Surviving in the dark will be much harder than you think, here’s why and how you can improve your chances.

EyeHello my friend and welcome back! Surviving when SHTF hits will be tough, that’s a given.  But somehow when most of us think about surviving, we tend to focus on surviving in the daylight, with little concern about the dark of night. In today’s post we are going to look at why the nights will be so much more dangerous than the days and what you can do now to lower your risk.  Grab a cup of coffee my friend and have a seat while we visit.

Back in the late eighteen hundreds, men had nothing but lanterns to help them survive at night. Since fuel for the lanterns was expensive, they were used sparingly to say the least. Instead, they relied heavily on their night vision to see what was going on and to navigate.

Fast forward one hundred and twenty years, and things have changed drastically. With electric lighting and battery-powered lights that you can almost see a mile with, we have little use for our night vision.  I’m sure you have heard the expression that what you don’t use, you lose?  Well that is very true.

You see, the human body was designed to be able to adapt to its environment, and if something isn’t used, then your body loses the ability to use it. Remember back when you were a kid, how much better you could see in the dark than you can now? You were born with the ability to see in the dark well enough to get around.  However, after years of seldom using it, it has degraded over time.

Some people have even lost the ability to see in the dark all together. Whether caused by an EMP or a CME, or Cyber-attack, when your world goes dark, you are going to be very vulnerable.  If you can’t see in the dark, your enemies will be able to literally walk right up on you without you being able to see them.

Now pretty much all of us have a ton of flashlights and batteries stocked up, as well as solar panels stocked up to charge them. You will be safe, right?  Wrong, those with the ability to see in the dark will still have the advantage, and relying on your flashlights to see is a mistake.

So how can you prepare to overcome this? The best way is to practice seeing in the dark.  You can practice this several ways such as walking through you house at night with the lights off.  It may cost you a few busted knee cap or shins, but it will help return your night site.   Eyes are muscles and as such need to be exercised regularly and not just during the day.

Try walking around your house in the middle of the night, especially on moonless nights. You could make a game of it as well. Remember when you were a child and played hide and seek in your yard in the dark?  By the end of the game, your night vision was much better than when you started, because you were forcing yourself to use it.

Try it with you kids or friends and see who last the longest. There are multiple benefits to doing this, such as learning to use the shadows to your advantage.  This too will be a good skill to have when the lights go out and the world becomes dark.

So what else can you do now to help prepare for surviving in the night? I have a few ideas and I’m sure you can think up a few more on your own.  Because no matter how good your night sight is, when you are exposed to a bright light, it is drastically diminished for a time.  What this means is if you’re pulling guard duty at night, you don’t set around a campfire and look into it.  It will derogate your night vision and it can take several hours for you to get it all back.

Staring into a fire is a big mistake if you are the one that is supposed to be defending you family or group.  You can almost walk right up on a person who has been looking into a fire without him even seeing you.  Preserving your night vision is very important.  If you must approach a camp fire while on duty, you should always wear a patch over you dominant eye to protect it.

What else can you do? Because everyone’s night vision is degraded by a bright light, you can use this to your advantage.   If possible, place a ring of bright lights around your camp facing outwards.  Anyone approaching at night will have a tough time seeing beyond it and because you are behind the light, your vision is partially saved.  This will give you a huge advantage at night and when you’re fighting for your life, you need every advantage you can get.

If you don’t have power for lights, you can use large fires, but you will need to build a small wall directly behind the fire to reduce the light in your direction. This will expose anyone who approaches to bright light without exposing yourself to it.  In the end, it will come down to who can hide the best in the dark while being able to see around them at the same time.

Night vision is something you don’t want to ever take for granted, because if you don’t you use it, you will lose it. Dangers will abound in a post SHTF world; don’t let the shadows be one of them.

Well, that’s it for today and I hope you‘ve found this post interesting.  Until next time, stay safe. Stay strong and stay prepared my friend.  God Save America!

-Sarge-

 

 

The Sgt.

Prepper, Patriot, and Proud U.S. ARMY Veteran.

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3 Responses

  1. CPT D says:

    Using outward facing bright lights, bon fires, etc. present a light signal that will be seen miles away. Better to learn that the dark is your friend and practice good night vision tactics and learn how to work and survive in limited light.

  2. Uncle George says:

    A Gen 1 night vision monocular with an IR illuminator can be pretty effective on a budget (under $500). It’s true that the IR illuminator will stand out like a flashlight to an enemy that has NV gear, but the percentage of bad guys with that kind of gear will be far less than the bad guys that don’t have it. You will not “own the night” with Gen 1 gear, but it may be better than not having it at all because the Gen 2 and 3 gear is out of your price range.

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