As many of us know, there are several different types of preppers. But until now, the conspiracy theorists, food storage moms, and tactical tough guys have all fallen under the same label, “prepper.” This 31-question prepper quiz is where that all ends!

So… what type of prepper are you?


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The 10 Types of Preppers

Have you ever realized how many different breeds of people fall under the survival/prepping/self-sufficiency umbrella? In case you haven’t, there are tons. And each subset is unique in their own weird ways. 

Here is just a smattering of the different types of folks in our space:

Pantry Prepping Pros-these are the sweet middle aged moms who equate the idea of survival with having a basement full of canned foods (some of which they probably canned themselves). Probably also soccer moms. They know the importance of stocking those cupboards full!

Nutball Conspiracy Theorists-swear that someday soon just about everybody is going to be torched in a giant nuclear explosion, drowned in a flood, frozen to death in another ice age, or abducted by aliens. These guys are the converts of Independance day, I Am Legend, and all the other wonderful Hollywood portrayals.

Tactical Hoo-Rahs-these are the guys that treat everything like it’s the battlefield. They borrow all the acronyms, abbreviations and terminology from their military days. These guys are all about stockpiling firepower, blowing things up, and beating the bad guys.

Wood Walking Primitive Skills Afficionados-the hippies of the group. These are the folks that farmers markets are made of. They love to make their own clothes, build their own homes, grow their own food, and in all other possible ways be “at one” with our mother earth. These guys often have learned a tremendous amount about living off the land.

Camping & Hunting Nuts-LOVE spending time in the outdoors. They can’t get enough of hunting, tracking, animal calls, hiding in bushes, and analyzing poop. They like the adventure of making do and doing without, so they do it for fun. To these guys, the concept of “survival” is being alone in the wilderness.

Captain First Responders-pride themselves on being able to perform CPR, first aid, emergency surgeries, treat and dress wounds, triage the victims of mass destruction, and anything else medical. To them, the apex of “survival” is being able to put people back together.

Off-Grid Homesteaders-Unlike other survivalists, as off-grid homesteaders, you are living and breathing your “preps” every day. While the term “off-grid” could imply varying degrees of self-sufficiency, you likely have a means of providing at least some of your own energy, water, food, and sanitation needs. Living in this way lends itself to incredible resiliency, because your lifestyle doesn’t change, whether the grid goes down or not.

Right Wing Extremists-swear that the government is slowly taking away our freedoms, and that people are being led down the path of “following the system” without questioning. Everything is a conspiracy, nothing should be trusted–especially if it’s the Feds. The less government there is, the better.

Boy Scouts-are a close relative of the camping/hunting nuts. Their brand of survival is also largely “wilderness survival.” They become more “prepared” by passing off merit badges dealing with the safe and proper way of: building a fire, using a knife, making camp, disposing of waste (paper and otherwise), splitting wood, navigating by map, and more.

Doomsday Economists-these guys prophesy of the times when paper money will be completely worthless, and burnt to keep warm. They put their faith in stockpiling raw goods and precious metals. They invest in foreign markets, and keep their wealth spread around, so that it can’t be lost all at once.

I’m sure there are more, but this is just a small cross-section of some of the more prominent survival subsets that I’ve noticed. It’s eye opening because it really does illustrate how different people choose to deal with problems (or potential problems).

REAL Survival

No matter what brand of survival we are or may call ourselves, it’s important to realize that there truly are practical and absurd things about each. You can’t save a kids life with CPR if all you’ve been doing is collecting guns and blowing stuff up. And by the same token, you can have the Merck medical book memorized and still starve to death without a little food storage. Rather, learn from them all, realize the limitations and craziness inherent to each, and contribute where you can.

To sum it up–be real about the journey you are on. Because after all, it will be real soon enough some day.

It can be hard to focus on the real, when we’ve been bombarded by the surreal. But it’s important to make the distinction. For what it’s worth, I’ve developed my own personal list of things that are real, and things that are not real in survival. And I thought I’d share it with any who care to browse:

What’s Real

  • Failing economy
  • political unrest
  • natural disasters
  • emergency communications
  • storing food
  • storing water
  • sheltering in anything available
  • simplicity
  • death
  • disease
  • starvation
  • first aid
  • triage
  • CPR

What’s Not Real

  • trying to survive nuclear war
  • stockpiling dozens of guns or extravagent weaponry
  • piles of money to spend on survival gear
  • well-oiled meetup groups
  • cryogenically preseving yourself for hundreds of years, as a means of  escaping disaster (yes some people think this is the answer)
  • invincibility
  • 100% wilderness survival (no modern conveniences)
  • perfectly working stuff
  • long term bug out
  • making your house a fortress
  • planning the New World Order for when the government fails

Choose Your Own Adventure

Are you preparing for 3 days without water, or are you building a bomb shelter? Are you learning simple first aid, or are you learning how to make Napalm? Are you storing food or stocking up on grenade launchers? To be honest, I would be surprised if even half the gun nuts on Survivalist Boards have even a week’s worth of water stored.

It doesn’t have to be Armageddon for people to need food. I know several people who have eaten off their food storage during a period of unemployment. Emergency first aid situations happen ALL THE TIME–falls, car accidents, bleeding, fainting. These are moments that need heroes, and you will be ready for them.

For a lot of folks, the concept of “survival” has been watered down to nothing more than a conversation topic or a hobby. It’s becoming a club or a frat where a bunch of little boys can get together, play dress up, shoot guns, one-up each other’s war stories, and then pat themselves on the back because they know so much and are invincible.

Look, if you need an excuse to buy a bunch of expensive little gadgets and feel important about yourself, by all means go ahead. But the truth is, it’s not a club. It’s not a frat. It’s not a competition.  It’s not about whatever makes the loudest explosions, biggest flames, or best movies. It’s about solid, self-sufficient living, one day at a time, in the areas that matter most.