When planning for the unexpected, one of the choices many will make is to ensure you have enough ammunition and firearms to protect yourself. However, is this a good approach?
Admittedly, having a collection of guns and ammo may prove necessary, but there are several other items you’ll need to stock up on when and if the time comes that you go off the grid and must survive on your own.
Most of these items you may have already considered, but there are a few that deserve honorable mention that can make a huge difference when the time comes.
Survival Guides and Botanical Books
You may have never thought that a book or reference guide could save your life, but books on survival and vegetation in your neck of the woods quickly become a vital part of your existence. Unless you’ve spent the last few years practicing for the big bug-out day when and if it comes, there may be several things you either never thought about or have never performed.
Not only will these survival books show you how to start a fire using a flat dried-up piece of wood, a stick, and the strings from your tennis shoes, but they’ll also provide a perfect list of items you’ll need to bring along with you.
Eventually, there may come a time when your food sources are exhausted, and game on the wing or hoof is nowhere in sight. When you ultimately need to live off the land, you should have a firm knowledge of what berries, plants, and roots you can eat and those that can make you extremely sick or bring about a deadly situation.
Whatever region you currently live in, you need to shop around for books on your local botanical environment. These books also provide advice and instructions for creating herbal remedies that deliver remarkable results when applied.
Health and Well Being
When the unexpected happens, all the weapons and ammunition you’ve decided to stock up over the years may help protect you, but they seldom can keep you healthy and clean.
It may not be food or water, but sanitary wipes, several rolls of toilet paper, disinfectant hand wash, and an abundance of bar or liquid soap should be in your stockpile.
At the same time, many understand that things can often occur that create the need for an emergency medical kit to be on hand, but just as many forget that the human body needs a certain level of care to remain healthy. Before the time comes to utilize your stockpile, make sure you’ve stocked up on the necessary self-care products.
Food and Potable Water
At the risk of stating the blatantly obvious, having ample supplies of food and water stockpiled is even more important than your guns and ammunition. However, having vast stores of water and foodstuffs always becomes one of the first problematic issues you’ll need to deal with if and when you find yourself in a situation where you need to move in a hurry.
What typically happens is you end up wrestling with just how much you can carry with you and how to transport more. Perhaps your thought process runs along the lines of when the food runs out; you can bag some more with the weapons and ammunition you lugged along with you.
The key here is to always plan for the unexpected. In this case, the unexpected is that there’s no wild game around for you to shoot at, and instead of strictly rationing your food intake, you managed to consume most of your food stores in a week. You need to understand a few rules about food stock and potable water.
To survive, most, if not all, humans need a minimum of 1200 calories a day to stay alive. The key here is the words – stay alive. A minimum intake of 1200 calories over an extended period may not be healthy for you, depending on your weight, current physical condition, and age.
When stocking your food supplies, remember to stock items with much longer expiration dates and things you can transport without too much awkward effort on your part. Still, most experts believe an average human of good health can live up to two months without food. Just because you can go that long without eating doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll want to do it.
Unfortunately, you can’t say the same thing about water. Most experts agree that an average human can only survive about three days without sufficient water intake. When planning on your bug-out supplies, potable water, and the ability to carry adequate supplies to sustain yourself for extended periods rapidly becomes more precious than your AR15 and a thousand rounds of ammunition. Not only should you stockpile water you can transport at a moment’s notice, but you need to consider stocking up on water filtration tablets.
Even if you manage to find a stream of running water deep in the woods, that doesn’t mean bacteria isn’t swimming about in it. Collect the water and give it a healthy dose of water filtration tablets before you rush in and start drinking your newly found water supply.
Suitable Clothing for the Elements
When the time comes for you to hit the open road and you don’t have a good feel for how long you’ll be out for an extended period, having suitable clothing makes all the difference in the world. Time advances, and seasons change.
Depending on the region you live in, you may jump from summer to winter in a blink of an eye, and you being out and about without the proper protective clothing when the temperature begins to plummet is not only unpleasant, but it’s potentially deadly.
The same goes during blazing hot times where the difference between life and death is how your clothing manages possible heat prostration and how well you manage dehydration.
Now is the time to start stockpiling coats, sweaters, mittens, thermal blankets, and several days of undergarments and multiple pairs of socks. Be sure to include raincoats and, at the very least, a portable umbrella or two.
Also, you’ll want to add a few pairs of dependable footwear, such as hiking boots or even a couple of steel-toed work boots. Whatever footwear you choose, remember that you want something on your feet that can not only take a beating and still hold up but protect you against a possible injury.
Stock What you Need Not Only What You Want
While any bug-out planning should always include stocking up on ammunition for your handgun, shotgun, or AR15, you can see that guns and ammo shouldn’t be the only things you need to start stockpiling. Stockpiles of guns and ammo won’t keep you alive if you don’t have enough potable water to drink, or because of the environment, you’re having difficulty finding a water source.
That pistol you’ve chosen to carry on your hip won’t help when you run out of food and can’t find a food source to shoot and roast over an open fire. Having a shotgun by your side and several boxes of shells can’t protect you from severe weather in your region. Your firearms can neither protect you from the bitter cold of winter nor the blazing summer heat and any condition in between. While it is true that weapons certainly are necessary tools to keep you safe should a dynamic situation ever happen, they won’t feed you, help you remain healthy, heal you if you get sick, and keep you properly hydrated.
Including resource material that shows you how to construct a proper lean-to or build a fire or a water collection system and how to get water from leaves if necessary should be essential items in your stockpile.
Referring to a botanical guide to identify what plants and berries you can eat and which ones to stay away from is more often just as important as your weapons and ammunition.
Remember to stock what you need, not only what you want. By now, you should have realized that there are several things other than guns and ammunition you’ll need to survive off the grid should the time ever come. Think about having fully stocked emergency kits and books to teach you how to survive.
Remember to stock up on compact, easily transported food stores, potable water, a healthy supply of filtration tablets, and protective clothing. All these items are essential things you need to consider stockpiling.
Guns and enough ammunition to service them are, of course, two items you’ll want to ensure you have, but they won’t answer the call to all the challenges you’ll experience when the time comes. Remember that you can’t always shoot your way out of survival conditions such as bad weather, lack of food and water, or severe injury.
Whether you’re in the planning stage or almost finished with your stockpile, think about all the other essential things you need to include, not just guns and ammo, that will ultimately make your survival stockpile complete.
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