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Top Survival Priority: Water or Shelter?

Top Survival Priority: Water or Shelter?

Where should you be setting your priorities in a survival situation?

Survivalist and preppers understand that the essentials must be covered in order to sustain them should there be a catastrophic event. Sure, planning has gone into making a bug out bag and there have been some skills which have been honed in order to achieve this, but which element should be the top of the top? Should you focus on your food or your water as your main priority?

The Easy Answer

Focus on Shelter.shelter2 This may come as a shock to some people, but the reality of the situation is that you have already acquired your water for the first 5 days. Granted, this will not sustain you for the long run and you will need to find a water source, but if you have done your prepping and planning strategically (meaning that you have not waited until a catastrophic event has occurred) you already have located a sustainable water source.

What would cause you to need to find alternate shelter from your plan?

Your disaster preparedness plan should have a definitive location for your shelter and your water. However, the area can become compromised based upon several factors. These can include:

  • Military presence around your location is too strong – There is a theory that the closer you are to danger the safer you will be. This is not true in a catastrophic event. If your shelter is too close to a military base of operations, you will more than likely be found and seized.
  • Other Preppers have acquired the spot – Yes, you could fight to the death over the area, but this is really not the way that you want to start out your survival. The only way that I would say that you should duke out the survival spot is if you have erected a structure such as a bunker and another person has tried to occupy it.
  • Catastrophic Situations have unpredictably made the area insecure or unyielding – In a catastrophic event you will not be able to predict with certainty how the terrain will be affected. Should you find that the area in your disaster plan is unsuitable, you will need to go to another location.

Shelter should be sought over water as the environment is going to be harsh. As you are looking for an area in which to live, simply finding a spot that has water is not going to be sufficient. You need to ensure that there is a food source, water, a means of getting out quick if needed, tactical advantages, vantage points, the proximity to dangers, egresses, natural lighting, and the condition of the soil (just to name a few).  Now, keep in mind that during a catastrophic event, you will be battling against the terrain as well as everyone else to find a spot. The best solution: Find multiple spots prior to an event occurring.

The more difficult answer

Where shelter is a priority and will need to be found in order to keep you from over exertion, dehydration, as well as provide the basic functionality of a shelter, water may be the top priority depending upon the conditions. Should an event occur and the heat index rise to a substantial level you will need to find water and find it quickly. Granted, you will need to find a shelter to keep from getting sunburned and dehydrated, but without water you will die anyway.

shelter1

You should not spend more than 2 days looking for shelter. If you have to think of water vs shelter and you have a 5 day pack, you need to ensure that you will be able to allot time to finding water. If after the end of 2 days you have not found s sustainable shelter, you will need to just make do with what is available and seek out some sustainable water. You do NOT want to totally deplete your bug out bags water prior to finding a renewable source of water.

It’s all about the location

Finally, when you are thinking about your survival plan consider where your plan is located. Are you depending on wilderness survival? If so, you will need to focus on the shelter first, as water is more abundant in the wilderness (usually). Are you planning for urban survival? Water will be your main priority as there will be plenty of abandon buildings and structures which you can choose to take shelter in. Look for residences with external water heaters as a quick way to gain access to stored and safe water.

Be prepared and you will not have to prioritize

Where you cannot fully plan for the worst situation, you can be prepared to survive. Preppers and survivalist who have a plan and a backup plan or two should have a few locations selected in various locations which provide ample shelter as well as have a natural water source. Bug out bags should be equipped with tarps and water to provide for immediate shelter and water if needed, but these should be understood to be temporary solutions. Bags which have water straws and water filters can maximize the time that a person can look for a shelter or a route to their bug out location. Do not limit yourself to one plan or have your location around one main river (For example: you would not want to have 15 locations picked along the Mississippi River. If the river becomes polluted to the point of not being able to use it you have 15 useless locations). Diversify your locations around several natural water supplies to maximize your potential for one of the locations to be functional in a catastrophic event.

It is in the best interest of the prepper/survivalist to perform checks on their shelter and water locations. Revamp your plan if you find weaknesses in your plan or if the shelter and water desirability change (for example a 4 lane highway is constructed cutting you off from accessing your shelter without compromising your safety). Prepare, plan, re-plan, and you should survive.

Things I Wish I Knew About Water Purification Before I First Started

I’m sure you’ve heard stories of solo hikers or bikers that manage to get themselves lost in the wilderness, and then, after battling with nature and its extremes, they return to civilization because of their will to survive and of course – that handy bottle of water.

We humans can only survive around 3 to 4 days without water, while staying alive without food is much easier, because trying to survive in extreme heat conditions can actually worsen your thirst and your body will start craving more fluids.

While over-hydration is not a good thing either, you will still always need a certain amount of water in your body so that your organs can function fluently.

When you find yourself lost in the wild or venturing through unknown and tricky terrains, carrying enough water with you can be hard.

This is why water purification methods have been devised by survivalists who understand how important constant access to clean water is when you are traveling off-the-grid.

However, many people are left regretting the fact that they didn’t know ‘enough’ about water purification, before venturing into the wild.

So here are a few pointers that can help you understand water purification to upgrade your survival chances.

Be Conscious About the Water Sources You Choose

Your best option for retrieving pure water is from sources of clear flowing water from areas where there are no people around, no manmade buildings or any obvious signs of pollution.

When you are making your way through the wilderness and you run across a stream or a spring, you should try to fill up as many bottles of water as you have.

Ponds, lakes, & Rivers

You should know that ponds, lakes and rivers are less ideal sources of water since the first two are water bodies that are stagnant, which means that it may have a lot of bacteria, while rivers can often typically be heavily polluted.

Things I Wish I Knew About Water Purification Before I First Started

Be extra careful after the area has experienced any flooding, or if there are population centers or chemical plants operating nearby.

Snow & Ice

As long as this is not frozen seawater, ice and snow are also great and instantly available sources or pure, or at least, clean water in the winter season.

You shouldn’t et ice or snow though, since that lowers your body temperature quite a lot and does not do much to quench your thirst.

You should still purify ice or snow after it has melted, but only as long as it isn’t brown, yellow or black in color. Adding snow to a hot pot and melting it will make for an awful taste.

Filtering & Digging for Clean Water

You can also try to retrieve clean water from mud, dry river beds or any other kinds of low lying terrain.

One thing that I haven’t particularly tried but have heard numerous times about is creating a swamp well which is done by digging up a hole and then trying to shore it up back from the shoreline.

The main concept behind this procedure is trying to find bodies of clean water underground which are usually present in excess around other large bodies of water like oceans or seas.

However, while all of the aforementioned ways of looking for clean water are very useful, sometimes you are stuck with very limited options and the only thing that you can do is look for possible purification methods that can help you.

Also, it is never a good idea to plan a risky trip in water scarce areas, because if you get lost, your survival instincts will be the only thing that can help you stay alive.

Boiling Water

The best way to purify water is through boiling, and it is also the easiest.

All you need is a little bit of equipment along with a camp stove or a campfire.

You should try to bring the water you have to a full boil until you have rolling bubbles as the pot simmers over high heat, and make sure that you let those bubbles roll for at least five minutes to ensure maximum purification.

Then cool it down and drink up!

Purification Pumps or Filtration

When you make a visit to a camping supplies store, you will find a number of different kinds of filters and purifying pumps that actually enables you to clean water almost instantly.

This can easily be done by squeezing water though charcoal or ceramic filters, after which it is treated with chemicals to become safe for drinking.

There are a variety of hi-tech water bottles available that have this process built in as mechanism, so that water can be purified without being pumped from bottle to bottle.

The purification takes place as you suck the water into your mouth through the head of the water bottle. 

Tablets & Drops for Purification

This is a very inexpensive and simple procedure, but the water extracted through this method will not necessarily be the best in taste.

The easiest way of purifying any kind of wild water is simply by dissolving purification drops or tablets in it and then waiting for a few minutes.

You can either use Iodine, which is more common, but potassium permanganate and chlorine can also be highly effective.

You should let the water be for at least 20 minutes after adding these chemicals before you can think of consuming it, and if the taste is unpleasant, use powdered fruit juice mixes to mask the taste.

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Survival Gear: 10 Must Have Items to Survive When SHTF

Survival Gear; 10 Must Have Items to Survive When SHTF

Millions of Americans believe that in the not-too-distant future, America, and possibly the entire world, could be mired in a disaster of epic, Armageddon-sized proportions.
Whether it comes from social upheaval, natural, act-of-God disasters, economic failure, world war, or even extraterrestrial attack, concerned individuals are preparing for the worst.
Collectively, the apocalyptic event is known as when the SHTF, and is expected to be the ultimate challenge to mankind’s survival.
SHTF stands for Sh*t Hits the Fan.The Internet is fairly replete with information on what to expect and how to prepare for such a catastrophe.
Individuals preparing for impending doom are called doomsday preppers.
However, even governments have accepted the possibility of a rapid, virtually overnight natural disaster, or the total downfall of organized, civilized society.Huge underground warehouses have been constructed and are being stocked with seeds from nearly every tree and plant known to man.
In addition, animal and human DNA and the most beneficial medicines are also being stocked to give humanity a chance to survive any impending disaster or even the Armageddon, be it natural, extraterrestrial, or man-made.

survival gear

10 Things You Should Have in Your SHTF Survival Supplies

Whether you have a family or are an individual, there are certain things that are crucial to your survival in the event of a local, national, or worldwide calamity. You will need to provide food, water and shelter; those are the big three you will need for you and your family to survive.

Any creature comfort-related items beyond that won’t be absolutely necessary in an emergency. If you have the ability and resources to satisfy additional needs and desires, that is fine, but the primary three needs are what will help you survive and what deserve your focus.

The following list of basic items should be included in your survival kit, or bug out bag.

1. Tool For Cutting or Chopping

This item should be of substantial size to accommodate cutting or chopping down trees for cooking, warmth, and possibly even shelter requirements.

A hatchet or large survival knife, complete with a honing stone and sheath or carrying case is preferred. A hatchet may also be used as a hammer.

Some survival knives even have tools in the handle, things like: compass, string saw, light fishing tackle and even a small sewing kit.

2. Multi-Purpose Tool

A multi-purpose tool has a number of elements that go beyond simple cutting, making the multi-purpose tool an exceptional item to have.

survival gear
Things like scissors, knife, screwdriver, pliers, can opener, bottle opener, and other attached tools are not as frivolous as they may seem.
In a true survival situation that impacts entire cities, regions, or countries, you may need to scavenge for foodstuffs.
Fresh foods may be contaminated; even if they aren’t contaminated, they are not going to last for long; canned goods, bottled water and other liquids may be your only options.

The additional tools can be used for animal skinning and constructing or maintaining a functional shelter.

3. Water Purification or Filtration

Fresh water may be contaminated; that will require purifying or desalinating water to satisfy hydration needs.

Humans can survive only a few days without fresh water.
There is a variety of items available online that can be used hundreds or even thousands of times.

It is highly recommended that your survival kit includes several.

4. Fire Starter

Matches are fine, but they can be easily ruined by water or even humidity and mildew. It is best to go with what is called a permanent match, or a flint or magnesium rod.

The permanent match is an enclosed “match” that stores inside a metal container and lights up when removed from the container.
click here to get yours
The flint and magnesium rods, when scraped with a steel object such as a knife blade, create sparks that will ignite dry tinder and paper.

In the eventuality that you do not have any tinder or paper, cotton balls soaked with petroleum jelly will work exceptionally well.

5. Duct Tape

There are far too many practical, helpful uses for duct tape to list here.

However, a few of them are: fire starting, building and repairing furniture, building and maintaining a shelter, emergency first aid care, crafting an emergency glass or bowl, and repairing tools.

There are entire websites devoted to the use of duct tape for a vast array of uses. Include as much duct tape in your survival kit as you possibly can; you will not regret it.

6. First Aid and Emergency Kit

Include basics like band aids, material for tourniquets, eye pads and cloth compresses, safety pins, thermometer, compass, antibiotics and painkillers.

Place them in a waterproof container, preferably something flexible if possible so it will conform to the inside of a backpack or duffel bag and use less space.

A double-zippered plastic bag is one option to consider.

7. Para-Cord or Rope

Para-cord is the cord that keeps parachutists safely attached to their parachutes when jumping.

It is also what individuals use for rock climbing, and is designed to be super strong and durable. However, rope is a good replacement in emergency situations because paracord can be used for shelter building, rescue, perimeter security, traversing structures and much more.

FYI – paracord doesn’t work as a suitable replacement for climbing rope, however in an emergency situation it may be a last resort that you can use while still keeping your bug out bag light enough to carry. If you have extra room, we highly recommend adding climbing rope if you absolutely believe you’ll need it.

8. Fishing Gear

If you have enough room for a fishing rod and reel, that’s great. However, only the basics are really necessary: lures, fish eggs, and fishing line will work.

You can always organize and cast the fishing line using a tin can, bottle, or stick.

If you can dig up worms with a flat stone, or even your axe or knife, that will help too. Grubs, caterpillars and other bugs also make great bait.

9. Poncho

In addition to being good as rain gear, a poncho can also be used for shelter and even for warmth if necessary.

It can also be used as an over-the-shoulder bag for carrying stuff, or it can be used to construct a travois, or litter, to carry wood, supplies, or an injured person.

10. Flashlight and Extra Batteries

A reliable, compact LED flashlight is indispensable for the purposes discussed here.

The ideal way to supplement a regular flashlight is to get one that recharges by turning the attached handle; the light does not last as long as a regular flashlight, but they are perfect for non-emergency use to save battery power in the LED flashlights.
And if you do run out of batteries, a rechargeable flashlight will at least provide you with some light.Remember that most batteries, after they have run out, will regenerate somewhat after a few weeks or longer if just left alone outside of the flashlight.
Also, if flashlights are going to be stored for days or longer, remove the batteries so they don’t slowly drain.Obviously, if you have a family to care for and protect, you should try to fit multiples of some of the aforementioned items, like: water purification and filtration items; first aid supplies, fishing gear and extra batteries.
flashlights-for-americans
If possible, each teen and adult should have their own multi-purpose tool, poncho, flashlight with extra batteries, first aid kit and fishing gear in their own backpack or bug out bag.While the chances of such a disastrous event, one that would impact the entire United States or the world, may seem like science fiction, there are many conditions and situations that suggest the distinct potential for the worst case scenario.
Earth has a fragile ecosystem, which many think is being compromised by human irresponsibility; scientists do not discount major earthquakes or meteor crashes in our not-too-distant future; religious conflicts and terrorism are on the increase; reported extraterrestrial activities on and around our planet have also increased.Being prepared for any eventuality is always a good thing, and it is the prudent individual who takes heed. If you are of that mold, then the aforementioned 10 items should be in your survival plan.Keep this survival gear in mind.

Top 10 Survival Gear Mistakes To Avoid

If you’ve ever prepared for an extreme expedition — scaling one of the Seven Summits or traipsing the wilds of the Amazon — then you know that things will go wrong all of the time.

A courageous adventure into the wild means that you have to be prepared to face the challenges and the obstacles that come from being in a remote part of the world without the conveniences of the modern world.

That’s why it’s so important to prepare ahead as much as you can and to anticipate the mishaps that could occur.

I’ve been through enough situations out in the wilderness to know that if something is going to wrong, it probably will.

Sometimes you can’t change the fact that danger or extreme conditions are ahead.

What you can do is prepare for the worst and be happy you can survive with the very best of them when the situation presents itself.

If you are ready to prepare for your adventure of a lifetime, then follow my guide listing the “Top 10 Survival Gear Mistakes To Avoid.”

When you find yourself lost in the Arctic tundra, you’ll be happy you packed the right gear to get you through the night and into the next day of trekking.

This guide will get you there, so let’s get started with these tips to avoid disaster with your gear!

1. Failing to Have an Emergency Plan

The first mistake many novice trekkers make when they are planning their first expedition is to not fully think through their emergency plan.

You can mitigate disaster simply by having the right gear to get you out of a terrible situation.

emergency plan

survival gear

 

That means purchasing a Personal Beacon Locator (PBL), a small battery-operate device that you can activate with the push of a button.

It communicates with global satellites, and let’s emergency responders know where to find you. Hopefully nothing will go wrong.

But if it does, your PBL will get you out of a hairy situation.

2. Forgetting Your Rain Gear

Don’t skimp on the rain gear. It’s going to rain most locales you go — at some point.

It’s better to have a weather-resistant outer layer, a rain jacket, rain pants and weather-resistant boots packed in your backpack for the times when the thunderstorms wreak havoc on your campsite.

You don’t want to be wet and cold.

You can get hypothermia, and at the very least, you’ll be miserable.

It takes a long time for drenched camping clothes to dry out — especially if it is damp for several days.

3. Not Enough Food

One of the biggest mistakes you can make is fail to pack too little food. You need food to keep up your energy.

There are resourceful ways you can pack high-energy food that does not take up a lot of room and that is lightweight.

For example, pack a mix of energy bars, trail mix, dried fruit, vitamins and dehydrated food that comes alive when boiled.

If you are going to overpack anything, then overpacking lightweight food that is high in energy and protein is always Okay.

4. Dry Like a Desert

Invest in water bottles and water filtration systems. You can’t rely on just one water bottle.

Pack at least two traditional water bottles — some have built-in purification systems. Also consider a water pack that you can wear on your back.

It has tubes that you can use to drink water as you walk.

Finally, have a backup supply of water purification tablets or a water purification wand that literally can turn dirty freshwater into clean drinking water.

5. Shiver Me Timbers

Another big mistake you can make with your gear is to fail to pack the clothing and gear that will keep you warm.

That means everything from a sub-zero sleeping bag that helps to regulate your body temperature, to warm wool socks, to hand and toe warmers for emergency situations.

Always prepare for the onslaught of a chilly night.

You don’t want to risk hypothermia or frostbite — especially if you are out on the trail all alone.

Prepare ahead to stay warm.

6. Alone in the Darkness

Don’t leave home with without several gadgets and tools that can give you light in the midst of darkness.

For example, consider packing a headlamp, a solar-powered lantern, a batch of strike-anywhere matches, a lighter, and a battery-operated heater.

You’ll want to be able to light a fire and see what you are doing no matter what the conditions are.

Sometimes you will find yourself at a rainy campsite and you won’t be able to start a blazing fire.

That’s where your mini, battery-operated heater will come in handy.

You’ll also be loving your situation when you can just flip on your handy headlamp to read, prepare dinner in the darkness, set up your tent, and do a myriad other activities that require more hands than you have to spare.

7. Where Am I?

It’s likely that at some point you will get lost.

Two of the most economical and important gear items you can pack is a compass and a set up maps.

Compasses are lightweight and crucial. They can always get you back on the right track. Paper maps are easy to pack and to pull out — just make sure you are protecting them.

Either buy foldable plastic ones that cannot get damaged by water, or pack your paper maps in a plastic baggie.

 

8. Leaving the Duct Tape at Home

You may not think of it at first, but packing some simple items like duct tape, rope, a hunting knife and a small toolkit with a hammer, nails and fish hooks will be helpful to you when your gear ruptures or breaks.

There is nothing worse than to get to your campsite only to find a raccoon ate through part of your sleeping bag.

Patch up that hole with duct tape! Find that your tent is swaying in a gusty wind? Secure it with a length of rope.

9. No Motivation

You may think it’s trivial at first, but it’s really important to make sure a personal memento is on your gear list.

When you get lonely out in the woods or when you face a real disaster that forces you to consider whether you are willing to fight for your life, your personal memento (photos of loved ones, a sentimental item, a love letter) will motivate you to continue working hard to get out of your current situation.

Many people have endured extreme conditions by the sheer motivation of a photo that reminds them that love is worth fighting for — so don’t forget the memento.

It may have more power than you think in the long run.

10. Packing Too Much

Now that I’ve given you a list of gear mistakes to avoid and told you the top things you need to pack, I want to remind you that there is something as packing too much.

One novice mistake is to overpack your gear.

Sometimes it takes more than one go-around to get the right mix of gear and to get your pack to feel manageable. Remember that it is going to be on your back and you have to carry it for hours at a time for many days. So choose your gear wisely.

Top 10 Survival Gear Mistakes To Avoid

10 Ways to Immediately Improve Your Survival Gear

Are you someone with a sense of adventure?

Do you plan trips that are a far cry from a day at the beach?

Great tips for improving your survival gear

If you are an adventurer who likes to get lost in the wild, then it’s extremely important to pack the right gear so that you are protected and safe throughout your journey.

Preparing to survive in remote locales can be an expensive undertaking, but there are a few simple tweaks you can make to your current supply of survival gear that will improve the efficiency of your gear and that will help you out in times of distress.

No hiker or adventurer wants to get to the end of an arduous day only to find that her firewood is too damp to light or that his water is undrinkable.

survival gear

Those are just a few of the common mishaps that occur for many adventurers.

Follow our guide of the top 10 Ways to Immediately Improve Your Survival Gear, and you’ll be on your way to staying safe, happy and warm on your next trip. Here’s what to do:

1. Keep Tabs on Your Steps

It’s easy to get lost when you are navigating unfamiliar territory, and that’s why it’s important to keep tabs on your steps.

With each step you take, you should be noting your surroundings.

Mark landmarks in your mind and via your watch so that you have an idea of how long you have been trekking.

If you don’t have a compass, buy one.

Carry maps with you and place them in resealable plastic bags to help keep them readable even if they get wet.

2. Know the Forest

Every adventurer has turned into a scavenger at some point in his or her journey.

It’s inevitable if you are a thrill-seeking adventurer because you will end up off the beaten path somewhere far from a river where you can fish or in a rain-soaked countryside where there is no chance of starting a fire to cook a hot meal from your provisions pack.

That’s where it can really help to know the kinds of plants you can find and eat in the forest.

Of course, not all forest plants and fungi are edible.

Some, in fact, can be the end of you, and that’s why you should educate yourself now. So make sure you pack a lightweight booklet that identifies forest plants and fungi that are safe to eat.

You can use these plants and fungi as a backup when you aren’t able to cook on an open fire or when you run out of your emergency supply of energy bars.

3. Protect Your Water Supply

Water is the most important item you can have on an adventure.

You need to be drinking at least eight glasses a day — and even more when you are venturing into the wilds of the world.

Without proper hydration, you are likely to get sick and dehydrated — and who knows if someone will find you on your trail. Protect your water supply by investing in packs of water purification tablets or a purification wand.

You want to be able to take any freshwater water source and make it safe to drink. It’s that important, so grab a packet of those tabs and slip them into your pack.

4. Pack Strike-Anywhere Matches

It’s likely that you will encounter a campsite that recently has been doused with a good amount of rain.

At that point, you aren’t going to get wood to burn at all.

So make sure you’ve packed some strike-anywhere matches and a small batch of dry kindling. It may not produce a huge fire, but it will produce enough warmth to help you dry off a little.

5. Waterproof Your Shoes

If you don’t have waterproof shoes and you don’t want to invest in them at this time, then at least purchase a waterproofing spray.

This will give your boots a weather-resistant coating.

Your feet are going to be happy at the end of the day if you are traveling through rain-soaked countryside.

6. Pack Hand and Toe Warmers

Adventurers who are trying to survive in extreme temperatures really do need to invest in the proper sub-zero clothing, tents and sleeping bags.

But if you are traveling in cold temperatures that are above zero, make sure you’ve got several packets of hand and toe warmers in your pack.

These packs are very convenient.

Usually you just shake them and them insert them into your shoes and gloves. Many packs provide a good amount of heat for at least four or more hours.

That’s enough to get you through at least half a night of sleep, and it will make a daytime trek all the more comfortable and enjoyable.

7. Refill Your First Aid Kit

After every trip, make sure to pull out your first aid kit and refill the items you used.

A good rule of thumb for a first aid kit is that it have basic items for sanitizing and bandaging small scrapes and wounds and it also have some supplies for triaging a freak accident.

Brush up on your emergency triage skills and carry a small booklet of emergency medicine instructions with you.

It’s always better to be prepared with the right items in case something goes terribly wrong while you are on your trip.

8. Put New Batteries in Your Gear

Before heading back on the trail, make sure you have replaced all of the batteries in your battery-operated gear. Some of those gadgets might include a headlamp, a flashlight, your Personal Beacon Locator (PBL), a handheld radio, your electric toothbrush and so on.

Carry extra batteries with you, as some of these gadgets you will be using for many hours a night. In addition, consider upgrading some of your gadgets to solar-powered ones.

A headlamp, for example, can get powered up for the night if you are walking around with it on your head during the day.

You’ll be green and efficient at the same time.

9. Remember a Memento

If you travel alone, you know how lonely it can get out there.

That’s why it’s always a good idea to make sure you have a memento or personal item that reminds you of the people you care about and love.

If, for any reason, you find yourself fighting to survive out in the wild, a memento has the powerful psychological effect of motivating you to keep fighting and to try to continue to live.

This may sound morbid, but psychiatrists have proven that a personal connection to the world is perhaps the most motivating factor in willing someone not to give up in the midst of excruciatingly painful circumstances.

10. Prepare an Odds-and-Ends Kit

Finally, make sure you are prepared for the unexpected. Put together an odds-and-ends kit that is complete with things like a hunting knife, rope duct tape, safety pins, carabiners, and other small tools and supplies that might make the difference in a situation in which your gear malfunctions.

For example, if there is a sudden rip in your tent, then duct tape could be a temporary fix to at least keep the inside of your tent dry.

There are many different uses for odd-and-ends supplies, and your job simply is to have them available when the occasion rises for them.

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20 Websites To Visit If You Want The Best Survival Gear

20 Sites for Survival Gear and Outdoor Enthusiasts

where to buy survival gear
For the avid survival enthusiast and the novice camper alike, proper equipment can make or break your outdoor experience in a hurry. Making sure you have quality equipment that’s built to last is a great start for planning any outdoor trip, be it camping, hunting, exploring, or even an afternoon of hiking.

One important thing to remember while preparing to go on a trek is to be prepared, but not be bogged down. Minimalist camping is a big trend for a reason with survivalists and outdoor enthusiasts from around the world figuring out just what it takes to get by and packing accordingly.

If you’re planning to go camping or just looking to get prepared for the next time you’d like to enjoy nature on a whim, here are 20 websites that offer a wide variety of survival products.

1. MajorSurplus.com Has a Wide Range of Survival Gear

The folks over at www.majorsurplus.com have done a terrific job of providing an online marketplace catering to every need for the avid survivalist.

From military surplus to actual camping gear, they’ve compiled an enormous amount of equipment for anybody looking to do any outdoor activity.

They also offer coupons and discounts in their newsletter, so you can get email alerts for specific brands and products.

2. More Than Just Products at Off The Grid

Offthegrid.com goes the extra mile in terms of survival gear.

They sell camping equipment and out door supplies, but they also put a strong emphasis on actual survival situations.

When it comes to outdoor activity, Off the Grid has a great selection of items for any emergency or survival experience.

They also offer how-to videos and blogs for a wide variety of situations.

3. The National Rifle Association’s Survival Selection

Fire starting kits, hand turbines for phone charging, and a myriad of other survival and home defense items are available at the www.nrastore.com.

In addition to camping and outdoor gear, they also have a sister site at www.nratactical.com for hunting and self defense equipment including firearms.

4. Emphasis on Preparedness at Forge Survival Supply

While Forge Survival Supply has an online marketplace for different equipment, they also offer guides and survival tips for an enormous amount of situations.

Bug out bag check lists, blogs and email newsletters with survival information, and an easy to use website really make www.forgesurvivalsupply.com worth checking out.

5. A Community for Survivalists at Survival Cache

At www.survivalcache.com you’ll find much more than just a marketplace selling goods.

They have an active community of survivalists, survival book reviews, and quite a few guides outlining the essentials of certain types of equipment.

They do have a great store as well, and combined with the knowledge to be gained is a terrific starting point for any outdoor enthusiast.

6. S.O.L. Focuses on The Little Things

Another website offering not just products but also learning resources, www.surviveoutdoorslonger.com really does a great job of providing information.

They don’t just look at the basic equipment or focus on having the widest variety, but also at smaller items that many people may not consider.

If you’re looking to get the most out of your equipment in terms of efficiency and preparedness, S.O.L. is a good jumping off point.

7. Camping Survival Offers A Great Selection

A very large marketplace for survival gear, www.campingsurvival.com is an online store that focuses on selling equipment.

Great if you’re looking to compare brands and prices, they have a large array of items in quite a few different categories.

They don’t offer any other benefits like blogs or instructional videos, however.

8. Be Prepared to Survive With Information and Supplies

In addition to survival gear and outdoor activity items, www.bepreparedtosurvive.com puts a lot of focus on being ready to deal with any major catastrophe or emergency situation.

Providing instructional videos, books, and guides while also having an online store sets this website apart from quite a few others.

Learning how to use tools can make a significant difference in terms of surviving in the wild or during a major catastrophe.

9. Not Just Knives from Gerber

Gerber is known worldwide for their wide selection of high quality cutlery and blades, but they also sell varying types of survival equipment.

Small emergency kits and fire starting tools are just the tip of the iceberg at www.gerbergear.com.

They mostly offer tools small equipment, so if you’re looking for a one stop shop this might not be the best choice.

Don’t underestimate the quality of a good hatchet or skinning knife, however.

10. Recommendations from Gray Wolf Survival

While not a traditional marketplace, www.graywolfsurvival.com is a great resource for finding reviews and information.

If you’re serious about the equipment you’ll be using for a survival experience, Gray Wolf Survival can be a way to find out the ups and downs of products you may have been previously considering, as well as recommendations for gear you never thought of in the first place.

11. Survival Kits Ready To Go

Specializing in complete survival bags and bug out bags, www.survivalkit.com really sticks to their name.

The first thing you’ll notice upon visiting the site are featured bug out bags that come fully stocked with everything you’d need, as well as blogs and tips for dealing with any emergency.

12. Independent Survivalist Gear at My Patriot Supply

Not a typical camping or survival goods store, www.mypatriotsupply.com puts emphasis on being self sufficient and prepared for any emergency situation.

With heirloom seeds for growing your own food and water filtration as a few examples, they’re determined to help customers be ready for anything.

13. Survival Life is Here To Teach

Reviews, how to guides, kits, product reviews, and an online store are just a few of the things www.survivallife.com has to offer.

For learning tips and tricks, there are few sites that provide as much information.

14. Bug Out Bags From The Ready Store

Another website specializing in survival kits and pre-packed bug out bags, www.thereadystore.com has an enormous variety of different packages available.

No matter the emergency or outdoor situation you’re looking to cope with, you’ll be able to find guides and equipment here.

15. Tactical Gear at BrigadeQM

Less emphasis on outdoor survival equipment and more on tactical and hunting gear, www.brigadeqm.com offers a moderately wide selection of gear that leans more towards military surplus than survival.

16. Equipped.org Offering Both Gear and Information

While www.equipped.org doesn’t have their own direct marketplace, they do provide reviews and guides on different products.

They also have direct breakdowns if you’d like to make your own bug out bags or survival kits.

17. Ideas Courtesy of The Red Cross

Not so much a market as it is a good place to figure out what you’d need in an emergency or survival scenario, www.redcross.org really goes above and beyond in terms of how to make your own emergency kits.

They’ll help you figure out how you can make your own bug out bags with a lot of ‘just in case’ mentality while not overdoing it.

18. Military Surplus at US Cav

Another website that offers camping gear and military surplus alike, www.uscav.com has a great store and not much else.

Any piece of survival equipment you can imagine is available here, and their prices are very fair.

19. Medical Supplies and Kits

At www.adventuremedicalkits.com you’ll find some great medical equipment for emergency situations.

Ranging from single items to advanced medical packs, this website is very similar to other pre-made kit websites but with an emphasis on medical preparedness.

20. An Obvious Choice in Amazon

It would be disingenuous not to recommend www.amazon.com for the more fiscally conscious outdoor enthusiasts. While there are countless sites offering guides, piles of equipment and premade kits, Amazon is one of the best resources for price comparing and reading item reviews.

Before you make any purchases, try to see if you can find the item on Amazon to see how the it’s held up in actual survival situations.

Any outdoor activity can be an exciting and rewarding experience, especially if you’ve packed well and with a bit of thought.

Putting consideration into what you bring will help you save precious space, while research can show you a few neat tips or tricks that you may not have considered otherwise.

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11 Things I Wish I Knew About Survival Gear When I First Started

11 Things I Wish I Knew About Survival Gear When I First Started

If you’re an adventure seeker like me, you know how thrilling it can be to take on the next new challenge.

I’ve climbed the Seven Summits, hiked through the Amazon and camped out in more remote map dots around the globe than I can count.

What I’ve learned over the years is that having the right survival gear is key to a successful mission.

Without the right survival gear you’re either miserable or worse, injured or dead, so it’s important to make wise choices.

U.S. Marine Lt. Heath Clifford with Marine Aircraft Group-29 (MAG-29), uses a mirror to signal a MV-22B Osprey during a Tactical Recovery of Aircraft and Personnel (TRAP) exercise aboard Al Asad Air Base, Iraq on October 23, 2007. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Michael Haas) (Released)

Image Source: Wikipedia

 

Why invest so much time, money and training into an extreme adventure only to have it fall apart because you didn’t have the right gear?

Read on to learn from me in my guide, “11 Things I Wish I Knew About Survival Gear When I First Started.”

You’re on your way to a successful mission if you can prepare ahead of time and get the right gear lined up.

Let’s get started:

1. Not All Gear Is Created Equal

First things first: Not all gear is created equal. You want to save money, save it on the things that you really can skimp on — like generic hand sanitizer for your first aid kit.

Don’t skimp on the important gear that is going to keep you alive in extreme conditions.

You really do need the sub-zero sleeping bag if you’re going into the Arctic.

Save your money and budget wisely.

Having the top gear that matches the rigors of your trip matters.

2. Don’t Forget the Headlamp

The headlamp is a life-saver no matter where you’re adventure may take you.

It makes everything easy. Gutting a fish in pitch blackness?

The headlamp saves you. Trying to set up your tent under the stars? The headlamp saves you.

Writing home to mom? You get the picture.

Buy the headlamp. Click here to get yours today.

They come in a variety of sizes and colors, which makes selecting one fun, and many have a long battery life.

Make sure to pack extra batteries, however, because you’ll probably be using the headlamp for long periods of time, and you’ll always want to have access to light.

3. If You Have the Choice, Buy Waterproof

It doesn’t matter where you go, at some point it’s going to rain. And it probably will rain a lot.

There is nothing more miserable than being tired and cold and wet.

You can get sick very quickly, and so you need to prepare ahead for damp conditions. If gear that you are eying has a waterproof option, then buy it.

It’s better to be safe than to be soaking wet.

Consider getting waterproof pants, a jacket and boots.

Make sure your tent is weather resistant and is made to withstand extreme weather and temperatures.

4. Invest in a Sub-Zero Sleeping Bag

When it’s cold, it’s cold — and there’s nothing that a fire can do to help.

Sub-zero sleeping bags are designed to keep you toasty when the world outside is shuddering.

They come at a price, but again, this is an item you don’t want to skimp on.

It’s important for your body heat to stay at a normal temperature so that you don’t get hypothermia.

5. Never Leave Home Without an Emergency First Aid Kit

Things are going to happen.

You’ll cut your finger with a fishing hook.

You’ll stumble on the mountain and twist your ankle.

You’ll need triage, and you’ll be the only person to do it.

So make sure you’ve got an emergency first aid kit complete with all of the items you need to sanitize, bandage and even splint.

You’ll be thanking yourself when those moments arrive.

6. Bring Back-Up Hydration

Water equals survival, so it’s wise not to just have one water bottle (What happens when it floats down the river?). Have back-up hydration that is packable.

There are lots of water packs designed for easy transport. And while you’re at it, it doesn’t hurt to carry a few packs of water purification tablets.

These will be a lifesaver when you can’t find clean drinking water and you need to be hydrated quickly.

7. Buy Gear That Retracts and Backs

One of the most important lessons I’ve learned as I’ve completed by missions is that you’ve got to be able to carry and unload your gear quickly and easily.

Lots of survival gear is made to pack up tightly and retract easily.

Look for those convenient features in the gear you buy so that everything rolls and packs nicely and makes it easier for you to get from Point A to Point B.

8. Your Head and Your Toes

Your head and your toes are too of the most important parts of your body to protect when you are trying to survive in the wilderness.

Most of your body heat escapes through your head, so make sure you’re protecting it with the right gear if you’re going into bitterly cold environments.

The same advice goes to your toes.

Invest in good all-weather boots that are going to protect your toes and keep them warm.

You don’t want to get frostbite in the wilderness and lose your toes as a result.

9. Light a Fire

It’s always good to carry a cigarette lighter, and if you can fit in it, a fire starter.

click here to get yours

 

Sometimes you’ll find that the wood at your camp site is too damp, and you’ll need to start the fire with a little dry kindling you’ve brought along.

Having a working lighter is easy to pack and will make it a cinch to get that fire going on those cold camping nights.

If you think it might rain in the location where you’ll be camping for the night, be looking for dry wood to collect as you make your way.

Depending on where you are, the weather can change quickly, so it’s wise to gather supplies where you can and to always be anticipating the most important thing about building a campsite — how you are going to start your fire.

10. Get a Personal Locator Beacon (PLB)or a Satellite Phone

There was one time I got very lost in the middle of the Canadian wilderness.

But I had a little device called a Personal Locator Beacon, or a PLB.

This little device allowed me to send out a signal to let rescue personnel know that I needed help. It was very easy to use.

Literally at the push of a button, you can send a signal that is beamed up to the satellites of the world and let’s the emergency spirits know you are in need of help.

It doesn’t matter where you are in the world. The Personal Locator Beacon will work for you.

It is your beacon.

The Personal Locator Beacon was one of the more expensive items I’ve invested in for my adventures because it cost several hundred dollars, but it was well worth the investment, as who knows what would have happened to me out there in the wilderness, otherwise.

Emergency responders found me, and they got me back on the right track.

Additionally, you also can consider purchasing a satellite phone.

Again, they aren’t cheap, but they another option for getting emergency help quickly, especially if you don’t purchase the Personal Locator Beacon, and the satellite phone allows you to have an actual conversation with another human being.

11. The Good Old-Fashioned Compass

Some things never change, and that it true for carrying a compass on your adventure. Invariably, you will get lost.

I told you about one mishap, but it’s happened many times to me.

Compasses today are very accurate and smart thanks to new technology, and so it’s wise to invest in one in case you are off the beaten path and need to get back on it.

Best of all, these gadgets are fairly cheap in comparison to many of the survival gear items you’ll buy in preparation for your trip.

10 Ways to Immediately Improve Your Everyday Carry Pack

We like to make sure our families and homes are prepared for the unexpected. We have shelves stocked with disaster-preparedness items: bottled water, canned goods, flashlights and batteries.

Our family members know a safe meeting spot—the basement or a hallway, maybe— to gather in case of emergency. Being ready feels great. The only problem is, we aren’t always home.

While it might not be practical to spend every possible moment in the safety of our houses, we do have a practical alternative.

Bring Survival Gear with You

One of the best ways we can stay prepared for the unexpected is by keeping a smart stash of survival gear in an everyday carry pack. That way, we will be ready for almost anything no matter where we are.

Many options of bags are available, from army-style backpacks to sleek messenger-style bags. Once you have your pack, optimize its usefulness with the following suggestions.

1. Staying Hydrated Means Staying Alive

Without hydration, our bodies shut down quickly. Always keep a reusable water bottle with fresh water in your daypack. A stainless steel canteen or thermos is your best bet, as metal is durable and holds up well despite extreme temperatures. It could also help you with cooking needs.

Pack water purification tablets so you can create more drinkable water when necessary. Consider iodine tablets or chlorine dioxide tablets. Beyond water, all living things also need a small amount of salt to stay hydrated.

Quench your body’s thirst completely by filling a re-sealable, waterproof plastic bag with electrolyte powder. This can be dissolved in drinkable water, and when your supply has been exhausted you can find a new use for the bag.

daily-water-intake_530b75fa97e16_w1500

Image Source: http://naturalon.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/daily-water-intake_530b75fa97e16_w1500.jpg

2. Fueling Up with Food Supplies

Hydration, sleep, and sustenance are our top three biological needs. Be prepared with several nutrient-rich, high-calorie meal bars. Also pack some lightweight dehydrated meals, which are optimally consumed with the addition of a small amount of water.

Be ready to find and prepare more food, if necessary. Always carry a small, metal cooking pan with a folding arm. Food can be cooked in it and eaten out of it.

Also invest in a set of metal utensils—again, they can be used for both cooking and eating. Keep a small book with an abbreviated list of edible plants found in local woods.

3. Preventing Infection with a First Aid Kit

Small wounds can turn into serious infections, if not treated properly. Pack a re-sealable, waterproof plastic bag with medical supplies.

This should include cloth squares of several sizes. Large pieces can be used as slings or tourniquets, in the case of injury. Small pieces can be used on wounds in place of gauze, and later sterilized in boiling water for re-use.

Pack several individually wrapped alcohol-soaked toilettes that can be used to disinfect cuts. Also pack band-aids, athletic tape, cotton swabs, and cotton balls. A small tub of petroleum jelly is very helpful for treating chapped or damaged skin.

4. Maintaining Your Sense of Surroundings

Not knowing where you are can be disorienting. Keep maps of local and surrounding areas in your daypack. Pack maps in a re-sealable, waterproof plastic bag.

Also keep a sturdy compass, and make sure you know how to use it properly.

5. Building and Repair with Durable Multi-Use Items

It can be difficult to know exactly what types of situations you might find yourself in. But a few survival supplies have proven themselves to be so useful that it makes sense to keep them on-hand. Rope can be used for securing branches together when building shelter, or hanging damp clothes up to dry.

Duct tape can be used to patch up damaged supplies, or cut and folded to create new items. A multi-purpose knife can help harvest wild edible plants, carve wood, and tear fabric if necessary. Pack all items in re-sealable plastic bags.

Click here

6. Warming Up and Using Light without Electricity

Exposure to the elements can be dangerous to your health. Stay warm and dry by allowing yourself to build a fire anytime, using waterproof strike-anywhere matches.

Keep a super-lightweight emergency thermal blanket in your daypack to help stay warm. Also keep a solar-powered headlamp in your supply kit.

Headlamps are extremely convenient, as they allow you to see and freely use both hands in the dark. A headlamp equipped with solar panels will stay lit for seven hours.

7. Recording Information and Communicating Off the Grid

You will often benefit from recording or swapping information with others. Make this possible by stocking your daypack with a leather-bound journal and waterproof pen.

Pack a whistle in case you ever need to sound a distress signal, and memorize SOS. A mirror can also be used to make signals, help you maintain personal hygiene, treat wounds, and stay sane if isolated.

 

8. Taking Care of Yourself

Poor personal hygiene can lead to poor health. Illness is the last thing you need in a survival situation.

Be prepared with a toothbrush, toothpaste, dental floss, and multi-purpose biodegradable soap. Use the soap for your face and body, hair, clothing, and cookware.

9. Clothing for All Situations

Keep a tiny, travel-sized sewing kit in your daypack. Make sure you have a basic understanding of how to use a needle and thread to repair clothing.

Pack a lightweight waterproof outer layer. Staying dry in inclement weather will help you maintain a healthy body temperature.

Also pack an insulating thermal layer, hat, and gloves, which may be needed to stave off cold weather. Pack extra wool socks to keep feet dry.

Wool is an excellent survival material as it is durable, dries quickly, and repels moisture.

10. Remembering the Other Important Things

Psychological research has shown how important it is for us to feel a sense of love and belonging.

Feeling connected with others not only tethers us to reality—it often gives us reason to live. Help yourself through the most unexpected and unwanted of times by keeping a personal memento or two in your daypack.

Someday, a special photograph or trinket might be just what you need to keep on pushing forward.

Click here to watch Video

Clearly Filtered Water Filters Review: Are They Any Good?

Watch this first:

 

Today’s article we will be reviewing the Clearly Filtered water bottles. I am currently testing out three different water filtration bottles from ClearlyFiltered. We’ll be reviewing these three bottles:

Clearly Filtered Athlete Water FilterClearlyFiltered Stainless Water bottle

as well as the one that we’re using as our full time hunting/fishing water bottle.

ClearlyFiltered Canteen

My personal favorite for my day-to-day is the Athlete edition. The reason for that is because it fits great in my hands, fits in my normal everyday carry pack along with fitting in the car’s cup holder perfectly.

My girlfriend was very excited about receiving “The Stainless” as she has always had these types of stainless steel water bottles and really likes them. She’s not too big on prepping/survival so this is kind of an under-the-radar way of getting her prepared for anything and everything.

And the Filtered Canteen is the perfect bottle for hunting/fishing. It holds more water and if you hunt, you know that you want to stay stationary as much as possible so this holds enough water for ya. Plus, it’s green and blends in great with the woods.

I’d recommend keeping the Canteen in your bug out bag (it comes with a little leash that can attach to your bag, all of these bottles do and I REALLY like that about them)

 

Now you’re probably thinking…. sure they look good, but how do they work? Well here’s the kicker…. they freakin kick ass and I’ve tried out a bunch of different water filter bottles.

 

Here’s one of the charts I found that compares with some of the other water filters/bottles.

 

Bottle-Comparison-New.0011

As preppers, we want something that is going to last and this will last 100+ gallons.

Although I have found that people say it’s actually much closer to 200+ gallons, I feel that for legal reasons they have to put 100+ to keep everything legal.

After testing out a few of the other types of water filters, I really like the Clearly Filtered bottles and the company is really standing behind their statements and research.    

All in all, I really like the ease of their filter. With many of the filtered bottles I’ve tested you end up expending a lot of energy sucking the water through the filter in order to actually get the drink.

To me, that’s a pain in the ass.

With the Clearly Filtered bottles, it’s as easy as drinking normally. The only downside I see with it is that I can’t “gulp or chug” my water and after long hikes/runs I sometimes just want to do that. I guess that’s where the other filters they offer come in handy.

However, as a great day to day and bug out bag essential I would definitely give my highest ratings to the guys over at Clearly Filtered.

A+ review

2

Body Armor Basics

Several months ago, I started wondering about Body Armor. Let’s face it, one of the things you can expect in a post-collapse society is people willing to do whatever it takes to get what they want. Or to have a bit of “fun”.

Having Body Armor would give you a valuable edge in such a situation, and I think we can all agree, we want every edge we can get. So I started shopping around online, looking for bullet proof vests. When I started to find them, they were the full chin-to-shin set ups for buku duckies, and quite frankly, not what I was looking for.

Then there were the ones called “carriers”, priced anywhere from $50-$150, and I thought “there’s no way it’s that cheap”. I finally realized that these were nothing more than vests with pockets that you can put armor plates into.

I was disappointed.

I was looking for just a basic bullet proof vest, and no-one seemed to carry them (I have found some since, but I’ll discuss later why they got a thumbs down). Then I got a belated Christmas present from my dad. He had pre-ordered the Survival Summit webinar, a copy for himself, and one for me. I highly recommend this resource, it’s put out by The Prepper Project, at www.theprepperproject.com.

One of the topics discussed was Body Armor!

This is where I got my basic understanding of modern Body Armor, and I’ve managed to expand my knowledge somewhat since.

Turns out, vests are pretty much a thing of the past. The ones you can get are, by necessity, constructed of flexible materiel, such as Kevlar or something similar.

This gives the vest the ability to move with the wearer, but limits it somewhat in stopping power.

I haven’t found any soft armor vests that are rated above a IIIA, and those are precious few and pricey. Most of them tend to be level II, and I wanted at least level III. Ok, let’s back up.

What does Level IIIA mean?

These are ballistic ratings, established by the National Institute of Justice. The following link is to the NIJ publication on Ballistic Resistance Standards. https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/nij/223054.pdf They start at the lowest rating, IIA, and progress through II, IIIA, III and IV.

Basically, to be a IIA, the armor has to stop 9mm, and .40 caliber, Level II has to stop 9mm and .357 magnum. IIIA has to stop all the above and up to .44 magnum. So far, these are all pistol rounds. To make the jump to the higher velocities of rifle cartridges, you have to go to Level III, which is rated to stop anything up to and including 7.62mm (rough equivalent to .308) FMJ rounds. Level IV is rated for .30 caliber Armor Piercing rounds. Now you start to see why I passed over the Level II vests earlier in my search.

My understanding of things thus far, is that there are very few Level IV plates capable of stopping multiple hits, and they are very expensive. We’re talking $250 for one plate, at the lowest price I’ve found. And so, I was left debating between a plate that can take multiple hits of *almost anything you throw at it, or something that will stand up to an AP round, then be pretty well worthless. I decided the probability of facing an AP round was fairly low, so I looked at Level III armor.

There are basically three types of armor out there, steel, ceramic, and flexible. There’s lots of different flexible plates out there, and not all are created equal. I happen to think the one’s offered by AR500 armor (my supplier) are not only an excellent value, but at the forefront of the industry.

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When it comes to steel vs. ceramic, there are several things to consider. First in my mind, ceramic plates have a shelf life. That’s right, even if they never take a hit they eventually wear out. This has mostly to do with the material used to contain the ceramic tiles that make up the plate, and bind them together. T

hey also are susceptible to high temperatures. So if you’re a police officer who keeps an “active shooter vest” in the trunk of his squad car just in case, you may need to check it every once in a while, or there’s a good chance it could fail you when you need it. The other big problem with ceramic plates is cost. I have not been able to find a ceramic level III plate the falls under $200.

Maybe that’s no big deal for you, but for me, it’s definitely a factor.

Oh, one more thing about ceramics. Remember I said they were made up of tiles? Well, that’s how they dissipate the energy from the round. The specific tile hit shatters, resulting in spent energy absorbed from the bullet. So now you have a vest with a spot approximately 2″ square that is unprotected. Maybe you’re not concerned with multiple hits, but for me that’s a problem. The plus side to ceramic is that it’s extremely light.

I’m talking, floats in water kinda light.

*Edit – since publishing this article, I am informed that the floating plates I saw were not ceramic, they were a modern type of polyethylene. This is a new type of armor to me, and I am currently researching it. Ceramic plates usually run about 5lbs*

Ask any LEO you know, wearing armor gets hot and heavy, so for you, it may be worth it to have a vest that won’t weigh you down. On to Steel. ar500 is not just the name of the company for whom I am a certified dealer, it’s a quality rating of steel.

When people go to the range and shoot steel targets, they are made of ar500 steel. This steel is crafted and tempered to such a high strength that a bullet cannot penetrate it. (Ok, not all bullets. See the balistic ratings above). It is multi-hit capable.

The only times I’ve seen penetration by anything short of an AP round was when a test placed two .308 round virtually on top of each other at 20 yards, which just isn’t a likely real life scenario.

There are two major drawbacks to steel armor.

One is the weight. Where ceramic plates are light enough to float, steel plates usually weigh around 8-9 pounds each.

The other big problem they have is called Spalling, or Fragmentation. Essentially, when the bullet hits a plate harder than itself, the energy of that projectile is spent by the bullet itself exploding, and turning into shrapnel flying out in a 360 degree pattern, roughly on the plane of the plate it struck. Now, take a moment, stand up from your computer and take a stance like you’re holding a rifle. Or pistol.

Doesn’t matter.

Think about what is in the plane of your chest plate.There’s the major arteries in your biceps (remember your first aid class where you found that pressure point to stop the bleeding? It can work the other way too). Also, and maybe even more important, your neck (if you have good shooting form) may be forward of your chest.

That’s scary. Needless to say, the problem of spalling as a BIG problem. This is what a box looks like when you shoot a bare steel plate inside of it.

10622807_10152512483733192_6354866575276086014_n

Enter modern technology. There have been many attempts to mitigate the spalling effect off of a steel plate.

Some of the more basic ones are nothing more than trying to beef up the construction of your plate carrier, in the hopes that it will contain it. I even saw one guy that puts a light gauge metal plate over the top of his steel plate. The theory was that the fragments will lack the energy to pierce the sheet metal, since they will have less energy than the whole round. Seemed to work well enough. But there are a few companies that have moved to a type of plastic coating.

Really more of a really stiff rubber. The coating is strong enough to catch and contain all bullet fragments from multiple hits, effectively dealing with the spalling.

In my opinion.

10347696_10152512483923192_6503701601569538260_n

You can see the bulges where the coating contained the fragments of all the bullets. And so, these are some of the basics of Body Armor, along with some of my reasoning about what I shop for and what I sell.

The 3 things you will always need in an Urban Survival situation

I came across this article about the 3 things you will always need in an urban survival situation and had to share it with you… here’s a brief excerpt of it.

WTSHTF maybe you are prepared for an extended survival scenario away from civilization, but you have to get out of the city first (maybe). In a disaster situation that might not be so easy. If you have these three things in place you will greatly increase your chances.

1.  Get Home Bag (GHB)

get-home-bag

Imagine for a minute that you work downtown in a large city, maybe you ride the subway or take a bus to work everyday. You are in a large office building with many floors, thousands of people, and you are on the fifteen or twentieth story. If a disaster strikes how are you going to get out? I mean literally. If there is an earthquake, or a catastrophic man made event how are you going to get out of your building? How are you going to get down the street? How are you going to get home? Do you want to be one of the people covered in dust wandering around in shock? I sure don’t.

But I have my Bug out Bag you say!

Oh really, where is it? Even if it is in your car it is useless to you at this point. The parking garage is at street level and possibly blocks away. That could mean life or death in this situation and you need to act now.

Even if you could get to your Bug Out Bag, how much good would it do you in this environment? Most people’s B.O.B. is packed for survival in the wilderness. Camping gear, food, clothing, etc.

Get Home Bag contains an entirely different set of tools and serves one purpose: To get you from wherever you are to your Home.

How to Choose an Urban Survival Bag

Your GBH should contain things that are going to get you out of the building like a prybar. Things to help you make it through the aftermath like water and breathing masks. Things you might use to help rescue others like flashlights or radios. Things that will help you on what could be a very long walk home such as food and maybe shoes.

Clearly a GHB is not a Bug Out Bag. Sure they have some overlap, but a GBH can be much smaller, less weight conscious, have more specific tools, and be planned for one purpose. Do you have one cached  in your office or place of work?

 

Want to read the rest of the article?

 

Click here to read the article –> The 3 things you will always need in an Urban Survival situation

8 Simple Steps to Throwing Knives Like a Professional

Step 1) Watch This Video

Knife_throwing_competition

Step 2) Order Your Knives Today and Start Practicing

Where to Order The Knives Mentioned in The Video

Gil Hibben Tanto Thrower Triple Knife Set

Gil Hibben Tanto Thrower Triple Knife Set

Set 3 Ninja Stealth Black Throwing Knives with Nylon Case

Ninja Stealth Black Throwing Knives

How to Throw a Knife Like a Professional

Throwing a knife like a professional is not any different than most other things. You need proper instructions and a lot of practice. The fundamental throwing movement for throwing a knife is not complicated. In the video above you saw how simple it can be.

By getting familiar with the technicalities of the throw and practicing them on a consistent basis you will improve your knife throwing ability. Striking a target with perfect accuracy needs several thousand reiterations and all it takes it practice so keep that in mind.

To throw a knife like a professional you will need to follow some of the instructions as given below:

 

1- At first, you will want to hold the knife on the tip side to be fixed between the thumb and index finger. You will want the tip should pointed towards the palm. You will want to remember to ALWAYS avoid double edged knives because they will scratch you.

2- Next you will want to stand with your shoulders upright and put a foot a step in front of the other one. If you are throwing with your left hand, step your right foot forward and vice versa.

3- Position both your arms at the goal and stick the eyes on the striking point.

4- Lift your throwing arm leisurely straight upward and then move it rearward so that the knife is at the back of your head.

5- Snap the throwing knife forward speedily. As you move your arm down instantly, swing your weight from the back foot to the front foot.

6- Maintain your wrist in a straight line and your shoulder immobile all through the knife throwing motion. Just one arm should be in motion.

7- Liberate the knife when it contacts the discharge point.

8- Trail through. Carry on stirring the throwing arm next to the unchanged path after you liberate the knife. It will assist it link to the target.

A final note, when practicing throwing knives, be sure to use different blades. Once you master one throwing knife, switch to a different one. With enough time, you will be able to pick up a random blade and be able to throw it perfectly without a thought. You will have created muscle memory.

Have you tried throwing knives?

Top 3 Water Purification Water Bottles

We wanted to create a Top 3 water purification water bottles list for you so you can learn a little bit more about the companies behind your favorite water purification bottles.

It can be difficult to choose which is the right for you and we’ve tried these three and have found that these 3 companies are doing great things not only for survivalists like you and me, but are doing their part to make the world a better place.

We simply wanted to put together a short list so you could learn more and make an educated decision on your own on which product you would like to carry with you in your everyday pack and your bug out bags.

Take a few minutes and watch the videos below to make your own decision. We provide you with direct links to buy below the videos to make it easier for you to find each respective product.

1. Clearly Filtered Water Filter


Click Here to Order the Clearly Filtered Water Filter

What makes them different?

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We aren’t satisfied with the options people have when it comes to water. That is why we are committed to coming up with better solutions that will keep you healthy and wont hurt the environment in the process.

The truth is bottled water isn’t good for our bodies, our wallets or for the planet. The faster we get people to realize this the sooner we can start considering better alternatives. Clearly Filtered can help make a positive impact on your health, your finances and our ecosystem. It’s not the only choice, it’s the best choice.

What they’re passionate about:

We are passionate about helping others achieve a healthy lifestyle by ensuring that the water they drink is clean and pure.

Their Mission:

Our mission is to provide clean, safe drinking water to people all over the world.

We believe that clean water is a basic human right and we intend on doing everything that we can to make sure that people don’t go thirsty.

Click Here to Order the Clearly Filtered Water Filter

2. Sawyer Mini Water Filter


Click Here to Order the Sawyer Mini Water Filter

About Sawyer Products

Since 1984, Sawyer Products has offered the best, most technologically advanced solutions for protection against sun, bugs, water & injuries–everything from first aid kits developed for wilderness use to our newest topical insect repellents that use time-released liposome technology.

We’re specifically dedicated to eliminating two of the biggest causes of death in the world: bad water and mosquito bites.

We acquired Coulston Products in 1999, the company that helped develop the use of permethrin, an insect repellent treatment for clothing that provides protection for U.S. troops and outdoor enthusiasts and was adapted for use on mosquito nets now widely used in Africa, saving millions of lives. Sawyer partnered with the World Health Organization (WHO) to conduct the underlying studies that led to the widespread use of repellent on mosquito netting. Sawyer now sells the number one brand of permethrin in retail stores.

We are also the proud developers of point-of-use water filters that filter contaminated water to levels cleaner than U.S. bottled water. Developed using advanced kidney dialysis filtration technology, our hollow fiber membrane filters are the fastest, easiest, and most cost efficient way to deliver clean water anywhere. They are small, portable, don’t require chemicals, a power source, or trained operator for use or maintenance.sawyermini

Click Here to Order the Sawyer Mini Water Filter

3. Lifestraw

Click Here to Order a Lifestraw

How it Works

When you purchase any type of LifeStraw® filter, we use part of the funds to distribute LifeStraw® Community institutional water purifiers to schools in Africa. LifeStraw® Community is specifically designed to deliver clean, safe water to school children by removing waterborne pathogens and dirt commonly found in source water.

In 2013 and 2014 we are distributing LifeStraw® Community purifiers to schools in Kenya, which is one of the top 10 countries in the world with the largest population of people without access to safe, clean water. We chose this area for our first program because only 37% of Kenyan schools have access to safe, clean water within 200 meters of the schools grounds.

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We have over 40 full time employees based in Western Province of Kenya who are managing programs. In 2013 and 2014 your purchases of LifeStraw® filters will be directly impacting schools in Bungoma County, a rural area in Western Province. The large-scale distributions will begin in March 2014 and we will be capturing the program throughout its progress using mobile monitoring systems which will be uploaded into a public GIS database easily viewed by the public.

LifeStrawBaner

Click Here to Order a Lifestraw

 

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Gerber Bear Grylls Ultimate PRO Survival Knife – REVIEW – Best Gerber Survival Knife?

As Promised… Here are Links to the Gear Mentioned in this Video:

 

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Bear Grylls Ultimate PRO Survival Knife:
http://amzn.to/1hHdgUo

Ka-Bar Becker BK-2 Survival Knife:
http://amzn.to/1qGjNAQ

SOG Seal Team Elite – Tactical, Combat, Survival Knife:
http://amzn.to/1hHdJ8R

Gerber LMF II – Survival Knife:
http://amzn.to/1eGETgP

Gerber LHR – Combat, Fighting, Survival Knife:
http://amzn.to/1p8jscV

Schrade Extreme Survival Knife
http://amzn.to/1gzthHJ

Smith and Wesson Homeland Security Knife
http://amzn.to/1t7mnlK

Buck Hoodlum Survival Knife
http://amzn.to/1hTh4No