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Security may mean any number of things. It may mean protecting your meager provisions from the pilferage of the local fauna. If you are in a remote area you may have to protect yourself from coyotes, wolves, mountain lion, and or bears. Man is not at the top of the food chain. We share this wonderful world with many creatures who, like us, are just trying to survive. If they are hungry, there is no malevolence, they, like you, need calories, and like you they will take advantage of what presents itself; Your job is not to present yourself. Whether you are in an urban setting, or deep in the back country, in this increasingly dangerous world, protecting oneself from predators of a two legged variety, is always important.

While you can protect yourself with a club, knife, or spear, a firearm is the natural choice in a survival situation. It can be used to procure food, as well as to provide security. With that knowledge, it is now time to choose the proper firearm. Convention wisdom is to carry the most versatile firearm available. If you ask 10 different people which firearm they would prefer, I guarantee you will receive 10 different answers. I have 3 answers. First of all, I carry a .22 rifle in each of my vehicles. This is an extremely versatile weapon. I can personally attest to the fact an animal, shot through the head with a .22 is no less dead than one shot with a 30.06. Granted, you have to be a good shot to take a head shot. If you are not confident you can make such a shot, you have ABSOLUTELY NO BUSINESS CARRYING A FIREARM. Now I will grant you that I would not want to have a .22 as the only thing between me and a charging bear, but for anything else, it is perfect. Another option is a combination shotgun/rifle. Savage Arms makes a number of combination weapons. My favorite is the .22/12 gauge over under rifle shotgun hybrid. This is a great weapon because you can readily take birds in flight using the 12 gauge, while still having the option of shooting a ground or tree dwelling animal with the .22. You also have the option of using a slug to protect you from the odd bear.

When I am afield, I typically carry a .22 magnum pistol. It has a lot more power than a .22 long rifle cartridge, but it is still light, and I can carry quite a bit of ammunition without weight becoming a problem. I practice with this weapon quite often, and have become very proficient with it. I have used this weapon to take small game ranging from squirrels and rabbits, to midsized game such as turkeys and raccoons. I am also quite positive it can be used to take larger game such as deer.

In my pack I also carry an Armalite AR-7.  It provides pin-point accuracy in an extremely small, lightweight package. Fully assembled and ready to shoot it is only 35" long, and weighs in at around 3 lbs. When broken down and stowed in the butt stock, it is 16.5"long and is easily stowed away in my backpack. The only complaint I had with this gun was with the sites. It is the civilian model of the AR-5 which was developed as a survival weapon for US Air Force pilots. As you might expect, it has military peep sites, which can be difficult to locate in heavy bush. to make this task easier, I painted the front post with fluorescent orange paint, it now stands out against any background, making it easy to develop a good sight picture.

On my Meat page, you will find information of making weapons such as spears. You will also find information of various types of snares and deadfalls. While these are often thought of in terms of hunting, they can also be used as passive security measures. If you scale up a dead fall, or similar kill trap, they can protect you from carnivores.

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Wilderness Security

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Revised: 07/17/16 Living Afield