Survival planning is something that many Americans have forgotten how to do. In many cases we don’t have to think about having a survival plan because we can just go to the store and purchase what we need. But what about those times when something happens and we can’t. We have to be prepared.
Preparation means having survival items and knowing how to use them. People who live in mountain regions prepare their vehicles for poor road conditions. They put snow and mudd tires on their vehicles and carry a shovel, Finally, emergency planning is all important
What other types of survival planning are there? How about incase of a fire does your family have a plan for getting out of the house safely. Or a flood does your family know what to do if you become separated. In today’s world we face the ever present threat of an attack; do you or your family have a plan for that?
Many people today look at survivalists like they are from another world. They believe they are just a bunch of crazy right wingers who don’t have a good grasp on reality. This is not the type of survival I am talking about. Do you carry a spare tire or a tool kit? If yes then you are a survivalist of a fashion.
Too many people get the words survivalist and militia confused. A survivalist is simply a person who tries to look ahead and prepare for what can happen. A little earlier I said that the view of a lot of people was that survivalists didn’t have a good grip on reality, so let’s take a look at reality. September 11, 2001, Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Floods and Tornados that happen yearly around the US and other countries, etc. I bet you could add some of your own memories or experiences as well.
Picture a spider’s web in your mind. Have you ever seen what happens to a web if a strand breaks? It begins to come apart; our countries infrastructure is no different. Look at what happened on 09/11/2001 the twin towers and the pentagon were attacked and our countries economic system started to rock. In many cases our countries electrical systems are connected to. Imagine being in the Midwest or one of the eastern towns or cities if there is no electricity and heat. Some would say that it could never happen, but unfortunately people die of the cold and the heat every year.
If you have a survival plan you will be better prepared for what might happen. But remember this certainty it will happen somewhere.
Your Survival Kit:
There really isn’t a one size fits all survival kit. Your survival kit needs to revolve around your personal needs. However there are some general pieces of equipment that need to go into your kit.
Let’s list in order your basic human needs:
1. Shelter: This is a must for keeping your core body temp at 98.6 you can survive in cold or hot weather for awhile without a shelter but the longer you go the chances of your surviving are severely reduced.
1. Water: Most experts say that the human body can go 48 to 72 hours without water however you need to look at your surroundings and the temp. That time period could be reduced depending on the conditions that you find your self surviving in. A good rule is to have at least 72 hours of water in your kit and at least a gallon of water per person per day. Remember that is only enough for consumption that does not include sanitary needs.
1. Food: There are many different options for survival food. Some people have the idea that if you are in a survival situation that you are going to be sitting on a stump eating dried up jerky and that may be true if all that you stock up on is jerky. Let’s take a look at some of the choices that you have.
MRE’s: These are already prepared and packaged all you have to do is open them and eat them. They have a shelf life of about 5 Years. They are good for putting in a survival kit however the last price check that I did they were costing $65.00-$70.00 for a case of 12 meals. How many mouths do you need to feed?
Dehydrated meals: these are dehydrated meals that require water to re- hydrate and are packaged in a bag designed to poor water into to prepare. These are light meals and pack easily however like MRE’s they are expensive. The last time I checked they were $4.50-$7.00 per meal.
Canned food: Canned food is not easy to pack but it is less expensive than the above options.
Making your own packaged food: This is my favorite way to stock up on individual survival meals. The best way to do this is to buy an MRE and then see how close you can come to duplicating the contents. I can make 1 pack that will hold 2 meals for about $3.00.
As I said earlier it is recommended that you have at least 3 days or 72 hours worth of supplies but why stop there. Depending on the size of the kit you can have even more supplies.
Earlier I said that your survival kit needs to revolve around your needs I will explain that now. Do you have to take medication? Are you dependent on glasses? What ever your personal needs are you should at least have extra in your kit. Do you live in cold weather country? Are you in the desert? All of these are considerations to look at when it comes to stocking your kit.
Let’s look at some general items that should go into your kit:
Fire making supplies: At least 3 different sources exe. Matches, lighter and magnesium fire starter. Murphy’s Law applies always have something to fall back on.
At least 3 days supply of food: 3 days is the minimum.
At least 3 days supply of water:
2 Large garbage bags: Besides the obvious use of keeping the trash picked up they can also be used for lean-to construction, making a rain poncho etc.
Water treatment tablets: These are good if you are forced to drink pond water, river water etc. never trust water no matter how clean it looks.
A small camp or back packers cook kit: Not just for cooking you can boil water to make it good to drink.
A quality first aid kit: Again if Murphy’s Law strikes you want to be prepared.
At least 3 light sources: Flash light, light stick, Candles. Light sticks are nice they usually last up to 8-12 hours and can be hung. A flash light should only be temporary since your batteries will run out pretty quickly.
A good fishing kit: again this depends on the area where you live as to what type of kit you will need.
Strong string or 550 Para cord: Shelter construction, making snares etc.
Tent or tools to make a shelter
Hygiene: Soap, wipes, tooth brush, razor etc. lets face it when you can stay clean your outlook on life is brighter.
Spare clothes: T-shirt, pants, long sleeve shirt, socks, under wear, jacket.
A quality knife: A belt knife that is big enough to do camp chores and still small enough to skin game or fish.
A multi-tool: Excellent to have for a number of chores.
A Sharpening stone: A dull knife isn’t much good.
Extra ammunition: If you have a firearm
Water: At least 3 gallons
Communication: Two way radios, if the power is lost then the cell phone towers will probably go down.
A quality sleeping bag: 0 degree if possible.
This list is by no means exhaustive you can modify it as you need to and according to your skill level. The important thing is to know how to use each and every piece of equipment and where it is stored in your kit, by this I mean you need to be able to find what you need in the dark. It is also important to check your equipment every once in a while and don’t be afraid to take it out and do survival scenarios with it. That is the best way to know what you need when the real thing hits.
Don’t forget that if there are more people in your family, then you will need a kit for each person. Kids are a different consideration due to the fact that they can’t carry as much gear as an adult.
What type of container to put your survival contents into:
For the purpose of keeping it simple I’m gong to go with the Backpack. What type of backpack is your choice however the tried and true military surplus in my view is perfect for the purpose of survival. If you decide to use a commercial back pack you will want to use some common sense. By this I mean if you find you’re self in the type of survival situation where you do not want to be found there is nothing that makes a good target quite like a bright colored hikers backpack.
The next consideration is your other family, it will do you good to have these supplies if they don’t each person needs a pack also. This can also aid when it comes to pooling supplies.
As I write this there are Ice Storms happening in certain parts of the country the last death count was 23 people. I have to ask could this have been avoided? Can you avoid this happening to you? Make one of these packs for you and each one of your family and practice with it know it inside and out. If something doesn’t happen that’s great if it does at least you are ready for it.
Practice! Practice! Practice!