Enjoying (and Surviving) Solar Eclipse 2017

On August 21, 2017, residents of a narrow swath through the United States will have a rare treat: The chance to observe a total eclipse of the sun. The path of totality will transit several major cities, including Greenville, South Carolina and parts of St. Louis, Kansas City, and Nashville. In the west, most of the viewing will be in smaller towns, since major cities, like Denver and Portland, are well outside of the path of totality.

Because this eclipse is occurring in mid-summer (with a lower chance of cloud cover), there should be good opportunities for viewing, if you are positioned inland of coastal fog. I have heard that many hotels and motels that are in or near the path of totality have been fully booked for the eclipse travel period since late 2016. And I heard that the hotels and motels in or near Jackson Hole, Wyoming were booked two years in advance. A State Parks official in Oregon told me that their reservation system was overwhelmed in the first 10 minutes after midnight on January 1st, 2017, with folks seeking campground site anywhere near the path of totality.

At this late stage, your best bet would probably be simply boondock camping on BLM or National Forest land. Of course, most SurvivalBlog readers are already well-equipped for boondock car camping. A few musts will be sleeping bags, tents or tarps, cooking gear, LED flashlights, a large plastic water can, a water filter (or better yet a self-filtering water can, and welder’s goggles. (I’ll discuss those more, later.) You will also need sanitary supplies—at least TP and a compact shovel or entrenching tool, but perhaps a bucket toilet lid and a 5 or 7 gallon bucket, if you want to attend to your boondock ablutions in comfort.

There will be so many people traveling to see the eclipse that I expect some major traffic snarls the night before and the morning of the eclipse, particularly on the I-65 corridor north of Nashville and the I-5 Corridor south of Portland, Oregon. (The latter will be crowded with masses of people traveling south from Vancouver, Seattle, and Portland, all in the hopes of seeing the eclipse.)

Safety Warnings

The safety implications of eclipse viewing are obvious: retinal burns can cause permanent blindness and be self-inflicted by direct observation, or by insufficient eye protection. (Anyone who claims that “two thickness of regular sunglasses”, “smoked glass”, or “exposed photographic negatives” will suffice is a fool. In actuality, you will need very dark #14 (aka Shade 14) air-carbon arc cutting lenses. Less opaque gas brazing or welding lenses (typically #5) provide insufficient protection!)

Note: If you already own a welding hood or typical Hobart goggles with a #5 plate, simply buy a darker #14 shade plate , and retrofit it.

The Editors of SurvivalBlog recommend these lightweight glasses, which are also useful to subsequently keep in your welding and thermite kits.

Give any children near you copious safety warnings, and provide them with the means of safe viewing. For example, see the many online instructions on how to build a long cardboard box pinhole eclipse projector. (The longer the box, the larger the projected disk.)

There might be the risk of a few idiots foolishly attempting to “chase” the path of totality on east-west highways, so I don’t recommend parking close to the shoulder of any of those roads, for fear of a high-speed rear-end collision. The ground track speed of the sun is 1,100 miles per hour near the equator and nearly 5,000 miles per hour near the poles so it is foolish to think that you can “chase” the eclipse totality to extend your viewing time in anything slower than a Turbo Mooney Type S airplane running at full throttle at 25,000 feet, whilst sucking oxygen. I suppose that some millionaires will be chartering jets for this event.

In Closing

Book your flights early to the eclipse region, and buy your #14 glasses, goggles, or mask early. I predict that many of the Internet vendors of welding supplies will be sold out of #14 goggles as early as May or June. – JWR

Economics and Investing:

The Gold-Silver Ratio Explained Like Never Before

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Woman Sues Howard Stern For Airing Her Phone Call With IRS Agent Discussing Her Taxes

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Boy was I wrong about this place…

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Gold Prices Reflect Recent US Dollar Weakness

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SurvivalBlog and its editors are not paid investment counselors or advisers. Please see our Provisos page for details.

Odds ‘n Sods:

The best Presidential Press Conference, Ev-ah! Be sure to read through the transcript, with Rush Limbaugh’s comments. I believe Rush is right: Trump is successfully bypassing the “lamestream” press and talking directly to the American people. It is as if he’s channeling Ronald Reagan. Of course, the mass media will claim that he was ranting and has run off the rails. But he’s now shown that he can be a fine communicator.

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Terrifying arsenal of weapons among dozens seized in Met’s gun amnesty – T.P.

HJL’s Comment: “We make men without chests and expect from them virtue and enterprise. We laugh at honor and are shocked to find traitors in our midst.” The words of C.S. Lewis sums this up better than anything I could say.

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If you are in the Northwest or Nevada or Utah and are interested in one of Max Velocity’s tactical courses, May is your month! The venue is just north of Weiser, Idaho:

  • May 10th Combat Lifesaver
  • May 11th-14th Combat Team Tactics
  • May 17th-21 Combat Team Tactics/Mobility
  • May 23rd-25 Direct Action
  • May 26th-28 CQB/Force on Force Team tactics.

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Samsung warns customers not to discuss personal information in front of smart TVs – B.B.

JWR’s Comment: Is it just a coincidence that one of the Top 10 selling books on Amazon.com is George Orwell’s 1984? (It was #6, when I last checked. That is noteworthy for a novel that was written in 1948.)

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Mike Williamson, Survivalblog’s Editor at Large, has informed us that his sources indicate anti-government protests tonight (February 17, 2017) in these locations: Chicago, IL; Joe Marino Park, Rockford, IL; Senator Pat Toomey’s Pittsburgh office, Pittsburgh, PA; Cornell University, Ithaca, NY; Concord State House, Concord, NH; New London, CT; Bloomington, IN; Indianapolis, IN; Boston, MA; Augusta, ME; Bangor, ME; Detroit, MI; Lansing, MI; Asheville, NC; Mooresville, NC; Charlotte, NC; New Brunswick, NJ; Buffalo, NY; Canton, NY; Columbus, OH; Dayton, OH; Toledo, OH; Philadelphia, PA; Norfolk, VA; Richmond, VA.

Each of you should be aware of the potential for such protests to become violent, should you choose to attend or if you live in proximity. Please remain aware of your surroundings and remain safe.

Notes for Thursday – February 16, 2017

February 16th is the birthday of Edgar John Bergen, (1903-1978) an American actor, comedian, and radio performer, best known for his proficiency in ventriloquism and his characters Charlie McCarthy and Mortimer Snerd. He is also the father of actress Candice Bergen.

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Today, we present another entry for Round 69 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The nearly $15,000 worth of prizes for this round include:

First Prize:

  1. A $3000 gift certificate towards a Sol-Ark Solar Generator from Veteran owned Portable Solar LLC. The only EMP Hardened Solar Generator System available to the public.
  2. A Gunsite Academy Three Day Course Certificate that is good for any one, two, or three day course (a $1,195 value),
  3. A course certificate from onPoint Tactical for the prize winner’s choice of three-day civilian courses, excluding those restricted for military or government teams. Three day onPoint courses normally cost $795,
  4. DRD Tactical is providing a 5.56 NATO QD Billet upper with a hammer forged, chrome-lined barrel and a hard case to go with your own AR lower. It will allow any standard AR-type rifle to have a quick change barrel, which can be assembled in less than one minute without the use of any tools and a compact carry capability in a hard case or 3-day pack (an $1,100 value),
  5. An infrared sensor/imaging camouflage shelter from Snakebite Tactical in Eureka, Montana (A $350+ value),
  6. Gun Mag Warehouse is providing 20 Magpul PMAG 30-rd Magazines (a value of $300) and a Gun Mag Warehouse T-Shirt; (an equivalent prize will be awarded for residents in states with magazine restrictions),
  7. Two cases of Mountain House freeze-dried assorted entrees in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources (a $350 value),
  8. A $250 gift certificate good for any product from Sunflower Ammo,
  9. Two cases of meals, Ready to Eat (MREs), courtesy of CampingSurvival.com (a $180 value).

Second Prize:

  1. A Tactical Self-Contained 2-Series Solar Power Generator system from Always Empowered. This compact starter power system is packaged in a wheeled O.D. green EMP-shielded Pelican hard case (a $2,400 value),
  2. A Glock form factor SIRT laser training pistol and a SIRT AR-15/M4 Laser Training Bolt, courtesy of Next Level Training, which have a combined retail value of $589,
  3. A gift certificate for any two or three-day class from Max Velocity Tactical (a $600 value),
  4. A transferable certificate for a two-day Ultimate Bug Out Course from Florida Firearms Training (a $400 value),
  5. A Trekker IV™ Four-Person Emergency Kit from Emergency Essentials (a $250 value),
  6. A $200 gift certificate good towards any books published by PrepperPress.com,
  7. A pre-selected assortment of military surplus gear from CJL Enterprize (a $300 value),
  8. A selection of canned meats containing a 10 pack of 28oz cans of Premium Beef and a 5 pack of 28oz cans of Premium Pork from Wertz’s Farm Market (a $300 value),
  9. RepackBox is providing a $300 gift certificate to their site, and
  10. American Gunsmithing Institute (AGI) is providing a $300 certificate good towards any of their DVD training courses.

Third Prize:

  1. A Model 175 Series Solar Generator provided by Quantum Harvest LLC (a $439 value),
  2. A Royal Berkey water filter, courtesy of Directive 21 (a $275 value),
  3. A custom made Sage Grouse model utility/field knife from custom knife-maker Jon Kelly Designs, of Eureka, Montana,
  4. A large handmade clothes drying rack, a washboard, and a Homesteading for Beginners DVD, all courtesy of The Homestead Store, with a combined value of $206,
  5. Expanded sets of both washable feminine pads and liners, donated by Naturally Cozy (a $185 retail value),
  6. Two Super Survival Pack seed collections, a $150 value, courtesy of Seed for Security, LLC,
  7. Mayflower Trading is donating a $200 gift certificate for homesteading appliances,
  8. Montie Gear is donating a Y-Shot Slingshot and a $125 Montie gear Gift certificate.,
  9. Two 1,000-foot spools of full mil-spec U.S.-made 750 paracord (in-stock colors only) from www.TOUGHGRID.com (a $240 value), and
  10. Fifteen LifeStraws from SafeCastle (a $300 value).
  11. A $250 gift certificate to Tober’s Traditions, makers of all natural (organic if possible) personal care products, such as soap, tooth powder, deodorant, sunscreen, lotion, and more.

Round 69 ends on March 31st, so get busy writing and e-mail us your entry. Remember that there is a 1,500-word minimum, and that articles on practical “how to” skills for survival have an advantage in the judging.

Everyday Carry and the Musings of an Old Guy, for a Post-Apocalyptic World, by OldRonin

A big part of the prepper culture revolves around guns and gear. I must confess, I’m gun and gear poor! I can just about outfit an infantry squad as I write this! My bonafides are as follows:

  • In my youth, I was an Army Airborne Ranger (Ranger class 9/78, assigned to the second Ranger Battalion, 2/75th).
  • Currently, I am a more than 29 year serving police officer and soon to be retired.
  • I’ve done patrol, investigations, FTO, supervision, and I was a SWAT guy at one time.
  • I have also been a “use of force” instructor and have taught rifle, pistol, and shotgun along with police defensive tactics. ‘
  • I have been in some hairy situations over the years, to include two standup gunfights.
  • I am a widower with five children, all of them by the same woman, God rest her soul. Three are grown and two teenage boys are still at home.
  • I have prepped for over 20 years, and, yes, I am old.

I have given a lot of thought to what our world will look like if the thin veneer of civilization peels away. This article includes my own conclusions and opinions about some popular gear and EDC options we spend a lot of time and money on. I will also talk about my thoughts on training, mindset, and violent encounters.

Body Armor

I have worn body armor daily for most of my law enforcement career. It is hot, uncomfortable, and limits your torso flexibility at best. Having said that, I don’t leave home without it! But we need to be realistic about it. If you are over 40 and orthopedically challenged, you will not be very effective trying to shoot, move, and communicate in a full interceptor vest with rifle plates, not to mention all of the ammo, water, and gear you will inevitably strap to it. That stuff is very heavy and meant to be carried by 19 year olds, who believe they are invincible.

Conventional wisdom states you must wear the body armor that will stop the weapon you are carrying. I disagree with that for several reasons. Body armor gives you an edge and nothing more. It never replaces good hard cover or solid tactics. Also, manufacturers are very, very conservative on how they rate the protection levels of their vests. We have level 3 kevlar panels, in concealable carriers, with rifle plate pockets.

If we feel a need for the plates, we can drop them in. I assure you though, that if I’m walking the four miles to town on a hot summer day to trade a cigarette lighter for a roll of toilet paper, I will not be in full battle rattle. Hopefully, no one will realize I’m even wearing body armor. Remember the Gray Man principle?

Weaponry

Whatever you choose to carry is up to you. I am not going to step into that minefield. The situation will dictate whether you should openly carry or conceal; use a handgun or long gun or both. Hopefully, you are well trained in their use and they are configured properly for how you intend to deploy them. For example, if you are carrying an AK with a 3 to 9 variable scope mounted to it and you’ve only fired it from the bench at the local range, you could be in real trouble in a running gunfight. I’m just saying…

Ammunition and Essentials

I must confess, I have a man purse. It looks vaguely military and has a comfortable shoulder strap. It will also hold an amazing amount of useful items and doesn’t make me look like I’m about to invade Iraq!

On my speculative jaunt to town to get toilet paper, it will contain what I think I need to get home. My shoulder bag has two pockets under the flap and two internal pockets, which are ideal for each holding a 30-round AR or AK magazine. With one in the rifle, that’s up to 150 rounds of ammo, which if I’m attacked will hopefully be enough to break contact and run away home!

The main compartment will contain my IFAK, survival gear, and a little bit of food to get me home. Did I mention that my handgun ammo will be on my makeshift battle belt in a magazine pouch, and I will also be carrying a knife or two? Yes, we have more serious load bearing equipment. For example, I got a good deal on universal chest rigs a couple of years ago. They are essentially set up for home defense and escape and evasion (bugging out!), and patrolling. Or in a pinch, they can be used for invading Iraq!

I mentioned my makeshift battle belt. There are all kinds of grossly expensive gear items out there, and I’ve spent my share of hard earned money on some of it. What I’ve learned is if something gets the job done, it doesn’t necessarily need to be the highest speed, mil-spec piece of gear on the market. My battle belt was cobbled together from police gear I’ve acquired over the years and stuff I’ve bought pretty reasonably from Amazon (I love Amazon!).

I started with a cordura nylon duty belt, belt keepers, a Leatherman tool, and a double magazine pouch. I added a kydex holster and a zippered pouch to carry minimal survival and first aid gear. I also added one kydex rifle magazine pouch– the most expensive piece of equipment on the belt! This setup is concealable under a jacket or an un-tucked oversized shirt, and it contains the absolute minimum of what I believe I would need to get home, including my canteen of course.

Water

The Camelbacks and water reservoirs are great! If you have the logistics tail the military does. Before you head out on a mission in the military, you fill it up full of purified water and move out. If you run out of drinking water, that long logistics tail can usually resupply you. The draw backs are that if you have to refill from a source in the field, you just about have to disassemble your gear to do it. Also, they are heavy, hard to clean, and prone to being punctured. (See the previous comment about 19 year olds.)

We have canteens. I did some research and bought everybody a 34 oz, aluminum, Laken camping canteen with shoulder strap. It’s not something I would carry to war, but it’s robust and handy enough for the apocalypse. It’s easily refilled from a puddle or stream, while lying prone and keeping a watch for the bad guys, without stripping your gear. With a filter or supply of purification tabs, we’re good to go! Those canteens are not the only options for water carry we have, but they are the first line.

There are many water container options out there, from stainless steel to plastic. Just remember you need a minimum of a quart a day of clean drinking water just to survive. Obtain accordingly, and after the apocalypse, always carry drinkable water on you. It may save your life.

Physical Fitness and Training

I used to be one of those invincible 19 year olds, but life has crept up on me and taught me lessons I didn’t want to learn. I’ve always been one of those guys that would get hurt, could suck it up and drive on, and would recover quickly. However, I woke up one morning at the ripe old age of 58 and had two stints in my heart, a bulging L-4 L-5 disk, and bad knees, not to mention arthritis in my hips and did I say that I am now pre-diabetic?

I am losing weight and working out at the level of my limitations, and I assure you it’s one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. My advice is to get fit and stay fit! The key I’ve found is to keep moving. When you stop, you will die a lot quicker than you wanted to.

As to training, firing the minimum state CCW course and getting your permit doesn’t mean you are trained. Seek out training that will teach you how to fight with the firearms you have chosen. It can be expensive, but how much is your life and the lives of your loved ones worth? Also, my advice is to be adult and humble about it. In every course I’ve ever been to, there are always a few posers who are more interested in turning the session into a manhood measuring contest instead of absorbing good training. Ignore them, be humble, and focus on getting trained. Don’t take anything personally. Just train, and ignore the posers.

I’m lucky. I’ve had a lot of good training and experience, and I’m a good trainer. I’ve taught my kids and those around me how to shoot, move, and communicate. It may pay big dividends if the veneer of civility peels away at some point in the future.

Violent Encounters

You can be well trained and have all of the high speed weapons and gear on the market and still be cannon fodder in a gunfight. The most deadly weapon you potentially have is your knowledge and a tactical mindset.

On my hypothetical trading mission to town, I will not go alone, and if I go on foot I will not use the roads. I believe roads will be death traps in a post-apocalyptic world. Having said that, if vehicles are still working and fuel is available, the risk may be worth it if you know what to do if ambushed. I will cross that bridge if I come to it.

I know my area well, on and off the roads, and I can get around better than you might think. I live in a semi-rural area and have reconned alternate routes to places I may need to go on foot, with less chance of being observed. You need to know your area and make the terrain work for you. This applies in urban and suburban environments as well. I was taught as a young Ranger that speed, surprise, and violence of action will usually win the day. If, on our hypothetical trading jaunt, we are ambushed, me and mine will assault through the ambush because that’s how I’ve trained them. We will assault into their positions and cause as much mayhem as we can and run through and away to our last rally point, and hopefully regroup. Will we take casualties? Probably, but there is really no other option in that scenario. Any other option constitutes defeat and death!

Now let’s say we are moving through an area and a group of armed people step out and demand we surrender or give them our stuff. Nope! For one thing, if they were committed to violence, they wouldn’t be talking. I will make the quickest tactical assessment I can and start the dance! Remember what I said about speed, surprise, and violence of action?

I guess what I’m trying to say is, I will not hesitate to employ violence if needed. I will not negotiate or equivocate if faced with potential violence in a post-apocalyptic world. Some of you may think I’m mentally deranged, and that’s okay. I am comfortable with possessing the ruthless resolve to protect my kith and kin, and I make no apologies for it.

Does that mean that I will shoot first and ask questions later? Not necessarily; I believe in live and let live, and I believe in charity and community. I will do whatever is within my power to be part of the solution as opposed to the problem and so will my children and those around me. Trust me; I hope to never get into a gunfight again, as long as I live!

In closing, I would like to say these are the opinions and conclusions I’ve come to after much thought and some trial and error. Regardless of whatever I may think, I’m sure the situation we could find ourselves in will dictate our responses. Be prepared the best you can and keep moving!

Be safe out there

Two Letters Re: Wertz Family Farm

Good morning,

I just thought I would be another to drop you a line and mention that you will not go wrong with Wertz Farm Market. I grew up with and actually lived with one of the sons through college. They are old school Christian Conservatives who work hard and serve the community all year round. I was truly astounded and beyond happy to see them get mentioned on your site. – AJM

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Dear HJL & JWR,

You posted on 1-26-17, a short item about Wertz family farm. I looked them up and decided to place an order. I have not tried the canned meat yet, but let me tell you about the packaging. I received the box today, (1-30-2017) via two day priority mail, shipped free with order. Inside, each can is wrapped in a protective cardboard sleeve and shrink wrapped, with small foam peanuts between each can. I was amazed. From the looks of the packing, this company takes exceptional pride in their company. Thanks for the tip! – RDA

Economics and Investing:

Big Brother is watching you: Jim Rogers prophesizes death of cash & total government control of spending

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Fed president says US banks have “half the equity they need”

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Can Saudi Arabia Carry OPEC Through Spring? The unexpectedly high compliance rate of the OPEC production agreement has been in the headlines this week, but the distribution of this compliance is far from equal.

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Yellen Hides Behind Trump Uncertainty, Will Hike As Appropriate

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SurvivalBlog and its editors are not paid investment counselors or advisers. Please see our Provisos page for details.

Odds ‘n Sods:

This headline comes from our “Enlightened” feel-good socialist neighbors to the north: Man who beheaded passenger on Greyhound bus granted freedom. – JWR

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Backwoods Home Magazine will cease publishing its print magazine at the end of 2017. The decision was dictated by simple economics. Thankfully, there will still be a digital edition. – JWR

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Some recent snail mail correspondence with a consulting client included my recommendation for this goodie that could prove incredibly useful in a Get Out of Dodge situation: The Receiver Mount RV Cargo Luggage Carrier Basket.

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This new retreat land listing over at our SurvivalRealty spin-off site for 30 acres near Robbinsville North Carolina is unusual, since it has springs and adjoins US Forest Service land: Smoky Mountain Safe Haven.

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CBP agents dismantle catapult attached to border fence – B.B.

Jim’s Quote of the Day:

“Self defense is moral clarity itself, a fundamental and honorable imperative. Political violence is not, it’s an attractive luxury for well fed malcontents. Beware, aggression often poses as preemptive self defense. Notice our serial warettes started in 1947 when the War Department became the Defense Department. No President has asked Congress to declare defense.” – Ol’ Remus, writing on his Yer Ol’ Woodpile Report blog

Notes for Wednesday – February 15, 2017

February 15th: I’d like to wish Mike Williamson (SurvivalBlog’s Editor At Large) a Happy Birthday!

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America lost a great hero this week: LTG Hal Moore passed away.

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Today, we present another entry for Round 69 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The nearly $15,000 worth of prizes for this round include:

First Prize:

  1. A $3000 gift certificate towards a Sol-Ark Solar Generator from Veteran owned Portable Solar LLC. The only EMP Hardened Solar Generator System available to the public.
  2. A Gunsite Academy Three Day Course Certificate that is good for any one, two, or three day course (a $1,195 value),
  3. A course certificate from onPoint Tactical for the prize winner’s choice of three-day civilian courses, excluding those restricted for military or government teams. Three day onPoint courses normally cost $795,
  4. DRD Tactical is providing a 5.56 NATO QD Billet upper with a hammer forged, chrome-lined barrel and a hard case to go with your own AR lower. It will allow any standard AR-type rifle to have a quick change barrel, which can be assembled in less than one minute without the use of any tools and a compact carry capability in a hard case or 3-day pack (an $1,100 value),
  5. An infrared sensor/imaging camouflage shelter from Snakebite Tactical in Eureka, Montana (A $350+ value),
  6. Gun Mag Warehouse is providing 20 Magpul PMAG 30-rd Magazines (a value of $300) and a Gun Mag Warehouse T-Shirt; (an equivalent prize will be awarded for residents in states with magazine restrictions),
  7. Two cases of Mountain House freeze-dried assorted entrees in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources (a $350 value),
  8. A $250 gift certificate good for any product from Sunflower Ammo,
  9. Two cases of meals, Ready to Eat (MREs), courtesy of CampingSurvival.com (a $180 value).

Second Prize:

  1. A Tactical Self-Contained 2-Series Solar Power Generator system from Always Empowered. This compact starter power system is packaged in a wheeled O.D. green EMP-shielded Pelican hard case (a $2,400 value),
  2. A Glock form factor SIRT laser training pistol and a SIRT AR-15/M4 Laser Training Bolt, courtesy of Next Level Training, which have a combined retail value of $589,
  3. A gift certificate for any two or three-day class from Max Velocity Tactical (a $600 value),
  4. A transferable certificate for a two-day Ultimate Bug Out Course from Florida Firearms Training (a $400 value),
  5. A Trekker IV™ Four-Person Emergency Kit from Emergency Essentials (a $250 value),
  6. A $200 gift certificate good towards any books published by PrepperPress.com,
  7. A pre-selected assortment of military surplus gear from CJL Enterprize (a $300 value),
  8. A selection of canned meats containing a 10 pack of 28oz cans of Premium Beef and a 5 pack of 28oz cans of Premium Pork from Wertz’s Farm Market (a $300 value),
  9. RepackBox is providing a $300 gift certificate to their site, and
  10. American Gunsmithing Institute (AGI) is providing a $300 certificate good towards any of their DVD training courses.

Third Prize:

  1. A Model 175 Series Solar Generator provided by Quantum Harvest LLC (a $439 value),
  2. A Royal Berkey water filter, courtesy of Directive 21 (a $275 value),
  3. A custom made Sage Grouse model utility/field knife from custom knife-maker Jon Kelly Designs, of Eureka, Montana,
  4. A large handmade clothes drying rack, a washboard, and a Homesteading for Beginners DVD, all courtesy of The Homestead Store, with a combined value of $206,
  5. Expanded sets of both washable feminine pads and liners, donated by Naturally Cozy (a $185 retail value),
  6. Two Super Survival Pack seed collections, a $150 value, courtesy of Seed for Security, LLC,
  7. Mayflower Trading is donating a $200 gift certificate for homesteading appliances,
  8. Montie Gear is donating a Y-Shot Slingshot and a $125 Montie gear Gift certificate.,
  9. Two 1,000-foot spools of full mil-spec U.S.-made 750 paracord (in-stock colors only) from www.TOUGHGRID.com (a $240 value), and
  10. Fifteen LifeStraws from SafeCastle (a $300 value).
  11. A $250 gift certificate to Tober’s Traditions, makers of all natural (organic if possible) personal care products, such as soap, tooth powder, deodorant, sunscreen, lotion, and more.

Round 69 ends on March 31st, so get busy writing and e-mail us your entry. Remember that there is a 1,500-word minimum, and that articles on practical “how to” skills for survival have an advantage in the judging.

The New Dawn Approaches, by W.G

We have all seen the shows and read the countless articles on survival, prepping, et cetera. They all offer very valuable information one should retain. This day and age, we can turn on the news and view ethnic cleansing and genocide happening as we watch. Towns, families, cultures are under attack and being annihilated. It is safe to say we not only need to prepare for natural disasters but government-funded ones as well. We can stockpile weapons, ammo, food, water, et cetera, but all that is pointless unless you have the proper mindset.

What is the proper mindset? Total contempt for death. We must embrace the fact that we all die. No amount of ammo, water, or meds will change that. By having contempt for death, you are one step closer to absolute freedom. Face the enemy head on. Let them know you don’t fear death; you only fear not being able to take all of them with you.

One must also have a high regard for life, and realize what they offer us is not life. They offer us their version of life, and we have been playing by their rules for far too long. We have been enslaved under a system that only benefits a few. We no longer have the iron shackles; they have been replaced with an illusion that has enslaved us all. One must regard life and not be afraid to detach from the system of illusion and materialism worship the deceivers have indoctrinated us with. We are simple beings and actually require very little to survive and flourish. Would you not rather take your chances in the open sea, or go down with the burning ship?

Generation after generation we propagate and feed our new blood to the Chaos Serpent. We follow the same path down the same worn trail to the same destination, and then we wonder why, why is the outcome the same? Money is not freedom, materialism is not freedom, and killing and dying for your master is not freedom. The powers that be need you attached to their system in order for them to reign supreme. We must identify their control mechanisms and annihilate these things. For ages the earth has been scattered with the blood and bone of civilizations who have died for the profit of a select few. Over the ages all that has changed is the weapons and the ways in which we destroy each other. Why haven’t things changed? It’s because the most important weapon of man has not changed, the mind. Imagine if they could no longer control us with our fears. Imagine if they no longer could entice us into butchering each other. Imagine total rejection of their system. If you can imagine this, then it can become reality. The war of all wars is of the mind, who will control yours? You or them? Guns and ammo are useless if we are just fighting to prolong the ways of the deceivers. This is what TPTB want– total chaos that they can control and use for their macabre benefit.

The gun (weapon) is an extension of the human will. It can be used for slaughter or for resistance, attack, or defense. When you embrace the concept of the gun being an extension of the human will, you will understand its importance to the human race. It does not matter if you believe in guns or not. The bad guys do, and they understand its importance. They will use it to further their advancement over the corpses of you and yours. It is a cold reality that must be faced; force dictates whose genes carry on and whose turn to ash.

As a whole, humanity needs to want more for their future generations. We are growing stagnant as a species. We have been turned into consumers who live and work to consume the latest junk they have to offer us. Get the new smart phone, get the new watch, get the new car, get the new trendy clothes, but what is the actual cost? We wake up, clock in, and spend our day making others rich. We farm our children out to be indoctrinated because we can’t watch them since we have to make money. Thus, we are creating the next generation of mindless consumers who bow and worship materialism. Is this system really worth fighting/dying/killing for? As of now the world is ablaze with deceit, corruption, and tyranny. Much like a raging fire, it is better to let it consume itself then try and fight it. Sit back, let the flames die down, and wait for the new seedlings to sprout a new beginning.

As a child I would look at the wild animals. They where free and seemed content. They followed a system ingrained in their being. I often wondered, why have humans drifted so far from this simplicity? What has caused us to enslave ourselves to the conquest of materialism and illusions? We need to return back to simplicity, back to family, back to a life of meaning over a life of materialism. The war mongers only care for materialism conquest and the illusion of “power”. To this day i cannot understand how these vermin come into power and control the masses to inflict their psychotic will unto humanity. How do they control the sheep who pile innocents into mass graves? How is it countries who years ago where sworn enemies are now allies? If only all those who died would only realize they were all used. They died for the amusement of their masters– the war makers who create policies, laws, and cease fires at will. How do they control people into butchering each other, as they sit back safe in their suits not missing a meal or feeling the realities of the wars they create? Look at the pictures of the war torn soldiers/civilians/children vs. the “leaders” during/after battles. They send us common folk into the butchery, then contemplate and negotiate with the “leaders” of our “enemies” over a warm meal and some drinks.

Growing up watching the ***”Outlaw Josey Wales”***amazon.com/Outlaw-Josey-Wales-Clint-Eastwood/dp/B003ASLJRC/ref=sr_1_2?s=movies-tv&ie=UTF8&qid=1487131134&sr=1-2&keywords=outlaw+josey+wales, one scene– when Josey rode up to speak with Chief Ten Bears– had a very strong impact on me. It went something along the lines of this: Josey Wales said: “I ain’t promising you nothing extra. I’m just giving you life and you’re giving me life. And I’m saying that men can live together without butchering one another.” Ten Bears said: “It’s sad that governments are chiefed by the double tongues. There is iron in your words of death for all Comanche to see, and so there is iron in your words of life. No signed paper can hold the iron. It must come from men. The words of Ten Bears carries the same iron of life and death. It is good that warriors such as we meet in the struggle of life… or death. It shall be life.” There was no weakness there. Both sides prepared and were willing to fight and die but chose life, which was a direct middle finger to TPTB! Now i understand this was just a movie, but this could actually play out in real life, if we let it. I truly feel humanity is almost there. We are very close to the next step of evolution. Much like a snake sheds its skin, society will have to shed our dead skin, of the takers/deceivers/scum. They have a strangle hold on humanity, and it’s time to fight back. The parasites need to be removed in order for humanity to survive.

Our greatest weapon is our mind. We must load our mind with ammo. We must research past wars, past genocides, past false flags, et cetera. Understand the tactics used and in which they are carried out. We must never let these atrocities happen again. We must understand words mean very little when they come from the mouth of suits, and most important of all we must understand no matter our color or creed, we all share the same enemy. Actions are pure reality. Never again should we stand in line as cannon fodder for our master’s entertainment. One should only die for their family, for protection, preservation, and safety of the one’s whom you love. Let the warmongers fight and die within their own creations. Let the chaos they create consume and destroy them.

We must prep, we must learn survival, and we must master our weaponry, and we will do this with meaning and purpose. We will do this for our blood and for the generations hundreds of years from now. We must be both creator/destroyer. The day may come for all of us good people to have to do horrible things, if we wish to survive. I pray these days never come, that we can avoid conflict. But if/when they do come, we must meet them head on with devouring might. Do not stop until all evil/scum/ deceivers are smashed to ash. Make them pay dearly for their treachery. Until then, feed the mind/body with knowledge and strength. Slowly detach from the system that enslaves us.

I leave you with a writing:

Whirlwinds of Chaos

Embrace the whirlwinds of chaos
Winds of undying destruction
The will to crush and conquer
Far greater than the fear of death/failure
Harness the fire of hatred (controlled burn)
To forge paths unknown
From your path of defiance
The ultimate fruits of labor are born….
The new dawn approaches