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CCW Insurance: Protecting Yourself on Paper

BANG, CRASH, BOOM! You live in a gated community in, let’s say, St. Louis, Missouri. You’re outside enjoying a Sunday family barbecue in the late afternoon, early evening. The crash is followed by a chant of sorts: “No justice, no peace!” This mantra is loudly repeated as a massive crowd approaches your residence. Your wife looks at you and she is scared. You’re scared too. Now’s not the time to wish you had CCW insurance.  You run into your house and grab your AR-15. Your state allows the lethal force defense of an occupied structure. You come around to the front of your residence and notice a large group of young people. A few members of the crowd appear to be armed with rifles, but you cannot tell if they’re airsoft replicas or real firearms. The crowd is enraged. You and your wife call 9-1-1, only to hear a prerecorded …

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Gear Up: New Survival Gear for January 2021

Arc’teryx Mantis 32 CAPACITY: 32 Liters (1,963 Cubic Inches) MSRP: $169 URL: www.arcteryx.com We’re fond of gear that looks commonplace in an urban setting but also excels in the backwoods or when SHTF. The Mantis 32 is one such pack. It works great as a commuter bag. It has a large main compartment, an internal sleeve to carry your laptop, two external sleeves for a travel mug or beanie, an admin section for your pens, keys, phone, multi-tool, and more. But it’s also ideal as a hiking daypack. The laptop sleeve can hold a hydration bladder while its padded back, frame sheet, and aluminum stay provide a comfortable chassis for hauling gear on treks that are longer than your daily commute. It’s a versatile pack with subdued good looks.   Gerber Compleat COLOR: Burnt Bronze, Flat Sage, Onyx, Silver MSRP: $29 URL: www.gerbergear.com When camping, we’ll save cargo weight and …

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What If You Become a Target of Road Rage

James Madison once sagely conveyed, “If men were angels, no government would be necessary.” Had Madison ever driven a car on a gridlocked freeway he’d likely have concluded the same about the necessity of this article. Neither men nor women are angels. When behind the wheel of a 4,000-pound rolling ego-inflator, they sometimes become quite the opposite. According to a 2019 survey of Americans by The Zebra, an insurance comparison website, 82 percent of respondents admitted to having road rage or driving aggressively at least once in the last year. Further, 42 percent claimed they yelled or cursed at fellow drivers. Thirty-eight percent indicated they used obscene gestures toward others on the road. That’s a lot of anger, but unless these signs of frustration escalate, they’re relatively harmless. Our primary concern is what happens when yelling and honking goes too far. The 2019 survey also reports that 7 percent of …

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Reconnaissance: Training with Guerrilla Mentor

Many of you will recognize this timeless quote. Its lesson is simple and profound: Every prepared individual should be acutely aware of his or her own strengths and weaknesses, as well as those of opponents. Self-awareness can be earned through training and feedback from peers, but accurate intel on the enemy isn’t always so easy to come by, especially if that enemy is wise enough to play his cards close to the chest. This is why military strategists throughout history have placed such a heavy emphasis on reconnaissance — the search for information in unknown or hostile territory. “If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat.” —Sun Tzu, The Art of War Whether you’re fighting a war or simply trying to pass …

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Editor’s Letter: Chumming the Waters

I don’t know if any of us have been more ready for a year to be over than we are now. Unfortunately, all signs seem to indicate that the ripple effects of 2020’s various crises will spill over into at least the first quarter of next year. As I’ve said before, this year has set some unsettling precedents about how quickly, and how aggressively, our entire lives can be put on hold because people are afraid of the unknown. Or because people don’t want to tolerate opposing ideologies. There’s a very good chance that the widespread acceptance of, and lack of consequences for, nonstop months of riots, vandalism, theft, assault, and general disregard for civility will only serve to embolden malicious actors going forward. The idea that large groups of people can commit crimes with impunity, as long as they do so simultaneously on a large scale, will be a …

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Train Like an Athlete

From the time I was a young soldier, I was determined to master my craft — especially shooting. I spent countless hours of my own time shooting, dry-firing, and researching in my quest to get better. And I did get better. I became a good enough shooter to more than hold my own among my peers. But it wasn’t until many years later, when I started competing in shooting sports, that I started to understand what good actually was, and found my skill level increasing exponentially. The reason for my “leveling up” after so many years was that I was now training my shooting less like a soldier and more like an athlete. I wasn’t satisfied though. So, I started researching again. I trained with as many top competitors as I could, read up on athletic performance and sports psychology, on current research into learning and mastery, and over time …

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Vintage Electric Bikes Scrambler S: A Survival Ebike Review

While I was writing this article, strong Santa Ana winds had caused catastrophic fires in several regions of California. In the name of public safety, Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) — California’s largest utility company — intentionally shut down power to hundreds of thousands of people. The idea was simple: If there’s no power running through utility lines, the risk of fire goes down. Unfortunately, the most recent fire started when a tree fell on a power line in an area where power hadn’t been turned off yet. These events are yet another reminder that our world is changing rapidly. The evolution and progression of technology has anchored our dependence on the power grid, and this is making us more vulnerable. I want you to ask yourself this question: What would I do if a catastrophe disabled and destroyed the infrastructure that my family is dependent on? No more cell …

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Dynamic Combative Solutions: The Recipe for Precision

Over the last few months, I’ve taken several handgun classes that incorporated intermediate and advanced concepts. These skills have made me more well-rounded, but it’s critical to periodically check and strengthen the foundation they’re built upon. With this in mind, I signed up for a one-day pistol fundamentals class taught by David Laird of Dynamic Combative Solutions (DCS) in Phoenix, Arizona. This class was split into two four-hour segments taught back-to-back. The first half, Precision Pistol, was intended as an introductory class, covering basic shooting technique and accuracy. The second half, Holster Fundamentals, focused on drawing the gun from a holster quickly while maintaining accuracy. If you’re an experienced shooter, this may sound painfully simple, but don’t underestimate the value of these core skills. As Ernest Emerson told students at the Surviving Inside the Kill Zone class I covered last issue, “An expert is one who has mastered the basics.” …

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Marlin 336 Dark Series Review

Today, we live in a world of rapid innovation and obsolescence. Tools and technology that are common now are likely to be forgotten in a decade, if not much sooner. You’re probably not using a typewriter or telegraph to communicate in this era of laptops and smartphones. But there are exceptions to this rule — instances where the old ways may still have their merits. The surge in popularity of so-called tactical lever guns, such as this Marlin 336 Dark Series, illustrates this point. Old, But Not Obsolete The Marlin 336 was introduced in 1948, but the core of its design dates all the way back to the Model 1893, a rifle named after the year it began production. Prior to the turn of the 20th century, lever-action repeating rifles from Winchester, Henry, and Marlin quickly became popular among American frontiersmen, cowboys, and outlaws of the Old West. Today, those …

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The Latest Gear: Survival Whistles, Phone Solar Panels, Lockpick Vaults & More

Whether you’re a self-proclaimed gear junkie or a minimalist, it’s hard not to appreciate all of the innovative products that are being released in the world of survival and preparation. We check out several fresh items on the market to consider. Prometheus Design Werx Ti-Signal Whistle LENGTH: 2.19 inches MSRP: $29 URL: prometheusdesignwerx.com NOTES: One thing’s for sure: This ain’t your granddaddy’s survival whistle. Machined from 6AL-4V titanium billet, the Ti-Signal Whistle is lightweight, corrosion resistant, and almost indestructible. It can emit a piercing, high-pitch sound to alert others of your location. This makes it a potentially life-saving device — whether you’re injured and in need of a search- and-rescue team or just trying to reconnect with your friends after getting separated in the backcountry. And as with every- thing Prometheus Design Werx makes, the Ti-Signal Whistle exists at that intersection between aesthetics and functionality. It features a Mk2-style pineapple …

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Hiker Found After 12 Days Missing

Holly Courtier had been missing for 12 days in Utah’s Zion National Park when she was found alive on Sunday. Courtier, a 38-year-old mother from California was last seen Oct. 6th at the Grotto parking area inside the park after being dropped off by a shuttle bus. She never arrived back for the shuttle bus return. In the days following her disappearance, the Zion National Park System began a massive rescue effort involving park officials, K9 units, drones, and the local police department. Source: Zion NPS Above: The National Park System posted flyers around the park and on social media detailing Courtier’s description along with clothing and gear that were possibly with her.  Friends and family joined the effort, including her 19-year-old daughter Kailey Chambers. She had begun to lose hope on Sunday stating to ABC News, “Basically they said today or Monday was going to be the last day …

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Prime Day Survival Deals

Prime Day is here, and whether or not you were looking forward to the day Amazon blows open its metaphorical doors for the best deals this side of the Atlantic, we’re bringing to you some of the best, time-sensitive offers they available on the site. Here’s the catch, though, you have to go through our page, that way they know we sent you there. It’s voting season, and we all know how the sayings go, people vote with their wallets. The best part is, good survival gear doesn’t care about how much you spent on it when it’s saving your life in a disaster, or from a bad day in the office. Stay tuned for the best Prime Day Survival Deals. 3M WorkTunes + Gel Cups Hearing Protection The only thing better than hearing protection when at the range, is hearing protection blasting the best Miley Cyrus, or Five Finger …

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The Buck 110 Folder Review and History

When we hear the term “survival knife,” we most often think of a large fixed blade of some type and not a folding pocket knife. Yet, the Buck 110 Folding Hunter may make you change that way of thinking. The Buck 110 was a familiar sight for many years. Although it’s pocket-sized, it was mostly worn on the belt in a leather sheath secured with a single snap. Even those who know little about knives can recognize it immediately. It was worn by hunters, farmers, craftsmen, tradespeople, and anyone who had the need for a compact, sharp blade with a strong lock. When a single model of any knife becomes synonymous with an entire company’s product line for decades, and inspires countless other designs (as well as blatant imitations), I’d say that qualifies as iconic. History The Buck 110 was designed in 1963 as a folding hunting knife. There had …

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How to Plan an Extreme Adventure Fishing Trip

Fishing is a great hobby as it is relaxing, exciting, and rewarding at the same time. Many people enjoy fishing as a hobby, and some even take it one step further for the full adrenaline rush and ultimate fishing holiday with an extreme adventure fishing trip. There is nothing better than setting off on a long journey into deep waters for a battle of a lifetime with bigger and stronger fishes if you’re up for the challenge. Whether you’re fishing for Rainbow Trout in Jurassic Lake or Tigerfish in Africa, packing the right gear and ensuring you have all the essentials is crucial. Imagine being hours away offshore and suddenly realizing you forgot something important! You do not want to be in this situation especially if you’ve been planning the trip of a lifetime. Therefore, here are some tips on how to plan the ultimate extreme adventure fishing trip to …

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Human Trafficking: Hidden in Plain Sight

“We are like a meal … when everyone’s done eating, into the dumpster we go, and nobody gives a sh*t.” This quote came from a 14-year-old girl who’d been trafficked for sex and later committed suicide by walking onto a freeway at night. Not only should this quote impress upon you this experience’s effect on the human spirit, but also the reality that you might see someone like her being trafficked every day without realizing it. It’s a world of psychological shackles. In order to lift the veil of secrecy surrounding human trafficking, we interviewed several experts on the front lines. We hope to help you better understand how it operates and improve your ability to recognize it. In spite of what many believe, no one is immune to its reach, and it can happen in any community. As technology advances, so too does its ability to infiltrate people’s lives …

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2021 Winnebago Revel 4×4: Inside a $175K Camper

Since its launch in fall 2017, the Winnebago Revel has seen only small upgrades here and there. But for 2021, it sees some big upgrades that are sure to make van life even easier. While the new Revel is worth consideration, just know that full-featured, ready-to-go van life doesn’t come cheap. Let’s get the elephant out of the room right up front. A 4×4 Sprinter with every creature comfort you have at home is not an inexpensive machine. Pricing of the 2021 Winnebago Revel went up about $12,000 over the outgoing model and now starts at $175,000. While it’s common in the RV industry to see up to 20% discounts regularly on new campers, with low supply and high demand, we expect the new Revel to hold its price for some time. The 2021 Winnebago Revel is in production right now and will hit dealer lots across the country over the …

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Tick Myths: 12 Things You Should Know

After months of lockdown because of the pandemic, countless Americans are flocking outdoors to enjoy parks, hiking trails, gardens, and beaches. Unfortunately, ticks are also out — in force, in every state. Think you know how to stay safe? You might be surprised. There is a lot of misinformation about how to avoid, find, remove, and dispose of ticks. To protect yourself, your family, and your pets, it’s important to know how to stay tick-safe. What follows are the most common myths, misconceptions, and truths about ticks. “We have been studying and educating about ticks for many years,” said Dr. Stephen Rich, professor of microbiology and director of the Laboratory of Medical Zoology at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. We reached out to Dan Wolff (aka Tick Man Dan), founder of TickEase.com, to separate fact from fiction. Read on for more information from the Tick Man about these blood-sucking creepy …

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The Best Water Filters for Backpacking

We tested the best water filters and purifiers for your next backpacking trip into the great outdoors. You don’t need much to have a successful backpacking trip. Yes, you’ll need some gear (like a tent, a sleeping bag, and a pack), but most of all, you’ll need a way to get clean and safe water while on the trail. While we explain more in-depth about how water filters work and how to choose below, here are a few things that will help you through this guide. There are many different methods of filtering (or treating) water. The most common methods are through a cartridge or tube, with either activated carbon, UV light, or chemicals. Filters also come in different styles: straw-style, pump filters, gravity filters, and UV or tablet treatments. Know that they all make water safe to drink but differ slightly in size, durability, and price. We’ve spoken to thru-hikers, put many …

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Learn How to Fish: 5 Books for Beginning Anglers

Do you know someone who is interested in learning how to fish? If you’re interested in hitting the water for fun or for food, we’ve got five books that’ll help you put a fish on the end of your line. The earliest fishing hooks date back 42,000 years, and likely, humans have been attempting to catch our aquatic friends for much longer. Luckily, you don’t have to carve a hook from bone to get started on your local water anymore. And with social distancing now a priority for many, fishing licenses have seen an uptick. Minnesota reported an 11% increase in fishing license sales, and West Virginia reported a whopping 40% increase in both hunting and fishing licenses in the month of June. Luckily, these guide books provide a wealth of knowledge that you can carry along with you in your pack. Whether you want to fly fish, throw a …

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Today’s Bargains: 6 Outstanding Outdoor Gear Deals

Great outdoor gear at an amazing price: That’s our goal each week. Check out the bargains below and save on gear for your next adventure. Oakley Sunglasses — Valve & MPH Chainlink: $50-55 (65-68% Off) These Oakley sunglasses are already around $100 off the regular price, and now you can get free shipping too! Use the code GEAR50 for the Valve style and the code GEAR5499 for the MPH Chainlink style. Klean Kanteen 64oz. Insulated Water Bottle: $23 (62% Off) This stainless steel water bottle from Klean Kanteen keeps drinks hot for up to 20 hours and cold for up to 50 hours. Also, the loop cap allows you to easily attach it to your backpack for any adventure. Take advantage of this amazing discount now, as the deal ends August 3. Granite Gear Nimbus Trace Access Pack — Women’s: $125 (66% Off) This excellent-quality backpack has a 60-pound load rating, and the pack itself …

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