I received an email from a new Prepper last week asking for my advice on what their priorities should be when first getting started as well as long-term. This got me thinking just how important the priorities are when you first start as well as keeping them straight along the way. Now I know that some people might disagree with me on some of these, but today’s post I am going to go over what I consider to be the top priorities for what a person should prep for dealing with whatever lies ahead.
Priorities are important in our everyday life and allow us to make solid decisions based on these. They are the very foundation of just about everything we do as Preppers and as a result, are very important to our mental and physical wellbeing. My list goes like this:
Water – Water is the most important thing you should be storing. Where you can go 3 weeks without food, you can only go for three days without water before death occurs. Good clean palatable water stored in large containers or bottles are a priority of any Prepper. You will also want to add items such as portable water filters and a couple of LifeStraws for each person. The thing is that no matter how much water you store, you will eventually run out. When this happens, you will need a way to filter water from lakes and streams for the future use. While homemade water filters can be made from pebbles and sand, they will not filter out the bacteria in the water. If you use this method, you will need to boil your water or treat it with some kind of chemicals such as the little pills you can buy at the store just for this purpose. In any case, You will want to have as much as possible on hand to start with as it may not be safe to venture out doors for a few days or months right after the event happens.
Food – If you want to survive then you are going to need plenty of food! Things that can be stored for long periods of time and do not require any refrigeration or specialized equipment to prepare or eat, are what you will want to store. These should also be things that you enjoy eating as well, as the thought of having to go for long periods of time eating something you don’t like, could very demoralizing. A good example of this is MREs (Meals Ready to Eat). These come in small packets that you just add warm water too to make them ready for consumption. Now I use the term “Ready for consumption” because if you have ever tasted them, then you know that they taste like they are made from ground cardboard and taste really bad! There are however companies out there that make dehydrated food that once reconstituted with hot water actually taste pretty good as well; Mountain House being one of them. There are many of them out there and the best way to approach it is to buy a few and try them before you spend a lot of money on something you just can’t stomach. Canned foods such as vegetables, fruits and meats also work well for long-term storage, but check the dates on the can for their expiration dates.
Shelter – Shelter is one of those things that we tend to take for granted until we don’t have it. If you have a retreat where you can weather out the storm, then you are further ahead of the game that those that don’t. If you need to bug out on foot to your retreat and it is more than a day away, then you will need to try to bring some type of shelter with you in case you encounter bad weather or need to hold up for a while due to unforeseen obstacle in your path. This should be light weight and small but at the same time it should be sturdy enough to stand up to wind and rain or snow at the same time. A good shelter can make the difference between life and death in some cases and is a must if traveling on foot.
Firearms/Ammo – Firearms and ammo are extremely important and their value is well worth their cost. When the thin veneer of society is pulled back, the ugly evil that exist in hiding all around us will be revealed and if you are not prepared to defend what is yours then you will lose it in short order. Knives and axes also fall into this category for building a fire and killing animals to survive. A good way to defend yourself may be all that stands between you and life or death when SHTF hits. Be sure you have what you need to get the job done.
Medical supplies – Medical supplies will be one of the first things to disappear in a crisis and you need to have a large cache of these in your preps. Everything from Vitamins and medications to Gauze and splints will be needed. If you regularly take prescribed medications then you should try to store up as much of these as you can and also look for herbal remedies to replace these with when you run out of what you have. Think of the simple things as well such as aspirin and lip balm as well. Something many people overlook is Sun burn lotion and Sun tan lotion to protect you when you are out in the sun. There are many good list out there that you can use as a guide for what exactly you should have in your medical preps.
Power source/Fuel – Fuel will become scarce very quickly anytime there is a major crisis and you should keep some stored safely on hand for your car or generator when the time comes. You will want to have a generator and some 12 volt batteries as well as some way to recharge them in your preps. In any emergency, you will need to be able to stay apprised of what is going on and that will require a radio or TV of some kind and it will require power. Try to have as many power sources as possible in your preps including standard batteries and a crank type flashlight and NOAA weather radio. Many now have the ability to charge items from a standard USB connector. This is an important part of your preps and deserves your attention, and in the end, you will be glad you did.
Money/Barter Items – This can take many forms when it comes to bartering. For barter items think about things that people really enjoy today such as Coffee and Alcohol because these are things that many people will be willing to trade for. Naturally they will be willing to barter for food and bullets as well; in fact they will become the new gold for all practical purposes. Once you have the other items above, then you will want to start working on these items. There is no way that you can remember and store up everything you need for SHTF, but if you are smart and have some really good barter items on hand then you can probably barter for the items you forgot.
Well, there you have it, that’s my priority list of things that should be stored for when SHTF hits. I know that some people will probably have these in a different order, but this is mine and I hope it helps you get started out on the right foot. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to email me and let me know. I try to answer each and every email I get so let’s hear it. Until next time, May God bless you and yours and remember to keep on prepping!