HomeSurvival BasicsSurvival Glossary: Talk the Talk

If you are new to the survivalist world, chances are that you could use a good survival glossary. There are a lot of new and confusing terms and acronyms (those seemingly random strings of initials actually mean something!) that can leave a newcomer scratching their head.

The problem is, you really need to know them. The good thing is, we are here to help you. In the inaugural post to our site, we thought that this would make a very good starting point. Following you will find all the confusing survival terms and acronyms that we could find–right alongside their definitions.

If we missed one, we really hope you’ll leave us a comment and let us know, so we can add it to our list.

Survival Tips HQ’s Survival Glossary

Bug In: This means that you plan to stick out the situation in your own home. Instead of trying to make it to a safer location, the choice has been made to buckle down and ride it out.

Bug Out: Pretty much the opposite of bug in. Sometimes this decision is beyond our control, such as in the case of a flood, earthquake, or other natural disaster. Generally this means that staying in your own home is no longer an option, and you have to bug out to somewhere safer.

BOB: The initials stand out for Bug Out Bag. This is a prepared bag containing all the supplies (food, water, clothing and gear) that you will need to get you to your alternative shelter. Also known as the 72 hour bag.

Bushcraft: Basically this is just the term for living off the land. Knowing how to hunt, trap, fish, and gather to keep oneself alive rather than relying on what you bring with you. The mountain men of old were masters of bushcraft.

Camo: A shortened nickname for camouflage.

EMP: Electromagnetic Pulse. This is a short burst (or pulse) of electromagnetic energy. This can be man-made or natural and is generally known to disrupt or damage electronic equipment.

EOTW and TEOTWAWKI: This stands for “end of the world” and “the end of the world as we know it.”

GOOD: This term is usually used for city-dwellers heading for the open country. The initials stand for get out of Dodge.

Homesteading: Making your home and land self-sustaining. A true homesteader will be growing their own food and heating their homes without traditional technology.

MRE: Military term standing for Meals, Ready to Eat. These are freeze-dried meals and great for emergency food stores.

Prepper: The word prepper refers to one who believes in being prepared. A prepper will usually go far beyond just having a BOB ready to go. They may have months of supplies built up as well as a sustainable power source to use in emergency situations, If the SHTF, the preppers will be ready.

SHTF: Acronym standing for “Shit hits the fan.” Popular term used in polite society.

Survivalist: One with the necessary survival skills to stay alive when crisis strikes. They will know where and how to obtain safe food and water, make a fire, and find or build shelter.

Again, if we have missed a term or acronym please let us know in the comments below, so that we can keep this survival glossary as up to date as possible.



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