Basic Equipment for a Survivalist Trapper
Trap types for Survivalists here
This is the first post about trapping so I need to make some things absolutely crystal clear before we go very far into this subject.
1st) Disclaimer- Most of what works really well in this field is illegal. You are on your own if you decide to implement any of this, in any way, shape or form before checking with your states game laws first.!!!
2nd) This is one area where mistakes hurt, and sometimes kill what you don’t want dead. Family pets, and in some cases small children can be seriously injured with these things. They are not toys to impress your buddies with. They are designed to kill things and they do it very well.
3rd) When I say something is a bad idea, that doesn’t mean you should immediately open a beer and say, “I wonder what would happen if?” I know for sure what would happen, that’s why I warned you.
IF you are adult enough to accept these things then welcome to the section of reducing live animals to food and fur.
This post will be in separate parts. The first part Im going to talk about the basic things you need before you set a single trap or snare.
The first item on my list is a basic 5 gallon bucket. Buckets are a prepper’s as well as a Trappers best friend. A bucket organizer which goes over the rim of the bucket and has pockets to hold small items and bottles of scent lure is a great thing to have. At times these can be hard to find, I know locally they go out of stock fast at the hardware store.
The second is another friend of the prepper and trapper. The roll of bailing wire.
Get the big roll, you will use it for everything and its cheaper this way anyway.
I honestly did not know, people had no idea what this was for, until I was sitting on the side of a country road reloading a hay baler with wire. The spools go into racks inside and feed out through the compressor to hold the hay together into a” bale”.
A car stopped. Out of state plates. The people were obviously not familiar with a hay baler, and I heard the man tell his wife ” look, even a kid knows how to fix that machine with baling wire”. I was probably 10 at the time. My first look at ignorance, up close and in my face.
Bailing wire is used to attach trap chains, anchors, snares and what else to solid anchor points such as a big rock, fence posts, culvert bars, trees whatever.
When you cut a section of wire off the spool, the larger the loop you keep it in the less trouble you will have when using it. The fewer kinks the better. I like to roll it roughly the same diameter of the inside of the bucket so it stays secure and where you need it. Just cut it off the spool and drop it in the bucket. Some guys will drill a hole and run the end through, but then your bucket wont hold liquids. It will feed the wire nicely, so there is merit to the idea.
Wire ties- same idea as wire but a little faster to rig. A wire tie is best used where you have a trap you probably shouldn’t, so you need to get in and set it, then when its time, get in and recover it quickly.
This is important. Get the strong ones not rated less than 100bs breaking strength.
Elbow length rubber glove- These are a point of contention for trappers. Some say human scent should be kept totally off everything staying at the trap site. So you must wear gloves at all times setting and handling traps and related equipment. I’m in the air personally. I’ve seen evidence of both sides of the argument. What I like is wearing a liner inside in the colder weather so my hands don’t get wet and cold as fast.
This is a personal choice. I say experiment and see what works in your area. I’ll be coming back to human scent issues later. Just be aware of the issue and keep an open mind.
3X3 section of canvas tarp- this is to put your bucket on when setting a trap, and to kneel on when working at ground level to keep your scent off the ground.
Boots– I like the all rubber type. The kind with the elastic closure on top keeps your pants in and water out. Trapping is cold and wet enough as it is without making it more .Keeping these as scent free as possible is the catch. Don’t wear them at the gas station, garage at home, etc. Put them on when you get out of whatever transportation you are using and take them off before getting back in.
Catch pole– if you are using a leg hold type trap you DO NOT want to kill the animal at the trap set point. You need to move the animal and not get blood everywhere if you want to be successful at the same place again.
I made my own, but you can get a commercial one if you don’t trust your methods of construction, I don’t blame you. This to hold 30+ lb angry animals like Raccoons at close combat distances
When I put it that way perhaps I might consider buying one myself at some point.
Spade– I like the fiber handles not wood. Big reason here. If you leave a wood handled anything out,Porcupines will eat the handles right off your tool. Synthetic handles are not on the menu for anything I can think of, off the top of my head. Yes they are pricey.
3/4 length Hudson Bay axe- No, don’t get jumpy. Any single bit axe will do, however…..axes are like any other cutting tool. You definitely get exactly what you pay for with axes. Please don’t go cheap Chinese here.
Synthetic handle, good steel, and lightweight. I would have traded my best fur, owners choice for one of these growing up.
Buy once, cry once. You will see that philosophy again, so get used to it.
Most people don’t realize if you are walking a long trap line a firearm is rarely carried. With a 4×4 or car its not a big deal, but as a kid the axe and my small shovel were it for implements. I just couldn’t afford the weight of a long gun, and a pistol was out of the question until later in life when I had a real job.
How do you kill things in traps you ask? You crack it in the head with the poll side of the axe. That’s the flat side opposite the edge. The side you would use as a hammer if you needed to drive a trap stake or a floating anchor. Hard. Try not to knock it out of the trap while doing it. A half dead Otter or Raccoon can rearrange important parts of your body. Remember what I said about taking my word for things? Here’s one of those.
Last item for this post
this book is awesome. I had my first copy at 8 years old and I still have a copy today. Obviously not the same one but I wont be without it.
To be continued………