Disaster Prep is Now Mainstream. Here's the Gear You Need

November 19, 2020 4 min read

disaster prep

Preppers, for a long time, have been thought of as survivalists, militia members, or members of fringe groups. But in reality, preppers are normal citizens who range from city dwellers with an extra box of canned food on hand to wilderness survival experts with a fully-stocked bunker. In fact, prepping has a long tradition in America that is slowly being rediscovered.

For example, throughout much of the 20th century, many Americans had a stockpile barrel. Here’s an example, per the National Geographic:

In 1979, when Alex Bitterman was in second grade, Sister Mary Jane gathered her students in the gym of their Catholic school. In front of her sat a three-foot-tall gray barrel and she asked the students to guess what was inside. A clown, they thought. Or snakes? The nun opened it and pulled out a wool blanket, a plastic water container, and a large tin of saltines. These items would save them, she said, if the Soviet Union dropped a nuclear bomb on the town of Cheektowaga, New York.
For decades, a barrel like this was no surprise to American schoolchildren. A stockpile sat in the back of Bitterman’s school gym, and a yellow binder in the administration office held a set of hyper-local contingency plans for various disasters. A variety of government-mandated civil defense agencies operated from World War II through the Cold War and provided communities with guidelines and resources to keep emergency response local.
About two years ago, Anna Maria Bounds began attending monthly meetings of the New York City Preppers Network at a church in Harlem. At a typical meeting, participants discussed contingency plans for all types of natural and man-made disasters. On weekends they held excursions: Bounds learned to build a fire, filter water, provide basic first aid, and scope the best on-foot escape route from Manhattan.
At GoSun, we make cookers, coolers, lights, and other appliances that are powered by the Sun that work wonderfully as prepper gear. Scroll down to see our great offerings, along with other items that belong in every emergency kit. We'll all list one of our favorite recipes to use when the grid is down. 

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Nine Essential Items of Prepper Gear

1. SUN PROTECTION – Sunglasses, sunscreen, and hat

Sun protection, whether sunglasses, a hat, or sunscreen, is vital for protecting your skin and eyes against UV rays that cause sunburns and skin cancer.  Other helpful clothing items include pants and long sleeve shirts.

2. INSULATION – Jacket, hat, gloves, rain shell, and thermal underwear

 Be prepared for unpredictable changes in the weather. Pack an extra layer of clothing for the most extreme conditions you could encounter. Must-have items also include a jacket, hat, gloves, thermal underwear, and rain shell.

3. ILLUMINATION

Lighting is absolutely necessary where no conventional light sources can be found. Headlamps and lanterns are great, but a truly great source of illumination is the GoSun Solar Light. 

This rechargeable flashlight packs 280 lumens of on-demand light. With an integrated solar cell, it has the ability to recharge using solar energy alone, but can also be recharged with the included USB cord. It has a lantern mode, spotlight ability, and a red strobe emergency setting. A magnetic back allows for hands-free use.


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4. FIRST-AID SUPPLIES

Any good survivalist gear kit includes a first aid kit.

Be prepared for emergencies by packing first-aid supplies with you. Start with a pre-made kit and modify it to fit your trip and your medical needs. Make sure you have plenty of bandages, medicine, aspirin, etc. Check the expiration date on all items and replace them as required.

 

5. FIRE KIT

Fire is great for cooking, but it can mean the difference between life and death in low-temperature situations. Make sure you have matches and combustible materials that can start even in wet conditions.

And, of course, if you want to cook without the need to use fire at all, we recommend the GoSun SportFusion, or Go.


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6. REPAIR KIT AND TOOLS

Let your inner MacGuyver out with a repair kit that includes all the essentials for overcoming whatever problem you face: duct tape, a knife, and scissors. Multi-tools that include a screwdriver, can opener, and knife are also great in a pinch. 

 

7. FOOD

This is obvious for any survivalist gear, but the amount of food you need isn't. Bring at least an extra day's worth of food that is high energy, salty, easily digestible, and non-perishable. Think nuts, granola bars, and trail mix. 

Want to keep your perishables from perishing? Check out the GoSun Chill, a solar-powered fridge that keeps your food cool with no need for grid power.



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8.  POTABLE WATER

Dehydration is one of the fastest killers in a survival situation. That's why you need plenty of water, and hopefully, you have plenty stored up before you need it. 

If you really want to be water ready, we recommend checking out the GoSun Flow. It's a kitchen sink that goes with you. The GoSun Flow is everything you need to purify large amounts of water and sanitize with full sink and shower capabilities.


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9. EMERGENCY SHELTER – Tent, space blanket, tarp, and bivy

Shelter is one of the most critical elements during an emergency survival situation. A hot day turns into a shivering-inducing night in a matter of hours, meaning you need to make your shelter as fast as possible. You can fashion a shelter out of all sorts of items: a ten, tarp, emergency space blanket, or bivy sack for lightweight options. 

 

Our Favorite Preppier Meal: Solar Black Beans and Rice

Rice and beans are a staple of the Latin kitchen, particularly Central America and the Latin Caribbean. In Cuba, this is called Moros y Cristianos (Moors and Christians) and is a very common side dish. Order it with Ropa Vieja, literally Dirty Clothes, and you’ve got the Cuban national dish.

 

 

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time:  35 Minutes
Yield:Serves 4

Ingredients: 

1/2 cup white rice

1 can black beans-you could sub other beans too if you like, and if you like more beans, go ahead and add another can. You could even go crazy and mix the types of beans

 


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