Notes from JWR:

By popular demand, the 33% off sale price for the “Rawles Gets You Ready” preparedness course has been extended until Monday night (December 3rd.) Be sure to place your order online (or have it postmarked) before midnight, Monday.

Today’s first article is from the SurvivalBlog archives. I wrote it back in August of 2005. For the sake of the many newbies, I am re-posting it:

The Pre-Test and the Ultimate Test

There may come a day when you have to put all of your training and preparations to use. That will be ultimate test of whether or not you have a true survival mindset. Do you think that you are ready for WTSHTF, physically and mentally? Assuming that you live in the suburbs, try a weekend “grid down” test with your family. This will test both your mental preparedness and how well you have prepared for the basics. Here is how it is done: Some Friday evening, unannounced, turn off your main circuit breaker and shut the valves the gas main and the water main. Leave them off until Monday morning. You might be surprised how the weekend goes. One thing that I can guarantee you: Some of the most accurate lists of logistics that you will ever compose are those written by candlelight.

Now, assuming that your weekend … Continue reading

Letter Re: Security for Unattended Retreats

Hello Jim,
Todd’s article [on Friday, November 23rd] was a good discussion on the all encompassing aspects of your retreat. It has been some time since security has been discussed on the blog, namely security systems. Here are some things that could, (should) alert you to a detrimental event at your intended retreat when you do not live there.
Have a security system wired into you future retreat, motor home, CONEX, outbuilding, etc… I would venture a cost range from $300-to-$2,000 to cover your structure from basic to very well covered. Monitoring varies and will likely run around a Dollar a day.

There are countless options that provide “extra sets of eyes and ears” at your retreat during life as we know it. There are many companies that will give you support so you can install your own system. They will likely cash sale you the … Continue reading

Letter Re: Reactions to Preparedness Course


Your “Rawles Gets You Ready” preparedness course is an amazing tome of information and I refer to it quite often. I’m thankful to have found it and I’m grateful that there are folks out there, like you and Jim, who are willing to devote serious amounts of time and effort sharing (well, okay, selling for a reasonable price) their knowledge. Hats off to you!

Its weird, I’ve shown the course to several people and several ridiculed me for having spent such a sum of money on 220 pages of information relating to some guy’s shopping spree at a big box store. They simply failed to understand the importance of the information contained. Their reactions were what I’d expected but, surprisingly, three of the seven or eight folks I showed the course to found it to be as interesting and important as I did, and one of them … Continue reading

Weekly Survival Real Estate Market Update

We have seen the first significant snowfall in northern Idaho and northwestern Montana which from the scuttlebutt around town has sent sellers into a panic, in which they rightly should be. Although some folks around my locale understand the engineered crash of the Dollar, most are still of the opinion that pulling their property off the market and waiting until spring will yield them either a better price (good luck) or a faster sale at that time (maybe so, with a plethora of SurvivalBloggers arriving?). This makes for more detailed work for your agent as they now must search the recently expired, withdrawn and canceled listings in your locale of choice, as much as the active listings for sale to find your retreat.

The other issue is that most sellers, if the property remains on the market into winter, either fail to realize or just don’t want to admit that … Continue reading

Odds ‘n Sods:

Reader Michael C. mentioned that there is a nice selection of online bushcraft books at the Backyard Bushcraft web site.

   o o o

S&P Says Third-Quarter Housing Prices Dropped by Sharpest Rate in Index’s 21-Year History

   o o o

Bob M. in Pittsburg sent us this article link: The “Free Money” Credit Card Brawl at KMart. Bob’s comment: “I’m not sure which is more appalling; that people would riot, and behave thusly, or that they think that ‘credit’ is in fact, ‘free’ money!”

   o o o

From The Wall Street Journal: Study Warns of Decline In Value of Homes. The article begins: “The property value of U.S. homes will fall by $1.2 trillion, and ‘at least’ 1.4 million homeowners will lose their properties to foreclosure in 2008…”

Note from JWR:

Today we present another article for Round 13 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The writer of the best non-fiction article will win a valuable four day “gray” transferable Front Sight course certificate. (Worth up to $2,000!) Second prize is a copy of my “Rawles Gets You Ready” preparedness course, generously donated by Jake Stafford of Arbogast Publishing. Round 13 ends tomorrow (November 30th). Remember that articles that relate practical “how to” skills for survival will have an advantage in the judging.

Recycle!, Recycle!, Recycle!, by Heghduq

In the age of disposability one is hard pressed to find items that can be re-used. But if one looks hard enough you would be amazed at one can find to recycle and re-use. First don’t take anything for granted just because it says disposable on the package doesn’t mean that you cannot re-use it or part of it. Let’s take a look at some simple items that can be recycled and or cannibalized to be used for other purposes.
When living on a fixed income it is paramount that you save as much money as possible. $600 a month is not a lot to work with when it comes to disposable income. So every penny counts. I learned most of my Recycling skills from my mother. She is a little off the rocker as it were but very practical when it comes to such things. A lot … Continue reading

Letter Re: Advice on Buying AR-10 Rifles

I live outside of Boise, [Idaho] on 40 acres with a deep well and have most everything ready for a jump to my brother’s new ranch in Montana, if (when) the SHTF. While my place will be occupied by my friends that don’t have anywhere to go and /or want to stay in the area. I will leave for a better Bug Out Location where I and my family can better survive long term. I only live here because it is a good job and I can’t find anything even close to pay in the part of Montana that my brother lives in. He is a doctor and can afford the remote life style.

I would like your input,. My brother and I are getting ready to buy a pair of .308 semiauto rifles and for the most part I like the Armalite AR-10Continue reading

Letter Re: Preparedness Course Applicability for Australia?

Hello Mr. Rawles,
I was looking to take advantage of your “1/3-off” offer on your “Rawles Gets You Ready” preparedness course, but before I spend that kind of money, I was wondering if you could tell me how suitable you course is for non-US conditions, specifically, Australian conditions? How “Americanized” is it, and how difficult would it be to “translate” it into Australian?

I really enjoy your blog, and have found your tips and those of your contributors very helpful. Kind Regards, – Richard C.

JWR Replies: The course and accompanying audio CD are largely geared toward American and Canadian readers, but if you have comparable “warehouse” type stores with large container/case lots of packaged foods available, then it should be 95% useful to you. Oh BTW, one oversight: I don’t list the shelf life of Vegemite.

The 33% off sale for the course … Continue reading

Odds ‘n Sods:

Paris suburb riots called ‘a lot worse’ than in 2005

   o o o

EU President Barroso: Weak dollar a ‘problem’ for world economy

   o o o

The precious metals market has been volatile, jumping up and down on every bit of international economic and financial news. I currently suggest “at-or-below” buy prices of $818 for gold, and $14.42 for silver. As always, buy on the dips! And, as previously mentioned, be sure to get your beans, bullets, and Band-Aids squared away before investing any excess cash in precious metals. It now appears very likely that the Federal Reserve will make further interest rate cuts. This can only be bearish for the US Dollar and bullish for silver and gold. Get out of dollars and in to tangibles!

   o o o

Murray and Larry W. both spotted this one: Citigroup to Raise … Continue reading

Notes from JWR:

The 33% off sale for the “Rawles Gets You Ready” preparedness course ends in just two days. Be sure to place your order online or have it postmarked by November 30th

Today we present another article for Round 13 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The writer of the best non-fiction article will win a valuable four day “gray” transferable Front Sight course certificate. (Worth up to $2,000!) Second prize is a copy of my “Rawles Gets You Ready” preparedness course, generously donated by Jake Stafford of Arbogast Publishing. Round 13 ends on November 30th. Remember that articles that relate practical “how to” skills for survival will have an advantage in the judging.

Choosing a BOV, by Brian B. in Iraq

There is something to be said about having a defendable retreat far from society with multiple routes to reach it and the preparations that go along with it. But all of those preparations are for naught if you haven’t considered the best way to get from Point A to Point B.
With the ever rising fuel prices that we all are experiencing nowadays, it’s very likely that your Bug Out Vehicle (BOV) will also be your main means of transportation. Unless you are really squared away and have the finances to allow it, many of us simply can not afford a dedicated BOV in addition to our regular daily-use vehicle. That is compounded by the spouse’s need for a vehicle and Lord help you if you have teenage kids. If you feel like you fit into this category, I’m going to give you some advice on what vehicles to … Continue reading