A Few Ideas on How to Prep When it’s Cold Outside
If winter and its freezing temperatures are making you depressed, I want to give you a few ideas on how to prep and help pass the time. No, this is not one of those “how to prep for winter” types of articles.
Instead, I’m going to give you a few ideas that don’t require you to go hiking, to go outside and build a solar cooker and test it. These are things you can do in the comfort of your own home, most with little effort, but they will give you that feeling that you’re productive. And you will be.
#1. Try making a clay pot heater
…or any other indoor project for that matter. Now, don’t get your hopes up, these heaters won’t be able to heat up a whole room, however, they will help in an emergency. If, for some reason, none of your other heating options will work, you’ll be able to use this heater to at least keep your hands and feet warm.
Warning: candles are a fire hazard so be sure to supervise the thing every minute it’s running. There are lots of youtube videos about clay pot heaters you can watch. (Editors note: Please watch this warning video about clay pots. They can be very, very dangerous.)
#2. Watch a movie
There are plenty of survival movies you can watch with your family and learn a thing or two. While many of them are full of errors, I still enjoy them and I’m sure many other preppers do. If your family is not on board with you with regards to prepping, this could be a great way to open their eyes, if only just a little bit.
Recommendations: History Channel’s Alone series (not a movie, a TV show but really good), The Way Back (2010), Children of Men (2006), Volcano (1997).
#3. Make Plans
Don’t stop to making survival plans. Winter is the perfect time to plan for the year ahead, set goals and think of ways of achieving them. Of course, making or refining your survival plans should be a top priority.
If you’ve already done your basic planning, consider improving them by:
- figuring out how to make more room for your increasing stockpile
- reviewing your gear to see if any of the items you have are low quality
- printing better/more maps of your area and re-adding the points of interest with a marker
- prepping for disasters and emergencies you haven’t yet considered
- finding your blind spots and making plans to improve them (e.g. if you’re not prepping to bug out, you should definitely start planning for it)
#4. Perform a full inspection…
…of all your gear, your food, water and meds stockpile, your bug out bag, even of your EDC!
- that your electronics are still functional
- for leaky or discharged batteries
- your propane heater
- your generator
- that your hand-crank devices are still functional
- that your fuel tank is full or almost full, and make a mental note to always keep it full
- the gear inside your car
- Your medical equipment (ever tested your newly bought thermometer, for instance?)
Pay particular attention to items that have never been used. You definitely want to put them to the test more than a few times, to ensure they’re going to hold up in a survival situation.
Inspecting your stockpile can save you money by not having to throw away food that would otherwise spoil. If a tuna can is close to its expiration date, you may want to take it out, eat it, and re-add to your shopping list.
#5. Learn how to use your gear
Come on, admit it: you have at least one piece of gear you don’t know how to use. Wouldn’t this be a great time to play with it a little bit and see how it works? Well, you won’t be able to test everything indoors (some items are fire hazards) but you can safely play around with:
- Paracord (try to make some knots)
- HAM radio
- emergency radio
- …and so on.
Survival and preparedness are complex and, as a result, they have a lot of issues and controversies. The more you read, however, the closer to the truth you’ll get. The bugging in versus bugging out dilemma, what things are found in water that filters can and cannot purify, whether or not you should tell others about your preps, how to handle cashiers when they ask you why you buy too much of one thing – these are just some of the things that’ve caused heated debates (and still do).
Knowledge is power, so take advantage of all the free info out there, read it all and make up your own mind.