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Note:  Due to the heavy volume of email that I receive, I may not be able to personally respond but I do read everything and appreciate your thoughts, comments and whatever else you wish to share.

Thanks again for your loyalty to Backdoor Survival!

— Gaye aka the Survival Woman


Contact — 43 Comments

  1. I liked your retirement plan, makes a lot of sense.

    It’s almost funny the way things have worked out for the Baby-boomers.
    The wealthiest generation of Americans, just when they start to use that wealth are told, “sorry, something happened… one third of that wealth you saved is just gone and you don’t get to retire like you planned. Nope, no idea where it went, it just went away”, and everyone accepts that.

    Like I said your retirement plan makes sense.

  2. Having grown up on the shores of Puget Sound and having spent many hours on the water from Washington to Alaska, I can relate to your choice of locations. Have a great day.

  3. Found you through George Ure’s site. I am also, from the PNW. Fell in love with Lopez Island years ago, don’t get there much these days. Your site looks like a good find.

  4. I am a old time Seattleite who moved out of seattle in 1960s to a farm outside of Mc Kenna Wa, Took one look at the world fair and ran. Have been practicing self survival ever since.

  5. Found your site from the Survival Blog. Glad to know there are others out there. I am from SW Florida, a long distance friend. God bless.

  6. Thanks for turning me on to the NEXT US. Great videos that truly inspire. I think you’re Ure’s best suggestion yet. Keep moving towards the light!

  7. Greetings from Eastern Washington, North of Spokane. Found your blog via Ure. Scary thing here is snow/cold/short growing season. Takes a lot of fuel to plow roads and driveways.

    Recent new-to-me highlights: Barbara Ehrenreich – This Land is Their Land. Savagely cuts to the core of class arrogance in America, also funny as hell.

    Blood, Money, Power by Barr McClellan. How LBJ killed JFK -The death of hope and idealism in the world.

    BioChar: How to lower CO2 levels, fertilize cropland and employ millions.


  8. Trying to maintain on the Southern Oregon Coast, 30 feet above and 1/4 mile inland of the surf line. It’s not an adress, it’s an adventure.
    When someone remarks, “Oh, you’re one of those Survivalists!” I like to answer, “No, I’m a Suicidalist just like you.” Haven’t heard a snappy comeback for that one yet!

  9. I live in South Texas, about as far as WA as you can get as far as climate and socio-economics are concerned.

    However, you have some great ideas here. Looking forward to your future postings.


  10. hi there from swaziland southern africa, looking forward to bieng part of your group and reading your tips thanks for your efforts

  11. Although I have visited your site in the past, I now find myself appreciating your site on a day-to-day sense of urgency. Your efforts to help others prepare for what is here and for what will soon shockingly “hit home”… is greatly appreciated. It seems that the one key component in preparing ourselves, friends, family and fellow citizens for what is coming . . . is that everyone needs to understand “Normalcy Bias”.
    Thank you so much for what you are doing.

  12. Hi from the foot hills of western NC. Found you from the Activist Post, great site. Yours is very interesting. A lot of Great info.

  13. Gaye,

    Another good article as usual!

    I thought I would throw my two cents in concerning crackers and Graham Crackers. The boxes need to have a date written on them when you buy them so that you can switch them out on an annual basis or make sure you eat them before your year is up.

    I had both cracker types previously that I kept for 2 -3 years and decided to eat them. Whatever preservatives they use in the crackers really taste bad after a certain length of time. The taste is so bad it will last with you all day even after using mouthwash. If you swallow it, it will take a day to make your stomach feel better.

    I can’t say enough about how important it is to rotate your stock packaged in plastic. The survival meals that have crackers I imagine they will last as long as the company implies, but if there is an expiration date on your store bought supplies makes plans to rotate them out of your stock. Canned goods bought at the grocery store will last a number of years even if they have an expiration date on them.

    • It sounds to me as though your crackers became rancid. Other than rotating your supply, you could repackage the crackers in mylar bags with oxygen absorbers and of course, store them below 70 degrees.

      Rancid is not good. Then again, the preservatives are vile as well.


  14. I asked my sister who was one of the unfortunate ones to lose her power from last weeks “straight-line wind” storm, to write a short essay on her experience (off the grid). She lives in the mountains of West Virgina and is a beginner prepper. Here’s her story…
    For women who have been camping or not. Without luxury or primitive, you can do it.
    When the power goes out it’s vital to have staples. Prepare by continously making ice, & bagging it for freezer. It will be available for keeping food cold, water and cold packs.
    A generator is handy if gas is available and yes, you can learn to use it. It will power sources such as coffer maker, water pump, electricity for radio and land line phone if service is available.
    Keep you’re laundry washed. You will need those clean clothes. You can hand wash under garments if necessary.(line dry).
    Boiling water will keep you’re dishes cleaned up, as well yourself when a shower is not possible.
    Keep jugs of water stored by date for drinking/necessities. Those with water sources in the city can quickly run out w/ so many depending on it.
    Lanterns, candles, lamp oil. All are a necessity as long as they are watched with caution. Flashlights, batteries, matches and lighters are storage items.
    Remember to conserve energy & resources. It may be hot, you may get cranky. Get over it! There’s no time for it ladies. Relax and go w/ the flow. Hopefully you have prepared and have what you need to get by “basics”.
    A propane cook stove is awesome. I used for 18 mo. while building a house. You don’t need a oven— besides cake is fattening. Coolers are good for ice and refrigeration also. You can perk coffee or have instant stored, remember for emergencies.
    Food storage is easy with the right mindset. I most always look for storage items while grocery shopping.
    Temporary situations call for having cans stored as chili, tuna, salmon. Crackers & soup. Peanut butter etc.
    Work with what you have and the extra you store. Coffee-bread can be frozen ahead, milk also so long as you pour some out before freezing the container. Keep watching your dates and use a necessary. Powder milk is a staple and evaporated milk will work in coffee. Dry goods are good for storage. Keep in airtight containers w/a date. Beans, rice, pasta, sugar, flour if needed. What do you use? Customize your pantry for you’re families needs or someone in need as a neighbor, family or friend. “Don’t be an island unto yourself” in an emergency someone may need something you can spare. You don’t have to “blab” about your storehouse.
    Medical items are essential. You should have antiseptics for cleansing wounds, peroxide, alcohol, bandages, ace bandage, tape, aspirin, scissors, maybe pepto bismol lip ointment. Anyway you get the picture.
    Don’t forget the babies and needs. Young children. Books, games to pass time. You’ll get a life with out the worlds distractions of tv, ipods, internet, computers. Keep in mind winter if you are susceptible. Those necessities are somewhat different.
    Most items you have already. Take it up a notch. Know what you’ll need in a everyday circumstances to get you & you’re family through. Extra towels, buckets, soap, etc. You can do it and not even “flinch” when a crisis occurs. Be safe & God bless those who prepare.

  15. If I might make a suggestion for a future interview….

    I just read yesterday’s with George Ure, and it was great. How about seeing if you can get Arsenius the Hermit formerly from the “living out there” blog.

    He’s been quiet for almost a year now and everyone would love hearing about what he’s ups too. And we all know he’s the Boss when it comes to hard core prepping and survivalist stuff.

  16. I have a great topic for your blog. Rice…

    We as “preppers” have been told that Rice is the basic building block of the prepper larder. Now we find out that most, if not all, rice is tainted with arsenic. What’s a prepper to do?

  17. Gaye – you may have already talked about this. I’m fairly new to you site. My niece told me about DIY shampoo and conditioner. I have long hair and have spent way too much money on trying to find a brand perfect for me, and I was certain the DIY recipe would not work. 2T baking soda dissolved in 2 C hot water. Pour through hair and let it sit there while you shower. That’s the shampoo. Rinse and squeeze out excess water then apply 2 C hot water with 2 T cider vinegar mixed in it. Work it in and let it stay a few minutes. I thought it was a joke. It was wonderful. I combed through my hair (I never towel it, only wring it) and just 2 or 3 hairs came out. Normally, with regular shampoo and conditioner – any kind – it seems like I have hundreds come out. My hair shines, is very soft and feels healthier. This just seems nuts to me but it’s true. All those years of wasting money on expensive products.

    • Well, Kris, this is a new one on me. Do you happen to color your hair? I wonder if the baking soda would strip the color. (And yes, I do color my naturally red hair to a much darker, auburn color. I do it myself using boxed products from the drugstore – the only way to go.)

  18. Hi Gaye, I tried to respond to your email, but my response was blocked by your mail server. Just wanted to acknowledge your message. I’m glad I could help. You have great content!

  19. I’d like to know if you would give permission for me to copy your 12th month program (one by one) for my women’s group at church. We’re trying to offer an easy, organized approach to preparedness this year and your is the BEST I’ve found. I would, of course, give you credit and also list your website as a source of further information. Please let me know.

  20. I understand I could get a free hard copy of the female book “are you ready”. How do I get it? Just subscribed today. Look forward to your info. Thank you for all you do to help others. God bless.

  21. I would like to suggest the FIREFOX series of books as guides for preppers. The material in the books was gathered as assignments by students of the RabunGap-Nacoochee School in Georgia in the late 1960’s and/or early 1970’s. Virtually all of the information came from “mountain folk” living in that area. The students’ teacher,Eliot Wigginton, edited the material and had it published into a series of books. The info provided is instructions on how to live off the land.
    I do not know how many books were in the series. I have only the first two editions.

  22. help I ordered george ures book growponics and paid for it and the windows media player won’t print it. what must i do to receive it,

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  24. Hi Gaye – great blog, I really appreciate how thorough your information is.

    Would you be able to mention washable sanitary pads and cups in a future column? Having stocked up on store bought female hygiene products for months, it never occurred to me that there was an alternative until I came across these by chance.
    Obviously in a short term crisis there may not be water to wash reusable products, but longer term these items (and good old-fashioned cloth diapers for those with babies) would be good to have in any female preppers kit.


  25. Dear Gail,
    Great Site, I was wondering if you would like to cross network our Blogs either by blog roll or direct link in another way, thus directing others to each others site specifically by information title. or what ever is easiest for you. My blog is dedicated to teaching other survival techniques Naturally and Realistically with over 40 years of Experience in natural herb medicines. And 30 years experience in Tactical Operations. God Bless,

  26. Gaye, I’m writing an article geared for survivalists with chronic illness or chronic pain, or their family members. I’ve lived with chronic pain due to fibromyalgia & spinal problems, along w/ a few other health conditions. In the article, I list & describe the specific preps I’ve made for my health issues, & offer them as ideas for other survivalists w/ chronic illness. If u decided to publish it, could u offer me any survivalist resources or prepper gear?

    How long (as in how many words) do u look for in articles? Any other guidelines I should follow? or things u look for in articles? About how many articles do u receive in a typical month?

    • I slit open the packages then put them in a 5 gallon bucket with a 2000 cc oxygen absorber. Then I seal the bucket with a gamma seal lid. Truthfully, if I were planning to store the pasta for five years or less, I think it would be just fine in its original package. The bucket, however, does keep the critters out.

      Hope this helps.

  27. We have recently introduced the world’s first In-Home Freeze Dryer. It is an amazing product that makes it possible for people to freeze dry their own meals, fruits, meats and vegetables.

    We would be interested in having you review the product and we would like to advertise on your site.

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