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Some people love to live rough in the outdoors. Their tricks can come in handy. They match wits with primitive conditions and master the art of low-tech living.

You might learn something from them. This thriving community of folks who like to tough it has an answer for every emergency occasion. If a local disaster should knock out electricity, transportation or communication lines, you’ll want to take a page from their book.

Did You Know?

3.7 M Number of Americans who consider themselves “preppers,” or survivalists, who are actively preparing for a catastrophic event.

Store Your Food Right You don’t even have to leave the house for this first tip. Many survivalists, called “preppers,” pride themselves on being totally self-sufficient. They can goods — which could come in handy when that blizzard strikes and you can’t get to the store. Buy some oxygen absorber packets online and some mason jars. Fill jars with your choice of food to be dehydrated, plunk an oxygen absorber on top, close the lid, et voila. Store in a cool dry place, and it can last five years or more.

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Eliminate (Bug) Intruders Bugs aren’t going anywhere. But survivalists have some time-tested ways to battle these naturally when the time comes. In addition to some proven wisdom, they suggest adding basil or rosemary to a fire or coals. The bugs hate the smell, and will keep their distance.

Find Your Way Have a terrible sense of direction and need to head east? If you have a needle or a small sliver of metal, rub it over a wool sweater about 100 times or on a magnet about two dozen times. This will magnetize it. Balance it on top of a leaf floating in water, and the tip will automatically point to the north.

Get in the Can Lost a can opener? There’s a clever way to get in. Simply take the can and put it upside down on any block of concrete. Rub vigorously for a few minutes. Gently but forcefully squeeze the sides near the top. The top of the can should then pop right open. Bon appetit.