Many websites and channels glamorize the prepping and survival community.
In fact, if a friend or family member hears you mention "being prepared", they respond with...
"Oh you're one of those 'Doomsday Preppers' I've seen on TV"
Like it or loath it, that show has encouraged many people to get into preparedness. The trouble is, most of them think that being prepared is all about guns, bug out bags and bunkers.
So today the PrepperZine team has invited 8 top Survival and Preparedness experts to share The Number ONE Thing Most Overlooked By Preppers.
Lets take a look at what our experts have to say:
The most overlooked item is not a piece of gear at all; it’s knowledge.
One of the biggest problems I see is people stocking up on all sorts of survival gear, without really learning what it takes to survive a real-world survival situation.
To really be able to survive takes work; and to be able to use all that fancy gear people buy as a substitute for that work also takes work. I always tell people, “Knowledge is the key to survival.”
The best thing a person can do is stock up on knowledge. Take the time to research what threats you might realistically face, and then figure out exactly what skills, gear, and preparations you need to acquire in order to survive those dangers.
BIO: OffGrid Survival, run by emergency preparedness expert Robert Richardson, Author of The Ultimate Situational Survival Guide, is a website devoted to giving its readers essential tactics and step-by-step instructions for surviving real-world disasters, threats, and the very real dangers present in today's society.
"Knowledge is the key to survival" - Robert Richardson @offgridsurvival
Maybe it’s just because I live in a dessert but water seems to be a very overlooked item.
BIO: Brandon Garrett is a frequent writer and presenter for The Ready Store on the subjects of food and water storage; self-reliance, gardening and multipuposing. He's an experienced expert with a broad selection of food and water storage products.
"You can survive a few days without food but you can't survive very long without fresh water" - Brandon Garrett @TheReadyStore
All three have serious benefits and can be stored easily at your Bug Out Locations or where ever you plan to hunker down at. We also have a small emergency fishing kit in our bug out bags.
All of the supplies fit snugly in a large medicine bottle and can be used to fashion a fishing pole.
Doing research on the areas you’re in (or going to be in) would be wise. It is important to know about the types of fish in the area so you can buy the right gear to catch those fish.
I won’t go into all the different types of fish there are or this article would be endless but for instance, there are fish in Florida that are not anywhere else in the USA.
Some of the ones to consider are catfish, trout, bass, crappie, walleye, redfish, snook, flounder, Mackerel, etc etc
Below is a small kit I put together for emergencies and is in our BOB. It is literally just the basics. Fishing line, weights, different size hooks, bobbers, and some artificial bait.
"One of the most over looked preparedness items is fishing gear" - Cari Schofield @AmericanPrepper
I would say that a lot of people in my experience seem to overlook little everyday things when they are talking about emergency preparedness.
Folks will spend $1000 on freeze-dried food and even more than that on rifles and ammunition, but overlook somewhat necessary items like toilet paper and toothpaste.
Granted, you can truly get by without those things (Lord help us!), but considering the cost for them is minimal I tend to try to remind people about such things.
Some may consider them to be unnecessary luxuries, and it’s true they are not a life or death item, but comfort goes a long way toward reducing stress and keeping morale up.
Toilet paper, toothpaste, cotton balls and Q-tips (which actually also have first-aid applicability); I could go on and on and on.
My point is these are the kinds of things that are easy to stock up on for a rainy day but that also often escape our attention when we are looking at the grand design.
Kind of like missing the forest for the trees.
BIO: Simple Man from BackwoodsSurvivalBlog.com shares his thoughts about life on a rural homestead; gardening and long-term food storage. Other topics include alternative energy, emergency prepparedness, survivalism and self-defense.
"People seem to overlook little everyday things when they are talking about emergency preparedness" - Simple Man @BWoodsSimpleMan
Without a doubt, the most overlooked item is calm, rational, common sense thought.
All too often, especially in those new to the idea of prepping, a panicked response to the realization that all is not well in the world can lead to a sense of despair and hopelessness.
The more experienced prepper can also fall victim to this lack of thought by preparing for the most devastating, yet also most unlikely event, then falling victim to a less severe, but much more common disaster.
No one can say for certain that an extinction level asteroid strike won’t happen in the next few years, but let’s face it, it’s been several million years since the last one. On the other hand, natural disasters such as weather related events or earthquakes as well as manmade disasters such as nuclear power plant accidents or chemical spills happen almost daily somewhere.
Preppers of all experience levels need to prepare for the most likely scenarios and their repercussions before concentrating their efforts on the more unlikely situations, even if the latter are much scarier.
BIO: Denob, AKA The Prepared Canadian and author of CanadianPreppersNetwork.com, was brought up being a prepper although back then it was just called living.
Read his extended Bio
"Without a doubt, the most overlooked item is calm, rational, common sense thought." - Denob
I always recommend people start out preparing for a job loss.
It makes it easy to understand why you should be prepared, no matter what happens.
People need to be responsible for their own lives and step up and be prepared.
A job loss happens to millions of people each and every year. So you can start by getting out of debt and managing your expenses better. Then start to look at food storage.
If you having just 90 days worth of food storage, and Dad loses his job, that one less think the family has to worry about for at least 3 months.
However don’t put all of your eggs in one basket. Listen to our lessons from our Grandparents and learn from them. We need to go back to that style of thinking, and apply modern day technology and convenience to those lessons.
BIO: The Survival Podcast is a daily online audio show about self sufficiency and self reliance in the modern world. I conceived and created this podcast because over the years I have come to realize how fragile the human condition and the United States economy really is.
"Start preparing for a job loss, it makes it easy to understand why you should be prepared." - Jack Spirko
There are many overlooked items and my opinion on exactly which one is the most overlooked changes from time to time.
Today I would say it is clothing.
Do you have proper clothing to wear during the summer to stay cool but still protect your skin from the sun’s UV rays?
How many of us have improper clothing to stay outdoors in the frigid winter cold for extended periods of time? Are gloves for both staying warm and doing work stored away?How about hats and boots? Raingear?
Clothing is just not as sexy as the latest tacti-cool carbine or pistol.
BIO: My name is Rourke and I run the site ModernSurvivalOnline.com and have been interested in survival, preparedness, and weapons for over 20 years. I have some very strong opinions on the state of the world today – as well as a true conviction that we all have a responsibility to prepare for what lie’s ahead.
"Clothing is just not as sexy as the latest tacti-cool carbine or pistol." - @Rourke ModernOnlineSurvival
I think the most overlooked preparedness item is water.
Although water is an obvious need, many people underestimate the amount of water to store for emergencies, including only enough drinking water to last for a few days.
Additional water must be stored for cooking, hygiene and cleaning purposes.
"The most overlooked preparedness item is water." - Bernie Carr @AptPrepper
We had a late add from the pros at Good Game Hunting. They mentioned keep all your equipment maintained well. It's super easy to overlook and I've done it myself. They said, "Everything needs to be cleaned and maintained well. It's probably the military background, but I'm obsessed with keeping things clean. You never know when you'll need your knife or gun or tent. I break down whatever I'm using and clean it whenever I finish up. In fact, I even clean the sight, a Bushnell TRS-25, on my rifle after every single use. Heck it probably never gets dirty, but I'm buffing it down anyway."
So there you have it, 8 experts and 8 different items that are overlooked by many preppers.
I hope you have taken something away from this post. As you can see, there are many different elements to Survival and Preparedness and each person, no matter how experienced, has a different opinion.
It all boils down to you as an individual. Understanding your families needs and preparing for a the most likely events.