Homesteading in the Winter Series: Post 4 – Prepping for Winter Emergencies

This post is an ongoing post of the series “Homesteading in the Winter”. This week’s topic is “Prepping for Winter Emergencies”. We can say that by far, this is truly one of the most important posts in the series. The reason is that one of the things commonly noticed is that people do prepare for different types of winter aspects when it comes to homesteading but they don’t consider the fact that any sort of emergencies could arise too. One of the recent examples is the snowstorm in Texas. 

Why Prepare for Winter Emergencies?

As we gave an example, snowstorms are quite common in the US followed by rainstorms and hailstorms. When the recent snowstorm of Texas occurred, many routes were closed, the road travel was disrupted, and the movement aspect was quite restrictive. People could not go out and get anything because the suppliers were unable to reach their designated retailers on time. Here are a few reasons why to prepare for winter emergencies.

You Never Know What’s Going to Happen

The famous quote goes like “Better Safe than Sorry”. Preparing for a snowstorm wouldn’t cause you any financial harm as well. By the end of the day, these are edible items that could be used in lunch or dinner even if there was no winter emergency. However, not preparing for winter emergencies definitely has a risk that you might encounter anything unexpected. Those who prepared for a snowstorm earlier in Texas were able to better manage it all as compared to those that were not prepared. They faced several hurdles as well which were not faced by prepared individuals. 

Warning sign saying winter storm warning
Winter storm season with snowflake symbol sign against a snowy background and copy space. Snow splattered and angled sign adds to the drama.

Food Shortages Could Occur

Another main reason why winter emergencies are important to consider is that food shortages are common. At times, even when situations are normal, the snowfall may be so intense that the routes are disrupted. As a result, food shortages are common. If you have prepared for it, you can avoid facing any shortages and vice versa.

Read more about growing cold fruits and vegetables here – Homesteading in the Winter Series: Post 2 – Growing Cool Weather Fruits and Vegetables

Extras are Essential

Winter emergencies won’t only restrict your food and drinking supplies rather they will also restrict other important forms of energy. For example, power cuts could arise. You might face a shortage of sanitary water. Alternatively, due to extreme snow, you might be needing wood for arranging fire and getting some heat. This is because due to power cuts, the internal air conditioning system will not be working. Similarly, many other extras are also necessary which are discussed below. 

Cars jammed in winter storms
Cars driving on a highway are stuck in traffic because of a snow storm.

How to Prepare for Winter Emergencies?

Preparing for winter emergencies may seem like a hassle, but you can really do it all from the comfort of your home. How? We’ll explain. 

Step 1 – Evaluate Food and Water Requirements

We prioritized food as the first important thing because you can live without electricity, power, and even water for cleaning purposes but you can’t survive without food. Therefore, we recommend having food requirements assessed in detail. Firstly, count the number of people present at your home. Now, take notes of diet – in case someone follows a strict diet such as diabetes patients who can only eat certain foods. Keep in mind that an average of 2000 calories is sufficient for both, a healthy and active man and woman. 

Next, check the foods that can be ordered and easily stored for a long time. Usually, canned foods are the number one option to consider. This is because they are ready to eat and have a longer expiry date as well. Make one day’s worth of food requirements. Let’s say, you finalize that you need 5 cans of beans, 2 bottles of clean water, and 1 can of tuna or any other food item. Once you finalize one day of requirements, you should multiply this by 10. This means that you need to have at least 10 days’ worth of extra food as an emergency could take up to 7 or more days to be resolved. 

As far as water is concerned, keep an ample amount of it at all times. It is not going to go to waste. Besides, we recommend checking the weather updates quite often in winters. In case a snowstorm is coming, try to store water in tanks or even in bathtubs so that if the water supply is cut, later on, you always have something with you. 

Check out the Amazon products listed in the end as they are quite healthy and fulfill the food requirements. 

Canned tomatoes
tomato can white background one center angled 3d rendering

Step 2 – Arrange for Heating and Lighting

Winter emergencies call for arranging heating as well as lighting. In case you don’t have budget issues, we recommend buying a generator as it will solve all your major problems associated with heating and lighting. It will power up your entire house and solve the possible electricity crisis. However, if you don’t have a budget for arranging a generator, some other things might help. 

Get firewood, period. This is the cheapest and an effective solution to dealing with heating and lighting requirements. People who are trapped inside their homes for days could use firewood (at a safe spot) to maintain the temperature. Candles or Emergency Lights are also a necessity because, in case of power cuts, you can’t just take firewood everywhere but the candles or emergency lights might help. Some emergency lights can be charged with solar power as well so keep them as a priority. 

Firepit in snow
winter forest, the tourist warm tea in a pot, snow

Step 3 – Get the Extras

Extras are as equally important as are the necessities. This is because they help you have a comfortable and relaxing time even when the situation outside is not in your favor. Any kind of adverse situation could be dealt with easily if there are extras around you. As far as extras are concerned, you should be having solar appliances such as solar lights, solar toasters, and other such equipment. Besides, you need to have yourself some storage containers yourself so that items can be easily secured. A manual grinder is also useful because power cuts are common. 

Other items include your basic identity information such as a National ID Card, Passport, Social Security Card, and a phone directory as well. In case you have animals, you need to make sure that their shelter is looked for along with their food and water requirements. Get a first aid box as well as other cold medication for cough, flu, fever, and other cold diseases as well. A power bank for charging your electrical equipment is also necessary. Make sure to arrange a satellite phone or radio for communicating in case cellular networks don’t work. If you are in a remote location, arrange some emergency fire signals as well as they can notify the nearby authorities that you are in need of help. 

Here are some common issues you can face in homesteading and their solutions – Common Issues to Expect While Homesteading.

Essential Products for Winter Emergencies

The following are the most important items we consider that you must have with you before the next winter. 

Product
Visual
Where to Buy
ReadyWise Emergency Food Supply
Billy Buckskin Co. Fatwood Fire Starter Sticks
Premium Family Emergency Survival Bag/Kit


1. ReadyWise Emergency Food Supply


We mentioned above that food supplies are essentially important for any kind of emergency. Fortunately, with this one bucket, you don't have to find a lot of products and buy them; rather, this one big bucket is going to be enough for you. The primary reason is that it contains 104 servings. Let’s say you have 10 servings a day which is about 3.3 servings for 3 people each. This means that this one bucket could last for more than 10 days. You won't even have to get any other product as long as you have this one with you. 

In case you are concerned that you might not be able to eat the same kind of food, relax because it has 14 unique items assorted in 104 total servings. These are freeze-dried pouches which means that the food will stay fresh. The best part? The food has an expiry date of about 25 years which means you can have this one survival food kit as a good long-term investment. All you need to do is to add water to the pouches to make them edible.

Different packaging and meal variety options are available so you can get any one according to your requirements.

2. Billy Buckskin Co. Fatwood Fire Starter Sticks


A crucial moment in winter emergencies is when you have your whole family shivering in the cold weather. The air just adds more to the already freezing temperature. To avoid any of this from happening, you can simply buy some fire starter sticks and some other wood to initiate a fire. This one seems like a perfect choice because it is an Amazon’s Choice product too. Most people who purchased it were highly satisfied with the exceptional quality and recommended it to others as well. 

As far as technical aspects are concerned, these fire starter sticks are going to work in any sort of conditions - even when they are wet! They comprise rich pine wood and have resin which allows them to burn so well in all sorts of conditions. This is a 10lb box which is suitable for emergencies but you can get a smaller or bigger one as well. Keep in mind that you would need other wood as well which will stay burning as this is just a fire starter stick.

3. Premium Family Emergency Survival Bag/Kit


Lastly, we recommend that you have an emergency survival bag kit just like this one. As mentioned above, extras are also quite important. If you are a family of 4, this one kit is just perfect for you and has quite many items that are going to help you in the first 72 hours of an emergency. It has  Survival water straws, a portable stove, food, and many more items as well. It even comes with a First Aid Kit so that if you have any sick people around, dealing with them isn't a big issue. Besides, the extra supplies such as LED Lights, fire starting kit, illuminating lamp, and all the other items are in it too. 

Fortunately, most items in it do not have an expiry while those that do, have a long expiry date which makes it a good choice. In case you are a smaller family of just two people, you can get the basic emergency survival bag kit designed for 2 only. Most people who bought this emergency kit were highly satisfied.

 

Essential Products for Winter Emergencies
ReadyWise Emergency Food Supply Billy Buckskin Co. Fatwood Fire Starter Sticks  Premium Family Emergency Survival Bag/Kit
Priority  1 3 2
Price Range $$ $ $$
Pros Proper and healthy food supplies

Long Shelf Life

One pack for all food requirements

Helps in starting a fire easily.

Works in all conditions well.

Multiple packaging options

Comes with necessities and extras

Cons A bit pricey Other wood that has to burn needs to be purchased separately. This one can only start a fire A bit pricey

All three products are important and we recommend you get them all right away. 

Conclusion

That’s all for this week’s post! We hope that you understand the importance of preparing for different types of winter emergencies as it is only for your benefit. Make sure that you share this informative article with others as well so that they can get the essential winter emergency supplies delivered directly to their home via Amazon.com.