Every year, you have to think long and hard about what you're going to get that special someone.
I know, it's kind of stressful, which zaps all the fun out of gift-giving. This year my wife and I made a promise to give each other something we need, want, and will use. And I'm following the same advice with my family and friends I'm Christmas shopping for.
My goal is that whenever they use the gift, they remember me. To help you all out, we took a poll of the team here at APE Survival, and here's what our staff want these holidays. So take a look, and pick one that you know the survivalist in your life would want. They'll be thrilled you've given something they can actually use, and not just another box of chocolates.
Any one of these will prove useful once the SHTF.
In the words of one of our team, a good multitool should always be the first thing you consider. You can easily store them in a bug out bag, car, purse or a desk drawer. But price doesn't always mean quality, so do a little shopping around. The trick is to find a tool that lasts, and if you've got any doubts a Leatherman is always a good bet, though Gerber have released a new model dubbed the Center Drive which is particularly awesome.
A cool gadget that could potentially save your special someone's life in an emergency. It's actually a UV penlight. All you need to do is fill a bottle of water and insert the Steripen, and it will purify the water (with a 99.9 percent level of success), in under a minute. It means you'll be able to drink almost as soon as you've found a water source, instead of going to the hassle of starting a fire to boil the water, just to get a drink.
Paracord bracelets are popular for good reason. You get hundreds of feet of cordage that can be used to secure a shelter, go fishing, tie a bag closed and even build snares for hunting with. Having cordage with you when you're in the wilderness is a good idea, and they even have companies selling these in team colors or with emblems that showcase your support for a cause.
It's one of the items you will just be glad you have when a disaster strikes, as it's perfect to keep at home with the rest of your survival stockpile. You've got a huge choice for styles and brands of thesse radios, just be sure to read the reviews. I'd find one with a flashlight and a USB charger too, as power in an emergency situation is going to be hard to come by.
In addition to being bright, lightweight and require very little battery power to keep them going. My personal preference is for lights that have been designed to go over a hardhat, as they've got an additional strap which feels a little bit more secure when I wear it. You also want a model that allows you to switch between different brightness levels for covert
What you want to find are the good-quality ones that local emergency services use. They're super bright, and will last for about 8 hours. All you need to do is "crack" them or shake them to activate the light. They're perfect for camping when you want to light up your tent, or to show you the way down the toilet path in the middle of the night. Buy in bulk for the best deals.
First aid supplies
Forget a simple kit, what you want to find are the specialist items that are actually appreciated. Choose things like a suture kit, Israeli bandages, or even Quikclot. Anybody can stitch up a wound with a little direction. The suture kits ensure the needle and thread is sterile before it gets put to use and also gives detailed instructions (sometimes with pictures) on how to stitch a wound. Quikclot can stop bleeding until a person can get medical attention while an Israeli bandage applies pressure to a wound so a person can keep their hands free.
The trick is to find a good knife with what's known as a full tang. This means the blade and handle are crafted from a single piece of metal, which makes them far superior in strength to a pocket knife. Other things to look for are the weight and the type of metal. Carbon steel and stainless steel are the most common types, and while everyone has a preference, I tend to stick with stainless steel as it's less prone to rust.
I guarantee you this is the only type of socks that will be appreciated. Pick a staple brand like Fox River which is a favorite among the military, as they are designed for hiking and have additional padding in blister-prone locations. The socks also wick away moisture, which helps reduce the risk of blisters forming and keeps your feet dry, and has support through the ankles and calves. Anyone who spends any amount of time in the wild knows how important it is to take good care of their feet.
If you can afford it, go big. Cans of freeze dried food will store for decades, but even a few packs of MRE's are good to have for an emergency in a car or in a bug-out bag. Pick the flavors you know your special someone likes, as there's quite a variety now with fruits, veggies and full-blown meals.
One of our final recommendations comes straight out of our store. It's the survival grenade, which contains a ready-made kit of some of the most useful items you could need should a disaster strike. Designed small so it can easily fit in a backpack or a glove compartment, it's a perfect gift for anyone who appreciates the value of being prepared, just in case.
The best part about Christmas shopping for survivalists is that we all tend to live by the motto that you can never have too much survival gear. We've all got backups for our backups, but what really counts is quality. Buy things that will last a lifetime, and know they'll be able to rely on it for many years to come.
Happy shopping and don't forget to pick up a little something for yourself!