I’ve known about Ron Hood and his survival videos for a while. But I have to tell the truth…I had never watched any of the videos! While I was at SHOT Show earlier this year in January I got to meet the people behind the production company, Stoney-Wolf Productions. I even got to say a quick hello to his wife, Karen Hood, his widow who is carrying on the survival training since his passing in 2011. After watching the “Advanced Survival Guide” video, I was really sad that he was no longer around to make more videos.

I felt like I was in one of his training classes along with him. I really enjoyed his approach of both funny with practical information. I have a 10-year-old son who is big on watching survival videos on YouTube. He watches about 5 different channels religiously and to be honest, I felt that I wasn’t going to learn anything new in this Ron Hood video. It was filmed in 2009, and I wasn’t sure my son would stay interested and get anything out of it.

Let me tell you, not only did he get something out of it, he stayed glued to the television the entire two hour length of the video! I was amazed. In fact, me, my husband and my son watched the videos together and we felt like we were watching a thriller and we should have had some popcorn with it. We all enjoyed it. My husband, who hadn’t watched any Hood videos before either, said, “He’s knowledgeable, approachable and the information is still very relevant.” My husband and son got ideas for projects they can make together (Apache throwing stars!) and we all will never look at a tent pole and empty shotgun shells again (use them to make an impromptu hunting bow).

Hood even eats a slug at the start of the video! I already knew that cattails were edible, but Ron told me new things about cattails that I didn’t know, such as using the fluff as insulation, and making cordage out of the leaves and arrows out of the stalks.┬áHe also tells how to make a pocket for a handmade sling.

This video is divided into two parts. The first part is the Advanced Wilderness Survival Skills (Primitive Weapons, Tracking Basics, and the second part is Urban Survival Skills. That section was slightly less interesting, but still had some useful information on how to handle things around your home in the event of a social breakdown. Most other survival sites don’t really talk about what to do with our waste…urine and feces…but Hood approaches the topic of “deletion” with practicality and humor in a way that seems like it will work…as long as you have plenty of trash bags around!

He walks through how to get water from a hot water heater. It’s more involved than simply opening up the drain at the bottom. And to tell you the truth, we’ve lived in our house now for 5 years and it never occurred to me to clean out the hot water heater the way he suggests that we do it. That is definitely on my list of household tasks from now on.

Karen played a big role in this video. She spoke about how to use the concept of “copy canning” to build up your emergency food pantry. Essentially, whenever you eat something from your food supply, buy two next time you go to the grocery store. You’ll slowly build up a stock pile without going out and spending a lot of money all at once. She also has a segment on parking lot and vehicle safety, reminding everyone, but especially women, to be aware of your surrounds and vigilant everywhere you are, such as in the grocery store parking lot.

While watching this segment, I felt that it was unfortunate that her segments were so strictly gender based…Ron got to build the cool survival stuff and Karen got to talk about the food pantry. But I reminded myself of when this was filmed. Things really were different then as far as “prepping” being a more masculine thing to do. And the fact that they were bringing a woman into things in the first place was probably a big deal at the time. I even enjoyed watching their baby crawl around in some of the segments.

What really sets these videos apart is the fact that they’re real. Real knowledge from a real person who tells you how things are really going to go when you start making something. I’d recommend these videos for the beginning “prepper” or person who is worried about how they might survive in a SHTF fan situation. By watching this video you will get a lot of knowledge on how to use things you already have access to. You could watch many hours on YouTube without getting this much clear, concise education. I also recommend this video for kids who like DIY type projects. There’s a lot to learn for just about anyone here, even people who think they already know pretty much everything. Purchase this video and others from Stoney-Wolf Productions.