This Weeks Show 7th April 2017
This week I begin with the Blizzard Survival 20% discount offer, then the Luvele Dehydrator review, What is a BOV, and Do I Need One? My Bug-Out Belt, The Wilderness Gathering, A Tough Question, The Bug Out Survival Show 2017, When The Bug Out Bag Runs Out – What To Do After 72 Hours? Being Prepared, Could you live the Prepper Lifestyle? Organizing your every Day Carry, What to do when you bring the bacon home? Fishing to Survive, Out and About.
Welcome to the UK’s Premier Preppers and Survivalist Radio Show, I’m you host Tom Linden.
Thank you for listening and joining me again this week. If you are new to my show welcome to you too, I try to mix subjects on prepping and survival as pre SHTF we prepare, we are preppers, but post SHTF we become survivors.
Blizzard Survival 20% Discount Offer
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The Luvele Dehydrator Review
The model I reviewed is the Luvele Flow Food Dehydrator, 250w, with 5 trays costing £42,95.
Dehydration is the process, where 90% of the original moisture in meat, fruits, and vegetables are removed so that the food stays intact for at least a month without any refrigeration.
In the past food was dried under the sun by cutting it into thin slices. However, nowadays with the advancement of technology, These devices which are available in the market and can help to simplify the process of dehydration.
Dehydration’s most important benefits include:
No chemicals and preservatives.
No colors, flavors or additives.
The taste is concentrated as it dehydrates well. You get the natural taste, which tastes good.
The size of shrinks to half of its size and thus can be stored easily In the freezer for months.
All the nutrition like vitamins and minerals are preserved due to dehydration.
It also allows you to save money by purchasing a large qantity at the same time.
As a prepper who would not like to dehydrate food so that it can last for an extended period of time?
As a non-prepper who would not like to dehydrate food so that it can last for an extended period of time?
It makes sense, it makes food last longer and it tastes fantastic.
So far, I’ve used the dehydrator to make a couple of batches of each of: Apple chips (thin apple slices) Beef jerky I made my own marinade. Bacon bits, bought from local shop as (bacon pieces and cut thinly by me)
Here’s a tip from the internet, Slice your meat while it’s slightly frozen. That way you can make thin slices (about a 1/4 inch thick) without cutting off your finger, or worse, swearing.
Here is the recipe I used for my first ever dehydrator beef jerky.
200ml soy sauce
2 tsp salt
2 tsp garlic granules
2 tbsp ketchup
1 tsp pepper (if u like use chilli)
thinly sliced beef
Simply, Mix all the ingredients in a big bowl. Put the meat inside and let it stand overnight.
Then place it in the dehydrator making sure each piece is not touching another.
The fruit I simply slice thinly and place again in the dehydrator.
So what do I think, well, the taste is decided by me, the amount produced is never enough for me as I love it and will eat it until all is gone.
As a dry survival food it is the best, and if added to main meals it simply uplifts them into another food sensation.
Look dea listener just buy one and see for yourself.
What is a BOV, and Do I Need One?
Firstly this is for Paul who texted in last week wanting to know a bit about BOV’s.
A BOV or Bug Out Vehicle is some form of transport that will take you away from your current location in a time of crisis or distress. Almost anything that will move can be considered a potential BOV candidate.
That includes motor vehicles, animals, human powered devices or anything that can carry or tow some kind of load.
The next question is “do I need one?”
The simple answer is yes, it is very likely that you will need something to move you and your stuff around at one time or another. Even if you are well set up in a great location, there may come a time you will need to move.
I can’t elaborate on what the circumstances may be to make you move, but I can make some suggestions that will help you decide what you may require when that time comes.
Firstly, how many, how far, how much, how often? This is where you start to question what you need to move and how far you need to move it. If it is just one person, and they have a small bag of things, then the demands are not great.
However, if it is your whole family, and everything goes with you including the kitchen sink, then you will need something more substantial.
So, how many people are included in the group that are willing and able to move from your established location? Take into consideration that if your group is large, some might not wish to go even if it is against their better judgment.
Some of the group may have special requirements that will take up more space, things that cannot be left behind like medical equipment or wheelchairs.
Also consider that you may even have extra people to move around. You never know what might happen, and if you can make provision for these possibilities, within reason, more power to you.
Is your new location across the road, across the city, across the county, across the country, maybe even across the world! You will need to identify the location you wish to get to, and what might be required to get there.
That includes consumables, possible repairs and any chance you might have to adjust your course. Make allowances in your plan to get there via the ‘scenic route’.
This is what you plan to take with you if you do have to move. If you are in a set location with good resources and a chance of living well, then your absence may be short, until you can return.
In that case, short term items are of prime consideration, with a few longer term items thrown in just in case.
If you plan to bug out, and stay bugged out, then you will have to take a lot of gear with you. You must make plans to take all that gear with you safely and efficiently.
You may have to leave some of it behind, or hide it until the time is right to retrieve it. You may have to hide some of your gear beforehand to lessen the burden later on. This must all be considered and factored into your plan.
Do you plan to move once, a few times or be continually on the move? If it is just once, think about where that one move is going to, and will you have to move again?
If the answer is yes, then your plans for the one move have already failed. Also, if you plan to continually move, will you be able to stay for an extended period in one spot if the circumstance permit?
You must be willing to be flexible in these plans, even if you have no thoughts of going anywhere, it is wise to be prepared ahead of time if the unthinkable occurs and you do have to move.
Different styles of travel require different modes of transport, and the transport you select must be able to follow those plans, or you aren’t going anywhere!
In the end, if you plan to survive for a long time, you will very likely have to move around a little no matter how well prepared you are, as even the best-laid plans sometimes fail.
Whichever way you decide to go, a good reliable BOV should always be placed high on the list of needs, even if it is just as an emergency.
MY BUG OUT BELT
The colours I have chosen are designed to allow my belt to blend into the background in the outdoors environment and at the same time not stand out in a rural environment either.
My belt is the most compact adventure survival belt on the market.
High tension outdoor Pro-cord, a type of advanced para-cord (paracord ), can be used for a multitude of Bushcraft, Survival, EDC & First-aid situations in multiple environments.
The applications for its use are endless… Wherever you go, the AlpenLITE Belt goes with you and can be immediately deployed.
It fits like a normal belt only slightly thicker but unnoticeable while wearing. It is hands free and always there when you need it, from morning till night, the AlpenGuide Belt System is there waiting to assist you.
My Belt really is the most compact rescue adventure belt in the world!
You can order yours at http://www.alpenlore.com/
The Wilderness Gathering
If you’ve never been to the Gathering before and you love nature and the outdoors, then this is the family show for you – Wilderness Gathering, a unique Bushcraft event, is the longest running and still the original festival of bushcraft, survival and primitive living skills.
The Gathering has become a social event and brings together families and friends, all those interested in Bushcraft and Wilderness living skills to enjoy a weekend of knowledge sharing in a relaxed and family friendly atmosphere
Not only is the Gathering the place you to come to – to learn new skills, brush up on your old ones and meet some of the best bushcraft experts in the country but it has also become, over the past fifteen years, the place you come to – to gather and socialise round the campfire with friends, old and new.
The Coyote Clubs were introduced in 2005 and host a comprehensive range of events and activities specifically tailored for children from 5 to 15 year old.
The Masterclasses were introduced in 2005 and are your opportunity to study your favourite Bushcraft subject in depth with a leading Bushcraft instructors.
Where is it?
Located on a South Wiltshire farm with lakes and 30 acres of old oak woodlands. You get access to woodlands and fields to erect whatever shelter you want.
Add to this great food, local cider, mead, evening entertainment. great people and it’s now over 5 days it has to time to get booked http://www.wildernessgathering.co.uk/tickets.html
A Tough Question
My wife asked me yesterday, what I plan to do with family members who don’t prep, in the event of an actual SHTF emergency.
My brothers and sister and their families are some of those non-preppers, even though they know all about my views on that subject. On a side note, does it tarnish my prepper credibility when I can’t even convince my own siblings to prep?
I think that there are two questions in my Wife’s question, firstly will I help them if the SHTF? how far do I plan on helping, in terms of number of people/days? And if at all, I am going to help them in the first place.
These are questions I feel that every prepper must ask themselves when they start prepping, and it probably needs to be re-asked every few years or so as situations change.
I figure the answer to the first question will depend on the type of the emergency.
If it’s a small local emergency, like a house fire, flood or say the loss of their roof in high winds then yes, I am of course going to help them.
I can offer them a place to stay. I know my food preps would feed the family for some time.
What about a major SHTF event?
No one is perfect, in fact we all have weak points and perhaps illness’s to. What they may not have in health, they could make up for with experience, knowledge and skills.
Bringing extra adults (who you know) into my group would help greatly as there would be even more people to forage food and fire wood etc. and also allow for some sort of guard rota to be set up.
Remember if there are long standing fractions between you and the proposed incomers then stop, think, and re-think, can you handle that level of friction and argument? Do you need it?
Perhaps joining up is not going to be good for you, perhaps all you can offer is some of your prepps as you decide to not let them in.
Before any of this happens and you are faced with a decision of the heart, why not plan for what you would do IF this situation arose in the first place.
Work out, (knowing your family members etc.) how much extra food and water etc. You would need if they joined your group.
How long that food and water would last and where they all would sleep. As preppers we usually only prep for our immediate family so in this case the numbers change and we must take this into account.
Perhaps the actual question is, would I help in the first place, are my family behind any decision I make? can I afford to provide exactly the same quality of prepps for my extended family as I do for my immediate family?
If I and my family agree to help then should my extended family members help me financially in some way as it is they who will benefit should SHTF
My sister and her family live near Birmingham 130 miles away, one brother and his family live down south 135 miles away and the other and his family live about 15 miles away.
Two are too far away to make it here if the SHTF, which means I don’t really only have one to prep for. And on one level, it is not good because I love them dearly, and want them to make it too.
I think that it might help me and my conscience if I inform my brothers and sister that I cannot be there from them all and perhaps include information on what to do to start prepping for themselves in the future and explain that not to do so is very serious indeed, in fact I would go so far as to say it would be like planning to not survive.
In conclusion I would finish by telling them that I have planned for me and my immediate families’ survival and ask them not to rely on knocking on my door.
As I have said many times before, this question is one of the toughest you will have to ask and now is the time to ask it.
Gather your immediate family together and discuss it and come up with your own answer then act on it.
The Bug Out Survival Show 2017
Survival learning for all of your family 29th April to 01st May 2017
The B.O.S.S. is run by Ian Coulthard . Ian says, I am a Prepper Survivalist and I run a annual survival event weekend for any one who wants to come along and learn new skills and idea from experienced Survivalist’s, Bushcrafter’s and Prepper’s or share skills they already know with others. The B.O.S.S is a weekend for all the family to come and learn new survival skills in different areas of survival.
Prepping, Bushcraft and survival are in ways different stiles of learning how to stay alive in different situations. Even though they are of different styles of survival they do tend to blend in together with just one goal and the end result being able to use the knowledge and skills you have to stay alive.
The B.O.S.S is held on the first bank holiday weekend of every May and is a great opportunity for people to come along and learn new skills in all three styles of survival while meeting like minded people and making new friends with people of a similar interest.
Check out his FB page
Check out his website
When The Bug Out Bag Runs Out – What To Do After 72 Hours?
So you’ve had to abandon your home or BOL (or was not at it when the fan blades turned brown) and now you’re on the last day of your bug out bag, what now?
The first thing you should do is STOP and take a minute to reflect.
Check through your bag and see what’s still useful and what’s low or gone.
For the most part everything inside your bag will last for weeks or even months if it has to. Your fire starter should still be in good shape, your emergency blankets are ok, you still have a tent….but what about your food and water? AAH yes!
These are the real dangers.
You still have heat, shelter, and light but without food and water, especially water, you will die all warm and toasty.
Without food you’ll begin to feel hungry and run down in a day or two but you’re still ok for about another three weeks.
Assuming you have a destination you’re trying to reach where you can resupply you won’t starve if you make it there in time.
Without water however you’re in much worse shape. You have 2-3 days before your body shuts down and you eventually die on about the 4th day.
I have heard stores of people living 5 days, and even 7 without water but the average and the rule of thumb is 3 days.
Examine your surroundings and weight your options.
If your goal is to get where ever you’re going and you know for sure that you can reach it in 1-2 days, then start marching.
Don’t stop except to rest at night. Try to conserve all the water you can by not sweating.
If you don’t have a place to go or you’re more than 2-3 days out for a BOL, then you need to start looking for water.
If you’re in the wilderness look and listen for signs of water and head in that direction.
Signs can be green spots of vegetation in the distance (you may have to do for it), naturally occurring valleys between hills, or something as obvious as a creek bed.
If your survival scenario puts you in an arid environment such as a desert you should start planning now for your water, not after the shtf.
Have a plan and a place to go and carry enough water to get you there otherwise you will surely die. If possible drive the area now while you can think and plan things out.
It may be possible to cache some extra supplies in a hidden spot along your path, but you have to do this beforehand.
If you’re in an urban environment (which most will be) remember that there is probably water all around you, although it may not be drinkable.
It would be hard to imagine a house without at least one can of pop or a bottle of water somewhere inside. Hopefully you will find someone who can spare a bit.
Spigots on houses (beware the owners), ditches, man-made lakes, and swimming pools are all great sources.
If all hell has truly broke loose then take refuge inside of an abandoned house and look for water in water heaters, the BACK of toilets (not the bowl), and sink traps.
They will all hold some water. Just remember that this water will more than likely be contaminated so filter and boil it first.
Once your water is restocked either hunker down and build a temp base camp until you can locate food, or keep moving to your BOL.
If you’re in luck your scenario may be over by then and you can begin going back to a normal life.
If not I hope you are learning self-sufficient skills now as well as basic long term survival.
A popular misconception about being prepared is that you are preparing for a total, catastrophic meltdown that throws us all back to the stoneage.
One minute we’re living, the next we’re running around in chest rigs and getting into fire fights with those who would take what we have.
A SHTF event can be anything from an aggravating annoyance to what I have just described .
You can move or leave if it’s a localized event so it’s not SHTF
There are any number of scenarios where this simply isn’t true.
Medical issues, family responsibilities, jobs, resources, quickness of weather events, etc can all conspire to prevent you from dashing off to safety.
And even if you could, I can’t think of a worse case of the poop hitting the ventilation than having my home destroyed or a family member killed.
Minor things like flat tires are so easy to deal with that they aren’t SHTF events
Really? Your car gets a flat in a coned off work area on the motorway, it’s hanging out into a lane of traffic and the flat tire is on the traffic side.
As those cars whiz by your head please explain to the class how you aren’t in a bad situation.
Take it a step further. Now it’s your wife or daughter. When they call you on the phone in hysterics just tell them to suck it up and how “minor” the situation is.
Let me know how it turns out.
You break your leg. Not a SHTF event right? What if you just started a small cleaning business? You have three contracts at different apartment complexes and are a one-man operation.
Now you can’t work, can’t bill and can’t make money. Oh yea, your apartments will likely replace you with someone else.
Call me crazy, but something like that seems pretty bad no?
Because a situation is minor for you doesn’t mean it will be minor for all in your care.
Furthermore, any number of circumstances can ambush you to turn a minor event into a full blown catastrophe.
If there aren’t zombies it’s not SHTF
How old are you? Forget the zombies for a minute.
You go out to dinner with the family. You round the corner on the way home to find your house has burnt to the ground.
A chemical truck spills and releases toxic gas into the air. You have to leave and leave right now.
You have just enough time to grab your family but have to leave your dog standing on the front porch.
A major blizzard snows in your elderly parents house. Their power goes out and you’re dad needs his insulin to survive.
There is no way for him to leave, and very little chance of someone getting to him.
You move into a dream home for which you have saved your entire life. Six months later an earthquake damages it beyond repair.
You then find out your cut-rate insurance doesn’t cover the damages and you don’t have the money to fix your house.
You are on the way to take your oldest son to college. As you pull out of the driveway the phone rings. It’s your boss and you’ve just been fired.
Now sure, those are fabricated situations. But you can’t deny that in each one of them some level of crap has solidly hit the fan.
If I prepare for Mad-Max I’m prepared for all of the smaller things that could happen
People who focus on Mad-Max also tend to focus a lot on MRE’s and guns.
They also tend to overlook little things like tire repair kits, quality footware, cooking equipment, how they will take care of bodily waste etc etc.
While you are planning for your trip to live in the woods, did you remember to buy rock salt so when your driveway is a sheet of ice you can get out?
You know what else they tend to overlook?
Training. Yea. Kinda important to know how to do stuff, not just have the best gear out there.
It’s just too easy to get wrapped up in the fantasy land of becoming a wandering one-man army in your brand new Multicam kit and your 1000 yard rifle when all you think about is SHTF.
Trust me, it will cause you to overlook a simple preparation along the way.
Could you live the Prepper Lifestyle?
Living a prepper lifestyle is not only good for preparing for the future, but it’s a great way to live a less stressful life. Many people get tired of the rat race and long for something more calming.
A few give up their suburban lives and head for remote locations. That’s not what being a prepper is about.
Being a prepper is not about pulling yourself away from society and living like a hermit.
It’s simply living a life that doesn’t rely on the others to see you through a short term or long term disaster. While being a prepper is a great way to live, it’s really not for everyone.
So how can you tell who’s a good fit and who will absolutely hate living the life of a prepper? First, living the prepper lifestyle takes a complete commitment. The life is not for you if you think you want to dabble in it and see how it goes.
You’re either into it, or you’re not. If you’re ready to give up the way you’ve been living until now, and you’re ready to break free of the capitalistic mentality taught by society, then the lifestyle is for you.
If you know that you’re ready to walk away from being dependent on others for your needs, then this is for you. You have to believe that what you’re gaining is a better life for yourself and your family.
If you know that you’re ready to get organized and are committed to building your short term and long term list of goods and supplies, then the prepper lifestyle is something you’d find to be a good fit.
Being ready to become totally self-sufficient is a good clue that you’re ready for a life change. If you’re ready to learn about self-protection and first aid and how to take care of yourself and your family through anything, then you’re ready.
Being a prepper is not about living to the extreme the way the wacky survivalists you see portrayed on television live. It means you accept that there are things outside your control that could impact your life greatly, such as disasters, government collapse, etc. – and you want to be ready for whatever comes.
That’s when you know you’re ready for the prepper lifestyle. But not everyone who thinks they are, actually is ready.
If you’re in a relationship and your partner is dead-set against it, hates it, wants no part of it, you’re not ready if you don’t want to risk ruining the relationship.
You’re not ready if there are certain things in your life that you feel you absolutely can’t give up – such as a daily trip to the local pub or that expensive cup of coffee.
You’re not ready and the lifestyle is not for you if you set aside money for supplies but then spend it on going out to eat or shopping for a new pair of shoes or the latest video game.
You’re not ready if you have a deep attachment to the conveniences of life and rely too heavily on technology. You can’t imagine your life without modern technology is a sign you’re not ready.
If you have an unwillingness to learn how to prepare for the future or aren’t interested in sustainable living, then you’re not ready for the prepper lifestyle.
But most people can I think see a day when the worst case scenario happens, and if it happens to you, you’ll have to deal with it – ready or not.
Organizing your every Day Carry
Having a proper every day carry (EDC) setup is one of the most important things you can do to be prepared, well, every day.
While you can get separated from your bug out bag and might not be able to get home quickly, your everyday carry is always on you to help you survive and get things done.
I have covered some basics on the best every day carry setup before, but that’s really only useful if you’re starting from scratch.
If you just want to fine-tune your EDC however, there isn’t a lot out there to help. Lucky for you, I have compiled a list of five ways to fine-tune your EDC setup so it’s more useful and always at hand.
When starting out with every day carry items, it’s common to start with things that go in your pockets. This is great until you run out of room and your EDC makes you uncomfortable.
Once you’ve got some EDC experience, try moving to other locations on your body for keeping items. The most common upgrade is moving to your belt.
By keeping your knife or multi-tool on your belt along with other small items, you can free up space in your pockets while keeping everything you need on you.
You don’t have to go crazy here and have a belt that would rival an SAS Trooper, but simply keeping your knife, fire starter, and multi tool on your belt can give you a lot more space than you had before.
Moving past your belt, think about your trousers and shirts with additional pockets that can hold items, too.
By spreading your EDC out over your entire body, you ease the burden and make it far more comfortable.
Weight vs. Usefulness
If you’ve had an EDC setup for some time now you probably realize that not everything that you think is vitally important really is. It’s easy to go overboard and fill your pockets with things you MIGHT use at some point.
If you’re feeling weighed down by your EDC it might be time to take inventory of what you’re carrying and see if the weight of each item is really worth it.
For example, you might carry a small water filter straw with you in a cargo pocket, but you could lighten the load by using a small pill container with some water purification tablets in it.
Another weight-saving idea is the use of a small LED light instead of a standard torch/flashlight.
While the torch/flashlight is better, the keychain light can free up space for other more important items.
If you only follow one tip in this list, make it this one. KISS stands for Keep It Simple, Stupid. Don’t overthink your EDC setup by trying to plan for every possible scenario. Your EDC is meant to give you a leg up on everyone else, not to be a mini bug out bag.
Keep things simple and don’t stress out about it. Keep the essentials like a source of fire, a knife, a multi-tool, watch, and a weapon if you’re able to.
Beyond this just include items that make you feel safe and comfortable without trying to plan out scenarios. Trust me, even the most basic EDC setup is far more than the average person has.
Less is Sometimes More
Having an elaborate every day carry setup is great, until it’s so elaborate that you stop using it. The idea of an EDC is to have it with you every day.
If it takes 15 minutes to load yourself up chances are you’ll leave the house from time to time without it, and that’s not good at all.
It’s often better to have less items with you that you carry all the time than a lot of items that you only carry every now and then.
Think about what you need and ask yourself what would happen if the SHTF and you didn’t have the item in question? Would it make a difference? If not, ditch it and free that space up for something else.
The less items you have the less chance you have at forgetting something or losing something, and that means the pieces you do use are more valuable and overall better.
Trial and Error
Finally, don’t be afraid to change things. I have talked about changing your EDC for colder weather, but you can make changes to it every day if that suits you.
Try items out and if they don’t work, ditch them and find something new. Don’t put up with pieces in your EDC that you’re not in love with.
These are things you have with you 24/7, so you better love them or else you’ll hate carrying them.
Try a few setups out to see how they work and if you like them or not. Try your knife in a front pocket, back pocket, belt…try it all.
You won’t know what you really like unless you try a few different ways.
What to do when you bring the bacon home?
As good as mass-produced bacon is, curing and smoking your own at home kicks things up to a whole new level.
Once you master the technique, the flavour options are endless. Like your bacon with a kick? Bump up the red or chilli powder.
Like it sweeter? Try extra honey, brown sugar, real maple syrup or molasses or treacle in your cure.
While the curing process takes some time, the recipe itself is a simple one. Any smoker will work, but electric models make it easier to maintain the necessary low smoking temperatures needed to get the bacon just right. Wood choices can be as varied as you want them to be, but hickory and apple are the two most popular.
Curing bacon at home is so simple that the hardest part of the whole process can be procuring the pork belly itself.
Bacon made from wild pigs is a bit leaner than its store bought cousin, but it tastes pretty good.
6-8 hours on the smoker
A whole pork belly from the butcher shop normally runs around 10-12 pounds. A belly from an adult wild pig around 4-6. The following recipe is enough cure for 5-6 pounds, if you buy a whole pork belly, just separate it into two, more or less equal, pieces.
5 pound piece of pork belly, skin on or off, your choice
1.5 teaspoons pink salt (cure also known as Prague Powder number one), available on the internet at around £4 for 250g)
1/2 cup Maldon salt
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup sorghum molasses, if you can’t find that then use molasses or treacle
1 Tablespoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 gallon Ziplock bag
Begin by mixing all dry ingredients into a small bowl. Rub the cure into the exposed surfaces of the pork. Really work it in, make sure the belly is well coated with the cure.
Place the pork into a two gallon Ziplock bag and pour sorghum over the top of the meat (honey works well too) and seal the bag. Place the belly flat into a pyrex dish (the bag will leak a little, they always do) and put it in the fridge. Flip the pork once per day for 7 to 10 days.
I often get asked, “How do I know when it is finished curing?” The answer is, when it tastes right to you. After day seven or eight, open the bag and slice a tiny sliver from one side.
Rinse it well under cold water and fry it like you would bacon. If you like the flavour, it is finished. If you would like the salt and spice to be a bit stronger, let it soak another day or two. Remember that the outer surface is always quite a bit saltier than the inner slices will be.
Now that the bacon is fully cured, remove it from the bag and rinse thoroughly under running water. The next step is to let the bacon dry completely to form a sticky pellicle.
I prefer to do this by placing the bacon on a wire cooling rack and running a low speed fan over it for six to eight hours.
Your bacon is now ready for the smoker. A good remote meat thermometer comes in handy at this point.
I like to start my smoker at 175 degrees. Maintain this temperature for 3-4 hours then bump it up to 200 degrees to finish.
You are looking for an internal temperature of 150 degrees on the pork belly. Once you reach this point, the bacon is finished. Remove from the smoker and let the bacon cool completely before slicing.
I like to let mine come to room temperature, then place it into the freezer for an hour or two. The freezer helps to firm the bacon and makes slicing easier.
The fastest way to slice bacon is on a deli style meat slicer. A good sharp knife works too. Cured bacon will keep up to a year when vacuum sealed and kept in the freezer.
Use your homemade bacon just like you would bacon you buy from the supermarket. It makes a fine breakfast, wraps nicely around a pigeon breast or chunk of deer or steak, and seasons a pot of campfire baked beans like nothing else. After you get the basic recipe down, try flavours to make your own perfect blend.
Fishing to Survive
In a survival situation, once you have found shelter, built a fire and collected water, your next task will be to find food resources.
And whilst it is perfectly possible to exist without food for a few weeks and live off edible wild plants and berries, you’ll no doubt be glad of a hearty meal.
Therefore, it’s very useful to learn some fishing skills and here are some tips; assuming that you have no fishing gear with you.
If you’re near water, the first thing you must do if you’re looking to catch fish is to spend a bit of time observing how the fish behave each day.
Like you, they’ll also be looking for their next meal, so you’ll need to establish their habits – when they’re active, where in the water they head for etc.
An additional tip, however, is to consider the temperature if you’re not sure where to look. In hot weather where the water is low, you’ll probably find them in deeper shaded water and when it’s cooler, you’ll find them in shallower areas where the sun warms the water up.
Some type of cord should always form part of your survival kit anyway and if you haven’t included a proper fishing hook too, you can always improvise and craft one out of a piece of bone, thorn, wood or a safety pin works just as well.
For bait, it’s useful to try to gain an idea of what the fish in the area are eating. Insects, a piece of bread, some raw meat, if you can find any, or worms are all good sources of bait.
Survival fishing isn’t an exact science though.
The more hooks you have in the water and your willingness to be patient and to experiment are going to be your biggest allies. Bad weather approaching is always a good time to go fishing as well as just after dawn and just before dusk.
If you are handy using your knife to carve out a piece of wood, making a spear to fish with in shallow water is another alternative but if you see fish swimming around in shallow water, it’s a useful skill to learn even though it takes an extreme amount of skill, quick reactions and patience.
A forked spear which can trap the fish between its prongs works best.
As for a net, you can fashion one out of using some kind of shirt or T-shirt tied onto a Y shaped branch.
Only your imagination can limit you to the kinds of fish traps you can engineer.
One of the simplest methods is to use the effects of the tide.
On a beach or area with tidal waters, build a circle of rocks and use small pebbles to plug any gaps.
When the tide comes in, it will bring small fish in with it.
Simply return to the rock circle later and see what you’ve caught.
Most fish found in freshwater are edible although some will taste better than others.
However, it’s important to remember that it’s not a matter of taste but a matter of survival. Once caught, cut the throat and gut it by slitting it from its anal passage to its throat removing the offal as you go.
Remove the head, tail and fins then smoke, grill or boil it.
Out and About
Here are three survival tips that are free, and won’t cost you anything.
There is a caveat though, that is you may need to force a slightchange in your b ehaviour 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 down right 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.
How do you define ‘awareness’ in the context of your self-security:
Know what is happening or has happened in your field of travel
Look around you (and behind you) while moving (walking, driving, etc) 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 CrimeReports.com, which shows maps dotted with crime reports in Canada, the U.S., and the UK.
Look around you (and behind you) while traveling
This simple behaviour is more effective than you may imagine.
The reason 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, 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 awhile, 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 deal…
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!