Letter Re: Food Storage Calculations

James, I came across a website advertising a food storage calculator for $18. Here’s a free one from the LDS Church. http://www.providentliving.org/emergencyprep/calculator/0,11242,2008-1,00.html It invites you to identify the gender/ages of family members to produce the custom report. By reading carefully, you will note you can manually change the suggested quantities to reflect your family’s preferences. It’s pretty complete and lets you calculate quantities by quarters (3 months, 6 months, all the way out to 3 years). One thing for sure: it will make you realize that money and proper storage area are important issues to deal with. Maybe most folks …




Letter Re: Redoubling Our Efforts

Hi Jim, Our first mountain snow of the season here in Wyoming has re-vitalized our preparation efforts. We took a good, hard look at the homestead and made some substantial improvements this past week or two. Transportation – I took my EMP-proof 1984 diesel 4X4 in for the new steering gear that has been on the back burner for some time. The new engine is now broken in, so I installed a dual filter system and switched to synthetic diesel-grade motor oil, which will only require semi-annual changes. Backup Heating – We already had a wood burning stove in the …




Odds ‘n Sods:

My personal taste runs towards magazines like Backwoods Home and Countryside & Small Stock Journal. However, the once great Mother Earth News (now sadly yuppified) occasionally runs a great article. David in Israel recommended this one: http://www.motherearthnews.com/library/2001_April_May/Top_20_Homesteading_Tools







(Josephine and JacksonRecommended Region: The Rogue River Valley Counties, Southwest Oregon)

Concentrate on small towns that are off of Interstate 5, such as Gold Hill and Jacksonville. Josephine County crops: Hay, corn, tomatoes, potatoes, apples, cherries, grapes, peaches, pears, berries, garlic, and herbs. Statistics (for Central Point): Average high temperature in August: 90. Average low temperature in January: 30.8. Growing season: 165 days (1st of May to mid-October). Average snowfall in January: 3.2”. Median residential home price: (Rogue River): $145,000. Median residential home price: (Gold Hill): $135,000. Advantages: Mild climate with a long growing season. Upwind from all potential nuclear targets in CONUS. Disadvantages: Proximity to California’ s Golden Horde. All …




Letter from Bob in England Re: England’s Lack of Retreat Potential

Dear Mr Rawles: Greetings from the UK. Thanks for the very interesting website. I have your book which I’ve read a few times now. I must admit to a certain envy with the potential you have over there to prepare for the possible difficult times ahead. Just as an exercise and to make some of the people living in even the most restrictive states feel not quite so bad I thought I’d do a run down in your style for England the ‘state’ in which I live. As you will know the United Kingdom is made of (leaving aside the …




From David in Israel Re: EMP and EMP Protection

Just following the blog for the past few weeks it seems the biggest discussion is EMP. I have to say that the idea of an EMP far enough away from Air Force One to not blow the wings off will at worst disrupt HF radio for a few days/weeks as the ionosphere recovers from being charged up beautiful aurora would be expected. commercial aircraft would likely also be not adversely affected. The EMP myth started with the day after and grew massive, how much EMP is a car expected to survive before we consider it safe for survival purposes. When …




Letter Re: Diesel Tractors and EMP Protection

Sir, here is a short bit of advice about EMP: The older diesel farm tractors would probably be usable after an event because they have no chips or transistors to burn out, either in engines or transmissions. They’d be slow but still usable for as long as you have fuel with either gravity flow or manual pumps for fueling. Hook one to a trailer or former motor home and welcome to the post 21st century nomads. They could also power most PTO driven generators if the generator circuitry has escaped the EMP. In our area a lot of people collect …




Letter Re: Google’s Aerial Topographic Map Site and Idaho

Jim, Another very neat -very free resource that is out there is the Google Earth program. It is available through www.downloads.com. Many of the aerial photos that are used are substandard or old. However much of Eastern Washington and a lot of Northern Idaho contain the most up to date and detailed color aerial photos. This program also allows you to drop down to above the Earth’s surface and move around like you are flying. It also uses some topo functions to view the surface in relief. This tool may be very handy and useful for many scouting out the …




Letter Re: Rural New York

Hi, As you say, the northeast is not so good for a variety of reasons. However, if one has to stay in that area for family, work or any number of other reasons there are areas where one can be more secure than you might expect. For example, I live in Central New York State. Our place is more then 40 miles in any direction to an interstate highway. The entire county has a population of just over 51k and a population density of about 57 per square mile. Most of this is concentrated in a few larger towns at …




Letter from Bob in England Re: England’s Lack of Retreat Potential

Dear Mr Rawles: Greetings from the UK. Thanks for the very interesting website. I have your book which I’ve read a few times now. I must admit to a certain envy with the potential you have over there to prepare for the possible difficult times ahead. Just as an exercise and to make some of the people living in even the most restrictive states feel not quite so bad I thought I’d do a run down in your style for England the ‘state’ in which I live. As you will know the United Kingdom is made of (leaving aside the …







Jim’s Quote of the Day:

"The right of self-defense is the first law of nature; in most governments it has been the study of rulers to confine this right within the narrowest possible limits. … and [when] the right of the people to keep and bear arms is, under any color or pretext whatsoever, prohibited, liberty, if not already annihilated, is on the brink of destruction." – St. George Tucker, Virginia Supreme Court Judge, 1803




Specific Regions to Consider for Retreats – Western U.S.

I’ve completed the “State by State” level analysis series that I posted earlier in the month. For ease of reference, this data is now archived at the Retreat Areas static page. (See the new button in the SurvivalBlog navigation bar.) I’m now moving on to providing detailed retreat locale recommendations. While I’m posting these, please give this some serious thought. Particularly for those of you living east of the Mississippi and for our overseas readers, I would appreciate you sharing your expertise. If you know of a particular region with retreat potential, please e-mail me the details, and I will …




Recommended Region: The Kalispell/Flathead Lake Region (Flathead County, Western Montana)

Concentrate on small towns north of the reservation line, such as Bigfork, Creston, Proctor, Rollins, and Somers. On Staying Outside the Reservation: Much of the lower elevations in this region are inside the boundaries of the Flathead Indian Reservation. The united Salish and Kootenai (“S&K”) tribal government has been forcefully asserting its sovereignty in recent years, affecting both tribal members and everyone else living inside the reservation boundaries. (Even deeded property owners!) If you want to buy land in this region, buy land that is beyond the reservation boundaries but that is still at low elevation. This you will have …