2.4 – SHTF

Many preppers talk about bugging out, but how many of them have the skills or the strength to actually do it? It’s one thing to talk about bugging out; it’s another thing to actually carry a bag full of gear 10-15 miles a day in dangerous and unforgiving conditions. On this page I will be sharing tips and insights as to how to prepare, and for what, as well a linking you to some amazing products that can make woods, mountain, and survival life, much easier. Lets start with some basic tips.

A great way to prepare for this situation is to start backpacking.

While you can never simulate an actual bug out situation, backpacking helps you prepare in a number of different ways.

  • It prepares your body for the rigorous conditions that you are bound to face.
  • Backpacking can help you figure out exactly how your body will respond to carrying gear across different terrains.
  • It helps you get a good idea of how much ground you can realistically cover during a Bug Out Scenario.

Having an evacuation plan is great… But have you ever actually used it?

By backpacking the routes that you plan to take in a Bug Out situation, you greatly increase your chances of surviving a real life disaster. Hit the trails, study the surroundings, and take plenty of notes.

  • Figure out how far you can comfortably hike every day.
  • Take note of what natural resources lie along your route.
  • Be on the lookout for any possible dangers, and figure out how you can avoid them.
  • Take your maps and mark the location of every watering hole or possible emergency shelters that are near your route.

Test your gear now when your life’s not on the line.

The last thing you need in your bug out bag is a bunch of crappy gear that doesn’t hold up out the trail. Now is the time to start testing that gear.

When you’re out on the trail, ask yourself these important gear questions:

  • How easy is it to use?
  • How many times did you actually use that piece of gear and was it really a necessity?
  • Was there a piece of gear that you wish you would’ve had?

Start with the basics and build up to a collection of survival gear for emergency situations.

  • Purchasing an affordable package of basic gear is better than holding out for the best of the best.
  • Something is always better than nothing when you are cold, wet, and hungry.
  • Obtain the basics and replace items with upgrades as you can

You could easily spend thousands of dollars shopping for individual items of high-end survival gear, or you could purchase a package like this for as little as $140



Still, many people don’t have the $140.00 to drop on a starter set like this, so Ill also be covering some very affordable individual items that you can be stocking up on in the meanwhile. A wealthy man I am not, so I’m always looking for a good deal on things, or holding off buying something until I find a deal. Several times I have saw something listed on Amazon for an unbelievably low cost, and I’d just took a chance on it. Every now and then the item would turn out to be amazing, and so I thought I review some of the products that I have found interesting and worth while, including photos, links, and my honest opinion of the items. If you decide to try one out for yourself, please use my link to make your purchase, and I’ll get a tiny (very tiny) kick-back from Amazon. Most of the items listed here are weapons, self defense items, or survival gear, generally less than $20, and many are less than $10. Ill specify whether each item is “Urban/Self Defense”, “Camping/Wilderness/Survival”, or “Both”.


SOG Entrenching Tool F08-N – Folding Shovel $10.00

Lightweight and compact folding shovel and pick
Tri-fold design for portability
Comfortable, folding steel handle
Includes nylon carrying case w/ gear loops
Overall length: 18.25-inches, Weight: 24.5 ounces, Lifetime Warranty

These do not come sharpened, so I would recommend sharpening the tip for easy digging through roots, one flat side for chopping, and the serrated saw edge for sawing. Overall this is an amazing little tool and weapon for $10. It weighs nothing, takes up very little space, does digging, picking, sawing, chopping, and stabbing. It could honestly save your life, and without breaking your back by carrying five different tools for those jobs.

Urban/Self Defense

Credit Card Folding Safety Knife $3.99


ULTRA THIN – 2.2 mm thick (traditional Stanley® utility knife body thickness is 25 mm)
LIGHTWEIGHT – 13 grams (Stanley® knife @150 grams, Leatherman® @ 85 grams,Victorinox® @ 23 grams)
SAFETY – Blade edge is protected when stored in wallet or kit bag. Protective hilt appears when open
RAZOR SHARP – Surgical blade technology with long 65mm cutting edge ensures longer lasting sharpness
SHIPPING – Please allow 7-10 working days for delivery

I bought this in November of last year and now I feel naked without it. I thought it would be flimsy and break easily, but the plastic is actually rather durable and folds in to a handle that is more comfortable than it looks (It has a textured area where your thumb rest). I actually used it enough to dull the blade, and so I can verify that its durable enough to be resharpened, and hold an edge for a reasonable amount of time/use. It won’t ever be your primary pocket knife, but its one hell of a hidden back up. The main point is that no one would ever think to look in your wallet for weapons, and I have actually been patted down, disarmed, and had the cop turn around and hand me my wallet/knife back without knowing what he was doing… I cant recommend this awesome little blade enough, lol. For $4 its a must have, and possibly a life saver.


SOG SOGfari 18″ Machete MC02-N – Hardcased Black Blade w/ Saw Back $15.29

Professional-grade, dual edged machete with 18-inch, black powder coated blade made from 3Cr13 stainless steel
Straight edge blade on one side, large tooth serrated edge for sawing on the other. Great for clearing brush and harvesting crops
Black handle’s Kraton synthetic rubber material provides a no-slip surface with increased heat resistance, weathering and chemical resistance
Includes a black nylon sheath and a lanyard hole
Comes with a limited lifetime warranty

Lets face it, this is a Sword-Saw, and you want one. This thing can slice and saw through brush and bone alike. I like the way the blade is one solid piece all the way through the handle, and even has the metal nub at the bottom (I’m not sure what to call it) which makes a hell of a blunt strike if you are in a situation where you cannot swing. I recommend this Machete (Sword-Saw).

Urban/Self Defense

Tactical Pen First Line Defensive Tool


Material: Aviation aluminum
Provide nice writing tools with high performance and bodyguard for emergency
Color: Black
Size: Approx. 14.5*3cm (L*D)
Packaged with a paper box

I love this pen. The texture, material, size, and wow factor, really make a statement. It just looks awesome, it writes well, and the ink cartridges are cheap and replaceable. The only thing that I ever managed to break on it was the spring inside. Luckily enough you can replace it with any spring from another pen, which means that this thing literally last forever. It has a glass (skull) shattering point on one end and writes with the other, and it is twist action. They come in all colors, but I got the black to match my other gear.

Camping/Wilderness/Survival/Urban/Self Defense

TAC Force TF-438 Series Assisted Opening Folding Knife, Spear Point Blade $11.00


4″ Closed
3″ Black Stainless Steel Blade
G10 Overlay Handle
Includes Pocket Clip

This isn’t my favorite knife in my overall collection, but its a damn good one for the price. The spring action and the release tab function better than those on some knives I’ve spent twice as much on. After six months of carrying it now and then I did have to tighten the nut a bit, but thats no big deal to me because I oil and maintain my blades anyway. Its still in my rotation. Old knives are never thrown away, they just graduate to the parts bin where new knives are often born of the aggregate parts.

Urban/Self Defense/Survival

100pcs/set 9.5mm Silver Cone Spikes Screwback Studs $3.24


I know what you are thinking “What a goofy photo of stupid spiky shoes”. But stop and think about it for a minute. These spikes are metal, and if your line of thinking isn’t fashion, you soon realize that these can be used to weaponize nearly any article of clothing from hats (head but these and you’ll know it), belts (a heavy buckle and some spikes make a hell of a swinging weapon), jackets, gloves (these add a bit to a back-hand), shoes, and especially boots. Other than practical combat utility, I guess you could use them to make stuff look cool (don’t let your girlfriend find these or you WILL wake up to spiky shoes…)

Urban/Self Defense

Survival Tool Self-defense Skull Key $4.99


Well, mine was silver, didn’t come with a necklace, and it didn’t say for women lol. I guess the product changed or something. I cut the cord off of mine so that I could just carry it in my pocket. Its tip is good for breaking glass (or skulls) in a punching motion, and the way it sits in your hand is comfortable (worn on the middle finger). Its solid, and no matter what I hit, I couldn’t bend it. Not bad for $5.

Urban/Self Defense/Survival

FURY Tactical SDK (Self Defense Keychain) with Pressure Tip $12.81


Handcrafted with lightweight aircraft aluminum making the ideal Self Defense Keychain SDK, Designed in the USA the Fury SDK is the top selling force multiplier on the market, Finger grooves for better control and grip and includes keychain loop, Measures 5.75-Inch and only weighs 2 ounces will not add stress to your keychain, The Fury SDK is often poorly copied so always look for the engraved Fury logo to insure a genuine product; Fury SDK is Made in Taiwan, Do Not Purchase Chinese Copies

I grabbed one of these simply because I thought it would look neat on my keys, and it does. It weighs nearly nothing but its not brittle at all. I developed the habit of putting this alone in my pocket, providing easy access to my keys. My favorite aspect of this simple device is that its tip is specifically designed to shatter glass (or skulls). You can easily shatter any window or windshield (Pro Tip: Hit the low right corner) for a fast entry into or exit from a vehicle. If your car were under water, the pressure would prevent the window going up or down, but this would shatter it easily, allowing you to escape.

VikingLifeBlog – Survivalism

American Preppers Network

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Modern Survival Blog

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Survival Commonsense

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The Survivalist Blog

Urban Survival Site