There are some interesting discussions going on in the forums for those that don’t frequent them. One which I will expand on here is on caching.
Caching falls into three camps.
- Simple Storage
- Hiding of Stores
- Prepositioning of Stores on a route to a BOL
I see simple storage as being like keeping your stores in your home, warehouse or BOL. We will ignore that for this article.
I personally am not currently looking at prepositioning any stores so I’m only looking at caching as a way to hide my stores from the scavangers if they decide to come and raid my home.
I’ve looked at several ways to implement a cache. I looked at the tubes available but they were too small for my needs. I’ve looked at making my own and decided that was practical and would do but was not really what I wanted. I decided that what I wanted was to bury some wheely bins in the ground and use as caches. Others have chosen septic tanks, water tanks or built underground rooms.
I didn’t want to do too many or smaller caches in case they were detected and then someone decided to dig up the area. I wanted some simply for emergency use where I could dig up the caches as required and move its entire contents to somewhere safer.
To do this I needed to be very careful what I put in each cache. I only want to dig them up one at a time and not have to expend too much energy when it may be an issue. I want to sneak out, dig the cache up, unpack and move to store, backfill and cover.
If I was looking at prepositioning my caches I would have a major issue deciding on the location. Prepositioning requires the stores are hidden as well. Remote locations on your BOR means that you will have to dig up a remote area, bury some very important stores and then return home and leave them unattended with no obvious markers and no obvious security. As you will be intending to retrieve these and use them to get to your BOL you need to be very confident that you can retrieve them and that the loss of any will not be catastrophic to your plans. Unlike the US there is not vast tracts of land that you can bury things on. In the UK there are very few areas that don’t see people and you are not going into the wilderness but travelling to a destination.
In each instance you not only need to be careful what you put in each cache you also need to schedule to stores so that you ideally are digging up the next cache just before you run out of items. A trade off is required just in case there are missing caches and several losses may require some contingency work such as staying put and trapping.
At the very worse though you have to consider that all your caches will be compromised. It will mean going back to basics and thus you should always have in your BOB the equipment you need to survive without your caches. May be difficult but it can be done.
You need to plan very careful what you put in each cache. Each one should be stand alone and not require any other cache. Each cache should contain the basics such as food, water and medical equipment and depending on space additional items to help you such as batteries, solar equipment etc. For example I can put in each cache a months worth of emergency food, a months water, batteries for equipment, some candles, some medical kit, spare glasses and some fuel for the stove. Perhaps some hooks, snares, etc. just in case mine are lost. I put in enough to allow some slack.
The caches may be serving too different needs but they are pretty much the same. One is to hide food so that it is secure, the other is to put food on a route so you don’t have to carry it all the way and save your energy.
Finally, when you get to your BOL you should also have several caches there. Don’t leave them in your BOL as you may find visitors have been there before. They could even be there now so you need to have considered that.
Planning caches on a route to a BOL is going to depend on many factors. How many of you there is, where you are going and the routes available. You should not be thinking of travelling alone a road but instead thinking of having several routes between caches and also routes bypassing caches just in case. Once things settle down you can always consider coming back for them.
People see caches as being easy. They are not, they need considerable planning and tailoring your your specific needs. It’s not just throwing things in a box. It is prepping in miniature.