
What if one of your
group becomes pregnant or a parent with a small child joins your group? You may
have to go looking for baby food, nappies etc.
What if your
prescription medications are lost or destroyed? You may have to go looking for
replacement meds. What if vital equipment is damaged? What if you need parts
for your shelter or vehicle? These are just a few possibilities off the top of
my head. There are dozens more situations you won’t think of until you’re in
The point is, you
may have no other choice but to scavenge for supplies after the SHTF. If
someone’s life is on the line, you’ll have no choice.
Send a Scout
If you know the area
you want to search, it’s a good idea to send a scout with binoculars, a radio,
and a gun. Scouts should watch the area for a few hours to make sure no one is
living there and that there is no one lying in wait.
You might think I am
going over the top here but some people become very dangerous when there are no
police to keep them in check. The last thing you want is to get robbed or
possibly killed while scavenging for supplies.
The radio is so your
scout can stay in touch. If the area is compromised or not worth the trouble,
the group’s leader can instruct the scout to return or to check another area.
This is another good reason why you should have a CB radio as part of your
If you lose contact
with your scout, you’ll know something is wrong and can send reinforcements.
But the reinforcements need to be careful not to wander into a trap. The
purpose of the scout’s gun should be obvious.
When surveying the
area, the scout needs to note any obstacles that might make the area more
trouble than it’s worth.
Examples include
barbed wire fences, high walls, ditches, streams, and so forth. All these
things might make it too difficult or dangerous to lug back supplies.
Also check for
vehicle access as this would speed the operation up.
The scout should
also note whether any buildings in question have been damaged by things such as
bombs and or looters etc. You don’t want the stairs you’re climbing to collapse
or a ceiling to fall on your head while you’re digging through rubble.
You and your group
will have to weigh the costs versus the benefits and the risks versus the
rewards before searching an area.
Make a Plan
Once you’ve decided
where to go and what to look for, you’ll have to decide who to send. Never send
someone alone. He or she could twist an ankle or something and need help
returning to camp. Also, there could be heavy obstacles or supplies that
require at least two people to move. And remember, one person is far more
likely to be robbed or killed than a group of people.
Of you should send
several people, but that depends on how many you can spare. You don’t want to
leave children alone at your camp.
Everyone who goes
should bring a sturdy backpack along with several empty bags (cloth, mesh, or
even rubbish bags for light stuff), work gloves, a multitool, a good knife, a
flashlight, a gun, a face mask, and goggles.
Those last two are
in case the location’s air is full of dust, smoke, or toxic chemicals. At least
one person in the group should also have a crowbar. And if you need fuel, don’t
forget to bring a siphon and a fuel container
If you have several
areas to search, you’ll have to decide the order in which to search them.
It’s better to start
farther out and work your way back toward camp so you don’t waste energy carrying
supplies farther than necessary. But if you know the heaviest items are going
to be in a particular place, you might want to go there last.
If scavenging your
area is going to take several days or weeks, you should get a map and mark the
locations you search so you don’t accidentally visit the same place twice.
Where to Look
You should look
everywhere! Here are some possible suggestion of places to search and what you
may find within them.
Car repair garages– You have a better chance of finding the part you need here than in a
department store. It’s true now, and it will be true after the SHTF, too.
Cars – You’ll want to check the glove box, under the seats, and in the
boot for snacks, tools, and other useful items.
Parts of the car
itself might prove useful, too. The mirrors could be used for signalling, the
wiring for cordage, the upholstery for bedding and insulation, the battery for
power (if someone in your group is mechanically inclined), and of course the
engine parts if you need them for your own vehicle.

Food warehouses – Most people will aim for the shops first, so it will be a little
longer before the warehouses are picked clean. Even then, there may be a few
things that were overlooked. Also check the lorry trailers. You may find
non-perishable foods and other supplies.

Industrial rubbish bins – It won’t be fun, but you might find some hidden treasures in them.

Fire stations
– You may find food, supplies, and clothing. Plus, the fire engine has a tank
with hundreds of gallons of water. It will need to be filtered, though.

Petrol Stations – These will probably be picked clean, but you never know.

Shops – These
will probably be picked clean, too, but you may find food in less obvious
places such as under shelves and behind displays. Also check the bathrooms, the
offices, the stock room, and the loading bay.

Obviously these should have lots of clothes and medical supplies.

Check everywhere–rooms, garage, basement, attic, back garden, sheds, the garden
if there is one, etc.
The water heater has
up to 70 gallons of drinking water. Better yet, look for houses with swimming
pools. Also keep an eye out for metal mailboxes which can be converted into

Manufacturing Facilities – They may have fuel, batteries, tools, and first aid supplies.

Check abandoned boats. They usually have supplies like emergency rations,
communication equipment, fishing equipment, ropes, fuel and possibly guns.

Office Buildings – Check break rooms for vending machines and check desks for snacks and
small tools. There should be fire extinguishers in most rooms and cleaning
supplies in the care takers room.

Pawn Shops If
you’re lucky you’ll find weapons, ammo, and other miscellaneous gear.

Pet Stores If
your pets are still okay, a pet store might make it possible for you to keep
feeding them without giving up any of your own food. You could also eat it
yourself, but I wouldn’t recommend that unless you’re really desperate.

These will probably be empty, but check anyway. There may be a few tins or bags
of food that were overlooked. Anything that was in the freezer will have gone
bad, though. But there may still be pots, pans etc.

Retail Stores
– Consider grabbing some non-electric entertainment such as books, cards, board
games, sports equipment, clothing etc.

There’s a lot to be found in schools–tools, fire extinguishers, first aid kits,
cleaning supplies, and possibly food in the cafeteria.

Self-storage Facilities – If you have time to pry open all of them, it might be worth it. You
probably won’t find any food or perishable items, but there’s a chance you’ll
find some clothes or useful gear and equipment.
Hopefully you’ll
never have to go digging through any of these places, but you should prepare
for the possibility. Good luck.

What is EMF and
Why You Need to Know about EMF Health

What is EMF?

EMF is quickly
becoming a household word because it IS affecting our health and it’s

There is plenty of
information ‘out there’ stating EMF’s aren’t harmful, but I am not sure. Here
is the truth about EMF dangers stated in very simple terms and the best EMF

What is EMF?

EMF stands for
electromagnetic field. Everything God created has its own electromagnetic
field. Additionally, everything man makes has an electromagnetic field (i.e.,
electronic technology). It is a measurable type of energy, and for the human
body the EMF frequencies truly are the life of our cells.

radiation is the energy projected from the EMF’s. Just as there are good fats
and bad fats for our body and good sugars and bad sugars for our body, so there
are good/safe EMF’s and bad/harmful EMF’s for our body.

What are the
short-term symptoms from wireless Smart Meters?

Symptoms from the
radiation emitted by wireless Smart Meters are: headaches, dizziness,
short-term memory loss, a fuzzy head, irritability, itchiness, aches, sleep
disturbance, digestive problems, heart-rate changes, and many more.

Both children and
adults can suffer.

How many people are
likely to be ill from wireless Smart Meters?

People’s exposure to
wireless Smart Meter radiation varies considerably between properties.

Therefore the number
of people affected by short-term symptoms will also vary according to
individual conditions.

Surveys suggest that
about 30% of the population are slightly allergic to radio exposure, usually
without knowing it, 3% moderately, and under 1% severely. Is the number people
suffering from Electro-sensitivity rising or falling?


Doctors around the
world report a steady increase in the number of people being sensitised.
Some scientists
estimate that up to half the population could be sensitised to some extent by
2017 to 2065,
depending on the growth in electro-pollution, including wireless Smart Meters.
So what do the WHO
and scientific studies say about Electro-sensitivity?
In 2000 the Nordic
Council of Ministers categorised “El-allergy” as IDI-10-R68. In 2005 the
WHO stated that the
symptoms are “certainly real” and it can be a “disabling condition”.
Increasing numbers
of studies show a link between EM exposure and autonomic responses.
What are the
long-term health problems from wireless Smart Meters?
Long-term or
high-level exposure to similar radiation is linked with cancers and
neurological diseases.
UK wireless Smart
Meter trials began in 2009 so there are no long-term studies.
What do the WHO and
scientific studies say about wireless Smart Meters?
In 2011 the World
Health Organisation’s IARC classified radiation such as from wireless Smart
Meters as a 2B possible carcinogen.
Mobile phone
radiation and Wi-Fi change brain functions and can harm male fertility. This
radiation is linked with neurological diseases and cancers.
How do wireless
Smart Meters cause ill health?
radiation can affect the autonomic nervous system, protein expression and the
thyroid. Mechanisms include calcium efflux at ion cyclotron resonance on cell
membranes, reduced melatonin, mast cell degranulation, free radicals, DNA effects,
biogenic magnetite, cytochromes and metal implants. Some genetic variants are
more sensitive to EM radiation.
Smart meters.  So-called smart electrical meters are a newer
threat, and a bad one.  These are new
electrical meters that are being installed on homes and businesses.
Instead of requiring
a person to read the meter, the meter contains a radio transmitter that sends
the data directly from the home to a central location.  This requires a fairly powerful radio
transmitter that is located right at your home and work place.
Even more sinister
is the fact that these devices may transmit up to 10 frequencies, day and
night, which seem to be particularly harmful for some people.
Some would say they
are weaponized, meaning they are very harmful for some people to be around or
even close to.
However, even if you
refuse it for your home, your neighbours may have one that is broadcasting
right into your home.  Also, your place
of work may have one, as well.  Laws must
be changed to stop the implementation of these devices, which are far too
powerful to be placed close to human populations.
How similar are
health effects from radio frequency and from ionising radiation?
“Electrosmog ELF
changes are similar to ionizing radiation from Chernobyl or Fukushima’s
ionizing radioisotope particles, with health deterioration and behavioural
problems, premature illness and death.”
The Four Forms of
Electromagnetic Radiation
The four forms of
electromagnetic radiation include:
Electric – Anything
having an electric field including power lines that transport it.
Magnetic – Anything
having a magnetic field which could come from an electric source or from a
motor or engine.
Fi/Microwave – Anything that communicates with a wireless signal using radio
frequency, microwave, wi fi, etc.
Ionizing – Includes
gamma rays, UV rays and X-rays.
All forms of
electromagnetic radiation that is different from the human bodies is bad for
body exposure and would include:
Ionizing EMF
Emissions Facts – Even low dose exposure causes damage to living tissue
including cancer, tumours and genetic (DNA) damage. Radon (vapor from uranium
decay that comes up out of the ground) in homes is the second leading cause of
lung cancer after smoking and second hand smoke.
Like all radiation
you can help to protect yourself from its effects. The only two known solutions
are Distance and Shielding.
There are many, many
supplements, substances, alternative medicines if you wish that have a proven
track record in dealing with the effects on the human body of EMF.
I however am not
qualified to comment on them or the doses to take. You will find the internet
full of site that know more about them than me.
I will be covering
the type of detection meters that you can buy and how to use them in later


Survivalist Thoughts
Those of us who’ve figured things out to various and lessor
degrees, realize the need to prepare for a time in the not too distant future
when the society we’ve become accustom to will no longer be functional.
Let’s pause a moment and savour the meaning of what I just
said. Some people who have not really paused to consider the true ramifications
of a societal collapse, look forward to these times with an almost naive glee.
Visions of “Red Dawn,” fire fights with well-armed
but incompetent troops, camping out and feasting on venison seem to figure
heavily in these ill-conceived fantasies.
Let’s explore some of these myths. Anyone who has spent any
time in the wilderness or in actual combat knows that running and gunning is
the option of “LAST” resort!!!
When things get down to running and gunning your prospects
for long term survival have just become tragically thin. Even elite forces such
as the Navy Seals, try to avoid “running and gunning.” They operate
from a base.
They are inserted, do their jobs and are extracted back to
the safety of their base. In the scenario so often fantasized, it would be like
being permanently behind enemy lines with no support, no hope of extraction and
no supplies. Could you survive? Some could, but they are few and far between.
Let’s explore the notion of living off the land. The reality
is, there isn’t enough game in the UK, to support a group of any size for any
length of time. By the way, you’ve got to figure you’re not going to be the
“ONLY” person or group out there fighting for the limited resources.
Small game? How many rabbits will you have to kill to feed
yourself per day? Per week? How about your family? You’re going to run out of
rabbits pretty quick in whatever area you happen to be in. Fishing? That’s a
good plan if you’re near a body of water. But again, you’re not going to be the
only one with that idea.
Suppose you have a good day and harvest a deer, or twenty or
thirty fish, how are you going to preserve the meat? You’re probably aren’t
going to be lugging around a fridge or a freezer.
What about items you take for granted, like toilette paper?
How much are you going to carry with you on a bug-out? There are many things to
consider. The closest description of the bug-out experience is the Mountain Man
life style. However, it’s important to note, even the “Mountain Men”
had to come back to society for supplies every so often.
When you begin to consider all the ramifications of
“bugging-out,” the magnitude of what you’re attempting begins to
become clear.
Of course all this becomes a moot point if you become stuck
in a traffic jam trying to leave the city, or if you get rounded up at an
unexpected road block. A simple rule for survival in these circumstances is,
look at what everybody else is doing, and don’t do it!
Let’s be smart. The best place to be at in a survival
situation is your home. Your home should be your survival retreat! If it’s not,
make it into your survival retreat.
If it’s not suitably located, buy one or build one that is.
A well-conceived home location can become a survival retreat with some work and
The two most powerful assets you can have are storage and
concealment. If you want to understand survival, study the masters. The animal
kingdom is without exception the best place to learn survival.
Almost all animals, as a first line of defence use
concealment or camouflage. Even predators such as tigers, cheetahs and leopards
use camouflage to assist in their survival. How can we profit from this
The most important thing we can do as survivalist is to
“NOT” draw attention to ourselves. A friend of mine once suggested we join an
“intentional” community of likeminded people and live in a rural
communal setting. Visions of Waco and Ruby Ridge immediately sprang into my
mind. I told this friend I’d rather live next door to the local mayor. The
likelihood of them taking tanks through the Mayors garden to get to me would be
extremely slim.
In essence, “bugging-out” is like leaving the
safety of the herd. If you’ve ever seen predators hunt animals in the wild, the
first thing they do is cut them off from the protection of the herd. Then they
descend on them and rip them to pieces, while the rest of the herd looks on
grateful that it’s not them being ripped to pieces.
They’ve even gone so far as to justify what happened by
saying these people were extremist. This is very much like what happens in the
animal kingdom. Only the sickly and diseased fall prey to the lion. Hence, if
people are attacked by our government… they must be politically sick.
Too many times we trade the illusion of security for
reality. The reality is, everything is governed by chance and probability. Our
goal should be to turn a low probability of survival into a high probability of
Being a survivalist is a way of life. Is your home hardened?
Is it stocked and supplied? Are you constantly thinking of ways to manufacture
more of the things you go to the store and purchase? If your mate doesn’t sew,
do you?
Could you make a serviceable outfit out of cloth or fabric?
Or will you be reduced to foraging for garments if TEOTWAWKI comes in our life
time? It certainly looks like it’s just around the corner… Being able to
“Bug-Out” is good, but it should never become your primary survival
If you don’t have a hardened place to “Bug-Out”
to, you’re probably wasting your time. Your best bet is to harden your home.
Don’t blow your cover by bragging about your supplies, in
fact be extremely cautious about who you allow into your home. If things blow
up, you don’t want someone who’s seen and noted your food stores, showing up on
your door step with their family asking to share what you’ve set aside through
your hard labour and sacrifice.
The best neighbours are those that mind their own business.
Mind yours and insist they mind theirs. You want to develop a support network
of people who not only believe the way you do… but who believe strongly
enough to act on their beliefs. In a survival situation everyone must pull
their own weight.
UK Self Defence Items
Being in some US states it must be nice to be able to carry
a concealed firearm with you wherever you go to be able to protect
yourself and your family from any of the millions of crazy people in the world
who don’t have your best interest in mind. Unfortunately, I live in the UK were
it is illegal to carry any weapon.
Even if what you do carry is not a weapon and you use it to
defend yourself it will then be classes as a weapon, how stupid is that?
Some governments have decided that it is up to only a chosen
few to be able to do that and if you’re not lucky enough to be one of those
chosen few, you need to hope that you happen to have one in the room if
something happens – and hope they can take care of it on their own.
The chosen ones generally wear uniforms and I believe it to
be a very dangerous thing if the only ones with the weapons are the police.
As they say, when
seconds count, cops are just minutes away.
Luckily, there are many items that you can carry in public,
and into pretty much any establishment. These items also don’t draw attention
to yourself, in fact they are carried in open sight.
This is probably the most inconspicuous weapon of the group
but with some training it can be extremely effective. It’s an improvised weapon
that’s been taught to Special Forces and intelligence operatives for
The key is rolling it up tight and holding it in the right
spot. If you roll it toward the fold, you won’t have all the pages layered out
alongside it so it’ll hold up better. You can also pre-roll it and keep it
tight with rubber bands too, which would make it very effective, but now you’re
starting to lose the inconspicuousness of it.
I like the Elzetta ZFL-M60 Tactical Weapon-Grade LED Torch
which has a strike bezel in the front that would allow you to dig into an
opponent while striking them.
I think that would definitely stop someone if you got hit by
it. The problem is, that will also draw attention to you and some places don’t
allow them because they consider them weapons – and rightly so; there is no
other use for that tip than as a weapon.
The truth is, however, you don’t need that tip. Any torch of
the right size can be used just as effectively without it. Just as with the
newspaper, it’s all about where you strike.
Some of them have a mode where you can ‘disorient’ an
attacker with a strobe light and a good torch has a setting were you can chose
strobe or beam from the off.
The best ones to get will be ones that will extend out both
ends of your hand while holding it so you can strike from either direction, but
will also fit in your pocket and can be easily pulled out when you need it.
Walking Stick/umbrella
A walking stick or umbrella is probably the most effective
weapon on this list. It can give you more reach, can hit harder, and can give
you more leverage than anything else I have mentioned.
Most umbrellas are terrible weapons. They break easily and
have a tendency to pop open if you shuffle them around too much. There are
exceptions though. The U-115 is just one example of an umbrella that you can
use to defend yourself effectively but won’t be typically seen as any kind of a
It’s built very tough and is discreet. The problem with
umbrellas though is if it’s not raining or about to rain, you look a little
suspicious carrying it around.
However a sturdy walking stick can be used as a weapon
extremely well. You just have to pick one that doesn’t look like a weapon. The
key here is to find one that won’t break easily and has a heavy handle on the
You can get hardwood walking sticks with brass handles
fairly inexpensively. Contrary to what you may think; the fancier something
like this looks, the less likely it is that it would be confiscated.
Nicer things aren’t seen as often as being intended for
nefarious purposes. Don’t go for something that has a skull or dragon on it.
You don’t need to have a hidden knife to use a belt
effectively. You do need to find a belt and a pair of pants that will allow you
to pull it off quickly without your pants dropping to your ankles in a fight.
A wide leather belt with a heavy buckle works well. Just
watch that the loop near the buckle doesn’t catch on the front loop of your
pants, causing it to not want to come out.
I personally carry a tactical/survival pen a lot of
times because it’s now part of my personal EDC kit. These are really useful to
have but more likely to be seen as a potential threat than a normal pen will.
The fact is though, just about any pen can be used as a
weapon. All you need is to have an inch or so sticking out of your fist as you
hold it, and then use it to poke holes in the fleshy parts of your attacker.
UK Legal Spray
In conjunction with the items I have mentioned I also always
carry a UK legal spray, mine is made by Mace in the US and is readily available
in the UK at it gives
you the option of flight or fight.
I would rather be judged by twelve than carried by six.
Survival Weapons
For some people, the idea of being in the wilderness without
a weapon is very scary. In fact, I am often asked, “How do you defend
yourself?” I find this question quite amusing because I am to “defend
myself against what?
Wild attacking rabbits, squirrels, or ducks?” Unless a
person is attempting to survive in a combat area, the actual need for a weapon
for personal protection varies. In most cases no weapon is needed at all,
unless it is being used to assist the survivor in getting something to eat or
in jobs around camp. I would say that in the UK the need to have a weapon for
protection against wild animals is not very great.
 Most wild animals know man, and usually try to avoid
us. Now, if an animal is rabid though, anything is possible.
So, you feel the need for a weapon? I agree it is a good
idea to have one, but mainly to kill game caught in snares, traps, or cornered.
If you feel the need for safety and security and desire to have a large weapon,
you can make those as well.
A lot of the weapons you make will depend on how and where
you ended up in a survival situation. If you are a hunter and become lost, or
in some manner are faced with survival, you may have weapons with you. Or, you
may not. A lot of different situations can occur in the wilderness. Weapons can
be lost or broken.
If you are the survivor of a plane crash, a sinking or
overturned boat, (and the boat you were on washed up on shore, you will be in
luck.) or a stranded vehicle, you may have more materials to work with.
The wings of an aircraft will provide you with shade and
protection from the sun. But, vehicles can provide you with many items to make
tools, weapons, and other needed items. The weapons you can make from wreckage
or a stranded vehicle will be limited only by your imagination. Without any
wreckage the task of making weapons is harder, but not all that difficult.
Almost anything around you can become a weapon. Those of you
who have attended self-defence classes know that a pencil, car key, bottle,
book, comb, or even a thumb can become effective weapons.
Regardless of the type of weapon you may want, you will be
limited by the sources around you. In some areas you may not have many stones,
rocks, or even wood.
In other survival situations you may not even be on land,
you may be at sea. In all cases, look around and take inventory of all of your
equipment. Survivors have used the sharp edges from a ration can to make a
crude knife to gut fish with.
Others who used a sharpened belt buckle to cut with, and
still others who field dressed small game with their teeth. You have weapons
all around you, so look for them. Keep your imagination active at all times.
One of the most handy survival weapons is a simple club. It
is very useful in killing small game and for general camp use. It is simple to
make and can be constructed of many different materials. Using a forked piece
of green limb (hard wood works the best), a large rock or piece of bone, and
some vine, wire, or rope, you can make a club in next to no time.
Make sure the limb has a Y section on it and fit the rock
into this section, then secure the stone or bone in place using wire, rope,
cord, vine, or wet rawhide. Wet rawhide is the best because it will shrink as
it dries and holds the stone securely in place
A simple knife for stabbing with can be made from pieces of
bone or from an antler. Just break off or locate a piece that is large enough
to hold securely and has a sharp point. While you will not be able to cut with
it, it can be used to stab with. Or, you can use a sharp tipped piece of
If you need a knife to cut with, consider using sharp edged
bones, hard stone, metal from a wreckage, wood, or even glass for the blade. In
a survival situation you may have to use what you can find to make tools and
weapons with.
Almost any sharp edge from any hard material can be used. If
you want to take the time to make an affective knife. Find a piece of green
hard wood, split it slightly, insert your blade, and then wrap the handle tightly. Once again, wet rawhide
makes the best wrap because it shrinks when it dries and will hold the blade
firmly in place.
Another weapon that is easy to make is a spear. It is very
useful in killing any game you don’t want to touch or get too close to.
It could be what I call an injury causing animal. With
injury causing animals remember horns, antlers, teeth, fangs, and hooves can
all cause injuries.
A spear can be made as simply as sharpening the end of long
green piece of wood and hardening it in a fire. Or, you can attach a blade
point using the same types of materials you used for your knife blade.
And, the spear point can be attached exactly like your knife
blade was, using wire, vine, string, cord, or wet rawhide. An easier way to
attach a point to a spear shaft is to simply tie it one. Place a knife parallel
to and tightly up against the shaft of the spear. Then lash it on securely.
Two more weapons that you can make, and use mainly against
small game, are the catapult and bola.
For the catapult you start by cutting a Y shaped piece of
green wood, cutting two strips of rubber (from a tire or rubber tubing) about
eight inches long, and a pouch that can be made from cloth or leather.
Secure the two strips of rubber on both sides of the Y on
the wood near the top, tie the pouch to the open ends of the rubber strips, and
you now have a weapon. You can use small pebbles as ammo. And with practice you
can procure a bird or rabbit for dinner. A hint here, use two or three small
pebbles when you shoot (makes it more likely to hit the target).
The bola is much more difficult to use but is simple to
make. Tie all three ends of the pieces of string or cord parachute 550 cord is
best together at one end. At the other ends, tie a stone on each piece of line.
You now have three cords with a stone on each end that meets
and is secured at the other end. To use the bola, grasp the tied end, twirl it
over your head, release it toward your target. Once you release the bola, it
opens up and covers a very wide path.
While it is very effective against birds, it can also wrap
around the legs of larger game and trip it. Then, using your newly made spear
and knife, you can kill it and process the meat.
While the making and using of primitive weapons takes some
time, it can be done. I suggest using your spear to stab with, not throwing. If
you only have one spear and your throw it, what do you do if the animal turns
on you? Do not throw the only weapon you have available, keep it in your hands.
Plus, depending on the type of blade your spear has, you may
break it. These same weapons were used by early man many years ago and they
were deadly in the hands of a person who knew how to use them. The Native North
Americans kept their families alive with such weapons by providing both food
and protection. If others can do it, so can you.
There are unlimited sources around most survivors to use as
weapons. Keep in mind that some of these sources may not be recognized as such
by most survivors. Bone, glass, and rough metals, stones, antlers, horns, and
other materials can be modified for use as weapons. Keep your survival mind
active and evaluating all material at hand.
I realize there may be many more different types of weapons
made from natural materials, but as usual, my purpose is to get you thinking.
I want you to think about making weapons from materials you
have on hand. Some of the weapons I have explained can of course be made in
many different, and perhaps better ways.
Which Survival Knife
When one thinks of survival knives, images of Rambo come to
mind, as the name Survival Knife was actually coined after his film First
Let’s look at those knives and see the pros and cons. I will
be focusing on single edge fixed blade knives because of the safety and
function factors that should be addressed in a survival situation.
Most of these Survival Knives are large, Bowie style
blades with hollow handles and saws on the spines. 
Movies like Rambo made them popular and mass production and
a cheap price kept them popular. But trust me; there is a reason for the low
First let’s look at the handle construction. Hollow handles,
for the most part, are all fad and a huge “no no” in the survival
Don’t get me wrong, there are 1 or 2 custom makers that take
the time and use the right materials to make these knives work well like the
LMF II Survival Knife by Gerber.
This is not so in cheap mass production knives. Most are
held together with a single nut or rolled pin and they call it good.
Trust me, they will fail. Just take one on a camping trip
and try to build a shelter with one like I did. 10 chops and that was all she
So for the most part, unless you have to have a hollow
handle, let’s stick to a full tang with a comfortable, secure handle. You won’t
be sorry
Next let’s look at the blade. Once again double edge is a
big danger in a survival situation. You can’t afford the risk in the
A large blade can, and will, do everything a small blade
can do plus more.
Survival requires a lot of chopping, and large weight
foreword blades with a thick spine cut your work in half. That’s why machetes
are a huge part of outdoor life in many tribes around the world.
The saw back spine on early aviator knives were made for
aircraft escape, and found their way onto all outdoor knives mainly for looks
than for function.
It has been my experience that they don’t work that well on
wood, and it’s easy to pack a nice saw in a small survival kit. So if you
decide to stay with a small blade, you will have a saw to make up for it.
Blade steel is best left up to the person and situation. Air
crew may want to stick with the 499 Air Force Survival Knife – Ontario Knife
Company Stainless versions that require less maintenance.
But on the other hand, they are harder to sharpen in the
field. I like a blade with a high Carbon content. It takes more care and
maintenance, but the trade-off for a scalpel sharp edge that’s easy to keep is
worth it.
In both cases it is best to learn to sharpen your blades and
keep a sharpener with it at all times.
I really prefer the Chris-Caine Companion do some
homework and decide for yourself what would be best for you.
As with any tool, you £5.00 Wally World blade won’t last
long under stress. Remember your life is on the line. That being said, let’s
look at the specs of a good survival knife.
A quality survival knife has to feature high quality construction
with a reasonable. Put that into a full tang knife with a comfortable secure
handle, along with a good sized thick blade for chopping, with the right steel
for you and round it out with a usable sharpener and you’ve got yourself a nice
survival companion.
Now let’s put it in a package. Leather sheaths have been
around for a long time, and they work well. In many cases it is better to find
a sheath the fits securely that is made of a strong webbing and lined with a
thick plastic or better yet Kydex insert.
This will help protect you and your knife for years to come.
They usually hold up well in all conditions. Try to make sure it has a drain
hole so no water or dirt stays on the blade.
As a final thought, when you decide on a survival knife, be
sure and use it. I have seen too many sit in kits or on shelves and when the
time comes for the survivor to use it, they don’t know how.
Get in touch with your blade until it becomes an
extension of your arm. 
Safety is the key in all things survival. With a little
preparation and practice, you will come to trust your blade and yourself in any


Camping is not
camping without a fire?

A fire means heat,
light, and life. To many people, a campsite with no fire is just not camping. A
campfire means self-sufficiency, survival, and comfort.

The ability to enjoy
an outdoor adventure with alternate heat and light sources greatly expands your
opportunities and allows a more self-sufficient experience. The development of
lightweight, very efficient camp stoves has eliminated the real need for a fire
in most circumstances so it is now a choice to use a fire or a stove.

Why Have a Fire?

Warmth – a
fire warms you on a cold camping trip, but there are much better ways to stay
warm. Bringing appropriate clothing and having healthy food means less need for
fire. Campfire heat is useful for drying clothing and warming water to put in a
bottle in your sleeping bag to make it more comfortable.

whether it is boiling water or cooking meat, a fire is used to prepare food for

– watching the flames is relaxing and telling stories around a fire is a great
way to complete a strenuous day in the woods.

Campfire Alternatives
On any outdoor adventure, a source of heat for emergencies is required. You
should always be prepared to start a fire in a survival situation. But, a backpacking
is a great alternate source of heat from the campfire. Stoves have
many benefits over fires:

Fast – stoves have
nearly instant, ready-to-cook heat. No waiting for the fire. They also
extinguish immediately.

Clean – stoves have
no smoke and leave no ash or partially-burned wood. They do not create soot on

Safe – the risk of
wildfire is nearly eliminated with stoves.

Consistent – stoves
work at nearly any elevation, temperature, and elevation.

Choosing Fire or Stove
Before heading out on a wilderness adventure, it is a good idea to decide
whether campfires or stoves will be used for each day of the trip.

It may be decided to
have campfires some days and stoves on others. Some things to consider when
making the decision include:

Fire Danger – what
will the wind conditions, humidity, and vegetation dryness be like for the
location and season?

Fire Restrictions –
contact the local land managers to find out what types of fires are allowed in
the area.

Fuel Availability –
is there adequate fuel so fires will not deplete or impact the resource?

Group Skills – is
everyone in the group able to safely build and tend fires?

Menu – will the food
the group takes cook better over a stove or fire?


Leave No Trace Campfires
Once the decision is made to have a fire, the expertise of minimizing its
impact comes into play. There will be an impact to the area from any fire, but
there are many ways to reduce and disguise the impact.
Use existing fire
rings – in an established campsite, use the fire ring
If there is no fire
ring, do not make one. Instead, build a mound fire.
Build small fires –
create a fire just large enough to cook the food. Feed it fuel as needed.
Burn all wood to ash
– stop adding fuel to the fire well before bed-time or departure time so it has
time to burn itself out. This prevents having chunks of partially burned wood
to disperse.
Gather firewood
Use wood that is
down. Leave limbs on standing trees, even if they are dead limbs.
Use wood that is smaller
around than an adult’s wrist. It should be broken by hand – no saws or axes are
Leave larger logs
and limbs for habitat and to decompose into the soil.
Clean up after the
Scatter unused wood
as naturally as possible.
Push unburned ends
of wood into the fire as it burns down so it is all consumed.
When the coals have
burned to ash, soak well with water and make sure it is completely out. Use
water rather than dirt to put out the fire.
Collect the cold ash
and scatter it over a large area well away from the camp site.
Fires built on the
ground overheat the organic soil and kill the creepy crawlies living in it. It
may take a very long time for anything to grow in the spot where a fire was
An established fire
ring is a sacrificed spot in which fires are accepted to prevent destruction of
other areas.
In the absence of fire rings, rather than creating a fire directly on the
ground, it is better to insulate the organic soil from the heat of your fire by
using a camp stove, fire pan, or mound fire.
Fire Pans
A collapsible fire pan is a good way to have a campfire and greatly reduce its
impact. A metal pan with 3-inch sides perched on 4 or 5 stones allows a fire
without scorching the soil underneath.

Mound Fires
Another way to insulate soil is to cover it with a few inches of mineral soil
and build a fire on that. Mineral soil is found underneath the top layer of
rich, darker, organic soil. Mineral soil, sand, or gravel do not have the
thriving life in them that organic soil has so a fire on that material is ok.
To make a mound fire, follow these steps:

With a small shovel
or trowel, gather sand or mineral soil into a bag. Good places to look are the
root ball of a blown-down tree or a dry river bed. The bag can be a stuff sack
turned inside out to keep the inside clean.
Lay a ground cloth
on the spot where the fire will be built. This makes clean up easier. Some
sparks will land on the cloth and it will be worn and dirty from the ground so
use something sturdy and expendable.
Pour the sand onto
the ground cloth. Flatten the top of the pile so the mound is at least 4 inches
thick and bigger around than what the fire will be.
After cleaning up
the campfire, return the soil to its original location and clean away any
spills at the fire site.
Tips on Minimizing Campfire Impact
Prepare the group’s
expectations so they are aware of what fires will be used.
Practice with the
stoves being used so everyone is competent in their use.
Take advantage of
weather information for last minute planning.
Take along a few
candles. Use these in place of a campfire in your evening meeting place.
The stars and
darkness are a fun change from a campfire and storytelling can be more
Minimizing Campfire Impact is Important because:
Fires are
potentially the most dangerous and expensive impact we might have
It is the only LNT
principle aimed to control consumption of resources.


Hand Sanitizers
and Ebola – What You Need to Know

Ebola is a rare
(worldwide) but common viral disease in some West African countries which
causes bleeding inside and outside the body. Symptoms may appear anywhere from
2 to 21 days after exposure to the virus. Common Ebola signs and symptoms

Fever (Body temperature
greater than 38.6°C or 101.5°F)

Severe headache

Muscle pain




Abdominal (stomach)

haemorrhage (bleeding or bruising)

In the past few
weeks, cases have dramatically increased, with widespread and intense
transmission. In view of this, people have adopted many ways of preventing
infection and the use of hand sanitizers is no exception.

Hand Sanitizers

Washing the hands
with water and soap is always the best way to reduce the number of microbes on
them. Soap and water are not always available, as people are mostly always on
the move, hence the use of a portable alternative- hand sanitizers.
A hand sanitizer or hand antiseptic is a supplement or alternative to hand
washing with soap and water. Antiseptics are antimicrobial substances that are
applied to living tissue or skin to reduce the possibility of infection,
inflammation and decomposition of proteins (putrefaction).

 Many sanitizer preparations are available
including gel, foam and liquid solutions.
The active ingredient in most hand sanitizers is alcohol. The level of alcohol
varies between 60% and 85%. Alcohol rub sanitizers kill most bacterial, fungi
and stop some viruses.

Alcohol rub
sanitizers containing at least 70% alcohol kill 99.99% of the bacterial on
hands in one minute of application (you need contact time). Very high alcohol
(90%) sanitizers have very high veridical (virus-killing) activities against
many different kinds of viruses but are highly flammable and irritating to the
skin with prolong use.
Do Hand Sanitizers Stop Ebola?

Though some
sanitizers stop the activities of some viruses, only Supernova, an alcohol-free
sanitizer, provides immediate germ protection against Ebola. In addition to
washing of the hands frequently the following precautionary measures are highly

Avoid areas of known

Avoid contact with
infected people

Avoid eating wild

Use gloves and other


Do not handle
remains of those who died from Ebola.
I think avoiding
people suspected to be infected with the Ebola virus is the best way to avoid
becoming a victim, this means planning to bug-in.

Firstly let’s look at the facts about Ebola, Ebola has
killed around 5,000 up to now and each time a suspected case arrives in the
West on a plane the system wants to trace everyone who could have come in
contact with the victim


The World Health

I had a look at the WHO website and they say Influenza
occurs globally with an annual attack rate estimated at 5%–10% in adults and
20%–30% in children. Illnesses can result in hospitalization and death mainly
among high-risk groups (the very young, elderly or chronically ill).

Worldwide, these annual epidemics are estimated to result in
about 3 to 5 million cases of severe illness, and about 250 000 to 500 000

That is each and
every year, do they call that a pandemic, NO?

The system does not and never has tried to trace anyone who
could have come in contact with a victim who has died of the flu.

So what is going on?

I do not actually think that Ebola is the threat, I actually
think it is the vaccine that is the threat, and once they have us scared enough
and in fear of infection then we will blindly queue for the all saving jab,
well not this guy thank you very much.

Many scientists agree with what I have just said, while
other scientists claim that Ebola has been weaponised as a depopulation Bio
weapon, In any case these are my thoughts and you may or may not agree with me,
and that is OK.

With that in mind I wish to cover the Ebola subject on this
show plus the usual mix of interesting subjects on prepping and survival.

Ebola Pandemic

I cannot understand
why the infected areas are not under total quarantine and everyone confined for
21 days before being tested before travelling from that area.

I think it is now accepted that we will see Ebola infected
people here in the UK therefore I
thought you might like a list of things to have on hand in case a
government ordered quarantine, or a personal decision by you to seal yourself
off from society.

Supplies to have on hand:


N95 medical masks – at least 3 per person. “95” means that they keep out
95% of the airborne particles.

Contact a local medical supply store, or order online.
Cheaper if ordered in bulk but remember these will disappear quickly from the
shelves in a pandemic.


Liquid hand soap


Hand sanitizer (one for every family member)


Household bleach


Disinfectant wipes (plenty)


Rubbish bags (plenty as there may be limited rubbish collections)


Laundry detergent (if someone in your family is ill, you will be doing plenty of

Kleenex tissues (not fabric handkerchiefs

Toilet paper

Paper towels – Use instead of hand towels

Disposable nappies for children

Disposable latex gloves or other reusable gloves that can be disinfected


A supply of your prescription medications (in case you are
too sick to go out), non-prescription drugs, and other health supplies,
including pain relievers, stomach remedies, cough and cold medicines, fluids
with electrolytes, vitamins, rubbing alcohol, and thermometers.


Have a 2-week to 3-month supply of food at home (outside food may be difficult
to obtain or you may not be able to get out if you are ill).


To be honest the only way to ensure that you do not get
infected with Ebola is to isolate yourself from everyone else. Now we as
preppers are better off that non-preppers as we have food, water and other
essentials already and therefore we can simply lock the doors and bug-in.

I have found an American company that sell what they call
Quick Pandemic Kits for $12 they are wear and dispose and designed for people
like us who have to mix in areas with crowds. They are not designed for health
workers the company is

How to Make a
Survival Heater

Getting stranded in
your car can be a dangerous possibility, being stuck in your home during a
power cut can be equally as dangerous without the ability to heat your
surroundings. Therefore I suggest that you plan now to have the ability to
provide that lifesaving heat.

This is the equipment you will need

A small empty metal
tin: You want this to be slightly taller but thinner than a standard roll of
toilet paper. My can of choice is an unused 1 quart/ 2 pint paint tin found in
most DIY shops. You can also use an empty food tin that is the same size.

A larger metal tin
that can easily accommodate the first one: I use a 1 gallon unused paint tin
(again found in most DIY shops). Another option is a coffee tin or a metal
bucket and so on.

Some type of lid
that can be placed over the larger tin: I also like to get a lid for the
smaller can which I will explain later.

paper (unscented)

Six bottles of 70 to
91% isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol) seen on Ebay £2.229 for 500ml

Matches or some
other fire starter

This is what you do

Prepare the toilet
paper: The first step is to take out the central cardboard tube from the toilet
paper roll, leaving only the paper behind.

Squeeze the paper
into the smaller tin: Next you’ll want to squeeze and roll the paper into the
smaller tin. If the tin is so small that a full-size paper roll has no chance
of fitting inside it, then you can remove some of the external sheets (just
like you would if you were going to the bathroom) until it does squeeze into
the tin. It’s important that it fills up the entire volume of the can.

Add the fuel: If you
are now ready to use it, simply add the alcohol until the toilet roll inside
the can is completely saturated. One of the benefits of using a 1 quart/2 pint
paint tin is that you can store the stove with the fuel already added by
placing the air-tight lid over the can. This saves space and allows you to have
more fuel available. The lid can also be used to control the output of the

Place the smaller
tin into the larger one and position it in your car or room to be heated: The
larger tin provides an insulating barrier and some protection for passengers
and your car. You’ll also want to position it in a place that’s far enough from
anything combustible. Use the palm check. Put the back of your hand against the
surface you’re worried about and if you can’t keep your hand there without
burning it then it’s either to close or you’ll need to adjust the flame.

Light the stove:
First, open a window just a crack to provide some airflow and then carefully
place a match (or throw some sparks using a firesteel) onto the saturated
toilet paper and viola! You’ve got yourself a burning stove.

Use caution in
lighting as it will combust very quickly. It’s best to partially cover the
smaller tin with a lid to decrease the size of combustion (you can always
increase it later).

Controlling the Burn Rate

You may notice if
you follow the steps above, that a pretty sizable flame results from having the
smaller tin’s opening completely exposed. While this is fine if you want to
warm up faster, it does tend to go through the fuel fairly quickly and is not
so efficient.

A better way is to
partially cover the smaller tin with a lid. Or if you used a 1 quart/2 pint
paint tin, you can make a small hole (about the size of a 10p piece) in the lid
it comes with and place that on top of the can. Both of these methods control
the burn rate and allow the stove to provide a constant heat.

Another option is
instead of completely saturating the toilet roll you can pour just a few ounces
of alcohol on the paper and regularly add more as it burns up. This will also
control the size of the flame and conserve fuel. I prefer to use the lid method
over this one, since you don’t have to regularly add alcohol (it’s nice to
sleep for a stretch of time and not have to regularly add fuel)

A Word on Carbon Monoxide

I’m sure by now many
of you are thinking, “What about the dangers of carbon monoxide?”

Carbon monoxide is
produced from the partial oxidation of carbon-containing compounds. “Partial
oxidation” is just a big word for what happens when combustion (fire) takes
place in an area where there isn’t much oxygen. This is most apparent when one
operates a generator inside a home or if their wood stove is improperly vented.


In the case of this
alcohol stove, while there is risk of carbon monoxide emissions (rubbing
alcohol contains carbon: C3H7OH) the risk is very minimal. Opening your window
slightly should provide sufficient oxygen for a clean burn.
If you still are
concerned about it, I would recommend purchasing a battery-operated carbon
monoxide alarm and turning it on (putting in the batteries) when running the
stove. This will provide you ample warning should there be an issue.


How to Make
Char cloth

Fire making is a basic survival skill that must be learnt
then practiced regularly or you could find yourself stuck in the wilderness
without a way to boil your water or cook your food.

In order to make a fire, it’s more than just making a spark
from a magnesium firesteel, fire piston, flint and steel, or a flame from a
lighter. You need that ignition source to easily catch on to something that’ll
burn long enough for the kindling to catch, which is supposed to burn long
enough for your fuel wood to burn. That something is called Tinder.

The components of a good tinder are:

  • you
    have it with you or can find it when you need it
  • it
    catches fire easily in whatever weather or environment you’re in
  • it
    burns long enough to catch your kindling on fire


I have to say that having one of Bushcraft tools fire
pistons I recommend Char Cloth. Technically, char cloth is an addition to your
tinder stock.

So what is char
cloth I hear you ask?

Char cloth is an organic material (like cotton) that has
been heated enough that all (most) of the gasses inside have left but has been
protected from burning itself up.

When something burns, it’s actually a chemical reaction with
oxygen or a similar gas. When something like wood or cotton burns, chemicals
like carbon monoxide, hydrogen and carbon dioxide are
released into the air.

If you heat up something like cotton to a certain point and
don’t let oxygen into the area for it to burn, the gasses will be released but
the material itself won’t combust. That’s essentially all you need to do to
make char cloth in theory, but let’s look at how you make it.

How do you make
charred cloth?

The simplest prepper method of making char cloth is to take
something like pieces of cotton from a t-shirt or old jeans and put it into a
small tin, like an altoids tin or an air pellet tin. You can also use a tuna
tin, coffee tin etc. as long as you can seal it fairly well after you put the
material in it and it won’t burn itself up.

I wanted to make some char cloth just using stuff I had
lying around the house so instead of an altoids tin I used an old pellet tin I
had lying around.

You need the gasses to escape from the inside after they’re
released from the cotton, so you need to poke a small hole in the tin with
something like a nail. You don’t want it too big though, or oxygen will get in
and your fabric will catch fire.

I got my Gillie Kettle out and lit it and put the old pellet
tin on top then I cut a strip denim from some old jeans about as wide as the
tin is long, rolled it up and put it into the tin. The smoke was coming out of
the hole in the top of the tin, and if I was to put a flame to it, that smoke
would catch fire.

This is essentially a mini-gasifier. That gas is flammable
enough to be used in a generator or carb for an engine.

Then, you just cook the tin in the fire for a while until
you don’t see any more smoke coming out, and that’s it. Depending on how much
stuff you have, how big your tin is and how hot your fire is, it should take
anywhere from 15-45 minutes. 

Obviously, the proof is in the pudding so I took out my
magnesium fire starter that I keep in my pocket as a part of my EDC kit, and it
lit after one spark.

That’s really all there is to it. You should experiment with
different types of fabrics and different temperatures and times to heat it up
but it’s not really all that hard. You don’t even need to use cloth. Almost any
organic material should work, such as wood or plant fibres. You just need to
get all the gasses out without burning it.

Char cloth vs other tinder?

Char cloth catches so easily that just one spark will
usually catch, so not only can you place it right under your tinder bundle,
things like a breeze or damp air shouldn’t be a problem. It will burn usually
for a few minutes too, giving it enough time to catch. Because it doesn’t
give off a flame though, char cloth isn’t really going to be able to catch kindling.

Other tinder like dry leaves, grass, cat tail fluff, etc.
burns pretty well but isn’t always easy to catch from a spark. Especially if
it’s damp out.

Putting them together though, makes a powerful combination.

How to use char cloth to start a fire.


Char cloth catches easily but it won’t burn hot enough to
catch twigs on fire unless they’re REALLY tiny.
You also probably won’t have a lot of char cloth in your
kit. It will, however, burn enough to catch other tinder on fire. By making a
tinder bundle out of dry material that burns quickly and then putting the char
cloth in side it, you make an easy-to-light pile of stuff known as a nest that
will burn hot enough to catch twigs.
Having a successful fire started is all about sticking to
the sequence of fire starting. The spark catches the char cloth. The char cloth
catches the rest of the tinder. The tinder then catches your kindling. The
kindling catches the fuel wood and you can then boil water or cook a meal.
Nigel at has offered
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Walking Home – Survival Tips

Here are three survival (security) tips that are free, and
won’t cost you anything. 

There is a caveat though, that is you may need to force a
slight change in your behaviour and habits.

In today’s world of increasing economic woes, more
individuals are turning towards criminal behaviour as they become angrier,
looking for someone to blame, and may be downright desperate. 

You, as a ‘normal’
person, may be walking among them from time to time and you don’t even know it
or recognize it.

To a large extent, the key to avoid being victimized is to
simply be aware. Awareness consciously (and subconsciously) changes your own
behaviour such that you will be more likely to avoid dangerous situations that
could escalate into violence.

Let me define
‘awareness’ in the context of your self-security:

Well firstly you should know what is happening or has
happened in your field of travel, you should also look around you (and behind
you) while moving (walking, driving, etc) and even outside your home, make eye
contact while scanning in crowded public places.

Whether by paying attention to the news or ‘hearsay’,
understand the history of the area you are about to travel in. 

Most people over time will come to understand where the
‘bad’ areas are in their local region – areas especially vulnerable to crime.

If you are new to the area, or if traveling outside your own
area, make an effort to discover where these ‘bad’ areas are. 

A great tool to look for crime reports is on, which shows maps dotted with crime reports in Canada, the
U.S., and the U

This simple behaviour is more effective than you may
imagine. The reason being, is that so many people do not do this, they are
ignorant to their surroundings, and are the first to become victims.

Predators look for the weaker prey. Someone who is looking
down, or who appears to be in their own little world, they are prime targets
for criminals.

Instead, you should scan around you from time to time, with
your head up straight, as you walk with purpose – shoulders back, and
confident. Not only might you avoid an unruly-looking gang of troublemakers,
but they might avoid targeting YOU.

Make eye contact while scanning in crowded public places

Making purposeful, but quick eye contact is another very
effective deterrent to a criminal. 

Here’s the reason… Most people purposely avoid eye contact
in public places.

They want to remain in their own little world and by looking
down or avoiding eye contact, they are convinced that they will remain in that
cocoon. The reality is that they are entirely wrong.

Sure, that type of behaviour may avoid unwanted conversation
that otherwise might initiate from a stranger, but that’s about it… By
occasionally scanning and making quick eye contact with others, tells any
potential criminal that you are not afraid. 

‘Quick’ eye contact simply means don’t stare. Staring will
provoke a stranger.

Is this type of behaviour simply a bunch of paranoia? Do you
have to walk around being paranoid to avoid being in the wrong place at the
wrong time? No, of course not.

Granted, for some people, learning to do these simple things
will feel uncomfortable at first – and they may feel as though they are being
paranoid. However, after a while, this will become part of you, just like being
able to carry on a conversation with someone while driving a car. It’s no big

Bolster some confidence while you’re out and about. It may
unknowingly ward off a pick-pocket, purse-snatcher, or worse criminal, without
you even knowing it happened!

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Quick Tips and

Survival glue

When you are out in the wilderness, glue can
come in handy for attaching feathers to arrows or setting arrowheads. Simple
but strong glue can be made from pine sap and deer dung. The two ingredients
are heated using a tin or a hot rock. Heat up the pine sap and mix in crushed
deer dung. Stir the mixture until you have a thick paste.

While hot the
mixture is used just like you would normally use glue. Use a stick to apply the
glue as it is very hot and will stain your hands black. Not only that but it
has deer dung in it. That should give you enough of a clue not to use your
fingers to apply it.

Survival Lantern

If you find a drink can you can make a lantern
out of it. Cut a slit about an inch from the top and an inch from the bottom.
Make the cut about half way around the can. Then cut in the centre of the two
cuts to join them. The two pieces can be folded out to reflect light. The
lantern can be hung by the tab at the top of the can. In the can you can use a
small candle or you could have a small fire.

A-Frame Shelter

The A- Frame shelter is a great form of
shelter. Start by supporting a centre beam. Then branches are leaned up against
the beam to form the roof. Once you have a good solid frame, then you can start
to cover it with grass, leaves or spruce branches. Always start with your
roofing material at the bottom, and then work your way up.

This creates a
shingle effect, thus shedding rain and snow. If you are using branches, always
have the thickest part of the branch facing up so the rain will follow the
branched down. In general, the grass roof will stay dryer than the roof made
from branches because it is denser and there are more fibres for the rain to
follow down to the ground.

If you need to heat
your shelter, build a small fire approximately one pace from the front opening.
Behind the fire build a reflector wall. This is a short wall which will reflect
the heat from the fire back into the shelter. If built properly, this shelter
will keep you warm and dry.

Whenever you build a
fire near your shelter, remember that natural materials are flammable. Use
utmost precaution.

A Lean-To Shelter

The lean-to shelter is probably the simplest
and fastest shelter to construct. You need a horizontal branch which can be
tied between two trees or supported by two branches. Then branches are leaned
against the windward side to create an angled roof. The roof can than be
covered with branches grass or a tarp if you happen to have one.


If you need to heat your shelter, build a small fire approximately one pace
from the front opening. Behind the fire build a reflector wall. This is a short
wall which will reflect the heat from the fire back into the shelter. If built
properly, this shelter will keep you warm and dry.

Whenever you build a fire near your shelter, remember that natural materials
are flammable. Use utmost precaution.

Starting a fire

Ever wondered how the first settlers in this
great country started fire. Many of them wore a small leather pouch around
their necks. In the pouch was a rock, a striker, and a small tin. The tin
contained char cloth.

Char cloth is a natural fibre that has been chemically altered by heating in
the absence of oxygen. A piece of cotton, jute or cattail fluff is placed in a
tin with a small hole in the top. It is then thrown in a fire. Smoke will
escape from the hole in the tin. When the material stops smoking it is

Remove from the fire but do not open until it has cooled or it will start to
burn when it gets access to oxygen. After the char cloth is cooled it will
start to glow immediately when a spark lands on it. It is very hard to
extinguish once it has been ignited. The glowing piece of char cloth is then
placed in a nest of dry grass or other tinder. Blow on the tinder until it
bursts into flame.

The striker is a piece of hardened high carbon steel usually bent in a oval
shape so it is easy to hold. When a rock is struck against it a small piece of
molten metal is shaved off the striker causing what appears to be a spark. If
you can get the spark to land on the char cloth you have a glowing ember, and
the beginning of fire.

Survival Mistakes

Wilderness survival techniques are arguably a matter of life
and death. Turning into a self-sufficient survivor does not happen at the snap
of a finger. 

It takes knowledge, proper gear, and preparation. By
planning for the worst before it happens you could be saving your life and

According to some of the top wilderness survival websites,
there are eight common mistakes that can cost you big in the wild. The first is
no shelter, which really turns into a double barrelled mistake. If you do not
have a proper shelter with you or lack the knowledge to build one with what is
around you-you might be in trouble. 

It is vital to
create a shelter that keeps you dry and limits exposure to the elements,
especially the wind.

The second biggest wilderness survival mistake is being
caught without a working navigational tool. It is easy to get turned around in
the middle of thick bushes and trees. A map and a compass are failsafe
standards any wilderness adventurer should pack.

Thanks to technology, a GPS is a handy tool as well. GPS
devices are small, compact, and generally able to work for a descent time
period if kept at full charge. Keep navigational tools with you at all

Learning how to
utilize cardinal directions by the sun and stars is also beneficial.

Another common mistake that can cost you is lack of
knowledge and preparation.  

There are five key
things you should be knowledgeable of first:

How to build shelter

How to signal for assistance

What is safe to eat and how to find it

How to build and maintain a fire

How to locate water and safely prepare it

Never underestimate the risk factor. The most innocent of
outdoor excursions-fishing, hiking, hunting-can turn into a wilderness survival
situation. Always be prepared.

Don’t be caught with the wrong clothing. A rule of thumb is
to always dress in layers, making the outer layer warmer than what you should
need. Research indicates that most hypothermia cases develop in temperatures
over 40 degrees Fahrenheit thanks to lack of proper clothing.

Water is essential
to survive. 

The problem is finding drinkable water. Waterborne organisms
can cause severe diarrhoea and vomiting, which increases dehydration. Carry a
supply of pure drinking water along with the ability to filter water by
boiling, chemical tablets, or filters.

Finally, be sure to have a signal plan and know how to
create and maintain a fire. Almost any outdoor/camping supplier has sections
dedicated to signal devices. Whistles, mirrors, high beam torches, and fire
starting devices are all easy to carry signal devices. Couple these with
learning how to create your own emergency signal by using trees, rocks, dirt,
or even snow.

Fire is vital to wilderness survival. It can warm, protect,
and heat food or boil water. You can even use it to signal for help. 

Do not underestimate learning how to make and maintain a
fire. Take time to prepare for your outdoor excursions and you will be able to
tackle whatever kinks come your way.

When it comes to survival skills, the smallest of mistakes
could have a huge impact on your ability to stay safe. 

However, there are a few things which can help to avoid
making such mistakes, and will ensure that your survival skills are as
effective as possible.

If you find your survival skills being put to the test
unexpectedly, then the natural reaction can be to panic. 

However, this is often the worst thing you can do, as you
need to be thinking as clearly as possible in such situations.

You might not be able to simply google ‘survival techniques’
whilst checking your facebook page and playing cheeky bingo, but if you have
done your research, then you will already be well prepared. 


You simply need to
keep a clear head, and remember all the skills which you have learnt.
Often, people panic the most when it comes to putting up a
shelter, and tend to rush the process. In actual fact, it is worth spending
extra time making sure that your shelter is safe and secure, and unlikely to
collapse without warning, OH! And water and wind proof as well.

Worms and the
Threat the Represent

Worms are generally
a problem for dogs and cats in the UK but it was not so long ago that many
parasites also frequently infected humans.
With the lowered standards
of sanitation, footwear, and general health in the aftermath of a disaster, the
worms would likely rise again to infest large portions of our population.
Depending on the kind of worm and the severity of the infection, you may feel
no symptoms at all or you may suffer from nutritional deficiencies, anaemia,
diarrhoea, and general pain in infected areas.
Although this topic
is one that makes your skin crawl, as a prepared person you must know how to
combat these bodily invaders, and how to keep them from infesting you in the
first place!
How worms infect people
Although there are
literally dozens of worms that could infect people, many of them follow certain
patterns that can help you to understand how to avoid being infested in the
first place.
Firstly, most worm
eggs are passed through faecal matter or the area around the anus in general.
This means that the primary method of preventing infection is proper washing,
toilet use, and sanitation.
Children are
particularly susceptible to worms for this reason, since they often forget to
properly clean themselves and the nutrient deficiencies common to these
infections cause them far greater developmental harm.
Secondly, the eggs
generally do not infect only people who have direct faecal contact with eggs.
Rather, the eggs are intended to travel along hands after wiping, or on
clothing or even by dust and wind.
From there, they
land on food or in water sources where they are then ingested, the eggs hatch,
and the parasites find their proper home to begin pumping out hundreds of
thousands of eggs to continue the cycle. In some circumstances, worms can also
arrive by burrowing in via tender areas of the feet or via the anus if mature
worms are found in water sources.
Finally, it can be
rather difficult to determine if a person is infected meaning that quarantine
is usually a futile effort.
The headaches,
pains, and even nutritional deficiencies caused by worms can also be caused by
other viruses and bacteria meaning that the only way to definitely determine a
worm infestation is by examining stool samples under a microscope.
Furthermore, many
worm eggs are resistant to ph changes (in order to survive passing through the
stomach when ingested), cold, and even heat in some cases making them nearly
impossible to truly eradicate. The key point here being that worm prevention is
a constant task for all people, infested and non-infested particularly during a
Proper hand washing,
toilet use, food washing, and water sanitation will be vital to preventing worm
infestations as it is always a potential hazard for any group regardless of
How to prevent infestations
As stated above,
sanitation of food and water sources is key though each will have different
sources of potential contamination.
Food, for example is
usually contaminated either by dust-borne eggs or by the dirty hands of those
who cooked and prepared the food. This makes prevention more a matter of
cleanliness on your group’s part.
Washing hands today
is often seen as a largely social thing, done for the sake of not being grossed
out by nasty hands. It is imperative that every group member understand that in
a survival situation proper washing and wiping is a matter of life and death,
and something to be taken extremely seriously.
Water taken directly
from a stream or creek can have parasitic eggs floating about in it. Make sure
you filter and boil it first!
Water, on the other
hand is usually contaminated by general nature since many animals will defecate
in or near streams and runoff will send many, many millions more eggs coursing
through rivers and lakes.
Thankfully even tiny
worm eggs are typically massive when compared to the microbes and viruses that
many filters can catch, making filtered water a necessity both for drinking and


To keep the
dust-borne eggs out, cover all filtered water sources and boil water when
possible. As a final point, you should still take pains to keep faecal matter
from latrines away from water sources since adding even more eggs to the water
is only going to clog your filter faster, or infest local animals that you may


Finally, although
worms that infect by foot are not as common they are still present and should
be fought off diligently. Fortunately, just wearing solid shoes with good soles
can act as excellent protection. The worms mainly burrow into tender areas such
as the space between the toes, so they are incapable of penetrating even thin
rubber or foam soles much less good boots or tennis shoes. Even sandals are
better than going barefoot in a pinch!

Treating infestations

Unfortunately the
human body fares rather poorly against parasites like these since they are
designed specifically to get past your defences.


Generally you will
need de-worming medication that contains certain poisons and enzymes that
attack the worm allowing its corpse to be expelled properly. Generally termed
“anthelmintics”, popular meds of this type include the family
of Benzimidazoles, Ambacetin, Ivermectin, and Monepantel.
Be aware that not
all of these are necessarily intended for human use but I listed them in case
you also wished to have some on hand for meat bearing animals. I would always strongly recommend speaking to your
doctor or vet about acquiring any anti-worming medication for people or animals,
If you cannot
actually remove them, the next best step is to prevent reinfection if at all
possible by maintaining proper cleanliness standards.
Apart from certain
worms that can live for decades most die within 2-3 years at most and mild
infections are generally annoyances at best. If constant reinfection is
permitted, however, chronic infestations can easily kill a person as they are
drained of nutrients from within or certain organs become blocked with worms.
If someone is found
to have worms of any kind, therefore, they should not be permitted to handle
any food but their own and all utensils, clothing, and bedding of theirs should
be cleaned thoroughly apart from everyone else’s.

 Worms are
nasty, but thankfully prevention is as simple as keeping everyone clean and
filtering their water thoroughly. The threat will be ever-present in a survival
situation however, so be sure you take the steps needed to prevent any

I am not medically trained and I hope I never have to become personally familiar with parasitic
This information is
to be used during SHTF situations and other manmade or natural disasters when
real medical care is unavailable: if you have any concerns about parasites
always speak with your doctor!


A Rough Guide to Radioactivity

The word
radiation covers a lot of ground but in the nuclear context we’re talking about
‘ionising radiation’, which basically means streams of invisible waves or
particles with sufficient energy to knock electrons out of atoms, creating
ions, resulting in chemical changes to materials at the molecular level.


There are
three different types of naturally occurring radiation, designated Alpha, Beta
and Gamma.


particles are the biggest and composed of two protons and two neutrons but they
are also the weakest and cannot penetrate more than a few centimetres of air
and even have trouble getting through a few sheets of paper. However, that
actually makes Alpha radiation quite dangerous — at close quarters and in very
high doses — because the particles are so big they are more likely to
interact with and cause chemical and biological changes to whatever they happen
to smash into


particles are essentially loose electrons or positrons, they have more
energy and penetrating power than Alpha particles and can punch through a few
millimetres of wood or metal. Like all radiation, if there’s enough of it, it
will change or damage whatever it comes into contact with.


particles (or waves) are essentially high-energy photons — the same stuff as
light and the gamma radiation family also includes X-Rays. Gamma radiation has
no charge but it packs a lot of energy. However, because the particles are so
small they can pass right through matter without hitting anything, but once
again if there’s enough of it then it can and will cause chemical and
biological changes


radiation  sounds like a bad thing but the fact is we are being constantly
bombarded with natural radiation, from the food we eat (Brazil nuts are notoriously radioactive),
rocks and minerals, water, air, cosmic rays from outer space and a wide range
of consumer
in and
around the home, from smoke alarms and fluorescent lamps to old clocks and
watches with luminous hands.

Even our
own bodies are naturally
e, and it’s not just the nicotine
and tar in tobacco that can kill you. In the
past sixty years there has been a small but measurable increase in the
background radiation from such things as nuclear power generation, fallout from
nuclear weapons, moreover your exposure to ionising radiation is significantly
increased if you have an X-Ray, travel regularly by air or undergo radiological



The point
is the human race has been exposed to low level doses of radioactivity since
the year dot. We have evolved to deal with it, it may even have had a part to
play in the evolutionary process, and it’s when we get too much of it that
things can go wrong.

can say with some certainty how much radiation will kill you outright, and the
sort of exposure that will make you sick but these tend to massively large
doses that we are never likely to encounter in our normal day-to-day lives.
When it comes to very low levels exposure no one can say exactly how much is
bad for you.



Unfortunately no-one
knows. It depends on a multitude of factors including age, gender, genetic
makeup, where you live, what you
eat and needless to say, which experts you talk to. There are clear
beneficial effects and controlled exposure to high doses of ionising radiation
is a cornerstone of modern Nuclear
; some even suggest that
small doses can be good
for you
, therapies, like those offered in
this Radon
are claimed to date back 6000

it is generally accepted that most of us, on average, receive a dose
of between 100 and 200 millirem (1- 2 millisievert) of radiation per year (the
millirem is a measurement of absorbed radiation dosage and 100 mrem = 1

We live
to tell the tale because almost all of it comes from natural sources and
it is a part of our normal environment.


Around 70
to 80 mrem comes from purely natural sources, as much as 11% of that from
naturally-occurring materials in our own
bodies. Apparently you will receive an 0.05 microsievert
dose sleeping next to someone for 8 hours, even porcelain
crowns and living within 50 miles
of a coal plant
 produces a measurable dose.

The rest
is man-made with the bulk of it coming from hospital and dental X-Rays and
medical treatments, 4 – 6 mrem comes from nuclear power plant emissions and
leakage and fallout from nuclear weapons plus 1 to 2 mrem from consumer
products, such as smoke detectors and so on.


internationally agreed limits for exposure to radiation for those working in
the nuclear industry is a maximum whole body dose of 5,000 mrem (or 5 rem) per
year. For the rest of us exposure levels are significantly lower.

A chest
X-Ray, for example typically gives a surface dose of 50 to 80 mrem, abdominal
X-rays can be up to 600mrem whilst a full body CT Scan can be as high as 1000
mrems. For the record a whole body dose of 500 rem will be enough to kill you,
usually within one to two weeks whilst a dose of 100 rem will cause severe
radiation sickness.

Knowledge & Training

To be
honest emergency preparedness isn’t all about storing food and water,
about knowing what to do and being ready for anything. If you don’t know what
to do in different situations you won’t last very long. You need the knowledge,
the training, and even the practice of different skills to be prepared.
the point of having supplies if you don’t know what to do with them?



the point of having canned food storage if you don’t know to rotate it? What’s
the point of having a water filter if you don’t know how to use it? Yes, all of
these examples are common sense things, but it is a real problem.



other things do need more practice and knowledge however. Do you know



how to make meals from scratch, shoot a gun accurately and consistently, have
the skills of an outdoorsman and know how to catch your own food? There are
countless numbers of different skills that you can have and it would be wise to
at least learn a little of each of them.



Of course
the good skills to have are outdoor survival skills. Things that you would use
on a camping, hiking, or fishing trip, skills you would need if you were lost
in the






like making fires, finding or building shelter, hunting and fishing, and



cooking, and cleaning food all could mean life or death at some point.



skills are not too hard to get the basic understandings of.



By no
means do you have to be a master at anything. You just need to know what



you are
doing enough to survive. Survival doesn’t mean perfection, as just getting by
works. As long as you have a basic understanding of different things and are a
well-rounded person, you will be much better off.



University of YouTube will teach you just about anything you want to know.



Be sure
to pass on your knowledge and things that you know to your community


group. Share ideas with them, plan, and learn from them.



They can
help you and other people will definitely know things that you don’t. Teach
your children valuable skills and imprint the ideas of preparedness on them
early so they will grow up knowing it and being familiar with it.
overload them and make them crazy, but make sure that they realize the
importance of emergency preparedness.
Go out to
the gun range and practice, go on camping trips where you are cut off


from the
world, use some of your stored food. Get a sense for how life would be if you
ever needed to use your preps.



Make sure
you practice with everything you are preparing for, so when the time comes you
will know what to do.
If you
know what you’re doing it will be much easier to stay calm and in control. If
you have never done something before you may start to panic, and panic leads to
and training are just another form of preparation, and in the ultimate


quest to
be prepared, this is something that cannot be overlooked. Know what you are



Know how
to survive

How to Stop Bleeding With Black Pepper

When it comes to survival and wilderness first aid, I highly
recommend you carry a blood clotting agent with you in your first aid kit,
personally I believe that CELOX produce the best consumer available blood
clotting agent, as unlike many other brands, CELOX is also effective for people
on blood thinners such as heparin and warfarin etc. You can purchase CELOX from
Amazon. It is quite expensive, but simply put – it could save your life one

If you do not have a clotting agent such as CELOX, you can
in fact use simple ground black pepper to stop bleeding quickly for small to
medium sized cuts/wounds.  Black pepper
is naturally antibacterial and makes blood coagulate quickly and stops

Black pepper was commonly used by soldiers in the Second
World War, and even today it is often used in professional kitchens (probably
due to its availability) to stop cuts from bleeding.



It couldn’t be simpler to use black pepper to stop bleeding
– simply pour a generous amount of ground black pepper onto the wound and apply
pressure (and bandage if necessary) and it should quickly stop bleeding (please
use common sense though as serious cuts may still require the attention of a
doctor). Note: Finely ground black pepper works best, and no, black pepper does
not sting when put on a cut!



Personally I keep some Black Pepper in my first aid kits for
emergencies, and for day-to-day and around the home, black pepper is a useful
alternative for smaller wounds.



By the way I am not a medical expert, this information is
based on my own experience and research. Please do your own research and
exercise common sense before trying this. If you have an existing medical
condition or allergy, please check that this won’t interfere with your
condition or medication.

Survival Gadgets

If your idea of a fun day or exciting holiday involves
roughing it in the wilderness, you know how important it is to have the proper
tools and equipment with you.

There are basic things you need to maintain safety and
well-being while out in the wild, and there are also some extras that make
wilderness survival less challenging and more fun. The next time you’re
planning an outdoor adventure, include some of these gadgets and tools for
emergency preparedness and survival.
Basic Survival Skills
The best tool for
survival is of course first and foremost yourself.

Make sure you know basic survival skills. The first skill in
basic survival is to ensure that a bad situation doesn’t escalate and become

To deal with an emergency situation one must be able to make
decisions, improvise and remain calm. Great for the amateur and hard-core
enthusiast, who better to learn survival tactics from than the British Army.

The SAS Survival Guide not only teaches you how to build a
fire but also how to build a fire with wet wood! Includes information on all
the basics for food, water, shelter – plus first aid, identifying edible and
medicinal plants, animals, navigation, psychology of survival, and so on.
Compass or GPS

A compass or GPS system is vital, even if you know the area.
It’s easy to get turned around when you’re deep in the wilderness and
everything starts to look the same. If you’re using a mobile phone-based GPS
system such as Compass Professional make sure you’ll have access to a signal.
Sun & Heat

You may not think that lack of sun protection can lead to an
emergency, but overexposure to heat and sun can place your health at-risk when
you’re out in the wild. In addition to having sunscreen and a hat, carry a
water purification system so you can keep hydrated with water that’s safe for

The Weather Channel app provides all type of weather reports
including interactive maps with animated radar, weather alerts for your
locations, videos of breaking news and weather coverage and lots more.

Knowing if a storm or cold weather is coming in will help
you prepare in advance for potential weather related issues.
Torch or Headlamp

Even if you’ve made camp by nightfall, you’ll still want to
have a torch or headlamp handy to navigate around your campsite. A headlamp allows
you to remain hands-free while hiking or finding a spot to relieve yourself.

The Coleman Lantern app lets you choose from 10 different
lanterns that fill your campsite with bright, white light. It also lets you
choose how bright you want it to shine. You can use it in the car, walking at
night and reading in bed. It’s free to add to your iPhone.
First Aid Kit

A proper first aid kit is another wilderness survival
must-have; a well-stocked first aid kit will help you to be better prepared for
emergencies and natural disasters. The contents should change to match where
the kit will be stored and how it will be used.

In addition to carrying a fully stocked, compact first aid
kit, there are also first aid apps, such as GotoAID, which provide a person immediate
access to first aid information. With 420 total topics the information on
GotoAid ranges from treating a bee sting to delivering a baby.
Waterproof Matches
and Fire Starters

No matter how good you are at starting fires, there are
always times when the wood’s too wet or too green. Carry waterproof matches as
backups to your lighter and have fire starters to get the kindling going enough
to build a good fire.
Mess Kit

Carry a mess kit that serves multiple uses, such as cooking,
eating and washing your utensils. One that contains a bowl/pot, plate, cup and
eating utensils should do the trick. Food hints and recipes for mess kit
cooking can be found on-line, however when you fancy a touch of extravagance,
although costly, try the MRE which now almost reach gourmet standards.
Tarp and Blanket

A tarp is another multipurpose item that can help you
maintain your well-being while out in the wild. Use it as a tent in inclement
weather, to cover your food or as a ground cover. Bring along a thin, wool blanket
to ensure a good night’s sleep and sufficient warmth.

Knots and lashings are useful both around camp and in a
survival situation to construct an improvised shelter. A right knot can save
your life, that’s why Knot guide app, using photographs, shows you how to tie a
neat and clean knot and takes you through tying eleven most common general
knots for different situations.
Know Your Wilderness

Even if you’ve brought sufficient food or are catching your
food out in the water or woods, you may be tempted to enjoy those luscious
berries or tasty-looking mushrooms. Before you add any wild fruits or
vegetables to your wilderness meals, check them on a wilderness edibles app,
such as Wild Edibles Database, to ensure they’re safe to eat. Even those who
consider themselves to be wilderness experts can experience mishaps in the
outdoors that can cause an otherwise exciting adventure to turn sour.

Make sure that you have the basics you need, as well as any
extra gadgets, equipment or tools. The items you bring with you will vary
depending on the season, your location and the length of your adventure. Take
time to anticipate all your needs in the wild so you can prepare accordingly.

5 More Survival
Uses of Pine Resin

Pine resin has multiple uses for survival. This sap is
produced by the pine tree to seal up cuts or damage to the tree. If you ever
find yourself lost in a wooded area, having a pine tree            will really make a difference to your survival chances.



There are many different species of pine trees but they
generally prefer open and sunny areas. They are found abundantly throughout
North America, they are also found throughout Central America and Europe.



Native Americans used pine sap for medicinal purposes. The
resin is either chewed on or made into a beverage by mixing with water. It is
known to be very effective in treating stomach ulcers and rheumatoid arthritis.



To find pine resin look for the damaged part of the pine
tree because that will be where the resin secretions are. The resin will be dry
and hardened but can be softened with heat. Look for damaged or fallen limbs
first before you purposely cut into the pine tree’s bark for the sap.



If you have to damage the tree, do it in a small area on one
side only. Also, take only as much resin as you will need and leave some on the
tree to protect the cut from boring insects.



The Survival Uses 0f Pine Resin



1. First aid.



When you’re outdoors camping or in a survival situation,
cutting accidents will almost always happen. Pine resin can be applied directly
over the wound to stem blood flow almost at once. The resin will also inhibit
the growth and spread of bacteria because of its sticky nature which denies the
bacteria the moisture it needs to survive.



Just leave the resin in place until it dries out. The resin
will close the wound up the same way stitching it up would. You may reapply
resin as needed. You can also use the sap to treat blisters, burns and



2. Use the resin to make shoes and other items



Heat the resin to liquid form and then apply it to the
material you want to make impervious to water like the lower half of your
hiking boots. You can also use resin to seal seams, repair holes in shoes,
boats or structures to prevent leaks. When heating the resin, use a deep
container to keep the sap away from open flame. Pine resin can ignite easily.



3. Light and heat.



Pine resin can be used to make a lamp. Look for a stone with
depression, a can, a shell or anything that can be filled with resin. For a
wick, use some twisted cloth. Fill the depression with the resin, lay the wick
on top and ignite the wick. The wick material will ignite the resin which will
burn like a candle. Feed more resin to maintain the flame.



To use the pine resin as a heat source, get a metal
container and punch holes in its side. Place it over the ignited resin. The
metal will absorb the heat and conduct to the surrounding area. This will not
heat a large area but you get enough heat to warm hands and feet.



4. Make glue out of pine resin.



Heat the resin to liquid form. While the pine resin is
heating, crumble some charcoal from the fire to fine powder (or as fine as you
can make them). When the resin is ready, remove from heat and stir in the
powder charcoal – the amount of the charcoal powder should be about 1/3 of the
resin’s volume. Dip a stick repeatedly in the mixture to form a ball of pitch
on the end.  Store the glue like this until it is needed. Heat the
hardened glue until pliable.



You can form fishhooks with the glue, repair holes in water
containers, repair the soles of shoes, apply feathers to homemade arrows or
harden the ends of hunting spears to keep them from splintering, etc.



5. Start a fire with pine resin.



You can use pine resin to start a fire especially in damp
conditions. Look for some hardened pine resin and some pine sticks. You will
see streaks of resin when you split the pine sticks. Lay some dried pine
needles near the resin. When you ignite the resin, it will burn long enough to
dry the  pine needles and you can add small pieces of the pine sticks
which will burn even if somewhat damp because of the resin. Once you’ve got a
sizable flame going, you can start drying out other wood.

Pine Pitch for Fire Lighting

trees are
probably one of the three best trees in the wilderness for starting a fire.
The other two (each for different reasons) are cedar and birch trees.
Pine trees have great characteristics that make it useful in a wilderness
survival scenario.
One of
the useful qualities of pine trees is that the sap (also called pine pitch)
is flammable.  It burns very well and can be added to other natural tinder
like dried pine needles to make a very effective fire starter.
Some possible
uses of different parts of the Pine Tree:
1. Pine
needles can be boiled to make a tea, which can also be doubled as an antiseptic
wash for minor injuries.
2. The
inner cambium layer of the pine tree bark can be eaten.  Although
it doesn’t taste great raw.  (Neither does the tea, for that matter, but
it is high in Vitamin C).
3. The
wood grain of the pine tree is typically straight and easy to break down
for fire wood and kindling.
4. The pine
nuts in the pine cone can be eaten.
5. Low
hanging small dead inner branches can be used for kindling in a fire.
6. Larger
dead branches hold pine pitch in the 4 to 6 inches closest to the trunk
of the tree which can be used for starting fire.  
7. The
base of a large pine tree can be used as a partial shelter in a high
snow area winter situation.  They can also partially shelter you from
8. Old
dead pine tree stumps will have shards of un-rotted wood sticking up out
of the ground that are saturated with pine pitch.
9. Bark
from a large pine tree can be used as a platform for building fire or
other tasks in the wilderness.
10. Pine
Trees attract wildlife such as squirrels for hunting and trapping.
11. Pine
pitch can be melted and infused on to a cloth, wrapped around a green stick
and used as a torch.
12. The
smell of freshly crushed pine needles (rubbed in clothing) can act as a
scent masking agent to help reduce human scent while hunting.  Be careful,
this could be a bit messy…
13. Dried
pine needles can be used as a tinder and or kindling.
There are
probably tons more uses, but those are the ones I can think of right now.

If you
need a fire and have an ignition source (lighter, metal match, matches,
etc.) then pine pitch could help you get your fire going. Try it for

The Threat of Wild Dogs Post SHTF

I have seen with my own eyes packs of wild semi feral dogs
roaming around two very different European countries.

The first was on the island of Corfu where the tourist feeds
the pups of these dogs “they actually time their breeding to coincide with the
tourist season” and every open air restaurant had feral dogs under the tables
begging for food scraps, these dogs roam wild on the island in the winter
attacking sheep and goats.

The second time was in Italy on the Adriatic coast near the
town of Atessa where packs of wild dogs roamed industrial estates and the
outskirts of towns and villages.

This was of course pre-SHTF but imagine what would happen to
these dogs and how they would act post SHTF.

In any kind of a large-scale emergency, whether financial,
EMP or some something else that causes large scale disruptions, a lot of people
will turn their pets lose.  Now I know
that many of you will suggest that they should eat them and I am with you. 

However many of the animal loving liberals will turn their
pets lose because they won’t have the heart to kill them.  In addition if there are wide spread deaths
many animals will escape.

Now most animals don’t present too much of a problem, except
maybe around zoos or exotic animal farms, but dogs can easily go feral.  Feral dog packs are already a problem in
areas of the U.S. and Mexico.  Look at
the following from just a few news items I checked.

Mexico City killings are blamed on pack of wild dogs.  The pack of marauding wild dogs is blamed for
deaths of five people found with horrific flesh injuries.

St. LOUIS, Mo. – Ten years after a fourth-grade boy was attacked
and nearly eaten alive by wild dogs in north St. Louis, city leaders are
scrambling to make sure it doesn’t happen again.  Aldermanic President Lewis Reed is sounding
the alarm.

“I’ve witnessed packs of dogs, 10 and 15 dogs running
together, and all these dogs I’m talking about don’t have collars, they don’t
have tags, these are truly wild dogs,” he said.

Detroit, City of Strays
an epidemic of 50,000 abandoned dogs – In Detroit, packs of free-roaming
dogs have posed such a danger that a postal service spokesman said they
considered stopping mail delivery to some areas last year because carriers were
“constantly being bitten” or injured eluding vicious animals.

Maryland – Pack of
vicious wild dogs killing other dogs

Canada – Volunteers
struggle to reduce wild dog population plaguing native reserves

In appearance, most feral dogs are difficult to distinguish
from domestic dogs.  Like domestic dogs,
feral dogs come in a variety of shapes, sizes, colours, and even breeds. 

German shepherds, Doberman pinschers, and collies are breeds
that often become feral.  It is not just
pit bulls as most people think.

Feral dogs are usually secretive and wary of people.  They are active during dawn, dusk, and at
night much like other wild members of the canine family.  They often travel in packs and may have
rendezvous sites like wolves.  Travel
routes to and from the gathering or den sites may be well defined. 

Food scraps and other
evidence of concentrated activity may be observed at gathering sites.

A survey by the National Agricultural Statistics Service in
the USA in 1999 found that feral dogs were partly responsible for killing cows,
sheep, and goats worth about U.S. 37 million dollars.

Farms aren’t the only place where these animals may be
found.  Low-income, high-crime
neighbourhoods in cities like Los Angeles, St. Louis, New York, Santa Fe,
Pittsburgh, and Cleveland, are being overrun by tens of thousands of unwanted
dogs, says Randy Grim, founder of Stray Rescue in St. Louis, a non-profit
organization that saves street dogs.

We in the UK “A nation of pet lovers” have a very high
population of dogs, In April 2011 there were approximately 10.5 million owned
dogs in the UK and 39% of UK households own at least one dog.

Packs of feral dogs will be a danger to your family and
animals, in particular young children.
If they are hungry, they will stalk and hunt you. 

I strongly suggest that you have adequate fencing for
animals and the means to defend yourself and your property from packs of feral
dogs.  Methods of controlling feral dogs
include shooting, trapping, fencing and baiting.

Basic Wilderness Survival Skills
Fear – For anyone faced
with a wilderness emergency survival situation, fear is a normal reaction.
Unless an emergency situation has been anticipated, fear is generally
followed by panic then pain, cold, thirst, hunger, fatigue, boredom and
loneliness. It is extremely important to calmly assess the situation and not
allow these seven enemies to interfere with your survival.
Pain – Pain may often
be ignored in a panic situation. Remember to deal with injuries immediately
before they become even more serious.
Cold – Cold lowers the
ability to think, numbing the body and reducing the will to survive. Never
allow yourself to stop moving or to fall asleep unless adequately sheltered.
Thirst – Dehydration is a
common enemy in an emergency situation and must not be ignored. It can dull
your mind, causing you to overlook important survival information.
Hunger – Hunger is
dangerous but seldom deadly. It may reduce your ability to think logically
and increase your susceptibility to the effects of cold, pain and fear.
Fatigue – Fatigue is
unavoidable in any situation so it is best to keep in mind that it can and
will lower your mental ability. Remember that in an emergency situation this
is often the bodies way of escaping a difficult situation.
Boredom & Loneliness – These
enemies are quite often unanticipated and may lower the mind’s ability to
deal with the situation.
Building a fire is
the most important task when dealing with survival in the wilderness. Be sure
to build yours in a sandy or rocky area or near a supply of sand and water as
to avoid forest fires. The most common mistakes made by those attempting to
build a fire are: choosing poor tinder, failing to shield precious matches
from the wind and smothering the flames with too large pieces of fuel. The
four most important factors when starting a fire are spark – tinder – fuel –
1. Waterproof,
strike-anywhere matches are your best bet. Matches may be water-proofed by
dipping them in nail polish. Store your matches in a waterproof container.
2. A cigarette
lighter is also a good way to produce a spark, with or without fuel.
3. The flint and
steel method is one of the oldest and most reliable methods in fire starting.
Aim the sparks at a pile of dry tinder to produce a fire.
4. The electric
spark produced from a battery will ignite a gasoline dampened rag.
5. Remove half of
the powder from a bullet and pour it into the tinder. Next place a rag in the
cartridge case of the gun and fire. The rag should ignite and then may be
placed into the tinder.
6. Allow the sun’s
rays to pass through a magnifying glass onto the tinder.
Dry grass, paper or
cloth lint, gasoline-soaked rags and dry bark are all forms of tinder. Place
your tinder in a small pile resembling a tepee with the driest pieces at the
bottom. Use a fire starter or strip of pitch if it is available.
Before building
your shelter be sure that the surrounding area provides the materials needed
to build a good fire, a good water source and shelter from the wind. It is
important to keep in mind that smaller pieces of kindling such as, twigs,
bark, shavings and gasoline, are necessary when trying to ignite larger
pieces of fuel.
Gather fuel before
attempting to start your fire. Obviously dry wood burns better and wet or
pitchy wood will create more smoke. Dense, dry wood will burn slow and hot. A
well ventilated fire will burn best.
Wilderness shelters may include:
1. Natural shelters
such as caves and overhanging cliffs. When exploring a possible shelter tie a
piece of string to the outer mouth of the cave to ensure you will be able to
find your way out. Keep in mind that these caves may already be occupied. If
you do use a cave for shelter, build your fire near its mouth to prevent
animals from entering.
2. Enlarge the
natural pit under a fallen tree and line it with bark or tree boughs.
3. Near a rocky
coastal area, build a rock shelter in the shape of a U, covering the roof
with driftwood and a tarp or even seaweed for protection.4. A lean-to made
with poles or fallen trees and a covering of plastic, boughs, thick grasses
or bark is effective to shelter you from wind, rain and snow.
5. A wigwam may be
constructed using three long poles. Tie the tops of the poles together and
upright them in an appropriate spot. Cover the sides with a tarp, boughs,
raingear or other suitable materials. Build a fire in the centre of the
wigwam, making a draft channel in the wall and a small hole in the top to
allow smoke to escape.
6. If you find
yourself in open terrain, a snow cave will provide good shelter. Find a drift
and burrow a tunnel into the side for about 60 cm (24 in) then build your
chamber. The entrance of the tunnel should lead to the lowest level of you
chamber where the cooking and storage of equipment will be. A minimum of two
ventilating holes are necessary, preferably one in the roof and one in the
Clothing must
provide warmth and offer protection from the elements. Layers of light,
natural fibers are best. Hats are a must, as they offer protection from both
the heat and cold. Water proof outer layers are necessary.
Equipment must be
easily manageable and promote survival in any situation. Items to carry in
your pockets may include a fire starter, waterproof matches and/or lighter, a
pocket knife, goggles, compass, small first-aid kit and some sort of trail
Items for your
survival kit should be packed in a waterproof container that can double as a
cooking pot and water receptacle and be attached to your belt.
In addition to a
survival kit, a good, comfortable backpack is mandatory. Loads of about 18 kg
(40 lb.) are average. Items to include are; flashlight, extra jacket, socks
and mittens, a pocket saw, gas camp stove, first aid kit, emergency food, and
a tent and fly.
Useful items to
include on your trek are:
1. A map and
2. A large, bright
plastic bag will be useful as a shelter, signalling device or in lieu of
3. A flashlight
with extra batteries.
4. Extra water and
5. Extra clothing
such as raingear, a toque and gloves, a sweater and pants.
6. Sun protection
such as sunglasses, sunscreen, a hat and long sleeved clothing.
7. A sharp pocket
8. Waterproof
matches, a lighter and/or a flint.
9. Candles and fire
10. A first aid
11. A whistle,
flares, a tarp.
Before venturing
into the wilderness check weather forecasts and hazards.

How to Read a Compass

Navigation by way
of compass may seem daunting at first to a beginner, but this trepidation
shouldn’t stand in the way of learning to use one. In fact, once the basics
are down, a compass will be a valued friend in the back-country — one you can
always count on to help guide your steps.
This guide is meant
to be a general overview of the basics of using a compass, with or without a
map. There are only a few key things to keep in mind, and once you have
grasped these fundamentals, the realm of compass navigation will be open to
you forever.
Compass Basics
First of all, what
exactly does a compass do? In short, a compass is a fixed housing containing
a free-floating metal “needle” able to align itself to the Earth’s magnetic
field. One end of the needle will always point towards the north magnetic
An important fact
to mention here is that magnetic north is not the same as geographic north. A
map will make reference to geographic north, i.e. the North Pole, a fixed
point on the Earth’s surface, whereas magnetic north fluctuates in position
over time. This is known as magnetic declination. I’ll come back to this in a
In addition to the
floating needle, a compass may have a myriad of other features, but only a
few are really relevant to basic orienteering. The first, and most important,
is the rotating bezel on the face.
The bezel contains
the 360 degrees of a circle, or the azimuth. Another often-used term is
bearing. So the bezel allows the user to “dial-in” his or her desired
direction of travel simply by rotating the face.
Let’s say for
example that you know your home base is in a south-easterly direction, ~120
degrees of azimuth. If you wanted to make sure you travelled in that
direction, you would first orient yourself so that the red (north) end of the
compass needle is aligned with the N (0°) mark on the bezel.
Next, you would
rotate the bezel until the needle pointed to 120°. Finally, you would simply
rotate yourself so that the needle once again pointed to the N (0°) mark. And
voila, you now have your bearing.
Magnetic or Geographic?
There is one catch,
though. Remember what I said about magnetic north not being true or
geographic north? Well, the difference between the two is determined by your
location on the Earth’s surface, and it’s enough to really throw off your
bearing and put you into the nearest swamp.
Luckily, the bezel
holds the key once again. Once you know your magnetic declination, you simply
rotate the bezel according to that number. For instance, let’s pretend you
live in Seattle, and know your magnetic declination to be 16° 51′ E. In this
case, the difference is ~ +17° from true north, so we need to subtract that
from our current bearing by rotating the bezel to the right.
So with our compass
needle now pointing north again, our housing (and thus our direction of
travel) will be oriented to 343°. Confused? Not surprising.
But take heart, it
is much easier to understand once you have your compass in hand.
Finally, you might
be asking, “How do I choose the right compass for me?” While there are lots
of compass models on the market, the best ones will not be overwhelming with
features nor so bare bones that they lack even a rotating bezel.
My personal recommendation
is to go with a standard, liquid-filled orienteering compass such as that
made by Suunto or Brunton. Stay away from “button” compasses or those found
in the hilts of knives.
They are largely
inaccurate and will not help you in the long run. Once you grasp the basics
of using your standard compass, you can graduate to one with more advanced
features. That being said, as long as your compass has a rotating bezel and
can reliably point to magnetic north, you have everything you need to find
your way.

Lyme Disease

Lyme disease is a
bacterial infection that is spread to humans by infected ticks. Ticks are
small, spider shaped insects that feed on the blood of mammals including
The most common
symptom of Lyme disease is a red skin rash that looks similar to the bull’s
eye on a dartboard. However, if Lyme disease is left untreated, further
symptoms can follow, including:
A high temperature
(fever) 38C or over.
Muscle pain.
Joint pain and
symptoms, such as temporary paralysis of the facial muscles.
A person with Lyme disease
is not contagious because the infection can only be spread by the ticks.
Lyme disease is an
uncommon infection. The Health Protection Agency (HPA) estimates that there
are between 1,000 – 2,000 cases of Lyme disease in the UK each year.
The ticks that
cause Lyme disease are commonly found in woodland and heath land areas. This
is because these types of habitat have high numbers of tick-carrying animals,
such as deer and mice. Parts of the UK that are known to have a particularly
high population of ticks include:
 The New Forest in Hampshire.
The South Downs.
Parts of Wiltshire
and Berkshire.
Thetford forest in
The Lake District.
The “Yorkshire
The Scottish
Due to their
breeding patterns the tick population is at its highest during late spring
and early summer.
Ticks can also be
found in rural areas of many other countries including:
United States of
There is a widely
held misconception that the outlook for Lyme disease is poor, and that the
condition cannot be treated. However, this is not the case.
If Lyme disease is
diagnosed in its early stages, it can be treated with antibiotics, and the
outlook for the condition is excellent. Most people will make a full recovery
within a couple of days.
Even if more
serious symptoms develop, they can usually be cured with antibiotics,
although a longer course will be required.
A vaccination for
Lyme disease was introduced in 1998, but it has since been withdrawn by the
manufacturer due to controversies over alleged side effects.
The best way to
prevent Lyme disease is to take sensible precautions when you are in areas
that are known to have a high tick population, such as:
Wear a long sleeved
Wear long trousers
and tuck the legs into your socks.
Wear insect
Inspect your skin
for ticks, particularly at the end of the day, including your head, neck,
armpits, groin and waistband.

How To!!!

A car could sink when falling off a bridge
or simply when there is a flash flood. Once you’re the water starts pouring
into your vehicle, do the following:
Stay calm, don’t panic.
Unfasten your seat belt. (Don’t forget
Roll down your side window.
If it cannot be rolled down: break it with
a heavy object (flashlight …).
Don’t try to break the windshield, it’s
very hard to break.
Swim out and head to the surface.
Reminder: Don’t panic and forget your seat
belt on, don’t waste your time trying to save valuable possessions. SAVE
How to Survive a
House Fire
Statistically speaking, fires usually
happen between 8 pm to 8 am. So chances you will be asleep when that happens,
make sure you have smoke detectors in every room and that they’re actually
working. Follow these steps:
When you see the fire or smoke drop to the
floor and crawl down.
When you reach a door, feel if it’s hot
before touching it to avoid burning your hand.
If it’s hot, keep it closed, because it’s
protecting you from the smoke.
Try to get out of the window if living in
the lower floor. Or signal for help if otherwise.
If the door is not hot, open it and find
your exit from the house.
If your clothes catch on fire, stop where
you are. Don’t run. Quickly drop to the ground. Roll over and over. This will
put out the flames.
Call 999 or see if you can signal for help
out of the window with a white shirt or flash light.
Other tips are: prepare a wet blanket to
protect your body from burns. If there is too much smoke in the room, break
the windows to have fresh air in the room.
Plan and practice with your family before a
disaster hits.
Practice what to do with your kids when
there is a fire.
Decide a meeting place where the whole
family can meet (mailbox for example), so that if someone is not there, you
would know that person is still inside.
How to Survive a
Tornadoes are unpredictable and
destructive; they can wipe out a whole area in a matter of seconds. About
1000 tornadoes hit the U.S every year. Knowing how to save yourself depends
on where you are. Below is what to do in 3 scenarios:
If you are in a structure (e.g. residence,
small building, school, nursing home, hospital, factory, shopping centre,
high-rise building) go to a pre-designated shelter area such as a safe room,
basement, storm cellar, or the lowest building level. If there is no
basement, go to the center of an interior room on the lowest level (closet,
interior hallway) away from corners, windows, doors, and outside walls. Place
yourself with as many walls as possible between you and the outside. Get
under a sturdy table and use your arms to protect your head and neck. Do not
open windows.
If you’re in a vehicle, trailer, or mobile
home Get out immediately and go to the lowest floor of a sturdy, nearby
building or a storm shelter. Mobile homes, even if tied down, offer little
protection from tornadoes.
If you’re outside with no shelter then lie
flat in a nearby ditch or depression and cover your head with your hands. Be
aware of the potential for flooding.
Do not get under an overpass or bridge. You
are safer in a low, flat location.
Never try to outrun a tornado in urban or
congested areas in a car or truck. Instead, leave the vehicle immediately for
safe shelter.
Watch out for flying debris. Flying debris
from tornadoes causes most fatalities and injuries.
Listen to a portable radio (weather
channel), a key possession in a tornado, and wait for the official all clear.
How to remove
Ticks may carry diseases such as Lyme and
babesiosis. You should remove the tick from your skin as soon as possible.
But make sure you follow these steps.
The best way to remove a tick is to make it
release its bite by pulling it off gently, leaving the tick and its mouth
parts intact. So try the following:
Don’t touch the tick. Use blunt curved
tweezers or a thread.
Grasp the tick by placing the most part of
its body inside the tweezers.
Start pulling firmly enough to lift up the
Hold this tension for 3 to 4 minutes and
the tick will let go.
Do not squeeze the body of the tick because
its fluids may contain bacteria or tick-borne diseases.
Do not twist or jerk the tick while pulling
upwards because this may cause the mouth parts to detach and stay on your
People who are worried about Lyme disease
can place the tick in a small plastic bag and freeze, so that if they get
sick later they can take it for lab testing.
Wash your hands and the affected area with
soap and water
Watch for signs of such as Bull’s eye rash
(Lyme disease symptom).
Making Cordage from Natural Fibres
In these modern
days in our throwaway society, cordage, whether its string, cord or rope is
taken for granted. Not much thought is given to it. A piece of string is used
and when its job is done it will probably be discarded. When a piece of
string is needed again, a fresh piece is cut from the ball and so it goes on.
However, to produce
a length of cordage in the field from natural fibres can take a significant
amount of time. Especially if a long, thin strong length of cordage needs to
be produced. There are two main methods of producing cordage, twisting and
Normally twisting
is used to create an initial length of cordage. Then plaiting can be used
with several of these twisted lengths to produce stronger, larger diameter
cordage (cord or rope).
Lots of different
natural fibres can be used to produce cordage. For example nettles, inner
willow bark etc. Bear in mind that the cordage produced from natural fibres
such as these are not as strong as commercial cordage which is now available.
o prevent cracking
and breaking care should be taken not to bend natural cordage too sharply
when using it in lashings or tying knots. One solution is to moisten the
cordage to improve its flexibility but, one disadvantage of this is that
water, as well as softening the natural fibres causes them to swell
increasing the diameter of the cordage. This is fine until the cordage starts
to dry out then any lashings or knots you have tied will become loose.
The outer fibres of
the common nettle can be used to produce relatively strong thin cordage.
First of all you must remove the leaves. This can be done by running your
hand from the bottom to the top of the stem. Grasp the nettle firmly and you
should not get stung. If you are worried about getting stung you can do this
process wearing gloves.
Once all the leaves
and stings have been removed you can crush the stem with the butt of your
knife then run your thumb nail down the length of the nettle to open and
flatten the stem out? Now take the stem and bend it over a finger. The outer
fibres should now be able to be gently removed from the hard inner core. The
outer fibres should then be put somewhere to dry until needed.
Take one of the
nettle fibres and hold it tightly between finger and thumb at one end of the
fibre. Then twist the fibre from the other end, rolling it over and over
until it kinks, usually somewhere in the middle.
The fibre will now
be half the original length. It will be doubled at one end. Continue to hold
this end tightly between fingers and thumb while rolling the two tail ends
around one another. When one of the tail ends ‘runs out’ add a new fibre in
and continue twisting. Continue this process until your cordage reaches the
length you require, to finish tie an overhand knot to stop the cord
The roots of many
trees and plants can be used to produce cordage for example pine, alder and
birch. Luckily the best roots for cordage tend to be found near the surface
of the ground where they are thin and flexible. Using a digging stick or
spade gently dig down until a suitable root is found.
Then follow the
root along, exposing as much of its length as possible. This can sometimes be
tricky as roots tend to interlace and can sometimes be quite a complicated
puzzle. Don’t be lazy and try to pull on the root to remove it from the
ground as it’ll just snap. In general it’s best to remove the roots outer
bark but, it’s not always required. You can remove this bark by using a
A brake is a thin
stick which has a split at the end. You basically pull the root through the
split stick (brake) and this scrapes the bark off the root. Larger diameter
roots can be split in half or even quartered to produce the required diameter
Splitting also
gives the advantage of giving cordage with a flat edge, giving a lashing more
contact area and therefore greater strength. To split a root start the split
with your knife. Then pull the two halves apart to continue the split. If the
split starts to run off centre, bend the thicker half more (at a greater
angle to the split).
Pay particular
attention when approaching knots or bends with the split as these may have to
be cut with a knife to stop them from running off.
As I mentioned at
the beginning. We tend to use cordage without a thought.
The old saying
“Easy come, Easy go” springs to mind. However, being able to produce cordage
from natural fibres is an important skill which should not be overlooked.
It is time
consuming but a skill well worth learning. One thing is for sure, after
making a reasonable length of cordage from natural fibres you will certainly
have new found appreciation for a humble piece of string.

The Neutron Bomb

Some people felt at the time that its
relatively small initial blast and large fallout was ideal for use in densely
populated areas, like Europe. Other proponents argued that deployment of the
neutron warhead could be used as a bargaining chip against the Soviet SS-20
missile which was viewed as a threat to NATO forces in Europe.
Opponents of the weapon argued that the
neutron bomb made the idea of using nuclear weapons in war more conceivable.
Because the neutron bomb would devastate the whole of a target, military
planners might not be as hesitant to use the neutron bomb as they would a
standard fission bomb.
Neutron Bomb
Summer 1958- While conducting researching
on developing a large thermonuclear weapon, Sam Cohen introduces the idea of
removing the uranium casing from a hydrogen bomb to allow neutrons to travel
great distances and penetrate even heavily shielded armour and structures.
1961-The Kennedy administration decides
against the idea of developing a neutron bomb and introducing it into the US
nuclear arsenal because it may jeopardize the moratorium on nuclear testing
being observed by the US and Soviet Union.
1961-The Soviet Union breaks the moratorium
on nuclear testing allowing the US to proceed with developing the neutron
1962-The first neutron device is
successfully tested.
1970s-The Carter administration proposes
modernizing the US nuclear arsenal by installing neutron warheads on the
Lance missiles and artillery shells planned for deployment in Europe.
1977-West Germans realize their country
will likely be the battleground for use of the neutron bomb and begin hotly
debating whether or not the weapon should be allowed on their soil.
1978-Succumbing to international and
domestic pressure, President Carter decides to defer deployment of the
neutron bomb, conditional to Soviet restraint in military production and
force deployments.
1980-France announces that it has tested a
neutron device.
1981-President Reagan re-authorizes the
production of neutron warheads for the Lance missile and an 8-inch artillery
shell, but because of strong opposition in Europe, he orders that all neutron
weapons be stored in the US with the option to deploy overseas in the event
of war. The USSR announces that it too has tested neutron weapons, but has no
plans of deploying them.
1982-France begins production of the
neutron warhead.
1986-France announces it will abandon the
production of neutron warheads because of internal and external political
Definition of the
Neutron Bomb
WARHEAD, it is a specialized type of small thermonuclear weapon that produces
minimal blast and heat but which releases large amounts of lethal radiation.
The neutron bomb delivers blast and heat
effects that are confined to an area of only a few hundred yards in radius.
But within a somewhat larger area it throws off a massive wave of neutron and
gamma radiation, which can penetrate armour or several feet of earth.
This radiation is extremely destructive to
living tissue. Because of its short-range destructiveness and the absence of
long-range effect, the neutron bomb would be highly effective against tank
and infantry formations on the battlefield but would not endanger cities or
other population centres only a few miles away.
It can be carried in a Lance missile or
delivered by an 8-inch (200-millimetre) howitzer, or possibly by attack
aircraft. In strategic terms, the neutron bomb has a theoretical deterrent
effect: discouraging an armoured ground assault by arousing the fear of
neutron bomb counterattack.
The bomb would disable enemy tank crews in
minutes, and those exposed would die within days. U.S. production of the bomb
was postponed in 1978 and resumed in 1981.”
How to Make
Char cloth
Fire making is a basic survival skill that must be learnt
then practiced regularly or you could find yourself stuck in the wilderness
without a way to boil your water or cook your food.
In order to make a fire, it’s more than just making a spark
from a magnesium firesteel, fire piston, flint and steel, or a flame from a
lighter. You need that ignition source to easily catch on to something that’ll
burn long enough for the kindling to catch, which is supposed to burn long
enough for your fuel wood to burn. That something is called Tinder.
The components of a good tinder are:
  1. you
    have it with you or can find it when you need it
  2. it
    catches fire easily in whatever weather or environment you’re in
  3. it
    burns long enough to catch your kindling on fire
I have to say that having one of Bushcraft tools fire
pistons I recommend Char Cloth. Technically, char cloth is an addition to your
tinder stock.
So what is char cloth I hear you ask?
Char cloth is an organic material (like cotton) that has
been heated enough that all (most) of the gasses inside have left but has been
protected from burning itself up.

When something burns, it’s actually a chemical reaction with
oxygen or a similar gas. When something like wood or cotton burns, chemicals
like carbon monoxide, hydrogen and carbon dioxide are
released into the air.

If you heat up something like cotton to a certain point and
don’t let oxygen into the area for it to burn, the gasses will be released but
the material itself won’t combust. That’s essentially all you need to do to
make char cloth in theory, but let’s look at how you make it.
How do you make charred cloth?
The simplest prepper method of making char cloth is to take
something like pieces of cotton from a t-shirt or old jeans and put it into a
small tin, like an altoids tin or an air pellet tin. You can also use a tuna
tin, coffee tin etc. as long as you can seal it fairly well after you put the
material in it and it won’t burn itself up.
I wanted to make some char cloth just using stuff I had
lying around the house so instead of an altoids tin I used an old pellet tin I
had lying around.
You need the gasses to escape from the inside after they’re
released from the cotton, so you need to poke a small hole in the tin with something
like a nail. You don’t want it too big though, or oxygen will get in and your
fabric will catch fire.
I got my Gillie Kettle out and lit it and put the old pellet
tin on top then I cut a strip denim from some old jeans about as wide as the
tin is long, rolled it up and put it into the tin. The smoke was coming out of
the hole in the top of the tin, and if I was to put a flame to it, that smoke
would catch fire.
This is essentially a mini-gasifier. That gas is flammable
enough to be used in a generator or carb for an engine.
Then, you just cook the tin in the fire for a while until
you don’t see any more smoke coming out, and that’s it. Depending on how much
stuff you have, how big your tin is and how hot your fire is, it should take
anywhere from 15-45 minutes.
Obviously, the proof is in the pudding so I took out my
magnesium fire starter that I keep in my pocket as a part of my EDC kit, and it
lit after one spark.
That’s really all there is to it. You should experiment with
different types of fabrics and different temperatures and times to heat it up
but it’s not really all that hard. You don’t even need to use cloth. Almost any
organic material should work, such as wood or plant fibres. You just need to
get all the gasses out without burning it.
Char cloth vs other tinder?
Char cloth catches so easily that just one spark will
usually catch, so not only can you place it right under your tinder bundle,
things like a breeze or damp air shouldn’t be a problem. It will burn usually
for a few minutes too, giving it enough time to catch. Because it doesn’t
give off a flame though, char cloth isn’t really going to be able to catch
Other tinder like dry leaves, grass, cat tail fluff, etc.
burns pretty well but isn’t always easy to catch from a spark. Especially if
it’s damp out.
Putting them together though, makes a powerful combination.
How to use char cloth to start a fire.
Char cloth catches easily but it won’t burn hot enough to
catch twigs on fire unless they’re REALLY tiny.
You also probably won’t have a lot of char cloth in your
kit. It will, however, burn enough to catch other tinder on fire. By making a
tinder bundle out of dry material that burns quickly and then putting the char
cloth in side it, you make an easy-to-light pile of stuff known as a nest that
will burn hot enough to catch twigs.
Having a successful fire started is all about sticking to
the sequence of fire starting. The spark catches the char cloth. The char cloth
catches the rest of the tinder. The tinder then catches your kindling. The
kindling catches the fuel wood and you can then boil water or cook a meal.

Can We Catch Parasites from Foraged Foods?

Foraging for food in the wild is in. Let’s be honest; it’s
never really been out. Nothing tastes more exotic than a tender spring
fiddlehead cut by the river and steamed right away. Who wouldn’t reach for a
plump ripe blackberry at the edge of the trail, or a low-hanging apple in the
I suppose you could say that recent interest in edible wild
plants and wild meat has, however, made foraging fashionable.
Is foraging safe? Articles about foraging often focus on
identification of wild plants, when to pick them, and what species to avoid.
It’s true that whether or not a mushroom or green is poisonous is of more
immediate concern than whether it might transmit a parasitic disease, but
organisms like parasites rank high in food safety issues too.
So can We Catch
Parasites From Foraged Foods?
Think back to the days before plant and animal
domestication; our distant forebears were hunter-gatherers. They foraged for
everything, and this was how they acquired most of their parasites (those that
they weren’t sharing directly person to person, such as lice).
Picking up parasites from contact with soil, drinking water,
and the wild foods that they ate was the norm. Make no mistake, those parasites
haven’t gone away; so far as I know science does not record any instance of a
parasite infectious to humans going extinct.
If anything, we have made things worse. Domesticating crops
and animals has given a lot of parasites unprecedented opportunities, but dense
human populations, large numbers of domestic animals, and our environmental
impact have changed things in the wild as well. For example:
All surface waters, everywhere, should now be considered
contaminated by intestinal protozoa of humans and cattle.
Human communities in North America support unusually high
populations of raccoons, carriers of a deadly roundworm.
Roaming and feral house cats have contaminated soils
worldwide with the protozoan Toxoplasma gondii.
Migrating humans have spread lots of parasites to places
where they were formerly not found.
Where droppings from grazing animals wash into streams,
liver fluke larvae infest watercress.
Foraged Food and the
Risk of Parasitic Diseases
While studies of the risk of parasitic disease faced by
foragers as a group may be lacking, mountains of literature document the risks
of eating and drinking, and even walking, in the wild.
The risk you face while foraging for wild food depends a lot
on what you’re looking for, and where you’re looking for it. Eating wild
animals can be the source of diseases such as trichinosis, toxoplasmosis, and
intestinal flukes and tapeworms.
Plants may be contaminated with human or animal faeces, or
they may harbour larval forms of parasites. In some places, picking up a
zoonosis – a disease of animals – is the major worry; in others, parasites of
humans are more common.
In tropical developing countries, sanitation is often poor
and faecal contamination of the environment intense, let’s be honest outside
toilets are merely one of the places where we accidentally sow the seeds of
wild plants that we eat.
These outside toilets
are also good places to pick up parasitic infections; forage there at your
In industrialized countries, wild plants are relatively safe
as long as they are not contaminated with animal droppings (although, here too,
aquatic plants such as watercress may transmit liver fluke) as I have
Pick with clean hands, leave anything questionable, and wash
thoroughly. If you want to eat anything raw, wash it with running potable
Thorough cooking will kill just about everything, but be
careful to clean surfaces that have come in contact with the uncooked food.
Wild animals can carry nasty parasites in both meat and faeces so, again, cook
well and clean thoroughly (and don’t feed raw trimmings to the family dog).
Foraging for
No discussion of foraging and parasites is complete without
noting that, in many cultures, people deliberately forage for parasites.
Some fish, and shellfish such as oysters, are particularly
tasty when infested with certain parasites; pea crabs, parasites of oysters are
eaten as gourmet foods in North America. Robin Overstreet describes tasty
caterpillars, nut-like botfly and warble fly larvae, fried “sweet meat” (liver
flukes) from deer, and both fish and mammal tapeworms eaten raw, among other
Thus, in the true spirit of foraging in the wild, when we
come across a parasite, the first question is “will it hurt me?” and the second
is “can I eat it?”

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