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I lived through the weekend challenge

Well, I finished the challenge last night in time for a nice shower and a bacon sandwich. To be honest I was a bit disappointed with it, not the bacon sandwich, as I found it easy enough to do. Too easy in fact. The biggest issue I had was I was unable to write any articles or work on anything for this site and I’m already way behind on the work I want to do.

Basically, I started at 20:30 on Friday and lived on bottled water, food stores from tins which I basically made up as sandwiches and fruit from the garden. With no treats at all as a target. I didn’t use hot water until Sunday at 14:00 when I had two cups of tea while I was visiting someone at their home. Smacked wrist for me. As far as the toilet went I used the portable loo I had without any issues at all. I finished at 20:30 on Sunday so I could read my email and catch up ready for going to work the next day.

The days were spent doing work in the garden sorting out things that should have been done ages ago. Reading a book, thinking about the forum and writing a design spec for a biological database. Off to bed when it was dark and up at normal time when it was light. Pretty boring really.

I’m going to suggest that you only do this test if you have never performed a test before or if you have never camped out. It only really tests the basics and two or three days is easily survivable if you didn’t even have any food at all. I’ll modify the process to suggest that you do this test after you have decided to start preparing and have bought the basics just to get you in the mindset. I think we should do graduated tests starting with this one and moving up as we progress.

I think we need a badge for this. I lived through the Survival UK weekend challenge. Anyone any good at graphics?

12 comments to I lived through the weekend challenge

  • tinkertytonk

    Good to see you made it through. I will be undertaking this challenge next weekend. Friday night 22.00 to Monday 06.00 so will let you know how it goes. Nice one to get us started.

  • Ronnie

    How did you bake your bread for the sandwiches?

  • half

    Couple of ways to bake bread Ronnie, one is using a dutch oven and charcoal on top and bottom. Another way is to line a cardboard box with foil and make a wire shelf, put in 3 or 4 lumps of charcoal.

  • Ronnie

    Without using a conventional oven, I’ve never been able to get it good enough to make sandwiches – tend to end up with a loaf that is either dense and half risen, has a really hard crust, or with large bubbles/gaps in it. Still tastes nice, but not suitable for sandwiches.

    half, which of these methods do you recommend? Will have to practice this!

  • half

    It might be best to go with flat breads Ronnie, for normal loaves I prefer the dutch oven but not every one has one. The cardboard box lined with foil works but takes a little experimenting in getting the right number of charcoals to work.

  • Skean Dhude

    Tinkertytonk,

    Thanks for that. Hope it goes as easy for you.

    Ronnie,

    That was the problem with 2 days. I had enough bread the same as I did for the fillings for 2 days. Perhaps we should put a few more rules in place on this one to make it harder.

    Half,

    I think I will try one of those next time. Bit more of a challenge.

  • maddog

    i would like my badge i did this as well and i had a mixed time
    i had enough food to last easily i had plenty of water i was warm enough
    my gas stove broke on sat evening so i need a new one went cold drinks cold food and washing for the last day cold beans on corned beef is not great
    i am going to have to consider what i do with tiolet waste that was the main issue im going to look at a composting tiolet and get one going
    i was expecting it to be easy as i dont eat or drink that much anyway and am busy most of the time but going to bed early was a chore as i could not work or read under the lamps i have i need new lamps as well
    i thought it was worthwhile as it made me realise that putting tools away for later use is not the best way you need to make sure they do what you need them to do
    ill be better prepared for the next one

  • tinkertytonk

    Its great that things went wrong; that way when the SHTF you will have all you need & it will work. I start my weekend test tonight at 22.00 until Monday 06.00 and going to see how it goes.

    On, another note; it threw it down a day last week for 24 hours. I went out in my poncho in a wood for four hours to test it out. I sat in a hollow with the rain pouring down on me but the wood/hollow protecvted me from the wing (indeed it was all very therapeutic). I learnt that my poncho is not waterproof & I need a new one.

    These tests were invaluable and can end up saving your life.

    I will post details of my home challenge on the website this afternoon and then let you all know how it goes.

    ITS GOOD IF IT GOES WRONG!!!!!!!!

  • Skean Dhude

    Maddog,

    I do see more of a use for this test by preppers where the basics are untested. You need to get the basics tested out before you move to the harder stuff and build up. I agree toilet waste is very important. It is the biggest issue in my house and I’m looking at a composting toilet too. I had the same problem with the lights and in my case it is because I don’t use low lighting for bedtime reading but have the full lights on. I didn’t try and stay up late in my test but got up earlier instead. I’m going to check all my lights for output in the field so to speak and not just turn them on to check.

    I’m glad you learnt from the experience your badge is in the post.

    Tinkertytonk,

    You do learn more when it goes wrong but let us try to minimise that by learning from others experiences via sites like this.

    I usually test my stuff by going into the woods on hunting trips which makesme think many things are untested. I’ve promised the baby that in the summer we will go camping, in the back garden, and that will give a little test but I should really plan for a winter test. I’m going to think of a series of these tests and put them up as tests. You have started something now.

    Good luck with your challenge and I hope it doesn’t go too wrong.

  • tinkertytonk

    I survived my ‘home survival weekend,

    Some points that may be of interest to you:

    (1) A full smelly toilet was an issue and I will take steps to have some very good camping gel on hand to keep the toilet healthy and smell free (and for longer term some very thick plastic bags!!!!!!
    (2) I used peanuts as my main souse of fats/carbohydrates from by bug out food supply. Problem that could be encountered by a penut passed food supply (which my six months bug out supplies are) is constipation……….not an issue initially on the challenge but today I’m bunged up like a kipper so I need to include in my survival foods more roughage 🙂 I found the peanuts filled me up very quickly and had loads of energy.
    (3) I also tested some survival packs http://www.wellingtonsurplus.com.au/showProduct/CAMPING+-+TRAVEL/SURVIVAL+KITS/SS1027/Seven+Oceans+Survival+Rations that I have got for emergencies. I found out they are not very tasty and have a awful texture when eating them (they dissolve into a paste in the mouth very quickly; I suppose so you can eat without loads of water) but do fill you up. I will be getting some more as they have a five year shelf life. I also learnt they would be mentally very difficult to live on day after day.
    (4) I used an old submariners tip for cleaning/washing. I used an alcohol based baby wipe each morning to just clean my armpits, belly button, groin & bottom. It kept the smells away (its been very hot here) and uses no water so a good system. In the long term I think it would be great at remaining clean without bad smells.
    (5) It was fun 🙂

    Hope this overview will help other people when they undertake their ‘home weekend challenges’.

    Yours; Tinkertytonk

    Hope

  • maddog

    the alcohol wipes dry up real quick when opened and are not long lasting even when sealed. I used a small portion of soap and water in a basin and then threw it into the garden simple and effective

    toilets seems to be the big issue time for an article

  • Skean Dhude

    Tinkertytonk,

    Nice report.

    1) As pointed out we all seem to have the same toilet issues. I will do my article on composting toilets sooner rather than later. This will help and no bags required.

    2) Mmmm. Sticking to any one food only for any period leads to trouble. If you are like this after 2 days what will you be like after 6 months? Althought nuts are a good food store and should be PART of your supplies.

    3) I’m not a fan of these sorts of meals as they are expensive and tasteless. In saying that they have their place in our toolkit which is for emergency use. They could be part, but not a major part, of our supplies if you can afford them. I have a couple myself. I don’t agree with them being mentally difficult to eat. You would have to be mental if you didn’t eat them and starved to death no matter how many there were.

    4) In with Maddog here. I do love the ease of use of these but they dry out very quickly unless well kept. I also used the water and basin and it worked fine. The wet wipes are perfect though for when you are away for a few days camping which is more what this test is like.

    5) Glad you enjoyed it. I found it tiring although relaxing if that makes sense.

    A badge for you as well.

    Maddog,

    I think you are right. Not finished writing it yet though.

    5)

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