Top 15 Best Prepper Foods

What happens when the food trucks stop running? What happens when the government cuts the food stamps program? If you live in the city it’s going to be absolute chaos as desperate humans transform into complete animals. Within hours the major grocery stores will be looted and Walmarts everywhere will burn to the ground. WARZONE.

Country folks don’t have it too much better. The animals of the urban environment will strip their city of resources and then come into the country looking for more stores to loot. When the food runs out, you better have a stockpile of goodies locked, cocked, and ready to rock.

Here are some of the best prepper foods you can buy.

1.) Grains

Grains store very well for up to 12 years. When figuring out the best prepper foods to buy, you always want to gauge the shelf life of the foods you are buying. Grains are dense with nutrition, have a long shelf life, and form the staple for many other foods.

  • Barley
  • Oats
  • Quinoa
  • Rye
  • Corn
  • Millet
  • Wheat

2.) Canned Foods

Canned foods are sealed from oxygen and have very long shelf lives. All kinds of foods can be canned. You can even do your own canning with a little practice or simply purchase them from the store.

  • Tuna
  • Beans
  • Soups
  • Chili
  • Tomato Sauce
  • Fruit cocktail
  • Vegetables

3.) Flour

Works just as good!

 

Flour is a key ingredient for making bread and other foods.

  • Wheat flour
  • White flour
  • All purpose flour
  • Bisquick (for those who want a ready made mix)

4.) Rice

Everything the body needs
Everything the body needs

 

Rice is another staple in the preppers food cabinet. Beans and rice form a complete protein and make for a highly nutritious meal. Rice can be stored for up to 10 years.

5.) Coconut Oil

Most cooking oils have a shelf life of roughly 2 years. Coconut oil stores for about 3. Nothing lasts forever as they say so make sure to rotate your prepper food stock every couple years. Keep an up to date list of foods with the date of purchase so you know when it’s time to rotate. If something is about to go bad you can pull it off the shelf early and use it so you do not waste.

6.) Peanut Butter

Another classic staple and great for the kids. Due to the oils, peanut better can be stored unopened for a year. It’s dense with fat and provides the body with a lot of calories. In the post apocalypse, you’ll need all the energy you can get to go out and hunt and do what it takes to survive.

7.) Coffee

Whoever said coffee wasn’t a food! Coffee for many of us is an everyday ritual. Why should we give this up just because the world is crawling with man eating zombies? Coffee, depending on the type, can be stored anywhere from a few months to indefinitely. FYI, Coffee lasts much longer when it’s frozen. Ground coffee lasts 3 – 5 months in the pantry or 1 – 2 years when sealed in a freezer. Whole bean coffee lasts 6 – 9 months in the pantry and 2 – 3 years in the freezer. Instant coffee lasts indefinitely.

 

8.) Ramen Noodles

The classic college dorm room staple makes a guest appearance in the preppers pantry. Ramen is not particularly nutritious but when combined with rice or beans, makes for a tasty meal. The ramen noodles undergo a dehydration process which allows them to be stored indefinitely. Stored in a cool, dry place, ramen noodles will outlast you and your family. One of the cheapest prepper foods out there

9.) Seasonings

The post apocalypse does not have to be a tasteless experience. Generally, whole spices can last up to 5 years while ground spices will make it about 2 or 3.

10.) Powdered milk

Powdered milk can store up to 20 years. It’s almost just as nutritious as normal milk too. Powdered milk does contain oxidized cholesterol due to how it’s processed. You can bypass this harmful form of cholesterol by purchasing non-fat powdered milk. The non-fat powdered milk contains very little cholesterol to begin with so it doesn’t oxidate nearly as much.

11.) Whey Powder

Powdered forms of protein supply the body with easily consumable energy. Whey powder can be mixed with your powdered milk for a quick meal on the go or tasty protein shake. You can get creative and add other ingredients like peanut butter for a calorically dense meal.

12.) Honey

Honey has an indefinite shelf life and can sweeten even the blandest meals. By itself, honey provides raw energy in the form of glucose and sugar. This energy can blast you through a hard days work on the land or through a long day of hunting – not to mention making that oatmeal go down just a little easier!

13.) Vodka

Let the post apocalypse celebration begin!

 

Vodka is included as a best preppers food because it can be used to cook and grill. Of course, vodka can also be drank or bartered with neighbors for items you need. When TSHTF alcohol will be one of those items in very high demand.

14.) Crackers

Crackers are good up to a year. They go great with soups, ramen and many other hot dishes. They can provide a sense of normalcy and variety in a world that has gone down the toilet. Pick up as many boxes as you need for your family.

15.) Chocolates

Last but not least, the chocolate! When things go fully blown and the world crumbles before the eyes of you and your family, you want things to lighten the day. You want sweet things to remind you of the old world, the world you used to know. Chocolate does the trick. Make a communal experience out of eating. Make sweets something the whole family eats together. Eat chocolate and laugh about the old days. Eat chocolate and plan a bright and tasty future.

The Big Bad List of Cheap Survival Gear

cheap-survival-gear

So you want to start building your survival kit eh? You say you want to do it cheap, eh? Finding cheap survival gear is easy when you know where to look. Having bought a lot of gear myself I have a ton of information about where to find the most budget friendly survival gear on the internet.

You see, you can get a lot of survival gear for cheap but certain items are more expensive than others. Knives and multi tools being some of the more expensive pieces. Fear not, I know where to get this stuff super cheap and at a price that fits your budget.

Survival Knives Under $15

The instablade – This knife is being given away FREE as part of a special promotion from my friends at Survival Life (2.95 shipping and handling.) It’s a sharp-as-a-razor blade that folds down to the size of a credit card. You might be thinking if it’s free, it must be a piece of garbage. In fact, this statement couldn’t be further from the truth. The entire blade is sturdy as hell. I don’t have any doubts about this knifes ability to function in a fully blown SHTF situation. It’s an extremely covert way to carry a quality blade right in your wallet. It looks exactly like a credit card when folded up, and with a little practice it transforms into a formidable blade with a few flicks of the wrist. Shank worthy indeed.

instablade

TAC FORCE TACTICAL – This knife is a spring assisted blade (aka switch blade) with serious bite. When you’re talking about budget survival knives this knife can’t help but enter the conversation. You can pick one up for less than $10 dollars on Amazon. Keep in mind this blade is possibly illegal depending on how your state handles switch blades. If you do purchase it, don’t be flashing it around in public. Keep it hidden and take it out only during the most fully blown SHTF situations.

tac-force-survival-knife

Survivor HK – A dirt cheap combo knife that includes two other essential survival tools: Along with a half way decent blade, the knife handle is wrapped with 20 feet of usable nylon cordage. Sure, it’s not paracord but it does the job. The blade itself comes pretty dull out of the box so make sure to take a good grinding stone to the edge. It’s a blade that looks like it came out of a cracker jack box but with a little work it can turn into a formidable survival knife. For less than $10 bucks you can’t be complaining.

cheap-survival-knife

Multi Tools Under $15

EDT Tool – Another quality freebie from Survival Life. How long will they keep these deals going? I have no idea but I can’t imagine they can just give these away for free forever. The EDT Tool is a Leatherman style multi tool with an added carabiner to hook into a key ring, belt loop, or patch of Molle on your bug out bag. It’s heavy, sturdy, and well made. How’s that for cheap survival gear?

free-edt-multi-tool

Stanley multi tool – One of the best multi-tools I’ve experienced for well under the cost of a Leatherman. Leatherman is known for dominating the multi-tool industry but the Stanley is a formidable competitor. It has everything you expect to find on a multi-tool and comes extremely well built. The pliers on this bad boy are especially powerful and dig deep into whatever you need to get a bite on. You can pick one up for about $12 bucks.

Fire Under $10

Ferrocerium rod – the bulletproof method of generating sparks even in wet weather. The ferro rod gets the nod of approval from even the most hardcore survivalists. BICS get wet. Matches get wet. The fact is, ferro rods remain a tried and true way to get a fire started even when all other methods have failed. The rods themselves are cheap and you can use the spine of your knife as a striker.

BIC lighters – BIC lighters are undoubtedly the highest quality lighters you can purchase. They’re relatively cheap and it’s the easiest method of fires tarting. Sure, a ferro rod is more reliable but it’s much easier to get a fire going with flames than sparks. You can pick these up at your local liquor store or buy them in packs online.

Waterproof matches – Waterproof matches round out your fire kit in an effective way. High quality waterproof matches are very inexpensive and a critical part of your fire kit.

Alcohol pads – The latest survival hack making fire starting an extremely easy (and cheap) task. Simply ignite a single alcohol pad under your bundle of tinder and watch as a blaze of glory unfolds right before your eyes. Plus, they double as first aid supplies. Gear with multiple uses is always a win. Pick up a box on the cheap and throw a few in your bug out bag.

Water Under $20

Purification tablets – the most bang for your buck when it comes to purifying dubious water sources. Water filters can run upwards of $100 dollars but you can pick tablets up for $6 dollars. They make the water taste like chemicals but they do the job.

Life Straw – Extremely budget friendly method of purifying water. Dip the straw into a dubious source of water and drink deeply. The built in filter will filter out harmful bacteria and pathogens from any creek, pond, or lake.

Stainless steel thermos – Another cheap way to purify water is to boil it. With a stainless steel mug you can boil water and store it for later. You can can also cook your food too. Even if you plan on purifying water with tablets, you’re gonna need something to store the water.

Shelter Under $10

Tarp – Depending on where you are, the elements can kill you faster than anything else. A tarp is an inexpensive piece of gear to keep you dry and sheltered from the weather. Tarps can be rigged in a number of configurations depending on the scenario. Tents are good choices but they are heavy and not budget friendly. If you have to bug out, do you really want to be toting around all the weight of a tent? Probably not. Do yourself a favor and snatch one up for $7 bucks.

Paracord – You’ll need something to rig your shelter with. Paracord has a number of uses and it’s too cheap and light to pass up. Paracord can be used to hoist food in the air (bear bag), make boot laces, rig shelters, haul a load up a mountain pass, and a ton of other things. You can even make 50lb test fishing line out of the inner strands. Truly versatile indeed!

Emergency blanket – the tried and true method of staying warm in even the coldest survival situations. The emergency blanket (AKA the space blanket) works by reflecting your bodies heat back to you.  Rig up your tarp and wrap yourself nice and tight with the space blanket and you’re good to go. Is it the most comfortable setup? No, but you’ll make it through the night. This is survival, not a 5 star stay at the Ritz!

Other budget friendly survival items

Trash bags – the big black ones. You probably have these under you kitchen sink or in your garage. They can be  used to collect water, waterproof your gear, create shelter, or fashioned into a parka. Trash bags are super light and can stuff into even he most fully loaded bug out bag.

Flashlight – helpful when it gets dark but you still have stuff to do. I prefer headlamps but cheap flashlights can be had for pennies on the dollar. I’ve got cheap flashlights from years back that still throw a decent beam.

Bleach – not the whole jug! Put a little bit in small eye dropper for water purification purposes. A couple drops of bleach can purify an entire gallon of water. Bleach is something you probably have around the house and won’t have to spend money on.

Pencil sharpener – this useful little tool can create fine wood shavings from sticks found in the wild. Even in wet weather the inner core of the sticks will be dry and will make starting a fire very simple.

pencil-sharpener-survival-gear
Great way to make fire tinder out in the wild

 

Duct tape – not the whole role! Take a few rounds of tape and wrap around your BIC lighter. Duct tape proves to be invaluable stuff when it comes to repairing gear and mending holes. As they say, there isn’t much that can’t be fixed up with duct tape.

Magnifying glass – Method of last resort to get a fire going. Rays from the sun can be focused into a beam of light to catch small tinder on fire. Light enough to throw one in your pack and not worry.

Socks – Extra socks will do wonders for your feet and your morale. Your feet are your primary asset in a fully blown SHTF situation. If they get wet you’re in for a miserable experience.

Sillcock key – Probably the most awesome urban survival hack I’ve came across. A sillcock key taps straight in to the commercial water faucets you see on the sides of big buildings. These are special faucets and require a key to access the water. The thing is, the key isn’t all that special and anybody can pick one up on Amazon for cheap. Even if the power goes out in the entire city there will be enough water pressure left in the pipes to fill your cup many times over.

Other cheap survival gear

You see, getting survival gear doesn’t have to be an expensive shopping spree. With less than $100 bucks you can create a bug out bag that will blast straight through a fully blown SHTF situation. If you’re really pressed for cash you can order things one at a time until you have all the survival tools you need.

There is one thing I left off the list – the bug out bag, and only because they can get expensive. However, it’s wise to have a quality B.O.B. in case things go fully blown and you have to bug out. When you got some extra bucks read my post on the 12 best tactical backpacks.

Did I miss anything? Let me know in the comments below.

 

Best SHTF Knife For Ultimate Survival

When things go fully blown it’s crucial to have a knife that’s gonna stand up to any conditions. The best SHTF knife will be one you can defend yourself with. A competent SHTF knife will not bust on you when you go to do something important. Your knife is your closest survival companion. It’s important to choose a blade that can handle anything you throw at it.

Think about it. When they stop the food stamps, when the government refuses to offer any more hand outs, the monkeys will riot in the streets. Do you really want a knife that’s so cheap nobody takes you seriously in the streets? Of course not. Do you want a knife that’s going to break when you go to baton wood or cut cordage? No.

There are a number of characteristics you need to look for in a full blown SHTF knife:

  • Fixed blade
  • Full tang
  • Skull crusher pommel
  • 4″+ blade length
  • Comfortable handle
  • Razor sharp blade material

Owning a fixed blade knife is of critical importance. A folding knife is convenient but busts a lot easier due to a weakened point on the blade (the part that folds.) A busted knife is of no use to you. If the knife you own must last, you MUST go for a knife with a fixed blade.

Full tang is another crucial aspect of the knife. The tang is a continuation of the blade that runs into the handle. Half tangs run half the length of the handle while full tangs run the total length. A full tang serves to bolster the strength of both the knife and the handle. Plus, if the handle cracks off you still have a usable blade with a full tang knife. Simply wrap a bit of paracord around the tang and you’re good to go.

tang
A full tang blade runs the length of the handle

 

What about size? Don’t be afraid to get a knife with a little length. 4 inches + is a good starting point and I find a knife between 5 and 6 inches to be perfect. Too short of a blade and the knife is worthless. Too long and the knife becomes a cumbersome piece of steel.

You got to strike the right balance between length and usability.

The Best SHTF Knife

Let’s talk knives. Out of all the knives on the market, there is one knife that stands out against the hundreds of wannabes. – The ESEE 5. The ESEE-5 was designed as a downed pilots survival knife. The pommel (butt end of the knife) is engineered so a pilot can bust out the window on a downed chopper or aircraft. Everything about the knife is specifically there to smash you out and through a fully blown SHTF situation.

The ESEE-5 SHTF Knife in FULL Glory

 

The blade is fixed, the tang is full, the knife is sharp as a razor. The blade material in question is the time tested 1095 carbon steel. This stuff is sharp, and I’ll tell you one thing – you wouldn’t want to be on the business end of this blade.

Is the knife more expensive than other knives? Yes. Do budget survival knives even come close to the quality of the ESEE 5? No. There’s a reason why those knives are $20 dollars. They’re going to bust the second you go to use them for anything useful.

I’ve always said, your knife and bug out bag are two pieces of SHTF gear you do not want to cheap out on. ESEE knives are extremely solid in every way.

Budget version of the ESEE 5?

What if I told you about a knife that’s a damn near replica of the ESEE 5 but way cheaper? I’m speaking specifically of the legendary RAT 5. The RAT 5 features the same 1095 carbon steel and design as the ESEE 5 but comes in at a significant cost difference. Why is this? Nobody has quite pinned down the answer to that question. Myths suggest the RAT uses inferior metals but field reports suggest the RAT 5 holds up just as well as the ESEE in the bush.

rat-5-knife
The RAT 5 – budget friendly version of the ESEE 5. Half the price!

 

Me personally? I’m a sucker for brand name stuff. But having used both knives I can tell you they are very similar in overall build and quality.

So, if you’re in a pinch for money, definitely check out the other reviews on the RAT 5.

Final thoughts

The most hardcore survivalists agree, it really comes down to the ESEE or RAT 5. Both blades are extremely well equipped and stand up to the harsh conditions of a fully blown survival situation. Strapped for cash? Go for the RAT. But if you got the cheddar you’d be doing yourself a big solid by going with the ESEE.

 

How To Make a WTSHTF Bag

Let me ask you a question – do you have everything you need to survive a full blown SHTF situation? Do you have a WTSHTF bag with everything you need to blow through even the hairiest catastrophes? I’ll tell you this – when the food trucks stop running, when the SNAP benefits come to a full halt, the animals will take to the streets in mass hoards. Look up videos of the L.A. Riots. Look up videos of the Ferguson riots. These are small examples of what would happen on a MASS scale if we are deprived of basic goods like food, running water etc.

Putting together a WTSHTF bag is the start of becoming ready for a full blown SHTF situation. With a bug out bag you will have everything you need to get the hell out of dodge and into a safe environment.

WTSHTF Bag Checklist

An overloaded wtshtf bag
An overloaded wtshtf bag

 

In it you should stock 72 hours worth of food. That’s 3 days worth of food until normalcy is restored or you reach an alternate location. Think about foods that won’t spoil: Clif bars, snickers, packaged tunas, fruits, nuts etc. High calorie foods to get you through a fully blown SHTF situation.

Water. You’re gonna need some water. Since water is heavy, I recommend picking up a water filter and securing your water from alternative sources. With a water filter you now have access to sources of water you couldn’t normally drink. Even in major citys there are ponds and bodies of water you can source water from.

With a sillcock key you can tap in to the water supply from local commercial buildings. Fill up your stainless steel drinking mug and drink deeply.

Knife. What happens if you need to shank your way through a fully blown situation? A knife is the most important piece of gear in your WTSHTF bag. It’s not just for self defense either. With a knife you can process firewood, cut cordage, bust glass windows (butt end of the knife) and lots of other survival related tasks. Knives can be expensive or they can be cheap.

I’ve reviewed many knives on this site and also have a post on budget survival knives if you’re looking for something decent under $20 bucks. Snatch one up for cheap and throw it straight into your B.O.B. Crack deep. Shank wide.

Illumination. When the sun goes down the city will turn into a full blown real-life planet of the apes. Darkness will descend and the monkeys will swing from the rafters. A flashlight or a headlamp will keep your path lit even in total darkness. Light is an essential piece of gear when the grid goes down. No power means you’ll have to find portable methods of lighting your surrounding area.

If your only option is to move at night, blast through with a headlamp and some spare batteries. Many survivalists go for a tactical flashlight which has a blinding beam of light and a serrated rim around the edge. This is useful for self defense. When you get attacked, you hit em right in the face with a beam of light and then come straight in for the skull cracker. They will think twice about going monkey mode the next time.

Ninja wrap, also known as a shemag, is a useful article of clothing you can use for many purposes. When the dust is relentless, if the air is toxic, you can use the shemag to wrap your face. Wrap your neck at night to stay warm. Use it as a tourniquet. Use it as a way to carry wood to and from camp. It’s a light and cheap piece of gear that might come in very handy.

Tarp. A tarp is a truly versatile piece of gear. Use it to rig up a solid shelter with a bit of paracord. A tarp is much lighter than a tent. Remember, you want to pack as light as possible. Mobility is your friend and you can’t do much walking if you’re loaded down under the weight of a WTSHTF bag that’s too heavy.

Fire. BIC lighters, waterproof matches and a ferrocerium rod will ensure you have redundant ways of making fire. A ferrocerium rod and striker is included with the Bear Grylls survival knife. The knife is actually quite good and affordable considering his reputation among survivalists. Check out my full review of his knife.

Trash bags. Yes indeed, the humble trash bag. Versatile indeed in times of need. Use the trash bag to collect water, waterproof your gear,  or stuff it full of leaves for an insulating ground layer. They also make fashionable parkas when it’s raining cats and dogs.

Best WTSHTF Backpack

shtf-backpack-rush-72
The 5.11 Rush 72 Hour Tactical Pack

 

You’re going to need something to throw all this stuff into. Perhaps you have something around the house, perhaps you want to purchase something that isn’t going to rip to shreds when exposed to a fully blown SHTF situation. Most hardcore survivalists recommend a tactical backpack. These are military spec backpacks and extremely durable.

Some are camouflaged while others appear to be more civilian. The question is – are you going full on incognito mode or does looking like you are military not bother you? Read up on going grey man. 

My personal recommendation is always the RUSH 5.11 72 hour backpack. It’s a civilian style backpack with full blown military specs. Extremely durable in every aspect. The whole pack looks like it was made for serious urban ops. There’s no doubt in can hold all the gear on this list and smash through even the hairiest SHTF survival situations.

Final thoughts

If you secure everything on this list you will have a WTSHTF bag to serve you well in a fully blown SHTF situation. Apart from the gear you have, your survival is determined by your knowledge of how to survive. For this I recommend you take a look at a few of the popular survival books out there. These books offer invaluable knowledge you can use to blow straight through any survival situation. They use laymans terms to set you on the right path and instill the core knowledge of what it takes to make it through even the worst of the worst.

Always be preparing. Always be learning!

Thanks for reading.

 

 

 

 

 

Ontario Rat 5 Knife Review

rat-5-knife

Looking for a solid survival knife you can take into the bush? Looking for a full blown SHTF knife you can crush skulls with? The Ontario Rat 5 delivers the goods. I like this knife for a lot of reasons. First, the blade is the perfect length to perform all the critical tasks required of you out in the buck wild. You see, if a blade is too short you can’t properly baton wood. Too long and smaller tasks like skinning and carving become a cumbersome endeavor. The Rat 5 strikes a perfect balance between these two extremes.

Let’s crack STRAIGHT into the specifications.

Critical SPECS

Blade TypeFixed
Blade Length5.0 inches
Total Length10.5 inches
Blade Thickness0.188 inches
Blade Material1095 steel / Full Flat Taper / Drop point
Weight11.5 oz
TangFull
Sheath IncludedNo

The blade

rat-5-knife-blade

The blade on the RAT 5 is constructed out of time-tested 1095 steel. This type of steel holds a wicket edge. Be careful pulling this thing out of the box…it’s sharp as a razor and you can easily slice deep into flesh. You may notice I say this about ALL knives that use the 1095 carbon. The steel is samurai sword level sharp. I mentioned the blade is the perfect length. At 5 inches it can do a lot of things very well. I baton the daylights out of wood with the RAT 5 all day long with zero problems…I then turn around to slice straight into a nice summer sausage with zero problems. The blade really is perfect in every way.

A lot of knives go balls to the wall. Take the BK7 for instance. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a great knife but certainly not a knife you can do a lot of things well with. The RAT 5 does a lot of things very well.

the handle

rat-5-knife-handle

Once again we observe RAT using the TIME TESTED canvas micarta handle. What I love about RAT is they have found something that works and they’re consistently rolling out knives that deliver the best experience. Too many companies attempt to get fancy with their knives. I don’t need or want a knife made out of some dull steel and shaped to look like a dragons tail. I have a post on budget survival knives if that’s what you want. Give me the best. GIVE ME THE RAT 5.

On a side note, do you have what it takes to shank your way through a fully blown SHTF situation? Do you know where all the critical organs are located on the human body? Did you know you’re only 5 inches away from penetrating any major organ? Coincidence that the RAT 5 blade is 5 inches long? I don’t know. I will tell you this – I’m not sure if I could shank a man if it came down to it.

I would much rather CRACK EM with the pommel. The butt end of the handle on the RAT 5 features a skull busting glass breaker. You can use this to crack your way out of a wrecked car or CRACK your way through an attacker who wants your bug out bag. Crack em hard with the pommel and then say “not today BUCK-O, not today.” Ultimate self defense.

Performance

Up to this point I’ve basically given you a load of bullshit. Who cares about one mans opinion about the RAT 5? Specs don’t matter unless they have ACTION to back them up. Most people are TALK TALK TALK. You want to know if this knife has the balls to deliver results. You want to know if it can slice deep into summer sausage. You want to know if you can beat the crap out of this thing and whether or not the RAT 5 will come back for more.

Let’s take the RAT 5 into it’s natural habitat…the bush.

Making feathersticks – I’m telling you, it barely took any pressure at all for this blade to get a good bite into the wood and smooth down for a nice nest of feathersticks. Living TRUE to the RAT, this thing creates a NEST of feathersticks out of even the hardest woods. As you know, feathersticks are an essential camp task and make getting a fire going very easy. Not surprisingly, the RAT 5 gets 5 stars out of 5 in this area.

rat-5-feathersticks

Batoning wood – I’ll tell you right now, I came down hard over this knife with CRUEL INTENTIONS. My goal was to see if I could bend the blade using as much force as possible. I knew the knife was weighty. I knew the knife was quality. I didn’t, however, know if the spine of the blade would be able to withstand the rage I was about bring down upon it. I’ll tell you this – I was exhausted well before the RAT 5 showed any signs of slowing down. There I was, completely tuckered out in the middle of the bush, laying down on my back to rest. I look over to see the RAT 5  sliced deep into a log. It was as if the RAT was trying to say something. Was I hallucinating? It was like the RAT was saying “I WIN.”

RAT-5-batoning-wood

That will do RAT, that will do.

Final thoughts

Is the RAT 5 worthy of your belt? If my experience tells me anything I would say this is the wrong question. The question is, are YOU worthy to carry the RAT 5? Let it be known – this is the Excalibur – masterfully crafted, a force of steel to be reckoned with and used with extreme caution. A powerful blade that will see you through even the most fully blown SHTF survival situation.

Snatch up the RAT 5 today.

 

 

 

The 8 Types of Preppers

If you spend any amount of time learning about survival and prepping you will inevitably come across very interesting characters in the community. Prepping and survival causes all kinds of people and personalites to come out of the woodworks. By default, preppers can be very reserved in the real world – often times concealing their moves and motives and of course, concealing their preps. On the internet however, it’s a different story. Each type of prepper becomes very vocal about their preps and they love to share and exchange ideas.

In this post I examine the different types of preppers you come across in the wild (aka internet.)

1.) The tin foil hat prepper

Perhaps the most comical prepper to observe. This type of prepper loves to talk about conspiracies and can be seen engaging in heated debates about UFO’s, who shot JFK, and chem trails. This prepper preps because he is convinced that the world is one giant conspiracy that can only end in destruction, and dammit, he’s gonna be ready. At the core, the tin foil hat prepper believes he has inside knowledge of the “doings” of big brother and that this knowledge will see him through to ultimate survival. Is the tin foil hat prepper justified in his beliefs? I am not here to judge!

2.) The widget collector

This type of prepper doesn’t really care how the world is going to end. All he cares about is collecting enough widgets so he is prepared when it happens. He has a widget for this. He has a widget for that. The widget collector isn’t so much concerned with survival, but rather how much gear he can accumulate. The widget collector is essentially a hoarder. His house is strewn with strange pieces of survival gear and there is a widget for everything. You can rest assured this prepper will buy up the latest survival trinket at a moments notice. Interestingly enough, the widget collector doesn’t seem to own anything that would be of actual use in a survival situation. Oh the irony!

3.) The Holier than thou prepper

This prepper is “above” the rest. He thinks everyone but himself is a complete lunatic. His words ooze of superiority and he is quick to denounce your ideas. This prepper has it all figured out, at least so he thinks. He will never ask questions even though he knows he should. This would destroy peoples impression of him. He thinks he is an authority in survival but deep down he lacks the humbleness to ask questions and learn about prepping on a deep level.

4.) The doomsday prepper

This type of prepper is either truly insane or truly genius. Their entire life is dedicated to the prep. On any given day you can see this prepper scanning the internet for the latest bomb shelter blueprints and then later, he’s on his tractor putting the plan into the action. The doomsday prepper is a hardcore prepper through and through. Forget about having a normal conversation with this guy – he’s far too absorbed into surviving the coming fallout to discuss anything else!

5.) The rational prepper

This prepper has a good head on his shoulders. He doesn’t believe in conspiracies and he doesn’t necessarily believe the world is going to end. But he’s going to prep just in case. He’s an all american boy – god fearing and raised on meat and potatoes. His dad instilled a strong sense of self reliance and work ethic in him at a young age. This man will procure the proper provisions but won’t spend his life worrying about TEOTWAWKI. In fact, he spends so little time researching prepping to even know what these crazy acronyms stand for! For him, there is life to live and pie to eat. Live and let live and let the dice fall where they may.

6.) The undercover prepper

This is usually a woman who has no idea her canning and food dehydration hobby is preparing her family for the end times. She hums along canning this, canning that, completely oblivious that one day all this food is going to come in mighty handy. In fact, she hasn’t the slightest clue what prepping is. If you told her about prepping she might brush you off as a crazy and continue picking berries of all types. She will say things like “prepping? Is that like letting the stove warm up before I cook my apple fritters?” She will then proceed to her self cultivated vegetable garden to pick the days lot.

7.) The militia man

This mans answer to prepping is guns, guns, and more guns. Oh yeah, and don’t forget the ammo! He has guns of all types and generally spends most of his time collecting guns and shooting them. This man is a maniac when it comes to weapons. He uses prepping as a way to disguise his fetish for weapons and ammo. However, he is a good man to get on terms with. If shit does hit the fan he can provide you with the proper weaponry. Don’t expect him to have stockpiled any food however!

8.) The sideline prepper

The last prepper isn’t really a prepper at all. They watch from the sidelines. They read all the important information but never take action to get their preps in order. They are the proverbial mental masturbator – looking at what everyone else is doing but never doing anything for themselves. They are more interested in the fantasy of the prep rather than the prep itself. This type of person never follows through with anything and lives in a world of ideas rather than actions.

Conclusion

So, which one are you?

Where do you fall into place? Did I miss anything? Let me know in the comments below!

 

Best Survival Radios For Full Blown SHTF

Imagine, ISIS has infiltrated your immediate environment. They’ve taken out critical COMMS systems like all of the cell towers. You pick up your phone to make a call…and nothing. Nothing is going out and nothing is coming in. How do you find out what is going on when the cell towers go down? How will you get immediate information about the surrounding disaster? This information is crucial to your survival.

What you need is a survival radio. A radio operates in a much different way than cell phones and offers higher reliability in the event of catastrophic disaster. Cell phones rely on cell towers in order to send and transmit signals. If these cell towers get knocked out or lose power, you are S.O.L. Radios on the other hand use different modes of communication and are much more reliable during times of instability.

Let’s crack in to the best survival radios you can get for a fully blown SHTF situation

Two Way Walkies

You might remember messing around with these as a kid or using a pair for work. Two-way walkies communicate directly and the signal is instantaneous. They feature PTT (push-to-talk) technology which allows for instant and rapid communications. Two way radios have come a long way and now offer communications at much greater distances. This two-way radio has a total communication distance of 37 miles. This is a cheap way to ensure you have critical communications with local family and loved ones even in the event of a disaster. You are only seconds away from critical COMMS.

Hand Cranked Emergency Radio

A hand cranked emergency radio is an inexpensive way to tap into crucial survival communications. An emergency survival radio can listen in on emergency radio frequencies and relay important information about what’s going on around you. This information will prove to be crucial to your survival. I always go for the hand cranked radio types. I don’t like being dependent on batteries although I always have them around. Many of them even come fully loaded with a flashlight and a strong antennae. These types of survival radios are receivers only – meaning you cannot communicate using them.

HAM radios

Now we’re getting into the big boy COMMS. Ham radios operate on a much wider set of frequencies and can reach other ham radio operators across the world. The equipment is truly powerful – so powerful you actually need a license to operate. You can’t just be tapping into air traffic control frequencies. The high barrier to entry comes at a significant advantage however – you can basically listen in and communicate on many different frequencies. While this remains illegal in many normal cases, in a fully blown SHTF situation you can be sure the FCC isn’t going to be worried about tracking down offenders. There are a number of entry level radios you can get started with (see below.)

Best Survival Radios

Now that you have a good idea about the different technologies, let’s crack straight into some products. These survival radios are widely regarded as being the best radios out there.

Cobra CXT 1035R – This pair of two-ways offers insane distance – up to 37 miles. Very easy to use and operate unlike some of the more advanced survival radios. It even floats in the water! Great for the outdoors and definitely a big advantage if you have to bug out. You can grab your bug out bag and start coordinating with everybody instantly and directly. Get a set for everyone in your family.

two-way-survival-radio

American Red Cross Hand Cranked Radio – This survival radio is the standard for portable and rechargable radio technology. It’s licensed and widely used by the American Red Cross themselves. It features an AM/FM frequency band, an LED flashlight, and a rechargeable USB port for your smart phone and other electronics. A built in AUX port allows you to plug in your Ipod or smartphone to play music. It takes batteries which can be recharged by the hand crank. A real quality radio you should have on hand at all times. Oh yeah, it also has built in electronics to access the NOAA emergency weather radio station. Check out this resource for a listing of local frequencies in your area.

red-cross-survival-radio

Baofeng UV-5R Two Way HAM Radio – The absolute STANDARD for the entry level HAM radio operator. If you’re just getting into HAM radio this is the radio to get. And the thing is, even if you don’t have your HAM license you can still buy this legally. If you make sure to stick within the frequencies you’re allowed to transmit on you’re good to go. A pair of Baofengs can be used as two very powerful two-way radios in and of themselves. There is no license required to use them as a pair of powerful walkies. And here’s the kicker, they’re even cheaper than a pair of normal two-ways! Don’t ask me how that works.

baofeng-ham-survival-radio

Kaito Voyager-500

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Perhaps the best emergency receiving radio is the Kaito Voyager KA500. This radio comes fully equipped with all the NOAA channels and can tap into the AM/FM and shortwave channels too. The Kaito 500 has 5 different methods of charging itself. You can use the hand crank, USB, AC, Batteries, or solar. A truly versatile radio and one well deserving of a full review. You can read my full review of the Kaito 500 here.

Final thoughts

A survival radio is an invaluable piece of equipment especially when TSHTF. I urge you to explore the options of becoming a HAM radio operator. If shit truly hits the fan, people who know how to operate radio will be in high demand. On top of that, it’s a fun hobby to get into and there’s a massive community around HAM radio. At the bare minimum, snatch a couple of two-ways and an emergency radio and you’re good to go.

7 Survival Tips From The Homeless

Look around your city. What do you see? If you open your eyes a lot of the people around are homeless. Some of them chose the lifestyle while others have been forced into the situation. Either way, they have a lot to teach us about surviving harsh conditions. They have tricks and strategies up their sleeve to survive. Here are 7 tips from the homeless you can use to survive any survival situation.

Your backpack is your most prized possession

Look at the homeless. One thing you’ll notice is they all have backpacks, or something to hold all of their gear. Many of them actually have nice backpacks. A lot of them are using the military style tactical backpacks easily found at military surplus stores. Others have spent the money on nice backpackers packs. They are weathered but durable. The homeless know that it isn’t a good idea to cheap out on a backpack. It’s only a matter of time before zippers bust and seams come apart. Invest in a good backpack for all of your gear.

Essential reading: Best tactical backpacks for your survival gear

Trash bags are your friend

garbage-bags
Garbage bags – More useful than you think

 

Trash bags are versatile pieces of gear. The homeless use trash bags as make shift parkas or as a way to waterproof their gear. You will often see them wearing trash bags in the rain or wrapping up their backpacks. Industrial sized black trash bags can even be used to create a make shift shelter in a snap. Pack a few of them in your backpack. They are extremely light and very useful!

Cardboard is a close ally

Have you ever slept on the raw ground outside in the middle of winter? It’s not a fun experience. Even in the summer time the ground will sap you of all your warmth. The best way to keep yourself warm is to create an insulation layer between you and the ground. There’s a reason why the homeless can always be seen sleeping on cardboard. The cardboard creates a layer to keep you warm at night. You can easily find cardboard in the recycling dumpsters behind retail stores and restaurants.

Dog is a mans best friend

You can always see the homeless person with their dog. A dog will alert you to anybody approaching your camp. Especially while you are sleeping, it’s important to know when somebody is coming up on you. A dog can protect you and let you know when trouble is abound. Beyond protection, a dog will keep you company during those lonely apocalyptic days and nights. Many homeless people do not have friends or people they can trust. A dog keeps them company and is their closest companion. Scientific studies prove time and time again that dogs contribute to the mental health of the lonely.

Avoid populated shelters

You will often see homeless in remote areas if you do a little exploring around your city. Even though there are shelters, the smart ones never go there. They are a breeding ground for mental illness and deranged folks who have no problems stealing your stuff and causing you problems. When it comes time to find a camp, try to find a spot that is out of the way. This will serve you well and give you peace of mind knowing you are safe at night. A remote camp with your dog is one of the best survival combos out there.

Good boots are essential

You will often see homeless people wearing rags and cheap clothes. If you look at their feet, however, you will see many of them wearing top quality waterproof boots. They know their feet are a very valuable asset. If they get wet or injured they will have a hard time surviving. I have worn a pair of these for well over a year now. They have held up nicely and are still waterproof to this day. I always opt for a Goretex lining but they make other waterproof material just as effective. Whatever you do, always make sure you have a good pair of boots!

Survival mindset

Look into the eyes of the homeless. There you will see the eyes of a survivor. Perhaps they weren’t confident in their abilities at first. But overtime they learned what it took to survive. They learned what they needed to do to survive in this environment. They have the mindset of the survivor. It is most crucial to extract any kind of victim mentality from your psyche. If you think like a victim you will become a victim.

At the root of anybody who has survived anything is the survivor mindset. Cultivate this mindset and you will be able to pass through any tribulation – any survival scenario. And here’s the thing. If you don’t think you have what it takes to survive you’re wrong. You are here because your ancestors at one point in time were able to survive. You are here because you come from a long line of survivors.

Don’t forget that.

~until next time~

 

 

 

 

Top 5 Budget Survival Knives

If you’ve done any research on survival you know the knife is the most important piece of gear in your kit. The knife is versatile enough to cut cordage, baton wood, and protect you from attackers. But if you’ve looked at the knives many people recommend, you might find yourself saying one thing – “damn, these are expensive!”

And you’re right. The best of anything is going to cost you a pretty penny. But don’t worry, there are actually some quality blades you can get for relatively cheap. Read on for a list of my favorite budget survival knives.

US Marine Core Military Knife

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Price: $11.76

Licensed by the military and used throughout the USMC training course. This is a beastly looking blade. In fact, I’m not even sure if this is legal in all states. It’s a weighty knife, not a cheapo blade by any means. The blade itself is sharp as hell and locks securely into place. I have no doubts that in the right hands, one could easily Rambo their way out of any full blown SHTF situation. If you’re looking for a budget survival knife you got to check this one out for sure.

TAC-FORCE Black Sheriff LED

cheap-survival-knife-2

Price: $10.90

Shank your way through the dark with a no-nonsense survival knife made for CRITICAL OPS. The LED on this bad boy is surprisingly bright and effective. The blade is also something you don’t want to handle unless you know what you’re doing – it’s sharp as razor wire and has a mean bite indeed. This the black sheriff and it’s here to add a little justice to your survival kit. The price of this blade will satisfy even the most frugal meiser.

RAMBO Tactical Hunting Knife

inexpensive-survival-knife-3

Price: $12.99

Can you imagine smashing through a full blown SHTF situation with a knife that looks like this? I’ll tell you right now, nobody is going to mess with you. This blade is big and bad, and stands up to the stressors of even the most hairest survival situations. Baton full size logs and then turn around to shank your way through a hoard of ISIS terrorists. Serious stuff.

The Survivor HK

cheap-survival-knife

Price: $7.49

A serious survival knife that brings loads of value to the table. It’s a full on fixed blade survival knife with paracord and a ferrocerium rod included. What more could you ask for in a survival knife? At less than $10 bucks, you would have to have been dropped on your head not to see the value in this. This is a great bargain buy because of all the included gear. Don’t pass up on this deal.

Tac-Force TS-705

tac-force-survival-knife

Price: $9.04

Another blade that is possibly illegal depending on your state (don’t tell daddy.) This is a “spring assisted” blade, otherwise known as a switch blade. I like this knife because you can keep it in your pocket unlike a fixed blade. At a moments notice you can bust this thing out and switch the blade. If you things get hairy this is a great knife to have on hand. It also has a built in bottle opener so you can crack open a brewski after a long day on the apocalyptic plains of DOOM.

Conclusion

Well there you have it. All of these blades are under $15 dollars. It really doesn’t get any more budget than this. If you’re still looking for something cheaper I suggest spending the money on a psychologist who can diagnose why you’re always trying to cheap out on stuff. If you could kick your coffee addiction for even a month you would have enough cash for a full blown bug out bag or survival kit. Anyways…

Thanks for reading!

 

Budget Survival Kit V1.0

budget-survival-kit

Looking for a budget friendly way to build a survival kit? Procuring all of the essential survival gear does not have to be expensive. In fact, you can get all the basic stuff for well under $100 dollars. A lot of the important stuff you need is really inexpensive and will serve you well in a full blown survival situation. Although the tactical backpack is most expensive, most people have something laying around they can use. It is a good idea to keep all this gear in a backpack in case you need to bug out.

Let’s crack straight into the budget survival kit.

Paracord – This stuff is cheap and extremely useful. What can you use paracord for? I can go on for days about the practical uses of a good length of paracord. Rig up a shelter, tie off a load, make shift handcuffs, dragging loads up steep hills etc. If you need any further convincing I suggest watching the movie Boondock saints. They answer the question quite nicely.

Black trash bags – Speaking of budget, I know of nothing cheaper yet more useful than the trash bag. They are the unsung heros of the city. They are waterproof parkas, collectors of water, body bags, insulators, and much more. Not to mention they are the lightest thing in your pack. You can load your pack down with hundreds of them and barely feel the weight. You probably already have some in your garage.

BIC lighters – what are these, like .50 cents at the liquor store? You can buy a whole box of them and still have plenty of funds left over. Use these to start a fire in the coldest conditions. On the highest mountain top you can rest soundly, knowing you have a roaring fire ablaze to keep you warm.

Ferrocerium rod – cheap and effective. It’s a backup to your BIC lighters. The thing about ferro rods is they strike even when wet. If your matches or lighter gets wet you are hosed (no pun intended.)

Budget survival knife – This will be the most expensive part of the budget survival kit but the knife cannot be overlooked. It’s the most important piece of equipment you own. If you don’t have a knife you don’t have a survival kit. Take a look at my review of the Bear Grylls survival knife. It’s actually a solid knife despite his reputation as only being an entertainer. And as a bonus, it comes with a ferrocerium rod. Kill two birds with one stone.

Water container – preferably stainless steel. If you come across any dubious water sources you can boil the water so it’s drinkable.

3 days of food – 3 days worth of food and water. Water is extremely cheap. For food you can pick up some bulk dried nuts and fruit. Clif bars are good and so are candy bars. Think about foods that won’t perish and pack in lots of nutritional value.

Alcohol wipes – you can use these to clean wounds and they double as a powerful fire starter. The alcohol burns long enough for you to get a fire started with relative ease. Especially in wet weather conditions, these can be life savers.

Water filter – Another essential piece of gear you can’t afford to leave out. Water filters like the Sawyer water filter can easily and rapidly filter out bacteria found in dubious water sources.

Extra socks – when the cheese foot sets in you’re going to want a dry pair of socks. There is something about a change of socks that boosts morale and gives you that last little boost of motivation. Do not go balls deep into a fully blown SHTF situation without an extra pair of socks. Your feet will thank me later.

Backpack – All this gear has to go into something right? Sure, you can use that Jansport bag you’ve had since freshman year of highschool but I don’t recommend it. Those straps and zippers will bust at a moments notice. They simply aren’t made to handle the load of a full blown survival kit. While most of the items on this budget survival kit are light, if you add more gear in the future you will run into problems with a standard school bag. I have made a list of the best tactical backpacks for your reading leisure. Take a look at the list. There are some budget friendly bags towards the bottom that are actually quite nice, yet very reliable.

The Grand total

So without the backpack the grand total for this budget survival kit comes to $85.29. Considering many survival kits you see online are upwards of $500 and more, this is a very solid kit at a budget price. If you don’t have the money for everything just buy single items until you have gathered all the gear you need.

With a little time, you will have a bug out bag that rivals even the best. You can then rest soundly at night knowing you are prepared or the worst.

What do you think of this survival kit? Did I miss anything? Let me know in the comments below.