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Hello! Project Gridless is dedicated to off the grid living, foraging / hunting / gardening for food, traditional survival skills and modern tips for alternative energy. Please Follow, Subscribe or Like.

2020: The Year from Hell

What a horrible year 2020 has been.

However there is a silver lining of sorts, with respect to the off grid community: A lot of people suddenly became very interested in living off grid away from the rest of society.

Go figure.

Every year at the end of the year I look back at the site's popularity and try to learn something from it. What did I do right? What did I do wrong?

ProjectGridless.ca saw a huge surge in popularity this year, despite only 15 new blog posts (including this one you are reading). I was super busy this year and had lots of other writing projects on the go. I didn't really have much time to do blogging this year. Far too busy.

So how popular was ProjectGridless.ca during 2020?

105,000+ new visits.

For context I started this blog in April 2011 and during that time 414,000+ visits. 25.4% of all visits were just from 2020. The other 74.6% is from roughly 8.75 years of writing 365 blog posts, during which the average monthly views during many of those years were between 2000 to 3000.

The average monthly views for 2020 were 8750.

So we're talking about over 3 times more popular than regular years.

My blog isn't the only site benefiting from this sudden interest in living off grid either. I witnessed the same trend on Facebook, where I manage / administrate a Facebook group called: Off the Grid: Eastern Canada.

The Facebook group in question saw a huge bump in new members during 2020.

It went from 300 members in January 2020 to over 1800 by the end of December 2020. 1500 new members in less a year. Multiplied in size by a factor of six.

This was also the first year that I was contacted by a journalist regarding going Off Grid... What was the topic of interest? People wanting to leave the cities and go off grid because of COVID.

So that just shows how far reaching COVID has been in 2020. It altered home prices across the country, both in cities and in the countryside.

It changed how we think about economics, about health care, about our idiot politicians and their vacations...

But it was still the year from hell. COVID was just the biggest thing to happen this past year. There were also wild fires, massive explosions due to incompetence, terrorist attacks and more. Pick a subject and something terrible probably happened in 2020.

But on the plus side we now have vaccines and this problem will soon be solved.

There is only one hitch. The moronic anti-vaxxers who would rather drink water (in the form of bogus homeopathy cures) rather than accept a vaccine proven by science to be effective at protecting people from the virus.

In early December I did some calculations for Canada. Based at the current rate of spread in Canada almost everyone in the country would be exposed to the virus by September 2021. It would just multiply exponentially until eventually almost everyone has it or has had it, and the death toll would be catastrophic.

Getting the vaccine thus becomes imperative.

And the people who don't get vaccinated because they don't see the virus as being a serious threat will be the ones who end up getting it. Maybe they die. Maybe they don't. Maybe they survive and end up with permanent health problems because they refused to get vaccinated. Maybe they survive and don't have any permanent problems.

But whatever happens if just a percentage of anti-vaxxers die then they will serve as a reminder as to why people should be vaccinated in the first place.

And you will note that I don't believe in any bogus hoaxes that Bill Gates or aliens are trying to track people with tiny microchips in the vaccine. Utter nonsense. If any industry wanted to stick microchips in people they could just put them in McDonalds hamburgers, Starbucks coffee and various other foods.

Seriously people. Use your brains. You're already being tracked with your cellphone every second of the day. There is no need to track people using any other method.

Researching Vintage Bows = Research Fee

I was recently contacted by someone asking me to research their recently purchased vintage Browning recurve bow for them. Specifically they wanted to know what year it was made.

Right away I realized what they were asking would take hours of my time and I frankly do not have the time right now to be researching other people's stuff for them. I have my own stuff to do, a toddler, deadlines, work, a wife, a social life, and I don't have time to waste on researching other people's stuff unless I am being paid for it.

Due to time constraints I explained to the person that I would need to charge a research fee ($40 CDN) for my time and effort on this, and all I could really promise them is that it will be a date range (eg. "circa 1975" or circa 1973 to 1978). There is no guarantee I would be able to pinpoint the exact year it was made despite the hours of research required.

If paying someone a research fee for their time is objectionable to you then you can research it yourself and I wish you luck in your search.

Have a good day!

Charles Moffat


PS. There is a wonderful search engine called "Google". I recommend people try using it. Otherwise when you contact someone and you're asking them to research something for you then you should just immediately mention MONEY* and explain that you don't want to waste their time and are happy to reward them for their time.

* Payment in advance. I am not running a charity.

Off Grid Lifestyle Growing in Popularity due to COVID

I got contacted yesterday by a CBC reporter from Halifax wanting to know if a Facebook group that I administer is more popular now due to COVID. The Facebook group in question is:

Off the Grid: Eastern Canada, and it is specifically a group for people living in Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, PEI, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador.

I told the reporter YES, and here's why: The number of members in the group have soared in recent months. According to notes I made on the group page:

  • We had 300 members back on January 13th 2020 (pre-COVID).
  • We broke 700 members on August 14th.
  • Broke 1000 members on October 24th.
  • As of 10 AM today we have 1372 members, which includes 115 new members just in the last week.
So that is definitely way up. At the current rate of soaring new members I expect the Facebook group to break 2000 members sometime in January, so that will be an increase of 1700 members in a space of 1 year.

If I look at my blog, Project Gridless, there has also been a recent meteoric rise in popularity during the past year.

 Roughly 98K of the 400K visitors from the last decade are just from 2020. In 2020 you see a sudden and steep rise in the blog's popularity, with a minor dip in the middle during Summer (which is normal during Summer as more people are outdoors).

The highs and lows are also affected by blog frequency (how often the blogger is making new blog posts). If I write 90 new blog posts in a single year obviously that year will get more attention than a year when I only make 20. However in 2020 I have only made 11 blog posts up until yesterday (with this post being 12), and my most recent post was back in August. I have simply been very busy doing other things this year and I have not been blogging as much, and yet the statistics have gone way up.

I should note however that my blog isn't just about off grid living, it is also about outdoor activities like fishing, archery, etc - activities that have also seen a boom during the same time period.

It is a shame I cannot do polls on here... It would be handy for measuring whether people are more interested in living off grid these days due to COVID.

But I can do polls on the Facebook group.

So if people want to join Off the Grid: Eastern Canada I will be posting a few polls on there today.

The Problem with Crossbows in Toronto

The biggest problem with crossbows in Toronto (and similar cities) is that there are no places where you can safely and legally shoot them outdoors.


Because there's no crossbow ranges.

Just like most cities don't have an archery range, most cities also don't have a dedicated crossbow range - either privately owned or publicly owned.

Toronto is fortunate that it does have an archery range, but crossbows are strictly not allowed at the Toronto Archery Range.

If you show up there with a crossbow then you will have angry archers calling the police on you. The police will show up and tell you to leave - and they might confiscate your crossbow and give you a $4000 fine.

See what I mean?

So the only safe places you can really shoot a crossbow is indoors - such as a basement or a garage.

Which means you are guaranteed to be limited in how far you can shoot with your crossbow as most people don't own a basement or a garage the size of a football field.

To find a private gun range or archery range that allows crossbows you have to go outside of the city limits. Such places do exist, but you may find yourself driving for 1 hour up to the Wolf's Den near Barrie, Ontario just to pay $10 CDN just to use the range. (Or buy annual membership for $150, but you really need to be visiting Wolf's Den at least 20 times per year for the annual membership to make sense.)

So yes...

There's no crossbow ranges in Toronto.

There's also no crossbow instructors in Toronto.

You cannot shoot crossbows outdoors (not legally) within the city limits.

And if you want to go somewhere that it is legal (and has a proper crossbow range) you're going to be spending roughly $10 per visit plus gasoline plus food expenses.

Speaking for myself...

  • I shoot in my garage.
  • I shoot up north when I visit family.

And otherwise I do regular archery, with recurve bows, longbows, compounds, etc. So if I want to shoot something I can still do regular archery as much as I want using the free archery range.

So this isn't really a problem for me because I know I get to scratch that itch - the urge to shoot something - regularly anyway. I don't need my crossbows or a crossbow range to have fun shooting at things.

Some people will also take their crossbow(s) with them when they go camping up north and then practice with them while on camping trips.

Some people have relatives who own a farm or a cabin up north and they work out a deal where they can visit regularly to practice with their crossbow.

Some people go just outside the Toronto city limits and find a field or forest where they can practice legally, in which case they should ask the permission of the land owner to be trespassing on their property. (You should ideally get their permission in writing and there should be a time limit of when you're allowed to be on their land. Sometimes an exchange of $$ is required.)


Some people who are desperate to shoot somewhere within the city limits have been known to just find a stretch of abandoned railway tracks and practice there, but they run the risks of people noticing and calling the police. But some people do this and presumably some of them are very careful and haven't been caught yet. This is not a suggestion. I am just pointing out that some people do this. Some of them presumably get caught.



My advice - my suggestion - is that if you really want to shoot at things within the city limits then you should just buy some archery equipment - or get archery lessons - and then just shoot at the Toronto Archery Range. That way you're doing it legally, you don't to travel really far, and archery is a lot of fun. This way you won't have to worry about the legal stuff that comes with being a crossbow enthusiast.

And you can still shoot your crossbow in your garage or basement or when traveling outside the city limits.

Honestly, all the extra legal baggage and a lack of places to shoot crossbows legally in Toronto means you are simply better off not owning a crossbow. It is unfortunately the situation you are living with if you live in a city like Toronto and enjoy shooting them.

Compound Bow Teardrops, 3D Printer Plastic?



Hi There
I just read your post on replacement ideas for compound bow teardrops. Did you ever do a follow-up to this please?
Its something I have been thinking about myself as a project and would love to hear if you have further thoughts.

Alex M.


My Response

I have not followed up on that... But I have given thought to using a 3D printer to make new teardrops using an extra durable plastic. It would then need to be tested to determine what poundage the plastic teardrops can safely withstand.

If anyone else manages to make 3D printed teardrops in the future and conducts tests on their durability I would love to hear about their results.

Project Gridless YouTube Channel Tops 100 Subscribers

The Project Gridless YouTube Channel recently surpassed 100 subscribers.


Below is our most popular video in which Gary from Basically Bows Archery shows how to build a traditional wooden arrow. The young woman in the video is one of my archery students from years ago.

Gary liked the video so much he used it on his website and later decided to build his own YouTube channel... His channel currently has a whopping 34,900+ subscribers. See Gary Chynne for more details.

Canadian Tire Archery Equipment / Solar Panels

Okay, so here is the thing.

Canadian Tire does sell a variety of archery equipment, but what they have available varies a lot in terms of quality and supply. Most of the time the equipment you are looking for isn't even in the store, and you can only order it online via:


However there is a further complication.

Recently due to COVID and increased demand on Canadian Tire's online sales they sometimes suspend online sales completely, which means you have to go to the store in person just to order what you are looking for.

At which point sales staff at the help desk are somewhat annoyed that you are bothering them in the first place and are wondering "Why don't you just order it online?"

At which point you have to explain: "The Canadian Tire website says online sales are suspended due to too much demand, and it says we should go to the store."

So there you are... At the store, trying to order something from online, which should have just been available online in the first place. Or even better, it should have been available in the store in the first place.

If you've ever tried to buy certain things at Canadian Tire you may have noticed a discrepancy. Certain items that are available in the online store can never be found in the physical stores. You can ONLY order them online for delivery / pick up at the store.


Which is really annoying.

What if you have questions about installation. There is literally no staff in the store who know anything about installing solar panels.

What they really need is:

1. A display aisle dedicated just to solar panels.

2. A sales person behind a desk in the aisle who is available to answer questions regarding both solar panel and wind turbines. They can also answer questions about battery power and power inverters.

Honestly, why would any beginners wishing to install solar panels bother to go via Canadian Tire for buying the gear? The only source of help is the website. They don't even sell an installation guidebook or anything like that, beyond any documents that come with the individual parts you are buying. So you really have to do all the research yourself and there is no guidance.

How to Make an Inexpensive Children's Bow and Arrows



Do you know where I can find an archery range near Toronto that rents archery equipment suitable for a 5 year old? I am trying to find a place that rents equipment so my 5 year old son can learn archery.

- Lisa T."


Now there is a challenging problem.

The problem is there is no archery ranges that rent archery equipment. Let alone equipment that is suitable for a 5 year old. It is generally accepted that most archers have their own equipment.

The Toronto Archery Range has no age limit, but anyone under the age of 16 must be supervised by a parent/guardian at all times, so that is certainly an option. However it is a free public archery range and it doesn't rent equipment.

There are private ranges outside of Toronto which may allow archers that age, but they will certainly have similar restrictions with respect to supervision and they are not free. Expect to be paying $10 per hour just to use private ranges, and that doesn't include the cost of renting equipment.

There is a 3rd party company that rents sports equipment (+ a damage deposit), but it is a bit of a racket because beginners are much more likely to lose arrows / damage equipment so they are really expecting you to end up damaging equipment and losing part of your damage deposit. Also I wouldn't recommend their smallest youth bow for a 5 year old because it is really designed for a 10 to 14 year old.


There are some archery instructors like myself who provide equipment during archery lessons, but such lessons are more for people who are very serious about learning archery and are certainly more expensive. Maybe put a pin in that idea and come back when your son is older / more serious about the sport.

Canadian Tire, Bass Pro and similar stores sell youth archery equipment which is reasonably priced.


There is a $69 bow on Canadian Tire for example that would be suitable for your son.


You would also need to buy about 6 arrows and a shooting glove or shooting tab, so overall you might be spending closer to $150+ on equipment, but at least the equipment is reusable and you can always sell it all later on Craigslist if your son ever loses interest in the sport.

Lastly I suppose you could just make your own equipment.
  1. Just buy wood dowels from Canadian Tire, 5/16th dowels is a good size for making arrows.
  2. Cut the dowels to an appropriate length for your son's draw length (24 to 28 inches is probably more than enough), notch the ends to make nocks for the arrows.
  3. Adding feather fletching to the arrows is optional and unnecessary since this is just for a youth bow, but as you get better at making arrows over time you can practice fletching arrows in order to improve accuracy over longer distances.
  4. Find a piece of oak or similar hardwood that is 4-5 feet long and tiller it into a bow. There are plenty of youtube videos on the subject of tillering a bow evenly if you need help.
  5. Paracord makes a decent bowstring for a cheap selfbow.
  6. Your first bow will probably suck horribly, but it will still shoot. Don't worry about it. As your son gets older you can make more bows together and you will get better at it.
  7. If you have some scrap leather you could make a shooting tab. Cut the following shape out of the leather. It doesn't need to be perfect, but you will need to size it fit your son's hand.
  8. Encourage your son to use the shooting tab whenever shooting so he doesn't hurt his fingers. Some archers suffer nerve damage to their fingers by shooting without protection.

Alternatively you could buy the bow I mentioned from Canadian Tire and then make the wooden arrows and shooting tab yourself. If your son likes making things this is something fun you could do together.

There are also archery themed summer camps in the GTA / Ontario, but I believe they are all currently closed due to COVID. That is something to consider in future years when COVID is behind us.


Likewise Beaver Scouts and Boy Scouts sometimes do archery, but again COVID.


Best of luck! Happy shooting!

Why you should be concerned about nuclear radiation in your food.

Doug Ford.

The name brings fear to the minds of many people in Ontario.

Doug Ford is the Premier of Ontario, and he is a jerk. A real nasty jerk. He wants to dump nuclear waste in Bruce County, close to the town of Teeswater. The Teeswater River (and the underground aquifer beneath the region) supplies the drinking water to:

  • Tens of thousands of people.
  • Dairy cows.
  • Water for agricultural farming (corn, potatoes, soy beans and more).
  • Water for Aquafina bottled water.
  • Cattle, pigs, turkeys and chickens. Bruce County is the Beef Capital of North America, but it also produces a lot of other meat products.

If you live Ontario you've eaten food many times from Bruce County. Guaranteed. You've drank the milk. You've eaten the cheese. You've eaten beef, pork, turkey and chicken. You've eaten the corn, the potatoes, the soy products. You've drank Aquafina water.

Even if you are a vegan and don't eat milk and dairy, you should still care where your soy products and other vegetables are grown and where your bottled water comes from.

And that is why you should care.

If you care about what you eat, then you should protect what you eat. Learn more at:


If you care write to Doug Ford. Tweet him. Phone him and leave an angry voicemail.

Share this post. Copy/paste it to other websites. Share it on Facebook. Share it on Twitter. Share the memes below.

Show that you care about your food and where it comes from.

Protect your food and your health from Doug Ford.

Coronavirus Stats and Why You Should Worry

Below are the Global Coronavirus Stats, starting on March 17th until April 1st.

Known Cases

What you will see is that globally we went from less than 190,000 known cases on March 17th up to 912,000 by April 1st (as of 5:34 PM GMT). Up 480% during that time period.


The deaths during that same time period skyrocketed from 7,518 to 45,540. Up 605% during that time period.


During that time period recoveries went from 80,874 to 190,933. A moderate increase in recoveries, suggesting that the virus is either deadlier than we give it credit for, or that recoveries take longer than expected.

Unknown Cases

This is the problem. We don't know what percentage of the population has the coronavirus and is transmitting it to other people willy nilly. As such it becomes difficult to estimate just how common it is, and exactly how deadly it is.

Some Countries Getting Hit Harder

Certain countries like the USA, which has high rares of diabetes and other health problems, are more vulnerable than other countries.
  • USA Known Cases 205,036
  • USA Deaths 4,516
  • USA Recoveries 8745
  • USA Unresolved Cases 191,775
Stats as of April 1st, 2020 at 5:34 PM GMT.

Now what is important to look at is the number of people who have died or recovered, because those are "Resolved Cases". They either died or recovered. It is purely binary. All other cases unresolved and those people could either die or recover.

The Coronavirus has killed 34% of the resolved cases in the USA.

If you want it in simpler terms, the virus eventually kills 1 in 3 known cases in the USA.

The USA currently has 191,775 unresolved cases. Based upon a death rate of 34% we can expect ‭65,203.5‬ of those unresolved cases to die.

And it could ultimately become worse than that if the USA runs into a shortage of ventilators which are critical for people to beat this particular pandemic.

Other Countries Fared Better

To their credit, China locked down parts of the country quickly to control the spread of the coronavirus.

Also China has relative low numbers of diabetes and other health problems, so their death rate is much lower.
  • China Known Cases 81,554
  • China Deaths 3312
  • China Recoveries 76,238
  • China Unresolved Cases 2004
Thus in China the virus is only killing 1 in 24 resolved cases or 4.16%.

That is a huge difference in terms of how much deadlier the coronavirus is in the USA vs China.

Canada also has a similarly low death rate, partially due to having a better healthcare system, but also because Canadians get more exercise and have lower rates of diabetes and other health problems.
  • Canada Known Cases 9,489
  • Canada Deaths 108
  • Canada Recoveries 1,445
  • Canada Unresolved Cases 7,936
Thus Canada's death rate is currently only about 1 in 14.4, or 7% of resolved cases. It isn't as low as China's death rate, but it is still way better than the USA.

What is the Global Death Rate?

Of ‭236,473‬ resolved cases, 45,540 people have died thus far.

So it is currently killing, on average, 1 in 5.2 people. 19.26% of known cases.


We can expect this to get a lot worse.

As the coronavirus spreads to poorer nations with poor health care systems we can expect the death rate to go up.

Even wealthy countries are going to run into shortages of ventilators, doctors/nurses who are healthy enough to treat the sick, and the materials those medical staff need.

Countries like China might even recover completely from this, having closed their borders and stomped down on the spread of the virus by using quarantines and martial law in effected regions. China has already lowered their number of cases to 2004. Two months from now they might have zero new infections and be able to resume normal life.

Countries like the USA, who have leaders who are unwilling or powerless to invoke quarantines and martial law, will see the coronavirus spread across their entire nation until no place is safe.

In the USA the coronavirus has already spread to every state and is multiplying within the USA at a rapid pace.

The USA currently has 205,036 known cases, but back on March 17th the USA had only 5266 known cases.

In 15 days the USA went from 5266 cases to over 205,000 known cases - and they presumably have many more cases because the USA has a shortage of tests.

So up by a factor of 40 in 15 days. A 4000% increase.

Earlier this morning the USA had only 188,000 cases, but in the last 5.5 hours the number of confirmed cases went up 17,000. So the number of confirmed cases is going up by more than 3000 per hour right now.

By April 16th the USA could be looking at 8.2 million people with the coronavirus, and most of them probably already have it right now and just don't know it yet because they haven't had any symptoms yet.

The Plateau

Eventually countries like the USA could reach a plateau, wherein the virus has spread to almost everyone, and infected almost everyone who is vulnerable to it.

In the USA, due to the older population and the number of people with diabetes/other health problems we can expect the virus to effect roughly 30 to 40% of the population.

As of TODAY, April 1st 2020, the USA's estimated population is 331,002,651.

30 to 40% of that would be 99.3 million to 132 million people.

The coronavirus/COVID19 should be expected to kill 34% of them.

Between ‭33,762,270 and ‭45,016,360 people. Roughly 10 to 15% of the American population.

Meanwhile Donald Trump, the glorious leader in the White House, has been saying that if the USA only has 100,000 deaths from the coronavirus that would be a good thing.

Yes, that would be a good thing.

100,000 is way better than 33 to 45 million.

Then on March 29th, 3 days ago, Trump said that Americans should expect 200,000 deaths.

We should expect him to reprise his estimates again and again, because he doesn't listen to mathematicians.

There is another (unreliable) source out there saying that 2.2 million Americans might die. But these are really low ball statistics that are people are putting out there because they don't want to frighten people and because they don't know how to do math properly.

Using faulty math is just going to make the problem worse. It creates a false sense of security that less people are going to die.

Faulty Math

What do I mean by faulty math?

Well, lets pretend you ignore the recoveries rate and only look at the total number of known cases and the deaths so far.

  • USA Known Cases 205,036
  • USA Deaths 4,516
Looking at that you might think the death rate in the USA is only about 2%, even though the USA has 191,775 unresolved cases.

Roughly 35% of Americans are vulnerable to COVID19.

35% of 331,002,651 Americans is ‭115,850,928. 2% of that is 2.3 million dead Americans, assuming that the pandemic eventually spreads everywhere.

And voila, that is how faulty math predicts a much lower death rate.

This is what happens when politicians and other people who don't know how statistics work try to do math. They use *unresolved cases* as part of their metric for determining how many people will die, when they should really be using resolved cases only.

As more and more Americans die or recover from the coronavirus we will get more accurate numbers of just how deadly the virus is. Some states within the USA might have much higher or lower numbers than the national average.

Eg. I expect Mississippi / West Virginia to have really high death rates, and Colorado / Hawaii to have comparative lower death rates. (Due to lower rates of diabetes, and the fact that states like Hawaii and Colorado are more isolated.)

The Global Death Rate

223 million.

That is how many people I expect to die from coronavirus during the next 9 months, by December 31st 2020.

How did I arrive at that number?

The global population is 7.8 billion people as of April 2020.

Approx. 30% of the population is vulnerable to coronavirus.

‭2,340,000,000‬ vulnerable people.

Of those people who are vulnerable, I expect 1 in 10.5 people to die. At least.

Result: ‭222,857,143.

Maybe more, maybe less. Most likely more.

We should also expect people to die from food shortages, medicine shortages, lack of safe access to doctors, increased crime/murders, increased suicide rates, and a host of other problems.

So Why Should You Worry About This
  • You could die.
  • You have family who will die.
  • You have friends who will die.
  • You have neighbours who will die.
  • Everyone is going to know multiple people who will die from this.
  • Doctors and nurses will die. Some already have died.
  • The global economy is going to go into the biggest recession since the Great Depression.
  • Worst Case Scenario: Economic Chaos / Social Anarchy.
 There was a source on an American news agency that was predicting that the USA will at some point start seeing over 1000 deaths per day during April.

And possibly 3000 deaths per day in May.

For comparison purposes the September 11th 2001 attacks only killed 2,977 people.

That is going to feel like a paltry number compared to the 33-45 million Americans I expect to die from the first wave of the coronavirus.

The Second Wave

Eventually when countries start lifting quarantines and orders to self isolate we will likely see a Second Wave of the virus.

At which point that country or countries will need to self isolate all over for months to contain the virus. The countries which lift the quarantines too early are the ones which are going to be hit the hardest by the second wave of the virus.

There is also another potential problem. If a virus spreads for a long enough time period, like influenza/the Common Cold does, it eventually mutates and evolves into different versions of the virus. If it does this then there is the potential it could evolve into a deadlier version of the virus.

So it is really important we stop the virus during the first wave and wipe it out completely, so we can prevent a second wave of the virus, and also to prevent an evolved version of the coronavirus from becoming the next big killer.

Tired of Being Indoors?

Maybe it is time to go camping.

You can finally build that off grid cabin you've been dreaming of.

You have time right now, so why not just go and do it? Isolate yourself in the woods, build a cabin to your heart's content, and keep yourself safe.

Crossbow Trigger Design

Take a close look at the rather simple trigger design on the crossbow above. I am thinking of making something similar for a new crossbow.

However I am also thinking I might make it a bit more complicated, so it can be a more modern trigger shape.

Survival Lilly on the Coronavirus

Okay, so if you are one of the many people who watch Survival Lilly on YouTube then you are probably familiar with the fact that she is taking the Coronavirus / COVID19 very seriously.

One to two months ago her videos were on topics like:

  • A new gadget for her recurve bow.
  • She got a new dog.
  • How to sharpen an old bow saw.
  • 5 types of survival shelters.
  • Her #2 knife design becoming available. (Two videos just on that topic.)
  • Her current bow setup.
  • How to make a fire the "primitive" way.
  • Firesteel vs magnesium bar vs lighter.

And then suddenly her videos shifted to an all new theme: Coronavirus Panic Time.

A video of her panic buying toilet paper and other items.

A video about why teenagers and the Austrian media should not be mocking people dressed up to protect themselves from the Coronavirus.

Plus videos on:

Immune System Boosters.
News reporting on people stealing disinfectants.
Survival gear for her dog.
Another video of her panic buying things at the store.
Coronavirus Updates.
Spending a night overnight at her buy out camp. X2.
Austrian Curfew imposed.
Storing water for emergencies.
Panic buying more stuff.

And getting her survival bug out camp ready.


Is Lilly Overreacting?

No, I don't think she is.

I think she is taking this topic seriously.

Did she really need that much toilet paper? Probably not. But whatever. Lots of people have been stocking up on toilet paper. My wife and I purchased toilet paper on SALE back in January before the current crisis hit North America, so we're set for a good amount of time anyway.

I also think there is plenty of young people out there who are not taking this seriously.

Possibly because those same young people don't understand what the worst case scenario of this virus is:

  • The virus could mutate and become deadlier, killing young people too.
  • The global economy could completely collapse. Resetting us back 200 years. Monetary wealth could become completely worthless.
  • Complete anarchy as society breaks down.

Governments globally are trying to prevent this from happening. Stopping the virus before it can potentially mutate and become deadlier is important. If we just let the virus run rampant it will eventually mutate into something deadlier.

It is in their own best interest (and ours) that the global economy doesn't collapse and society falls into anarchy.

Because as much as the sound of hunting, fishing and growing my own vegetables sounds like a grand adventure the vast majority of us would much prefer to keep our KFC, pubs, beer, and freezers full of frozen food that is ready to eat. To say nothing of toilet paper, air conditioning, and access to a healthcare system.

That grand adventure doesn't sound so good if it means mankind brings itself close to the brink of extinction.

So everyone should be doing their job to prepare and to stay safe.

And that includes idiot teenagers and centennials in their 20s. (Millennials are in their 30s. We need to stop using the term millennials to describe young people.)

Take the coronavirus seriously. Stay Safe!

Pandemic Worst Case Scenario: Going Off Grid

Even if the Coronavirus / COVID19 virus was here to stay (perpetually killing off elderly people) I don't think this would lead to a breakdown of civilization.

Hypothetically what it would mean is that people over the age of 50 would retire earlier (retire at 50 instead of 65) and then move to a place where they are more isolated from the virus. Living out the rest of their lives off grid on a farm, in a cabin up north, in a desert, on a fishing boat, etc.

Would lots of elderly people die from the coronavirus? Yes, unfortunately that would be the case.

What I foresee happening however, if this worst case scenario becomes a reality, that it would cause a major shift in real estate and the off grid community.

People over the age of 50 would retire early, move to the countryside and isolate themselves from the rest of society so they don't get the coronavirus and die.

People under the age of 50 would continue to work and live productive lives, up until the point where they need to retire.

This hypothetical worst case scenario assumes that it is impossible to create a vaccine for the virus and the pandemic reaches every corner of the planet, killing roughly 233 million people globally in the first wave of the virus.

The problem afterwards is if there is no vaccine, and a person can contract COVID19 multiple times (or worse, it mutates in the future), then the virus continues to spread unabated and young people need to work in order to survive, and consequently many elderly die due to the first, second and continuing waves of the virus spreading.

Many people might also assume that because they got the virus when they were younger that they are now somehow immune to it, but when they get older they would discover they can still get it and die.

The long term effect therefore could be the isolation of the elderly, early retirements, and people buying up off grid land so they can avoid the general population.

Some people might try to live communally, but that would be inherently risky because all it takes is one person to become exposed to the virus and then 10 people get sick. Then 100. Then the whole commune. The coronavirus spreads exponentially and while the incubation period is long, the amount of time a person is contagious without realizing it is what makes this virus so good at spreading.

Speaking for myself I am currently 41. Retiring at the age of 50 means I could be going Off Grid during the next decade if such a worst case scenario turned out to be a reality.

Fortunately this might not be the case. It may take two or more years, but we may see a vaccine. There are many companies already working on potential vaccines, but it is the testing period that takes a long time because they have to make sure the vaccine is safe.

(I think they should be asking for human volunteers to test the vaccine on front line health care workers. The type of people who need the vaccine most as they are working with people infected and can also infect others unless they are vaccinated.)

In the meantime people need to be washing their hands and avoiding contact with other people / objects which other people frequently touch. This is our new way of life until further notice.

Worried about the Coronavirus Pandemic?

Are you worried about Coronavirus?

Well you should be, but not because of the health hazards. The virus typically only kills people over the age of 50, and even then only kills roughly one in ten people over the age of 50.

The bigger issue seems to be the economy which has currently gone into a tailspin nose dive.

Eg. In the past 26 days the Dow Jones has fallen from 29,551 to 23,581. A drop of over 20% in less than 1 month. Other markets are also similarly effected.

If the economy also continues to head in this direction and the virus becomes a widespread pandemic we will see global economic chaos.

In which case there are some things you should probably do to prepare.

#1. Double Check your Bug Out Bag

Now is a good time to double check your Bug Out Bag. If the economy collapses, wars break out or other problems that cause a societal collapse now is a really good time to make sure your Bug Out Bag is full of everything you need to escape from the rest of society and go off grid completely.

See my older post on Filling Your Bug Out Bag.

If you don't have a Bug Out Bag maybe it is time you finally prepared one?

You will also want a tent, transportation, a plan for getting out of the city (eg. a route and possibly backup routes), and a heading so you know where you are going. Eg. I know a swamp where the deer and wild turkeys are plentiful. Plus it is a swamp, so privacy should be assured.

#2. Self Defense and Hunting

"Speak softly and carry a big stick." - Theodore Roosevelt.

You should have multiple options for self-defense in the event you need to leave the big city and head to the countryside to wait out the chaos. The preppers have the advantage here, many of them have been ready for this sort of thing for years. Still you should definitely invest in something to protect yourself.

Having more than 1 weapon or skill to potentially protect yourself is beneficial, as certain weapons/skills are more suitable for certain situations.

For example:

  • Archery is quieter and stealthier than rifles.
  • Arrows can be reused, but bullets are one time (the shells can be recycled however).
  • Black powder rifles are less likely to run out of ammo because it is easier to make your own.
  • Martial arts is more portable than swords.
  • Axes and knives are both tools you will end up needing in the wild and to protect yourself.
  • Your best defense is to stay hidden. Nobody can threaten someone who cannot be seen.

Archery has an advantage as it is both quieter and can be used for both bowhunting and defense, but an archer is unlikely to run out of ammo as they can easily make more arrows once they know how.

The real trick to archery is that a person really needs lessons to get good at it. In the video below for example a new archery student hits a target ball at a distance of 37 yards/111 feet, and she manages to do it on her first lesson.

An amateur trying to teach themselves archery would struggle to hit a similar sized target at HALF that distance. So getting archery lessons makes a big difference.

Someone who chooses to arm themselves with a bow, axe, knife, and learns some martial arts / how to be stealthy will have an advantage over people who are using rifles and are not stealthy. The rifle hunter will eventually run out of ammo. The exception to this of course is the black powder rifle or anyone who knows how to recycle/make their own bullets, but those are very rare skills.

And even if Coronavirus doesn't become pandemic at least you learned archery and other useful skills. We can always hope that the economy doesn't collapse and everything turns out just fine.

#3. The Five Meter Rule

If possible try to stay at least five meters away from strangers and avoid public places. Why five meters?

Cough droplets carrying the coronavirus can float in the air up to five meters and infect people who are 17 feet away.

Health officials have been telling people to keep a distance of 2 meters, but this is very difficult to do on sidewalks, public transportation, in stores, etc. Let alone 5 meters, which is more ideal.

Worse, the coronavirus can survive on surfaces for up to 1 hour. So if you touch something and then touch your face you could become infected by someone who coughed into their hand, touched an object, and then you touched it less than an hour later.

So you really want to stay 5 meters away from strangers / anyone possibly infected, and if going anywhere public you should avoid touching anything that hasn't been cleaned first. This whole fist-bumping / elbow-bumping idea is actually too risky.

#4. Soap, Soap, Soap

Ironically Purell and similar anti-bacterial products don't actually kill the coronavirus. What you really need is good old fashioned soap and water.

#5. Stop touching your face so often

The average person touches their face at least 20 times per hour. It isn't bad if you are at home all day, but if you go out to a public place you should avoid touching your face.

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