Dan …

I got a question for you. For the past five months, I’ve been seriously researching and putting together my own bug-out plan. I’m coming along nicely with my backpacks, and was gonna buy the Jason Richards books from the site for $27 (Ultimate Food Shortage Survival) to pack even lighter, but wanted to get your opinion on it first. I’ve checked reviews online, blogs… seems legit… I can also find the book on Amazon for $10, but he’s offering another 2 or 3 along with it on his website, which look just as interesting. Got any other important reads for someone who’s basically starting out green?

Though I’ve seriously known about the SHTF for over 15 years now, I still feel as though I don’t know anything at all. Your input is gold to me at this point. I have a deep dark sense that we’re all running out of time…

  • Mary

Dear Mary,

I went looking into this set of books, checking out various sites from a Google search, and checked out the original sales site as well. My first impression was, this is a scam. Not a single site I could find in the first three pages of a Google search was a prepper blog, emergency disaster preparedness site, or even a self-reliance related site, they were all marketing sites. My recommendations, don’t buy it. Good products and services, even new, don’t need to swamp the internet with paid reviews, word of mouth is enough to get the ball rolling, especially with products related to the prepper movement, we tell each other everything.

As far as preparing food to make it lighter for a BOB (Bug Out Bag), making your own by dehydrating is the way to go, but first there are a few things to think about.

A BOB is different then a 72-hour-kit.

The purpose of a 72 hour kit is to help you survive until help from somewhere gets to you. This is an OK plan if the disaster, or event is temporary and local, but a trap if it greater then the rescue services can handle.

The purpose of a Bug Out Bag is to get you from where you normally live, to a place where you can take care of yourself. When you put together a BOB, you include enough food supplies to get from Point ‘A’ to Point ‘B’. I have practiced bugging out, and I can give you a few tips. First, make the kit as light as you can. If you can hold the bag straight out with one arm for ten minutes it’s good.

Dehydrated food is the lightest, but your best making it your self, and experimenting with what works for you. We use a NESCO food dehydrator, and jerky maker we picked up on sale at London Drugs. It works great, but a little bit hard to clean. From what I have heard from other preppers by comparing notes, the Excalibur Food Dehydrator (www.excaliburdehydrator.com) is better then the one I have, but costs more.

As to what to dehydrated, I suggest the food you already eat. Since making meals from scratch is both cheaper and healthier, dehydrating it for preserving is just another step, and it is not that hard to learn. There are many sites on the net that can help you learn, and I do suggest Jo’s site first since she tends to post articles about the harder to get right stuff.


As far as any other books that I think should be at the top of the reading list I can name three right away.

  1. How to Survive the End of the World as We Know It: Tactics, Techniques, and Technologies for Uncertain Times by James Wesle, Rawles

  2. The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse by Fernando Ferfal Aguirre
  3. Fannie Farmer Cookbook by Marion Cunningham (A real copy of this book might cost as much as $120 so look on ebay etc for deals)

Best of luck…

  • Wolfe