SHTF Meaning

Pretend there’s been a nuclear fallout, natural disaster or even a financial collapse which causes the world to take a turn for the worse. In the pepper world, this is often referred to as SHTF, or, Shit Hits The Fan. This means complete chaos has ensued. As a result, you’ll often see people scouring for food, shelter and even weapons to prepare themselves for a “dog eat dog” world. It’s surely a worse case scenario you don’t want to find yourself in.

In the majority of cases those that practice prepping do have a leg up for the simple fact they have prepared for events that require a survival mentality. They often have bug out bags full of survival gear preparing them for days on the road. They often have weapons that will keep the enemies away and also use for hunting game which can serve as fuel to keep them surviving longer.


So, what is it that you can do to prepare yourself when SHTF? First and foremost you need a SHTF plan which includes proper gear and weaponry. You do not want to find yourself out in the woods in a scenario where it’s “you vs them” and they have the gear and equipment. We’ve listed some of the best SHTF gear you can buy to prepare yourself for a worse case scenario.

Weatherman Multitool

A multitool is a must have in a survival scenario. A multitool comes with instruments that can serve many purposes such as cutting, sawing, screwing, prying and more. Most importantly, it’s probably considered one of the smaller, more effective survival tools you can find. There are several on the market you can choose; from cheap to expensive. We found that the Leatherman Multitool is a nice halfway point when it comes to number of tools, quality, and cost.

Wise Food Survival Backpack

The Wise Food company has put out many great products for those looking to prep for a survival scenario. Part of their product line are their remade bug out bags which come comprised of essentials needed to survive a handful of days. The Wise Food Survival Backpack comes with everything from water pouches, metal can, waterproof matches, preserved food and more. Remember, if you think you’re going to have more than one person in your survival party, buy more than one bag. Otherwise, you’ll need to begin rationing sooner than planned.

FIFUN Survival Paracord Bracelet & Compass

The FIFUN Survival Paracord Bracelet is dual purpose – it can serve as your directional friend with its compass but also serves as rope being made of paracord. Paracord can be helpful in many situations such as climbing, using with animal traps, possible fishing and much more. This piece of survival equipment is one of the cheapest but most helpful in your entire arsenal.

Gerber Bear Grylls Survival Hatchet

Not ever combat situation is long-range. That’s the reason why a quality hatchet is a nice to have. Not only is this useful for close combat but it’s an imperative tool if surviving in the wilderness. It can be used to chop down small trees to form your shelter, skin an animal to prepare for feeding and protection against unruly animals such as bears. Gerber makes some of the most quality-built tools, which is why we recommend the Gerber Bear Grylls Survival Hatchet.

CenterPoint Sniper 370 Crossbow Package

Lastly, if you need to protect yourself or others using long-range combat, having a silent weapon might be most powerful. A crossbow has the power and distant to take out any enemy or invading animal that might pose a threat to your group. The CenterPoint Sniper Crossbow is exactly what you need to protect you, your family and pack.


Now that we have addressed the meaning of SHTF and proposed some of the best SHFT gear, it’s time to build out your SHTF plan. Remember the old sang – “Fail to Plan, Plan to Fail.” If you plan appropriately you’ll immediately have a leg up on the others in your whereabouts.

Gather Information

The first step in your SHTF planning should be gathering all of the pertinent information about the situation. Was there a nuclear fallout? Was there a financial collapse? Is the panic affecting your community, an outward radius of [X], or the entire country or even world? Knowing this information will help you appropriately prepare for the scenario at hand. Unfortunately, it might not help you prepare gear any differently because the supplies you have around the house, is the supplies you have around the house. This is why it’s important to keep your arsenal as well stocked as possible… which leads us to the next step.

Gather Gear and People

Both gear and people can be the most important puzzle pieces to your survival. They can both support you in varying ways in a multitude of survival scenarios. The proper SHTF gear can prepare you for close or far combat if it comes to that. People can do the same; instead of eyes and ears of only yourself, the more people, the more awareness that is brought to the group.

Keep in mind, that larger groups, however, can have their downfalls in that there are more people to keep alive, keep well nourished, worry about or even keep alive if something awful were to happen. So, although a party of more than one or two might sound great, you need to think the threshold which could set you up for failure.

Set Up Communication

You wouldn’t want to get lost in the woods without having a way to find your party would you? That’s why setting up the proper communication plan is important during a survival scenario. There are several ways you can prepare your communication plan; communication can be through walkie-talkies, signals such as fire or even whistling, or simply sticking together in a tight knit group removing the need for longer distance communication. Although the latter might be the most attractive option, having walkie talkies could aid in communication if you need a plan b.

Move to Predetermined Place

This step might be a more difficult step in your survival efforts. Although one predetermined place of gathering would be best case, if you’re fighting against others in the same chaotic nightmare, it would be wise to have two to three predetermined locations to meet at. It’s important to prioritize those so party members do not disperse to different meeting places.

Establish Security

Once you’ve found your safe haven for the next several days or weeks, the next step is to establish some sort of security. You can do this in any number of ways. You can have a person from your party keep watch and rotate on a predetermined time interval. You can set up the old-age bear trap using string and any aluminum you can find that would clatter together once touched. You can also, if very well equipped, set up security cameras to keep watch. This of course is if power is still available.

Take Inventory

Now that your “home” is established and secure, you’ll want to take an inventory of your gear and equipment you have. This is very important as it’ll help you determine how many days you believe yourself and your party can stay alive without having to source out other food, shelter and weaponry.

Remember, plan to ration all of your food as you never know how many days you’ll be stuck in your situation.

Define Next Steps

It might be hard gathering intel on the chaos that is surrounding you if there is a total communication blackout. And thus, it’s important for your group to plan your next actions where and when appropriate. An effective way to measure the need to move to your next action is based on your food and weaponry inventory. If you’re running low and there’s no easy source to come by more inventory, you best plan to move on.