Practicing Your Preps

All the guns, ammo and equipment in the world won’t do you much good if you aren’t practiced and prepared to use it. I ran into this many years ago when we were transitioning into our current home. A strong thunderstorm rumbled through knocking out power across the area, no problem I thought as I had already brought the generator, but to my dismay the heavy duty extension cord that I would normally have used to power the refrigerator was not long enough to reach – fail. I thought I was prepared; generator, fuel, cord – but I had not tested the plan. If YOU have a generator, when was the last time you started it? Does it have gas; did you use a fuel stabilizer? The point is you need to test your preps periodically to make sure they will work in a crisis.

Recently I shared an article titled ‘Hey! That’s my water!’ in which the author tested their preps by turning off the water and the challenges they faced and the lessons they learned. Most people really don’t understand how much we take water and power for granted till it’s not there. Personally we have gone for days without power and tested our blackout preps, but I think I would have a really hard time convincing my wife to turn off the water! If suddenly the water supply stopped or was somehow contaminated, how long could you survive?

water 2

One area where I was lacking and I suspect I’m not alone, is in practicing with my firearms. I’m fortunate that I can practice safely on my property and avoid the range fees, but range time can be useful as well. Range time can help you smooth out your technique, dial in the sights or even get some professional instruction, all which are important. Some ranges actually have combat training which can be invaluable in developing your skills. Unfortunately I don’t have access to such a facility here so when I practice at home I like to work on those types of skills; shooting across your body, shooting on the move, etc. Practice, practice, practice; if you’re not properly prepared to use your weapon it might very well be used on you.

target practice 1

Being practiced and confident in your skills can turn a crisis into little more than an inconvenience.

Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.

Happy prepping!

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American Blackout Revisited

With the spring storm season here and the very real threat of storm related blackouts I thought it might be appropriate to revisit Blackout the Movie. This film by National Geographic depicts what might happen should the US electrical grid fail due to a cyberattack. Personally I think it does a pretty good job touching on the reactions of different people to this scenario. The video is free to watch via YouTube.

Hope you find it useful.

Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.

Happy prepping!

When Prepping Pays Off

Storms ripped through our area yesterday leaving thousands in the dark, but not all of us. I have to say I’m very proud of my wife as she executed the plan flawlessly. I was stuck at work 35 miles away when the storm took it’s toll, but she was ready. On my journey home I passed countless downed trees and darkened homes. I admit I was a bit surprised at how few homes I passed showed even a flicker of candlelight – most people were ill prepared for even such a common disruption of power. As I pulled in the driveway my wife met me at the porch with a flashlight, (she rocks) so I didn’t stumble in the darkness. Once inside I had to smile; she had our little LED lanterns strategically placed around the home, a few candles flickering in the main room, and a movie all lined up for me on the PC. Unlike our neighbors, our solar backup along with other preps, made this event a non-event. We were able to enjoy a meal, watch a movie, and go about our normal routine, (mostly anyway) as though nothing had happened. Although she’s always supportive I sometimes got the feeling she was a bit skeptical about my new solar experiment, but no more. We not only survived the storm, but while others sat in the dark, we were unscathed and even learned a lesson or two.

With our society so ill prepared for even common disruptions to normal life, can you imagine how they would react to a real SHTF situation?

Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.

Happy prepping!

Rethinking Our Water Plan

When we selected our property one of the main selling points for us was access to water. The property has 2 streams on it providing access to ‘clean’ water in the event of a ‘grid down’ or other SHTF scenario. Aside from a couple of pallets of bottled water, the streams, with the aid of a couple of gravity filters were to be our primary source of water should the municipal water facility fail. Seemed like a good plan, and continues to be our primary back up, but earlier this year we did discover a flaw – a draught. In the nearly 10 years we’ve owned the property, the larger of the 2 streams had always run strong even in dry conditions – this year was different. The extreme draught conditions we experienced here in the South this past year turned these streams into little more than mud – problem. Our once ‘flawless’ plan revealed a flaw. We have often thought about drilling a well, but in this mountainous area, wells were drying up during this event. Despite the fact that this was an extremely rare occurrence, we had to develop an alternative plan in case the SHTF during a draught.

We watered our garden regularly, but what if the municipal supply failed? Rain barrels are an ideal back up for drinking as well as feeding your garden, but during this time very little water found its way into them and using stored drinking water would prove less than ideal. The draught was so severe that even our trees were dying – in a grid down situation we would be in trouble quickly.

So what to do? A giant water tank was out of reach financially and would certainly draw attention to us in a SHTF scenario. So as simple everyday preppers we’re trying a few different things. Adding a couple of additional rain barrels to store water when rain is plentiful – a friend of ours now drinks only rain water –  will help feed the garden longer during such an event. Adding a couple more 50 gallon barrels of treated drinking water in ‘The Bunker’ will extend how long we can keep ourselves and our animals hydrated, but this along with the bottled water still doesn’t give us the warm and fuzzys. So we’ve begun filling empty 2 liters with water – not the ideal solution; but a simple, cost effective way to add more water storage. Stored on their sides, you can pile up a lot of water in a fairly small area. Sources on the web say it’s fit to drink for 6-8 months, depending on who you believe, and usable for cleaning, washing up, and flushing the toilet long after that. We feel we could probably extend its usable time by running it through a gravity filter for drinking water, and of course using it to feed our thirsty vegetables. This fits easily into our routine as we just add one at a time, no real cost, no real hassle. We’ve also stored 10 2 liters in the chest freezer as an additional back up.

 water

As preppers we all learn from each other and we would love to hear from you what you are doing to protect your water supply.

Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.

Happy prepping!

 

Riots in the street – are you prepared?

With hoodlums rioting in the streets across America we thought it might be a good time to revisit our Top 10 items for any Emergency. So without further delay…

Water – you can’t live without it and you can’t have too much, also consider having a Water Purifier.

Food – basic canned goods along with other longer shelf life products can literally be a life saver. Check out our big incomplete list of items to store:

Medication and basic first aide – any prescription medication that you or your family need plus Baby Aspirin, Band-Aids, gauze, antibiotic creme etc…consider a small First Aid Kit.

Light – getting around a darkened house can be dangerous; a couple of good flashlights, LED Lantern and of course batteries will brighten any situation.

Heat source – particularly in colder climates, a small indoor-safe propane heater can be the difference between life and death when the power goes out.

Propane stove/grill – obviously not all food needs to be warmed/cooked to be edible, but having a camping stove definitely opens the menu a bit.

Fuel – usually becomes scarce quickly and your nifty stove and heater are useless without it.  Also, if you need to ‘bug out’ your vehicle is a lot more effective if it has fuel!

Radio – knowing what is going on in any emergency situation is critical for planning as well as for simple peace of mind. A good AM/FM radio is fine, but I like the Red Cross Hand Crank Radio that you can use to charge your cell phone with.

Firearms and ammo – it many disaster situations looting starts almost immediately; all the supplies you’ve stashed won’t do you any good if you can’t protect them. Please be sure to not only practice using your firearm, but make sure everyone in your family does as well.

Cash – cash is still king, at least for now. I don’t recommend hiding all your money under the mattress, but a few hundred dollars in small bills may buy you out of a jam. We keep a decent stash of cash at home, some in each vehicle as well as a few bucks stashed behind the old cell phone cover.

Yes, there a dozens of other items that could be added to the list, but for now let’s keep it simple. Regardless of what you’re personally preparing for these 10 items will give you a definite advantage over those who simply go through life chasing Pokemon and watching America’s Got Talent.

Happy prepping!

Was massive internet attack just a practice run?

A massive coordinated cyber attack forced hundreds of major companies offline on Friday, including Amazon and Twitter, in what some believe might be a practice run. The attack is said to have come from ‘tens of millions of IP addresses’ likely infected with malware whose owners are probably unaware their PC was even involved. Scary thought.

Some political talking heads are saying it’s a practice run for Election Day, and maybe so; others say it was revenge for cutting off Julian Assange’s internet access, yet another strong possibility. However, a very real and very scary possibility exists that I’m not seeing covered in the media – that it could be the Russians responding to Joe Biden’s threat of a cyber attack on Russia. Remember that just before their invasion of the Ukraine in 2008 and the invasion of Georgia 6 years before that, the former Soviet Union employed very similar ‘denial of service’ attacks. With the current Administration and the Hillary campaign blaming their woes on the Russians, not to mention Biden’s big mouth, would it really be all that surprising?

You may or may not have been affected by the massive interruption of internet services yesterday, but imagine the chaos a full scale attack could cause. Regardless of who is really behind the attack and what their real motive might be, this incident just further demonstrates how fragile our infrastructure really is. Can you imagine the impact on the economy if such an outage went on for a week or even longer? How long do you think the banking system would hold up without access to the internet? How about the electrical grid, water treatment, etc… Not to mention a pampered and overly entitled population ill prepared for any disruption of ‘normal’ life? Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.

Happy prepping!

Germans are leaving Germany ‘in droves’ – Syrian ‘Refugees’ tell them to get out!

Yes, you read that right. According to an article on Zero Hedge, Germans are literally being chased out of their own country by the Islamic immigrants their own elected government felt ‘morally obligated’ to allow in, all without the consent of the people.

“We refugees do not want to live in the same country with you. You can, and I think you should, leave Germany. Why do you not go to another country? We are sick of you!”Aras Bacho 18-year old Syrian immigrant.

You read that right, Syria ‘immigrants’ telling German citizens to get out of their own country. And many Germans are; 138,000 left in 2015 with even more expected to leave this year. Germans are abandoning their homes and neighborhoods in ‘droves’ to escape the increasing violence including an ‘epidemic of rape and sexual assault.’

Americans have long been known for thinking ‘it could never happen here,’ but are you sure? Our own government seems hell bent on importing thousands of these same ‘refugees’ into your neighborhood and again, all without the consent of the people. Europe is losing its culture along with its security – and as we follow the same path can we reasonably expect a different outcome? I for one have always believed that if America was to fall it would come from within. Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.

Happy prepping!