Movies !

You know, there is always time and room to do new things…today is one of those times. I am going to do something I’ve never done before on this website, or anywhere else on the Internet. Over the last few weeks my wife and I just wanted to chill out on the weekend. No, not last weekend (4th of July), we were at the cabin for 5 glorious days! I will write more about that later. But, we wanted to be entertained and just relax. Movies!!

Yup, we watched three movies of particular note, and that is what I am going to tell you about right now.

Movie #1: “A Dog’s Purpose”

My wife and I love dogs…I mean we really love dogs. We think they are among some of the greatest gifts that God gave to mankind. We have two currently, and the last three have all been shelter rescue dogs.

The movie is utterly fantastic. It gives an incredible look into the interaction between dogs and people. There are some great teaching moments and more than enough emotional moments to drag a tear or two out of you. You simply have to see this movie.

Now, there are two potential controversies with this movie. #1 – Supposedly there was a scene where a dog was forced to do a stunt that was considered animal abuse. Negative. That hullabaloo was stirred up by some animal rights group. The producer went into great detail about filming the scene and in my opinion there was no, never was any, animal abuse of any kind. It was the same tired old liberal animal rights folks trying to cause trouble. #2 – The movie portrays reincarnation of a dog for multiple lives. This concept might be offensive to some religious based ideas of some folks. Please, get over it…this is a movie not a seminary class.

I can’t recommend this movie highly enough. It is wonderful! And 100% appropriate for children.

Movie #2: The Shack

This is a movie that can challenge you and move you. It did both for me. Make no doubt about it…it’s a “God movie” and a good one at that. The presentation is wonderful and so outside the box it will/may challenge you to see God in a truly wonderful light more than you ever have before.

I smiled, I shed a tear or two, was wonderfully happy, and chuckled a bit as well as I watched the movie. There are parts where you hurt for one of the characters, you cringe at a certain part, and I found myself wishing that some of it wasn’t true. But, it was a great -no, a wonderful- experience and well worth watching.

And again, if you are a religious nutcase without imagination or the capacity to understand…then this movie is not for you. If you think you know everything when it comes to religion, then do yourself a favor…don’t watch this movie.

On the other hand, if you want a moving movie experience with the capability of being touched deeply…then this is a great choice!

And please…this movie is so well done and rated for everyone…watch it with the kids!

Movie #3: Saints and Soldiers

If you like war movies and action, you will like this movie. If you like movies with a great story line, you will like this movie. If you like movies with a real hero, you will like this movie. If you like movies where the good guy wins, you will like this movie. If you like movies that the kids can watch with you, you will like this movie.

Yeah…you will like this movie. I sure did!

I can’t really share too much or I will turn into a spoiler. Bottom line, this shows how good does win over evil. If shows humanity where you think there is none. And it does it all with great acting and nail biting action.

The opening scene is a little rough for those really young kids but should be fine for anyone over 8yo.

This is a movie with heart…and valor.

Summary –

Please watch these movies. There is so much smut out there pushed by Hollywood, it is nice to see some quality movies that are well done for a change. These folks need support so the good movies keep getting produced.

While watching all three of these movies drop your guard. Open your heart. Let the spirit in. You won’t be disappointed.


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> > Ka-Bar BK-2 Knife (Becker Campanion) – Follow-Up – Update

Ka-Bar BK-2 Becker CompanionMan, I kind of hate writing this follow-up to the review I did on the KaBar BK-2 Becker Companion knife. I would suggest you read the first part of the review before reading this follow-up, everything will make more sense.

< click here to read Part #1 >

Well, let’s get the good news out there first. I was able to put a pretty decent edge on the knife. I was even able to get a decent point on it as well. It will never equal my CRKT Hissatsu. Then again, the BK-2 isn’t meant to be a high quality knife like the Hissatsu. The downside is…I had to use my new WorkSharp to get the edge on the BK-2. I can probably keep the edge on it now with just my stone but I am not sure.

Here’s the downside, remember I mentioned that the cheap plastic grips/handle on the BK-2 really, really suck? But, I was willing to keep the faith that I could turn this into a “keeper” knife with a little work and a little more money. So I ordered a pair of Micarta grips for the knife.

When they came in I loved the color, very sharp looking. But as I looked at them closely I started to be less and less impressed with their quality. But, I was going to keep an open mind.

I tested the new Micarta grips for fit and quickly realized they didn’t really fit all that well. The grips were a slightly under-sized allowing for the tine to be felt all around the edge of the grips. Now, if they had been slightly over-sized then I could have taken a very fine file and smoothed it all out to a precision fit. But that wasn’t possible, I wasn’t going to start grinding away on the tine to make it match the grips.

I was impressed with the “nut holes” on the grips, they fit the nuts perfectly and held the nuts securely in-place with no slop as I tightened the screws down.

Once I had the grips on there I felt encouraged that I was going to really like this knife. Sadly, that is just not the case. Here’s why:

  1. I don’t like the grips being undersized. I don’t like feeling the tine in my hand when I should be feeling the grips.
  2. The grips cover the glass pummel on the end of the tine. I imagine it will still work, but why cover-up a working piece of the knife.
  3. The knife still doesn’t feel balanced in my hand. It feels awkward in my hand.
  4. While the edge is sharp and the point is plenty good enough for piercing, I am not sure how long that will last.
  5. The knife is still the Jack of No Trades, and Master of None. In other words –
    • It’s not a fighting knife at all.
    • It doesn’t feel like a combat knife either.
    • It simply isn’t a good hunting knife.

So, is it a good survival knife since it is none of the above? No. Plain and simple “no.”

To me a survival knife has to be a combination of a fighting knife, a combat knife, a hunting knife, as well as having solid bushcraft characteristics. The KaBar BK-2 Becker Companion is a good bushcraft knife. But, in my opinion, it lacks any of the qualities of the other three kinds of knives. So, no, it is not a good survival knife.

If you wanted a knife to replace the KaBar BK-2 Becker Companion with extreme quality and perfection of manufacturing it would be the ESEE 5 knife. The ESEE is a little more expensive. But then again, you get a knife that is at least three times as good as the BK-2…probably more when you really look at it.

Bottom line…”Do NOT buy” the KaBar BK-2 Becker Companion knife!


Thumbs Down Review


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Ka-Bar BK-2 Knife (Becker Campanion)

Ka-Bar BK-2 Becker CompanionI was able to pick up this very heft, sturdy looking, nice profile Ka-Bar BK-2 Companion knife in used condition for a decent price. I thought it would be a great addition to my knife family and useful in one of my various bags. Or maybe just dumped into the camping supplies to be used as needed.

The specs on the knife are as follow –

Ka-Bar BK-2 Becker CampanionI finally had a little time to do some knife testing and put this in the group to tryout. Time came to pull it out and give it a try. Bummer!

Ka-Bar bk-2 becker companion is junkAs soon as I grabbed hold of it I noticed three things:

  1. The handle was loose. While it has screws that hold the handle on the tang, why was it loose to begin with? Any good knife should not end up with a loose handle period. And the screws should not back out unless you are working on the knife and unscrewing them. So this was strike one.
  2. Another thing I noticed about the handle was the handle material. It was one of the smoothest knife handles I ever held. Is that a bad thing? Of course it is. How are you going to maintain a grip on the knife it is really smooth. So I get the handle wet and it was a real pain to try and hang on to. If it was wet with body fluids from a deer or elk I can’t imagine this knife doing anything but being a slippery mess.
  3. Finally, the knife is way out of balance. It is very weighted to the cutting side of the knife. Just no offsetting weight in the handle portion.

Ka-Bar BK-2 becker companion cheap plastic handle with weak hollow spots

KaBar BK-2 low quality handle cheap plastic poor qualityI was going to say that the sheath is decent. But once I really started looking at it I noticed it is poorly designed for use on MOLLE gear but is usable enough for belt hanging. And the snap to hold it secure, redundancy, is nice. That plastic sheath material is thin and very cheap feeling. I would imagine that it will break with little effort. There are plenty of holes and slots down both sides which will make it easy to attach to gear. With all that being said, as I handle it I can’t help but get a feeling that the plastic sheath belongs more on a $19.95 knife at Walmart.

About the blade…I am not impressed with the tip, it just isn’t sharp. By my measurements the knife is almost 1-11/16″ wide. That is really wide! The first 7/8″ is the edge and then the bevel of the blade. I like the way it splits wood. I could really pound on the blade to drive it through the wood to split it. I never worried that the blade would break or bend. On the pounding side of the blade I never saw the first little ding from pounding on it. That is nice.

I am also not crazy about the edge on the knife. Yes, I bought it used but I worked on it with my diamond sharpener but never go it to a fine sharp edge. I will try to put a better edge on it with my “WorkSharp” and will let you know how that goes.

What amazes me is the 4-1/2 star rating it got on Amazon. I just don’t understand it. But something I did find interesting is the full retail price is $127. Amazon’s price is $65. almost 1/2 the full retail price. That has  to tell you something.

When I had the handles off the knife the full tang steel blade just felt like a big ole hunk of steel. There was no feel to it of being a great knife. But I am willing to see how it feels when I get some a new handle on it.

Also, due to the sheer size of the knife I don’t see it as a hunting knife. The knife is simply too large for most hunting applications. The dang knife is bigger than a squirrel and almost the weight of a rabbit. A little too much for prepping either. Also, I don’t see it as a camping knife. Again, it is simply too large and cumbersome for most camp chores, including cooking.

The only true application I see for this knife is in a survival situation. You can hack on trees and limbs all day long. You can split wood with ease. Some might refer to it as a “bushcraft” knife and I can see that as well.

So far the only really positive to this knife…I bought it used and I don’t have that much money into it. If I had bought it retail it would have been returned as soon as I got it out of the box.

I am going to try and salvage this knife. There is a knife maker in town and I am going to talk to him about fabricating a decent handle for it. I am also going to look online for a better sheath for it. I will update you if I get either of those things done.

I am pretty brutal with my expectations. This knife failed on two fronts and that earns it a “Do not buy!” I may change my opinion once I get a new handle on. I will let you know.


Thumbs Down Review


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Knife – CRKT Hissatsu

CRKT - Hissatu 2907D flat dark eartSeveral years ago I was seeking a true self-defense, or tactical, knife. A knife that I could defend myself with knowing it would accomplish that task very efficiently and effectively. Since I am no knife-fighter I started asking around of those that possess that particular skill set. My question, “What was the best self-defense knife?”

There really weren’t that many answers that varied a whole lot. What they universally did say, “Knife fighting is ugly and you are going to get hurt?” After a number of discussions I understood what they meant. I decided then to avoid knife fights.

But, I still need to possess a good knife for tactical purposes. The experts helped me narrow it down. But they also pretty much said the same thing pistol experts say when asked what is the best pistol to own. It has to “feel right” in your hand.

Of course there are some standard traits of a good tactical knife:

  • Sturdy blade that won’t break easily
  • Piercing capability
  • Sufficient cutting edge surface
  • Handle that is the right size
  • Handle that maintains grip even when wet

After doing a lot of research, testing a number of knives, and making a couple bad decisions I finally found the right hardcore tactical knife for me. It is a CRKT Hissatsu.

Here are the specs:CRKT-Hissatu-002

  • Open Overall Length:  12.25 inches
  • Blade Length:  7.125 inches
  • Thickness:  0.2 inches
  • Blade Material:  440A
  • Blade-HRC:  55-57
  • Blading Coating: titanium nitride
  • Grind:  Dual
  • Edge:  Plain
  • Handle Material:  Double Injection Glass Filled Nylon/Soft Textured Rubber Grip
  • Carry System:  Glass Filled Nylon Sheath

That knife is amazing! It fits my hand perfectly and I can move it with ease and confidence. That knife can pierce by simply setting it’s tip on something. I tested it’s puncture capability very unscientifically. I placed it on a substance that imitated human flesh. When very little pressure it pierced with ease. Next came slicing meat…again, with ease.

It takes an edge well with my diamond sharpener although I have to work at it. But, it holds an edge incredibly well. The blade is very sturdy and I have not a single concern that it will break being used as it is intended.

Yes, as you can tell, I really like that knife. And it is part of my tactical kit since 2012.

But, it does have one drawback…size. It is over 12” long, the blade is over 7” of that. In a tactical situation that is not a problem at all. You secure it to your tactical vest and you are good to go. But, trying to carry it in a non-tactical (a.k.a. civilian) setting can get you some unwanted attention.

And then there is the situation where you want an easier to access knife for close quarters battle situation. Example: You enter a room, bad guy grabs your AR that is attached to a sling, and you have to get up close and personal. It may be difficult to draw your CKRT knife in close quarters, or take too long. Having a smaller tactical knife readily available might be the logical choice. But that is another article all together.

Here is some information directly from the CRKT website –

James Williams, the designer of the Hissatsu™, is a former Army officer and martial arts practitioner/instructor with over 45 years of experience. He knows cutlery as President of Bugei Trading Company, producer of fine Samurai swords. As one who has trained tactical law enforcement and military forces for the SureFire Institute, he has developed a unique and powerful approach to unarmed combatives. His system of defensive tactics, known as The System of Tactical Strategy, has its origins in the ancient Samurai military systems as well as the Russian military art of Systema.

CRKT - Hissatu 2907D flat dark eartA key part of this system is the Hissatsu based on an old Japanese design. The unique shape of the blade, made famous by the legendary Samurai warlord Takeda Shingen, provides enormous penetrating power and superior slashing capability in one blade, which works with the natural motion of the body. James arrived at this modern version as a backup weapon for close-quarters combat. This is a focused single-purpose knife for use in anti-terrorist/close-quarters battle (CQB) environments, either as a primary or a secondary weapon to augment the handgun in the hands of trained professionals.

The Hissatsu’s dual grind Tanto blade is 440A stainless steel, high satin finished. For those who prefer a non-reflective finish, the Hissatsu is available with a black EDP blade or in Desert Tan dress with titanium nitride blade coating.

The handle is in a traditional Japanese pattern, but is Twin-Fused™, double injection-molded with a high-impact polypropylene core, butt and hilt, and a non-slip soft textured rubber grip handle surface. Oyatsubo, the emperor node on the omote (outside/public side) of the tuska (handle), allows you to know which direction the blade is facing, even in compromised lighting conditions, by touch.

The custom injection-molded glass filled nylon sheaths (in matching black, Desert Tan or blue) grip the knife firmly, and have removable belt clips which can be attached high or low, vertical or horizontal with the black two-piece screws provided. There are also holes and slots for carry on belts, webbing or equipment.

The Hissatsu is intended for use only by trained law enforcement and military tactical team professionals. Enormous power in a light, flat package makes for easy carry with many options for placement on tactical gear.

Know that the CKRT Hissatsu is an excellent choice, my choice, for a tactical self-defense fixed blade knife. It is in every way a “BUY!”

Buy It !

OK, so now here is the downside…please don’t hate me…the knife is no longer in production, CRKT discontinued making them. The good news is they are still out there to be bought. If you want a desert sand color you have to go to eBay. They only show up occasionally. For Black you can get them on Amazon.

Amazon - CRKT Hissatu 2709 knifeNow a really cool thing…there is a “training blade” version. These are great to train with. No rubber blade crap, the trainer version is dull aluminum. This trainer blade gives you a great opportunity to train like you will fight.

CRKT - Hissatu 2709 blue training knife


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The Cave by Snugpak: The tent I’ve always wanted! (Part #1)

Snugpak 4 person tent The CaveThey’ve done it again! As you well know by reading my review of The Bunker by Snugpak, I absolutely love that tent. The Bunker is made just as its name implies, rock solid quality. There was only one drawback…the size.

For most people The Bunker would be perfectly sized, same would be true for me if I didn’t like to use an air mattress. However, a bad back from being broken a couple times makes an air mattress almost a requirement for me to get a good night’s sleep. All that plushness made The Bunker a bit tight, space wise. Now, add my wife into the mix and The Bunker just didn’t work. The answer…The Cave!

So, remember how kids behave on Christmas morning? Sometimes Christmas Eve? You know, all wanting to get into their presents and being super excited? How do you think I felt when Snugpak shipped The Cave to me?

But first, information straight from their website –

The Cave 4-Man Tent from Snugpak is the ultimate 4-person tent! This all-new 4-person tent features durable Flysheet Polyester RipStop construction with a 5000mm waterproof polyurethane coating that can handle large amounts of rainfall. Other innovative features include five vents, taped seams, a fixed ground sheet and No-See-Um Mesh to keep the insects out. The Cave is comfortable and spacious enough for four people, with two doors for easy entering and exiting. Includes a Basic Repair Kit.

  • Flysheet is lightweight 210ft Polyester RipStop pu with a 5000mm waterproof polyurethane coating
  • Inner tent constructed of 190ft nylon with 50D Polyester No-See-Um-Mesh
  • DAC Featherlite NSL anodized TH72M aluminum poles with pressfit connectors
  • Includes 25 Alloy Stakes and a Basic Repair Kit
  • All seams are taped sealed
  • Features 2 Doors
  • 18″L x 8″D packsize

information on Snugpak The CaveOK, now back to the review…

I am sitting there Wednesday evening, still recovering from a little bout with a stomach bug when the UPS driver shows up. The dogs went a bit wild barking and defending the house from the potential threat of the UPS driver. I am hollering at them to be quiet and they are trying to eat through the door. Yeah, a great scene to be proud of.

Fast forward just a bit…I get The Cave out of the box and first thing I notice is its weight. This is not a backpacking tent; maybe a mule or horse packing tent, but not a backpacking tent. At least not for me. But that is NOT the mission of this tent to begin with. So let me back up a little and state the mission of this tent…

“Provide shelter for two people, one dog, and limited amount of gear in four-season conditions, including winds of up to 60mph.”

click for larger view

click for larger view

Now that the mission is defined let me continue the review in relation to the tent’s mission. Also, it might be beneficial for you to read the original review of The Bunker before continuing reading this review. < click here to read the review on The Bunker tent by Snugpak >

I got the tent out of the box and noticed its weight. Since this is not meant to be a backpacking tent I was impressed with its relatively light weight. And I also noticed immediately the “tactical color” scheme. Nice!

Yup, I am not a florescent orange or lime green kind of tent guy. If I need a bright color to find my tent I have much bigger problems and issues to deal with. I am a “blend-in-to-the-environment” kind of guy. I will show you some great pictures on that a little later.

I also noticed that the seams were well sewn and taped against water leakage. Actually, the sewing throughout the tent was very high quality, all seams taped and the tent is obviously built to a high standard.

All the strapping is just as solid and just as high quality, right down to the brass grommets. In line with the high quality construction tradition of Snugpak, The Cave rates right up there at the top.

So, it is dark outside, I am still a little sick, the temperature outside is dropping, so what is a man to do now? Yup, exactly! I set up the tent in the spare bedroom. But, the rest of the review is a combination of spare-bedroom and back-yard experience and comments.

Unlike The Bunker, The Cave is not a “fly-first” tent. That is OK with me, I’m not tied to the whole “fly-first” concept.

click for larger view

click for larger view

Traditional tents are just fine with me. I am laying out the tent and I am impressed with the foot print, this is a sizeable tent…just what I wanted!

I got is all squared up and ready for the poles…all 5 of them. Yeah, 5 poles…I got confused. Maybe I should have read the instructions.

Speaking of the instructions…Sungpak is ahead of the curve once again. Snugpak provides pretty simple instructions on paper (not really the right term for the material) that resists destruction as well as rain. I am thinking something along the lines of a direct nuclear hit would be required to destroy the instruction sheet. Nice job Snugpak…you guys think of everything.Snugpak The Cave 4 man tent 4 person tent

I read the instructions and realize there are three sets of poles. One set of two poles for the main support of the tent. Another set of poles to push the tent out to its full size and tautness. And these poles are easy to identify based on the color coordination between the pole color and the color of the pole sleeve that they go into. Once again…Snugpak thinking it through like a user, not a designer or engineer.

In go the first two poles, then the last two poles. The tips of each pole fit correctly and properly into the grommets on the straps at the corners and in the middle of the tent edges. I love the way they’ve designed the poles, the ends of the poles actually stick in the strap grommets without having to hold them in-place. That really helps when you Snugpak The Cave tentare putting the tent up by yourself.

As a side note, the poles are extremely high quality and slide right into each other with ease. The metal feels like it is strong as it would ever need to be.

All four poles in-place and up went the tent. Nice! Sweet! The tent is considerably bigger than The Bunker…and that is exactly what I wanted to see.

I couldn’t contain myself, I had to get inside of that tent. As I unzipped the door I noticed that it has the same system as The Bunker. It is actually a two-part door systems with a high-quality piece of material and a separate insect screen door. The insect screen door is really nice when you want some breeze flowing through the tent but no mosquitoes…not even “no-see-ums” can get through that mesh!

4-person tent The Cave by SnugpakSnugpak The Cave doorsDoor open…climb inside. Wow! This tent is spacious! I love the size!

The first thin I do is lay down. And there is room to spare. Now, if you look at the picture that shows how The Cave 4 person tent 4-man tentis a four person tent, I have to laugh. It shows for sardines laying shoulder-to-ankles. Well, actually it looks more like four mummies in a tomb. I can’t imagine anyone sleeping like that in a tent. But stranger things have happened.

OK, back to the floor space…The Cave is spacious! And of course what was the next thing I did? Yup! I called to my wife to come into the spare bedroom.

As she came around the corner and through the door I could hear that telltale exhale…I had taken over her spare bedroom once again. The last project was re-outfitting the radio cache. And the spare bedroom bed still has a medical kit contents strewn around. Being my wife has a whole set of special challenges as you can well imagine.

She humored me and climbed into the tent and laid down next to me. And here is a huge compliment to Snugpak…she said, “Nice, I like it.”

Now look, that is a really big deal. My wife is not a tent fan by any stretch of the imagination but she liked The Cave. She left, to go back to doing something…probably watching HGTV looking for my next project. She left me laying there in the tent.

I started looking around the tent and realized that I could see through the tent material. Not just see through the vent opening, but actually see through the tent material. Now that is different!

But, back to the vents first. The tent vents are four strategically placed to allow for nice cross-ventilation. Later I tent vents ventingfound that those vents line-up perfectly with the rainfly vent openings. The vents in the tent use a sturdy no-see-em sized screen. This ensures that you aren’t getting any little insects coming in through the screening. Same is true for the screen “door” material. Both vents and door are made with 50D Polyester No-See-Um-Mesh Mosquito Net.

Back to the tent material. Although thin enough to be semi-transparent the material is still tough as heck. It is very durable material and I have no doubt can handle rough treatment. Well, short of trying to cut it with a knife.

The floor material is thicker and tougher than the wall material…as it should be. I still wouldn’t use the tent without a stout ground cloth underneath it. But that is true with any tent, at any time, in any location. Then tent floor wraps up the sides to help resist water encroachment. Nice!

While I am looking around the tent I realize that I have plenty of head room in the tent. No, I can’t stand up, but I tent headroom to stand upwasn’t expecting to and I don’t need to, The Cave is not intended to be used for that purpose. But, the inside height of the top of the tent allows for more than adequate room to move around without rubbing my head on the top.

I also noticed that even with my wife in the tent with me, there would have been plenty of room for our two beloved dogs. I’m glad The Cave didn’t force me into making that decision…it would have been a tough one. My wife would not have enjoyed sleeping outside the tent.

That is my way of saying that there is plenty of room inside the cavernous The Cave tent (pun intended). But, there is a bonus room! But let’s talk about the rainfly for a minute first.

I decided to put the rainfly on the tent to see how it fit. Once again…wow!

It fit exactly as you would expect on a high-quality 4-season tent. It came down low, almost to the ground but allowed for plenty of ventilation to move between the fly and the tent. And yes, you want that air movement, even when it is cold. Just remember, no tent is going to keep you warm. Well, if it has a stove it can keep you “warmer” but that is another story altogether.

If the weather is hot there will air movement throughout the tent just using the vents. If it is pouring rain outside, you will still get good air movement without getting rain inside the tent. If it is howling wind in a blinding snowstorm you will be able to close down the vents and there will minimal air movement in your tent.

SnugpakTheCave-016But what if you want a whole lot of air movement?

Ah yes, that is a great question. And the answer is just a great. The Cave has two doors to it, both the same size. And they are located on opposite sides of the tent. That means you can open both doors, leaving the insect screening door closed, open both doors of the rainfly and you are set with maximum air flow through the tent. I love it! I love it Especially since I live in the desert southwest.

air flow through the Snugpak The Cave tentSo here is the door layout…

double doors for snugpak the caveWhy is this important?  Notice the “double-door” has a flatter face to it? The single-door is more pointed. If I were setting-up camp and expecting high winds, rain, or snow I would would put the “single-door” more pointed end in the direction that the wind was going to come from. That would break the wind around the tent better than the flat/blunt end of the tent.

OK, now back to the “bonus room”…

Remember I mentioned that there were 5 poles?

Four poles go into the tent sleeves for support, the fifth is for the rainfly. And the part of the rainfly that gets that pole is the vestibule. It extends part of the rainfly out to add 16 additional square feet under roof!

Snugpak The Cave has a 16 square foot vestibuleYup, for those of you that do a lot of tent camping you know that is a great place to put boots and other gear that normally take up tent floor space. But now, you can put that gear, especially your boots, outside of the tent but they’re still under roof so dew, rain, or snow won’t bother them. Since my ground cloth extends out that much, I wouldn’t hesitate to put my pack out there as well. The vestibule is another great feature to this feature-rich tent.

And not to be left out…the other end of the tent has about 6 square feet under roof as well. Not near as much functionality as the vestibule, but every little bit counts!

Note: I could enter the tent through either set of doors without getting on my hands and knees. Nice!

In Part #2 I will compare The Cave right next to The Bunker to get a side-by-side comparison of the two tents.

In Part #3 I am going to head out to one of my favorite desert locations and put up the tent. Then I will experiment with different types of camo tarps and shading material. I want to see if I can get the tent to turn invisible. And I want to see if I can realistically use shade material to make the tent usable during the day out in the desert. Yeah, Amazon - Snugpak - The CaveI know, tall order. Possibly an unrealistic expectation. But a guy has got to try, right?


If you just can’t resist and want to buy the tent now :

Series Articles –
  • Snugpak – The Cave: Part #1
  • Snugpak – The Cave: Part #2
  • Snugpak – The Cave: Part #3
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Latest comments on My Journal books series…

My Journal - Surviving the Collapse Book Review7/20/2015 – UT : I just finished Book 1. Holy Cow!!! Thanks for keeping me awake BOOK: My Journal : Surviving the Collapse by AH Trimblemost of the night! I actually purchased your book over a month ago and struggled with the diary format at first. I had actually put it away after reading for about 20 minutes, but decided to give it a second try this weekend. I am so glad I did!!! I really got into it once I got accustomed to your writing style/format. I will order your next book. Now I am hooked!!! How many books will there be in this series?


7/21/2015 – Happy Valley : Another reading marathon and I am almost through your second book. I know that I My Journal - Going Homehave to carve out large amounts of time because I have such a hard time putting it down once I start.

My comments so far: Very well done on how you weave current events, human nature, and spirituality into your stories. I have to keep reminding myself that I am reading fiction… or am I?

It is a rollercoaster ride as I read through the victories and defeats (both personal and macro).  I plan on sharing this with members of my family who immediately put up defenses if they think it is a religious-based book. I think it will plant seeds to have deeper discussions.

P.S. I hope you end up in the same place as me


6/24/2015 – TK : I read the story originally online and loved it. When your books came out I bought several and have been sharing them with friends. It’s almost like you knew what would be happening in today’s world…I would call that being inspired. Your books have helped me and now my friends are enjoying the experience also. Thank you.

auntdooey says: June 21, 2015 at 12:19 am
Just finished book 1. its after 1 am or I would start book 2. Very well written and kept my interest as well as learning a few new things and ideas for my own prepping. I am going to recommend this to all my prepper friends. this is very realistic to what could happen shortly.

auntdooey says:  June 23, 2015 at 5:41 pm
Book 2 now finished! I cried even though I knew how it would end. I love that TJ finished up the journal. I was very touched by the whole story I think because I share the deep love for this country and the despair of where it is now. I know the Lord is in charge and has a plan but it is still hard to watch what is happening. I had no problem believing how quickly things went downhill. I have read several “Last Days” novels but i think these are going to be my favorites and will be read several times.

I am very impressed with your knowledge and abilities and I think you should definitely write a prepper’s manual. I know i kept copying ideas and products into a word document so I could go back and look at them for myself and check out the products. I appreciated the lessons learned by the group as they worked at survival.

Now I look forward to going thru the info on your website.
thanks so much for writing these books.

Sparkle says: June 10, 2015 at 7:00 pm
Wow! It was almost as if I was right there with Tim, Lara and the group as I was reading My Journal. Thank you for sharing your insight and obvious experience as a well-trained and prepared Prepper. I am looking forward to Book Two and I do hope that Betty has the opportunity to give the invitation for Tim and Lara to come to St George.

Leveda says: March 15, 2015 at 11:06 am 
I loved this book and could hardly put it down.Stayed up late reading it. IT rang true and I feel this is a pretty good picture of what awaits us in the not too distant future. Liked the prepping info. the whole thing felt so real, it was like being there and feeling what it would feel like in the various situations. If an experienced person would feel those feelings, I can imagine what it will be like for someone who is inexperienced and who thinks they have it all together. There will be a lot of unglued folks running around. May God help us all!

< for more information on My Journal book series click here >

BOOK: My Journal : Surviving the Collapse by AH Trimble   My Journal - Going Home




A shameless plug for my book! But hey, the guy liked it :)

My Journal - Surviving the Collapse Book ReviewBOOK: My Journal : Surviving the Collapse by AH TrimbleReview by: Ron L – 5/14/2015


I finished your first book a few days ago but haven’t had the time to let you know what I thought of it. 
After seeing the name of the book I remembered looking into getting it to read a while back. The fact that it is made up of journal entries, had turned me off, so I never read it. I don’t like reading journal entry stories or books. Just seemed to be “we did this” and I did that”. 
How wrong I was. I really enjoyed your book once I got started on it. It really didn’t seem like a collection of journal entries. The more I read the more I was enjoying the read. As I got towards the end, I started slowing down because I didn’t want it to be finished, and it was a big letdown when I had to close the book on the last page. I am very much looking forward to your next installment, and even more of the series after that.
Thank you for a good read. 
You probably limited your readership by making the hero a member of the church [The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints], but I felt right at home. The church has a tendency to ‘teach’ the aggressiveness out of it’s members, so when Tim becomes the ‘go to’ man I was a happy camper. I’m not sure that all the members of the church will understand about tent cities and helping other members passing through on the way to the gathering, but some will. I had an older sister ask me to come over to her house and explain to her what the term ‘tent city’ meant, after she had heard it from a co-worker. I’m not 100% sold on the concept myself, but at least if the need comes up I will know how to respond. 
Anyway, good book and I am looking forward to your next one.”
I sure do appreciate hearing back from folks like Ron who have read my book. Makes it worthwhile knowing that I am touching some people out there. If you haven’t yet read it, you might find yourself enjoying it. It draws you into the story. Some have commented that it becomes hard to tell the difference between the book and reality of present day. Book #2 – My Journal: Going Home, is due out next month. I will announce it here on the website when it is available.

If you want to purchase it from Amazon <click here>

If you want to know more about the book <click here>