Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Dropping out. Going off-grid. Disappearing. Is it an option?

Well, I still have no job.  I am on my 4th address since I moved out of my ex-wife's house a few weeks ago.  I do not get enough money in unemployment insurance to pay my student loans, my phone, child support, and my car each month. A few days ago I got a letter from the IRS.  I haven't opened it.  What will they do, put me in Club Fed?  That might be a step up for me at this point.

Civilization isn't really turning out too well for me.  I'm thinking about going off into the woods.  Of course, it will be against the law. One isn't allowed to live in national forests.  But I seem to be running out of options.  I don't want to be supported by other people.

A big concern is my sons.  But what good am I to them now?   I don't see them but a few hours a week.  I have become Disneyland Dad but without the money to even take them to Disneyland.

If I do this I will have to be concerned about bears, exposure, and being found by rangers.

Summer is almost over and I think its going to be a hard winter.  I probably shouldn't try it before next spring.  But by then it might be too late.

So, I have done a quick inventory of what I have that can help me survive in the woods:

Water gathering and purifying
Field sanitation
Soap making (It is the easiest thing.  Sometimes, I wonder why I ever buy it.)
Outdoor cooking
Survival food gathering  (I took a 1 week course in the army, but I need to brush up.  About all I remember is how to prevent scurvy.)

Equipment and Supplies
1- Trailhead-6 tent
1- Army cot
1- wind-up rechargeable AM/FM/Shortwave radio receiver
1- axe
1- wind up electric lantern
1- Leatherman super tool
1 - double barrel shotgun, 12-ga
1 - pump action shotgun, 12-ga
100 - #8 and #6 bird shot cartridges
40 - #00 buck shot cartridges
1- shotgun cleaning kit
1-  6lb sledge hammer
1- fishing pole with assorted hooks, lures, and other tackle
1- cast iron grill, with fork and spatula
1-one cast iron skillet (it was a wedding present from my grandmother to my mother)
1- .380 semi-auto pistol, with about 50 cartridges
1- pistol cleaning kit
1- hunting knife
1- fishing knife
1- whet stone
1- magnesium fire starter
2- sturdy trousers
3- packets of cabbage seeds
1- packet of radish seeds
1- packet of fennel seeds
1 - good coat
1 - water proof bag
1 - 100 square foot waterproof tarp
1 - pair low-rise hiking shoes
2 - pair wool socks
3 - durable long sleeve shirts
1 - pillow
1- bolt/chain cutter (you never know)
1 - assorted other hand tools (unfortunately, they are mostly for working on machines)
1- turkey call
1- compass
1- mirror

Things I will need to get
A. a good back country emergency medical kit
B. spade and hoe
C. box of nails
D. map of destination (Idaho?  Nevada?  The coastal states have too many people.)
E. 100 feet strong rope
F.  candles
G. matches
H. wool blankets
I.  carbolic acid (50 lbs?) and a large supply of toilet paper (takes up so much space.  Alternatives?)
J. thermal long underwear
K. sturdy boots
L. water containers
M. empty 55 gallon drum
N. 5 gal gasoline can
O. animal traps
P. a spit for cooking
Q. rice, dry beans, barley, wheat flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, yeast, oatmeal, and salt to last the winter, hmmm.  Maybe 20 pounds bacon to last me till I kill something. If I eat 1/4 pound a day that will last 80 days.  Surely, I'll be able to find a bear or an elk in 80 days.  Hmmm.  Shotguns are only for close range.  Maybe I should find someone who'll swap me a an old 30-30 or an SKS for one of my shotguns.
R. cotton undershirts, more wool socks
S. water-proof and pest-proof containers for food and clothes
T. Dutch oven and tri-pod w/chain
U. several 12" to 18" pieces of re-bar
V. plastic sheeting
X. a cup, a plate, a spoon, a fork, a cutting board
Y. sewing kit
Z. Seeds and grape vine cuttings

Things I'll need make on site:
A. a fish trap (so easy)
B. a rain water trap (rain water is usually cleaner than stream water.)
C. charcoal
D. smokehouse
F. outhouse


Athanasia said...

Matt, isn't there a Salvation Army or Rescue Mission nearby that you can go to? They can help in a myriad of ways.

DebD said...

I'm thinking the woods idea is only good for the short term. It won't help with one of the most important parts of your life: supporting you boys.

Can you apprentice yourself out? Be a painter or carpenter's helper?

Rebecca said...

Your boys deserve better. Keep looking for a job. Any job. Sign up with more than one temp agency. If you can't find a full time job, look for two part time jobs.

Elizabeth @ The Garden Window said...

Please, please forgive me for saying this, my dear brother in Christ, but sometimes we need to acknowledge that we do need help and then grit our teeth and *ask* for that help..... if people do not know you are in such need, they cannot offer to help. Cannot anyone from the local churches provide a place for you to stay until you get a job/jobs?

You won't easily be able to see your boys if you are holed up in the wilderness....

Steve Robinson said...

Man, I'm sorry you're in this boat. I was lucky enough to have a friend with a spare room who let me stay for 6 months rent free after my divorce while I got on my feet. It was tough to take a handout, but I'll never look down on a homeless person again. There but for the grace of friends went I. God be with you.