The time may be near when preppers will have to break in to those precious food stocks. Ok well we don’t know that for sure, but what if the collapse of society is tomorrow? Are you squared away? Chances are you are not, I don’t know a serious prepper out there that says they are fully ready. You can never have enough food, water, medical supplies, or equipment; or at least for a global collapse that sends us all into the Stone Age.
Really though, what is most likely to happen that requires our preps to be activated; not a collapse or an EMP but more of a localized disaster. A tornado, earthquake, job loss, or power outage is more likely to happen than a national or global disaster. That is what we prepare for the most? You can stockpile stuff for a EMP or other equally horrible event, but if you do then you should be more than adequately ready for the mostly and if you aren’t; you aren’t doing it right.
Now lectures aside. Now all your preps are stored properly and away from moisture and sunlight to keep them lasting a long while, do you ever test them? One thing you absolutely do not want to do is open a can of beans or tuna to find out the seal was bad on them, especially when you really need it. Yes, store bought canned goods can have bad seals also. An example for me is when I opened a can of Chef Boyardee ravioli for my kids and there was a layer of green slime on the top. Remember watch how your MREs are stored in your BOB as well. A friend and I just today took a hike with our BOBs and ate some of the food in them. He had a MRE that had been sitting in his vehicle for a year or so that, though it was still in date, was bad… Let’s just say the cheese spread was the texture of taffy and the Salisbury steak, he contributed the smell to the pile my dog left in the yard before the hike. Other than quality testing of the food, it may be a good idea to test cooking skills in which you have to be “unconventional” in your preparedness and cooking of recipes. It’s funny how a hundred years ago, our unconventional methods were the standard method; did I say funny, I meant sad. Have you tried cooking over a wood fire lately?
You may want to try your technique out before relying on it. With the spring around the corner, camping season will be also. Taking your family camping is the best way to try out fire starting methods, primitive cooking styles, and all around basic survival skills. When I say camping though, I am not talking about taking your camper down to the K.O.A. and hooking up power and water, I’m talking about rustic. You need to camp simulating off the grid living, someplace where you don’t have neighbors 20 feet to each side singing kumbaya. In a real emergency situations you will use whatever you have at your disposal including a camper, so I’m not saying to avoid using it; use your camper on without outside influence. You also should find either a campground that has rustic sites that are away from people or public land that you can camp out for a weekend. Each member of your family should have their BOB and use it. On public land you can take it a step further and get the proper hunting/fishing permits to trap small game or catch fish to eat over the weekend. I do recommend getting the licenses though before you attempt it, last thing you need is a conservation officer ruining the weekend by fining and or arresting someone.
You should try to have a survival skills camping trip with your family every month or two in the warmer months. As your family gets better you could try in the colder months as well. Now if you are just starting out with them, don’t be surprised if you can’t cover everything or even a quarter of it in a weekend. Don’t get short or irritated with them if they don’t get it either, last thing you want to do is turn them off at the whole idea of camping every month by being pissy over their slow learning curve. It is crucial that if you want your family and you to survive a national emergency, that you are all on the same page and being impatient with them will cause more failure than success. Start small with some basics like fire making, cooking over wood fire, water collection, and water purification. Those four skills can be more difficult than the average person realizes, but once mastered, will allow them to eat stored food and drink clean water which I shouldn’t have to tell you the importance of. Your next skills training with them could be shelter building and snare making. There are a lot of skills that you can work on at home on weekends you are not in the woods like knots, map reading, and sewing; so don’t think you have to do all your training outside.
The better you and your family get, the more you can incorporate into these weekends. You could start testing some of your toys like HAM or two-way radios. You should also start putting some trail hiking or off the trail hiking in as well. One day you and your family might just get so good and enjoy living off the land that you never leave the woods. Please share some of your stories or experiences with us and the other readers by commenting below.
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