Book Review: The Unoffical Hunger Games Wilderness Survival Guide

interior-pages-unofficial-hunger-games-survival-guide-1
Our regular readers will remember that last year we reviewed Creek Stuart’s Build the Perfect Bug Out Bag. Today Creek’s latest book, The Unoffical Hunger Games Wilderness Survival Guide is being released and we were lucky enough to receive a review copy just in time for this review. Like Creek’s other book, this one is also full of useful information (see the page sample to the right). Let’s dive in and see what we have in store this time.

Creek uses details from the Hunger Game book series to illustrate specific preparedness concepts, such as specific situations with individual characters like Katniss or Peeta to relate the skills represented in that fictional scenario with a real world survival or wood craft example. I found this to be a fun and engaging approach for someone who is familiar with the books. This approach may have limited impact for someone who has no knowledge of the characters and why that skill was critical to their survival, or even for someone who only watched the first movie. However, given the title and the suspected audience, I think this has the chance to pull non-preppers in and give them their first exposure to these concepts.

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Coast Rapid Response 3.0 Knife Review

Time for another product review. This is the Coast Rapid Response 3.0 knife, built by Coast Products out of Portland Oregon.Coast Rapid Response 3.0 Knife

This knife features:

  • 3 inch blade
  • 400 Series stainless steel (I wish they mentioned which 400 series.  Saying 400 isn’t very helpful).
  • Liner-Lock, with their “Max-Lock” safety on the side of the handle.
  • One hand opener called S.A.T “Smooth Action Technology” with ambidextrous thumb studs

One of the major selling points on this knife is their spring assisted open.  It is quite snappy.  To prevent any accidental openings you can use their “Max-Lock” on the side of the blade.  When engaged it will prevent the blade from either opening or closing.  During vigorous usage I engaged the Max-Lock unintentionally, then spent a little time fighting with the blade to get it closed.

Coast Rapid Response 3.00 Liner-lock view

You can purchase the Rapid Repsonse 3.0 for $40.00

At $40.00 this is a great knife, especially if you consider that it is a one handed spring assisted opener.  I’ve had this knife in my pocket for about a month now and have used it in a variety of cutting jobs.  The last job I threw at it frankly was knife abuse, but it handled it as well as could be expected.  I was helping a friend lay sod, and I used the knife to cut in the sod.  It lasted through about 3 cuts with a good edge, and soldiered on through the rest of the job if I sawed quite a bit at it.

Once I had thoroughly dulled the blade I took it home, cleaned it up and gave it a good sharpen.  Sharpening this knife gave me a little trouble because of the thumb studs.  It wouldn’t fit properly in any of my power sharpeners, so I had to get out some sharpening rods.  The knife sharpened up just fine and cuts like a champ.

If you have larger hands (I usually wear XL sized gloves) the knife feels a little small sometimes.  For a pocket knife this is great, if you are intending to do longer more rigorous cutting jobs you might want to consider their Rapid Response 3.90 which is a little larger.

You can also watch my video review on the Rapid Response.

Prepping featured on the Today Show this morning – Today Show Preppers

NBCs Today Show via Google Image Search
As I was getting for work this morning, like most mornings I had the morning news on so I can try to be up to date on those events that are reported on. As I was finishing up and getting ready to walk out the door, the Today Show on NBC came on following the local news. One of the first things they mentioned? The growing number of “preppers preparing for the end of the world”.
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Review: UVPaqlite and ToobLite Glow Sticks

ToobLite Mini with a Paracord lanyard and Turks Head knot.

At times when I’m building up my various forms of disaster kits, I want to throw you hands up in frustration at how reliant I am on different forms of technology. As much as I enjoy the outdoors I’m always bending it back to my more technological side. While this may make things more fun, accurate, or whatever other benefits I get, it also makes me dependent on power.

A great example of this is my need for light outdoors. Now sure we’d like to never be reliant on non-natural light forms, but it’s a reality. Even if you just have a midnight bathroom run once and a while, there are times that you need light. Historically of course, man has relied on fire to provide this light, and now we have flashlights to give us nice, portable light whenever we want, provided we have charged batteries.

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Six Months With A Berkey

A long time ago, in a country far, far away…  Ok, I won’t disclose how long ago, I was in Brasil for two years. Heading down there I was often told a familiar maxim to American travelers, “Don’t drink the water”. Everybody has heard this in relation to some foreign location.  Once in Brasil I actually heard it from the locals as well.  To deal with the various forms of bad things in their water, each home has a terra-cotta water filter that was so simple, that it was shear genius. The base was built with a simple spigot for easy water usage, and on top sat a ‘dirty’ water container that had filters mounted in it, letting gravity do all the work for you.

Fast forward several years, and I’ve started a family, and have moved from the bounteous moisture of the Pacific Northwest, to the arid, seemingly desolate land of Utah.

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Work Sharp Knife and Tool Sharpener

Having a sharp knife is critical.  I’m sort of a knife junkie, and am always looking for new and better ways to keep my tools sharp.  I was at a gun show earlier this year and picked up the “Work Sharp Knife and Tool Sharpener“.

What Is It (and what’s in the box):

This Work Sharp basically amounts to a hand held belt sander.  For the Alton Brown fans among us, this device is definitely a Multi-Tasker.  The package comes with several angle guides and some different grits of sanding belts.  The coarsest grit is for sharpening tools like shovels, axes or lawn mower blades.  The medium grit is for fixing up damaged or really dull blades.  The fine grit is for putting on a razor sharp polish. Continue reading “Work Sharp Knife and Tool Sharpener”

Review – Saratoga Jacks Thermal Cooker

A few weeks ago, several of our authors met up on a Saturday to test out some stoves we were given to review. Jayce will be posting some information and pictures on those soon. The subject of this post was an unexpected surprise to me. At our meet up were the owners of Saratoga Jacks, a local company that imports and sells high quality thermal cookers.

After the break you’ll find a complete unboxing and review of the 7 liter Saratoga Jacks Thermal Cooker as well as an introduction to thermal cookers and why they matter to preppers.
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Review: Wrap-It-Ice Bandages

Wrap-It-Ice by Shield-Safety

Today I decided to write a little review on a product that I really wish I didn’t have to do. The reason for this is not for a lack of quality in the product, but the fact that I actually needed to use it. Yes, this is a first-aid bandage that I’ve had sitting in my cabinet waiting until needed, and now it is.

Several months ago I met with Mike at Shield-Safety, and went through their sales pitch about some first-aid products they had.  While a lot of what they did was not new, they had several things that did pique my interest and stand out as something I wanted to buy. Now I’m not normally a person to give into a home sales pitch, but the Shield-Safety people approached us a little bit differently, they taught first-aid basics, and how to actually use the different items that you should have available in a home first-aid station. One of the products they had that got my attention was a sealed wrap for sprains. Continue reading “Review: Wrap-It-Ice Bandages”

OvaEasy Eggs

Heading out on a hike recently, I needed to find a good item for breakfast.  Having already converted my friends to the awesomeness that is freeze-dried eggs, I wanted to try something new.  I’ve long been anti- dehydrated/powdered eggs after having far too many bad experiences with them. To me they still always taste odd, and it leaves me not wanting eggs for a while afterwards.  However, I do have a love for eggs and really wanted to have some on our hike.  So as I was browsing along a local sporting good store, I happened upon a new item. Continue reading “OvaEasy Eggs”

Review: Daily Bread Beef Stroganoff With Noodles

The way to a man’s heart is his stomach.  When that man is a prepper, and a blogger, nothing could be more true.  With that said, I was overjoyed recently when I was contacted by one of our local freeze-dried companies.  They were wondering if I would be interested in sampling a couple of their entrees, and writing my opinion on them.  Not exactly a difficult decision there.

What made this choice even better was the timing. I just happened to be heading up that weekend with the guys for a little man-camp time.  What a better way to test things out. Continue reading “Review: Daily Bread Beef Stroganoff With Noodles”

Review: The Forgotten Skills of Self-Sufficiency Used by the Mormon Pioneers

Walking along the book aisle in Costco the other day, I came to a rather sudden stop as a specific books caught my eye. With a name like The Forgotten Skills of Self-Sufficiency Used by the Mormon Pioneers, can you blame me?  This was obviously a book stocked for a local audience, so I hope our non-Utah readers can find a copy.  Author Caleb Warnock is a local (Alpine, Utah) writer, year-round gardener, and teacher of “Forgotten Skills” classes.  It also helped when I noticed one of the people listed in the special thanks section is a friend of mine, and local sci-fi author (how’s that for a tight-knit Utah Valley).

Walking along the book aisle in Costco the other day, I came to a rather sudden stop as a specific book caught my eye. With a name like The Forgotten Skills of Self-Sufficiency Used by the Mormon Pioneers, can you blame me?  This was obviously a book stocked for a local audience, so I hope our non-Utah readers can find a copy.  Author Caleb Warnock is a local (Alpine, Utah) writer, year-round gardener, and teacher of “Forgotten Skills” classes.  It also helped when I noticed one of the people listed in the special thanks section is a friend of mine, and local sci-fi author (how’s that for a tight-knit Utah Valley). Also at only $11 or so, any tidbit that might help will likely pay dividends well over the purchase price of the book.

This book also stood out to me, because I often wonder *how* my family managed to get enough food to live.  My mom’s side of the family was that oft-discussed “hearty pioneer stock”.  However I have noticed that while many farmed to live, I have a long history of blacksmiths and military.  There is no hiding that this must be because I inherited a really lousy black-thumb, they took up other trades because of this family curse. I’m one of those people who has to work really hard to make part of his garden succeed.  I enjoy blaming my heritage on this, as it cannot be some failing of my own, right?  So I felt driven to read this book, and find out how they managed to live, despite my inability to grow enough of the right foods in the wasteland of Utah.

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Goal0 Sherpa Kit

Recently, Mike published an article introducing a local company named Goal0 (article link). They develop solar products to fit a wider variety of needs than your average solar pack, and so we were very intrigued as to their application to a prepper mindset.

Goal0 Sherpa Setup
My Sherpa gear

Recently, Mike published an article introducing a local company named Goal0 (article link). They develop solar products to fit a wider variety of needs than your average solar pack, and so we were very intrigued as to their application to a prepper mindset.

Elite/Sherpa Products

In reviewing the different models, I decided to purchase some of the Sherpa series of products to try out.  One of the ideal solutions when buying gear is to get one of the pre-defined kits, in my case I specifically picked up the Sherpa 120 kit.  This kit is made up of the following items, which in the bundle came at a good discount:

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