Generally speaking, preppers think in terms of doing things without the use of the Internet. Oh, we use the Internet in our day-to-day lives; as well as using it to network with other preppers and learn about survival skills, but other than that, we tend to think and act like when the SHTF, the Internet is going to disappear.
While that may happen, there are lots of possible disaster scenarios where the Internet will still be intact and we’ll still be able to make good use of it.
Even before a disaster might strike, we can learn a lot of valuable information from the Internet; information that can make it easier for us to survive when the disaster finally comes.
Like it or not, we live in the information age and the Internet is a large part of that. So, we might as well make use of it as much as we can; at least while it’s still here.
There are even websites out there which are useful for preppers, providing valuable information and services, which will make it easier for us to have warning about disasters and survive them when they come.
Here are a few of my favorites:
I probably use YouTube more than any other single website for my prepping. You can learn just about anything you want to through YouTube, storing up knowledge for the time when you need it. Recently, I’ve been using it to bone up on my medical skills, especially first aid skills for dealing with wounds of all types.
Do you know how to treat a sucking chest wound? Well, you can find out how on YouTube. I also use it a lot to learn about gunsmithing, so that I can both repair and modify my guns.
The one thing you have to watch out for on YouTube is that you need to verify the quality of the information that you are receiving. Not all videos are created equal and not all video creators are equal either.
The easiest way to verify the information is to watch two or three videos about each thing you want to learn. That way, you can compare them to each other. This also provides a way of filling in the details that one video creator or another might have forgotten to include.
While most bug-out-bag lists don’t include it, you should have copies of all your family’s critical records as part of your bug-out bag. While carrying all that paper might be a problem, it’s not a problem to scan them all and put them on a thumb drive.
Since you’ll already have them scanned, upload a set to dropbox or one of the other online storage sites as well. That way, if you have to bug out and end up losing your thumb drive, you’ll still have secure access to all your critical documents, wherever you can get on the Internet, IF or WHEN Internet and electric power will be available.
National Hurricane Center
A large percentage of our population lives in hurricane zones.
The entire Atlantic seaboard, as well as the Gulf of Mexico can be counted as hurricane alley, facing chances of hurricanes for several months, each and every year.
The National Hurricane Center website, located at www.nhc.noaa.gov provides the latest information on all tropical storms, cyclones and hurricanes.
You can often find out more about potential hurricanes on this website, than you can through your local weather forecast.
Living outside a hurricane zone doesn’t rid you of the need to watch the weather. It seems like every part of the country has some weather risk or other to watch out for.
The National Weather Service, at www.weather.gov provides just as much information as the National Hurricane Center, and it’s commercial free.
U.S. Department of Agriculture
It might seem like I’m getting a little carried away with government websites here, but in reality, there’s a lot of good information available on them. One of the most useful government websites for preppers is the USDA website.
There, you can find a host of useful homesteading information to help you with everything from your vegetable garden to canning. Specifically, you might want to take a look at:
- The USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map – http://planthardiness.ars.usda.gov/PHZMWeb/ -This map helps you determine what plants will grow in the climate where you live. Ten zones are shown, relating to the average annual extreme temperatures. The plant seed packages use those same zones, so you can pick plants which will grow well where you are.
- The USDA Home Canning Guide – http://nchfp.uga.edu/publications/publications_usda.html – Every book on canning ultimately uses this book as a reference. This is one of those old-fashioned government projects that is highly useful. The USDA has done extensive experimentation with canning and provides this information free for everyone to use. By following it, you can be sure that anything you can will be safe to eat.
- The USDA Safe Cooking Temperatures – http://www.foodsafety.gov/keep/charts/mintemp.html – In addition to providing information about canning, the USDA provides excellent information about minimum cooking temperatures. If you need to cook that deer you just shot and want to know how thoroughly you need to cook it, this guide will keep you out of trouble.
The American Preppers Network is probably the biggest networking organization made of preppers and for preppers. They have many chapters throughout the country, where preppers get together to share ideas and help each other out.
Their website provides a host of information about prepping, especially for new preppers. Joining the network is free and instantly puts you in touch with other preppers on a local and nationwide level.
Of course, there are many other websites that cater to preppers as well, especially blogs which various preppers create. These provide a good source of information about a variety of topics, so that you can continue learning.
Like what you see on YouTube, check out the information to make sure that it is accurate and correct. Not all writers are created equal either.
Internet is full of resources which could help you a lot during your preparations. Keep an eye on good preparedness websites, as well, but be prepared to survive without any of those tools if needed.
This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.