September 18, 2014 at 11:18 am #24992
Some of the things we ponder and talk about.
“If you aren’t realistic about your skills and your physical abilities, you are likely to be just as dead as the guy down the road who considers the two extra bags of Doritos in his pantry to be a food stockpile.”September 18, 2014 at 11:43 am #24995
The writer is absolutely correct of course.
We have members of our community trail group that ride horses about once a week, but have white-collar and executive jobs. They are absolutely shocked at how exhausted they are at the end of one of our weekend day outings. Just for one instance. Riding on a trail for an hour or so once a week is a lot different than spending 8 hours in a saddle actually working your horse, using his strength to move rocks and logs etc and going up and down mountains and through fast moving, deep streams and small rivers. Mounting/dismounting a ton of times, getting off/on and nailing up boards, chainsawing up logs, clearing brush and trails.
Oh and then there is the shock of the work involved in actually cutting up and cleaning up an actually large felled tree. Had many people over the years want ‘free’ wood in exchange for help – can’t make it until noon and so chagrined they try and insist on paying for wood. I just laugh and tell them I’m happy to have helped educate themselves. You don’t just drop a tree, take the wood you want and leave the freaking rest of the mess. Not on my place anyway.
Won’t even get in to the ‘gardening’/growing food thing other than to say the biggest problem is people have no concept of the AMOUNT of food they must grow/preserve if not in a year ’round great growing climate to feed themselves. much less a family. Have no idea the work that THAT alone entails. Zero. Grow a nice little veggie garden? Good. Now let’s talk about doing it to live off of all year – not a hobby!
Thanks for the article 74September 18, 2014 at 12:03 pm #24997
If you can’t ride a horse for 8 hours they will be in deep trouble walking carrying a bag of stuff. Most folks can’t carry a grocery bag of stuff out to their car from the store. But we aren’t those folks! Walking up a mountain with a heavy pack is another thing though. The link in the article to Graywolf Survival regarding guidelines on amounts of weight that are reasonable for the rest of us to carry is very good.September 18, 2014 at 12:27 pm #25002
<div class=”d4p-bbp-quote-title”>74 wrote:</div>Most folks can’t carry a grocery bag of stuff out to their car from the store.
Yep, park that cart at the curb and move the cart o the loading zone. Why try and use it as an opportunity to get a little more exercise?September 18, 2014 at 1:48 pm #25004
Good article that has true facts about many of us that do not practice everything we think we know.
Garden work is one of them that everyone I talk to will tell me oh I have a lot of seeds and am ready for a SHTF and start a garden for food. Well it is not that easy. First here in Florida the dirt is not great so you need to learn about that. Also just because you have seeds doesn’t mean they will grow. The zone you live is important also the time to plant the seeds. I personally have been gardening off and on since I was 14 with my mother which loves to garden so I learned a lot from her. Soil is something that many that have never planted a garden here in Florida will find them self’s in trouble.
Staying physically fit is another thing that we all need to do everyday. 30 minutes a day will do it.September 18, 2014 at 2:23 pm #25005
I find it amusing when people get caught up on one aspect of any “potential SHTF plan.” If someone says, “I plan on bugging out and heading to the forest” there are all these jerks who crop up and start slamming them as if they were grabbing a bottled water and hiking into nothingness. Choosing a location, the gear and food you take, your skillset, and your comfort level all play into it. There is no exact formula for one’s survival. There are many tools that are available to help someone survive.
Me? Personally? I am more of the opinion that survival is for newbs and weekend warrior types…. I am into thriving rather than surviving. All in the skillset, mindset, and gear/preps. Not like anyone’s solidified plans will actually pan out anyway. Gotta be fluid, baby!!!
Yea… I need coffee.
http://ageofdecadence.comSeptember 18, 2014 at 3:54 pm #25024
Excellent article. Very realistic. It is good to be optimistic and have a positive can do attitude but one still needs to be realistic. We all need to recognize our weaknesses. I am not a warrior at heart and don’t expect I ever will be. I have guns and plenty of ammo and will use them if I need to, but that’s not the skill set that I will bring to whatever group I find myself in post-SHTF. Few people are truly skilled and have the personality for every aspect of survival/prepping. I try to stay fit and am no stranger to hard labor but there is no way my wife is bugging out anywhere by foot if the BOL is more than a mile from here. My plans thus do not assume going anywhere. We are where we are come what may and that was a key consideration when I bought the place I did. Being 61 at this point I am also realistic in recognizing that I am past my prime and that my ability for hard labor isn’t going to increase with time. This is why I have been doing the hard work these past few years of cleaning up and transforming my property into something productive that we might need in the future. It is a whole lot easier and cheaper to go to the farmer’s market for fruits and veggies than it is to be putting in gardens, shrubs, and trees, and then all the work of harvesting and preserving, but if I do it now, we’ll have something to draw upon later when I’m less able to do the work of getting things established. Hopefully I leave something useful here for the kids.
On the gardening & food preservation issue, lots of folks have assumed they’ll have gardens but not many think through how they will preserve the food. There are multiple ways of doing that of course, but if you are going to can, having only a couple dozen jars on hand isn’t going to get you very far. How about lids? Vinegar, salt, sugar?September 18, 2014 at 7:48 pm #25025
I’m not planing on a BOL far away myself. About a mile from here I have a few solutions. But I do intend to be ready to move out to save lives, run, hide and come back another day. I would hate to do it, but my house is a great kill zone if your in it and shooting starts. Everything depends on how many (dependable) sentries we end up with.September 18, 2014 at 8:36 pm #25031
I agree with you about thriving however it is a matter of perspective. I love the outdoors and just being in deep woods or out back make me feel like I’m thriving. On the other hand my wife thinks sleeping on the ground is not happening. Realistically for a prolonged stay out in the woods the more gear you can carry in, the better off you are going to be. A team of pack mules would be nice to have, just like the old miners and trappers used.September 19, 2014 at 12:43 am #25034
TolikSurvivalistSeptember 19, 2014 at 12:59 am #25035
In the city it will be a different game, all BOL will not be close. So it will depend on how the SHTF happens. If it is a fast collapse then it will be a hard fight in the city. If it is a slow collapse I have many plans that will work. My sister lives in Key West which has a small population that knows each other pretty well so I would head that way. There is another location in the Gulf of Mexico in Florida that I can go to, not many people at that location.September 19, 2014 at 5:02 pm #25092
I especially liked the part about planting the first garden and how it was an abject failure. Heh… so was ours. Tried just tilling the soil and planting seeds… got nothing but weeds and anything remotely resembling “food” was scarfed up by critters pretty quick. Had to end up going to the local extension and picking up a bunch of info on how to prep soils, etc. Then decided that our best bet would be a greenhouse. At least that way we’d have veggies, etc, growing year round and we could keep most of the critters out. Even learned how to plant potatoes vertically, using old tires stacked up. Pull off a tire, dig out the potatoes. Pull off another tire, etc.
Cutting wood to stay warm? Well, it would be nice to have a dedicated log splitter, etc. Spend the warm months stockpiling wood next to the house. Anyone ever try to split oak in the winter in minus cold? Heh… good luck with that.
As far as running or humping a ruck miles into the woods, forget it. I humped my last ruck a long time ago, and I am physically incapable of running. Well, I mean if someone’s shooting at me, I could probably haul ass a short distance, but distance running? Especially to keep in shape? Heh… a pipe dream. Physical strength isn’t the problem. It’s endurance.
The older I get, the more I rely on machines to accomplish what I did with muscle 20+ years ago. Digging holes. Tilling. Cutting wood. Yeah, I have hand tools that can do these things, and it is my hope that other members of my family will bug out to here, so the workload is spread amongst several people, instead of just me.
But.. we’ll see. Who knows? I just might start a workout program and get back a little that I lost… that way, I won’t drop dead of a heart attack schlepping a load of firewood into the house.
The wicked flee when none pursueth..." - Proverbs 28:1September 19, 2014 at 8:05 pm #25096
<div class=”d4p-bbp-quote-title”>Tolik wrote:</div>There is a such thing as pack goats , they breed them primarily for wilderness hikers . Each animal can carry about 50 lbs worth of gear . We all know how goats are at foraging .
High UintaPack Goats, great people.
Customers/students of mine.
A lot depends on the individual, me I can hike with a medium pack all.day at my own pace with no issues. But leaning over for a couple of hours gardening, shoot me now. Cutting firewood, axe or chainsaw no problem. But sitting at a desk all day, no good.
Riding a horse for 8 hours? There better be a big bottle of painkillers at the midpoint. Wrong motion/movement.September 20, 2014 at 11:06 am #25113
<div class=”d4p-bbp-quote-title”>Malgus wrote:</div>Then decided that our best bet would be a greenhouse. At least that way we’d have veggies, etc, growing year round and we could keep most of the critters out.
Amen Malgus! My hobby greenhouse was just not big enough (was here when bought the place) so finishing putting up another high tunnel. Every year the weather is getting less and less predictable. About Jan/Feb I have a little bet with myself and see if I can divine some how what the upcoming season’s ‘bug of the year’ will be. So, I am going to concentrate growing food in the high tunnels where I can control things better since I am already fairly dependent on what I grow/raise to eat. My first high tunnel is smaller than this one but I love it and the crops stay cleaner and much more bug free too.
PS Running is an over rated activity anyway. I never liked running – plus I never new when my wonky ankle would give out and I’d suddenly fall ass over tea kettle on my faceSeptember 20, 2014 at 12:03 pm #25117
I used to run a lot and for a while was doing 7 miles a day but those days are long over. I’d be huffing and puffing if I ran a quarter mile today, and if I could go further my left knee would likely start protesting anyway. I used to do some serious bike riding too but the distances, pace, and technical difficulty are now decidedly casual, and I’m in process of hanging up the bikes for good anyway in favor of just walking. All that said I am in pretty good shape for my age and have more stamina and strength (even if it is diminishing) than a lot of guys my kid’s age that never do much hard work or exercise. I may be slowly losing it but an awful lot of young people these days never had it. Come a long term SHTF event I will be able to do my share of the work around here.
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