Water is the most crucial thing in the arid southwest. You turn off the tap (earthquake), and folks will be dying within days! If you don't live in the desert, you will have difficulty comprehending a situation where there exist few if any rivers or streams to fall back on for an emergency water supply. You break the water mains supplying water from outside, and down the powerlines so there isn't any way to pump groundwater wells anymore, and it's all over. Plus, no water to fight fires....so brushland, forests, and whole neighborhoods burn on and on.
The climate cycles about every 10 years. There will be a series of about 5 dry years, followed by a series of 5 wet years. Last winter was happily very unusually wet....
For me personally, the most important 'survivalist' thing that I do is live at the base of a large mountain range (~12,000'), that gets lots of snow (10-20 feet some years)! Even in the dry years, there are always flowing streams and springs that can be relied on, if the municipal water supply fails. This is what 'preparedness' is in the desert!
Last edited by off road; 08-26-2011 at 04:16..