JWR’s Recommendations of the Week:

Here are JWR’s Recommendations of the Week for various media and tools of interest to SurvivalBlog readers. The focus is usually on emergency communications gear, bug out bag gear, books, and movies–often with a tie-in to disaster preparedness, and links to “how-to” self-sufficiency videos. There is also an emphasis on links to sources for storage food and a variety of storage and caching containers. You will also note an emphasis on history books and historical movies. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. This week, we feature a book by Alaskan pioneer Richard Proenneke. (See the Books section.)


This book by Richard Proenneke is a must for the bookshelf of every serious off-grid survivalist: One Man’s Wilderness, 50th Anniversary Edition: An Alaskan Odyssey

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Never Split the Difference: Negotiating As If Your Life Depended On It

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A great book for those who use cast iron: Faith, Family & the Feast: Recipes to Feed Your Crew from the Grill, Garden, and Iron Skillet

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National Geographic Atlas of the National Parks

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One of our #1 Daughter’s favorite books: Man of the Family

Web Sites & Blogs:

Clay’s Guide to Urban Defense: Ep. 4 Hardening the Home

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The Box O’Truth

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Every Blade Of Grass

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Mausers & Muffins

Instructional Videos & Vlogs:

Reader Tim J. came through, as usual, with some great links:

Best Battery Powered Chainsaw Brand? Let’s find out! Milwaukee vs DeWalt, Makita, Ryobi & WORX

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Volcon Grunt is an electric motorcycle you can ride underwater

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The Simplest Apple Pie Ever

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And Peter liked this piece at Brushbeater: Directional Antennas For The Small Unit, Part 2

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Another from Peter: Stabilize Your Firing Grip with the Wedge Hold – Massad Ayoob on Master Class Ep. 19


Roy Smeck (No, he wasn’t Eddie Van Halen’s Dad)

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Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver – Through the Years

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The Definitive Vince Guaraldi

Gear & Grub:

Still the best: Country Living Hand Grain Mill. I should mention that we’ve used ours for flour grinding here at the Rawles Ranch a couple of days each week, for 14 years, with zero problems.

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ATN TIWSTLT136X Thor LT 3-6x Thermal Rifle Scope w/10+hrs Battery & Ultra-Low Power Consumption, Black

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CLIF BAR – Energy Bars – Chocolate Brownie – (2.4 Ounce Protein Bars, 12 Count)

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And for those cold winter nights: Swiss Miss Indulgent Collection Dark Chocolate Sensation Hot Cocoa Mix, 8 count

Featured Antique Gun of the Week

Our featured antique gun of the week is an 1894-vintage L.C. Smith Grade OO Double Shotgun. This is a 12 Gauge, with 2-3/4″ chambers.  Like most other pre-1899 guns, it can be mailed or shipped directly to your doorstep without any paperwork or FFL dealer involvement. (Be sure to check your state and local laws before ordering.) Take a look at the many recently-added guns at the Elk Creek Company store.

Take heed: The big Pre-Election Sale at Elk Creek Company will end in just six days. Consider this: Pre-1899 guns are the last bastion of firearms ownership privacy, since they are entirely outside of Federal jurisdiction. These are guns that you can buy and that you can later simply hand to your children or grandchildren, nieces, nephews, or whomever, across state lines, with no paperwork whatsoever. (Whether it is a gift, sale, or trade.) Most of the guns in our inventory are both collectible and practical shooters. Who knows what will happen to the availability of all guns and ammunition, if Joe Biden is elected? The current rush of sales will probably turn into absolute panic buying. So, don’t hesitate. Order soon!

Make a Suggestion

Want to suggest Recommendations of your own? Then please send them to JWR. (Either via e-mail of via our Contact form.) Thanks!


  1. I can’t believe the coincidence that you have Richard Proenneke pictured in his cabin doorway! I have thinking a lot about him recently. He has inspired me, and I’ve been saying to myself this past week, and even this very evening, “I’m doing it. I’m doing the Richard Proenneke.” This is in reference to the inside temperature of his cabin getting a toasty 48 degrees F. I have not turned any heat on yet this fall, and the last few mornings it has been 48 degrees in my house. It warms up to 50-56 degrees by the afternoon.

    One of my son’s and I used to love to watch the bear thriller movie, “The Edge,” with Anthony Hopkins and Alec Balwin. (not for children!) One of our favorite quotes from it was, “What one man can do, another man can do.”

    I’m sleepless in Seattle for some strange reason, so I’ve prayed for you all. I have a big day helping my dad tomorrow, which will be really enjoyable.

    BTW, I read, “Little Britches,” and “Man of the Family,” to my kids back in the late 90’s and they loved them. Definitely worth getting.

    RKRGRL68, PJGT, SaraSue, CDM, BWL & wife, Chris in Arkansas & wife, Scott & wife,
    Bear’s traveling friend/relative, Kim in KY son, Deb, Wormlady, Tunnel Rabbit, and TofA all have specific prayer needs. The rest of you get blessings from the Lord too.

    Hope your day will be great, Krissy

    1. Krissy, I am so touched that you included my name on your prayer list. I have not been participating in the Saturday prepping post because hubby’s health has definitely taken the front seat in our thoughts and actions. Thank you for your prayers.

      As far as keeping the thermostat down – wow! I’m impressed!
      Hubby has frequent hot flashes and cold sweats due to the medication he takes. His thermostat and consequently ours, is all over the dial.

    2. Krissy,

      Thank you for your prayers for me. I came home last evening after surgery to repair/replace C-3 through C-6 in my spine.
      I’m in a Vista spinal collar for about 6-8 weeks, but despite being in terrible pain, your mention of me made me smile and cry.

      I will post more later in the week on how I’m progressing, I just wanted you to know how much I appreciate you thinking of me

      Have a Rockin great day!

      1. Hey RKRGRL68, glad to hear you are home. I had C2 – C6 fused almost 7 years ago so I understand how you feel. Praying for pain relief and rapid healing. Take it easy these first weeks. Funny story, my surgeon didn’t use any stitches on my incision just glued everything. Well about 7 days after surgery, I was home and had taken a shower. While brushing my hair I felt a couple of hard spots on my scalp. I thought they were just scans from the device used during surgery to stabilize your head. I couldn’t see myself so had my wife check them. Lo and behold, they were staples (4) that i didn’t know about. My wife called surgeons office about them and they told my wife to go ahead and take them out. Well my wife is like absolutely not. They made an appointment to get them removed.

      2. RKRGRL68! So thankful for the news that you are safely home, and recovering… Every step forward is a step forward. They may seem slow at first, but you will gain momentum. We are praying for you in earnest!

      3. RKRGRL68, I will be praying for you for sure. I’m so glad that you are home now. I’ve had a very long fusion, so I understand your pain. May God richly bless you soon with pain free days and a healthy cervical spine! Hugs from Texas!

      4. Wow, RKRGRL68. I send big prayers for your rapid and full recovery.

        I was only today doing gratitude with my sweet spouse for our lives of relatively low amount of misery. Not a cake walk, just a lot of blessings to count.

        And, earlier in the day, I was wondering about your two young Marines. I reckon they are adding their prayers for your well-being.

        Carry on in grace

    3. Thank you so much, Krissy! It’s not fun being “sleepless”, but we are so blessed that you used that time of insomnia to pray for those of us with special prayer needs.

      It’s a beautiful sunny day here in the Willamette Valley. I hope you are enjoying nice weather up in Washington as well. Have a wonderful day!

    4. Thank you Krissy! I go in the hospital tomorrow for surgery to put in a tube for the stem cell collection and 3 days of chemo. I appreciate all the prayers! Especially since I’ve developed a change of season cough.

      Prays for all and for you as well. God is our healer and some times he works through our great doctors and staff. Thankful!


      1. PJGT, I will be praying for you as you go into the hospital tomorrow. May God bless you especially while you go through this process. I pray that He heals your body as only He can. Blessings to you.

  2. After years of using my Stihl 16″, I tore my shoulder and took months to heal. Of course, living in the country and creating a farmstead, one doesn’t sit back and relax. I have always used DeWalt drills and other tools, so I got the DeWalt 16″ battery chainsaw. It surprised the heck out of me as I wasn’t expecting much from a battery operated tool. This thing is a power house around the farm; it takes down 12″ oak trees easily and has run up to 2-1/2 hours of tree and brush clearing on a charge. When my sons are here they fight over who has to use the Stihl or the DeWalt and when they are around I have to use the 12″ for cutting up firewood.

    1. I make this comment here often, those battery chainsaws have been banned by some organizations back east because the increased torque can cut through standard chainsaw chaps. In short, they are powerful and not to be underestimated, and I mean that as a compliment.

      I was able to use a dewalt saw during a demo and it cut a 16” oak round without a hitch.

  3. Krissy be careful with low temperature and big swings in temperature in your house.
    My dad had a stroke and came to live with us 50 miles from his his house. We are going through the house sorting it out and upgrading some plumbing deep cleaning etc. The main heating system was not working for the past year and we ran some electric heaters that were just enough to keep the pipes from freezing… and the mold and mildew ROARED! I really wish we had not allowed the roller coaster temperature swings because as a result we have thrown away the carpets, curtains, 2 mattresses, and more.

  4. After a quick check of some reviews, I would shy away from that thermal scope. The negative reviews were consistent on battery issues and failing to hold zero. I always look for repeat issues when reading reviews as a measure of legitimacy and not just disgruntled people posting bad reviews. Plus, for my personal preference I avoid contained rechargeable units. I tend to look for items that accept regular batteries, especially in the AA range as I don’t want to depend on a power source to use something as high priority as a scope. I usually avoid even the CR123 batteries just because I believe they would be harder to find when absolutely needed. Just my 2 cents.

  5. Never heard of Richard Proenneke; if I have, I’ve forgotten who he be. … That’s a large metal gold pan next to his cabin door. A pan for filling with a large shovel, and NOT a peewee garden trowel. +A large metal gold-pan, rattling away, will help keep the big bears away too.

    There’s still placer gold up ‘in them thar hills’ of the Redoubt Region. (Though placer gold is usually found in the creek beds).
    Any family, with sons thinking about living in the basement and playing video games as a livelihood, might consider moving to the Redoubt Region.

    ~>Hobby gold panning will get people outside; some people take to gold panning like fish to water. … The way to get rich in gold panning is ~selling equipment to the miners; including the instructions of where to find the gold up in them thar hills.

    1. Richard “Dick” Proenneke was a very interesting person. He filmed himself building a cabin in the Twin Lakes section of Lake Clark. It’s an old volcanic range with an aviation pass. The area had already been homesteaded for years with several cabins in the vicinity and one outfitter guiding sheep and caribou hunts nearby. Dick filmed himself building his cabin with hand tools he brought in by plane. He was an innovative builder and a naturalist. In addition to filming his cabin building, he also filmed a large amount of wildlife in the area. Quite a few people inappropriately think Dick “survived” in the wild. In truth, he was very dependent upon most of his food supplies and other necessities being flown in from Port Alsworth. Dick himself spent a good deal of time in Port Alsworth doing odd jobs and construction. He did spend a few whole years at his cabin, but mostly he came and went from the cabin. I say that not to take away from his accomplishments, but simply so people have a better understanding of the man. Dick was a healthy person who was never sick. His stamina for long mountain climbs are the stuff of legend. His films are still shown on PBS and are available for purchase. A fascinating man who has been studied by many. HIs daily journals have been turned into multiple books. A list of the books Dick himself read and studied is also available. When Lake Clark became a National Preserve, Dick remained under a grandfathering clause. Upon his death, the cabin ownership transferred to the National Parks system upon his request. You can fly into Twin Lakes and go see the cabin as it still stands today. Be aware, there is a quite large bear population in the area. The park service has installed several bear proof storage boxes around the camping area near the cabin. I highly recommend a trip to the area if you so desire. The beauty of Lake Clark is stunning even if you don’t go see Dick’s cabin.

  6. An excellent video about what’s going on in America is “America In Peril” by BuzzSaw Media. It includes commentary by people from Cuba and various Central and South American countries. One of the interviewees is a survivor of the Bay of Pigs invasion and another is in my Sunday School class.


    1. David Spilker, thank you for your comment about Massad Ayoob, and ~~Stabilize Your Firing Grip with the Wedge Hold~~ Massad Ayoob on Master Class Ep. 19~ … Video on YouTube dated 10/23/2020.<~~
      ……. I would NOT have watched the video without your comment; even though the linked video is an ~excellent recommendation on SurvivalBlog.

      The 'Wedge Grip' can help stabilize the muzzle (aim point) of handguns when shooting. … Massad Ayoob goes through the process of applying the 'Wedge Grip' ~ if needed for a particular hand-size, and maybe also a particular handgun.
      [or as explained, even a world class shooter can sometimes increase a shooting score by just a few points with the Wedge Grip.]
      …….. For the rest of us, being an accurate shot is about as important as having a gun available.

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