Thank you our friend Caleb for providing this awesome blog article.
What makes a survivalist, or a prepper? There is no answer to any of these questions. The answer is only particular to who asks the question. Those two terms have been tossed around more recently in light of the pandemic, but it is certainly not the beginning, nor the end of the practice. Those terms also carry a negative connotation to those who are the other side of the fence. They often see survivalists and preppers as nut jobs. Sure there are some nut job survivalist/preppers out there, in the majority that is not the case.
I personally refer to myself as a prepared individual instead of a prepper. I am 25 years old, and I have always lived in northwest Ohio.I have sort of always been a prepared individual for as long as I can remember. I always keep a backup of most everyday items in the house (batteries, soap, etc...), and always seem to have the tool for a job on me, in my vehicle, or not very far away at home. I regularly spend time in the woods or outside, and I became interesting in prepping about 5 years ago or so, stumbling across an article somewhere on the web. I would read articles and blogs, saving PDFs of bag builds, checklists, and other helpful information. My interest more recently grew prior to the pandemic with the current state of the world at that time. Following survivalist channels on YouTube and reading books written by some of these survivalists, I decided it was time to start on a bag.
I purchased a 45L bag from Roaring Fire and began stocking it with items that suited my situation the most. I do not travel often, and only drive 7 minutes to work. I built my bag as a “just in case” bag. I keep an extra change of clothes, fire making equipment, basic camp tools, a firearm, small medical pack, and a few other things that would be nice to have in everyday life. My hope is to never have to use my bag other than practice, like the firearm I keep on my side. I look at building a bag and being prepared as “insurance”. It is one of those it is nice to have and never need to use it, than to need it and not have it things. When building a bag I spent tons of time researching products and reviews before I purchased anything. Anybody can build a bag relatively cheap, as I did not spring for the most expensive items for my bag. The Roaring Fire 45L pack is very durable and affordable for those who do not want to drop $300 just for a bag. I feel if the time presents itself and I need some of the items in my bag, I will be prepared for it. A good size bag was a must as the contents of the bag currently is somewhere around 20lbs, however, I do not carry the bag on me every day. Most days I am not further than 30 minutes from home so my bag usually is in my vehicle. I also keep larger items in my vehicle for coming across an accident involving those who may need immediate help. At home I keep more items for a multitude of incidences that may occur testing one’s preparedness.
In the future, I plan to build a smaller bag for my significant other, and train her how to use the items. I have also started purchasing a few extra of the everyday home items every time I go to the store in light of the pandemic shortages. Shortages are likely to happen again as history has shown us in the past. I will continue to build on my skills and knowledge of survival and preparing, but also continue life as normal. I urge readers to consider building an emergency bag, get home bag, or whatever you would like to call it, as we all know the world is full of surprises. Do not spend a fortune becoming prepared and keep in touch with normal life as well. Practicing skills, building a bag, and other things involved with preparing can be a source of entertainment and create deeper bonds with friends and family.
Stay safe out there and be prepared!