So You’re Thinking of Becoming a Prepper?

Given the latest hurricanes, fires, and threats of nuclear annihilation, I believe that everyone can be a little more prepared when emergencies strike.

California Fires
Fires decimate California communities in October, 2017. Source

There are many different types of prepping and many different types of preppers. What this means is that the way you approach prepping is going to depend on your individual circumstances. For example, a family of four with two kids prepping for a natural disaster is going to have survival requirements that are far different from an individual or couple prepping for a government overthrow (although this may sound like a ridiculous notion at first, Venezuela is a recent and terrifying example of just that). Additionally, the logistics of survival for families with children or elderly family members are much more complicated than logistics for an individual or a couple. Another important thing to consider is that the amount of risk you will be willing to undertake will be different based on whether you have children and family to worry about, for fear of putting loved ones in harms way (this is not to say that prepping and survival are incompatible with having a family, just that the way you prep will be different based on your specific circumstances such as family, age, skill, location etc.). That being said, I hope that you will follow along with this blog, and I hope that I can help provide a guide for creating a survival plan that is useful and unique for all individual situations.

We have already seen in instances like hurricanes, earthquakes and power outages how quickly the societal systems we have come to rely on break down. In Puerto Rico, for example, a large majority of the population is without power (approximately 85% at the time of this article). According to Governor Ricardo Rosselló of Puerto Rico, “Our telecommunications system is partially down. Our energy infrastructure is completely down.” What’s more, it is expected that 95% of power will be restored in December 2017. Restoring energy is a first priority for the government of Puerto Rico right now, and their estimated time of completion is three months from now. Can you imagine how long it will take to restore water service, regular delivery of supplies, medical services, and other necessities that are not their first priority? All of this is happening to U.S. Citizens and even with the backing of the federal government, the timeline for restoring infrastructure is bleak. There have been reports across news outlets that people have resorted to pumping water out of a hazardous-materials site because they have run out of options for water. Hurricane Maria was not a once-in-a-lifetime hurricane, yet it shut down the delivery of supplies, aid, and power for months. It showed that a recurring weather event (think Hurricane Harvey, Jose, Irma, and Maria in 2017), could decimate a U.S. territory, and leave U.S. citizens to fend for themselves for months. This is why everyone needs to have a survival plan in place after taking into account the various catastrophes, big and small, that could befall their individual communities.

Hazardous water
Puerto Rican families getting water from a stream following Hurricane Irma. Source

It can be difficult to think about all the small things we have come to rely on thanks to modern society. We don’t often think of toilet paper as a “necessity”, but in a shitty situation, running out of toilet paper can quickly make your life difficult. This one small thing may not mean the difference between life and death, but other small things like antibiotics or a wound stitching kit could certainly mean the difference between life and death during a catastrophe.

At the end of the day, you never want to find yourself without something that could save your life, or the life of your family, due to a lack of preparation and planning.

So, what is the prepper mindset?

The prepper mindset is no big secret. Preppers sometimes get a bad rap for being crazy, loner, conspiracy theorists. I want to challenge that image. A prepper is someone who has thought about the situations that may befall and endanger their lives and the lives of  their family, and has the answers, supplies, and a plan for every day life questions when shit hits the fan. For example, in a natural disaster, knowing that a hurricane is coming and having a bathtub bladder on hand may mean survival for you and your family, especially if the alternative is having to scramble and buy water in the last minute when supplies are running low. But what if the hurricane decimates your home and your bathtub bladder is useless? These are the logistical challenges I will tackle in this blog so that the answers to them will be second nature in an emergency situation.

Ok, you’ve convinced me to become a prepper. What is the first thing I need to do after reading this blog post to be on my way to becoming a prepper?

The first thing you need to do to be on your way to becoming a prepper is to sit down and think about (preferably jot down) some of the things your family needs to survive. Think about the specific things you will need to plan for based on your location, living situation, and specific needs. Here are some questions you should think about before you start making a specific plan:

  1. How many people live with you? Are they children or adults? Do you expect more people to join you in an emergency situation (grandparents, siblings, friends)?
  2. Do you have a meet up plan in case communication goes down and you/your spouse are at work and your children are at school? (There should be a primary and secondary plan where to meet).
  3. Does anyone in your family take life-sustaining medication?
    1. Do they need specific items to help them function daily?
    2. Do they wear glasses/ contacts (having two backup pairs of glasses can mean the difference between life and death for people who need glasses to see)
    3. Do they need allergy medication/ EPI pens?
    4. Are they using insulin or oxygen?

Before I end this blog, I suggest that you think about how these three questions apply to your family. Would your children know where to meet up with you if staying at school was no longer safe? Would your spouse know what to do if an emergency struck while both of you were at work and all communications were down? A good place to start is to ask you children or family members what they would do in a hypothetical emergency situation. Then, start working on a plan and discussing it with those in your family unit so that everyone is on the same page if an emergency strikes. In the next few blogs, I will discuss some of the most important supplies and knowledge necessary for survival. You are joining me at the beginning of this blog, and I hope you keep coming back for more survival logistics.


Semper Fi,


10 Best Unique Survival Gifts for the Prepper in Your Life

Hi everyone,

With the holidays quickly coming upon us,  this week’s blog post is geared toward those of you who have a prepper in your life and want to get them a cool and unique gift, and for those of you who are like me and just want to find more cool gear for yourself. Having looked for these types of survival and prepper lists myself, I noticed a lot of similarities between the items recommended, and they were typically things that experienced preppers and survivalists already have in their bug out bag. I have a whole collection of Life Straws after getting one for almost every Christmas and birthday because the Life Straw is on every “Best Survival Gifts” list. That being said, I hope that the following list of some of my favorite survival gifts can help you find a unique survival gift for the novice prepper or experienced prepper in your life. I have included survival gifts that range from less than $20 to a few hundred dollars, so there are options for all budgets.


  1. Going Home: A Novel (The Survivalist Series) By: A. American 

Cover page photo of the A. American novel "Going Home", the first book in the Survivalist series. It is listed as the first item in the 10 Best Unique Survival Gifts for the Prepper in Your Life

Why I Like It: Often times, survival and prepper reading material can be somewhat dry and manuscript-like. However, this book was a captivating work of fiction that combined a great narrative with situations that real-life survivalists prep for their whole lives. I also found it refreshing to find a protagonist that I could very closely relate to, and that in many of the life and death situations he encounters, he reacts with the same common sense and no-BS way of thinking that I would. Overall it was interesting to immerse myself in a world where my survival skills would be tested, and think about how I would react if faced with the same challenges. Also, you can’t help but love the author’s pen name…Angery American.

Who It’s Good For: If the prepper in your life enjoys reading, this may be a good gift for them, especially if you don’t know what gear they already have.

2. Strategic Relocation: North American Guide to Safe Places, 3rd Edition

Image of a 3D front cover of the Strategic Relocation book, number 2 on the lost of Top 10 Unique Survival Gifts for Preppers.

Why I Like It: Can you tell I like reading yet? This is one of my favorite books to open to a random page and just start reading. It has a very comprehensive evaluation of the threats and benefits facing all of the United States, and ranks all the states using a composite threat score based on an outlined and extensive list of criteria. The book has fascinating statistics regarding world geography, politics, crime, standard of living, and prospects of war, as well as one of the most comprehensive analyses of factors that can impact quality of life. Finally, there are strategic maps of resources, nuclear sites, population, geographic factors, and countless other metrics.

Who It’s Good For: If the prepper in your life likes reading, but prefers non-fiction to fiction, this is the survival gift for them! Regardless of how educated or experienced the prepper is in survival, this book will have relevant, interesting, and useful information regarding relocation, and even if the prepper does not plan on moving, the book has state specific maps and resource information that could be invaluable in an emergency, and that is not found on standard maps. If you are in doubt about what gift to get the prepper in your life, this is my “fool proof” recommendation.


3. Goal Zero Guide 10 Plus Solar Recharging Kit with Nomad 7 Solar Panel

Image of the Goal Zero 10 plus solar charging system. This is number three in the list of 10 best unique survival gifts for preppers.

Why I Like It: I have so much gear that stays stowed away for emergencies and rarely sees the light of day (pun intended). This is not one of them. I take this solar charger with me on hiking trips, to football games, and even keep it in my car in case of emergencies. It’s cool because it gives you the option to directly charge a smart phone (in under an hour), or to charge a battery pack for later use. I’ve used the battery pack frequently by attaching the panels to my hiking backpack and charging my phone and the battery pack simultaneously. Then, if my phone dies during the night at camp, I still have the battery pack and the option to charge without access to the Sun. The system is also more rugged and durable than other similar systems I’ve owned.

Who It’s Good For: This survival gift is perfect for a hiker or prepper who enjoys spending time outdoors, or lives out in the country where they can spend a large majority of their days outside. It is a great gift option because it will get tons of use instead of sitting in a gear bag, and can be invaluable if power goes out for an extended period of time.


4. Vertex EDC Gamut Plus Bag

Image of the black version of the EDC Gamut bag, number 4 in the list of 10 Best Unique Survival Gifts for Preppers.

Why I like It: I bought this bag recently as an addition to my mobile bug out bag and it has quickly become one of my favorite survival backpacks. It’s one of my favorites because it is undistinguishable from a normal type of bag, as opposed to more common bug out bags with a military look. This bag looks undistinguishable from a standard work or school backpack, while still having the sturdiness and utility you want from a  military type of backpack. It is made with very high quality and durable material, and compartmentalized in a way that allows it to house a LOT of equipment while keeping everything organized. The side storage can hold some fairly long items, and the main pouch could fit a disassembled AR comfortably (a plus for a bug out bag). One potential downside to this bag is that it has optional compartments that can be purchased separately, but if purchased as a gift for a prepper, it can also mean they have more freedom to customize an already awesome bag to their exact specifications.

Who It’s Good For: This is a great gift for a prepper who you know likes to keep a survival bag with them in their car. It’s a unique bag and is well tailored to the sort of equipment preppers may have in their bag. In addition, this bag is sturdy and comfortable in case it has to be worn for an extended period of time. You can also buy the smaller, less expensive version, here.


5. Allen Ultimate Gun Cleaning Kit 

Image of an open Allen Ultimate Gun Cleaning Kit. This is item number five in the list of 10 Best Unique Survival Gifts for Preppers

Why I like It: I have cleaned many a gun, and owned many a gun cleaning kit. This one has been my favorite so far. I really like the organization and the build of this kit. It comes in a sturdy tool box with labels and nice compartments so it was easy for me to keep all the tools organized throughout use. One of my favorite things about this tool kit is that it had room for other cleaners and oils so you could technically keep all of your gun cleaning supplies inside the toolbox, instead of just the tools that came with the box.

Who It’s Good For: This is a great survival gift for weapons enthusiasts because it contains different tools that you may need to clean a whole range of weapons. It’s also a great gift for someone who just purchased their first weapon because all the different tools may drive them to open their weapon up, learn about it by cleaning it, and become more proficient in weapons use in case of an emergency. Also, keeping your weapons clean and in good condition is just good practice.


6. Chill Gorilla Hex Hammock Rain Fly Tent Tarp

An image of the disassembled Chill Gorilla Hammock Tarp, item number 6 in the list of 10 Best Unique Survival Gifts for Preppers.

Why I Like It: I love using this tarp right above my hammock when sleeping outside. It keeps the rain out perfectly, and the design blocks out wind and cold when placed close above the hammock. It can cover two hammocks next to each other, or quite a few one above another (though wind gusts may become a problem in this case). The hammock is made in the USA with high quality durable material, and is small enough to fit into any bug out bag when in its’ pouch. This can also serve as a tarp in any number of situations and I have replaced my cumbersome tarp and bungee combo with this product in most situations.

Who It’s Good For: This is another one of those survival gifts that is great for preppers, survivalists, hikers, and anyone who spends time outdoors. It will obviously come in handy when building a shelter, but it will also come in handy at an outdoors sporting event, while fishing or boating, as shade during the summer, and in countless other ways. I highly recommend this as a cool gift for the prepper in your life.


7. Outlite Portable Flashlight

Close up image of the Outlite Portable Flashlight, item number 7 in the list of 10 Best Unique Survival Gifts For Preppers.

Why I Like It: Everyone needs a good flashlight, and everyone could use a few spare flashlights. You can’t go wrong with this gift. The Outlite is water resistant, has multiple light and brightness settings, and takes up relatively little space. I always keep one of these in a few places throughout the house, in the car, and in my bug out bag with some spare batteries.

Who It’s Good For: This is another universal gift because it is useful to absolutely anyone, and because it’s pretty inexpensive, it could be a good gift for a coworker, or a prepper you don’t know well enough to know what gear they already have. Everyone can use a great flashlight!


8. SOG Trident Assisted Folding Knife

A close up image of the SOG Trident Assisted Folding Knife, item number 8 on the list of 10 Best Unique Survival Gifts for Preppers.

Why I Like It: I love this knife because of how dependable it has been for me overseas during my deployments and here in the good ole U.S of A. Not to mention, it’s a pretty damn cool looking knife. It’s a very multi-faceted knife, having a smooth sharp edge to it that does not dull easily,  and a serrated edge at the end for the cutting off thicker items the smooth edge may not easily get through. It has a spring assist that isn’t too fast or slow, in addition to having a blade lock. Other features include a seat belt cutter and the ability to break car windows with the edge in emergency situations. This knife has been and comes with me just about everywhere I go. I actually have 3 of them; one for my on person, one in my bug out bag, and one in my car.

Who It’s Good For: This survival gift is one that just about anyone with the hiker, survivalist and prepper mindset will love. Its utility alone makes it something cool and fun to give. Let’s just say I myself have given this knife as a gift to loved ones and the looks on their face upon opening it did not disappoint

9. Under Armour Men’s Storm Tactical Patrol Pants 

Image of man wearing black Under Armour Tactical Patrol Pants. This is item number 9 in the list of 10 Best Unique Survival Gifts for Preppers.
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Why I Like It: So we’ve come near the end of this list, and maybe you still haven’t found the best gift for the prepper in your life. The Under Armour Tactical Pants are a survival gift that I could receive over and over again and never be dissatisfied. I wear these pants to hike in the winter and summer, to work, to the movies, to mow my lawn, and anything else you can imagine. They are ridiculously comfortable, yet durable. I own them in every color Under Armour makes them. The waistband has some stretch to allow a full range of motion for whatever activity you are doing, but is sturdy enough to hold a concealed carry, and the material is somehow cooling when it needs to be, warming when it needs to be , and water resistant throughout. Finally, the pockets are deep enough and secure enough to hold valuables while moving, running etc.

Who It’s Good For: These pants are for everybody. I would recommend them to literally anyone, regardless of age, gender, or activity. They are great pants. If you want to give a prepper a survival gift that will keep on giving, get them this pair of pants.

10. Silkies

Silkies meme from the movie Aliens captioned "That moment you notice colonial marines still have silkies in the future". Silkies are item number 10 in the list of 10 Best Unique Survival Gifts for Preppers.  Image of Marine badass dropping mortars while wearing silkies, with the caption "Silkies? More Like "Daisy Dukes of Freedom". Silkies are item number 10 in the list, Top 10 Unique Survival Gifts For Preppers.

Why I Like It: If you STILL don’t know what to get the prepper in your life, this is the answer. Silkies are a Marines best friend, and if you or someone you know has never tried on a pair of silkies, you’ve been missing out. Like fine wine, silkies get better with age. My silkies have been stolen by every girl I’ve ever dated. They are perfect for lounging in, sleeping, and for running a marathon, with just enough support to keep the “franks and beans” as cuddled up as pigs in a blanket. Another aspect of silkies that I love is that they are lightweight, can easily be packed away, and are very easy to clean compared to other types of under garments. They dry very easily and would be a great edition to a bug out bag.

Who It’s Good For: EVERYONE. There is not a single person who would not benefit from having a worn-in pair of silkies in their life. Seriously. Click on the picture, read the first few reviews, laugh, buy a pair of silkies, wear them, emerge enlightened.


I hope you found a great and unique survival gift for the prepper in your life. If you have any product review suggestions for me, think an item that isn’t on this list should be, or just want to let me know what you think of my new blog, please comment below, or reach out at

Semper Fi!