The Kellogg family has been living here at 1000’s of roots homestead for about 6 months now. We are so thankful to have them living so close and in today’s video, our children share how they feel about the situation. Multi-family homesteading is an unusual circumstance that you don’t often see in this nation today, but we are hoping to encourage others to be open to the idea of sharing land and sharing the journey.

The Kellogg family blog:
Welcome to our channel and thank you for taking the time to watch our vlog. We are a family of 8 living in a 500 sq. ft. off grid home on 20 acres in the Ozarks. We are endeavoring to put in “1000’s of roots” on our land through permaculture design principles. We try to upload videos Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Please leave any thoughts or questions you may have in the comments below. We would love to connect with you! And be sure to subscribe and share us with others who may be interested in our videos.

Thanks again for watching,
Kip, Carrie, and Children


Mail: (No boxes please.)
Kip Smyth
PO Box 68
Ava, MO 65608

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When SHTF, food is definitely a high priority for many preppers. If you’ve ever watched the reality show “Naked and Afraid” you know how important your caloric intake can be in a survival situation.

The average adult needs to consume 2,000 to 4,000 calories daily to maintain a healthy body weight. For those doing the type of manual labor tasks required during a SHTF situation, calorie intake should be on the higher end of that range.

Foraging for wild edibles in the harsh environment of “Naked and Afraid” wasn’t enough to provide the energy needed to accomplish the necessary tasks to survive. Chopping firewood, throwing a heavy fish cast net, building or reinforcing a shelter, even walking the needed distance to get water, was made nearly impossible by lack of energy.

Even when the participants caught fresh fish or were able to kill a pig, they didn’t have the supplies to preserve the leftovers for later. They ate what they could eat that day and several days later their bodies were craving protein again. So, when it comes to post SHTF issues, no matter how much food you have on hand, what food to consume first becomes a critical decision. If you consume the food you have on hand in the wrong order, you risk losing a huge portion of food to spoilage and you risk running out of food before you can get a new source of fresh food established.

Most of us won’t be in the Amazon jungle when SHTF hits. We will be in or at least able to get to a home where we have food on the counter, in the fridge, the freezer, or growing in the garden. Below is the breakdown of what food to consumer first to help ensure your family has food for as long as possible post SHTF.

#1. Refrigerated Food

Your normally refrigerated food should be consumed first. If the interior of the refrigerator remains cold, you need to consume refrigerated food within 6-8 hours. Buying an appliance thermometer for your refrigerator will help you determine if and when the temperature rises above 40 degrees Fahrenheit when the power goes out. If you have meat in the refrigerator, and the temperature goes up too much, you either need to cook it and eat it or smoke it, salt it or dehydrate it in order to prolong its shelf life.

Foods such as butter, fruit juice, condiments like ketchup, mustard, relish, salad dressing, jelly, and barbecue sauce will be still good for a day or two even with the power out.

Prioritize consumption of the following foods if they are in your refrigerator and you cannot get the power back on as they will go bad after just two hours:

  • Poultry, meat, or seafood (cooked or raw)
  • Dairy products such as milk, yogurt, cottage cheese, or soft cheeses like Brie or feta
  • Lunchmeat
  • Pizza with meat toppings
  • Tartar sauce, mayonnaise, or creamy salad dressings
  • Rice, cooked pasta, or potatoes as well as any dishes prepared using these foods
  • Stews, soups, and casseroles

Any food that feels slimy, has a strange color, or feels warm should be discarded. You can check your eggs by floating them in a cup of water. Eggs that sink should be okay, any egg that floats should be discarded.

#2. Fresh Food

Fresh food that has come from the store or has already been harvested from your garden will spoil within just a couple of days, so it should be among the first foods you eat.

Fresh fruit such as bananas and strawberries will spoil more quickly than fruit like apples and oranges. Keep this in mind as you decide what to eat in the first few days following SHTF and eat the most vulnerable fresh foods first.

Don’t just eat what you have a taste for but instead eat the food that will spoil first. Try to make your meals for the first day or two from your refrigerated food that is still good and the fresh food you have on hand.

If you do have a garden that is already producing, and you live in an area that will be quickly overrun by looters, harvest what you can and use your wood cookstove or portable canning stove to can it and get it into your stockpile. Fresh fruits and vegetables from your garden can also be dehydrated using the sun and screens. This way they take up less space, have a longer shelf life, and can become part of your stockpile where they will be at less risk from looters passing by.

#3. Frozen Food

When SHTF, your freezer food is going to thaw pretty quickly if you don’t have available solar power. It helps if you keep your freezer full at all times. If you can’t keep your freezer full of food, fill milk jugs with water and allow them to freeze and take up the extra space in the freezer.

When the power goes out, leave the door closed while you eat your refrigerated and fresh foods in the first day or two. If that cold air cannot escape, it may take 2-3 days for food to thaw. By then, you’ll be ready to start eating it. A full freezer can maintain its temperature for about two days, but that time is cut in half if the freezer happens to only be half full at the time.

An appliance thermometer will let you know when the temperature rises above 0 degrees Fahrenheit. If you don’t have an appliance thermometer, you can also put a cup of water into the freezer and put a quarter on top of it once it freezes solid. When you experience a power outage, keep the freezer door shut. If the quarter is no longer on top of the cup, you’ll know approximately how much thawing occurred by how far it dropped in the cup.

Food with ice crystals in it can be safely refrozen if you can get power back on. After meat thaws however, cook it all thoroughly on your BBQ grill or wood cook stove. If you can keep the temperature in your freezer below 40 degrees, then you still have approximately 36-48 hours to eat it as long as you can keep it cold. You may want to print off copies of these food safety charts for reference in a power outage. If you’ve prepared ahead, you can salt preserve, dehydrate, or can your frozen meat in order to preserve it and give it a longer shelf life.

#4. Stockpiled Foods

The recommended stockpile of food for a SHTF event is 6 months to one year or more. The reason for this large stockpile of food is to give you enough food on hand to eat during the time it may take to produce food from your own garden. The food you have stockpiled that doesn’t require refrigeration should be saved until you’ve eaten all of your fresh and refrigerated foods. Sure, you may use some of your stockpiled flour, rice, or beans to make meals from your refrigerated or frozen foods, but you’ll want to save your canned fruit and vegetables for the time when your fresh and frozen ones have been eaten.

#5. Other Foods

If you have MREs as part of your stockpile, you definitely want to save these rather than thinking of these a food to consume first. MREs are designed to have a longer shelf life so they make a great back up food to have on hand. MREs are good to have in the event that you need to bug out or if you experience a time when making a larger meal just isn’t feasible or safe.


Now that you have a better idea of what food to consume first during a SHTF event, take some time to make sure you have the supplies you need to extend your food supply. Pickling salt and brown sugar are used to make brine and to salt meat so those are great to stock up on.

Canning jars, canning lids and rings, a jar lifter, and a stove that doesn’t require electricity but is sturdy enough for canning are great things to add to your stockpile. Another good strategy is to practice all the different ways of preserving food now, before a SHTF event occurs. The more practice you have, the more confident you will be when preserving food after a SHTF incident.

This content was originally published here.

In the real world, no one is perfectly healthy. Sickness and disease do not choose any particular age, gender, or race. Even preppers are not exempted from the reality of medical conditions.

It is already difficult to live with a medical condition. The situation can become twice as difficult when you are faced with a crisis.

Imagine what would happen if the drug stores were shut down. It is a good thing then that preppers also learn how to stock up on needed supplies like medicines, particularly preventative drugs, so that those in their party with medical conditions can have a good chance of survival no matter what.

Tips for Prepping with a Medical Condition

A medical condition may not be easy to deal with but it is a reality. The key to survival with a medical condition is acceptance.

It could be you or a member of your family who is suffering from a disease or sickness. When faced with a disaster, you have to face it while taking care of the one suffering from the medical condition. Do all that you can, using what you have in order to keep each other alive.

Medical Conditions and Emergency Preparedness

An important part of any emergency preparedness plan that can easily be overlooked is medication. No matter what type of medical condition you have, you don’t want to find yourself in a crisis situation without the proper medication.

Ensuring that your medication is covered by your emergency preparedness plan involves these six steps.

Compile your medical information

This can be cumbersome but is invaluable in the event of an emergency. Having all of your information organized and ready to go makes it much easier to get help for your medical condition if necessary and keep your medication regimen on track. In your medical file you should include:

  • Emergency contacts, including at least one friend or family member that lives at least 100 miles away.
  • Your doctor(s) and other medical providers.
  • A list of the medical conditions you have and medications you take, making sure to include the dosage, frequency, purpose of medication, and the name and phone number of the doctor who wrote the prescription.
  • A copy of the prescription for every medication that you take. You may also want to leave a copy with a national pharmacy chain. If you wear glasses or contacts, include those prescriptions as well.
  • A notation of any sensitivities or allergies that you have.
  • Your immunization history.
  • Information regarding any medical equipment or support systems that you use. Take care to consider things like hearing aids, hearing aid batteries, oxygen, wheelchair batteries, service animals, and the like.

If you have a communication disability, include a note of the best way others can communicate with you.

You should keep all of these records with you emergency preparedness kit as well as with a trusted friend or relative who lives out of town that can be reached in the event of an emergency.

If you feel comfortable doing so, you may also want to scan and email copies of your medical information to yourself so that it can be accessed from anywhere. An alternate suggestion is to store this information in the cloud.

via Medication and Emergency Preparedness – American Preppers Network : American Preppers Network.

A survival situation is not an excuse to give up on those who are weak or suffer from a medical condition. Instead it is a time to prove to yourself and to the world that you have the strength and the will to survive despite all the obstacles.

Remember this, if you were able to live through the hard times and all kinds of survival situations. With your skills, you or anybody else who is suffering from a medical condition will be able to survive.

Life should always be treated with care and respect. Imperfect as people are, we have to keep our focus in times of crisis and stick to the most basic reason for being prepared, that is the preservation of human life: ours and those of our loved ones. Most medical conditions are treatable and manageable even in a survival situation, as long as proper medication is available and proper steps are followed.

Do you have any tips for dealing with a medical condition in times of crisis? Share them in the comments. Then, check out related articles from our site:

The Top 5 Ultimate Medicinal Herbs For Your Bug Out Bag

A SHTF Medical Emergency You Probably Haven’t Considered…

How To Treat Everyday First Aid Issues

This content was originally published here.

This article was originally published by Darnel Fernandez at Natural News. 

A topic that doesn’t seem to be discussed all too often among preppers is preventive health measures. When a prepper talks about health, they usually discuss preparing supplies for injuries after disaster strikes.

Hospitals could be scarce when SHTF, making emergency medical care also scarce. Additionally, most injuries are time-sensitive. Not everyone has the medical expertise to provide emergency care to a variety of illnesses and injuries. This leaves you with a question: Are you healthy enough to survive the next disaster? (h/t to

Preventing poor health

By practicing preventive health and keeping yourself healthy before disaster strikes, you can keep yourself alive until medical resources become available again. As the saying goes: an apple a day keeps the doctor away. Below are three ways to help you get through SHTF healthy and alive:

Practice preventive medicine

The healthier you are when SHTF, the higher your chances of survival. Being in great physical shape can help you protect yourself and your loved ones from any dangers you may come across. Staying in shape before disaster strikes is as simple as having a well-balanced diet, sleeping properly, getting regular exercise, and refraining from smoking and drinking alcohol.

People spend a lot of their time living a sedentary lifestyle. Most jobs involve an excessive amount of sedentary behavior like prolonged sitting, which is known to contribute to various health problems like obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. Even by just taking a walk every day, you can significantly improve your health and prevent these health conditions from happening, especially if you’re in a disaster scenario.

You can also undergo some medical procedures to tackle problems before they get any worse. Imagine having a toothache during a disaster? While you can definitely dull the pain with plenty of natural painkillers and toothache remedies, they are only temporary solutions to a problem that could get worse over time. The odds of being able to find an actual dentist when SHTF is slim to none. Going to one beforehand and keeping up with your oral maintenance can save you all the trouble in the long run.

STDs and pregnancy

In very extreme cases, a major catastrophic event can call for the need for repopulation. However, all of it would be for naught if the children were not healthy at birth. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that pregnant women can still be infected with the same sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) as women who aren’t pregnant. These STDs can complicate the pregnancy and could have serious, long-lasting effects on both mother and child. Gonorrhea, for instance, can increase the risk of miscarriage. In addition, babies born while the mother is infected with this disease can get eye infections that could lead to blindness.

The CDC suggests receiving medical care as early as possible during pregnancy to avoid any health complications.

Lessen dependence on prescription painkillers

Any major catastrophe can lead to the shutdown of many services you enjoy today, which means getting any necessary medication would be close to impossible. In the case of collapse, most stores would be ransacked within the first few weeks. Fortunately, there are plenty of natural painkillers that are significantly easier to get, most of which you can even grow yourself at home. Here are a few of them:

  • Ginger
  • Lavender oil
  • Peppermint oil
  • Rosemary oil

Even things like  and acupuncture can provide alternative therapy to reduce pain. Losing dependence on prescription drugs can help improve your survival, while also keeping you healthy and toxin-free.

Regardless of whether there’s an impending disaster or not, one should still do their best to stay in shape. Preventive medicine can go a long way in keeping you alive when SHTF.

Sources include: 1 2

This content was originally published here.

(Natural News)
Preppers spend a lot of time making plans and preparing for the next big disaster. But no matter how prepared you are, there may come a time when one disaster could send the world into chaos that could change your life permanently. Throughout the history of humanity, civilizations had risen and fallen numerous times. Are you prepared for the next civil breakdown?  (h/t to

One small breeze could topple the foundations of civilization

The term “civilization” is derived from the Latin word civis, which means citizen. In a civilized society, authorities impose rules and regulations to “train” their citizens to remain civilized and prevent bad behavior in fear of punishment. However, if you strip away those rules and let the people run amok, how long would it take for society to collapse back into barbarism and savagery?

The problem with being civilized is that normalcy bias can make people assume that life will remain the same as it has always been. What they don’t know is that any major disaster could potentially lead to a civil breakdown. The Holy Roman Empire, for instance, had multiple factors in play that led to its downfall.

Modern society is exceptionally reliant on the luxuries and comforts brought by technological innovation. If these things were removed, society could very well crumble.

A civil breakdown is more likely to occur when people are extremely dependent on external systems for their survival. One of these systems is the system of distribution.

In times of disaster, plenty of supermarket shelves go empty quickly as people do last-minute shopping to stockpile supplies. What normally happens afterward is that delivery trucks would bring fresh supplies to the supermarkets to restock the shelves. But what if they don’t?

Sponsored solution from the Health Ranger Store: Lab-verified Nascent Iodine solution is a dietary supplement that provides your body with supplemental iodine to help protect your thyroid during radiation exposure. Nuclear accidents such as Fukushima (or nuclear war) can expose your body to radioactive iodine-131, a dangerous radioisotope. Pre-loading your system with stable iodine occupies the iodine receptor sites on your organs, causing your body to naturally expel radioactive iodine you may have been exposed to through air, food, water or milk products. This defensive strategy is recommended by nearly all health authorities, worldwide, including the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Discover more at this link.

For the unprepared, it means that getting food, medicine, and other necessities for survival becomes much more difficult. Some individuals might even resort to uncivilized means like looting to get the supplies they need.

Electricity is another thing plenty of people cannot live without. After all, it powers most devices, gadgets, appliances, and many others. If the grid goes down long-term because of a disaster, businesses and services will cease to operate, halting normal day-to-day activities. (Related: 10 Practical tips that will help you survive a long-term disaster without electricity.)

Another thing that could topple the foundations of civilization is the constant conflict between opposing political ideals, like the current situation in the US wherein the incredible differences of opinion often spark words or actions fueled by hate. These tensions could go into the extremes and cause a sporadic civil breakdown if things are left unresolved.

Surviving the fall

The fall of civilization can be avoided. But, as all preppers know, disaster can bring about unexpected circumstances. Before civilization is brought to its knees completely, there will first be civil unrest. In a dog-eat-dog world, you must be prepared to overcome challenging situations. Here are a few steps you can take:

When the tipping point of civilization does come, chaos will follow. When or where it happens is anyone’s guess. The one hope preppers have is that they have the necessary skills and tools to ride out the struggles and survive.

This content was originally published here.

Survival Gold and SHTF Silver Will Make You A Disaster Target

SHTF Preparedness may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page.

For a long time silver and gold have been the ultimate hedge against the coming financial collapse. It’s astounding how many people believe that we are just a year or two, at most, away from a serious economic collapse.    

You cannot go a week without some investor talking about why and how the economic collapse is going to appear. 

Gold and silver are always the answer to the economic collapse. You see, we all worry about losing money in one way or another in that collapse. Maybe its the value of the house, maybe its the stock market, maybe it’s the dollar’s value that puts us in a bad situation. 

Gold is a big deal and has many benefits. Its been currency forever and appears as such in books as old as the bible. Its a very valuable metal and there are tremendous means to use it. It’s a little high in price so it’s not the best for small purchases.


There are lots of people who believe that silver is undervalued. Not sure what that means in the long run. It valued much less than others like gold and platinum but it works for smaller purchases. 

Buying in Cash

Who knows you have precious metals? If you buy in cash than people will have less awareness about what you own and what you dont own. When it comes to metals you want to pay in cash. 

Trading with Metals 

All that said, beware of who you trade with. The moment you pull out that gold or silver in a SHTF scenario, everyone is going to know what you got going on. They will know you likely have more of these metals. SO, most important beware that where those metals end up. 

After watching recent events unfold and speaking to family and friends, my wife and I decided to start prepping. Preparedness is a big part of our lives now and I would be honored to share some knowledge with you. Here at SHTF Prepping & Homesteading Central we gather the best prepping, survival, homesteading and DIY articles from around the web.
– “Those who prepare today will survive tomorrow.”

Permanent link to this article:

This content was originally published here.

by Megan

The truth is although you may get some advanced warning of a SHTF situation, no one will predict it with absolute certainty. There are however some predicted behaviors and events that experts can predict may happen leading up to the chaos and afterwards.

These predicted behavior patterns are important to understand for anyone who is trying to protect their family and homestead during and after a SHTF event. If you are aware of the changes that could take place, you can prepare your homestead for SHTF and its aftermath. The more steps you take to prepare, the better off you and your family will be.

What Could Happen When SHTF

  • extended power outage
  • widespread panic and looting
  • overwhelmed emergency services personnel
  • stores and businesses are wiped out or closed
  • shipping delays or complete stop
  • pandemic due to poor sanitation or lack of medical care
  • spoiled or stolen food and other supplies
  • injuries, illness and/or mass casualties or death

Plan for Food and Water

One of the big issues following a SHTF event is going to be having access to enough water and food to sustain you and your family through an extended period of chaos and possibly indefinitely. Below are some steps you can begin to take now to help ensure that you and your family have an ample supply of food and water when you need it.

Most people may not be able to do all of these at once but it’s a good idea to make a plan for implementation over a period of time. Do what you can the first year and gradually add to your food and water resources when you can.

  1. Start a food garden to grow vegetables and fruits to sustain your family when grocery stores shut down.
  2. Plant an orchard now so that you’ll be able to harvest fruit for pies and jams to boost morale following a SHTF event.
  3. Grow an herb garden to supplement your food stockpile and for medicine when pharmacies and professional medical services are shut down.
  4. Start a compost pile to use to fertilize soil so your garden will flourish.
  5. Gather/Buy manual kitchen appliances and equipment so you can cook without electricity.
  6. Stockpile food for livestock and pets when shipping is delayed or stopped.
  7. Create a hidden food forest to sustain your family if your garden and stockpile are confiscated or wiped out.
  8. Build a rainwater collection system to use for watering the garden, for livestock, personal hygiene, and if necessary for drinking.
  9. Make a smokehouse for preserving meat if refrigeration fails.
  10. Gather/Buy manual tools for gardening and other homesteading tasks.
  11. Install an aquaponics or hydroponics system to supplement your garden
  12. Plant berry bushes so they can mature and be ready to harvest following a SHTF event.
  13. Stockpile home canned food to create a sustainable food supply without refrigeration.
  14. Build a root cellar for preserving harvested vegetables to extend shelf life through the lean winter months.
  15. Stockpile as much water as possible to prevent dehydration.
  16. Identify nearby fresh water sources to supplement your water stockpile.
  17. Save seeds from garden for future crops in the event shipping is shut down.
  18. Identify wild game and fishing resources on and around your property to supplement your food stockpile.
  19. Identify wild edibles on and around your homestead as a backup food supply.

Plan for Security

Another major issue when it comes to a SHTF event will be shelter. Whether it’s an extreme weather event or something else, steps you take now will mean you can quickly protect your house and livestock shelters against extreme weather or intruders.

  1. Build storm shutters to protect windows and doors to protect against extreme weather. Have these ready and accessible or even installed so they can simply be closed and locked with very little warning.
  2. Reinforce door locks to keep intruders out of your home. This is a step everyone should do anyways to protect against burglary and home invasion.
  3. Build a safe room to use in the event intruders do get into your home or in the event of a tornado or other extreme weather event.
  4. Clear out brush around your home to create a clear line of site to protect against intruders sneaking around your property.
  5. Consider forming a “survival group” with trusted neighbors or family/friends.
  6. Build a secure fence with locked gate around the perimeter of your homestead to secure against intruders.
  7. Establish early alert systems and other perimeter deterrents to protect against intruders.

Additional Ways to Prepare Your Homestead for SHTF

  1. Prepare for waste disposal (Composting Toilet/Humanure) when sanitation systems shut down.
  2. Install a fireplace for heating your home and for hot water.
  3. Install a solar power system to run critical appliances if the power grid fails.
  4. Stockpile batteries of various sizes to use during a power outage.
  5. Install a wind turbine for supplemental power in case of a grid failure.
  6. Buy/Build a generator to run critical systems during short term power outages.
  7. Bury backup supplies in hidden cache locations on and around your homestead as a backup in the event your supplies are stolen or confiscated.
  8. Stockpile personal medications or identify natural alternatives to treat chronic medical conditions when pharmacies are closed.
  9. Buy/Build a ham radio system for communication with family or group members and to monitor news and events happening in your area.
  10. Make any repairs to house and livestock buildings regularly to safeguard your shelter.
  11. Stockpile replacement parts for vehicles and manual equipment in the event of a mechanical failure.
  12. Create plans and assign duties for possible scenarios (in case of fire, tornado, intruders, etc.) so each family can act quickly in a crisis.
  13. Consider bulletproof options for your vehicle and house to safeguard against an intruder attack.
  14. Establish a method for properly storing gasoline and other fuels for vehicles and for heating your home.
  15. Begin growing your own fodder to feed livestock to sustain them if feed supply stores are wiped out or shut down.
  16. Improve insulation in your home and barn to increase your ability to stay warm in cold weather and cooler in hot weather.
  17. Establish a system for washing clothes without power.
  18. Stockpile firewood to use for heating and cooking in an extended grid down situation.
  19. Pay off as much debt as possible, use excess to enhance your stockpile.
  20. Stockpile items (honey, cigarettes, sugar, coffee, etc.) that can be used to barter for other items you may need to survive.

Is your homestead prepared for SHTF? What steps have you taken to prepare? Which of the 50 ways to prepare will you consider?  If we’ve missed something you think is vital for homestead preparation, let us know in the comments below.

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(Midland GMRS ‘base’ or ‘mobile’ 2-way radio)

2-way radios (walkie-talkies) do not require a working infrastructure as do cell phones (antenna towers, network service providers, power-grid, a paid service plan). A set of 2-way radios ‘just works’. The only thing a 2-way radio needs is a charged battery.

2-way radios may have their limits on how far they will transmit and receive, however there are some that are perfect for local communications while serving a wide variety of purposes.

We have been using GMRS 2-way radios here at the homestead for awhile now, and they’ve been great (The General Mobile Radio Service)… Since it’s just Mrs.J and I, whenever either of us goes out somewhere on the property, we ALWAYS bring a 2-way radio. It’s not only convenient for normal comms, but you just ‘never know’ when an emergency situation may arise. I also always keep a set of handheld radios in the truck for ‘just in case’.

Here’s a bit more about GMRS radios, a decent ‘base station’ concept (and base antenna), handhelds, and why I like GMRS for local general purpose comms…

There are several choices when it comes to choosing the best type of 2-way radio for local communications. In short, there’s MURS, FRS, GMRS, and CB radio. I’m not going to get too technical about it, but to put it simply…each of these types of radios operate on different frequency bands and each have their pros and cons. I feel that GMRS is the best for ‘local’ communications, especially given that these radios can operate up to 5 watts power.

What do I mean by ‘local’? I’m talking about a range within just several miles or less. Again without getting into potentially boring technical reasons (although I find it interesting 😉 ), there are many factors which affect range. GMRS is ‘line of sight’ (from one radio to the other) although it will transmit through forest, buildings, some terrain, etc.. to an extent depending on density. I won’t go deeper into it than that, so just know that I’m talking about communications within a several miles (although you can go hilltop to hilltop up to 20 miles or thereabouts…).

Handheld and ‘Base Station’ GMRS radios

I have had handheld GMRS 2-way radios for years. They work well. With that said, a radio designed as a ‘base station’ may offer some attributes that potentially make it more powerful. Their electronics may be better designed (although not always). More importantly they can be paired up with a better antenna which enables the radio to reach out further than a handheld.

For example, the following GMRS radio although designed to mount in a vehicle, serves well as a base station for inside the house (use with an upgraded external antenna).

The radio being designed for the vehicle will require a 12-volt DC power connection. Alternatively for inside the home you simply need a small 12 volt DC power supply. Example:

Note: I really like the simplicity of this radio. However (tech alert), it does not have ‘repeater’ capability (Duplex mode) (See the next note). But that’s okay with me since I’m only using this type of radio for local communications.

Note: Some GMRS radios include ‘repeater’ functionality that enables you to transmit further by way of repeater stations which ‘repeat’ your signal by first receiving your transmission and then re-transmitting it from the repeater location (typically located in high spots like tops of mountains, buildings or towers.). There’s more ‘technical’ description, but I’ll leave it at that.

GMRS Base Station Antennas

While a handheld GMRS radio typically has an attached short ‘rubber ducky’ antenna (a short whip), an antenna can be a factor that can increase your range.

A ‘base station’ type radio will enable you to choose your own external antenna which may have characteristics that increase your range. Additionally by increasing the height of your antenna (mounting it up high), you can improve the distance your signal radiates.

There are a number of GMRS base station antennas which are designed for this specific frequency range. One popular and relatively low cost GMRS antenna with 6.5 db gain is the…

Additional considerations will be procuring the coax cable between the radio and the antenna, mounting it (e.g. to the house via a pole and mounting brackets), making a feed-through from the inside to the outside of the house, fine tuning the antenna,…

There are LOTS of these radios out there. Some more simple to operate than others.

Years ago I purchased several pairs of the following handheld GMRS radios – and they’re stilling going strong today with lots of use and abuse…
Midland GXT1000VP4 FRS/GMRS Two-Way Radio (Pair)

A very popular and highly rated 2-way radio:
BaoFeng UV-5R Dual Band Two Way Radio

Uses for GMRS 2-way radios

Camping and keeping your group in communications with each other
Great for large properties and farms
Local neighborhood communications
vehicle to vehicle travel
Security watch/patrol

Note: Technically, GMRS does require a license from the FCC to transmit, and transmitting power is allowable up to 5 watts. However in 2010, the FCC proposed to remove the individual licensing requirement for GMRS and instead license GMRS “by rule” (meaning that an individual license would not be required to operate a GMRS device). This proposal is still pending. In practice, hardly anyone uses a license on this band due to its consumer popularity…

This content was originally published here.

If there is a disaster and there is no food on the shelves, what will you eat? Where will you find food? Should you be trapping for food?

Trapping for Food After SHTF

Picture this: No food in the stores. What is your first thought?

“I’ll hunt for food!”

That’s what I thought too, until I realized that everyone else will attempting to hunting too. Wildlife will hide. People who aren’t hunters will shoot anything that moves, including themselves and others. It will be forest mayhem.

You’ll have plenty on your mind already, with protecting your loved ones and supplies from roving gangs and looters, while trying to lay low. How will anyone have time to hunt?

To make things even worse, everyone will be stomping around the forest and scaring the food, you’ll have to spend longer looking for wild game.

The smart move will be to make the food come to us! Why hunt for food when you can catch food while doing other things? Multi-tasking will be the key.

Traps and snares
Some leg traps and snares placed at strategic locations along trails and streams, creeks, and rivers should provide some good meat. Animals will hide from hunters and humans, but they’ll still need to hunt and to drink water.

I know many of you have never trapped or setup snares, but if you Google “rabbit snares” and you’ll see how easy it is to snare small game, with nothing but some wire.

In addition to the traps and snares, you should setup some “trotlines” and Fish YoYos to catch fish, without fishing.

For those of you who aren’t very outdoorsy, let me give you a quick tip:

Squirrels may not look like much, but many a pioneer survived on fried squirrel.

Luckily those suckers are lazy. All you have to do is prop a stick or log against a tree and they will take that new route almost every time. If you happen to put a bunch of snares on that log, they’ll walk right into the trap. Squirrels do have an unfortunate instinct to leap once they are caught, so they leap right off the log with the snare around their neck.

The funny thing about squirrels, they’ll go down the same log that just hung 20 of their friends, just to see what the heck is going on.

Instead of just hunting and foraging the wilds for food, make sure to add some trapping to your bag of tricks.. Set traps in places that make sense. This allows you to handle other survival business, while the food comes to you. Many people think they can hunt, but how many know how to trap? Get some books and read up on trapping now, so you can feed your family and make cool fur crafts after the SHTF.

This content was originally published here.

Every once in awhile the metaphorical you know what will hit the fan. A drain clogs, a toilet overflows as you have guests coming in for a dinner party, and so on and so forth. Bottom line? If something can go wrong, you should be prepared to fix it when it does.

That in mind, here are four affordable items that will be you priceless the next time you find yourself in a SHTF situation.

  1. Plunger

Chances are, you probably already have a plunger. Most people do for the obvious reason that when you need one, you really, really need one.

But did you know that plungers can be for much more than just a clogged toilet? Yep! The same mechanism of pumping and releasing air on your toilet bowl to free a clog can also be applied to shower and sink drains in a pinch.

Handy to know right? But if you are going to be using your plunger in this way, you may want to think about investing in more than one. What happens in the toilet bowl should stay in the toilet bowl…

  1. Vinegar

Spilled red wine on your white rug? Don’t panic. Instead, run on over to your pantry. Vinegar is great for lifting stains, and actually for cleaning in general.

For best results, tackle the stain with two cups of water, and a teaspoon of laundry detergent. As for the vinegar itself, you will want to use about two tablespoons.

  1. Baking Soda and Crazy Glue

Oh no! A crack in your wall! If you find yourself in the pickle of having a small to moderately sized crack in a concrete wall, all is not lost. In fact, the solution is easy to use and very affordable: Crazy glue, and baking soda.

Blend the two together, and you get a workable, rubbery solution that can be applied to cracks. When it dries, it will turn into a plasticky, durable filling.

  1. Acetone

Super glue is, for many people, a household essential. The problem? It isn’t always a great fit for homes that have young children. If your young one (or, let’s face, you) have made a serious mistake with the super glue, it can be easy to panic. Resist the urge! Super glue has one powerful weakness: Acetone.

Acetone is a powerful chemical solvent that is a key ingredient in nail polish remover. Acetone can be used to remove superglue from both skin and objects. Just try to be sparing with how much you apply at once. This chemical is very harsh on skin and can discolor certain fabrics if used in excess.


Who says that handling disasters needs to be hard? All of the solutions we have seen today are simple and easy enough for just about anyone to execute. The best part of all of this is that most people have the above-listed items already tucked away somewhere in their house.

Next time things go catastrophically wrong, don’t panic. Rush over to your cabinet, your cupboard, or yes, even your plunger, and proceed confidently, with the knowledge that you can fix it.

The post 4 Low-Priced Items That Will be Priceless After SHTF appeared first on Cascade Business News.

This content was originally published here.