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CabinBuilder/Author
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
It's been alluded to many times but perhaps bears repeating in a thread of its own.

Many have in mind grabbing their BOB and BUGGING out. They're going to LIVE OFF THE LAND. Climb up a tree, tie their survival knife on a stick and jump down and stab a wild pig or deer and EAT MEAT for a few days. Eat wild berries and cat tails.

Sounds good in the movies but it ain't gonna happen. 99.99% don't have the skills or wits or area or luck to do this. You'll end up like that McCandless kid up in Alaska. Starving and dead.

Best to have solid REAL preps intact. Better to have 3 months of hidden food storage than to dream of killing wild pigs and eating bugs like Bear Gryllis and Les Stroud do.

I realize I'm preaching to the choir for many here so I'm not talking to you. I'm talking to the Rambos out there and the city variations of Rambos. A friend in southern Kalifornia thinks he's going to go to a lake and get all the water he needs if there's a water shortage or cutoff. Yeah right, he and a million illegals will be competing for that water and it wouldn't be civil. And still thinks he'll be able to go to the grocery store and get his food for his family. Two weeks worth of canned goods in his McMansion pantry are enough for his family of five. Yeah right.

Even if you're under 20 years old and living with your parents. Convince them to get extra food and supplies. If they won't, become a wise person and store some away yourself. Forget the Rambo Fantasy.
 

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Improvise Adapt Overcome!
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I tend to agree. I have been putting a lot of thought into what it would take to live solely off the land the last few months.

Having done some amateurish study of primitive man, and current primitive cultures I have come to the conclusion that primitive man had an extensive knowledge of what plants can be eaten in his territory, how to harvest them, WHEN to harvest them, and how to prepare them to eat or make medicine out of them.

My conclusion is primitive man spent his day casually grazing on plant life, even during his hunts, and gorged on meat later in the day, before going to sleep for the night. His grazing was extensive enough to the point where he got HALF his food intake from it.

So if you are going too try and live a Rambo fantasy, you need to spend a few years gaining mastery of the plant life in your intended living territory. You need to become an accomplished hunter as well. It's not easy to do. I'd add primitive tool making skills as well.

You'd probably spend the equivalent of a full 4 year college program to do it right.
 

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Very good post. I have been trying to get people to listen for years but some just want to play survival. This is more about preparation than it is GUNS GUTS AND GLORY. In real life the other guy shoots back and you are right, you find out there is no game to hunt.
 

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There is a problem with this way of thinking though. It's a consumer way of thinking. I'll buy everything I need and I won't learn any skills because they won't work anyway. The only thing is if you don't learn how to take care of yourself and rely on the almighty dollar to get you out of any situation and that all might dollar suddenly isn't so all mighty you have just screwed yourself. (my that was one long run on sentence)

So, yes, prepare. Buy the stuff you need and hide it, stash it, keep it safe (if that is all possible), but get out there and learn those skills too. Just having stuff doesn't mean a darn thing as you watch your house burn to the ground or you can't change with society and you lose your house and have to carry everything you own in your car.

This doesn't have to be an either/or situation. Learn rambo skills and stock up on what you need. Don't sit around being a consumer instead of a survivor and don't be a rambo with nothing to back you up. Do both and don't get on others who are doing both.

rill
 

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Happiness is 2 at low 8
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...Many have in mind grabbing their BOB and BUGGING out. They're going to LIVE OFF THE LAND. Climb up a tree, tie their survival knife on a stick and jump down and stab a wild pig or deer and EAT MEAT for a few days. Eat wild berries and cat tails...

Damn, now what am I going to do???;);)


You make a very good point, but as alluded to in the previous post, we need to have a combination of preps and skills. Oh how I wish my Dad was still alive. He was a "Colonial Craftsman" at Washington's Birthplace Nat'l Monument in Montross, VA. His job was doing many of the skills around the plantation in 1750 or so (at least that's the time period they were re-creating.) I could learn so much from him regarding how to live without the "modern" conveniences and what tools were necessary vs those that are nice to have. What must you have BEFORE you can make your own. Likewise the skills in and around the house, making candles from beef tallow or beeswax. making soap, spinning yarn from the family sheep and so on...

The preps we put away will, hopefully, get us through that first year or two while things settle out, the weak and unprepared die off and the warriors make their stand. After that we have to be able to work the land, make the tools, the clothes, the infrastructure that will support our families after the supermarkets are gone, there is no gasoline, there is limited electricity if any etc... This is why my "library" consists more along the lines of the Foxfire books, than the wilderness survival books. It's much more likely I'll need to know how to grow wheat and preserve jam than it is to snare a rabbit (at least until I run out of .22 shells)...

It will be interesting for sure. Let's hope it never comes to pass.

Allan
 

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Survival Instructor
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Not Necessarily True

I tend to agree. I have been putting a lot of thought into what it would take to live solely off the land the last few months.

Having done some amateurish study of primitive man, and current primitive cultures I have come to the conclusion that primitive man had an extensive knowledge of what plants can be eaten in his territory, how to harvest them, WHEN to harvest them, and how to prepare them to eat or make medicine out of them.

My conclusion is primitive man spent his day casually grazing on plant life, even during his hunts, and gorged on meat later in the day, before going to sleep for the night. His grazing was extensive enough to the point where he got HALF his food intake from it.

So if you are going too try and live a Rambo fantasy, you need to spend a few years gaining mastery of the plant life in your intended living territory. You need to become an accomplished hunter as well. It's not easy to do. I'd add primitive tool making skills as well.

You'd probably spend the equivalent of a full 4 year college program to do it right.
It doesn't take no 4 years to learn this stuff. All you need is an edible plants field guide in your bug out bag and a small SAS survival guide (pocket version), and just that would be enough to find more than enough food in your area. And if you don't really want to take the time to educate yourself beforehand then just pack a couple of books and bring them with you. ANd just knowing a few edible/abundant plants will keep you alive for a very long time. Like acorns for intance, not very hard to prepare and are all over the south. They have tons of fat proteins etc. So a person can definitely survive withough rations in reserve, but having them makes the exodus to the wilderness easy. So for those of you who want to be lazy about preparing for the worst then just purchase the two books, and learn maybe one or two food sources in your area for various seasons and your transition should not be too painful. Don't count on a small storage supply of a few months or years. Be able to produce your own food w/ seeds and foraging. God Bless!
 

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cute is not always enough
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Many have in mind grabbing their BOB and BUGGING out. They're going to LIVE OFF THE LAND. Climb up a tree, tie their survival knife on a stick and jump down and stab a wild pig or deer and EAT MEAT for a few days. Eat wild berries and cat tails.
Let me first make it clear that I am planning to bug in for emergencies. Now that I have reached the three day and the most of the two week mark for food preps I am working towards the three month mark. I still have a go-bag (more of an INCH bag; I do not call it a BOB because I do not plan to bug out). I agree with you that a Rambo fantasy is not a good plan and will likely just get most people who want to live that dream killed but I think you are doing the BOB a disservice.

I also feel you are doing many of the BOB posts here a disservice as well. Many of them have their BOP, BOV, BOL, and BOB designed to collect their loved ones and get them to a retreat where, as you advise, they have significant resources laid in. They are not refugees; they are moving to safer ground.

Even if you do not believe looters or gangs or fallout will be an issue there are plenty of disasters that have happened for years and will continue to effect hundreds of thousands for years to come. If you house and your preps are under eight feet of water they are no good to you. If a wild fire or accident burns you out and destroys your preps then the preps are no good to you. A tornado could make quite a mess and, while your stuff may be safe in your basement, it is likely the authorities are not going to let you get to it right away. IMHO, a BOB, Go-bag, or INCH bag is vital these emergencies. It keeps you going, takes a lot of the stress off, and allows you to rebuild even if your only danger is camping in a hotel for one night.

I also believe building a BOB is also a very valuable first step for new prepers. Very little in it will be a waste. You can eat your BOB food on your couch. You can use your poncho to cover the windows. TP is TP no matter where you store it. It teaches people to asses their needs and plan for them. You talk about three months of food but you do not mention all the poop that will generate. (Please don not take that the wrong way; I am pretty sure, from your other posts, that you know this and have planned for it.) Beginners need to start slow and learn about all the issues.

What is the cost of a BOB compared to months or years of preps? Almost nothing, IMHO. Not having appropriate flee-gear for your needs is a big hole in your preps because there will surely be events that can force you to abandon everything you have put up.
 

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Crazy old man
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I agree with this post. The one thing I advocate is plan your work and work your plan. If your going to bugout with no place to go,your better to stay home.:cool:
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I certainly wasn't cutting down BOB's Mac.
They are a great and could be vital thing to have.
You're sooo right, a BOB is a terrific first start.
Perhaps you misinterpreted my OP a bit or probably i was unclear and could have stated/worded it better.

There ARE i think many people, probably only a few on this great forum, that believe in the Rambo fantasy. Or that the big white man in the sky will take care of them and rain mountain house foods and tp down on them in their time of need. Or that a new messiah is going to take care of them. Or that they can do what Bear and Les do on TV and live off the land. All this, i consider lumped into the Rambo fantasy.


I don't keep all my eggs in one basket either.
It's good to have your preps in more than one location. Good to have several caches of one type or another. Always good to have backups, be they food, money, fa's, et al.

Good comments about learning the skills as mentioned by Vergeltung, TAngoZero, Birdman and RillRunner. StrtRzr is funny...
and accurate.
 

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Improvise Adapt Overcome!
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It doesn't take no 4 years to learn this stuff. All you need is an edible plants field guide in your bug out bag and a small SAS survival guide (pocket version), and just that would be enough to find more than enough food in your area. And if you don't really want to take the time to educate yourself beforehand then just pack a couple of books and bring them with you. ANd just knowing a few edible/abundant plants will keep you alive for a very long time. Like acorns for intance, not very hard to prepare and are all over the south. They have tons of fat proteins etc. So a person can definitely survive withough rations in reserve, but having them makes the exodus to the wilderness easy. So for those of you who want to be lazy about preparing for the worst then just purchase the two books, and learn maybe one or two food sources in your area for various seasons and your transition should not be too painful. Don't count on a small storage supply of a few months or years. Be able to produce your own food w/ seeds and foraging. God Bless!
Reply]
By 4 years, I mean that would be the minimal time to acquire the depth of knowledge that a primitive who grew up foraging from birth would have, not necessarily what you need to scrape by in a pinch.

Here is the thing, we don't want to prepare just to survive, but to THRIVE! Primitive man thrived in his enviroment. They learned form practically birth how to find food, make shelter, and manage injury and illness.

Today, spending 4 years in a college level course of study would still only give us a fraction of thier survival, and natural living knowledge. Maybe if we went out and actually lived with a primitive tribe after that we can catch up, but all of our knowledge, and skills and abilities are focused on modern survival, to the point where we can no longer live a natural life style because we simply forgot how.

Starting over, and completely re-educating ourselves to live primitively is a monumental undertaking. just packing a couple reference books in your pack is just not going to cut it. The more I am studying just BASIC plant identification, the more I can see this truth.
 

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Sweat more, bleed less!
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I dont think its too far out to guess that over half teh population will die if somthing truly devistating happens.

As i walk through stores or drive down teh road i see people that wouldent last a seccond without there precious electricity and hot water. Makes me wonder how civilized i've become. I makes me want to shut off the power to my home and force myself to live without it for atleast a month...
 

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Improvise Adapt Overcome!
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It would be a good test, or go primitive camping for longer, and longer, and longer stretches at a time.

Back to what I was saying about edible pants. I really feel if you are serious about planing a long term survival program, then you should not just learn a few edibles to get you bye, but instead master over all foraging skills. This would be part one of learning to feed yourself. Part II would be learning to hunt, trap, fish etc...

If you are *Really* serious, then committing the book entire "Botany in a day" to memory is am absolute must. I would start with the first section covering 7 major plant patterns. You can study this section and be identifying over all plant families that same day (hence the name of the book), but you have a long way to go before you are ready to identify specific edibles, and further to go before mastering your foraging skills.

I have said this before, and I will say it again, to do it right requires a 3 step process.

1. mastering plant family identification (Through study of "Botany in a day")

2. Through study of at least 3 area specific foraging books, like "Forage's harvest", and "The Essential Wild Food survival guide"

3. Actual real time field practice with the Peterson field guides to edible, medicinal and poisonous pants (so you know what NOT to eat).

If you follow those 3 steps, sure you will be able to identify and forage some things right away, but all that is a LOT of study, and it would take years to complete...and you still need to work on hunting, trapping, fishing and all that.

Remember, we didn't grow up primitive, and we are no longer children who soak up knowledge like a dry sponge. We need to put forth considerable extra effort just too learn the foundation that comes seemingly naturally to a primitive tribesman.
 

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Let me first make it clear that I am planning to bug in for emergencies. Now that I have reached the three day and the most of the two week mark for food preps I am working towards the three month mark. I still have a go-bag (more of an INCH bag; I do not call it a BOB because I do not plan to bug out). I agree with you that a Rambo fantasy is not a good plan and will likely just get most people who want to live that dream killed but I think you are doing the BOB a disservice.

I also feel you are doing many of the BOB posts here a disservice as well. Many of them have their BOP, BOV, BOL, and BOB designed to collect their loved ones and get them to a retreat where, as you advise, they have significant resources laid in. They are not refugees; they are moving to safer ground.

Even if you do not believe looters or gangs or fallout will be an issue there are plenty of disasters that have happened for years and will continue to effect hundreds of thousands for years to come. If you house and your preps are under eight feet of water they are no good to you. If a wild fire or accident burns you out and destroys your preps then the preps are no good to you. A tornado could make quite a mess and, while your stuff may be safe in your basement, it is likely the authorities are not going to let you get to it right away. IMHO, a BOB, Go-bag, or INCH bag is vital these emergencies. It keeps you going, takes a lot of the stress off, and allows you to rebuild even if your only danger is camping in a hotel for one night.

I also believe building a BOB is also a very valuable first step for new prepers. Very little in it will be a waste. You can eat your BOB food on your couch. You can use your poncho to cover the windows. TP is TP no matter where you store it. It teaches people to asses their needs and plan for them. You talk about three months of food but you do not mention all the poop that will generate. (Please don not take that the wrong way; I am pretty sure, from your other posts, that you know this and have planned for it.) Beginners need to start slow and learn about all the issues.

What is the cost of a BOB compared to months or years of preps? Almost nothing, IMHO. Not having appropriate flee-gear for your needs is a big hole in your preps because there will surely be events that can force you to abandon everything you have put up.

There is one thing you said that bothers me, and it is something that most people of the survivalist mindset do as well, it's this belief that they will not be refugees. All refugees start as evacuees, when you bug out, you are an evacuee, like it or not. Regardless of the situation, you are evacuating your home or starting point. Now the part that bothers me is that so many people close their eyes to the fact that it is very simple to turn into a refugee. All it takes is one fly in the ointment. Something interrupts the well planned escape to the BOL, an earthquake takes out the highway system, flooding, a bridge collapses, vehicle traffic is completely stopped and disallowed. All semantics aside, for what ever the duration of time that everything is interrupted and your plans are DISRUPTED you are a refugee, granted a well prepaired one, but a refugee none the less. You are no longer in control of the situation and have to make due to survive. These are the situations that are going to be problems for most people. Not all natural disasters will supply sufficent advanced warning, nor for that matter will man made situations, add to that the time necessary to get immediate family together to get on the move. These are the situations that need to be "planned" for and on.
How do you plan for the unknown? Things like "follow my lead" as in the big lies I am going to tell, no talking or whining about being tired or hungry while hiking in the brush when there is a clear area but you need to evade. ABSOLUTE authority and chain of command, realizing that there are times that your marriage that up to this point had been 100% equal, no longer is until you are out of harms way. That arguing and discussing can be a danger, but knowing to ask for input and being willing to accept is is also vital. This is the time that all your preps mean absolutely nothing, and it's down to your intellect and intellect alone that will get you through, because you may have lost all your gear, or the gear you have wont do diddly in the situation you find yourself. THIS IS the REALITY of SURVIVAL.
 

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I've run into several of these as well. I've also ran into a couple that seem to have a fantasy of setting themselves up as some sort of war-lord when TEOTWAWKI comes.

Having actually killed a deer with a knife, my experienced opinion is to hell with that. It is a good way to get seriously hurt. When you stick them they flail about like some sort of hell-spawn, all the while grunting and bellering.

I would have to be at the brink of starving before I'd try that crap again.
 

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Wild Edibles Expert
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I often do three day hikes/floats in which I take a small stove, water and spices. Food is what I forage or catch. No MRE's, no cans of sardines, no potatoes in the bottom of the back pack. Fortunately, I know hundreds of wild edible plants so convenient protein is the issue not starch or greens.... usually some fish caught with Vienna Sausage. It is the best little fish bait ever put in a can. If you think earthworms work, try Vienna Sausage.
 
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