Doomsday Preppers: Jeff Bushaw

Up next is another Pacific Northwester, Jeff Bushaw. His single-issue is the Yellowstone supervolcano…but he lives West by several hundred miles. I think Jason Charles (living in NYC) last season had more to worry about ash fallout than Jeff does.

So, Jeff preps on a budget. His source for survival-y goods? Storage unit auctions! I think I smell a new crossover series: Doomsday Budget Prepper Storage Unit Auction Wars? TV producers, take note!

He and his teenage son use these auctions as quality bonding time, which is good. At the auction shown, they win a unit for $500, which gets them an interesting collection of someone else’s junk. It’s not a total bust, because this haul includes a modern inline muzzleloading rifle. Springboard time!
Maybe I was spoiled by growing up with a da who makes beautiful flintlocks, but oh, inlines, what  a disgrace to the good name of muzzleloaders you are! When I teach my History of Muzzleloaders, my coverage of inlines is limited to “They exist; ask someone else.”, and that’s it.

From a self-reliance standpoint, you start going downhill once you introduce percussion caps onto the scene—because how many people can make fulminated mercury primers in their backyard? I have a living history buddy who says that if the Almighty meant for us to shoot percussion-locks, he’d have left little copper caps scattered about. Feeding a flintlock, on the other hand, requires only five stable, naturally-occurring ingredients (flint, charcoal, sulphur, saltpeter, and lead), and three of those can be combined into blackpowder relatively easily.

Because I like to think in terms of long-term, major-social-shakeup disasters, I always have to lean towards tools with the capacity for sustainability and self-reliance, which in the case of hunting means flintlocks and traditional archery.

Back to Jeff.

Since in this scenario, he’s worried about volcanic ash from 600 miles east, he’s taking pilot lessons so he can bug out to an airport and fly south to outrun ash. Remember that unpronounceable Icelandic volcano a few years back that grounded European air traffic for like, a week?

If Ragnarok doesn't look something like this, I'll be very disappointed.

If Ragnarok doesn’t look something like this, I’ll be very disappointed.

Now, imagine something like, let’s say conservatively ten times more violent. They say not to try outrunning something as small as a tornado, so I’m going to guess that outrunning a Yellowstone supervolcano is totally out of the question.

To simulate flying through volcanic ash (which might clog the plane), they stall out and land in a field. It’s edited to be all dramatic and stuff.

The experts tell them to think outside the Food Bucket and get some seeds and start growing. I agree.

They get 57 points, for six months’ time. In the update, Jeff tells us they’ve moved out of the burbs to a three-acre plot on the outskirts, where they have a barn for food storage, and a creek.


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