By Cameron McKirdy with Hugh The Gypsy

See what car living is like for a gypsy travelling on the road in HD video.  I think he has a great gear setup for van dwelling.  I’m jealous of his sink, with a clever gravity fed water system, harnessing an inexpensive solar shower.  Plus, his lighting setup works, and didn’t cost much, thanks to a trip to Dollar Tree.  You can’t tell Hugh is in there either, since it’s a cargo van without side rear windows.  The dark exterior paint color blend into the darkness, making him more stealth.  I like what he has done to insulate the metal sides with cardboard and aluminum tape.  Hugh knows the cardboard is organic material, and will eventually decompose, but it’s easy to replace with fresh insulation later.  Even the interior wall panels are stuffed with recycled shopping bags for added warmth.  We list all of the car camping items for you to spark your imagination, but is there anything you’d add to the recreational vehicle?  More van dwelling videos on the way.  Stay tuned to Survival Bros.  

Van Dwelling Eugene ORA gypsy van dweller standing by his Astro cargo camper in Eugene, Oregon

 

By Cameron McKirdy – Survival Bros Founder

Survival Bros smashes the screen of a cellphone with a new COAST Products F611 Tactical Field blade.  It was total destruction!  The carbide tip can also muscle through regular glass, Plexiglas, and plastic.  It’s a sturdy knife, and I usually have it handy at the bottom of my backpack, just in case.  The F611 is a solid tool for camping, because it can help you process wood for a fire, or even when creating an emergency shelter.  You’ll like working with it, and it’s guaranteed by COAST.

Please SUBSCRIBE on YouTube, like, comment, and share if you want more HD videos.  Visit the COAST Products for more gear, and information.  Here’s the link to my other blog on Art, and video production.  http://www.cameronmckirdy.com

Tech Specs:

Cost $43.99 Retail

  • 7Cr17 stainless steel blade
  • 6.0 in. blade
  • 11.0 in. overall
  • 10.8 oz.
  • Tactical elastomer handle on stainless steel frame
  • Molded, hard protective sheathCoast F611 Survival Field Knife

A budget survival knife worth considering

 

By Cameron McKirdy

I stopped by Yogi Tea Headquarters in Springfield, Oregon today.  After buzzing the doorbell I was welcomed inside, out of the rain.  They don’t give tours of the building, but offered me a handful of sample tea packets to try.  I took my time investigating each type, but ended up taking every kind I think.  Pictured are new varieties I’ve never seen on store shelves before.  You can find Yogi teas by the box at nearly every health food shop.  They are delicious.  I’m grateful for the hookup.  It paid off to stop, and inquire.  These will go into my EDC bag immediately for later consumption.  But I got two of their Roasted Dandelion Spice Detox formula, so I will have to drink that tonight. 

image

Try organic tea from Yogi https://www.yogiproducts.com

Produced by Cameron McKirdy in Seaside, Oregon

Survival Bros goes car camping, and cooks food with the new Pinnacle Base Camper Large from GSI Outdoors.  The slick gear features their nFORM Destination System, offering a nesting design for compact storage.  Watch in HD video as I show you how it works, and clean it with ease.  

The camp cookware is top quality.  Each item is designed for hard use, and extended durability.  The Teflon coating on the two pots, and large skillet is abrasion resistant, so harmful chemicals won’t be scratched off into food.  Plus, the metal is proven to distribute heat evenly, for quick cooking.  You can see in the vlog how my food is boiling over the entire radius.  Also, GSI Outdoors has developed every product they make to be BPA-free.  That’s good, because I don’t want my hormones being disrupted.  This Washington State based company has the excursion items you need.  Carrying around swag from them makes my life much easier, because it does the job, and lasts.  

The Base Camper Large is ideal for a group of four, so I intend on using it when I entertain while tenting with friends, or I’m just super hungry.  You’ll be glad you got a set like this if you enjoy camping, an preparing meals outdoors.  Retail price is $109.95.  Visit GSI Outdoors for more info, and check out the Pinnacle Camper set for the ultimate, integrated cooking and eating solution.  

base camper

Link to the GSI Outdoors Product Page

By Cameron McKirdy in Seaside, OR

Are you a natural scavenger like me?  I often dream about prepping for disasters by roaming the streets, searching for anything I can use; pens, paperclips, tape, food, water, First Aid supplies.   It’s crazy how much people in America through away.  Lots of items in the trash are still good, another man’s treasure.

I made a pit stop at Goodwin Park at 1172 Necanicum, on the corner of 12th in Seaside, Oregon.  When I got out of my Volkswagen Vanagon, I noticed I had rolled over eight AAA, and AA batteries.  So I did the natural thing, and busted out my HD camera for a vlog rant.  Turns out these energy sources were still full of life.  They must have fallen out of someone’s vehicle or bag.  I swooped them up, and put them in my EDC backpack for storage.  I have many flashlights, and headlamps that could use these batteries later.

What have you scavenged around town or in the woods?  It’s always fun to find stuff you can use, especially money.  But don’t get too attached to anything, because you could lose it also.  Like the time when I recently found $20 on the ground, put it in my pocket, only to realized it fell out of my jacket before I could blow it!  

salmon seaside

Seaside Oregon Mosaic Mural Photo of Goodwin Park

Produced by Cameron McKirdy in Gearhart, OR

Watch me perform an extreme cut test on the new COAST Products BX315 knife.  I see how it handles trash I found at the beach in Oregon.  This folder is a work horse, and practical to use daily as part of your EDC (Every Day Carry) items.  I love the rubberized handle, because it won’t slip out of your hand.  Plus, I demonstrate it’s tough, because the rubber survived being sliced into, and didn’t show damage, as seen.  I even tore through a pop can, and didn’t nick up the edge.  Combine that with the deep notches on top of the handle, the two large finger grooves, and the BX315 is trustworthy.  The back lock is also secure, so I never worried about it failing and closing on my hand.  It must be safer than traditional liner locks on knives.  

In the HD video test I showed that action boss.  I cut out a lot of the talking, but I know true knife enthusiasts like specs.  The blade length is 3.25 inches long.  Overall the tool is 8.625 inches.  Weight equals 3.6 ounces, which is hardly noticeable in your pocket.

COAST also makes a smaller version that has a 3 inch cutting surface.  I want one.  It’s called the BX300.  Check out their full line of great products on http://www.coastportland.com  All gear is backed by Coast’s lifetime guarantee against defects in materials and workmanship.  Make sure to get your free COAST LED flashlight too.  Just read the following blog for details, the link, and another video on that sweet deal.  http://wp.me/p2zgf8-nE  You only have to pay for shipping and handling, which is minimal.  Now you have a reason to try out this company, if you haven’t already.  COAST Products proves that quality doesn’t have to cost you a fortune.  The BX315 is Survival Bros tested and approved.  Get one, and let me know what you think.  Thanks for supporting your emergency preparedness blog.  Peace, love, and gear.

bx315

Now you know what to request for Christmas – The COAST BX315

By Cameron McKirdy

One of my favorite activities do to for myself is taking a trip to an isolation chamber, or flotation tank in PDX.  The two spas Survival Bros have checked out are Float On, and Common Ground.  Both are open to the public, just call ahead before you try this form of alternative medicine.  There’s many benefits to floating, but in general it’s excellent for meditation, and relaxation.  Specifically, I use this type of therapy for an improvement in circulation, and to enhance creativity.

So how does it work?  Well, the video interview featuring Joe Rogan is a good place to start your journey.  But since I have experience, here’s how it went when I stopped by Common Ground at the Everett House Healing Center and Spa.  They are located at 5010 NE 33rd Ave, Portland, OR 97211. First, I reserved a floating session by phone (503-238-1065), which cost $65 for 90 minutes.  If you call them, and ask for a promotion, you may be able to get a better rate.  There’s two tanks here.  Common Ground is a wellness co-operative, so consider becoming a member for more savings.  It’s a wonderful environment, bursting with plant life outside, and welcoming people all around.  The reception area is cozy.  Shop, explore other services, such as massage, or you can help yourself to a beverage like hot tea.  Check in for your float, then grab an over-sized towel and hit the showers and sauna.  Beware, locker room may be coed at times, so you may see some boobies.

After loosening up in the sauna, and breaking a sweat, I rinsed off again, and took off my bath towel.  I slipped into the dark tank, and got settled in.  Using earplugs is recommended, so one more bodily sense is cut off from The World.  That’s the idea.  You use an isolation chamber to go inside yourself, work through issues, and make discoveries.  A floating air pillow supports your head and neck.  Then you simply lay there in darkness, mostly submerged in salty water.  The Epsom solution is ideally the same temperature as your skin, at 93.5-95 degrees.  So as you relax, you begin to lose a sense of where your body ends, and where the The Universe begins.  It’s like being thrown back into the womb.  Finally, you’re alone with yourself again, and can process life better.

Follow the links provided to find out more benefits of flotation tanks.  You’ll begin to discover how it changes your brain.  If you try out an isolation tank, you may feel your mind bending.  According to Common Ground in Portland, OR this “stimulates left/right brain synchronization; shifts brain waves from Beta to lower frequency Alpha, Theta and even Delta; creates mental clarity, alertness; increases creativity, problem solving; heightens visualization; deepens meditation; expands awareness, intensifies acuteness of all the senses, accelerates learning.”  Sign yourself up.  If you try this, you won’t be disappointed.  It is not a waste of time.  It’s something new to most, and good for you on many levels.  Leave a comment if you have additional questions, and I will do my best to answer them.  I will explore this topic further, and blog more about floating soon.  Cheers.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isolation_tankfloat tank PDX

“You won’t be in pain, if you have peace at heart.” – Cameron McKirdy in an Isolation Tank

float on inside chamberIsolation Tank photos taken by http://instagram.com/rockman_rocks at Float On in Portland, OR

I needed to fly away.  I packed up my huge 110 Liter Kelty backpack, and boarded a plane for Denver, CO.  Listening to Dre, Snoop, Hendrix, and Wiz set the mood on the ride.  My brother lives in brick apartment downtown, and was generous enough to let me stay one week there.  He showed be around, mentioned cool spots to frequent, but mostly I just got high a mile above the sea level I swam from.

Staying in the historic Capital Hill district, there were Marijuana Dispensaries within walking distance.  I anticipated the treats I’d savor, and the bud I’d put in the air.  The AMCH hooked me up with all sorts of medicated goodies, as seen in the pictures below.  Of course, I didn’t get the best deal as a Oregon resident, compared to people with medical cards.  I will say, however, it’s good to know friends in high places for the best stuff.  I showed my OR ID, and purchased a bag load of THC infused gummy and taffy candies, cookies, Ear Wax, Pixie Sticks, strains of Indica and Sativa, and a very special Chocolate Rice Crispy Treat.  The green, gooey bar was loaded with 500 milligrams of activated THC.  The label warned of couch lock, and I found out that’s a real thing.  After eating all of it, it took too much energy to move.  I watched Judge Judy for 3 days straight.  Sure, Denver is a fun city, but I didn’t visit there to act trendy, and fit in.  So I smoked every 15 minutes, and got fatter.  It sounded better than trying to pick up chicks.  I had a hard enough time trying to pick out a can of coffee that wasn’t decaffeinated.  And with the thin air up there, picking up anything is difficult, especially females.  I’d need an oxygen mask for sex.

I felt free being able to carry a fat bag of smoke, and edibles down the street without worry.  Now, Oregon, Washington, Alaska, and D.C. have ended marijuana prohibition.  Measure 91 in OR has been years in the making.  With a tax on it, everyone wins.  Except the people that have never tried pot, and refuse to.  Ignorance is a dying breed.  If you haven’t puffed weed, do all stoners a favor, and don’t comment on something you don’t know anything about.  Weed is real medicine.  So ditch the pills, and consider Nature’s cure for just about everything – MARIJUANA!

Check out different pot varieties, and the AMCH shop in Denver, CO

My fellow Oregonians rejoice the news that Measure 91 has passed, and weed in legal in our State!

state-flag-colorado

Free at last in Colorado!

By Cameron McKirdy

The colors! Witness two magical rainbows going into the Pacific Ocean water. Filmed in HD video on the Prom near 12th Ave. in Seaside, Oregon. Produced by http://www.cameronmckirdy.com  More fun movies, and van dwelling Vlogs coming soon.  The Volkswagen Vanagon is still putting around.  Thanks for visiting my website.  Have you ever seen a double rainbow in person?  It was awesom.  I love The Universe.

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insta rainbowsMan walking Seaside, OR Promenade soaks up The Rainbows 

By Cameron McKirdy

There was a High Wind Warning in effect yesterday on the Oregon Coast, but I didn’t get the memo in time.  75 MPH wind gusts destroyed my home.  The Coleman Hooligan 3-person tent leveled, poles shattered, nylon shreded.  I wouldn’t purchase this entry level gear again.  Buyer beware!  The worst part is, replacement poles for this shelter are temporarily out of stock.  Unacceptable.  So I had to throw a $100 tent in the garbage.  It was too far gone, and I don’t have the time or energy to mess with repairs.  However, I saw you can get tent pole repair sleeves at REI or under a buck.  So that’s good to know.

Can you recommend a good 4-season tent?  I’m researching Mountaineering tents online, but there aren’t many one person setups.  I do have a Gor-Tex Bivy bag in storage, just in case.  Maybe a waterproof sack like that is the only thing that can beat the wind, by staying low, and not having any supports, or stakes in the ground.  That would make for presumably less resistance against the elements, just held in place by the weight of my sleeping pad, bag, and body.  

Coleman Hooligan 3

Fiberglass poles snapped in half by High Winds

I will keep y’all posted on my sleeping systems as they continue to evolve.  Thanks supporting your fun emergency preparedness blog – SURVIVAL BROS.  Please SUBSCRIBE with your email on the top left side of the screen!  Visit again soon.  And don’t forget to read the archives, featuring previous adventure stories.  Peace and love.  More information, and stimulation on my Video Production website http://www.cameronmckirdy.com

Find out more on repairing your own broken tenting poles on Backpacker.com