When you get right down to it, prepping is all about planning ahead, right? We stock up on food, water, and other supplies so we have them at the ready, come what may. All that, though, is the easy part of being prepared. The hard part is to always be prepared, no matter where you happen to find yourself.
To a large degree, preppers go about this stuff in a rather casual manner. You pick up a few extra cans of veggies when they’re on sale, no big deal. Today, though, we’re going to talk about prepping while on the move and anticipating needs in a more active and immediate manner.
How do you make sure you’re prepared for any number of survival needs when you’re away from home?
Never leave home without the basics
First, make sure you have a well-equipped emergency kit in your vehicle and in a small bag or backpack that you always have with you. These could be a few Everyday Carry (EDC) items, a Bug Out Bag, or just an extra cosmetic bag in your purse filled with a few items like a Swiss army knife, small roll of duct tape, pocket water purifier, and a LED flashlight.
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These supplies will form the core of your survival, no matter where you are. Here’s a handy list to get you started.
Look around for resources and basic survival supplies
Here’s an example of how this works. When taking a break while hiking, look around for natural forms of tinder, such as seed pods, dry grass, and such. Put a handful of it into a plastic bag (you DID remember to put a few empty bags in your kit, right?) and stash that in your pocket. Odds are you won’t need it for building a fire later, but if you do, you’ll have it with you. When you make it home safely, just take it out of the plastic bag and toss it on the compost pile.
Make a mental note of other resources you come across as well. If you happen across a stream or spring that might end up being a source of emergency water, try and remember its location relative to your travel going forward. Assuming you’ve learned a thing or two already about wild edibles, keep an eye out for those, too, in case you need a night’s meal. You might even go so far as to pick a few plump blackberries to munch on later.
While you’re at it, make an effort to check your compass (real or an app) on a regular basis and keep track of your direction of travel. Do this often enough and you’ll get to the point where you develop an internal compass and you’ll just know which way is north. That probably won’t happen your first time out, of course, but spend enough time outdoors and it’ll come. The point is to be in a position where you’ll be able to retrace your steps, to one degree or another, in case you stray from the path and make a wrong turn.
When Should You Do This?
This isn’t something limited to wilderness excursions. Get in the habit of anticipating survival needs everywhere you go. When you go to a movie or out to eat, take note of where all the emergency exits are located, in case there’s a fire or another reason to evacuate. Keep an eye out for easy to remember landmarks when driving in an unfamiliar area. They can help you backtrack, if you make a left when you should have jogged right.
Getting lost while driving might not seem like a true survival situation but, take it from someone who does an awful lot of city driving, it can be quite easy to suddenly find yourself in a very sketchy part of town. If that happens, you want to be able to exit stage right posthaste.
At first, you’ll need to keep all of this at the forefront of your mind, actively thinking about how you’ll meet potential survival needs. But, as time goes on and you do it more and more, you’ll find it becomes second nature and you’ll do it unconsciously.