Hello everyone, it’s Glyn Gardner; your favorite (I hope) budding zombie author again. Today I’m going to continue talking about how to survive the zombie apocalypse. Last time I discussed whether to run, or to shelter in place. Today we are going to assume it’s time to run. For some reason the place you find yourself when you first realize the zombie apocalypse is happening will not support you or protect you for very long.
What next? Do you just run out into the streets willie-nillie? Maybe screaming and yelling for help? No! To steal a page, or the cover actually, from the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy: DON’T PANIC! If you’re going to survive the end of the world, you have to keep your wits about you.
OK, you’ve taken a deep breath or two, and counted to ten. Again we have to refer to Maslow. What do we need next?
Water! First and foremost, you need water. Depending on your environment, your water intake may need to exceed two gallons per day. There are a couple of ways you can acquire the water you’ll need. One, you can carry it with you. Do you have something like a Camel Back? If so, you can carry enough water on your back to last a good half day. If you don’t have a Camel Back, what do you have? Do you have bottled water? How about juice bottle or a thermos? How many can you stuff in your back pack?
The amount of water you carry is also going to depend on your fitness/ strength level. Water is heavy. A liter of water weighs about 2.2 pounds. This means that gallon of water you need will be about 9 pounds, and take up a pretty big chunk of space. This will affect your water strategy.
An alternative to carrying all of your water on your back would be to carry some way of purifying water. As I said last time, about 8 drops of household bleach will purify a gallon of clear water. This means that a quart of bleach that takes up very little space can purify several weeks’ worth of water. Your geography is also important here. If you live in the Southwest U.S., you might not come across much water in your travels. You need to carry more. I live in Louisiana. I can find all kinds of rivers, streams, creeks (called a bayou here). I can get away with a few bottles of water and my Camel Back.
So, you’ve loaded your backpack with all that you’ll need to stay hydrated. What now? Gun? Knife? Ninja stars? NO! Get some food. When we discussed food last time we talked canned food and dry food. If you’re going to be in one spot for a long time, those are the ways to go. They don’t spoil very fast. Well, they are also full of juice usually, and are heavy. In this case, I’d say ditch the canned food unless it’s meat. SPAM, deviled ham, and tuna are all excellent forms of protein. Unless you plan on wandering around hunting and fishing, protein is going to be a problem for most people. You can of course eat some of the 6 legged creatures you run across, but most people won’t, at least at first.
Now what else do you take? Dehydrated food (IK consider rice and pasta in this category, even though they aren’t technically dehydrated) is easy to transport, but you’ll have to use some of your precious water to rehydrate it. At this point you need to think weight v. calories. Look in your cupboards and find the things that are calorie dense. Peanut butter, crackers, fruits (Most will be ok out of the fridge for a couple of days.), any candy or granola bars will also be good sources of calories.
The mantra to keep in mind when it comes to food is: You have plenty of fat. You need plenty of water. NEVER EVER leave water for more food.
Now you’ve got a pack full of food and water. Everything a growing survivor needs right? Wrong. You’re just getting started. Do you plan on hiding in the Ritz Carrolton with a nice warm robe and blankets tonight? Nope, you’re most likely going to be on foot, and if you’re lucky you’ll be out of town and away from a bunch of people. That means shelter is going to be a problem. You might be able to find a nice warm bridge to sleep under, or maybe even a fairly clean trash bind to sleep in. You’ll probably be able to find a roof over your head one way or another. You may not however be able to find something warm to sleep under.
So, you’ll need to pack something to shelter you from the environment. If the ZA happens in January, and you live in Maine, you need a lot of cold weather gear, or at least a good coat, gloves, and hat. Always have a hat. It holds in heat when it’s cold, and can protect your head from the sun when it’s hot. I’d also suggest AT LEAST 1 pair of extra socks. As an old soldier, I can never have enough socks in my bug-out bag. I hate wet feet. I even have a pair of shoes in my bag, but again: I hate wet feet. Imagine walking all day, and then having to sleep up against a tree in the woods. What would you absolutely need to keep from freezing to death in your area? That’s what you need.
So, you now have water, food, and a bag full of clothes you’ll need to survive the elements. What now? Are you ready to go out into the big bad world of zombies? No, you aren’t. You need weapons and tools. Zombies are slow and stupid. What separates them from us? TOOLS! We can be slow, and can definitely be pretty stupid, but even the dumbest of us knows how to hit a nail with a hammer. So, arm yourself with the best tools you can find…NEXT TIME
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