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15.12.2014 admin
Providing or seeking shelter is often a wilderness survivor’s first priority after removing themselves from immediate danger. Recently, myself and my fellow instructors set off on a self-imposed week away with very little kit and virtually no food with the intention of effectively practicing what we preach. With no matches, lighter, fire steel or any other method of ignition other than constructing a bow drill (fire by friction) this task was going to take some time and a certain amount of energy expenditure.
Once you have chosen a suitable site, ideally with a couple of suitable trees to act as supporting posts for your main ridge pole, you must consider the prevailing wind direction.
Take some time to properly measure your sleeping area and ensure that your shelter won’t be too small once it’s built.
If you’re up against a time deadline (usually the setting sun) it’s well worth spending what daylight you have left collecting and stockpiling building materials.
With the main structure sound and completed, you can now start adding the thatching materials.
Assuming you have absolutely no sleeping equipment at all, you’ll need insulation from the warmth sapping ground and in cold conditions, external warmth in the form of a fire. A good fire in front of the shelter will provide warmth through the night as well as a means of cooking food, sterilizing water, lighting the darkness and keeping beasties away. The beauty of the Lean To is it’s simplicity combined with it’s effectiveness as a survival shelter. Joe’s book ‘The Wilderness Survival Guide’ is available on Amazon and other well known book shops and fits nicely in your average Christmas stocking. Slings and Slinging: Resources for making and using this ancient survival weapon for hunting and target practice. USA Customers We ship all USA orders via USPS Priority Mail, except as otherwise noted on the website. I like tactical toys like chest rigs with a gazillion magazine pouches riding over a plate carrier, I like ‘em with an integrated pistol belt that holds a large frame semi-automatic pistol and even more magazine pouches.
However, there are some guns that should come fairly early on in your preparedness journey, and that is today’s topic. Shotguns come in several forms, but for my money the pump action is by far the best choice.
One of the things that I like most about a lot of the pump guns is that it is very easy to change barrels. The pump action shotgun is truly a workhorse, and if I could have only one long gun it would probably be my first choice. A good .22 will put rabbits and squirrels in the pot, will take out moles in the garden, is more than enough for most chicken coup raiders, and is a great learning and practice tool for shooters of all skill levels. The next long gun you should look into is a good centerfire rifle in a caliber capable of taking the largest game in your area. Once you have this assortment of weapons and have become proficient with them you can start looking for the more exotic types. I’ve seen a lot of articles that talk about head or heart shots on large game and two legged predators. The sound of racking a round into a pump shotgun also reveals your exact location to any bad guys in the area. As always, anyone shopping for any handgun, how it FITS, your hand alone, is the single best criteria to use when choosing a handgun for protection. I started my comment by listing what guns I had and what they could be used for, especially any that could serve more than one function. With governmental agencies buying up all the ammo, making some ammo scarce and others expensive, having alternative choices is always prudent. The final element I like about the air gun, compared to regular fire arms, is that I didn’t need to register to buy my air gun rifle like I did for my shot gun. Paul, saw Bob give a demo of his shooting skills here in Huntsville Alabama in the late eighties.
Give me a silenced shorty AR in 223, with a Ciener .22lr conversion unit and a silencer for the 223.
Cougar attacks are often predatory but there are a few things you can do to deter them from attacking. Mountain Lions prefer to hunt in the evening and nighttime hours.  During these hours, stay near camp and do not wander around alone. Groups of people seem to deter Mountain Lion attacks too so travel in groups, even when making short trips (e.g. Make loud noises and try to make yourself look bigger by holding sticks over your head or spreading your jacket (Cougars prefer easy prey).
Make loud noises and throw rocks and sticks at the Mountain Lion (aim for the face) until it runs away.
Mountain Lions prefer to attack from behind and when the do attack, they typically try to bite the back of the head or neck.  Do not turn your back on the Mountain Lion nor should you crouch or bend over.
If you have a weapon, use it to poke and stab the animal.  Again, aim for the head and eyes although body shots work if that’s the only target you have available. Once the attack ends, be aware that after an unsuccessful attack, a Mountain Lion may track its prey for several miles.  Be aware.
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How do you protect your home, retreat or homestead if it is underground or if it is of different design and construction than a regular house? Many self-reliant people build homes of unconventional materials such as CONEX container houses, underground houses, earthbag domes or earthship houses to make use of their passive solar features, insulation, low cost, non-flammable properties, or the fact that they provide better hard cover against small arms fire than wood-framed homes. Tactics and strategy for the two scenarios have some differences, but correct principles of home and retreat defense apply to both, so I will lay out some pointers for retreat defense then and list some specific tactics for camps. In addition to making sure that the design of your unique structure does not limit your own mobility, you want to design your shelter, outbuildings fences, fields and unimproved land to deny mobility and tactically advantageous ground to your enemy. Make the most of your materials and construction method starting in the design phase.  Many less-conventional construction materials such as containers, earthen berms, earth domes, earth bags, stone and concrete, are largely non-flammable and highly resistant to small arms fire. With relatively small investments in the design and construction phases, many can non-conventional structures can be engineered and built in a fashion that will enable them to absorb much more kinetic damage than traditional construction. While burning defenders out is an ancient tactic that is difficult to defend against in a wood framed home, defending a home against fire becomes a reasonable goal if you construct your home of primarily inflammable materials such as containers, earth, concrete, brick or blocks. Containers lend themselves to the construction of fort or motor court style homes where an inner courtyard can be enclosed by containers arranged in a square instead. In fort-style structures, outbuildings extend into the courtyard and fields are cleared and planted outside the forts to afford an unobstructed line of sight and fire and provide a firebreak between the dwellings and forested areas. Many underground and earth berm homes have soil rooftops that can be planted with vegetation to prevent erosion.
Subterranean structures are often vulnerable the introduction of water, smoke, gas, accelerants and grenades. Depending on the strength of the enemy you face, it may or may not be advantageous for your home to look like a bunker. Select sites that have terrain obstacles or other obstacles between them and major lines of drift. Prepare fighting positions for pickets behind existing hard cover in positions where they can see the enemy coming from far off and then ambush him on lines of drift with enfilade fire (striking the enemy’s flank to put as many in the line fire as possible) from defilade (positions not observable until they are at the flank.) Then improve your fighting positions by digging them in and camouflaging them. Make sure everyone in your camp keeps your camp’s OPSEC tight and knows their E&E plan and rally point. Use a combination of natural and very well camouflaged improved obstacles outside your perimeter to channel the enemy away from your camp along lines of drift. About the Author Latest PostsAbout Cache Valley PrepperCache Valley Prepper is the CEO of Survival Sensei, LLC, a freelance author, writer, survival instructor, consultant and the director of the Survival Brain Trust.
Always have covered escape routes, grenade sumps and an escape plan with rally points and cached supplies.
There are sure ways to die NOT involving a shelter, Exposure, being caught in the open by an enemy, starvation, carnivorous animal foraging. If you've done something to bring heavy weapons to bear on your retreat it doesn't matter what it is constructed out of, we can turn it into a glass-floored, self-lighting parking lot.
Forts are death traps, armor, aircraft, artillery or overwhelming numbers of infantry, will turn a fort into a kill zone asap. Having an AR-15 (essentially a semi-auto version of the M-16)A  in your survival gun inventory is a good choice regardless of whether you choose a Colt AR-15 or some other brand. That being said, actually choosing the best AR-15 can be a daunting task if you arena€™t familiar with all the options or the vocabulary that has built up around this rifle.
Unfortunately, if you do come across a weapon with these proof marks on it,A  it is an illegal weapon that may have been stolen, or the proof mark itself may have been forged.
Bolt carrier and interior lower receiver of the semi-auto AR-15 versions are milled differently so the fire mechanisms are not interchangeable with the M 16.
Before buying any AR-15, take the time to research it and make sure you know what you plan to use it for. Which manufacturers have the best reputation for dependability, accuracy, quality, and the best price? Do a hands on evaluation of the model AR-15 you plan to own, and shoot with different brands, and types of ammo during the test.
In addition, if the rifle has been tampered with and fires more than 1 shot with each pull of the trigger, it will be classified as an illegal machine gun which could cost you heavy fines, your freedom, and worse.
Is the companya€™s inspection process robust enough to ensure there are no defects in production?
How good is a companya€™s warranty and customer service?A  If the company stands behind their product then they should fix or replace the weapon. To get replacement or spare parts I would try to find them at a good sized gun show that has many vendors that specialize in AR-15s. The first and foremost thing is to know the weapon completely, which can only be done by researching and test firing different configurations of the AR-15. If the dealera€™s or vendora€™s price is too high, and you know it you can try to negotiate down to a more reasonable price. The following table is meant to give you some ideas about the possible configurations and accessories you can buy for the AR-15. Set up a combat course with different types of targets at different heights and distances, and ones that pop up. There is so much wrong with the information in the chart, I don’t know where to start.
Many hill walkers and outdoors folk go equipped for an unexpected night out whenever venturing out into the wilds, carrying lightweight shelter systems, a heat source, warm clothing, energy giving snacks, simple lightweight cooking equipment and water.
Personal challenges such as this are vital for proving, or dis-proving theories, gauging progress and highlighting any areas that need work or improvement. Note the use of dead wood only for ridge pole and rafters with green hazel withy bindings holding everything in place. If left until later in the day, or even the following day, energy levels would be much lower and success looking a bit less of a certainty. If you have a choice then you should aim to have the wind hitting the back of your shelter rather than blowing straight in the open front.
In miserable weather you may need to use it’s cover to shelter during the day too while you cook and carry out other tasks so adequate room to work, as well as sleep is important. Then if night falls annoyingly fast as is usually the case in the woods, you can still cobble something together in semi darkness that should provide adequate protection for the night.
In wild, un-managed woodlands you should have a certain amount of standing or fallen deadwood of all shapes and sizes minimizing the need for a cutting tool (just push them over like a bear then slot them between two sturdy trees and bend, eventually snapping them to the desired length). Expect this job to take almost as long as the structural phase, if you want your roof to shed the rain that is (which is sort of the point). Ground insulation can be as simple as deep layer of springy twigs held in place by a single log acting as a retaining wall, then covered with a good thickness of soft, dry plant material.
A fire radiates heat out in every direction so box it in by building a simple stacked log wall on the far side to bounce most of the radiated heat back towards the shelter. Once the basic principles have been absorbed and understood they can be applied to many other circumstances.
Courses are also available in Wiltshire covering everything from foraging and fire lighting to making buckskin clothing and flint tools.

I like these things a lot, and I can envision a time when all of this might come in handy, but for the moment it’s just FUN! With the wide range of loads available the shotgun is probably the most versatile hunting weapon ever devised. In order to make the most of your pump action shotgun you should have at least two barrels for it. For starters, the ammo is very compact so you can carry or store an awful lot of it in a very small space. It is also an underestimated defensive round, and will put down attackers quite well with good shot placement which you will be able to master with all the practice you are going to do! One of my favorite .22 rifles is the Marlin Glenfield bolt gun I got back in 1980-something when I was 11.
One of my current favorites in the bolt gun category is the Ruger American, which is tough, reliable, fairly economical, and chambered in a number of excellent calibers. To misquote the infamous Gabe Suarez, rifles are good for projecting your will across a distance while pistols are ideal for controlling your immediate surroundings in unforeseen or only vaguely foreseen situations. What you want in a defensive handgun is something powerful enough to put down an attacker with the first hit, is comfortable to carry all day, is comfortable for you to shoot under any circumstances, and is reliable to a T.
I like them because they can provide a lot of small game for food, are useful for personal defense in a pinch, are great for getting varmints out of the garden, coup or orchard, and because you can carry a whole lot of ammo.
But, the truth of the matter is that the small collection I have listed will more than likely be more than enough to see you through all but the most dire survival situation.
From experience; which includes two tours in Vietnam and over 40 years of hunting, nothing puts down a large animal quicker than a severed spine.
I am extremely fond of my Moisin-Nagant that has been sporterized, it’s accurate, effective on anything in North America, and I actually enjoy shooting it.
I would strongly suggest that you contact your local NRA chapter, and get some referrals from them, as they would be more likely to have expertise in that arena. I would suggest that we are far more likely to encounter two legged predators in the wilderness areas than four legged.
With talks about possible government confiscation of guns, my air rifles don’t show up on any government registry. I heartily agree that a 12 gauge of some sort and a decent .22 should be standard home arms. 16 to18 rounds and if you are lucky enough to find an early 70s model they have longer barrels for more accuracy.
Then a silenced .22 takedown autorifle, like the Marlin Papoose, is by far the most likely gun to be of use to you,and far more useful than any LOUD gun. I would not use it for battle [but I’m not looking to go into battle with one either]. Grizzlies are not common in the US, other than in Alaska and Yellowstone, they are non existent. For side-splitting humor, check out Funny Grins' huge cache of funny jokes, zany videos, and outrageous pictures..
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Many readers have also asked about how to defend campsites or improvised wilderness shelters. Some of my pioneer ancestors built their homes and dugouts in a similar fort style when they colonized the West and made double use of the tactic in route by circling their wagons.
A little attention in the design phase can break up the outline of the home, and camouflage it. Compensate for these vulnerabilities making provide good situational awareness and respond to a threat or escape before enemies are able to trap you in an underground shelter. Avoid campsites near key terrain that could be used to locate you, correct fire or pour direct fire down into your camp. Consider whom you will be defending the camp against, their resources and their mode of operations. Most camps are discovered because of a poor choice in bivouac site or a failure of spore (track), scent, light or noise discipline. Force or combat multipliers are specialized equipment and personnel with specialized training who can give a smaller group combat effectiveness equal to a larger one.
Pickets must be able to silently warn the camp of enemy approach so the camp can man a layered defense. All persons in the camp should wear basic SERE gear in their pockets at all times and keep their weapon, battle belt and fighting load carrier or plate carrier and go-bag within arm’s reach. Using trip flares or noisemakers too near your camp will let the enemy know they have found you.
A descendant of pioneers, Cache was raised in the tradition of self-reliance and grew up working archaeological digs in the desert Southwest, hiking the Swiss Alps and Scottish highlands and building the Boy Scout Program in Portugal.
Cowards come home, claim they have been defending the country and then get on their welfare ptsd for life. Much of VN had soil that was ideal for building tunnel complexes though and not all places do. If you are lucky enough to have time to build a shelter you can also take time to set up a line of defense and set fields of fire In any type of fortification you must have at least two avenues of escape and enough cover in them to get clear with enough firepower to pin down any pursuers. You couldn't burn it down with anything short of thermite and they provide better cover against small arms than the crackerboxes most people live in.
My advice is to not do anything that gets you your own dedicated satellite time or UAV mission and don't pick a fight with someone who has exponentially more firepower than you do. Even though these guns may look similar externally, they are very different on the inside and cannot be interchanged safely. This will help you evaluate basic grouping possible, how comfortable you will feel shooting the weapon, and make it easier to figure out which accessories will be most useful. The weapon could be stolen, broken, or may have had some illegal modifications that cause the gun to be more dangerous to the operator than the target. It does not matter whether or not you made the modifications, all that matters is that you own a modified weapon at the time it is found in your possession. Here you can ask questions, physically examine the parts, and get the best prices because of the competition at these shows.
You should be able to talk at the vendora€™s level, and also know the MSRP for all complete ARs, plus the upper and lower receivers that you are shopping for.
Since prices change so much, it is best for you to do your own research, and use the additional column for other notes that will help you find and buy the perfect AR-15 for your needs. As you get better, expand the course and add time limits for each station and number of rounds to be fired at the target while on the move. There is nothing more irritating to have a failure to fire when the weapon is needed the most. It should be noted that I wrote as little as possible about the legal side of owning an AR-15 because what is legal today may not be legal tomorrow. It is not advisable or useful to put yourself in a situation where you have chaos on your hands long before a large scale crisis occurs. No, this means the gun was built to TDP and critical parts like the bolt and barrel were pressure tested. However, if you were unlucky enough to be faced with a night out at the mercy of the elements without any emergency kit then having previously considered a sound strategy, prioritizing your essential needs would be time well spent. Our basic kit consisted of the clothes we stood up in (no Gore-Tex waterproof jackets though), a small belt knife, folding saw, metal cooking pot, 2 metres of strong cord, a cloth bag for filtering water and a small amount of venison. No fire would mean very cold nights with minimal sleep, no way of making the stream water safe to drink, no cooked food.. If you have the means and ability to light a fire then it’s a good idea to angle the shelter slightly to have the wind coming from side on but still from the rear. This seemingly over enthusiastic safety precaution allows for the combined weight of your rafters, your thatching materials, the added weight of the thatch when rain soaked or covered in several feet of snow and also the force of the wind against your makeshift structure.
If you’re lucky enough to have plenty of long, straight timbers then these can be placed almost touching side by side to provide a good, solid roof but when building materials are in short supply, opt for a strong rafter every 30cm and fill the gaps with smaller section stuff.
The basic rule of thumb here is that if your thatching material doesn’t look particularly water resistant then aim for a steeper pitch angle of between 55 – 70 degrees when placing your rafters. Firewood and dry kindling can be kept under the lee of the shelter or in the dry, warm space under your long pole bed. Two Lean To’s facing each other with a fire between them provide a very warm and weatherproof set up for two people.
For many of us, the only shelter improvements necessary were to minimize heat loss by building better, fully enclosed log wall fire reflectors. I like AK-47s, AR-15s, M1As, and just about anything that will take a BIG magazine and send lots of hot lead down range as fast as I can pull the trigger.
The first one should be a field barrel, preferably with multiple choke tubes for different tasks and conditions. Things have been a little weird where .22 ammo is concerned lately, but under normal circumstances it is cheap and abundant. Training and practice are the keys to most things, and for this reason if you are new to shooting a good .22 might be your best choice for a first gun.
Revolvers are a good choice for inexperienced shooters since they are a rather intuitive weapon to operate. My two favorite .22 pistols are an old target model Ruger Mark 1, and an almost as old Taurus revolver. A good SAA often seems to fit well in smaller hands for a heavy caliber revolver, but single actions require a bit more practice to become proficient. The recommended deterrent for black bears is a tambourine and a party horn, Browns are a whole different critter from what I hear!
If not, just use that pistol on yourself if you are charged by a grizzly, and save yourself the misery of being mauled. You are of course correct, and I will begin the process of beating my computer into submission! I also have a shortened, but legal,10 gauge over under that totally eliminates anything in front of me for about fifty feet.
The 22 is the meal maker, and the 44 stuffed with cast bullets for defense, even as limited as even that round can be. Only brain shots stop charges by big animals, so the big magnums are just a waste of your time and money. I can carry .410 and 22lr rounds and have 2 guns (1 long, one pistol) that can fire the same ammo. In some cases, certain container homes may not need a building permit, which can go a long way toward keeping your “hidey hole” hidden. An earth roof and mature vegetation can also help hide the shelter from the air, satellite imagery and IR sensor technology. Regardless of how fast you hose down targets, if you only train standing in one place, on a square, one-way shooting range, you need to improve your training in order to achieve any degree of effectiveness in combat.
Booby traps far from camp slow enemy movement and soften resolve but they are a double-edged sword.
Cache was mentored in survival by a Delta Force Lt Col and a physician in the US Nuclear Program and in business by Stephen R. If you retrofit a modern home with a wood stove or masonry oven, make sure to keep airflow in mind.
Now we are using new generations of thermobaric weapons to great effect, but the older ones essentially turned many complexes into giant deflagrant (low-explosive) bombs.
Unless it hits stud, even a .22LR will go in the front and out the back of many wood framed homes. According to Colt Firearms (the owner and trademark holder of the AR-15) there is no such thing as a legal Milspec AR-15.
You will also have a chance to get good warranty information, and get answers to any other questions that you might have.
These vendors also do internet sales which make it easier to get other parts or accessories as the need arises. Do not be coerced into paying too much for the AR or getting a compromise package on a AR that does not 100% meet the standards or needs that you wanted. So for now – it is my recommendation to stay within the laws and do your best to be ready for any situation that arises. With the right warm and weatherproof clothing, additional improvised shelter might be all that you require but in very cold conditions with inadequate clothing to see you through the night, a quick and effective shelter design requiring minimal energy investment that also allows for additional warming via a campfire would be the order of the day.

Therefore providing effective shelter and warmth using only these few tools and the surrounding natural resources before night fell became an absolute priority.
This should carry the campfire smoke away and prevent a billowing ‘eddy’ of smoke being blown straight back at you all night long. As already mentioned, your lean to will be much more stable if the two main posts are comprised of existing, well rooted trees – far sturdier than two forked sticks dug into the ground.
Contrary to popular belief, each and every rafter does not need to be lashed or woven into place. The more water resistant your chosen thatch, the less steep your pitch needs to be but regardless of what materials you have available, work to a minimum pitch of 45 degrees or you’ll be asking for trouble when the soggy stuff hits. Or if you have enough time and cutting equipment an initial platform of long poles sitting on top of a large log at each end will lift you up off the ground, allowing warm air from the fire to circulate underneath you and providing a comfy ‘bench’ to take the weight off your feet during the day.
Choose your firewood carefully so as to get good, steady heat through the night and ensure you have a good stash close to hand so when you get woken by the cold during the night, all you need to do is reach out and plonk a couple of good logs on with a handful of smaller kindling then drift off to sleep again, warm and cosy. Build the roof on the prevailing wind side higher to over sail the opposite shelter and you have a ‘cowl’ like effect where the fire is protected from the rain but smoke can still escape easily. Opting for a Lean To shelter meant that we had taken care of that need immediately needing no further time spent making something bigger or more fancy.
Make no mistake folks: Your first priority for preps should be securing your food and water supply, making your home capable of sustaining you and yours through whatever may come. Semi-autos, single shots, and double barrels are all fantastic weapons in their own right but the pump gun is the whole package where shotguns are concerned. Next, are there any regional or local favorite calibers, assuring the availability of ammunition? I know a lot of hunters will tell you it is bulky and heavy, but these are a couple features that add to this rifle. They are accurate, they have plenty of knock down power, ammo is cheap, and so are the rifles themselves.
I tend to carry a full-size pistol at all times, whether open or concealed, and my weapon of choice is a Taurus PT92 or an M9. On our homestead, I am as likely to have a .22 pistol on me at any given time as anything else.
Both have 5 ? inch barrels and target sights, and both are deadly on small game at surprising ranges. Not drawing attention is always a key element in a survival setting, and you especially don’t want to announce that you just bagged a rabbit when there are starving people around! I actually have one in addition to my shotgun (home defense), and air gun (small game hunting). I really do think your list of guns for surviving is exactly right and thanks for the info! You hold your 22 pea shooter and strand face to face with a man and an 870 12ga loaded with 00 buck. For a security element to become effective in combat, they must shoot, move and communicate as a unit.
By engaging the enemy with highly accurate fire from beyond the range of his weapons systems, a sniper spotter pair or even a single designated marksman can decapitate an enemy patrol’s leadership or long-range communications, crush the patrol’s resolve by making them take casualties.
They will turn the locals against you endanger or harm their loved ones, so they need to be command detonated … which makes the guy pushing the button a target for snipers, artillery and aircraft. I'm a veteran too and I sure don't feel secure with the people we have wearing the uniforms these days. The greater thermal mass of the masonry or brick ovens holds and radiates heat long after the fire goes out. If you are not able to adapt to the situations presented to you, and dig in and fight to the last grain of salt, you just die. I've seen containers used to good effect, in fact many of our troops live in them and they are glad to have them. If you do buy the AR-15 from a friend second hand, try it out by shooting it at a range to see if it works properly. The shooter must practice regularly so that the act of clearing and reloading becomes muscle memory. Most good manufacturers (Colt, FN, BCM, LMT) build their weapons and parts to these specifications.
To add a further element of difficulty to the proceedings, we were all to complete the week alone increasing the initial workload and raising a whole load more personal challenges. So, although we had all day to provide the essentials, with the need for a fire ranking so highly plus the fact that we were working completely alone, this made the need for a quick but effective shelter all the more important.
Any further away and you’ll need a bigger fire to warm you (which just means collecting more firewood) and any closer and you’ll roast, probably along with the shelter thatch. Look for two correctly spaced trees with sturdy branches jutting out from the trunks at about chest height, facing into the prevailing wind. Use the hooks and protrusions found on most natural materials to your advantage in ‘locking’ the structure together and make sure all rafters over sail the ridge pole by a good margin to avoid collapse when under strain. Thatching materials vary greatly depending on location but are always laid on at ground level and built upwards to allow each layer to overlap the previous one, similar to roof tiles.
This long pole bed will still need a good thickness of dry foliage on top for comfort and insulation. Several Lean To’s in a circle all facing inwards make a group shelter providing almost complete protection from the elements. Instead we were able to begin crafting primitive hunting weapons, make clay bowls, weave food gathering baskets…but that’s another story.
It is also effective against crows, gophers and all manner of critters that might get into your garden or orchard. I like the Mossberg 500 series, and have had good luck with its slightly less expensive cousin the Maverick 88.
The thing is a rock and can pour out a large volume of very accurate fire from its 20-round magazine, and remains an excellent battle rifle as well as a good deer rifle.
The Nagant rifles are easily modernized and sporterized, and make a great addition to your gun safe. This is especially true during gardening season when there is a lot of work that keeps my hands too busy for a rifle, but a lot of critters trying to get at the food I am growing.
I recommend that accuracy be a primary consideration in your .22 handgun, target barrels and good sites are a must. These choices may not be best in all areas or for all users, but in AK they seem to be a good balance and we don’t need so many powders and other loading gear.
The tax, to legally, make your own silencer, from the Feds is $200, and you wait about 6 months for the background check. They should train in a 360-degree environment, in uneven terrain, against an OPFOR (opposing force.) If your group engages in regular, realistic, stressful, dynamic, 360-degree, group training, has competent training and competent leadership, they will enjoy a decisive advantage over most other groups their size, greatly improving the individual odds of survival for each member.
They can even pin down the entire patrol long enough for your group to escape if they engage the patrol from key ground and patrol lacks ready access to air support or indirect fire weapons.
You can catch up with Cache teaching EMP survival at survival expos, teaching SERE to ex-pats and vagabonds in South America or getting in some dirt time with the primitive skills crowd in a wilderness near you.
For those that lost limbs, eyes, or badly burned then I will gladly pay taxes to support, the others can crawl up in the fetal position and die as far as I am concerned. I should point out at this stage, that this was a controlled experiment and we all had provisions within reach in the event of an emergency.
Your ridge pole can sit atop these branches with the weight of the shelter rafters and thatching material pushing it snugly against the trunk. Large leaves, turfs, reeds, bark slabs, spruce and fir boughs, brash wood and leaf litter or a thatching cocktail of all of the above should do the trick. Group shelters allow weaker and more vulnerable group members to be easily observed and catered for. The M1A was the last of the “Rifleman’s Rifles,” bridging the gap between the Garand and the “Black Guns” of today.
But when disaster like hurricanes hit & grocery stores have been stripped bare, having a means to hunt for food becomes just as important as home defense. At the time, issue arms for game officers in bear country [most of the state] was either a .458 magnum rifle or a 12 gauge short barrel shotgun, loaded with slugs and buckshot. For lighter weight the Chiappa Badger 22lr is a wonderful pack gun, cant leave out the AR-7 as well. Night vision equipment can deliver a decisive advantage at night, denying your enemy mobility at night and delivering the same to your group. This makes it necessary to install access points for cleaning, but greatly improves efficiency over the traditional fireplace and will save a ton of money or work putting up firewood.
It’s quick and easy to build (around 90 mins to two hours if you choose the right location), suits many different environments and materials, can be safely heated by a campfire, can often be built without the need for a cutting tool and easily added to if your particular situation requires a larger shelter as the days go on. If time allows, continue bringing the rafters around both sides to stop wind whistling through your bed chamber. The fully enclosed fire draws much more efficiently sending the smoke straight up out through the smoke hole. This one is for home defense purposes; it is quicker handling in tight quarters and gives a wider shot spread at short ranges. Use cast lead, wide, flat bullets, such as HSM Bear Rounds or Buffalo Bore in the heaviest bullet weight you can find. I like the air gun for game hunting because if I miss, I’m not concerned with retrieving the round.
If you need the pistol more than 1-2 x, 1-2 shots each, you’ll be very lucky to survive it.
And the ones getting the jobs with the swat teams and so forth are, u guessed it, veterans perfectly willing to kill children on no knock warrants. Although there are many other shelter designs which look ‘prettier’ the Lean To ticks all the boxes for a shelter to match your survival strategy.
It’s very easy to reach a point where your shelter looks complete from the outside however, an experienced shelter builder judges a weatherproof roof from the inside. Less fuel is used and everyone benefits from the heat of that one fire, thereby sharing the firewood collection. It is also fairly affordable and in my estimation this choice would not ever be a disappointment.
The .308 has the advantage of being a current NATO round, which makes surplus ammo available and assures that in a true meltdown there will likely be ammo around. If you aint serious enough to carry a real fighting rifle, then why bother with some specialized “bear pistol”, hmm? If your chosen trees don’t have convenient supporting branches then you may need to lash your ridge pole in place with strong cordage or improvised bindings such as flexible coniferous tree roots, strips of willow bark or twisted ‘withies’ of green hazel.
If you choose to go further you can pick up specialty barrels for things like turkey hunting, and even rifled barrels to optimize shooting with slugs. Before you all laugh, US Fish & Wildlife did a study comparing actual use of bear spray and actual use of firearms (of all types) on bears, and in every case the bear spray actually worked better.
Guerilla warfare, death from a thousand cuts, works on tyrants and superpowers every time.
Either way, it’s vital to ensure that your main ridge pole is placed on the correct side of the trunk so as to allow the shelter’s weight to push the ridge pole against the trees rather than push it away, thereby putting all the strain on your lashing. There are many short and long term shelter variations all based on the humble Lean To principles. I have also seen You Tube videos showing the effectiveness of small game hunting with sling shots. Leave a good overhang at each end to eliminate any danger of your ridge pole slipping out of it’s mountings.
I’ve always felt that it’s better to learn a handful of useful skills and truly master them than a whole truck load of skills that you haven’t had the time to test and can’t possibly remember. And I believe pellets are more plentiful, transportable and cheaper for small game hunting. Any protruding rafters will catch the rain and channel droplets down the underside to drip onto you all night long.

Primitive hunting and survival rate
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Rubric: Survival First Aid Kit


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