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#84783 - 02/07/07 01:49 AM Re: Testing Yourself
samhain Offline
Addict

Registered: 11/30/05
Posts: 598
Loc: Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Good point Sue,

I'd rather practice at home initially where I have a backup (shelter, hot shower, microwave, pizza delivery, etc) in case Murphy throws too many curve-balls at me before I "take it on the road".

Being familiar with the home and surrounding environment is a good idea.

If you think about it, most car accidents occur within about 2 miles from home (I remember reading it, just can't cite the source).

That's because that is where we spend most of our time and is most likely where we would be when "stuff" happens.

I live in the 'burbs. My disaster plan is centered around bugging IN rather than out. I do have an out plan as well, but most of my planning is involved around getting home.

It would take a chem plant going kablooie to justify leaving home.



_________________________
peace,
samhain autumnwood

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#84784 - 02/07/07 05:07 AM Re: Testing Yourself: Humbled
Blast Offline
INTERCEPTOR
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/15/02
Posts: 3609
Loc: TX
Samhain,

The main purpose of the outing was to play in the woods, but my choice of gear was based on testing the gear I have with me if I were trying to get home from a remote work location. It was inspired by raydarkhorse's post on this very concept. I always planned on walking home if TSHTF but hadn't really done anything more than pick over my hiking gear. I guess technically it wasn't my BoB, more it was my Get Me Home Gear (GMHG?). A cheap bag filled with Walmart gear worked for my day-hikes and seemed reasonable for longer situations.

Unfortunately, gear of this sort probably won't get me 1,000+ miles to home.

About not using a tent, mainly I'm lazy. I don't like the weight of tents (well, any I can afford). I don't like the time and trouble of setting up a tent. I don't like trying to find a spot big and flat enough for a tent. Also, being 6'5" it's rare that I can find a tent that I really fit in. Plus, I can't drag a tent out to work spots with me, but a tarp of some sort can be easily scavenged. I'd rather just throw up a tarp or painter's dropcloth over a hammock. I didn't use the hammock his time as I was on a sandbar with no good place to hang it.

Now when my wife and kids are along we use a tent. A huge, annoying, complex beast that my wife absolutely loves (it has a ceiling fan and a potty).

As for a stove, I use an old (15+ years) Gaz S-200 butane-canister stove for the BoB mainly because I've found it to be rugged, effecient, and goof-proof. One canister will cook quite a few meals, Replacement fuel canisters can be found at Walmart. Sidenote: If I'm flying this stove stays home and I'm limited to cooking over fire. That's not a problem but I had some new cookware this time and I wasn't ready to get it all sooty.

You can see pictures of my test at my blog linked at the end of this post.

Really, what I wanted to get across was two things with these posts:
1. Load up your pack and go for a long walk! It's easy to assume you'll have no problems but reality will probably be very different. I do a lot of day hikes with a fair amount of gear, but this was the first time I humped my GMHG farther than across an airport terminal and those times it was usually strapped to wheeled luggage.

2. Certian things you juust can't take the cheap path and expect to be okay. My $20 sleeping bag may as well have been a hankie. My backpack could have been used as a torture device. My space blanket...well, I don't even need to go there with this crowd. Sure, some inexpensive things are great but if you want low weight AND high performance you'll usually have to pay $$$. I'm already saving up for a Wiggys sleeping bag and a real backpack.

Hopefully y'all will be inspired to test your stuff out. Sadly, having gear and using gear are worlds apart...

-Blast
_________________________
Foraging Texas
Medicine Man Plant Co.
DrMerriwether on YouTube
Radio Call Sign: KI5BOG
*As an Amazon Influencer, I may earn a sales commission on Amazon links in my posts.

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#84785 - 02/07/07 12:57 PM Re: Testing Yourself: Humbled
TomApple Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 09/05/06
Posts: 80
Loc: Suffolk, Va.
Quote:
About not using a tent, mainly I'm lazy. I don't like the weight of tents (well, any I can afford). I don't like the time and trouble of setting up a tent. I don't like trying to find a spot big and flat enough for a tent.


Personally I like the versatility of an Army poncho. It's good wearable raincover, it can snap into a sleeping bag shape, works as good groundcloth or lean-to cover, and if a companion has one too, they can be snapped together to form a larger shelter. They are fairly compact and lightweight. The addition of the poncho liner makes it even better for sleeping.

Regards,

Tom A.

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#84786 - 02/07/07 02:36 PM Re: Testing Yourself: Humbled
norad45 Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/01/04
Posts: 1506
Some nice writeups here. I also like your blog. What kind of backpack were you using?

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#84787 - 02/07/07 04:07 PM Re: Testing Yourself: Humbled
OldBaldGuy Offline
Geezer

Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 5695
Loc: Former AFB in CA, recouping fr...
With a poncho you can always make an Alpha tent. Not nearly as good as a real tent, but all you add to your load is two cut down tent poles...
_________________________
OBG

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#84788 - 02/07/07 06:05 PM Re: Testing Yourself: Humbled
Blast Offline
INTERCEPTOR
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/15/02
Posts: 3609
Loc: TX
Norad45,

I used a $30 daypack (Magellan Ranger) from "Academy Sports",the local sports/outdoors chain store here in Texas. The pack works well on day hikes and I suspect it'd be okay for warm weather overnighters. But it was pretty much filled up when I had both my regular sleeping bag and a fleece bag stuffed in it.

I'm glad you like my blog. Sometimes looking at it's pictures is the only thing keeping me sane at work.

-Blast
_________________________
Foraging Texas
Medicine Man Plant Co.
DrMerriwether on YouTube
Radio Call Sign: KI5BOG
*As an Amazon Influencer, I may earn a sales commission on Amazon links in my posts.

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#84789 - 02/07/07 06:09 PM Re: Testing Yourself
Blast Offline
INTERCEPTOR
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/15/02
Posts: 3609
Loc: TX
Craig_phx,

I like those setups. Is that a heavy-weight space blanket in the second picture? Does it really add much heat or is it just a convinent wind-stopper?

Also, why have the tubetent on top of your pad? Wouldn't things stay together better if everything were inside the tube?

Thanks.
-Blast
_________________________
Foraging Texas
Medicine Man Plant Co.
DrMerriwether on YouTube
Radio Call Sign: KI5BOG
*As an Amazon Influencer, I may earn a sales commission on Amazon links in my posts.

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#84790 - 02/09/07 02:49 AM Re: Testing Yourself: Humbled
samhain Offline
Addict

Registered: 11/30/05
Posts: 598
Loc: Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Blast,

I hear you about going to play in the woods. I'm plotting/scheming my next weekend escape as well in the next few months before I go nuts.

Quality is the best policy. I'm still using my Kelty pack I bought about 19 years ago. She's tattered but sound.

Looking forward to playing with my beer can stove I just made. It works well in the kitchen and the backyard; now time to see how this baby burns in the woods where Murphy lurks.

http://www.csun.edu/~mjurey/penny.html

Still playing with making a different stand for it.

As far as tents go, I have fallen very deeply in "like" with my Hennessy Hammock.
http://www.hennessyhammock.com/

It's nice not having to worry about trying to find relatively flat/dry ground to try and pitch a tent on.

Here in S. Louisiana I need some sort of shelter/cover or the skeeters will drain me dry regardless of how much Deet I coat myself in if not drive me insane buzzing around my ears.

Thanks for the tips.
_________________________
peace,
samhain autumnwood

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#84791 - 02/09/07 03:45 AM Re: Testing Yourself
OldBaldGuy Offline
Geezer

Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 5695
Loc: Former AFB in CA, recouping fr...
Today, since it has been a while, I took out my signaling mirror and made sure that I could still aim it. Must be like bike riding and sex, once you learn it you never forget it.

We were also clearing trails through the wooded part of the campground, and while I didn't have time to actually build one, I spotted several locations where I could easily build a decent shelter with nothing but the available materials mother nature had provided. As I did that, it dawned on me that I pretty much automatically do that all the time when I am in anything approaching "the boonies."

But, other than getting stranded while on a day hike or dirt road drive and needing to stay for a while, I am more of a bug in kind of guy, and I already know well how to use everything I have there...
_________________________
OBG

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#84792 - 02/10/07 10:04 PM Re: Testing Yourself
Craig_phx Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 04/05/05
Posts: 715
Loc: Phoenix, AZ
Blast,

I have never slept in the Coghlan's Survival Bag. I wanted to give it a try. My sleeping bags were too big to stuff in there and sleep comfortably; I bailed on the bag.

I had a campfire going. I did not feel like I was getting a lot of reflected heat from the fire with the HD Space Blanket. It did make a fair wind brake and helped keep the snow off of me. The Heatsheet was great to keep the snow off of my sleeping bag. It also blocked some of the light and smoke from the fire.

The cold makes you need to urinate more than you might otherwise. It was nice to be able to get up without worming out of a bag.

I now think a good survival setup would be a Heatsheet or HD Space Blanket for cover and an AMK bag to sleep in. Maybe a second Heatsheet for the ground.

Here is what it looked like the next morning when it was 15F. Had a couple Boy Scouts share my cooking fire.

_________________________
Thermo-regulate, hydrate and communicate.

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