Simple, Necessary Prepping Tasks For The Survivalist


From the desk of JC DodgeSo what do your preps consist of? Do you plan for the multitude of scenarios like a number of Survivalists out there do? Have you figured out what the basic requirements for all of these scenarios is? The simple list of Shelter, Water, Food, Defense, and First Aid are basic requirements for any scenario you might conceive, and having multiple methods, or sources to draw from to accomplish these tasks increases your ability to survive bad situations.

In this post, I’m going to discuss the “Food” part of the survival equation, and how to figure what you’ve got, and what you need. Although you might think what I’m writing here is “elementary”, You need to understand that there are a number of people new to preparedness, and Survivalism. We need to make sure that the “elementary” things we have already figured out are not overlooked when passing on information to the novice Survivalist.


Each of these types of food represents three days worth.

What types of food have you put back in your larder for bad times? If you are like most of us, you have a supply of canned goods. Yes, MRE’s, freeze dried food, and grains are good to have, but they are usually expensive, or require a lot of prep time to make into an edible meal. Most canned foods are simple to prepare, and relatively inexpensive to acquire, and their biggest downside is weight.

Food post1.jpg

We store our canned goods in plastic milk crates to make them easier to move if and when necessary.

Usually around tax time, I will go to the grocery store and restock, or more than likely add to what I already have in the pantry. We use some of what is there throughout the year, and try to maintain the amount of food available by restocking certain types as we use them. A few years back I sat down in the pantry and added up all the listed calories we had in the pantry just in canned food.

What did I find? I figured out that if we were just living off of canned good, our family of four had enough canned food calories to last six months. Considering that we would not be living off of canned food alone, due to the large and small game acquired throughout the year from hunting and trapping, and whatever would be available from gardening, I was pleasantly surprised. Considering the average caloric intake for an adult is 2000 calories, now I had some figures to work with.

Food post2.jpg

Canned meats and fruits are definitely good sources of calories

Although a tedious process, going through your larder and adding up what you have is important to giving you confidence in your capabilities. If you know that being stuck in the house without a means of acquiring any other type of food, your family will have enough for six months or a year, how would that affect your state of mind?

Food post5.jpg

2 servings X 180 calories= approximately 360 calories

The simple math of this consists of taking the amount of servings each can says it holds, and taking that times the amount of calories it says on the can that each serving has. I know this sounds simplistic, but I am explaining it because I’ve seen people only put what it says in calories, and not multiply the number of servings, and this gives you the wrong caloric total.

Here’s something a number of people I know haven’t thought through concerning their pets. Have you figured out what “Fido’s” needed daily intake is, and have you prepared for it. If you haven’t, what are you gonna do, let the animal starve after the kibble runs out? Maybe you’re gonna use Benson’s recipe for “Roast leg of Dog” (yes, it really is in one of his books)? We have already determined how much our dog eats, and what his long term sustainment requirements are. Sure, you can plan on feeding the pet table scraps, but if things are that bad, are there going to be table scraps?

Food post4

The container on the left holds 4 days of food for our dog, the gallon ziplock on the right holds 3 days worth. Having a plan for easily and quickly moving your foodstuffs is an important part of the preparedness planning process.

What we are talking about here is the “pain in the ass” part of prepping, but it is more important in a lot of ways than the “Tacticool” stuff everybody raves about. My “Realistic Logistics” definition is “What you have now that will get you where you want to go (location, goals or both), sustain you while you are going there, and then give you the ability to continually acquiring more logistics to maintain a long term existence.”. Being ready breeds a confidence all its own.


Survival isn’t just about the tactics and weapons of defense. You need to know how to defend yourself, but other things are just as important.

PRAY, Plan, Prepare, PT, then Perform


American by BIRTH, Infidel by CHOICE



7 thoughts on “Simple, Necessary Prepping Tasks For The Survivalist

  1. Pingback: Three From MDT | Western Rifle Shooters Association

  2. Those Datrex bars are not really suitable for providing nutrition for anyone doing anyhting but sitting in the bottom of a life raft. They lack pretty much everything you need to keep going doing anything that requires exertion. They are basically just carbs and not much at that (each serving is 200 calories, where as normal adult male needs around 2000 calories for an AVERAGE days exercise).

    So, not really a good choice.

    • I agree, they are emergency rations and are shown only for scale. That ration pack is more of a two day pack than a three day pack. Unless completely sedentary, it won’t sustain an adult.

    • Compared to actually starving (eating newspaper, chewing shoe leather, some people going mad), having a source of calories with some nutrition is immensely better. Your digestion does not shut down (after 2 weeks it will, to save calories on the way to death), then need extreme measures to re-start (with the usual percentage of casualties from all kinds of internal/external failures unless done in a supervised/supplied way- nice and slow) if a trickle of calories can be supplied. Add some fresh small-meats/gathered-greens-berries/multi-vitamin, and DATREX is not so bad (while you lose weight).

      As noted, canned food (wet-pack tinned, tetra-pack ready2eat, nitro-pack dry food) is heavy and a PITA to carry (clunky, not fitting into corners of pack too well) but it is widely available/reasonably priced (esp. from salvage/dented discount retailers) and does not need refrigeration until opened. Perfect for a vehicle-supplied camp. If you have a group to feed, consider the economies of #10 cans (about 3 quarts volume) vs. standard-size cans (sub-pint), but also the leftover problem if there aren’t enough mouths to finish a can in 2 meals. This might be a “field kitchen” issue, where there may be some refrigeration available on the trailer to hold leftovers for the next meal. Don’t forget to process your trash into a flat-sorted indistinguishable carried or deeply-buried package, so you are a “leave no trace” camper in good times and a difficult to read unit in bad times.

      Cans that fail usually have high-acid contents. Dented cans are safe to use if not leaking or bulging but may have broken internal seals that allow accelerated internal corrosion, so use early/first. Red peppers, tomato-X, pineapple juice makes messes and wrecks the labels of nearby cans, so use these early (within a year of “best by” date?).

      Remember the jokes about the Soviet Army existing on pet kibble? It might be better than starving, and it’s really cheap compared to similar nutrition people-food. Bait to attract food? The possibility of being excited to find a bag of dog chow should be some motivation to store something better for yourself and family while it’s so easy and cheap.

  3. PD,I agree with your thoughts but if folks are eating from cans in tough times and not just due to date rotation,well,really do not think leftovers from #10 cans will be a issue.

  4. Hi JC.
    Besides all the “Cans and MRE’s, etc., I think about where i live down here in SE La. Hell, what season is it…. Crawfish,Catfish, Oysters you-name-it!!! Right now it is summer and everybody has their favorite “Catfish Hole!! 20 pounders are not uncommon!! Just got done with “Crawfish” a month ago if that!! As the old Country song goes, “A country boy can survive!!” Even in the “Off Season” Oysters are still Good!!
    Back in NC, used ta’ stop at the “South River” at Butler Island bridge rd. in Sampson Cty. on my way to Peggy’s house and toss out a “Beetle Spin” off the bridge and catch a bucket full of Brim-bigger-than-your -hand!!!!! “Good Eats!!” I can go on!!
    Blue skies,

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