Top 9 Mistakes Of Prepping Newbs


1. Following the wrong advice: Many new survivalists become fixated upon the advice given by others. They read the latest preparedness book or blog post and automatically assume the advice given is best for them, without considering their individual needs, skill level or location. In order to be self-reliant you need to learn to think for yourself.

2. Not eating what they store: Many new survivalist fill their pantry with unfamiliar foods, thinking they will adapt their diet “when the time comes” this is nonsense. You need to learn how to prepare and use these foods now, so they become a familiar staple.

3. Relying only on their food storage: Many new survivalists think once they have their one year supply of survival foods, that’s the end. Don’t get me wrong, having a deep larder is important, just don’t overlook the possibility of needing to replenish your supplies, and obtaining the skills and resources needed to do that.

4. Not storing enough salt: Many new survivalists fail to store this staple in the quantities needed. Don’t discount the importance of salt. I suggest at least ten pounds of iodized salt per person as a minimum. For baiting game (illegal in most areas), I’ve put away several salt blocks. These can be found at any agricultural feed store and are sold for cattle.

5. Building an arsenal: I see this all the time. Many new survivalists spend thousands on weapons and related gear, yet have only a two-week supply food and no water filter. This is stupid. I love guns and gear as much as the next person – but I know food and water are more important to my survival. Sure; we need weapons to protect what we’ve put away, just don’t neglect the other stuff.

6. Relying on bugging out: I’m not a fan of the “grab a bug out bag and head for the hills survival strategy”. In most cases you’re better off staying where you are. Having a bug out bag is a good idea, just don’t make bugging out your only plan or first priority.

7. To much stuff not enough skill: Many new survivalists believe they can be saved through buying. This fantasy has been promoted by self-serving survival gurus for years to fill their pockets with cash. Sure supplies are useful and some are needed – just don’t become dependent on stuff – instead develop your skills.

8. Storing only one type of food: More than a few new survivalists have made this mistake. I can’t remember exactly where I read it, I think it was on another survival blog – but the author suggested his readers store hundreds of pounds of wheat and nothing else. While wheat is the backbone of my food storage, storing only one type of food, no matter how versatile is foolish.

9. Not taking care of pet needs: Many new survivalists fail to consider the needs of their pets. If you have pets you must plan for their needs by laying back the necessary supplies to keep them fed and healthy.

What was the biggest mistake you made when you were a newb?

8 comments… read them below or add one

BugoutBob April 7, 2013 at 5:37 pm

Until the big SHTF happens, we’re all newbs. Preppin’ is just preppin’. Kinda like studying for the big exam but you haven’t gone in to take the test yet.

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Blueflyer83 October 9, 2013 at 9:35 am

This was a revelation I had not too long ago. The one thing that has begun to make me a little more nervous than “The Man” coming for my stuff, is other preppers and military vets who haven’t properly prepared. These people will be far worse than the proverbial zombie most people are expecting to troll around aimlessly looking for food and supplies. These types will be ready to do what it takes to ensure theirs and their family’s survival. Good post BugoutBob.

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David August 25, 2013 at 9:58 pm

Those top 9 are great. As for my self. I plan for bugging in but can bug out. I prep and practice. I rough it sand bar camping days at a time and have learned the river and its bank fairly well. One mistake I avoid is pre-pack a first aid kit for burns, splinters, cuts, rashes, stings and bites. Poison ivy or a bee could ruin someones day. I’ve become good friends with others that do the same. A lone wolf can only talk to him self for so long.

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phil h January 16, 2014 at 5:37 pm

For me 6 months supplies should be sufficient just make sure you have plenty storage jars bags etc coz when spring arrives thats when we plan for next winter drying out foods etc also I think getting closer to the coast maybe a good idea in winter as there is always a food supplie

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Caveman February 5, 2014 at 7:39 am

I am just getting started at getting ready !! I will soon become a specialist ! Doing my homework now and thinking of ways to become a pro at this.

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Mrnewb February 16, 2014 at 3:52 pm

I am fairly new to prepping and I am doing what I can. I am thoroughly convinced that skills are going to be so much more valuable than stuff. The problem is- I am not particularly handy or skilled…Do you have any advice for those of us who have a less than average skill set? Anything other than trying to learn what I can, practice, and build a few relationships/ community with people around me that would want to help eachother out?

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Really... March 19, 2014 at 6:26 pm

1: #irony
2: I don’t know if you’ve ever been hungry, really hungry, but if you have, then you would know that you’d be willing to eat ANYTHING; the last thing you’d care about is if you like the taste or not.
3: Agreed, but personally I think you should aim for more than 1 years worth.
4: I’m sorry, I don’t know how whatsoever salt is relevant to this, it would be interesting if you could discuss it in more detail.
5: Couldn’t agree more, but I think this is a very rare mistike and thus shouldn’t be in your top 9. Think about it, almost everyone willing to spend 1000′s (as you suggested) on weapons won’t have made such a commitment without doing there homework first.
6: If you are trying to explain the top 9 mistakes, please don’t include a point based on personal opinion, you might not like the idea of bugging, but that doesn’t necessarily make it a top mistake made by preppers.
7: This sounds like something someone with a lack of cash would say to make themselves feel better (no offense to anyone intended). Because really, at the end of the day, if you have loads of food , weapons, a bunker maybe etc. you have a high chance of survival. On the other hand, you can have all the skill in the world, but unless you have food etc. your chance of survival is much slimmer. In other words, I would say it is more like 70-80% gear and 20-30% skill.
8: I understand why you’d want different types of food, variation in your diet and all; but foolish? Cummon, like I said with no.2 when the shtf and you are hungry, you won’t give one.
9: I agree, but then it is a subjective matter and depends on your view of the value of your pets life when your own is at stake; therefore I don’t think it should be in your top 9.

Thanks for the read though, really interesting to see what others have to say :D

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Andrew March 28, 2014 at 1:30 pm

You know, I am a friggin genius and I know much more than 99.9% of folks out there prepping. You sir, have hit the nail on the head and put me to shame with this page. Each and every point seems well-reasoned and an accurate description of the most common prepping mistakes. Thank you.

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