Dutch Desert Camo Pack

Dutch Desert Camo PackThis Dutch Desert Camo Pack is being sold by my friend Freezedryguy.  Now he is an old Special Forces soldier who spend many years in the military, and knows packs well.  Now I know for a fact that he is currently using one of these packs himself and he only uses the best.  If he says it is a good pack you can bet on it.  You can reach his website by using the links at the bottom of this page or by clicking on his add located on the right hand side of this page. Howard Dutch Desert Camo Pack

Gardening in South Africa When I was a Child

gardeningI have been talking to my father about gardening, when I was a child in South Africa in the 1950’s One thing that most people here would never do is use human manure for fertilizer.  Back then we would take the waste from an out door toilet and dig it directly in the ground to fertilize the garden.  We never put it directly on the plants it was always spread prior to planting.  One thing that I can remember is that we always got a great crop of volunteer tomato plants.

Today I know that most people would never think of using human manure in this manner, however neither one of us could remember anyone getting sick from it.

Another problem that we remembered was that moles were always a big problem, until one of our neighbors told us how to get rid of them.  At that time, my younger brother was still using a baby pot, so as per instructions we would pour the urine in the mole holes.  It worked the moles would move out of the yard.  You might wonder why the human fertilizer didn’t keep them out of the yard, it did at first but the urine smell would go away and the moles would come back.

In recent years, I have poured urine in mole holes in my own yard and the yard is soon mole free.  This really works.

I see many people turn up their nose at the idea of using both of these methods in gardening.  Farmers have used human waste as fertilizer for centuries.  In many countries they still do.  With the knowledge that I have today I would not hesitate to use human manure for gardening, however I would let it compose for a season prior to use.


An 80% solution on time is better than a 100% solution late”

Things New Preppers Need to Know

new preppersFor new preppers the subject often seems to be overwhelming, but in reality it can be broke down in five areas.  These same five subjects work whether your bugging in or bugging out.  To survive you need to be prepared in the following five areas.  These are not listed in the order of importance as this can change depending on where you live, for example in the desert or Alaska.

1, Food – This will include learning about

      • What foods you need to keep healthy
      • How to correctly store your food to keep them at their best.
      • Growing, gathering and hunting both wild and home grown foods
      • Preserving your foods without modern refrigeration
      • How much you need to store, remember that when you are stressed and working hard you will eat more than normal.  Error on the high side.
      • How long are you preparing for?

2, Water – learn the following

      • Where to find water
      • How to store water
      • How to filter or purify water
      • How much water you need to store.  I say as much as you can.

3, Shelter – Work on the following

      • Winter and summer sleeping arrangements
      • Protection from the elements
      • Sources of heat and light
      • How to stay warm, dry and comfortable.
      • Check your clothes and foot gear.

Medical – you need the following

      • A supply of your required prescription medications
      • First aid supplies
      • Nursing supplies
      • Medical books on both modern and herbal remedies
      • Basic medical training

Self defense and security – Know how to protect you and your family

      • Firearms and ammunition – own what you legally can and learn how to use them.
      • Static protection, this includes good locks, doors, alarm systems, what you need to keep burglars or raiders out.
      • Motion detector lights
      • Keeping your mouth shut and not tell others what you are doing.
      • Know the threats you face.

Now all of this applies to new preppers whether you are bugging in or building a pack to bug out. So start by looking at what supplies you already have and see where it fits on the list.  Everybody has something even if it is just your clothes.  Once you see what you already have, determine your priories and start to fill them.  Just take your time learn as you go, but get started.  Many of these subjects are addressed in other posts on this blog, you can find them by using the search function at the top right hand of the page.



Wound Dressing After TEOTWAWKI

wound dressingI see many articles written about treating wound after TEOTWAWKI and most of them are quite good.  But there is one aspect that I rarely see mentioned and that is the type and amount of wound dressings you can go through in a short time.  Most first aid kits carry nowhere near enough dressing to treat a serious wound.

If you have to treat the wound yourself, often the dressings need to be changed daily.  This can require a good backup supply of wound dressing material.  As you know, medical dressings are expensive.  One way you can beat the high cost is to purchase sanitary napkins, see my post, Sanitary Napkins and Their Alternate Uses.   These can make good serviceable dressings.

I would also suggest that you get an early medical manual, World War 2 or before.  Most of them provide much more information techniques for using roller bandages.  Roller bandages often can be purchased inexpensively and can easily be improvised.

The most common manner in which you are likely to have to use a dressing is either wet-to-dry or dry.

Dry wound dressings
Dry dressings are typically some form of gauze pad that is secured to the wound by roller bandages, tape or as a self-adherent bandage with a gauze center like a band-aid.  Dry dressings are simple, inexpensive, and widely available. They generally work well for wounds with small amounts of drainage, but they can stick to the wounds with heavy drainage.  When removing dry dressings that are stuck to the wound, it is helpful to pour some normal saline or warm water over the area to moisten the dressing for easier removal.

Wet-to-dry wound dressings 
By placing a wet (or moist) gauze dressing on your wound and allowing it to dry, wound drainage and dead tissue can be removed when you take off the old dressing.  To create this type of dressing, place a saline-soaked dressing within a wound with drainage. As the dressing dries, it pulls fluids out of the wound.  Wet-to-dry dressings are time-consuming to apply and are generally painful to remove.  Dakin’s solution can be used to wet the dressings.  When removing an old dressing, if it is sticking to your skin, wet it with warm water or saline solution to loosen it.

All of the above is for information only; any wound treatment should be done at the direction of a Doctor.  I am not a Doctor and have not had any special medical training.  Get medical advice.



Dakin’s Solution for the Treatment of Wounds

Dakin’s solution, also called Dakin’s fluid is an antiseptic solution containing sodium hypochlorite and developed to treat infected wounds during the First World War that is still in use.  At that time the stronger germicidal solutions that were available, such as phenol or iodine either damaged living cells or lost their potency in the presence of blood serum.  Dakin’s avoids both problems and its solvent action on dead cells hastens the separation of dead from living tissue.

Dakin’s solution is easy to make and use.

The first thing that you need to understand about Dakin’s solution is that it is unstable and can only be kept for a few days.  The second thing is that it is easy to make from ingredients that every good prepper should have on hand.

Here is a recipe provided by the University of Virginia.

Dakin's solution How to use Dakin’s Solution

Apply Dakin’s Solution onto the injured area by pouring or spraying.  When used on wounds, Dakin’s solution can be poured onto the affected area as an irrigation or cleanser.  It can also be used to wet certain types of wound dressings (e.g., wet to moist dressing).

This solution should only be used once a day for minor wounds and twice a day for heavily draining or contaminated wounds.  Protect the surrounding healthy skin with petroleum jelly to prevent irritation.

Tightly sealed jars of Dakin’s solution may be stored at room temperature up to one month in a dark jar, but once opened; any unused solution should be discarded within 48 hours.

If you are dealing with anything other than a minor injury, all treatments should be done with the advice of trained medical personnel.  I am not a Doctor and have not had any special medical training.  Before using get medical advice.


School Lockdown, How One affected My Family

school lockdown

Students being removed from the school and taken to a secondary location at which they were released to their families.

Recently one of my grandsons was caught in a school lockdown.  This was caused when an illegal alien shot and killed two police officers, wounded a third and one civilian.  One of the officers was shot and killed, and another wounded near the school my grandson attended.  Place County Sheriff’s Detective Michael David Davis who was killed near the school was a good man with a family and did not deserve to die at the hands of an illegal alien.

The shooting caused the high school to go on full school lockdown and to remain in this condition for about 5 to 6 hours.  During this entire time the students were kept locked in their classrooms most without access to water, food or toilet facilities.  Now needless to say this became a problem.  My grandson was one of the lucky ones in that he was in a small separate building with a bathroom attached.  The students in some classrooms ended up using trashcans for toilets.

The high school is now trying to take action to be prepared for this type of event in case it happens in the future. According to an article in the Auburn journal,   dated Nov 12, 2014.

“With hindsight, Placer High educators are now asking for the public’s help to fund lockdown emergency kits in each classroom to help students and teachers more easily get more comfortably through what could be a period of several hours without access to food, water or restrooms.

Placer High has started a fundraising campaign asking parents and other members of the Auburn community for donations to pay for the kits. Each kit – which includes a bucket with snap-on toilet lid, energy bars, water, toilet paper and other lockdown gear – costs $72.

A lockdown kit is designed to aid a classroom of 30 students. Placer High is hoping that donations will fund 70 kits, Assistant Principal Steve Caminiti said.”

Even at the end of the lockdown, the school refused to let the students leave until a responsible family member showed up and signed for them.  This led to long lines and took several hours.

Now this brings up several questions for you, about school lockdowns.

      • Should you include some emergency supplies in your child’s school backpack?
      • Should you encourage your school to stock supplies?
      • What type of a plan does your school have for releasing children to their parents and how does it affect you?
      • If you plan to bug out, how will a delay caused by a school lockdown affect you?

Now I don’t have all the answers, I do applaud the preparedness efforts, even if they are a bit late.  But I still have several unanswered questions; do you include extra supplies with your child and what kind of problems will this cause them, when they pull them out?  My second question is how do I get my child out of school in a timely manner?

As to how getting a child out of school will affect your personal preparedness plans, I have no idea.  But you need to take this possible time delay into consideration, when making plans.  Keep in mind that they had numerous police officers on hand to enforce these rules.

Let us know if you have any ideas.


Solar Powered Lantern from Solarpreppers.com

solar powered lanternRecently I received a solar powered lantern from Solarprepper.com .  It is called the Super Bright LED Lantern LS360 and is obviously made in Asia and probably in China.  The lantern sells on their website for $39.

The lantern has 36 LED bulbs and has several settings allowing you a choice of three levels of illumination.  With all 36 bulbs lit, it is quite bright.  When I first received it I though since it is not US made, it is probably not very good.  So for that reason I have played with it for over a month to try to see if I could break it.  I must admit it has performed well.

I started out by making sure it was fully charged and then turned on all 36 led’s and let it run down.  It gave really good light for about 6 hours and then started to dim.  After 24 hours, it was still giving a very low light so I decided to recharge it.  A few hours in the sun and the lithium batteries were recharged and the light was once again quite bright.

solar powered lanter

With all 36 led’s lit

You can set it to use as few as four led bulbs; in this configuration, it will stay lit for long periods of time.  With just the four bulbs it provides sufficient light for you to walk around and even to read if you hold the lantern close.  The second setting uses 8 led bulbs and provides pretty good light.  The light from the third setting of 36 bulbs is quite bright.

The solar powered lantern does have a hand crank as a backup source of power.  As with most of these, you do a lot of cranking to get much light, but it does work.

It also has an adapter so that you can charge it from a cigarette light or a USB port. The lithium battery stores 1500 MAH of power.

After using and misusing it for a month, I can say that I am pleasantly surprised this solar powered lantern  held up and worked well.  For the price this is a good backup lantern.


Making Kimchi, a Good Probiotic

kimchiI like fermented vegetables, in the past I have made sauerkraut and other mixes of vegetables.  This time I decided to make kimchi, a traditional Korean side dish.  There are hundreds of varieties, but in most, the main ingredient is napa cabbage, radish, scallion or cucumber.

The one that I am making today is the most common and is made with napa cabbage.  It only has a few ingredients but after fermenting for a few weeks it can develop a nice taste.

The ingredients for kimchi are

      • Napa cabbage
      • Salt
      • Crushed red peppers
      • Garlic
      • Daikon radishes optional
      • Green onions optional

Today I am making the basic recipe.  So I start by cutting the napa cabbage into large chunks and placing a layer in the fermenting jar.  I then sprinkle about a teaspoon of salt, and add red pepper and fresh crushed garlic.  The amount of garlic and red pepper will depend upon your taste.  I normally add about 1 clove of crushed garlic per layer and about 3/4 of a teaspoon of red peppers. In my crock, I get about four good layers of cabbage.  This is about two large heads of napa cabbage.

Once these four layers are in the crock, I place the stone weights on top of the cabbage and wait for 24 hours for the water to leach out of the cabbage.  After 24 hours the water will normally cover the cabbage, if for some reason it hasn’t, I will add enough water so that the cabbage is complexly covered.  The mixture then needs to sit and ferment for at least a couple of weeks or longer.


This is the new batch on kimchi in the crock just before i put the stone weights on.

Now the type of crock I am using is a fermenting crock, here is a link that explains what that is, A Fermenting Crock Helps you Make sauerkraut and Preserve Vegetables,  

Here are two other links that will take you to posts on fermenting vegetables.  Making Sauerkraut From Scratch and Making Fermented Vegetables, a Skill that Makes it Easy to Preserve Food.

Kimchi is reputed to be a very healthy food.  It has a high concentration of dietary fiber, while being low in calories. One serving also can provide over 50% of the daily-recommended amount of vitamin C and carotene.

Kimchi is rich in vitamin A, thiamine (B1), riboflavin (B2), calcium, and iron, and contains lactic acid bacteria.  Health magazine named kimchi in its list of the top five “World’s Healthiest Foods” for being rich in vitamins, and aiding digestion.

A study conducted by Seoul National University found that chickens infected with the H5N1 virus, also called avian flu, recovered after eating food containing the bacteria found in kimchi.  During the 2003 SARS outbreak in Asia many people believed that kimchi could protect against infection and while there was no scientific evidence to support this belief, kimchi sales rose by 40%. In May 2009 the Korea Food Research Institute, Korea’s state food research organization, said they had conducted a larger study on 200 chickens, which supported the theory that it boosts chickens’ immunity to the virus.

Try making some, it is easy and tastes good.


Hunting Wild Hogs with a Trashcan

hunting wild hogsA few years ago, I was down by Hollister in Northern California with a bunch of half crazy 4-wheel drive enthusiasts.  Now we were in an area with lots of wild hogs.  They were quite plentiful and some of the group wanted to go hunting wild hogs and do a bit of barbecuing.  Now we were in a no shooting area, so we needed an alternate plan.

With a bit of ingenuity we were able to capture and kill a wild hog with available items.  First, we found an old sturdy trashcan and some leftover chicken.  A couple of holes were punched in the bottom of the trash can and the chicken was then wired to the bottom with some old wire we found.  The trashcan was then laid on its side under a large oak tree.

A rope was thrown over a large branch and a noose tied in one end hanging above the trashcan..  We waited until dark and then watched the trashcan and pretty soon, here comes a nice little wild hog.  He walks right into the can and soon just his butt in sticking out.  He is enjoying the chicken when two of the 4-wheel drivers run up and set the trash can on its bottom, trapping one mad hog with it rear legs in the air..

The noose was then placed over one of the legs and the wild hog was raised up just until its throat was visible.  The throat was then cut and we had hog meat.

Now I don’t know if I would recommend this as a normal method for hunting wild hogs.  However, it does show that with a bit of ingenuity and thinking outside the box you can hunt game without firearms and avoid making a lot of noise.

The barbequed hog was quite tasty.


The U.S Armies CAT Tourniquet

CAT tourniquetA while back I wrote a post on the different types of tourniquets that are currently available and some of their pro and cons, Tourniquets are an Essential Part of Any Good First Aid Kit. Since I wrote that article I have experimented with them and talked to some experienced medical personal.  Base on what I have found I am convinced that the best choice for a tourniquet is the U.S Army CAT tourniquet.  CAT stands for Combat Application Tourniquet.

The following is a Youtube video, that my granddaughter made showing how to use a CAT tourniquet.

As you saw in the video, the CAT tourniquet is easy to apply and will do the job.  It can be used one handed without any special training.  I would encourage you to play with one, when you first get them.  Even though it is simple, there is still a learning curve and a little practice builds confidence.

When you apply a CAT tourniquet, put pressure on until the bleeding stops or you can control it.  You don’t want to shut of all blood flow if you can help it.  Once the tourniquet is in place, leave it on until you get medical help.  Remember that a properly apply tourniquet will cause pain.

CAT Tourniquets are readily available on the internet for varying prices.  Just do a search and you will find them on sale from $14 to almost 50 dollars.  Try to avoid the ones that are made in China. Get ones that are made to US Military Specs, and preferably made in the U.S.  and don’t forget to practice.