Archive for the ‘survival’ Category

This topic has been discussed on several sites recently,and in comments on other posts on several other sites.

Those who have been responding that yes,you can “easily” live off the land are missing the point.

***The subject/topic /point is…

Can you walk into the woods with just a rifle,whatever ammo you’re carrying with you,and whatever gear you have in your “bug out bag”-and live off the land?***

The answer is-for well over 95%-more like over 98%-99% of people the answer is no.

Here’s why…

You would have only what you brought with you in your pack,only the ammo you carried,only the food,gear,and supplies in your pack.

No cabin in the woods,no endless number of caches,no supply of traps,snare wire,snares,fishing gear,tools,medical supplies,etc. just the shit in your pack.


Caches are great-you should have a lot of them,and have at least two that have the same supplies in them-in case something happens to one.I have three of each.
Caches get dug up by animals,washed away in rainstorms,found by other people,weren’t sealed properly and the contents get ruined,lots of things can and do happen to caches. If you think every cache you hide away is going to be exactly as you left it-you are misinformed. Even when “properly sealed”,shit happens-rodents chew through whatever you buried your stuff in,and it gets eaten or ruined,once a hole is in the cache-insects get in,water gets in,and your stash of gear/supplies is gone-no good.
That would be reality-should you be forced to “bug out” it ain’t gonna happen at a time when you’re already home and ready to go,you ain’t gonna have advance warning,and you probably wouldn’t be going to where your caches of supplies are anyhow. Any number of things could prevent that-snow storms,forest fires,roadblocks,floods,landslides,tornadoes,ice storms that take down so many trees you can’t get through the woods-saw that happen in Tucker county W.Va back in the late ’70’s. There were so many trees down,we could not get to the areas we usually hunt deer. Five of us spent 6 weeks the next summer with chainsaws,axes and machetes clearing a trail. Had to go back in Sept. for another 2 weeks,because part of the trail is national forest land,and we had to get permission and a permit to clear the dead trees.
Lots of things can make it impossible to get to your caches.
There are a very,very few who have the knowledge and skills to live off the land,even fewer who could do so with only what they have in their pack.
Yes,it is possible,yes it can be done -if you have the gear,if you have food cached,if you know the native plant and animal life in the area,if you know how to use traps and snares,if you know how to butcher wild game,if you know how to preserve wild game and fish,if you have more than basic first aid skills…


You would also require access to a wide variety of tools-your latest greatest survival multitool or your 245 tool Swiss Army knife just ain’t gonna cut it,you must have a means to purify/filter water,you would need sewing needles,thread,a Quick Stitch,Awl for All or similar tool for making repairs to packs,tents,leather belts,etc., medical supplies,ammo,spare firearms parts,shelter from rain/snow/sleet/freezing rain/wind/cold/heat/hot sun.

Quick stitch etc…

quick stitch

speedy stitcher

Awl for All

In cold climates-you need a way to keep warm.

You need soap,toothbrushes,tweezers,nail clippers,etc. for personal hygiene,you need clean clothes-especially socks and underwear.

People have commented that you could just tan animal hides and make your own clothes…

You are not going to just start tanning animal hides and making clothing out of them if you’ve never done it before-it will take a whole lot of trial and error,and a whole lot of wasted animal hides.

Then there’s the fact that several different types of knives will be needed-

Think you’re going to butcher rabbits and squirrels with your “survival knife”? Or filet fish with it?

You might be able to hack up a squirrel,rabbit,or fish,and get yourself a meal out of it with your 12″ “survival knife”, but you’ll waste more meat than you use if you’re processing fish and game with your “survival knife”.


Brain tanning ain’t gonna cut it-try it for yourself if you think that’s how you’re going to tan hides to make your fringed buckskins so you look like you’re a mountain man-or whatever-if you have never tried the method,you  have no clue the amount of time,labor-and skill- involved.

The fact is that no,it’s not going to happen for north of 98% of the guys-and ladies out there-there are many reasons why bugging out to the woods and living off the land is not a viable plan.

Not many people have the skills or knowledge to be able to get enough food by hunting ,fishing and trapping to survive. 

Then there’s all the vitamin and mineral deficiencies you will develop in a very short time without access to fresh fruits and veggies.

A few people have made the claim that wild plants contain more nutrients-this is not the case. The plants you find growing wild are often found growing in poor soil,with poor sunlight,inadequate rainfall,and there are many other plants competing for the limited nutrients available.

If you grow your own veggies in your own garden-then those veggies have far more nutritional value than any wild plant. That’s a big part of why us humans starting growing our own plants,rather than foraging for wild plants.

A lot of the veggies and fruits you buy at the grocery store have been bred for looks-not nutritional content-which is why the veggies you grow taste so much better,and have way more nutritional value.

Despite the plethora of claims to the contrary-there are currently zero veggies or fruits grown for human consumption that are “GMO” foods. The only “approved for human consumption GM food is a type of apple-this apple is not currently being produced by any orchard in the U.S.-or Canada.

 The genetically modified  crops that are grown in the U.S.are only used as animal feed,or making ethanol,no vegetable you buy in the grocery store is “GMO”,no packet of seeds you buy to plant in your garden contains genetically modified seeds.

Some facts from unbiased sources on “GMO’s”

Biology Fortified

genetic literacy project

1)  Why foraging for wild plants to provide the nutrients needed from veggies ain’t gonna work.

Growing enough food to survive is very difficult to do now-when we have access to chemical fertilizers-(or if you’re like me,lots and lots of compost and composted manure)-mechanical means of soil preparation,and pressurized water for irrigation.

Go to Kenny’s site-(Knuckledraggin my Life Away)-look at the right of the page,and click on the “Foodgrower” tab. The guy has been growing his own food for his family for a whole lot of years-not just fruits and veggies-all of it-and he was kind enough to share the knowledge he has acquired by growing his own food.

That’s what it takes to grow enough food to feed yourself-and you think you’re going to be just fine by foraging for wild plants?

2) Why you’re not going to be able to harvest enough game to survive by hunting.

Hunting means hunting-not trapping,not using snares-it means shooting critters to eat – for the sake of this discussion.

Please read ALL of the following about game before trying to tell me I’m wrong-and I’m not wrong-think about what I wrote.

The sudden influx of people into the woods will immediately disrupt game patterns-big game like elk,moose and bear will be spooked and skittish,and be seen very rarely. The harvest of these animals will drop to below current hunting season harvests. (Those who have local populations of big game animals are likely far enough away from “civilization” that few people will be in the woods in their areas anyhow,so little will change in those areas.)

Medium sized game like whitetail deer and feral hogs will be spooked as well,both will turn into primarily nocturnal animals.  Unless you have night vision,or lights,very few of these critters will be taken. You may be able to snare a few hogs-problem is they’re very intelligent critters-and will learn to avoid snares as soon as they see one of their fellow hogs get caught in a snare.

As with the big game animals-those who live far enough away from the big cities will not see much change,and would still be able to take deer and feral hogs as needed-at first. It would only be a matter of weeks before people started making their way to those areas.

Small game-squirrels will be least affected by people moving around in the woods,the people moving around will cause rabbits to move,leading to a plentiful harvest of rabbits-and a sudden and drastic reduction in the rabbit population.

Animals like raccoons often carry diseases,and the meat can be unsafe to eat. Same with ‘possums,same with armadillos. Woodchucks/groundhogs would still be semi- plentiful as a lot of people simply refuse to eat them. They aren’t bad,I’ve eaten them,a little greasy,kind of a gamey flavor,but edible-even moreso when you’re starving. Only a matter of time until others figure that out-then there goes the groundhog population.

So,for most of the population,in most of the U.S.,there will simply be very few big and medium sized game animals around to shoot,small game like rabbit numbers will quickly plummet,before long so will squirrels-and birds like grouse,pheasant,doves,quail,and eventually waterfowl.

What will happen in a matter of weeks is that there will be more and more people competing for fewer and fewer game animals.

The only reason big game,medium sized game,small game,and waterfowl are somewhat plentiful now-even overpopulated in many areas-is due to the populations being managed by wildlife biologists from state fish and game agencies,along with the efforts of sportsmans/wildlife conservation groups like Ducks Unlimited,Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation,Pheasants Forever,National Wild Turkey Federation,QDMA,Trout Unlimited,and many,many more national,state,and local sportsman’s/wildlife conservation groups.

For most people,in most of the U.S. people will simply not be able to just head for the hills with a rifle and whatever gear is in the “bug out bag”and live off the land. In a matter of weeks,there won’t be enough game,and there is no longer enough undeveloped land to be able to forage for wild plants successfully-with a very few exceptions.

There’s a reason there are hunting seasons,and limits on how many animals you can legally harvest-it’s to insure that a stable,healthy population of animals exists that allows a sustainable harvest of animals each season by hunters.

Prior to game laws/hunting seasons/bag limits being introduced-initiated by hunters-NOT by government-we were well on the way to having zero bison-(buffalo),Canada geese,ducks,wild turkeys,whitetailed deer,bighorn sheep,antelope,mule deer,elk,moose…

Once these season dates and bag limits are gone-so are a large part of  the animals populations-I’m old enough to remember when almost no one got a deer during the Ohio,Pa and W.Va deer gun seasons,and to remember when seeing a Canada goose or a wild turkey was very rare in Ohio,W.Va,Pa.

The same thing would be the case after a single year-or less – of unregulated hunting. How many people know what the maximum number of deer is that can be harvested from your local deer herd without affecting the population for the next year?

I’ve seen with my own eyes what happens when over 50% of a deer herd is wiped out-it was closer to 75% in one Ohio county due to an outbreak of EHD-(epizootic hemmoragic disease)-we counted 30 dead deer along a 1 mile stretch of riverbank in late summer/early fall of that year. (Deer dying of EHD seek out water just before they die.)

I discussed the outbreak and the effect on the deer population with 2 wildlife biologists,and our local game warden.  For the next 3 years,no does were allowed to be harvested in the areas affected. In theory,that would allow more fawns to be born the next 3 years,and the population to recover quickly. The problem was they didn’t consider the coyote problem-more fawns= more ‘yotes trying to eat them.

Even with that no does restriction-5 years later,and the population of deer is still not fully recovered-it’s getting close to where it was,we hunted that area for a few days this deer season.

Take that example,and use it as a reasonable equivalent for the number of deer taken when a bunch of guys who think they’re gonna live off the land hit the woods.

Will the deer population recover? no,unless no one is killing them for food. Since people would still shoot every deer they could-it would only be a matter of months before the numbers were so low,they would never recover.

So-once all the live off the land guys head for the woods-there won’t be anyone living off of deer,or elk,or moose,or bear meat the following year-because there won’t be enough fawns/calves/cubs born to replace the ones that were killed for food.

Fishing is a great way to get food,it’s like game though,it won’t be long before all the accessible places have no fish left. Unless you live on the coast somewhere and have an ocean to fish in nearby. The great lakes will have fish for quite a while,but anyplace easy to get to will have few fish left in a very short time.

The bigger river systems will have fish for a while,but areas near cities/towns will be fished out quickly.

It’s simple-too many people-not enough fish and game to feed them.

There’s a reason many native American tribes didn’t have permanent settlements and moved around. They followed the fish and game-they fished or hunted for certain things in certain areas-but they didn’t stay until the fish were gone,or there was no game left. They left for another area. Some tribes fished for steelhead in the great lakes-and other fish-at certain times of the year. They stayed until they had caught and preserved enough to last them for a while,then moved on to hunt deer,or bison,or whatever animal.

The people currently planning on bugging out to the woods have no plans to insure that there will be deer for them to eat the next year,or rabbits,or squirrels,or fish for them to catch,they will decimate the fish and game populations very quickly. Same thing with edible plants-there won’t be any the following year,because those eating them picked all of whatever plant and left none for the next growing season.

Quite a few people stated that people lived off the land in the past-which is true-there were also a hell of a lot less people,and a hell of a lot more game animals. There was a lot more forest/woodlands,and very little land cleared for cities and agriculture.

It ain’t the 1800’s,it ain’t the 1920’s,it ain’t the same as when you grew up-there’s a lot more people,and there is not enough wild game to support a large number of people.

So-the hit the woods and live off the land plan-it simply ain’t gonna happen-all the people who have bugging out to the woods to live off the land as their primary bug out plan are in for a very rude awakening.

The only way “bugging out” to the woods make any sense is if you have a house or cabin,or enough property to set up a long term camp on.

What does make sense is to stay put when things go sideways. If you live somewhere where roving gangs of thugs and gang-bangers will be an issue-move. Do whatever it takes-but get out of any area like that ASAP. If you live in a shitty area and have another place to go in case things go sideways-have multiple plans on how to get here-because chances are you aren’t going to just be able to drive out. If you’ll be walking out-plan your route-and actually walk it-with your family/friends,whoever is going with you-so you’ll know if it’s a good route. If it’s not-pick another way to go.

Stay where your food storage is,stay where you have heat-(if you live where it gets cold)-shelter,  a source of drinking water,your first aid/medical supplies,your personal hygiene stuff,your tools,all of your firearms,your ammo supply,seeds for a garden,your canning equipment-and you even get to sleep in your own bed.

In any long term SHTF situation,the first few weeks are the worst-we don’t plan on going anywhere for at least a month to six weeks.

It makes a whole lot more sense to stay put for those first few weeks,because as someone else said-once you’re out of supplies-and a place to live-you’re a refugee.

Heading for the woods and trying to live off the land is still going to make you a refugee-probably a lot sooner than you think.

Living off the land is a whole lot harder than most people think it is,and it would be even harder with more people in the woods trying to do the same thing.

Bugging out to the woods to live off the land is a fantasy-it’s as removed from reality as all the guys who think they’ll instantly turn into some kind of high speed low drag elite forces ninja sniper when SHTF when the only “training” they do is go to an indoor range once a month and shoot a couple boxes of ammo at no more than 100 yards,then go eat pizza and drink beer afterwards while talking about what a great shot they are.



You may have seen pictures on social media or videos on Facebook showing various ways of building a self-feeding campfire. Some people say to build a reverse fire (wood piled largest to smallest), others swear by a horizontal log fire (where you split a long log in half and then build your tinder fire inside the spaced-apart halves of the log). Off all of the schemes I’ve seen, this one, described by former biology teacher turned outdoor enthusiast and YouTuber Bob Hansler, seems the most efficient.

There’s obviously a lot of set-up involved. In the video, Bob stresses that the angle of the feed rails needs to be just right, the logs need to be very straight, spaced properly, and it’s important how you light the tinder fire. While you can tell he certainly has created the ideal conditions, he gets an over 14 hour burn out of his fire, including weathering a downpour of an 1-1/4″, six hours in.


It may seem like a lot of work (and a lot of wood), but anyone who’s ever been camping in cold weather and tending a night fire, knows you don’t get a lot of sleep, and it’s a lot of work throughout the night. I guess a self-feeding fire is just front-loading that work.


One of the YouTube commenters offered a great improvement to the set-up:

Try taking out one side. In it’s place, put large heavy rocks that will keep the logs from rolling towards you. Make sure those rocks aren’t found near water, as they may explode when the heat expands their moisture. That side you took out is where your body will go, perpendicular to the fire. The log side will also act as a wind protector and reflector.


I’m not sure how many people are actually going to build this type of fire under a normal outdoor/camping situation, but the demonstration is interesting and it’s nice to know that you could construct such a fire if a situation were to call for one.

Ebola is Here,Now what?

Posted: October 1, 2014 by gamegetterII in preparedness, survival

There is now a confirmed case of ebola in a Dallas hospital.

The person with ebola arrived here on a flight from Liberia.

Apparently it just makes too much sense to ban all flights from West Africa,and deny entry to any person that was recently in W. Africa.

Since TPTB are such obvious morons,and/or have another reason for allowing a passenger from an ebola infested country to enter the U.S. it’s only a mater of time until ebola arrives in a city near you.

The CDC is supposedly tracking down all the people patient zero had contact with,since they can’t even keep track of viruses in their own labs-I wouldn’t put much faith in their success at finding everyone that is likely infected.

Ever read Stephen King’s book the Stand? See the movie? (movie sucked ass-book was much better)

That’s the type of infection rate and spread we are lookin at here. Since it takes up to 21 days for symptoms to appear,if the CDC misses just one or two people-all bets are off,and there will be no way of containing the outbreak-period-no matter what. Even if the .gov agencies all get together and use all of their people,plus the national guard,they will simply not be able to contain the spread of the disease-someone will get outside of their quarantine area,that someone will infect 10 people,those ten will infect 100,those 100 will infect 1,000,the 1,000 will infect 100,000,the 100,000 will infect a million-then it’s over. If half of the population gets infected,70% plus will die-at least 100 million people will die if ebola spreads outside of the original small number of people patient zero infected.

U.S. hospitals are not equipped to handle an ebola outbreak-period.

Surgical masks will not protect you,the only thing that can protect you is a full hazmat suit with a closed system respirator-and getting far away from any city. Isolating yourself from people is the only way to protect yourself 100%.

Since not all that many of us can do that-things ain’t looking too good for the home team here.

If,by some miracle,the CDC does track down every single person patient zero had contact with,and quarantines all of them-then the ebola virus can be contained.

The CDC has already admitted that there are likely more infected people here-they also admit that they can only hope that they can contain the spread of the virus-not like that’s exactly a news flash to most of us.

Should this happen-there needs to be a ban on anyone entering the U.S. from west Africa,north Africa, and the middle east,since this shit ain’t gonna stay in west Africa,it’s gonna spread to the rest of Africa first,then the Middle East,then Asia and Europe…

Unless…no one is allowed to leave Africa-no one,not by air,not by ship or boat,and the same rules apply across the M.E. as there’s all kinds of people making it into the M.E. from north Africa that are not using commercial transportation.

This is another good reason to seal our southern border-100% -shut it down-no one in until this ebola bullshit has run it’s course.

Since the chances that our border is gonna be sealed are zero to none-and the chances that the CDC tracks down everyone this idiot from Liberia had contact with are about the same-if you have not done so already…now would be a good time to stock up on extra food and water-in case you have to remain in your home for an extended period of time.

Figure at least a gallon per person,per day for drinking water,another gallon per person,per day for cooking, hygiene,and washing pots and pans. Hopefully you have at least 6 months worth of food stocked up-if not,now would be a really good time to do so-before more people wake up to the fact that this shit could be very,very,serious,and have a very,very bad outcome.

Get plenty of fuel for your campstove,unless you have another means of cooking,we have 2 woodburners,one of them is also a cookstove,and enough wood for this winter ready to go-so we have the cooking and heating covered,we have a 1,000 gallon cistern that collects all the rainwater from our gutters,so as long as it rains occasionally,we have a back-up water source.

It would be a good idea to have plenty of candles,and some oil lamps for light,along with a couple camping lanterns,and flashlights. We have hand crank flashlights made by Lifegear,no batteries needed.

Be sure you have extra prescription meds if you must take them,and a well-stocked first aid kit.

Don’t forget your pets-get extra dog food,cat food,whatever.

We can all hope and pray that this shit does not turn into a pandemic,however,I would prefer to be prepared to live in isolation for a few months if need be,than to take my chances going out to get food,water,and medical supplies.

Hunting and Fishing Post SHTF Part II

Posted: September 29, 2014 by gamegetterII in fishing, hunting, prepping, survival
Tags: , , ,

For those who intend on hunting and fishing as a big part of their food supply post SHTF,things will be much different than they are today.

The big game animals near any large city/urban area is going to either be shot out,or very skittish when any humans are in the area.

The farther away from urban areas-the better. There will be fewer people hunting the game,and the game will not be stressed and skittish due to a huge increase in the number of people in the woods.

The areas just outside of the cities outer ring suburbs should be okay to hunt,the game may be pressured and skittish,but as long as there are still signs,the animals are still there. Hunting will be more of a challenge,there will be fewer animals,and they will be even more wary of humans.

The key to taking big game in those conditions will be finding bedding areas,food sources,and water sources,along with the trails/travel corridors used by the game in the area. The best spots to hunt will be near bedding areas,and between the bedding area and water source,second best will be between water source and food source. Once you locate the trails,pick a spot for a blind,using as much of the surroundings as possible,use grasses,branches,sticks,leaves,downed trees,etc. to make a makeshift blind-unless you somehow managed to hang onto a few large pieces of camo burlap.

Pick your spots for your blinds-you should always have more than one,due to wind direction making hunting one location impossible,as long as your blinds are downwind of the direction of the game’s travel,you should be able to take a deer,elk,moose,etc. If the wind is blowing towards the direction game is most likely approaching your blind from-do not use that blind.

Using a compound bow or a crossbow would be the best method to use,if it’s at all possible,gunshots will likely cause game to scatter quickly,as the animals will not be used to the sound of gunfire-unless it’s common in the area due to fighting between groups of people.

One big deer,or an elk or moose will feed a lot of people. Some can be dried to make jerky,some can be smoked,some can be eaten right away. The bigger your group of people to feed,the better off you are hunting big game.

Another animal that will feed a lot of people is feral hogs-we are sure to see an increase in the number of them in any long-term SHTF situation,they multiply very quickly,and become very adept at avoiding humans. The number of them in the U.S. is growing pretty much monthly,with no signs of slowing down. They may be the one animal still available near large urban areas after most people have left.

Small game can be trapped or snared along with being hunted,and can easily feed smaller groups of people,and help feed larger groups.

Air rifles are great for taking small game,they are quiet,and a tin of 250-500 pellets can provide a lot of meals.

Rabbits can be taken in grassy areas when feeding early and late in the day,in winter,if you have a shotgun,you can kick brushpiles and many time a rabbit will take off from the pile.

Ducks and geese can be hunted near decent sized streams,ponds,lakes,rivers and bays,game like pheasants,chukars,quail,partridges,doves and wild turkeys can be taken in woods and in brushy areas. Pigeons can be taken in cities/urban areas-if you end up stuck in one.

Squirrels can almost always be taken in woods containing oak,hickory,beech,and black walnut trees.

You can make jerky out of the bigger small game animals,smoked duck,turkey,pheasant,or quail are very good,and will preserve your food for a while without refrigeration.

Fishing is kind of hard to predict in an extended SHTF situation,if too many people start using gill nets,large seines,and fish traps-the fish will disappear from smaller streams,creeks and rivers,along with smaller reservoirs,and river mouths and the bays where rivers enter big lakes like the Great Lakes,or the ocean.

Big river systems like the Ohio,Mississipi,Missouri,James,St. Johns,Delaware,Susquehanna,Columbia,Snake,Red,etc. should continue to hold large numbers of fish,as there are so many smaller streams that feed the river systems. The fish populations in big river systems will be hard to fish out.

The systems of reservoirs,such as the TVA should also hold plenty of fish for years.

Having a boat,canoe,even a small raft will be a plus.

The freshwater version of a longline-commonly known as a trotline,will be one of the best ways to insure a steady supply of freshly caught fish,there’s sure to be plenty of empty 2-liter soda bottles,bleach bottles and other plastic jugs available to use as floats,both to keep baits off the bottom a little,and as markers,so you can follow your line.

Lines like this can either be anchored to the bank,or allowed to drift if you have a boat of some type. Hooks can be baited with worms,grubs,grasshoppers,crickets,small frogs,clams,mussels,shrimp,cut up pieces of fish,minnows,even entrails from small game.

If you have managed to keep some fishing rods,reels and tackle,you will be able to fish in more conventional ways as well.

The fish should be available much longer than big game animals in urban areas,likely longer than much of the small game as well.

I  do have several spools of fishing line,several hundred hooks of various sizes,snap swivels,3 way swivels,sinkers,floats, and a wide array of lures.

Supplementing your survival food supply with fish and game is a good plan-relying on hunting and fishing as 100% of your survival food supply is a very bad idea.

That’s my opinion on the subject-it will not be like an extended hunting and/or fishing trip,and relying on only fish and game is simply not a good survival plan.


Do more PT !

Hunting and Fishing Post SHTF – Part I

Posted: September 28, 2014 by gamegetterII in fishing, hunting, prepping, survival
Tags: , , ,

I have read tons of articles over the years where people believe that they are going to survive simply by hunting and fishing post SHTF.

There are many things wrong with such a plan,number one being that most people simply do not have the skills needed to harvest enough fish and game to sustain themselves,much less feed a family.

The only scenario where this is a viable plan is when you live so far away from major cities that your location is not going to be overrun by those who have the same plans. Plus you have to have enough actual experience fishing and hunting to be able to catch enough fish,and harvest enough game.

Every area near major cites will have no game left in a matter of weeks,months at best. Fishing is a bit harder to guess,all it would take is a few small groups of people with nets to harvest all fish big enough to eat from a creek,stream,river,or small lake. Once that happens,it will be several years before enough fish big enough to eat return.

Many of those who plan to hunt and fish to survive are in for a rude awakening,they seem to feel that surviving a post SHTF event will be like an extended fishing,hunting and camping trip.

I’ll look at hunting first,starting with big game.It’s not like those who have spent their lives in the city are experienced hunters,of the few who are,the majority of their recent hunting experience is going on guided hunting trips. They are missing a very,very important part of hunting-the scouting,finding travel patterns,trails,knowing what food sources the game uses at what times of year,along with where those food sources are located. Another important thing to know is water sources,along with bedding areas. All north American big game animals,with the exception of bears, are ungulates,they eat mainly grasses and grains. Because of this,they must,no mater what,drink water at least twice a day-that’s why knowing the locations of the water sources for the game you are hunting is so important.

There are simply not all that many people who are going to be able to walk into a new area,whether in the state they live in or another state,and find currently used game trails,food sources,water sources,bedding areas,and know where to set up a blind,stand,or use natural cover to be able to harvest a deer,elk,antelope,bighorn sheep,moose,caribou,etc.

This is a good thing for those of us who do know how to find the right areas to hunt.

The problem is that all the starving people leaving the cites are going to scatter the game,making all the animals skittish. Some will actually shoot and kill some big game animals,most will just scatter the game,those who do take a deer or an elk are most likely going to have no idea how to butcher the animal. It’s not really something you can learn from a book.

Eventually,the city people are going to figure out how to do a deer drive,and will start having some success,that’s when the number of deer,or elk,or moose will drop dramatically.

The problem is that once too many people kill too many big game animals-the population of the animals is going to crash,there will not be enough fawns or calves born to sustain the population.

That will likely occur within 3-6 months. Then that’s the end of being able to hunt big game for food-with the exception of the truly rural areas of the country.

Small game will probably  last a little longer,as there’s more of it,and it’s harder for inexperienced hunters to kill. The inexperience of most of the city people will help the small game to last a while longer than big game. After they shoot a few squirrels and/or rabbits with their A-R’s,they will figure out that they need to be using a .22 rimfire,or shotgun with game loads-shooting a few rabbits with 00 buckshot will have the same effect as shooting them with a .223/5.56.

As with big game,small game populations will crash before long due to over hunting. Same with waterfowl. The waterfowl probably has a better chance-except for the Canada geese hanging around every city park east of the Mississippi-just because they migrate,follow rivers or coastlines,and are hard to hit when flying.

Those who live far enough away from big cities will be able to survive by hunting for much longer for several reasons. There’s more game,there’s more experienced hunters,and there’s fewer people hunting the same herds of game.

This is the only group of people who can survive by hunting both big and small game.

Fishing is a different situation,as long as you have some fishing line,and fishooks,you can catch fish from about any body of water,creek,stream,river,lake,bay,or ocean.

Those in or near big cities,unless on the coasts will have the same problem as with hunting-too many people fishing for what will quickly become too few fish.

Those farther from the cities will have fewer people trying to catch fish,so the populations should remain sustainable for quite a while.

Until people start using gill nets and fish traps extensively,a lot of people can survive on fish,it’s when too many are harvested that the fish will become scarce,and will take several years to recover.

That’s it for part I-in part II, I’ll get into techniques and tactics,along with preserving your harvest.

What to Carry in Your Hunting Pack

Posted: September 18, 2014 by gamegetterII in hunting, survival
Tags: ,

This one is going to address items to carry in your day pack,not a pack for a hunt where you are hiking in and setting up a base camp.

Most of the packs advertised as “daypacks” for hunters are way too small.

I use a 3 day assault pack that my son-in law gave me about 5 years ago,once he was out of the Army.

I’ll start with a list,then discuss how to pack your gear.

  • First aid kit
  • map & compass
  • water
  • thermos of coffee or hot cocoa
  • trail mix+energy/protein bars
  • poncho/rain gear
  • chemical hand/foot warmers
  •  fire starting kit*
  • duct tape-rolled around pencil or similar
  • 5×7 tarp
  • flashlight-not the $1.99 at wally world junk-a quality flashlight
  • gallon size Ziploc bags**
  • rope-at least 8’***
  • fixed blade knife
  • small diamond sharpening stone
  • hatchet or tomahawk
  • folding saw
  • hand pruners
  • 10x binoculars
  • paracord
  • camo face paint
  • camo balaclava
  • extra layers-fleece,sweatshirt,etc
  • complete change of clothes
  • extra pair of socks
  • grunt tube (only during rut)
  • doe bleat can (only during rut)

doe in estrous urine+scent wicks (only during rut)

*  my fire staring kit is a blast match,magnesium block,waterproof matches,bic lighter,fuel tabs for esbit type stove,cotton balls w/vaseline,and a can from .177 cal pellets filled with tinder.

I know it’s overkill,but I started carrying this kit after hunting in the northern Rockies in November,where not being able to start a fire could mean you freeze to death.

**Ziploc bags are for the heart,liver, and tenderloins.

*** the amount of rope depends on a few things,such as the terrain where you hunt,how you prefer to drag your deer,and if you might need it set up a shelter w tarp.

I carry a 12′ length of rope on the outside of my pack,attached so it doesn’t get caught on branches-I carry paracord,so that can also be used to set up tarp shelter.

When you pack your hunting pack,just use common sense-if there’s rain in the forecast,pack poncho and rain gear at top of large compartment,or in one of smaller compartments of pack.

The stuff that is least likely to get used goes at the bottom start with your complete change of clothes,then pack the rest of the stuff according to how likely it is you are gonna need it.

First aid kit,map,compass,fire starting kit,grunt tube,bleat can,etc should all go in outer pockets/compartments of pack.

First aid kit should be where you can reach it easily,I carry mine in my right cargo pocket,along with an epi-pen because I’m highly allergic to bee stings.

When hunting during the rut,your grunt tube and doe bleat should also be where you can reach them easily. I carry the bleat can in my pack until I get to my blind,the grunt tube goes on a lanyard around my neck,or strapped to the sleeve of my jacket.

When hunting in cold weather,I change my socks as soon as I get to my stand or blind-helps keep my feet warm.

I leave one pair of socks near the top of my pack,so I can get to them quickly.

Where you pack your extra layers of clothing depends on weather-if it’s cold,you will be adding layers soon after you stop walking,so pack close to top.

I carry a thermos of coffee with me,in cold weather,I wrap it in my fleeces and sweatshirts,helps it stay nice and hot.

I keep my snack foods in one of the outer pockets on pack.

The hatchet gets strapped to outside of pack. I carry an Estwing hatchet because I know it’s not going to break,and it will stay sharp.

You shouldn’t need folding saw, hatchet, or pruners-unless you have to move your stand/blind because the deer have moved,or the wind is from wrong direction.

If you have to set up in a new location,and don’t have the saw and pruners-you will wish you did,so I’ll put up with the extra 1 to 2# or so.

Make sure your pack is set up so that items are not bouncing off of each other and making noise-also check to be sure nothing is going to snag on brush/branches.

Pack the stuff you use the most where it’s easy to get to,pack the stuff that’s used the least at bottom of pack-make sure nothing makes noise when you walk-that’s really all there is to it.

If for whatever reason,you end up having to spend the night in the woods-you will be glad you brought the fire starting kit,tarp,poncho,rope and paracord,plus the hatchet and folding saw.




Do more PT !

Depending on what and where I’m hunting,I set up my camp’s “kitchen” differently,according to location,and means of transportation.

I’ll start with a camp you can drive to by truck or ATV.

I use the fire for a lot of the cooking,and also take a propane and/or a Coleman stove that will work with Coleman fuel,gasoline, diesel, or kerosene.

I take a 5 gallon water jug-the kind you see on the back of guys work trucks,an old enameled coffee pot, an assortment of cast iron skillets,dutch ovens,a griddle,cutting board,good sharp kitchen knives-(the same Henckels and Wusthof knives I used when I was working as a professional chef)-a pair of long tongs,a couple of spatulas,a rubber spatula,whisk,meat fork,and a set of 3 stainless steel mixing bowls that fit inside each other,the bowls are great for mixing pancake batter,making beer batter if we catch some fish during our down time,whisking eggs to make a big skillet of scrambled eggs,or a bunch of omelettes,plus

the steel mixing bowls,along with a larger enameled one are used to wash dishes.

All this is stored in plastic bins,as is all food that doesn’t need to be in coolers.

We use 3 folding tables. One is 2’x2′ or so,the other two are  about 4’x 2 1/2” each. The stove goes on the 2×2 table,the others are used to chop vegetables,potatoes etc. during actual cooking,and used to set up buffet style for meal times.

This set-up goes under a 10’x10′ pop-up “gazebo” thing the wife found at a local discount store for $50.00,or under an old-school dining fly-the kind that has one pole that rests on the middle of the table. If the location is in an area that’s full of bugs-like the black flies in Canada on spring bear hunts-I use an old Coleman brand screen house that’s 10’x10′.

The reason for bringing all this along is that it not only makes cooking meals faster and easier-if it rains,or is snowing hard-you are sheltered from the weather while cooking.

Plus the tables can be set up as one big card table if everyone’s stuck in camp due to weather.

I have a grill that’s 3’x5′-the kind you find in some campgrounds and public parks,got it when a local campground closed down about 10 years back. It’s just some heavy gauge steel diamond shaped mesh welded to black steel pipe like the type used for gas lines.

Also have a couple smaller versions of the same thing,except I used angle iron in place of the steel pipe to cut down the weight.

These are great for cooking over fires for a lot of people and/or cooking a lot of different foods,in different pans at once-like making bacon,eggs,pancakes,and sausage for breakfast.

When hunting in places we ride in on horseback,the cookware gets cut down to one 18″ steel skillet,one griddle,one dutch oven,1 enameled steel coffee pot,cutting board,1 chef’s knife,1 spatula,1 large fork,1 pair of tongs.

When backpacking in to hunt-all that changes to a backpacking stove,my old Boy Scout mess kit,along with canteen cup that is carried with canteens on my belt,I despise “Sporks”,so I’ll put up with the extra few ounces to carry a fork and spoon in my pack.

Since there’s not much actual cooking,mainly boiling water is all that’s involved when using freeze dried food-Mountain House type, MRE’s ,along with some good quality dried soups,instant coffee,teabags,and hot chocolate packages,I use the backpacking stove that uses a fuel bottle you pump up when using it,as it works better than the type that uses butane canisters. The canisters tend to work poorly in extreme cold,and at high altitudes.

The pump-up fuel bottles work at any temp. and at altitude,plus they can use Coleman fuel,gasoline,diesel, or kerosene. These stoves also are great to have for survival situations,as are the bigger 2 and 3 burner Coleman type stoves that use the same fuels in a tank that you also pump up.



The Importance of Good Boots

Posted: September 9, 2014 by gamegetterII in preparedness, survival
Tags: , , ,

Lately I have run across quite a few guys who have top of the line rifles,packs,tents,sleeping bags and other gear-and they are wearing $29.99 Wal-Mart boots.

I do not have all the latest,greatest gear,or brand new rifles,or camo clothing that costs more than my rifle,or $300.00 knives.

What I do have are a few pairs of boots that are not some wally world garbage-I have 3 pairs of boots,my every day all purpose boots,made by Wenger-the company that makes Swiss Army knives. I found those on sale when I went into shoe store to buy new “tennis” shoes. Apparently they did not sell as good as the Timberlands that all the local gang-banger and gang-banger wannabe crowd wears-they were marked down from over $100.00 to $49.99. This is the second summer I’ve worn these boots pretty much daily,and they show very few signs of wear.

Next is my early season hunting boots-a very old pair of Danner Pronghorn 8″ boots with 400g of Thinsulate insulation.

I will be replacing these next year,as this is likely the last season I’ll get out of these boots-12 years for a little over $100.00 is a hell of an investment.

Last is my cold weather hunting boots,a pair of Rocky Blizzard stalkers I bought in 2002-same year I bought the pronghorns.

The Rocky boots are still in great shape,and will last me quite a few more years,they cost about $150.00 back in ’02,well worth the investment.

Had I bought cheap assed Wal-Mart winter boots in ’02-I would have been replacing them every other year since-and the total would have been far more than the buck fifty I paid for the Rocky’s in ’02.

When you wear cheap boots,you get blisters on your feet,your feet hurt,the boots wear in ways that cause you to walk abnormally,which is bad for your feet,ankles,and knees-plus your lower back.

Remember-when SHTF there will be no running out to wally world to get new boots-buy the best boots you can possibly afford-now,and wear them so they are broken in.

Good boots are as important as having a rifle that works every time you pull the trigger,if you are wearing shitty boots-your feet get all fucked up,you can’t walk right,which means you can not do patrols,you will lag behind on hikes,and it will fuck up your feet,ankles,knees and lower back.

Cut out the soda for a month,or drink less beer,or cut out the high-end beer,or don’t eat out,or skip the local bar for a month-there’s plenty of things most people can do without for the amount of time it takes to save up the $$$ for a good pair of boots.

Do whatever it takes-save the $$$ and get a good pair of boots-or two.

Good boots are as important as the rest of your gear-and more important then a lot of it-do not buy shitty boots-period.





Do more PT !

Choosing the Right Broadhead

Posted: September 7, 2014 by gamegetterII in Archery, hunting, survival
Tags: , , ,

There is a plethora of broadheads on the market,fixed blade and mechanical, 2 blade or 3,even 4. They come in various weights and sizes. Most states have a minimum size for broadheads.

Here are Ohio’s regs-

Longbow: minimum draw weight 40 lbs., includes compound and recurve bows. The arrow tip shall have a minimum of two cutting edges, which may be exposed or unexposed minimum 3/4 inch width. Expandable and mechanical broadheads are legal. Poisoned or explosive arrows are illegal.

(damn-and I wanted to hunt coyotes and groundhogs with explosive arrows)

Crossbow: draw weight no less than 75 lbs. The arrow tip shall have a minimum of two cutting edges which, may be exposed or unexposed minimum 3/4 inch width. Expandable and mechanical broadheads are legal. Poisoned or explosive arrows are illegal.


The broadhead you use should be one that shoots well,and will have enough energy for clean kills from your bow’s draw weight,and the arrows you use.

When I’m using my compound bow-a mid1980’s Hoyt-Easton Gamegetter II- that I have set at a 68# draw weight,I use Easton’s XX75 Gamegetter  aluminum arrows,with a spine-or stiffness- of 340. Look on the box when you are shopping for arrows,there’s a chart on the box that shows what arrows are best for what draw weight bow,weight of your broadhead, and the arrow length you are using.

I’ve been bowhunting since the early 80’s,after lots of experimentation with arrow/broadhead combos,and I do mean a lot-I probably spent enough $$$ on broadheads to buy a new truck-

What I settled on is the  NAP 125 grain Thunderhead. The NAP stands for New Archery Products.

This is the broadhead…


The mechanical broadheads work great with the newer high speed compound bows,as do many of the new fixed blades.

One of the keys is to practice with the same weight target tips as your broadheads,then go to the plastic practice broadheads,and when it’s real close to hunting season,use the broadheads you are gonna hunt with.

It takes a bit of research to make an informed choice when selecting your broadheads,read archery mags,talk to knowledgeable archery techs in your local archery shop-if you’re stuck with a Gander Mountain,Cabelas,Bass Pro Shops-good luck finding any sales staff that has even the slightest clue what the hell they’re talking about. If all that’s in your area is a Wally World-you’re out of luck as far as knowledgeable sales staff.

If you are shooting a newer,high-speed bow,or a crossbow,you can use the 80-100 grain mechanical broadheads,or use fixed blade-I don’t use the mechanicals as they have parts that can fail-if the blades decide not to open,or not to open fully-then you are gonna be tracking a wounded deer for many,many hours.

I know quite a few guys-and ladies who hunt only with the Rage mechanical broadheads,and most have never had one of the Rage mechanicals fail on them-but every once in a while-one fails-you could hunt for years,kill your limit of deer every year,and never have a failure-it’s just my personal preference.

There are advantages to the expandable broadheads-they are more aerodynamic,so more accurate,increases your chances for a clean kill.

There are also 4 blade broadheads,and broadheads with serrated blades. I would consider the serrated blades if hunting elk,moose,caribou,bear,or bison-or if I was hunting African plains game.

Here’s what the serrated blades look like…

The fixed blade broadheads I am referring to are those like the NAP Thunderhead-which have replaceable blades.

There are also fixed blade broadheads that do not have replaceable blades,like this…

Here’s an example of a 4 blade broadhead…

Muzzy broadheads are my second choice,if the Thunderheads are not available,and I need new ones because my son-in-law lost them in the woods when I loaned him my bow.

That’s never a good idea-I no longer loan my bows to anyone-the kid also put a nice long scratch in my muzzleloader’s stock,and a couple new ones on the barrel-that is no longer loaned out either…

One last type of broadhead is the old ones that look kinda like the old native American flint arrowheads,with a small insert that makes them a 4 blade broadhead-here’s a pic of those…

Great source for broadheads…

The best advice I can give anyone,after nearly 35 years of serious bowhunting is to talk to the guys/ladies at the archery shop where you buy your bow,or research your bow online by reading reviews on sites of places like Cabela’s,etc,archery forums, bowhunting forums to find out the recommended arrow types,then match whichever type of broadhead you choose to the type of arrow you choose. I would try at least 3 different broadheads and see which one shoots better for you-some broadheads shoot better for some people than they do for others.

Don’t fall for all the hype and buy every new broadhead that comes on the market-been there,done that,got the t-shirts and hats to prove it.

Once you have decided on a broadhead,stick with it,shoot only the same weight target tips.

Weigh each broadhead when you buy them-the weights can vary significantly,most manufacturers will accept returns on the ones that are way off. Also weigh your target tips-same thing-weights can vary-a lot. Not really worth wasting your time returning the ones that are way off-the postage would cost you more than buying another dozen.

Brands that I’ve used that I would recommend are NAP,Muzzy,Wasp,Rage,and Swacker,stick with brands that have been around a while and proven themselves,the newest,coolest looking stuff usually don’t last long-the companies pop up like ‘shrooms after a rain,and disappear just as fast.

I use some of the blue Loc-tite on my broadheads,so that I don’t have to worry about loose ones,as the vibration from carrying your bow in your truck,and even from you hiking with the arrows in the quiver attached to your bow can loosen the broadhead from the arrow shaft-this is real bad for accuracy,and arrow penetration on game.

One of the reasons I use the Thunderheads is that after I find my arrow,all I have to do is replace the blades,and I can keep using the broadheads,never had anything break or bend on the tips,just had blades break.

Something to consider for the preppers/survivalists-there are steel 2 and 3 blade broadheads available that do not have any of the razor blade type inserts-they are just one piece of  steel,machined or forged,and are reusable and easy to re-sharpen.

Hope this helps someone not have to go through all the shit I went through picking a broadhead-find one that you can shoot accurately,and stick with it-ignore all the hype that goes with every minor change in styles-stick with what works.





Do More PT !







Reblogged this on
May be some guys new to this stuff who will find it to be very useful.
I’m used to humping hunting packs and gear-huge difference…

 Something everyone should read-and understand.
You gotta hump your gear in the field,or you’ll never know if the set-up you have is gonna work-or if it sucks.

Now is the time time find out if your gear and the way you have it set up works-not when you need it,and are counting on it.





(This article is a revision of a series I wrote in the very beginning of the blog, entitled “Equipping the Guerrilla Fighter.” I have been thinking about this subject a great deal, since coming across a “prepper” manual on the subject that, while well-written, and well-intended, was poorly thought out and approached from ignorance of reality. Idealism is seldom a bad thing…unless it fails to be tempered with reality. Instead of focusing on specific items and recommendations, for the paramilitary guerrilla security force dude, or the auxiliary Home Defense guard, or even the underground operative, we’re going to approach this topic from a genuinely conceptual approach, so that anyone can look at it, from genuine Gus the Guerrilla to Polly Prepper, and figure out how to approach the issue from their own perspective and needs, with a systemic approach.

BTW–My apologies for the length. It was 22 type-written pages….J.M.)

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