How to Prepare a Refugee Bug Out Bag- Part 1, by Charles T.

The idea of leaving home and “living off the land” is a popular discussion point among preparedness-minded individuals. Many think they will grab their bug out bag and set off for a new life somewhere, foraging for wild edibles and having magical adventures on the way as they live out of their untested $200 tactical bag. Let’s be real for a second. There is a word for someone who has lost their home and is now living out of a backpack; it’s refugee! Last I checked, there was nothing glamorous about being a refugee, and if you are planning for …




Base Layers and Their Differences – Part 2, by A.S.

If you recall from the first installment of this article which was posted early this month, I discussed the start of base layering principle which I am sure most people are very familiar with–especially those who read this blog. I also brought up the types of material used such as Polypropylene, Merino wool and the new fibre Tencel. In this installment I want to break down some information on the other layers involved and give my thoughts from long time use of garment materials that work in longevity. Goretex jackets are great for hikers and for those who take trips …




Base Layers and the Differences- Part 1, by A.S.

Today there is a great deal of knowledge on the Internet and outdoor magazines about “layering”, so most people who are daily or frequent readers of SurvivalBlog would have a good understanding of using different layers to keep the human body neither too cold nor too hot. Either one will have life threatening consequences if not managed correctly away from urban areas. For the purpose of this article my intention is to explain, in layman’s terms, some of the finer points of using different base layer fibers and their properties, as well bring to attention a new space age fiber, …




Getting Home – Part 1, by BF

I recently had to travel for work to a large, Midwestern city with a population of about two million. I needed to spend two weeks there working with a team to help recover an IT development project that had gone “south”. I could have traveled back home for the middle weekend; however, I didn’t want to spend all the extra time traveling, waiting for connections in airports, and so forth, so I stayed in the city. The Challenge For fun, I decided to spend that weekend seeing what I could put together for a get home bag, with a target …




Letter: Clothes Hanger for Armor

Hugh, Many in the community have invested in steel plate body armor. Due to the weight, use of ordinary hangers is out of the question, so it ends up sitting in a heap on the floor or hooked to a nail in the wall. Constructing an effective clothes hanger for your rig so that it can hang in the closet and up off the floor takes about 15 minutes, six dollars, and a trip to Home Depot. Bill of Materials: 1 each 2-ft section of 1.25 inch diameter schedule 40 PVC Pipe $3.23 2 each PVC Pipe end caps 1.25 …




Letter Re: To Camo or Not To Camo?, by J.M.

Good morning, Hugh, J.M.’s letter on camouflage is a good one. As for group members procuring the more expensive camo patterns, digital camo is nearly impossible to duplicate, but “generic casual camo” can be home made. Begin with clothing of an appropriate base color. Desert requires tan shirts and pants, woodland a medium brown, urban a medium gray, and so forth. (Don’t get shirts and pants in exactly the same base shade; it’ll look like a suit.) A few dollars of clothing dye, rubber gloves, and some rags or inexpensive paintbrushes will allow adding random shapes of complimentary colors. When …




Letter Re: To Camo or Not To Camo?, by J.M.

HJL, J.M.’s point about having an agreement with your team about what to wear when you are approaching a team compound so you can be recognized as belonging to part of a team brought up a very good point that I think deserves closer examination. Basically what J.M. is talking about is a method of authentication. He also did bring up some of the weak points of using this as authentication, such as if you get commonly available camouflage will someone be able to infiltrate? Let’s take it a step further. What if you get extremely custom one-of-a-kind camouflage and …




Letter Re: Stomping Laundry Clean in TEOTWAWKI

Hugh, Another alternative: Take two laundry baskets. Put the wet clothes in the first, nest the second inside the first, and stomp away. Water will flow through the holes. You may have to drill holes lower in the basket, if the floor of the basket is solid. Alternatively, you can use two buckets. Drill large holes in the bottom bucket. – CDV




Letter: Stomping Laundry Clean in TEOTWAWKI

HJL, My grandmother lived in a small village in Vermont at a time when there was only one washing machine in the village. The lady who owned it made her living taking in other people’s wash. My grandmother mostly did her own, in the big farmhouse kitchen sink. I remember the corrugated washing board and seeing her scrubbing clothes on it. During TEOTWAWKI we will be in a similar situation, but there is a much easier method of washing clothes, which I have adapted from traditional methods of pressing grapes to make wine. It involves a bathtub, soap, water heated …




Guest Article: To Camo or Not To Camo? That is the Question, by: J.M.

When considering what one needs during a TEOTWAWKI scenario, clothing is always on the list. We often choose our clothing based on looks or functionality. However, when preparing for TEOTWAWKI, we need to take both into consideration, especially with camouflage! Almost every person I know plans on using some type of camouflage, whether a military or tactical pattern, as their choice for everyday use. This is perfectly acceptable, but I constantly tell them that they should not limit themselves to just one pattern. Let’s look at two scenarios that may affect what one might wear or carry. Scenario 1: You …




Two Letters Re: Starch in ACUs

JWR Wrote: “By the time the U.S. Army reached the ACU-issue period, starching was not allowed. You can be relatively certain that none of the OCP (“Multicam”) uniforms that you buy surplus have never been starched. Best Regards.” As a guardsman of four years, I have seen starched and pressed ACUs at least a handful of times in direct violation of AR670-1. You would think these were being worn by old timers of the BDU era, but it’s a mixed bag. I have seen these on specialists trying to impress as well as Majors. They are not common by any …




Seasonal Items and Survival Steps, by P.F.

It never ceases to amaze me when something seemingly trivial that occurs in my life can lead to so much self reflection and totally change the direction I travel, so to speak, in my life planning. I recently decided to purchase a spare, portable plug-in heater for my camper, in the interest of redundancy. So, off I went blissfully unaware that this simple, last-minute decision would alter the course of history, my history that is. I went to my local big-box store and soon realized an important issue I had never thought about before– seasonal items are difficult to find …




Letter Re: Cottage/Local Manufacturing After SHTF

I am a former dressmaker, with considerable experience in making clothing, and I appreciated the article on doing this for barter. However, there are problems. The first is fabric. Presumably the sensuously idyllic pleasures of going to the fabric shops in the garment district of New York City will no longer be an option. Too charred. Apart from that, while there are a few scattered fabric stores here and there, they are steadily going out of business, as fewer and fewer people sew. For the most part, assuming you can get there and assuming they are intact, they carry mostly …




Two Letters Re: Moving Females in SHTF Scenario

HJL, Regarding C.B.’s article on moving females, I have a few suggestions. I have long, thick hair that goes to my waist and for many years had the constant frustration of trying to figure out what to do with it when I was getting dirty (hunting, butchering, cleaning the barn, ect.). Tucking it into a hat never worked for more than 20 minutes at a time. First, the cap or cowboy hat or what ever was in constant danger of being knocked off my head because of the extra mass under it or blown off by our wonderful winds in …




Letter Re: Moving Females in SHTF Scenario

Dear HJL, I’m a female and had some thoughts regarding C.B.’s letter on moving females. On one level, I was a little surprised that we needed special handling but agree that there are predators who do look for the most vulnerable victims out there, whether it’s TEOTWAWKI or not. I think my concern is that if someone is attempting disguise and the expectation is conveyed to them that they will be more vulnerable, it may pump up the fear level in them and that fear will show. I don’t think it is all that easy to truly disguise a female …