My Dirt Time The Adventures of Tom Sciacca

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Runner Up: James Perez

Here is the entry from runner up James Perez of Cincinnati, OH. James will be receiving a free Bridgford Food item. Here is his entry:

Survival Kit:

This is pretty much a quick and easy go-over for my families “bug-in” survival kit, the kit is still a work in progress and is continuously added to as I come across items that either are more efficient in what they do and/or more reliable in their purpose. My preparations are as follows:


For “bug-in” situations I have several 5 gallon cans that can be filled prior to utilities being shut off or in a sudden shut down event they can be transported to an area to be filled. The water can either be treated with iodine, chlorine or boiled so that it can be drinkable. I do plan to purchase a waterbob soon from your store since that also is a very good containment vessel for much needed water. Individual water bottles (stainless steel quart bottles) are also kept in the survival area of the basement. I do have individual sealed maritime survival water packets in a prepared duffle bag, along with a case or two of bottled purified drinking water (not spring water).


My house is rather old, made in the 20’s to be exact and is in a part of town that is slowly going by the wayside. It fortunately can easily be secured and offers areas in the basement to keep items that need to be cool and dry. If for any reason there are several exits that would be easily accessible by those on the inside only. For shelter in place situations, lots of duct tape and opaque plastic sheeting (think painters drop cloth but plastic), to cover windows and doors as quickly as possible.


In keeping up with I have started to increase my stores of food from 2 weeks to about a month and will slowly build my stores to be about 6mos. These are the items that we have readily available to last 2 weeks in our cupboard which will keep our stored supplies out of use until we need them. For the items on hand that are used on a regular basis:
1.) 15lbs of white rice
2.) 15lbs of pinto beans
3.) 10 cans of vegetables (mixed and varied)
4.) 3-4 cans of sauces
5.) Large jars of peanut butter
6.) 1-2 large boxes of pasta (varied)
7.) Frozen meat and fish that would be cooked within a short time frame of a power down situation.

Of course the below stored food stuffs won’t be easily transported in a “bug-out” take what you can carry situation. But, in planning these foods will be packaged together in mini type of containers, meaning that each container will have about 4 weeks food stuffs for 2 adults and 2 kids in which can be carried quickly and put into the back of a van (these totes are not meant for heavy use or carry by hand over long distances just strong enough to get into a van or cart). My main food stuffs are as follows for 1 container of food in which the staple foods are the rice and beans with smaller other things to add too dishes (the containers are a Rubbermaid heavy duty sealed around the top, and each tote will last in storage for 6 mos to a year). 1.) 45lbs of white rice
2.) 30lbs of pinto beans
3.) 10lbs of misc lentils and other beans.
4.) 4 cans of tuna along with 4 plastic packs of tuna
5.) 1 small canned ham
6.) 6 cans of sardines
7.) 6 cans of misc canned meat (spam, treat, potted meat, etc.)
8.) To be added: salt, pepper, spices, forks & spoons

In a “bug-out” situation see below for more of that info.

Misc. items:

· Oil lanterns 2 with 2 containers of oil
· Candles: standard, emergency and tea lights
· Matches, lighters & magnesium fire starters
· Hobo stove
· Non-electric tools (saws, planes & wood working tools)
· Ponchos for all family members and some extra (double as shelter)
· Survival Mylar blankets
· Brush removal tools
· Hunting gear which include clothes, boots and tools for killing and processing animals
· Emergency radios
· Flash lights (led & standard)
· 25’ of cotton rope used for whatever
· Feminine products
· First aid (regular first aid)
· 2 emergency survival books which would travel with us

There are a lot more items but some have yet to be purchased, such as a solar panel to charge phones or run small appliances.

Now on with transporting gear and the items that will help us with carrying all of these items for a “bug-out” situation which will be carried by 2 adults…


I keep these items to construct a shelter rather than carry a tent. If for any reason a “bug-out” situation occurs I keep several items ready that are easily transportable:

1.) A book by Raymond (ray) Mears that I have read through and through and offers different practical easily made waterproof shelters which eliminates having to carry a large tent to fit a family of 4.

2.) A sharp camp axe for shelter making, which also helps in securing wood fuel for fires, and acts as a hammer when pounding stakes, poles or anything that needs to be staked down. Along with a camp axe a buck-saw blade with bolts or a collapsible buck-saw that is light and takes up even less room, I have the collapsible one that can make short work of small diameter logs for firewood.

3.) I do carry several Mylar survival blankets that can be used for several things besides a blanket.

4.) And always remember that there is a multitude of trash items that can be used if need be, there is always something that someone has left behind.

Back pack:

I have several items that will help in carrying our gear with us and allow to have a reasonable load without breaking our literal backs along the way. These are a lot of items but would be determined which ones would be used and which ones would be left if a “bug-out” situation happened.

· Stansport mountain freighter aluminum frame pack
· 2 military surplus sea bags
· 1 internal frame backpack
· Small cart with rubber tires will hold 1 tote and 2 kids or 200lbs. (see for different bike carts)
· Stroller that will hold a baby & small child
· 75’ of 550 chord to lash bags and whatever else to whatever I need to attach things too.

Hunting items:

· .22 long riffle w/ 1000 rounds
· Traditional bow (wood with items to repair bow and make new strings)
· 6 Carbon arrows with 2 types of heads (3- broad heads and 3-bullet points)
· Several hunting knives with small sharpening stones for each one.
· 2 small slingshots with shot.

1 change of clothes with 2 changes of underwear and socks, the clothes are different depending on change of year, but consist of earth colored items. Along with clothes footwear will consist of comfortable hunting boots and/or comfortable cross trainer shoes.

Food & water In a “bug-out” situation at least 1-2 totes (see above) will be taken if we are able to use a vehicle, if we are to walk a small cart will carry 1 tote. I do plan on making a pull behind cart that could possibly carry 2 totes along with 2 kids. If we are only able to carry our kids and back-packs for the first 72 hours or 6 days (based on a lower calorie intake). If unable to use cart or van food will consist of marine emergency bars with several packs of water along with a small pack of rice and beans. The use of chemical treatment and boiling of water will be used instead of carrying gallons of water.

All of these categories are still being added to, changed, rearranged based on available items. There are a multitude of items that I didn’t include because they are still in the process of being bought. I realize that some categories will need to be whittled down, based on the abilities of myself, my wife and our transport equipment. Each shtf scenario is or will be different and based on that is where our survival strategy will evolve from. I plan to upgrade our first aid kit to a more complete kit that would allow for much more serious injuries, our power items will be upgraded to allow for solar and wind generated power. The cart will be upgraded to be a pull behind person with a bike attachment, along with the internal frame pack being switched to another stansport aluminum framed pack. For now this is what I have and will adjust as I learn and tryout items that in theory should work but will find impractical in use. Hope this works for the contest.

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