Junk on the Bunk: Cold Weather Clothing and Layering

Badlands Fieldcraft

Randy’s mom could teach us all a thing or two about layering..

We need to “dress for success” to be effective in extreme conditions. Our clothing choices become more important the harsher the climate and longer we intend to stay out in the bush. Since winter is upon us I’d like to share my lessons learned on cold weather clothing.

I don’t treat my clothing any different than I would any other tools; they need to be the right tool for the job to start with. I judge all my tools by how they perform and not by how they look or any other bias’. Whenever people discuss gear there always seems to be bias (caliber debates anyone?), but I really do try to avoid it as best I can. As MSG Dan Morgan said, we have to be ruthless in our gear selection.

Having lived, worked and trained most…

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Interview with a Mountain Woman

All you Preppers and Survivalist out there, take 20 minutes and watch this Interview.

87 Years old and this woman could out work 90% of the millennial work force and survive on her own without a grocery store!

If you ask me, these are the people kids should be listening to and not these self-absorbed Communist athletes and “entertainers”.


Remembering Mr. S.M.O.L.E.S.

From the Archives, 2015.


Yeah I know this is Mr. Burns, but you will get the joke as you read on.

Since the general feeling around the national campfire has been one of concern and worry as of late, I thought it a relevant and necessary article to review something that is actually practical and useful, instead of prognosticating on “what could be”. I mean if we are gonna stand around and do that why don’t we just all have a “whistle dixie out of our assholes” contest too while we are at it…seriously guys, get a hold of yourselves out there and act like you gotta pair.

In times like this I am reminded of the wisdom of my late grandmother who said:

  • “A Man can only piss his pants and stay warm for so long….” (Still love that one even though I have yet to find a meaningful use for it, although I guess as this is a prepping article, take it at face value!)

  •  “You cannot worry about things you cannot change; only concern yourself with things YOU CAN change.”

What CAN WE CHANGE? I cannot think of a more practical thing that is within our control than reviewing first our Training status (Software) and then our Equipment Status and Selection for our Survival Pack, BOB’s, VBOB’s, etc. (Hardware).

And for those of you that have never heard of SMOLES before, I regret to inform you he is NOT a real person.

No, SMOLES is an acronym used first by the US Army Rangers and SF and now by the Survivalist community to denote the type of gear that needs to be prioritized as we pack up for when the “Excrement hits the oscillator device.”

(S) Self-Defense

None of the proceeding gear is gonna matter if you cannot protect yourself and you get dead. Always prioritize your weapons first, regardless. In the military we called it Combat Loading, and as Civilian Operator’s it would not be a bad ideal if you adopted this same mentality to EVERYTHING you do.

Remember: Guns, Mags and Ammo before Granola, Gatorade and Toilet Paper!

(M) Medical

The ability to medically care for yourself or anybody else in your tribe is paramount. This includes your basic “boo-boo” kit to your blowout bag to your fully stocked Tactical Trauma pack. If preparing for your entire family, consider each persons needs (for example, allergies, female hygiene, etc.)

(O) Observation and Optics

The ability to spot the enemy before he sees you and to shoot the enemy accurately during combat. This could range from a decent pair of bionocs and a rangefinder to a pair of NVG’s and Thermal Imaging Optics, depending on the mission and your capabilities. Remember: Mission Drives Equipment, so consider your overall optic needs.

(L) Land Navigation

The ability to navigate the terrain with confidence and not wander around the woods like Hansel and Gretel is important in any situation, but especially when the bottom falls out from society. This COULD include your ultra-high tech GPS unit that (a) runs off electricity and depends on a satellite rotating the earth to work and (b) has a manual the size of War and Peace that  you have not even read yet OR a better ideal is to learn how to read a map and compass that does not depend on anything to function. Smart, simple and effective.

(E) Extreme Weather Conditions

This one is fairly self-explanatory. Note the word EXTREME. Prepare for extreme cold or heat accordingly. Anyone who has ever had frostbite or heat stroke will most likely tell you both suck, so try to avoid them like the plague and dress accordingly. Remember, weather and the elements can kill you just as quickly as a bullet if you stay out in it long enough.

(S) Survival

This is the biggest category, which is why I guess they saved it for last. It basically includes everything else you would need to survive that is not included above.

John Mosby in his outstanding Reluctant Partisan Volumes puts it this way:

  • You cannot survive 3 minutes without Oxygen

  • You cannot Survive 3 Hours without Shelter

  • You cannot survive 3 Days without Water

  • You cannot survive 3 Weeks without Food

Stay Alert, Armed and Dangerous!

Preppers Having Their ‘Moment’?

Another good read from NC Scout.

If there is one thing the martial civilian should take away from this goat rodeo, it is this:

But for me at least, prepping was never about having stuff, but rather having skills to back up the right items. Its about a mindset. The things people are snapping up now are unheard of items in much of the rest of the world, and while we could sit and point to other factors they deal with on an everyday basis, they also live fairly simple lives. Other corners of the world, for their lack of modernity, also do not fear the loss of such. Why is that? Because they have the underlying skills to survive. “

It reminds me of a couple of similar sayings:

“Amateurs talk Hardware. Professionals talk Software.” -Anonymous

“Amateurs talk Strategy. Professionals talk Logistics.” -General Omar Bradley

Speaking for myself and my clan, going forward from here we going to concentrate more sincerely on taking more of a minimalist approach to life in terms of “stuff” and focus more on learning and honing SKILLS.


So, preppers, are we having our ‘moment’? It would certainly seem as though a lot of folks are preppers now. Judging by the level of panic buying it seems like hindsight is 2020 for a great deal of people. 18 more words

via Preppers Having Their ‘Moment’? — American Partisan


Part One can be found HERE

A Worthwhile read.

Remember the Rule of 3: Three weeks without Food, Three Days without Water, Three hours without Shelter and Three minutes without Oxygen.

Water is Life.

This article is the second article in a two part series on water purification originally posted on December 11, 2019. The author, Lisa Vargas has her own site called I need to Prep.com and is worth your time to visit and comment if you are so inclined. She is also working her way through the…