Let's face it, how can one prepare for the "unexpected"? Or should we be asking the question: "How can I prepare for every possible scenario?" The answer is simple... You cannot, but you can be very well prepared for just about anything by following a few simple guide lines. These guide lines are what I like to call "The 5 Weapons of Survival."
We will go over these in a minute, I want to take this time to mentally prepare you for what we are about to go over. Picture this event: You and your loved ones are on your way to your parents house for Christmas. The snow has been falling for a while and it seems to just be getting worse. You are used to driving in the snow so this is a walk in the park for you. Suddenly, your vehicle hits a patch of black ice and sends you spinning out of control. The vehicle finally comes to a stop in the ditch along the side of the road. Everyone is fine, but you are now seriously stuck. To make matters worse you are on a rural road in the mountains with no cell phone reception. You think back and do not remember seeing another vehicle or home for miles. The temperature outside is 12 degrees Fahrenheit. It is another 50 miles to your parents house. What are you going to do? Your family is depending on you, and better yet you have an infant in the vehicle with you.
This is a tough situation no matter how you slice it, but there are things you could have to make this easier to get through. That brings us to the 5 Weapons of Survival. This is 5 areas of survival you will want to cover in any situation at any length to make a bad day better. They are Light/Energy, Food, Shelter, Water and Security. Let's look at each one of these a little more closely.
This can be anything from a flashlight with extra batteries to a full on roaring fire. This could keep you warm on a cold day or light up your way along a dark path. You could even cook food for yourself in a really bad situation.
When most people think of food they think hamburgers and hotdogs, maybe a nice steak dinner with potatoes, but really your body only needs a surprising amount of food to sustain life. This weapon of survival could encompass anything from caffeine pills to a four course meal.
This is an important one. How are you going to fight the elements. This weapon of survival is things like current standing structure such as houses or other buildings, an emergency blanket, a tent or even a make shift hut from sticks and leaves.
Ok so right off the bat, people ask me what am I supporse to do carry water with me everywhere I go. My answer is always the same: "well yes that would be the best option and would put you ahead of the pack when it comes to survival." The simple answer is that this weapon of survival could be a means of water collection such as a ziplock bag or other container that will hold water and iodine tablets or even a fire to boil or heat the water to the point of purification. The best way to cover this weapon of survival would be a mini water filtration system from a company such as Katadyn or Sweetwater and a water bladder or bottle.
This, in my opion, is the most important weapon of survival. For those of us that are comfortable carrying guns then this would be the literail weapon of survival that you would want to have on you at all times, but that does not give the people who are not comfortable with guns the excuse to leave this wepaon of survival out of the picture. For those people this could be a pocket knife or maybe a multitool that can be used several different ways, a machete or maybe even a Hatchet. Whatever you feel most comfortable with protecting you and your family and, in the event of complete SHTF, can be used to harvest game for food, is the best option for you.
As always stay safe and prepared out there and remember: Peace through Precision!