Most people that have been paying any attention to the news lately would likely agree that things have been precarious to say the least. From natural disasters like tornadoes, earthquakes and tsunamis, to man-made ones such as wars, revolutions and catastrophic industrial accidents, it’s sometimes hard to dismiss the words of those that believe that this era of civilization is coming to an end. Regardless of how credible you believe these claims are, even the most skeptical would agree that it’s a good idea to be prepared for a life threatening disaster.
One of the most basic parts of preparation has always been to have the proper supplies ready. One increasingly popular strategy has been to bury a survival cache.
A survival cache is basically just a survival kit in a strong sealed container that will allow you to bury it. It should be strong and well-sealed so that its contents will be ready when you need them.
Necessities to include:
For my cache, I’ve chosen to include what I consider to be basic necessities: Non-perishable food, bottled water, warm clothing, first-aid supplies, a tent, a warm sleeping bag, a radio, a good knife, a multi-tool, a quality LED flashlight, headlamp or lantern and extra batteries. I would also include some basic fishing and hunting supplies.
This may seem like a lot, but these items are invaluable should you need them, and there’s no rule that says you can’t bury more than one container.
You may also want to include some items simply for their potential trade value. Tobacco, liquor, chocolate, flashlight bulbs, batteries, soap, deodorant, toothpaste and any other things that, while being generally inexpensive creature-comfort items, would likely become far more valuable should they suddenly become unavailable. Human aid can quickly become the most sought-after resource, and trade items are a good tool to help attain it.
Burying the cache:
You’ll want to be sure that the container you use to bury your cache in is both structurally strong enough to withstand being buried, as well as being impervious to moisture. One common container is a burial tube. These can either be purchased, or you can make your own from something as simple as PVC pipe. If you make your own, remember to provide yourself with a way to get it open later, such as a threaded cap or by burying a tool along with it.
It’s a good idea to store all items that are susceptible to air and moisture in vacuum bags within the cache. It’s also a good idea to include oxygen and moisture absorbers in the cache and airtight bags. This will help protect extra sensitive items such as food, clothing, electronics, batteries, and ammunition.
Bury the cache so that the top is a few feet below ground; deep enough to avoid being disturbed, but not so deep that it will take too long to dig up. Be sure to make a detailed map of where your cache is, and keep this map somewhere safe, where it won’t be forgotten.
The hope is that you will never need to retrieve your cache, but it will be there, ready and waiting if you do.
Tom Huntington writes about outdoor survival and emergency preparedness issues for the Coast Products website.
Staying above the water Line!