Camping & Survival

Surplus Up Your Stash

Everyone should have a well-stocked room for shelter in place operations. While there are the obvious things that everybody needs for their shelter, there are also a few other things you may not have thought about.

Entrenching Tool

Entrenching Tool
What Ever You Do, Don’t Call it a Shovel

This thing has so many uses, it’s ridiculous. The obvious use for this handy little device, besides digging of course, is to use it as a weapon. The operator can throw it like a tomahawk, swing it like a club, or use it as a defensive baton. There are entire websites devoted to the art of E-Tool fighting; I wonder how long it takes to get a black belt in Tae Kwon Tool? Aside from fighting, you can use these things as foldable toilets. Guys used to do that when I was in the service. I’m a bit too heavy for that to work, but some guys used them with decent success. An E-Tool makes a great poker for a campfire as well. It is the best way to keep from singing your eyebrows off when you are camping. After you stock up the flames, you can also use it as a camp stool, just tilt the business end 90 degrees, tighten it down, put the handle on the ground and have a seat. It isn’t as comfortable as the living room recliner, but it’s better than sitting on the frozen ground. If you don’t have one of these E-Tools in your SHTF pack, you sir, are unprepared.

NATO Gas Mask Filter

NATO Filter
Drilling a Hole Through These So You Can Smoke in Your Mask is Not Recommended

Have a gas mask? Me too, actually I have several. I spent seven years as a chemical weapons troop in the Air Force, so I know a thing or two about these things. The problem with after market mil-surp masks, isn’t usually the mask itself, it’s the filter. If you don’t have a good filter on your mask, consider yourself hosed. These filters have expiration dates, and once you open the can, the clock ticks a lot faster. Your best bet, if you want to truly stay ready for that chemical, biological, or radiological attack, is to have a fresh filter on your mask ready to go, and change it out regularly. It’s a good idea to have several of these canisters on hand too. Some chemical weapons have canister-breaking properties, in that once contaminated by the agent; you have to throw the filter away almost immediately. Now I know not everybody has access to high-end NBC detection equipment, so you won’t always know what is out there. As a civilian however, you will want to change out your filter regularly no matter what is creeping around in the air.

Military Style Heavy Cot

Military Style Cot
Just Remember These Things Are Meant For One

Having a comfortable place to sleep is something that most people overlook in their SHTF cache. If you are on the move, you may not be able to find a soft warm bed, and nothing is worse than sleeping on the cold ground outside. These cots are the same ones our troops use in the military and they work great. They give your back enough support and keep you off that awful ground. I have slept many nights on cots identical to this one, and I have no complaints. They fold up into a compact enough roll so you can tie them to your backpack, or just throw it in the back of the truck. The rugged material these cots are made of makes these things last a lifetime as well. I’m pretty sure the ones from my old unit were purchased during Vietnam. Now that’s long lasting durability folks!

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