The lines at gas stations extend miles, clean water no longer comes out of faucets, and supermarket shelves are empty… The proverbial end of the world as we know it has arrived. When this happens, martial law will be instituted and those who choose blind loyalty to the government will get their rations and live in a dystopian “paradise.” Those who desire freedom will need to summon their inner survivor.
The proverbial prepper already has a year-supply of food and enough water and ammunition to survive the initial storm. But all of the above will ultimately run out and you’ll be left to fend for yourself or become property of the state. Now is the time to perfect your survival skills.
Various species of deer and waterfowl are the most common animals hunted in America. But specific locales offer different game that can provide both immediate meals and potential renewable food sources if you capture instead of kill.
The California hunter safety course, for instance, mostly focuses on gun safety and maintenance. But it also covers trapping, particularly turkeys and raccoons. Those in Northern California and the foothills of Monterey and San Luis Obispo counties can set traps and wait for turkeys. Patience can net you both a male and female to raise farm fresh turkeys right in your backyard. Gobblers can be noisy, however, so this option is best for those with distance between neighbors.
Depending on the species, turkeys can grow from hatch to dress weight (16-plus pounds) in four months or less. Raccoons also provide good meat, and their fur is valuable for clothing and even bartering in a post-apocalyptic world. Rabbits are abundant in every corner of the lower 48, and are easy to raise for meat.
Hooks and line will be the first things to run out when pro shops are no longer an option. Now is a good time to stock up on both, as fishing will act as both stress relief and another food source.
Trout are abundant in the continental United States, and relatively easy to catch. Virtually any waters in the northwest will have trout, while Michigan and the upper Delaware River in New York are also hot spots. Your local Fish and Game department can provide information on the best holes in the state, in addition to any licenses necessary.
Salmon eggs are the best and most universal bait for trout. The wiggling around of live earthworms and maggots are too much for trout to resist. Corn kernels can also be used in a pinch.
The head-for-the-hills crowd believes they’ll be able to pack up and survive in the wilderness indefinitely. Truthfully most would die in weeks, especially if it’s winter. Humans need food and water, but most importantly shelter. Survival camping is both a fun and valuable experience.
Your survival pack should have all the basics including a canteen, compass, waterproof matches, rope, and extra socks. Take a trip to a remote wooded area and stay for a week. Bring only saltine crackers as this will force you to gather and hunt for food.
Start building a shelter that blends into the environment. Field & Stream Magazine has seven ideas for makeshift shelters that can protect you from the elements and keep you alive. Once you get something built, it can be your spot of refuge if evacuation becomes necessary.