Long-Term Survival Supplies

Preparing for the aftermath of a major disaster by stocking your cellar or survival retreat with long-term survival supplies is meant to provide self-sufficiency for at least one year, if not longer. Considering what to put away for one of those “the-end-of- the-world-as-we-know-it” (TEOTWAWKI) scenarios requires planning, budgeting and performing detailed calculations concerning how much each person can consume daily without causing emergency food shortages.

Possible calamities requiring the use of long-term survival supplies mostly involve global disasters such as detonation of nuclear devices, uncontrollable pandemics, collision with a meteor or asteroid or sun instability causing electromagnetic forces to create climatic chaos on Earth.

If any of these were to occur, the chances of governmental control over the situation are slim; a state of anarchy would no doubt exist in a world where power is disrupted, food supplies rapidly dwindle and clean drinking water is inaccessible. Those who had prepared for such brutal conditions would be the only ones capable of surviving in a world gone wild.

Comprehensive List of Must-Have Supplies

Water Supplies

  • Water purifiers and filters
  • Plastic water containers
  • Bottled water
  • Water barrels
  • Battery- or hand-operated water pumps
  • Siphons (for water as well as fuel)
  • PVC pipe and connectors
  • Water hoses

Sanitation Supplies

  • Portable toilets
  • Toilet paper
  • Toilet clothes
  • Washtubs/washboards
  • Mop buckets with wringers (for laundry purposes)
  • Plain bleach (four to six percent sodium hypochlorite)
  • Vinegar to use as fabric softener
  • Laundry detergent
  • Antibacterial hand soaps
  • Cleaning products (Pine-Sol, ammonia)
  • Clothesline and clothespins

Heat/Cooking and Energy Supplies

  • Generators
  • Solar panels
  • Windmill generators
  • Gasoline containers
  • Sta-Bil, Pri-G or Pri-D (fuel storage gas additive)
  • Mini-heater head that screws onto propane cylinder
  • Seasoned firewood
  • Cookstove
  • Charcoal, propane, gasoline and kerosene
  • Lighter fluid/strike-anywhere matches

Gardening and Food Production Supplies

  • Heirloom or non-hybrid seeds
  • Garden tools (hoses, hoes, rakes)
  • Small farm animals to sustain you through a long-term survival situation (chickens, goats, rabbits, sheep)
  • Fencing
  • Chicken wire
  • Animal feed in bulk containers
  • Salt licks
  • Cheese-making supplies (rennet)
  • Beer- and/or wine-making still and supplies
  • Supplies to make syrup
  • Hand-pushed lawn mower

Kitchen and Food Prep Supplies

  • Manual can openers
  • Hand-operated mixer and whisk
  • Heavy-duty cookware (cast-iron skillets and pans suitable for open fire or cookstove)
  • Canning supplies (large water-bath kettle and pressure canner device)
  • Reusable, airtight plastic food containers
  • Heavy-duty aluminum foil
  • Stainless steel mixing bowls
  • Hand-operated meat slicer
  • Manual meat grinders and grain grinders
  • Knives with sharpeners (butcher knives, fish filleters and bone saws)

Health Long-Term Survival Supplies

  • Supply of prescriptions, as large quantity as possible
  • Knowledge about natural alternatives to synthetic medications
  • First aid kits
  • Over-the-counter pain, flu and cold medications, including ibuprofen and antihistamines
  • Vitamin supplements
  • Hydrogen peroxide, iodine, witch hazel and rubbing alcohol
  • Baby supplies (formula, diapers, wipes, ointments, infant Tylenol)
  • Bar and liquid soap, waterless cleaners
  • Shampoo, toothpaste, toothbrushes, mouthwash and floss
  • Feminine hygiene supplies, including reuseable pads, tampons and flow cups
  • Nail-clippers and hair-cutting scissors
  • Paper towels, toilet paper and reusable cloth handkerchiefs
  • Extra pair of eyeglasses, eye drops, sunglasses and ophthalmologic ointment

Camping Supplies

  • Insulated ice chests
  • Flashlights, light sticks, lanterns, torches, solar-powered yard lights
  • Two-man saws and bow saws
  • Hatchets, wedges, axes and mauls
  • Insect repellent creams and sprays (peppermint oil for bees and citronella oil for mosquitoes)
  • Fishing gear
  • Hunting knives with appropriate sharpening devices
  • Duffle bags, backpacks, folding luggage carriers
  • Sleeping bags, pillows, blankets, mosquito netting
  • Cookware, aluminum pie tins to use as plates, eating utensils, food preparation utensils
  • Rain gear, rubber boots, plastic ponchos
  • Inflatable mattresses and cots
  • Tarps
  • Stakes, nails, spikes, twine and rope
  • Campfire pot-hanger, tripod and lantern hangers
  • Caps, hats, bandanas and scarves
  • Oil lamps and lanterns
  • Cans of fuel
  • Aladdin lamp, including fuel and mantles

Supplies for Hunting and Defense

  • Various firearms—rifles, shotguns, handguns
  • Plenty of ammunition
  • Pepper spray, archery supplies, air guns, slingshots, spears, bats, etc.

Transportation Supplies

  • Bicycles (oil, tires, pumps)
  • Wagons
  • Wheeled carts
  • Compass and maps showing elevation and other topographical information
  • Necessary tools to maintain functioning of transportation devices

Miscellaneous Long-Term Survival Supplies

  • Rechargeable and solar-powered batteries
  • Waterproof, strike-anywhere matches (make sure you have literally thousands of these matches)
  • Long-burning candles
  • Garbage cans and garbage bags
  • Large plastic storage bins
  • Plenty of duct tape
  • Fire extinguishers
  • Battery-powered carbon monoxide alarm
  • Pest killers, such as d-Con rat poison, borax roach powder, ant traps and mousetraps
  • Plastic for window insulation
  • Lumber
  • Screen patching
  • Nails, screws, glue, staple gun, paraffin wax and assorted nuts and bolts

Tools Included in Long-Term Survival Supplies

  • All sizes of hammers, flat-head and Phillips-head screwdrivers, pliers, wrenches
  • Chain saws, extra chains, gas and oil
  • Wood axes, saws, splitters
  • Auto tool kit
  • Bolt cutters, crow bars, jacks, tow chains, wire and winches
  • Of course, nails, screws, bolts, nuts, hinges, latches and a wide variety of fastners and hardware.
  • You can never have enough: duct tape, plumbers tape, baling wire and string or rope.

Build a Library

Start collecting reading material that explains how to hunt, garden, make homemade soap and candles, repair things, can and preserve food, apply first-aid treatment and raise animals for survival. Have supplies of paper, pencils and solar-powered calculators to homeschool children who will no longer be able to attend public school following a global crisis.


Additionally, purchase clothing that is appropriate for your region of the country. For example, southerners will need to stock up on lighter clothing, in contrast to those who live in the northern U.S. Midwesterners and those who live in the mid-Atlantic region should start collecting clothing for both cold and warm climates.

However…even if you live in the South, you would be wise to have some cold-weather clothes. In the event of a nuclear war, a polar shift, asteroid strike or mega-volcano, you could suddenly find yourself facing nuclear winter or other major climate change.

Sources of Long Term Survival Supplies

Affordably stocking your retreat or cellar with supplies is accomplished by practicing some of these thrifty tips:

  • Always buy in bulk—Costco, Sam’s Club and other wholesale club stores sell items in bulk.
  • Purchase items at dollar stores or other discount stores.
  • Use coupons whenever possible.
  • Go to rummage sales, garage sales, estate sales and auctions.
  • Search for supplies on Ebay, Freecycle or Craigslist websites.
  • Always keep an eye out for items sitting next to dumpsters—someone else's trash may very well be perfectly usable.

Investing in long-term survival supplies represents an ongoing and complex task that enhances your knowledge of true self-sufficiency while providing for your future existence and that of your loved ones during a time of calamitous and dangerous global events.

Of course, any type of stocking up of supplies is going to require storage. So when formulating your plan for long-term survival supplies don’t forget to plan storage options.

  Real Survival Skills © 2012