Doomsday Preppers: A Preview

by Erich

Photo copyright National Geographic

I had the opportunity to get a preview copy of the first episode of the upcoming show called Doomsday Preppers which will be airing next Tuesday, February 7th on National Geographic.

I wanted to take a moment to give you guys an idea about what the show is about and what my initial thoughts and reactions are.

From the introductory scenes I immediately thought that NatGeo was going to paint these preppers in a negative light (which I’ve seen other shows do). To my surprise though I thought they did a great job at staying neutral and just documenting what these various preppers are doing if the SHTF.

The first episode documents three different groups of preppers from vastly different walks of life:

  1. A group of 22 preppers from Texas with various skills (military, farming, homesteading etc) with plans of sheltering in a fortified compound capable of being completely off-grid and having 15 years of food storage for all 22 people.
  2. A solo surivivalist in L.A. with plans of living off the land using mostly local plants, wildlife and his wilderness survival skills.
  3. A young 20-something apartment-dwelling female from Houston who has enough supplies to last the initial 2 week chaos with plans to bug out to Mexico.

The basic outline of the show is as follows: Get a glimpse into the lives of each group of preppers, find out what they are preparing for, what types of preps they have, and what they are going to do when the SHTF. At the end of their segments, each prepper receives an expert assessment from Practical Preppers (a company founded by longtime preppers) who share their experiences and knowledge giving them tips on what they could improve upon. After some time, NatGeo follows up with them to see what types of changes they made after the initial assessment was made.

Without going into details about each group (I don’t want to ruin it for you) my feeling is that overall I really liked the show. Not only did I find some of the preppers inspiring (giving me some great ideas for my own plans) but I felt National Geographic did a great job at keeping the tone of the show very neutral and not condescending in any way.

I’m sure many of the everyday Americans that will watch this show will find some of these people (or maybe all) crazy and extreme, but for me I felt right at home (which maybe categorizes me into the “crazy and extreme” crowd :)).

All in all I give the show a thumbs up and would recommend you all to check it out the premier next Tuesday, Feb 7th 9PM EST.

You can get more details by checking out the Doomsday Preppers official website.

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Comment by DPM
2012-02-03 08:41:08

I still have to wonder about the opsec of all this. Sure, you’ve got to take some opsec risk to get any of the rewards of tapping into others’ knowledge in this (or any) field, but the exposure here just seems too much to safely handle with shows like these. The money these preppers are bringing in for their appearances on shows like these would be an awesome addition to the prep budget, but at what price?

Comment by Tactical Intelligence
2012-02-03 17:19:05


I was thinking the same. Even though most of the viewers don’t know you or where you live exactly, I’m sure there are some who do and now know what you are holding up. A definite trade off.

Comment by Gloria
2012-02-03 17:55:33

The people on the show did not receive any money to appear on the show.

Comment by LovesDaSun
2012-02-03 22:17:57

The Survivalmom was featured on the show and posted an article about her experiences with the show on her blog. She had some interesting things to say about the final edit. You can find it at

Comment by Don
2012-02-05 10:18:00

I’ll check out the show, I love seeing new ideas that people come up with. Looking at our country and the condition it’s in, it just feels wrong to me, I feel that something is upon us something bad! I don’t let it consume me but I face the possibilities that something could go wrong and I do the best that I can do to prepare with material things but most importantly “knowledge”. That is the key, knowing what to do if something happens from being able to start fires without matches or a lighter, to knowing how to store certain food items for decades.

And what really makes me feel like we are in trouble is the vast majority of people out there that don’t think anything “will happen”, and refuse to even think about it (denial). And these are the same people that vote the wrong people in office and keep them there. They are so narrow minded. Financial collapse is very possible if something isn’t done now, and the longer this government keeps kicking the can down the road the more likely that it will come to pass.

Comment by Tactical Intelligence
2012-02-06 01:28:39

You’re right Don. Thanks for the comments.

Comment by Rugger
2012-02-06 19:34:13

I am looking forward to checking out the show.

Great website. I’m just starting out with getting prepared. I am putting together the different tiers mentioned in the survival pack article now and have a lot of ideas for the future when I get some more capital to work with. While I have started to get the basics together the Polar Pure tablets are sold out everywhere. The manufacture website says something about an on going court case in California. Do you have any alternative suggestions for that particular item?

Further, I’m an athletic, educated guy but have very minimal outdoors experience. I’ve never been much of a fisherman or hunter primarily because all of my time was spent playing sports, working or in school. Any suggestions on how to get started on becoming more familiar with outdoor survival skills?

I recently bought my first hand gun and have been spending some time at the range with it. I bought an XDM 9mm and plan to buy a shotgun, a 22m rifle and a high powered rifle with in the next year to 18 months. Any suggestions would be much appreciated. Thanks.

Comment by Tactical Intelligence
2012-02-07 12:10:51


Thanks for the comments and visit!

If you can’t find Polar Pure there are many other options. Just do a google search for “water purification tablets” and you’ll find many brands. These aren’t as convenient and long lasting as Polar Pure but will do the job. I’d also check out the “Seychelle Advanced Water Filter Purification Straw” Be sure to get the advanced model (not the cheaper standard model ). These little straws are super compact and can be packed with hardly any extra packing weight. Since I’m a big fan of redundancy, be sure to pack multiple options in the different tiers.

Regarding outdoor survival skills, it’s really a dirt-time thing. You just need to get out there and practice. Start with the priorities: building shelters for your area, water filtration using only primitive means, fire starting etc. Then you can do more advanced skills like plant identification and use, food procurement (hunting/trapping etc).

Comment by R
2012-02-08 16:39:07

In regards to your firearms questions there are an endless number of opinions on the topic. I would suggest you read Boston’s Gun Bible. It is an excellent resource. The author also has many other books that you would find helpful. See for more information. For the record I am not affiliated with the author of these works in any way. I have just found his style to be informative, well researched, and easy to digest.

A few of my thoughts on firearms:
They are to be treated with the utmost respect. Owning them is an absolute individual right, but it comes with a host of responsibilities. Please seek out training and then practice regularly. Learn and practice safe handling and use from day one. Don’t learn bad habbits
While it might not be financially possible for you, consider owning a backup for every firearm you do decide to own….One is none, Two is one
For your shotgun, a pump action like the Remington 870 or a Mossberg is a good choice. Over 10 million 870s have been produced. It is very reliable and inexpensive
For your rifle, a bolt action in .308 caliber is a good way to go…Remington 700, Winchester 70, Ruger are all decent and a reasonable prices. .308 caliber as it offers a very common caliber that is capable of taking a wide range of game.
You should also consider a magazine fed semi-auto rifle. They provide you with a much greater ability to project power and defend yourself against many people when compared to the other items currently on your list. There are many respectable producers of .223 caliber and .308 caliber semi-auto rifles. The number of producers of AR15s alone is a mile long….other platforms that you should consider include FAL, M14, M1 Garand, AK47….and there are just too many details to discuss to give the semi auto topic any justice….

There are many nuances to picking what is best for you. My advice is to do your own research and don’t get bogged down into Chevy vs. Ford vs. Dodge type debates. I would focus on reliability and common calibers (9mm, .40 S&W, .45 ACP in pistols…..223, .308, .30-06 for rifles)….

Best of luck to you!

Comment by Tactical Intelligence
2012-02-14 19:50:14

Thanks for the very informative comments!

Comment by Kevin
2012-03-08 16:26:17

I started my Survival and Emergency Preparedness facebook page just before the “dooms day preppers” series started on tv.. I sat on the page for 5 years waiting for the “right” moment..

let me ask you something..
what makes you think surviving a catastrophe at home is any different than surviving one while traveling??
do YOU plan when traveling?
do you have a bug out bag/ get home bag just in case in your vehicle?
do you have ANY items, large or small, in your vehicle that would help you SURVIVE an unseen blizzard?

look at my page, all are welcome.. and read the news article from Dec 2011 about the elderly couple stranded in the freak blizzard.. the wife died.. but what could have been done to make their rescue better, and their situation more comfortable??

please take a moment and read..

if the link doesnt work here, please drop me an email for a link at

Thank you


Comment by Doug
2012-04-17 19:54:37

I bought some EMP protection Faraday containers on Ebay last week.
I feel so much better now that all of my electronics are now protected.

I have been watching the Sun weather reports.

Magnetic fields curling over the sun’s northeastern limb rose up and erupted, producing one of the most visually-spectacular explosions in years. The event, which also produced an M1.7-class solar flare and a coronal mass ejection, was not Earth-directed. Nevertheless, it confirms suspicions that a significant active region is rotating onto the Earth-side of the sun.

This year protect your electronics!!!!!

Comment by Tactical Intelligence
2012-04-18 12:54:25

Thanks for the great comments Doug. I still do not as yet have any EMP protection for my various electronics. It’s definitely on the list though.

Comment by Mike
2012-07-04 09:59:53

I like this show and there is another about a guy that makes disaster shelters that range from pretty much a tube in the ground to full on single family apartments. The last one I watched him build was 1000 sq. ft with its own training/pistol range (the owner was ex-cop/ex-military/CERT), underground gens, freshwater supply..etc. I don’t think I could do like some of these guys and build a 70-80k structure out in the boonies, miles from my house. Sort of defeats the purpose to me

Comment by DoomCember
2012-10-02 20:53:20

The End is Beer.

Unless you learn to brew your own at home.

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