Quantcast

Lone Prepper Op

Help Support Homesteading Forum:

Rosco

Friend
Neighbor
Joined
Aug 21, 2020
Messages
21
Location
New England
I initially got into radio and HAM as a result of concerns over my family’s welfare in a SHTF scenario. My naive goal was to get a HAM license, make contact with other folks (preppers) who had taken similar steps (or went big on CB) and develop a casual mutual support network.

So, two years later and I have nice radios, tall antennas (antennae ?), and have participated in various traffic , weather and social nets, but have yet to encounter a single prepper type operator. Admittedly, my state is not big on natural disasters and such that would precipitate people having personal SHTF radio comms, but it seems that either I’m just not knocking on the right doors or there’s just not many (any) comm-savey preppers in my neck of the woods.

I’m at a loss for a way to make the type of connections I’m looking for. I think at the core of my challenge is that mine is just not a prepper oriented part of the country… too few disasters, a high level of affluence, too much reliance on state/municipal first responder groups and a limited population of self-reliant minded people. In short… nobody sees the need to do SHTF comms. Guess I’m doomed to be a lone prepper-op.

��6�X�R
 

SheepDog

Awesome Friend
Neighbor
HCL Supporter
Joined
Dec 3, 2017
Messages
5,410
Location
SE Washington State
When the need arises people will be using their radios. You will have more contacts tha you want. Some of them will be predatory - be careful.
If you can, set up a low power transmitter to a higher power repeater to stay under the radar of trackers.
 

dademoss

Low Speed High Drag Operator
Neighbor
HCL Supporter
Joined
Dec 10, 2017
Messages
2,643
Location
Dunlap Station, Ohio
I'm curious as to how you would know a "Prepper type operator"? I sure wouldn't tell a random radio contact much beyond signal report and such. Even the local ARES group doesn't know the extent of most peoples preps beyond emergency radio gear.
 

bkt

Awesome Friend
Neighbor
HCL Supporter
Joined
Dec 8, 2017
Messages
689
Same here, Rosco - got my General ticket to keep comms open. I have also gotten a few friends to get their licenses. They're local to me and we know we can communicate if conventional methods go down. A few GMRS repeaters in my area have been set up by preppers I know. I happen to know many amateur operators locally who are preppers and we never talk prepping on the air. It's always discussion about radio-related stuff.

A better approach would be to find a local discussion forum or meetup group of like-minded people. Bear in mind most preppers aren't going to discuss what they have with strangers; you need to get to know each other and build trust. There may not be a prepper or survivalist group. Look for something that might attract like-minded people. Groups for orienteering, hiking, vegetable gardening, etc. are likely to have members who are preppers.

If you have local friends or other family members, get them into prepping. Then encourage them to at least purchase a GMRS license if not get an amateur license.
 

bkt

Awesome Friend
Neighbor
HCL Supporter
Joined
Dec 8, 2017
Messages
689

Rosco

Friend
Neighbor
Joined
Aug 21, 2020
Messages
21
Location
New England
Thanks to everyone for your comments.

It's pretty clear that prepper-minded people aren't going to reveal as much over the radio. I guess with amateur radio being so closely associated with disaster response, I expected a bit more overt preparedness culture to be evident. I've looked at CERT training that stresses the need for communications and home & family preparedness, but it doesn't seem to find it's way into the on-air group discussions of the people who are organizing the community comms part of that effort. I don't expect people to declare the degree of their personal preps, but I did expect to hear open encouragement of members to comply with their own organizational guidelines.

@bkt, I'm sure you're right. The answer is to connect with people who are involved in prep-type activities and promote the communications end from there. Unfortunately, the more that conflict grows in our country, the less likelihood it is that people are going to embrace any kind of reaching out or exposure.

@SheepDog, I'm pretty sure you're right as well. When things really get chaotic, people will be all over their radios... legal or otherwise.
 

SheepDog

Awesome Friend
Neighbor
HCL Supporter
Joined
Dec 3, 2017
Messages
5,410
Location
SE Washington State
Yes, unfortunately, educated or not. You must know how easy it is to triangulate a signal so locating your 20 is easy unless you take precautions.
 

Rosco

Friend
Neighbor
Joined
Aug 21, 2020
Messages
21
Location
New England
Yes, unfortunately, educated or not. You must know how easy it is to triangulate a signal so locating your 20 is easy unless you take precautions.
Yup, I'm well aware of fox hunt methods. I have a couple low-power mobile units with extended whips and homemade slim-jim hang-up/roll-up antennas. I've yet to build a portable beam, but it's a project for this winter. In any SHTF scenario that requires a response with tactical considerations, my base radios would rarely be powered up. I built swivel bases in my antenna poles, so that both can be laid flat to the ground behind structures in a matter of minutes... protection against bad weather.
 

Meerkat

Awesome Friend
Neighbor
HCL Supporter
Joined
Dec 3, 2017
Messages
21,558
Very interesting thread. Of course I hven't mastered my laptop but still good to know some will have contact when shtf.
 

Bacpacker

Awesome Friend
Neighbor
HCL Supporter
Joined
Dec 4, 2017
Messages
6,541
Location
East Tn
Rosco, maybe look into a area EmComm group. ARES/RACES types. They are mostly all about operating in emergencies. There will be some prepper types in those groups, some not all. Get to know them, work events with them. Contacts will come along.
 
Top