And so, I have devoted a fair amount of thought, learned a good collection of skills, and gathered a decent kit of needed gear. One of the things I have had to contend with is that it is just flat out impossible to carry enough ammo to feed a battle rifle through multiple sustained fire fights.
I encounter so many survivalists that have this Rambo/Mad Max fantasy about how an HTF scenario will play out. They are all about the tactical gear, high cap Semi Automatics (rifle and handgun), and pretty much anything that comes in cameo and feeds that fantasy.
In reality, it is more likely that back woods survival will have a lot more to do with being able to feed yourself than your ability to fight off hundreds of zombies (or brigands, or looters, or wayward ANTIFA types, or the bogeymen of your choice). However, with good shot placement it can be an adequate deer cartridge, and with a .22 LR conversion kit it is great for rabbits and squirrels.
If you intend to use this as a versatile survival rifle, the .22 conversion kit is highly recommended, it will make it easier to carry a larger quantity of ammo, and open the door for acquiring a wider variety of fresh meat. Above Photo: My Girlfriend and I keep these His N Her assortment of Personal Weapons on hand for a “Zombie Apocalypse”.
I favor Pump Guns, and lean towards Moss berg 500s and their illegitimate cousin the Maverick 88s. There are a lot of other good options, including the Remington 870s, and a fair selection of quality Semiautomatics as well.
It comes down to a matter of preference and personal taste, and I have been shooting Moss bergs for 40 some years. So I’ll suffice it to say that I prefer large steel framed pistols, and my full size handgun of choice is the M9 pattern (Including both the Beretta and Taurus 92s).
I like 9 mm, it’s an adequate man stopper and I can carry a bit more ammo for the size and weight than .45 or .40, but all three of those calibers are good choices and abundantly available. Once again, it is my opinion that surviving in the woods is more about putting food on the campfire than it is about shoot-outs with roving bands of desperadoes.
The absolute best defense against all manner of dubious people is avoidance, escape, and evasion. While your gun fighting skills should not be overlooked, your ability to avoid or break contact is far more useful in keeping you alive.
I’m not going to be spending a lot of time stopping to preserve meat, so I’m not going to be all that interested in large game. The .22 offers the ability to provide rabbits, squirrels, and a variety of other tasty little critters.
The best thing about the .22 is that bringing a thousand rounds of ammo is cost, bulk, and weight effective. This is an ammo supply an order of magnitude greater than with the AR, AK, or shotgun, and you can keep a year’s worth of small game in a pocket.
If your primary objective is to break contact and escape, a few rounds of .22 properly placed can buy you the time you need to set that in motion. As I side note, every time someone tells me a .22 won’t even injure an assailant, I ask them if they would mind standing in front of the woodpile while I shoot them.
It’s that preference and habit thing again, this is another gun I have used for 4 plus decades, it has fed me and entertained me, and trained my kids. In this category, I prefer the 1873 pattern single action army type revolvers.
Mine has a 5 ½ inch barrel and was made by Pitta, it is chambered in the legendary .45 colt (Yeah, I’ve got an inner John Wayne that keeps my inner Rambo company! But, there are a lot of pretty effective loads available for the .45 colts, and I don’t live in Brown Bear country.
The .45 is plenty good for any of the local Black Bears that don’t respond to the standard procedure of shouting “BOO!! If you prefer double action, the Ruler Red hawk, and the Smith and Wesson Model 29 are just two of the many fine options available.
This is versatility at its best, and in a survival situation it gives you a greatly increased chance of coming across ammo you can use without carrying a bunch of guns. This range of Calibers and gauges also allows you to hunt just about anything you would want to, provides several good defensive round options, and is even effective on big grumpy bears.
This one is going in my girlfriend’s GHB, since she works 3 hrs away (by truck, a lot longer on foot or horseback! I believe that combo guns of this type are a great choice in The Best Firearms to Survive in the Woods debate.
There are a number of rifles on the Market that offer changeable barrels, as well as the tried and true Thompson Contender Handguns. Take into account what your objectives will be, the duration you may have to survive, the threats you perceive, and the game you intend to eat.
The black synthetic stock is robust and each Model 42 comes with an Uncle Mike’s Go Bag with a durable nylon exterior and MOLLY loops for attaching other gear. In addition, the Glock G19 is one of the most popular handgun models around, so finding spare parts and magazines is easy.
With 15 rounds of threat-stopping ammo on tap this is one of the greatest defensive guns ever made. Ruler 10/22 Takedown: The 10/22 has been one of America’s most popular autoloading rimfires for more than 50 years, and the takedown model offers all the reliability and accuracy you’ve come to expect from these rifles in a portable package.
The 10/22’s blow back action has been tuned to perfection, and the rifle’s rotary magazine functions reliably in the worst conditions. This 12-gauge pump is one of the most popular and reliable repeating firearms in the world, and the FLEX system offers a new level of versatility since you can swap out barrels, stocks and fore-ends to meet your needs.
The JOC comes with a carry bag to help keep items organized, and at $491 it’s a great bargain with serious threat-stopping potential. Smith & Wesson Model M&P R8 : With a capacity of eight rounds, the R8 offers more firepower than other revolvers, yet it still maintains the same level of never-say-die reliability.
It comes with a scandium alloy frame that reduces weight and an accessory rail under the barrel for mounting lights and optics (a great idea on a bug-out gun). .38 Special ammo offers low recoil, and it is very affordable, but you will want to keep some .357 Magnum ammo on hand in case things turn really ugly, and you need extra stopping power.
Even with full-power loads the R8’s large grip keeps the gun planted, and the easy-to-see sights work in low-light conditions. Top 3 Weapons for Wilderness Survival Skip to content Disclosure: When you buy through links on our site we may earn a commission.
One of the main reasons that people don’t go into the wilderness is because they are too afraid of things like getting eaten by a bear. Most of these fears are completely irrational and, statistically, you are a lot safer in the wilderness than in a big city.
My neighbors are constantly saying that they won’t go into the wild because there might be thieves, rapists, murderers, jail escapees, or other creepy weirdos lurking about. In a SHF situation where you’ve got to Bug Out in the wilderness, then I’d definitely want a weapon against starving masses of people you might encounter.
But, in general, the wilderness is a lot safer than the city in terms of crime rates. Consider that the Appalachian Trail has over 4 million users yearly, and you start to realize how much safer the wilderness is than cities.
Most people do not die in the wild from bear attacks (there were only 5 fatal cases in all the 2000s), or even from snake bites. Most people die because they overestimate their abilities, push their limits too far, or are just straight-up unprepared.
In my experienced opinion, this is the absolute best weapon for survival in the wilderness. Pepper spray is also very lightweight and can be carried on the side of your pack, so it is easily accessible.
Some pro-gun enthusiasts will argue that a gun is a good weapon in the wilderness to defend against crazy people who might be living there, or against wild animals. But, statistically, you are lot more likely to injure yourself with a gun in the wilderness than protect yourself with one.
But there are a lot of practical reasons why a gun is at the bottom of this list of wilderness weapons: When every ounce matters, I don’t have room in my pack for a gun.