How to choose the best survival knife?

best survival knifeIn a situation in which your own life is in danger, having a good survival knife can be quite important. Survival knives will help you with various survival tasks such as cutting down branches or even a small trees, hammering tent poles into the ground, or it can even serve as an improvised spear when paired with long stick. Unfortunately not all survival knives are made equal. Therefore spending some time on choosing the best you possibly can, is imperative.

The market is virtually flooded with different survival knives but most of them are not any good and I’m not saying that on the most expensive knife is actually the best one. Actually there are quite a few rather cheap for survival knives which are really good. So let’s look at some of the factors you should consider when buying survival knife.

Firstly I would recommend getting a fixed blade knife because it can endure harsh treatment than folding knives.

Another thing to look for is construction of the knife. I would never buy a knife which doesn’t have the full tang construction. What full tang means, is that the knife is essentially made of one piece of metal that runs from the tip of the blade to the pommel. If you don’t go for the full tang construction what could happen is that the knife will snap in the middle when you’re actually trying to chop something. And that’s definitely not something you want to experience.

I would also avoid an overly long knife and by long I mean over 12 inches long and total. You are looking for a survival tool and not for a sword right? If you ask me I would choose something going the let’s say 5 inch long blade and a similar or actually a bit shorter handle.

Another important factor is choosing the right steel. As you probably know there are two basic types you can choose from, and that is a high carbon steel or stainless steel. On the main difference is that there are high carbon steel is much harder and it can be made much sharper than a regular stainless steel. On the other hand is not corrosion resistant, therefore the manufacturers coat the blades with various materials. That’s why you can see survival knife with blade blades and stuff like that. Stainless steel on the other hand will be resistant to corrosion but it’s so a bit softer and it’s actually easier to sharpen in high carbon steel.

Probably the last thing you should consider is the handle of the knife. It should sit nicely and comfortably in your palm and it shouldn’t slip when the weather is bad. If the knife doesn’t provide strong grip, you can actually badly injure yourself.

Knife you ask me which manufacturer is the best I will not give you clear answer. There are many companies which make high quality knives such as for example the Buck Knives.

Save Money With Solar Pond Pumps!

Garden streams, waterfalls or fountains are soothing and refreshing

Bubbling stream or fountain in the garden is soothing, the air is pleasantly humidified, and your senses are refreshed. Streams are suitable for slopes, cascades and fountains are great for flat terrains.

Garden streamA stream driven by a pond pump in a closed cycle might seem quite natural, if you have at least slightly slopy garden. Sitting close to such water feature and reading a book becomes a real pleasure. One inconvenience of such waterworks is energy consumption.

However some of the modern pumps operate on solar power, so you do not have to worry about it. Best solar powered garden pond pumps are also quite cheap, their downside is that they still lack power needed to drive larger streams.

Plan your garden stream

  • It’s necessary to plan the layout of the stream carefully:
  • The depth of the stream should be about 25 cm, width should be at least half-meter
  • Meanders flowing freely along larger rocks or bushes look natural and charming
  • It’s possible to delay the water flow at several locations in the form of small quiet pools
  • If you have a strongly sloping terrain, you can create some very impressive cascades and waterfalls, preferably made of natural stone
  • Sparkling rapids can be created with larger boulders
  • Walkways and bridges must be maintained at the appropriate places if the stream is too long

Stream insulation

  • The bottom of the stream has to be isolated by a liner
  • The banks should be slightly higher to prevent water from flooding your lawn
  • Cover the edges of the liner with pebbles
  • Sand, pebbles and possibly soil for plants should cover the bottom of the liner

Which pond pump should you choose?

  • Solar-powered pumps may sometimes cost more, but you will have no problems with wiring, and above all energy consumption
  • For garden streams, the pump should have a flow rate of at least 800 GPH should be resistant to dirt
  • Traditional electrical pumps are more powerful than the solar ones and they can operate during the night
  • The pump should be placed in the ending pool or pond

Pond fountains

  • Fountains are very refreshing and children love them during summer – the glitter caused by sunlight reflecting in the droplets is magical
  • The fountain will bring a pond to life, but you can let it bubble out in any part of the garden
  • A basin should be placed under the fountain pump to bring the water back into circulation
  • The basin can be filled with stones, pebbles, plants and ornamental grasses
  • To prevent water wastage, the height of the fountain should not exceed half the length of the basin underneath it
  • Again, you can opt for a solar powered fountain pump to save some money

Source: PickMyPondPump

Couch Surfing, Sleeping on Planes, Trains, and Beaches

Couch Surfing
Couch Surfing is the process of networking with locals in the areas you will be traveling, and making arrangements to stay with them. This networking can come in two forms:

  • People you know
  • People you met online

People you know. If you read my Previous Article Part 1 you would know, one of the major advantages of hostels is the opportunity to meet new people. Over the course of my travels I have met hundreds of people all over the world. I made sure to connect with them on Facebook. Now if I have an overnight layover in Hungary, Oslo, or many other countries, I can have a couch to sleep on and a night of great conversation!


People you met online. Often people in foreign countries are more accepting of strangers, enjoy backpacking, and sometimes have an affinity for meeting Americans. Sometimes people abroad just want to practice their English. I even know someone who agreed to write English Resumes for foreigners throughout a trip in Europe in exchange for places to stay. Places like help to facilitate these networks and arrangements.

I personally have never stayed with someone I had not met personally beforehand. I would STRONGLY caution people to not only use common sense, but to be skeptical of some offers. Obviously traveling alone and doing this could be dangerous, especially for females. For me to do this I would want to be traveling with friends, know the person, or a person who gave a recommendation.

Sleeping on Planes and Trains:
It is possible to book a 4 to 5 day trip in which you have medium length flights, or long train rides between destinations. If you can plan this transportation overnight you can use that opportunity to get sleep along your trip.

The benefit is obviously the low cost by avoiding “official” accommodations. However the downside is the safety risks. While you are sleeping, your luggage, or passport could get stolen. You may also leave yourself low on good sleep, adding risk of making poor decisions due to exhaustion. This could be as simple as not looking RIGHT before stepping out in a street in London, to leaving yourself ripe for common tourist cons and pickpockets.

Personal Hygiene can be an issue as well. Many foreign countries have public spas, often with relatively low entrance fees. These can be used for bathing and changing. In developing and underdeveloped countries, often it is not unusual for people to go a few days between showers. You may not be too far out of place by just washing up in a bathroom of a restaurant or train station.
Trips using this method should be well planned, and should be reserved for a more seasoned traveler. You need to have the discipline to sleep when you were supposed to, and stay alert when you need to.

Sleeping on the Beach, or not sleeping at all
Sleeping on the beach is only an option for very specific types of trips. Able to plan a 2 day stopover in Hawaii on your way to Asia? For instance, you could plan to arrive, go out for a night on the town, crash on the beach from 4am to 7am, then grab breakfast and head to the airport.

This option is highly discouraged. The most significant risk is theft of your belongings while you sleep. Also this may be illegal in the locality where you are at, and some beaches have hours they are not open to the public.

Under NO circumstances would I recommend sleeping on the street. Even as a wanderer, and avid budget traveler, this is just taboo and somewhat disrespectful of the location you are traveling to. At least the beach has some nostalgia to it, being a bum, not so much.

As far as not sleeping at all, let’s face it, humans need sleep. The less you get, the more likely you will make stupid mistakes. While traveling you will likely be walking a lot. You will be more tired than you think you are. And you will put yourself in danger. I have done this, to the extent of 80 hours on no sleep. But I do not recommend it especially for a non-expert traveler.

Hopefully this article can open your travel planning to some unconventional means of finding accommodations abroad. With careful planning, and experience, you can save hundreds of dollars by using some of these methods. If you enjoyed it please Share, hit the Google +1 button, and Subscribe. Those actions encourage me to keep sharing helpful travel tips!