Considerations for SHTF Living & Bug Out Locations

by | May 3, 2011 | Emergency Preparedness | 64 comments

Do you LOVE America?


    Editor’s note: If you are not yet in the location you want to be if the S were to hit the fan, and are currently looking for either a home or raw land, then we recommend that you also read What Is The Best Place To Live In The United States To Prepare For The Coming Economic. The opinions expressed below are a supplement to that article.

    If insulating yourself from a worst-case scenario is your primary concern then the following considerations, some of which were mentioned in the article above, could help you to better decide what to do next:

    • Stay out of the cities: This is without a doubt the top concern when looking at the possibility of an economic collapse or other disaster scenario. You’re likely better off taking your chances in the middle of the wilderness than you are staying in an urban center. You’ll be dealing with packs of wild animals in both scenarios, but at least you would have a chance at acquiring some food, water and shelter. Of course, we’re not recommending that you make the wilderness your bug-out plan, but rather, are pointing out that cities will be hit extremely hard, and millions of people will be in need of food, gas, clean water, medicine and other supplies. In an all-out collapse, similar to that described by James Rawles in his book Patriots, the grid would go down, transportation systems would come to a halt and urban areas, including suburban areas, would become war zones as individuals, gangs and clans would compete for the last remaining resources. When you think major city and SHTF, think Hurricane Katrina, but on a regionalized scale affecting tens of millions of people.
    • Don’t plan on living in the wild: While the wilderness may seem like a much better option than the inner city or suburbia, you’re not the only one who’s thought of it. Only experienced outdoors men should even consider living in the wild as a primary back-up for a collapse event. Like the cities, it will only be a matter of time before competition for resources reaches a boiling point. Unless you’re one-hundred or more miles from any major human access points, you’re going to come across others who are looking for food, water, shelter, clothing and supplies. Depending on where you are in the country, the elements may become just as dangerous as gangs in the city. Without the proper equipment, you’d probably have a better chance of surviving an inner city meltdown then you would freezing temperatures in the north / north-west part of the US. If the wilderness is your plan, do you have a plan for staking and defending a piece of land for you and your family? And are you prepared to evade and/or deal with the golden horde that will eventually makes it way from the cities?
    • How close is your support network? If you plan on relocating, are family members and like-minded friends within a tank of gas to your new location? While an SHTF location 400 miles outside of a major city is a great idea, if your plan is to have just you and your immediate family of 2 to 5 people defending the land you may run into problems. Regardless of how many guns or how much ammo you have, coordinated attacks by gangs or the possibility of being overrun by those who managed to make it to rural areas should be a consideration. Also, looking at the location of your home town and the reality of coordinating with neighbors and city officials to stop non-residents from entering a particular area would be prudent. A support network on a familial and community level will be critical if you are near any population centers, even if your town is only made up of a few thousand people. Primarily, your immediate team is of the most concern – keeping 24 hour watch and working the land will be critical, and you’re going to need more than just a few people to do this effectively.
    • Is your new place to live capable of going off-grid for extended periods?We’re not just talking about electricity – but water and food as well. Electricity and gas power are important, but not as important as your immediate needs like food, water, shelter and defense. With the right people by your side, your defense capabilities should be significantly enhanced. But if the grid goes down, how will you manage? Will there be fresh water available from a well or stream? What if someone dams your stream up river? Is there enough arable land to produce food – and enough water to keep it alive? Remember, the food you need will not be just for you, but for the animals you might be raising. Do you have reserve feed for those animals, or do you plan on feeding them off the land?
    • Location. Location. Location. The above article pointed out that coastal areas could be deadly – for a number of reasons. If you’ve read any historical doomsday theories, you’re likely familiar with the statistic that some 90% of the world’s population lives within a hundred miles of an ocean. Bad news if the earth ever decides to sneeze. That, and the fact that those areas become major targets in the event of war or wide-scale terrorism. The east coast of the US, especially, would be dangerous simply because of the number of people. Even if you aren’t directly on the coast, golden horde migrations will overrun hundreds of thousands of acres of land during evacuations or panics. The west coast would experience similar effects. From the south, as the article mentions, there is the real possibility of mass migrations and violence – it’s no secret that certain lines of thoughts suggest the southern US belongs to Mexico – so be prepared for an onslaught if you are anywhere within several hundred miles of the southern border. During any such mass migrations, any easy to traverse land masses will be subject to disturbances and only those in remote or difficult to reach locations will go unscathed. If it even exists, the SHTF protection zones, in general, seem to be the central United States regions – this includes flat lands and mountainous regions, stretching from northern Texas up towards the Dakotas and west towards Idaho. Parts of northern California, Oregon and Washington also qualify. There is, of course, the possibility that some natural events – Yellowstone comes to mind – could wreck havoc, but other than that, the right piece of property in these areas could be your best bet to survive a whole host of end of America scenarios. This is not to say that areas outside of this zone are unsafe, as we are speaking more in regional generalities here. Ideally, you want to be out of the migration path of the horde, preferably on higher ground in the mountains, or a good distance from any major or high trafficked roadways if you’re living on flat land.One rule of thumb would be to look at how far away a major city is from your location. If tens of thousands of people live within a gas tank of that location, you can expect unfriendly visitors.
    • Hideaway, safe room, bunker. We may be getting into  tin-foil prepping here, but we’ll mention it anyway. Mass migrations are going to be of critical concern in ANY collapse scenario. Even those in a fairly poor location can still have a back up plan. Our advice: If you have the ability to do so, do what the government plans on doing, and go underground. Find property with a basement, or an old mine or cave, anything that is out of sight. If the horde comes your way this would become your new bug-out location. In such a scenario, one may need to disappear for an extended period, so quick-food considerations, water storage, and sanitation become important. Plan on 15 – 30 days at a minimum if you’ve got to go “underground.” There’s no sense in fighting if you can get out of the way and let the horde Tsunami pass over you and eventually recede.

    As preppers, we all want to say we’re prepared for anything, but a good prepper knows his or her limitations. It is impossible to plan for every potential scenario, but staying flexible and open-minded is going to be critical for survival. A willingness to admit, contemplate and act on weaknesses in your preparedness plan is of utmost importance.


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      1. There is NO WAY the “common man (person)” will ever survive a collapse described in both these articles.

        Migration? Only the strong will make this trip. We all know most Americans are overweight and over 50yrs of age. Think baby boomers.

        The possibility of “gangs” is the biggest threat. You’d have to be lucky enough that no-one would come where you’re located. If they did, it would be nice to have booby traps set up to mane or kill intruders. It’ll be a great accomplishment if you were able to kill a dozen gang members and stop them from harming you and others. (as I dream on)

        It’s hard to even imagine it will even come to this, but that’s what everyone thought about the booming housing market and ended up losing all their retirement, family and in some cases lives.

        It definitely is hard to prepare for every scenario.

        It would be nice if all of us like minded preppers could join forces, but unfortunately that’s impossible, we don’t know each other (who’s weak, who’s strong) and I only trust those who’ve I known for decades.

        Be ready, be flexible, be prepared and you’ll manage.

        I hope this all works out for all of us!!! God Bless!

      2. I picked my “bug out” location 30 years ago…..long before I ever heard that term, or understood the implications of it…..and then moved there.  Ex-army, I saw the ‘lay of the land’ from that viewpoint and liked what I saw.  Secluded valley in TN, surrounded by mountains, with only two roads in/out… over a gap at the head of the valley, the second out the other end, following a narrow roadway along the creek that drains the watershed.  The gap road passes thru 6 miles of national forest with no private property, and would be easily blocked by a few hours of chainsaw work.  ( and in fact, HAS been blocked by nature in various storms over the years, for up to a month ! )  The lower road, easily blocked/gated/at a natural choke point where the mountains come down to the creek.  Vehicle traffic could be virtually eliminated within a few hours, and controlled by a few people.  While walk in traffic can’t be controlled, they would have to climb up and back down a lot of mountain rise on each side on foot, meaning most likely, bandits would simply fan out to other targets of easier opportunity.  This place simply screams “naturally defensive terrain”.
        That leaves the valley itself, and it’s residents.  Fortunately, there is no public water line up here.  That tends to limit the volume of residents, to those with the resources to drill a well, or as time has gone on with extended families, those willing to share a water source.  While we do have some that are dependent on the govt hand for their incomes, most folks here work somewhere else ( a few are self employed in the valley…car repair shop, welding shop, etc ), many farm as a side line.  Most garden…many heat with wood….and so on.
        I’ve gotten to know the neighbors, and some of us have talked about the future, to the point of forming a “neighborhood watch”, ( a call to the county sheriff’s dept is usually followed by a 30min delay in response in good times) and discussing how things will be handled “should the day come”. We are on the same page when it comes to stocking up preps, firearms and so on.  While at this point, it’s still a very loose organization, at least the groundwork has been laid for a real community organization to form should it ever become needed.  We are to the point now of forming “rules” on allowing extended family/friends from outside to come in once the roads are closed.  That has made for some interesting discussions.
        I hope none of this ever has to be put into play, personally, I like being able to go to town for a pizza occasionally, and hardware stores are wonderful, but hopefully, I’ve picked the right location for me and mine, and done enough to insure we have a fair shot at making it in case things change for the worse.

      3. The first wave to try leave the city is doomed. My plan is to survive in the appartment along with my family, with doors locked.
        Good defence means and preparations have already been made.
        If the shit continues, we will risk to drive to the country.
        By the way, Greece is “boiling”. The fascist-socialist puppet government is losing control. They are taking desperate tax measures. The daily economy is fucked up. The main road which leads from down-town Heraklion up to Knossos archaelogical site, is full of closed shops and companies.
        Now they are discussing to cut the unemployment benefits. It will be given depending on wealth criteria. For example if you are unemployed but the house is yours, benefits finito, caput, bye-bye.
        Don’t worry dear citizen; you can always eat the carpets, the walls, the roof, the toilet. If digestion is diffcult, we provide sodas.
        Be safe everybody. I only wish i lived there and, as Man Up says, to join forces with you.

      4. Good stuff from TnAndy.
        I see one problem. Depedence on chainsaw. Once the lines of communications fail, do you really want to consume what limitted supplies of gasoline on a chainsaw? You can still buy cross-cut saws. Learn to use them and sharpen them. While your at it, learn how to use a file correctly so to extend its useful life-span. Forget a bow saw for anything larger than about 3″ diameter. If you are gonna depend on an axe, you have screwed the pooch. I have hundreds if not thousands of hours experience with axes/pulaskis. Good tool, but highly specialized for efficient usage.

        No matter where you go, never forget your survival is completely dependent upon energy; human, electricity and fuel. Always conserve the electricty and fuel. Use human energy whenever possible. Hard physical work builds hard-bodies. Never expend energy for marginal gains. Think profit-loss. Spending 3000 calories to gather 300 calories of food is idiocy. Having used animals for an energy source, I will state that it is a fools game unless your animal’s feed issue is no problemo. Small livestock in a breeding sized population has an upside, but there is still the feed issue. Banty chickens are a great choice. Just water them with snow during freezing weather; never water unless you wanna see them lose feet, wattles and life.
        Though I have active volcanoes and fault lines fairly close, I won’t and don’t worry about what I can’t predict. Like everyone else, I will have absolute security once I’m in the grave. Til then I won’t worry about earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, tsunamis or violent weather. I live and enjoy my meager lifestyle. I have dear friends that welcome my visits. Not saying I don’t prep for the above anomalies, but rather I refuse to worry about what might or might not occur.
        My only tangible concern is the rise of communitarianism. I and mine are not a community asset available upon demand by the grasshoppers. I support the Anti-Communitarian League and its efforts to demonstrate that the newest wave of thieves is supported by the public-private partnership. Odd how the public gains the profits and the private sector pays the bills.
        To quote Bobby McFarrin, “Don’t worry, be happy.” Plan, prep, but don’t forget to grab happiness and joy along the way.

      5. The answer to this question has become exponentially problematic…

        Scientist: Radiation In US Food Will Be Nationwide Problem, Not Just Regional, From Fukushima Nuclear Radioactive Fallout

        Environmental scientist and professional engineer Marco Kaltofen says in ongoing analysis of the nuclear radioactive fallout from Fukushima that radiation in US food will be a nationwide problem and not just a regional one.

        For those who aren’t familiar with the video producer, Fairewinds has gained quite a reputation for producing candid, accurate and reliable video updates of the Fukushima crisis without sensationalism hyping up the crisis, nor do they downplay situation.


      6. OTE and TnAndy: Good stuff! It’s likely that the mobility of the “golden hordes” will be limited depending on the SHTF scenario. I don’t see people walking far and gasoline could become scarce in a hurry, limiting their ability to “forage”. So your BOL locations are probably good.

        Manos: I disagree with your idea that the  “first wave to try to leave the city is doomed”. If someone lives in a city and plans to “escape” to a bug out location, I think FIFO is the key to survival.

        When the BIG ONE hits LA: LV, PHX, & SLC will be inundated with refugees. I would want to be at the head of the crowd with a better chance to gas up somewhere else once I got there.

        The best idea is to be there if you want to get there. 

      7. Durango Kid,
        I see your point.
        My objection is that since we don’t have an actual time of an event, most people will flee cities as soon as shtf, all together.
        Heraklion is a small city of 150.000 people. But could you imagine all L.A. residents trying to exit the city?
        If you’re lucky enough to be at the head of the convoy, it’s fine.
        From the other side you’re right because we are prepared. You’ll grab your stuff and drive, whereas all others will try to load all kinds of weird crap in their vehicles.
        In any case be safe

      8. “A pint of sweat is worth a gallon of blood.”

        TnAndy- sounds like he has his shit wired tight.

      9. Over the last couple, three years some interesting statistics have been posted. In reading these keep in mind that homo sapiens is a creature of habit and rarely breaks with their habits.

        35% of Americans have never be outside their home town.
        65% have never been outside their home state.
        50% live within 50 miles of where they were born.

        To quote Henry David Thoreau, “The masses of men lead lives of quiet desperation.” Most will eagerly remain in-situ and expect the PTB to save their asses. Oh yes, there will be outbreaks of violence and some percentage will move into the countryside to cause problems. But not beaucoup millions. Always remember the concept of hometown advantage. How many will leave what they know and venture into the great unknown?

        Still eternal vigilance is mandatory. Statistics can NEVER be applied to individuals. There hasn’t yet been one identified case of a family with 2.2 children.

        • yes its true i’ve lived in iowa ok. calif. the people i’ve met in all these area’s have not been out of there state. most have not lived beyond the 50 miles from home. so i think alot will stay put & try to dig in.

      10. The problem I have with some of the suggestions is that, on a daily basis, it is very difficult to live far enough away from a metropolitan area in order to have a place that will be safe from migrating humans in a SHTF scenario and still be able to earn a living every day before the time the “s” hits the fan.  The ultimate plan, is of course, to have somewhere to go that is fully paid for.  But in this economy, who has that kind of money?

      11. After reading both articles (and many like it), I think I’ll stick with the Upper Midwest. Northern climates make me happy, with all the water, forest, animals, and deathly cold winters and scorching summers.

        Joe six-pack or Samantha Sheeple living up North after the SHtF? NOT going to happen. If they can make the journey up North in Spring or Fall when the temps aren’t at one extreme or the other without starving, dehydrating or death due to others fleeing, odds are they would die of heat stroke during the summer or freeze to death during the winter.

        The Upper Midwest is not the place for anyone who wants to survive and is not used to hard work or the environment. Living in this area requires what my Grandparents called grit. So Joe and Samantha who already live in this region (and most are more than a little bit soft and squishy) will perish as quickly and easily as their big-city counterparts -especially if they actually have to do anything physical. I have met these people, they break out in a sweat just THINKING about taking one flight of stairs to the second floor. So even though easy-living high-paying jobs are hard to come by, I love the Upper Midwest.

      12. Overtheedge:
        Yep…..I agree with you on the saws/axes….and the files and teeth setting tools as well.  Have those, and have used all of them.  The chainsaw would be simply a matter of expediency for the situation, though I also store a fair amount of gasoline ( and diesel and kero ) in drums with PRI.  I keep enough diesel to run my tractor for many, many years and even my garden tiller has an 8hp air cooled diesel on it.  Electricity is covered with a 5.6kw solar power system, that will produce 32kw/hrs on a good day…..plenty enough for some refrigeration, lights and tool use.
        Next on my learning curve is wood gas generation, and a good alcohol still. ( plenty of local talent for that last one….ahahaaa)
        Given a fair amount of thought to animal feed too.  We have a fair amount of hay grown in the valley now, and could expand acres to include OP corn, ( I already grow Hickory King for feed ) oats.  I’ve got 3 test plots out this spring of amaranth and quinoa, both of which are high protein grains that will grow on marginal lands.  Growing them doesn’t seem to be a problem, they are up and looking good, but I’m really curious on how hard they are to harvest and thresh out.  I’ll know this fall.

        • to tenn andy, wgat is ur weather like in winter & summer? i’m in ok now its been in the 100’s for wks i dont want to be here when shtf.are people friendly to new people there?

      13. I’m already there. I’m on 30 acres with trees, coal and a creek that runs even in the dryest weather. Within 1/2 mile I have my elderly parents who still maintain their own place, a brother and his family and 10 other residences that I have known the occupants for no less than 10 years. Of the dozen or so residences that are here, 8 of them are gun owners and/or hunters and or gardeners. …and I’m 1700 feet off the road, pretty much in the middle of my 30 acre patch. Honestly, I wasn’t thinking SHTF when I did all this. I was thinking “I want it this way…”  Of the 30 acres, about 10 or 12 of it is tillable.
        Its so tempting. If I really knew what the timetable was there are some of you I’d invite to come out. WTSHTF it would be nice to have people around willing to do the hard work with me. I’ve thought about building “shacks”. 8×12 sheds, insulated with a sink, a potty and a hotplate and a microwave and 8, 4×8 raised beds. Also a small wood stove. Nothing fancy but surely better than many of you will have if TSHTF.
        Over on, there are many of us that are contemplating such things. That time is not yet here but many of us feel it is close.
        My parents and one neighbor have the prepper bug. One neighbor says she’s got enough food to last a year without doing a thing. …and thats something!!! They have 8 kids. …but also 20 chickens, a couple milk goats and some raised beds.
        The only place that has more guns and ammo than I do is my Dad. When people wonder where I got the idea of investing in guns they don’t ask anymore when we go up to my Dads. 70+ years of loading, shooting and hunting has produced quite a seasoned collection of arms.
        We’re 15 miles from a 65,000 sized sity and directly on the other side we’ve got a 5,000 sized city.
        I wish everyone was set up as well as me. I wish I could share with more confidence. Maybe once TSHTF, the situtations will present themselves. …most likely duriing our trade fairs.
        Wish us luck!

      14. Net Ranger,
        I’ve thought of the same thing on the cabins, except building a few couple ones, like 1/2bdrm, 1bath, set up for total off grid, (solar power, wood heat, propane HW/cooking) with full basements that could be finished out ( or used as is ) and renting them out as overnight “vacation” type deals, getting enough to recoup the cost of building them hopefully.  Then I’d have some space for additional labor housing should it come to that.
        Actually, what I’d REALLY like to do is come up some reliable, skilled folks that would be an asset in a SHTF situation, but HAVE to live where they live now ( and say within 2-4 hrs drive of here, and let THEM finance the cabins, and me manage the guests with us splitting the rental income for now. They could have the basements for pre-positioning stuff (lockable so the overnight guests don’t have access). They could also have a week or two of the cabin time ( like a time share ) to come here and see how living on a working homestead is, and if things went south, they have a place to “bug out” too, with the majority of their own supplies already in place.
        Anybody interested, email me at Cabinplan2012(at)  I just set that up for this.

      15. RE: ManUp…Where ever it is you are at the moment of the crisis is where you start.  Bugging IN or OUT requires planning and rapid adjustments as the situation changes. (See Manos @ 1:29). 
             To bug out to the remote hinterlands sounds good, is it practical?  Who will provide security and perform all the labor intensive work required to survive?? 
             It will take a group of like minded people in very close proximity to survive and prosper in the crisis aftermath.( TnAndy @ 11:51).  No one person will have all the survival skills. 
             Think hand tools, weapons, animal husbandry, agriculture, medical.  These and other skills will be in demand. 
             Again, I vote for a like minded group to survive.
             P.S. Manos, thank you for sharing you truly unique perspective.  
         Προσευχόμαστε για την οικογένειά σας υγεία και ευεξία σας και.

      16. Manos: Προσευχόμαστε για σας και την υγεία και την ασφάλεια της οικογένειάς σας θα ήθελα να είμαστε υπερήφανοι για να μοιραστούμε ό, τι έχω μαζί σας.

      17. The best place to be if the shit hit the fan is Chattanooga Tennessee.  We have a new Volkswagon plant and the mall is booming. 

        If da shit hit da fan be in tennessee!!!

      18. Thank you all for the thoughts!
        I tend to agree with with OTE about people from the city going out in the country in any appreciable numbers. People/Sheeple are creatures of habit and the real bad apples will stay in the cities waiting for the gubment to help them. By the time they realize no help is on the way or available there won’t be any gas or food available.
        Anyone who knows anything will realize that people in rural areas have a lot of weapons and know how to use them so there will be no easy pickings.
        As far as location is concerned,radiation,volcanoes,eathquakes asside, I chose the midwest for the fertile soil, good precipitation, and farming population. 
        These are good people and if society goes down the tube I think people will band together very quickly. I feel there will be enough time out here for good alliences to form. I have most of the basics covered now but, of course, could always use more. I pray the bad parts don’t last for a long period of time and things don’t go mad max which I don’t think they will.
        Just get your garden going and learn basic life skills.God Bless,James 

      19. Two questions:

        How far does the country need to sink be for you do something about it?
        What are you going to do?

        Read “Common Sense 3.1” at ( )

         “Spread the News”



      20. My Sears & RoeBuck chain saw is electric powered from PV panels.

      21. For those with room to take others in, keep their skill sets in mind. A doctor, surgeon or combat medic with experience, even a dentist, should get an automatic pass. Men with light infantry skills, automatic pass, because they can train others in proper defense, recon, etc…
        I would also give an animal doctor a pass, if you have livestock. An engineer, they’re usually good problem solvers, even outside their specialty, in case you’re in a position to salvage equipment, or put equipment to use it was not originally intended.
        Lastly, someone old school, with the knowledge of setting traps, edible plants of the area, curing hides. I’d take one old West Texas cowpoke, or a Appalachian hillbilly, or an American Native Indian, an Idaho hunting guide, and so on, to a thousand NYC stockbrokers, Las Vegas gamblers, etc… Quality counts.

      22. Durango and Fed up….who cares about employment in a true SHTF scenario or short term future after SHTF??  In a situtation like JW writes about in Patriots…jobs are what you do every day to survive…no one is going to be heading out at 7 am to go to a job to work for a paycheck…so to me IMO at that time unemployment doesn’t mean squat.
        Netranger….I sure love your idea….I have always wondered since reading ‘end of the age’ if we’d ever see some sort of communal living. We have been invited to join a group that has everything real similiar to the group in JW rawles book, but only if we can meet minimum requirements and then after meeting all in the group, be voted in and the vote has to be unanimous……I don’t see it happening cause it is financially daunting to say the least with even the minimum requirements and I see the time line as being very short. IMO SWHTF before the end of this year…I am looking at natural things coming into our world this Sept thorough Nov that is going to up end everything.  But your place sounds really cool, awful glad for you and your family  🙂

      23. How about living in a small-medium town of 20,000-50,000? Or  a small city  of 100,000? These are areas if you have like minded people who are armed,have useful skill sets are perfect. You can set up check points around the town, and if you have a geography that can be perfect for hunting and growing food it will be perfect.  Living in a secluded area in a rural area will get you killed. I posted this video on the other article to show that going solo in WROL is not a good idea at all.

        • Your video is not viewable. Is a password required?



      24. I have a question to anyone who lives in Virginia Beach or lived their. I am planning to move their after college, is it a good place to be when the shtf? And if not what parts of Virginia are a good place to be in wrol scenario? This is to any current and former Virginian?

        • ma, as far as va beach is concerned, i would not live there again. i lived there 16 years. as of right now, it is home to the biggest navy fleet in the eastern hemisphere, has more, af, army, & spec forces units there, than most of the country in total. it will be a prime target of opportunity for anti american terroism, & suffers from nummerous gang problems, including but not limited to, bikers, ms13, so many others, i have lost count through the years. definitly not my choice. i still have some of my best friends there, but they can bug out in a ny minute. a better virginia choice would be anywhere west of i 95. good luck

      25. Hi all -I’ve thought about this as well, and decided to stay put in Pittsburgh/Western PA.

        Yes, it’s one of the foremost (or first) Rustbelt cities, but our education/hospital complex has mostly stopped the decline, along with exporting 2/3rds of our population to CA, FLA, NY, etc.  If the city does get crime-ridden, a 30 minute drive gets you way out into farm country (compare that to any major city, LA, SF, NYC, D.C. a 1-2 hour drive at least to clear the ‘burbs in traffic)

        We’ve got water in several big rivers and wells, fuel – oil (discovered here), natural gas (Marcellus shale) and wood, transportation (rivers again) and railroads, we can grow most everything but citrus (even if it isn’t as pretty as CA veggies) and have the water to do so.
        Not too hot, not too cold, not too much snow like the Northwest and Northeast, no HUGE insects like the South.   We get the odd tornado, but usually pretty isolated and not swarms like we just saw in Tuscaloosa (I think the tips of the Appalachians kind of break up the storms a bit).

        The worst we usually get is local flooding (ie: don’t live right next to a creek)…but not the kind of floods that the Mississippi gets when the levees break (something else to consider – floods miles away from the river).

        There’s a reason that the colonial settlers built a city here.

        I think that if TSHTF many from the sunshine states might just come back home (hopefully not in the Golden Horde way) bringing whatever goods and skills with them.

        As far as food grown in CA, water is already a huge problem, where they have to decide whether to use the Colorado river for crops, industry, or drinking.  Don’t forget the wildfires out west too.

      26.    I think that a family-sized group would only have a good chance in a complete meltdown if their homestead was isolated enough to allow them to hide. Most of us are not there. 
           Trying to time such an event is problematic to say the least. There is a good chance that some event will occur and things will devolve from there. Many of us would have to pretty much shelter in place. I agree that many would flee the colder climates if an event happened during winter or lasted into winter. Many beautiful homes would be abandoned when prople figured out how hard it id to heat 3000-4000sf without modern furnaces. A winter (or even a night) would suddenly become much longer.

           The existing gangs are good at bullying people in an anvironment where the victims are restrained from fighting back and resources like gas, food, and electricity are readily available. Their strength would quickly diminish as these constraints and ready resources were taken away. I would not expect them to suddenly start playing by the rules. I mainly expect their would-be victims to start playing by new rules. We have to keep in mind that groups of defenders will be just as desperate as the locusts.

           In a total meltdown of much duration there would be a lot of suffering and thinning of the herd as many of us living “the good life” (even those of us who are middle class and think we are “hot sh**) find out hard it is to make it in a world where ATM cards and smart phones will not get us our next meal.

           The idea of hunting for food is laughable for most of us. A human being requires a lot of territory for survival this way. That is why agriculture was invented in the first place. Most of the game which now seems ubiqutous in suburbia now would almost instantly disappear as soon as it started being chased.

           I suspect that those of us many regard as “hillbillies” will, in many cases, have a leg up on seeing the other end of any SHTF scenario.

      27. @TNAndy…LOVE your idea…but wondering if the idea of having people  rent the cabins is a good one? If the SHTF..won’t they remember the “cozy,little cabins” where they vacationed and felt so safe?

      28. BJ -you wrote: 
        Durango and Fed up….who cares about employment in a true SHTF scenario or short term future after SHTF??  In a situtation like JW writes about in Patriots…jobs are what you do every day to survive…no one is going to be heading out at 7 am to go to a job to work for a paycheck…so to me IMO at that time unemployment doesn’t mean squat.

        I wrote thinking of BOTH a long slow slide into the abyiss (which is what appears to be happening now IMHO) and a quick SHtF happening.Thus, if you want to have a BOL in a northern climate (or anywhere you deem fit), EMPLOYMENT counts in the long slow slide, not JUST your skill set.
        Also, IMO in a fast SHtF situation, the choices you have made in your life before that will mean the difference between having preps or being one of the horde. So yeah, I guess you are correct: Post SHtF your “new job” is survival and then there will be no such thing as “unemployment”.

      29. Montana mike,

        Are you Greek? (Εισαι Ελληνας?)
        Thanks for your kind wishes. (Ευχαριστώ για τις προσευχές σας).
        Things are bad for all the globe.
        I’m praying for all of you guys.  

      30. SmokyMtnLady,
        Maybe, but a couple things come into play there.  One, will they have the gasoline and forethought to even head back ?  And the other is, the plan to block access.  If you aren’t already here, or have an ownership stake, you won’t be allowed in.  That is exactly the kind of thing we already talked about in terms of friends/relatives of other folks already living here “hey….remember that place where Uncle Johnny lives ?…..we could go there”…..uh…no, you can’t either.
        What I would do is stay in communication with the couple co-owners of the cabins, and tell them “time to consider an extended ‘vacation’. ”  They ALSO need to understand the rules….don’t show up with a couple extra carloads of folks.

      31. Sharp Tool,
        I was raised in a HUGE house (in my previous post, we sold it to the people with 8 kids). It had 3700 square feed just on the ground floor, 1000 sqft upstairs and a full basement plus (it had basement UNDER the GARAGE too! Ultimate bomb shelter.
        Anyway, I mention this because we heated it with WOOD! LOTS AND LOTS OF WOOD! On the farm we had about 100 acres of woods and we seldom had to chop down a tree. Always one dying or getting blown over. So, we used chainsaws and man did we use them a lot! But, we had a small electric chainsaw. It was a Craftsman and was purchased in the late 70s. We used it in the garage to trim stuff up that was cut a little long or a little odd. We actually used it quite a bit.
        I needed to trim up a christmas tree last december… and I borrowed it! Yes! Its 35 years old. I asked my dad if the chain had ever been sharpened. He said it had not. Now, understand, we never took it to the woods and we never run it in the dirt, but, 35 years later the thing is still running on the original chain and its never been sharpened and it still cuts like the day we bought it.
        There is something about the way an electric motor runs that is conducive to not dulling the chain. I wonder, WTSHTF if using a generator and an electric saw might be preferable to running gas saws. Just a thought.

      32. I read a lot of good points here, I honestly don’t think most people have really thought this kind of thing out well enough. I am a leader in a Prepper group of over 100, half of them are what I would call serous preppers. We do group buys on wheat, freeze dried foods, communication equipment, books, all kinds of supplies. We recently bought over 100 of the same radio and are setting up a communication grid across our city, some also using HAM equipment. What about those on prescription drugs, what’s your plan for that. Better learn about herbs and essential oils while there is still time. Our group has meetings twice a month to talk and plan.
        From this group that has been active for 2 years now, I have hand picked 5-6 families that I have asked to join me and my family at our bug out location. I am still looking at others. We have over 50 acres, year round water, stocked pond, solar powered water wells (2), planted our orchard this spring, starting on the 5 acre garden as well. I have only scratched the surface of our plans.
        It is going to take community to survive if the worst case scenario does happen, people you know and can trust, maybe with your life. You will need people with skills, lots of them. Skills we have in our group. Welding and fabrication, farming, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, carpentry, hunting, equipment operators, doctor, nurses. Select people that are willing to get in the dirt and work.
        The cabin idea is a good concept, provided you know who you are letting in. We are going a slightly different direction, it’s called a WOFATI house. Semi underground, energy efficient, less visible on the right terrain. .
        I could go on for hours on this, the point I am trying to make is you better have a plan! Thinking you are just going to go out into the woods and hunt for your food is no plan. I talk with a lot of people about this kind of thing and most don’t have a clue what is coming if we see a total societal collapse. Remember the videos you saw last December, the images of the people stampeding into the stores on Black Friday, walking over and on their fellow man for a deal on a lap top or other Chinese made junk. Imagine those same people stampeding the grocery stores. That is the Golden Horde on a good day!
        Many of you will think I am going too far, to each his own. If TSHTF scenario doesn’t happen and we somehow make it though this mess, I’ll sell my silver and guns and build my retirement home on this property.Gas will still be high, the need for local organically grown food will only increase so we will become farmers. Best old/new business to get into in my opinion.

      33. There’s nothing quite like a couple of Stihl long bar chain saws doing a duet in the woods on a Fall morning.  We heated with wood too.  It was a family affair with splitting & stacking “hedge” wood.  One winter we had over 30 ricks of split wood stacked for our three house holds.  Osage Orange is the highest btu wood in the U.S.  You can burn a fire place down with it.

      34. James is absolutely right “People/Sheeple are creatures of habit and the real bad apples will stay in the cities waiting for the gubment to help them. By the time they realize no help is on the way or available there won’t be any gas or food available”

        The key to survival will be recognizing the signs and acting immediately to “GOOD” (get out of dodge).

        If you need to leave your area (like I do) you need to pay attention every day. Get gas, get to ATM’s if necessary and go quickly and quietly.

        Know what signs to look for… I believe we’ll have about three days as SHTF before anyone realizes what is happening (in a man-made scenario). watch the dollar, watch gold, and watch the bond market and don’t procrastinate! If you’re wrong the first time, it makes for a great practice run. Better wrong than then caught in the middle of chaos.

        Maybe I’ll take a moment to post on this thread to let you all know that it’s (a) GOOD time!

      35. I’d have to say if you think about getting out of dodge pick a spot that is very hard to live on. I live in the panhandle of TX and here it would be very hard to stay alive due to the fact it is bone dry, however i was born here so I know where to look for water and the hunting here is very good. But I just don’t think the masses would make it to this area without dying of thirst to get here. As far as skills go I was brought up hunting and fishing and camping Thank God I also am still working in construction so I have many skills that would be useful when the time comes. And yes as a Texan I would say I’m armed more then most, If they come to take my preps they may get them but the cost will be very high!

        God bless you all


      36. Manos… I am a sixty five year old grandson of Italian immigrants.  With an electronic translator I wanted you to read in you own language how I feel about you and you situation in Greece. 
            Most Americans do not understand what it was like to try to survive under German occupation in WW2 and the post war crazyness.  You alone, of the posters here, with your current crisis truly can give insight to what we can only imagine.
            I look forward with anticipation to each one of your comments.

              Να είστε καλά ελληνικά ο φίλος μου  (MM)

      37. m.m
        Thank you very much. I appreciate your support. i  was really surprised and touched to read in my language a message thousands of ,miles away
        What i’m afraid though is that Greece, Ireland, and Spain were the guinea pigs.
        The real target is U.S. With the knowledge gained from screwing sovereign states, now they can proceed.
        Stay alert all of you. Inform others and prepare phsycally and mentally.
        It’s difficult to pass the knowledge because people prefer to live their nirvana. They don’t want to lose their dancing stars, the idols, the x-factors, the Mcdonalds, and the playstations. That’s why nobody rebels in Greece or Ireland.
        This Merkel lady is the new Adolph and knows how to manipulate states, governments, and masses. Nazi propaganda was a kindergarden comparing to this anorgasmic creature.
        My best wishes and support to all

      38. Manos:  make sure you stash enough tsipouro and kaltsounia to last you through the tough times.
        Ζήτω η Ελλάδα

      39. to many people have been watching too much TV,suvivorman,duel survivor ect. 
         many should just go to the woods and take just a knife,gun and some fire starting things, maybe a canteen and try it for a few days, pick some nice days , like when it’s raining hard, cold,windy because an econimic collapse is not going to wait for good weather because man has screwed themselves.
         If we have an economic collapse or just a local disastor like katrina, food, gas and everything that people can carry is gone within 4 hrs.even if we’re going to get snow storm, the store shelves are empty  everyone with autos will be setting in 50 mile long parking lots out of gas whining and for the government to get there with water, or they will be robbed of their gas and valuables,food ect., I’m talking about an econimic collapse now, not a rain storm.
        we’ve seen it with every disastor for yrs
            Once you leave your home, whether it’s on the 12th floor of a high rise or on a back street in a hick town, or even where I live in the country, you’re a refugee and fair game for anyone,gangs,druggies,LEO, even good people looking for a hand out and how many handouts can you afford before you’re in the same line.
            smart people will have enough supplies for a month or two, even a yr right where they are at, sit tight and see what floats to the top in a month, one person could always go out and do a little scouting every few days to see where all the sheeple are and who is winning.
              Many people were just getting by during the last depression and into the 40s, but this time it will be different, more people, more dishonest people, more druggies,gangs, more people dependent on the government handouts. 
          I think some people think a complete collapse will be a romantic adventure that they can call off and go home when theyr’re tired of the game,
          everyone should set back and look at their own situation and figure out what they can do, forget all the propaganda on the survival sites. 

         I live in the woods and have everything that we lived on during the last big depression, hand saws,tools,canning equipment,grain mill,gardens,fruit trees,wood,root cellar,game,spring water that never drys up and I  know how use everything, but don’t look forward to it.
         If there is a collapse, ti will probably last for decades so you have to plan long term, like when will all the jobs come back so Americans can go to work, even fast jobs won’t come back for yrs after a collapse, maybe the med field if someone wants to deliver a baby and get a chicken for pay like the depression days.

         then like the depression, not everyone will be affected and some may not even know it’s happening.

      40. Burt G,
        You forgot tzatziki and souvlaki. 🙂
        Be safe

      41. OKPREPPER,
        you sound a lot like some one I kind of know here in Michigan  😉
        Thanks for all your posts, insight and well wishes/prayers

      42. @Manos, couldn’t have said it better myself! My sister in law is Greek, she still has family living in your beautiful country…makes me sad to see how things are falling apart!

      43. Mac, and everyone!

        While I have not yet read all of the thoughts on this thread, I MUST stress that you do NOT want to be in any Urban area when the SHTF for two additional reasons. The packs of feral dogs alone may kill a number of people as people turn them loose when they cannot feed them.

        BUT bigger than this is the rampant disease that IS going to break out. Not just the mental disease as is mentioned in “One Second After” as everybody on psych meds goes off cold turkey, AT ONCE, but the people who cannot dispose of their own waste. They’ll keep piling their rotten grabage in dumpsters to never be emptied, next to their homes, they’ll maybe dig a hold to relieve themselves in, but probably just plug their own toilets. I live in a rural area now, but when I last lived in a suburban area, I could think of little other than getting away from the hundred people (actually several hundred) in the vicinity who would have no idea how to NOT spread disease. Then, a mosquito bite later, and no matter the precautions, you can be infected.

        I am horrified by the idea of no working utilities/services, not for myself, but by what those near me would do not out of maliciousness, but out of sheer ignorance and apathy. It’s horrifying to think of, just wait till they start chucking out their waste onto lawns, etc, making biohazard mine fields. Not a pretty picture. Ugh.

      44. Comments….. .  Read this book by Immanuel Velikovsky titled “Worlds in Collision.”  Then study (for a brief moment) the image of planet Mars or Valles Marineris the Grand Canyon of Mars and formulate a conclusion of how the Valle was created, consider the rotation of Venus and Uranus and why those planets rotate clockwise rather than counter clockwise or vise versa, study photos of Utah, the Grand Canyon to see how deep and how far inland water or the ocean once travelled and rested, consider Woolly (migrational) Mammoths flash frozen with Summer vegetation (Google it) still in their mouth with undigested plant(s) grown in more moderate conditions, read the written history of the Sumerians, Assyrians, Egyptians, Chinese, Maya, Toltec, Aztec, Eastern Islanders, Brasileros, Israel, Greek Isles, Middle East, Plato, Aristotle which go into detail of world events that changed how man viewed the planetary system coupled with earthly devastation based on the Sun, magnetism, electrical forces, orbits, elliptical travel, plate tectonics, magma movement, increased volcanic/seismic activity and the list goes on. 

        I don’t know about you, but I was throughly confused of the stories in the bible as a child and well into adulthood until I read Velikovsky’s views and explanations of global events of the past. I implore you to read his writings and I hope it provides answers and peace to those that are conscientiously troubled with the past and current events.

      45. ww2/axis banned p.metals, s.ide a r .m.s,
        ind. radio use/ownership, etc.
        1950 inc. tax 91%,
        so p.metals can also be legally taxed hi. . .
        axis also: banned job hopping, vacations,
        h.races/gambling, tried to stop cigs, fats, etc.
        axis REQUIRED exercise, etc.

      46. Be-Ware Flathead Valley Montana… especially CFALLS Columibia Falls ;0P MONTANA… no joke! The town is litterally INBRED TRASH ; just within the town limits are 8 registered child molesters… 26 registered sex offenders live within 10 miles and the town has serious Alchohol and Meth problems… not to mention High rate of rapes and Violent domestic disputes stabbings and shootings… it’s a typical montana redneck town with an attitude and it’s all bad! ;0p I’m just warning you … is you move here are visit here… avoid CFALLS Columbia Falls Montana, Hungry Horse and Martin City! The LOCAL red Neck inbreeders here will ROB YOU And Harass you just cause your from somewhere else!

        An Don’t stop and stay a local Columbia Falls Motel or anywhere near WEST GLACIER PARK… the LOCAL Women brag about the TOURISTS they rob at the local gym! -TRUTH
        just sayin’ … ya been warned!

      47. Great commentary! Don’t plan on living in the wild is good insight. There are far too many people who think “If TEOTWAWKI happens, I’ll just hunt deer and grow a small garden. Prepping. Done.” There will be far too many people with that mentality. Expect animals to disappear pretty rapidly in all but the most remote areas of the country.  

        I recently posted an article over on my site about the most pressing threat during TEOTWAWKI. It won’t be from a lack of food or drinkable water; it won’t be from cold. It’ll be from other people. It’ll be from the so called Zombie Apocalypse.


      48. Love all your comments…thanks for all of your insights.

        Having driven through the evacuations of Houston in both Rita (2005) and Ike (2008) I can tell you that those who keep the weather eye out and leave first do best.  Work related delays in 2005 meant I had to spend over 12 hours to get from Houston to San Antonio (a 2.5 hr trip normally) with the weird vision of seeing nothing but taillights in all drivable lanes heading out of Houston was surreal to say the least — and I mean ALL drivable lanes including frontage roads, shoulders, and main lanes ALL headed west.  In 2008, having had an eye out and undelayed by job, it only took the normal 2.5 hrs.

        I am working on my own preps — albeit not as quickly as I would like due to financial stringencies over which I have had no control recently.  I really appreciate all the tips I have seen on these posts.  Life in a big city will NOT go well WSHTF.

      49. @Mardochee Augustin: Virginia Beach? I’d call that a probable “no”, and here’s why:

        Virginia Beach is one of seven (yes, “seven”) cities in that area, all slammed together, in an area more commonly known as the Tidewater Area: Norfolk, Suffolk, Newport News, Hampton Roads, Portsmouth, Chesapeake, and Virginia Beach, which sits on the tip of Virginia.

        Virginia Beach is surrounded on all but one side by heavily populated areas, and that one open side (southwards) is almost all swamp (to be specific, the “Great Dismal Swamp”, here: ).

        Norfolk, just next door, has a *huge* naval base, and both cities share a large Marine Amphib. base, a Naval Air Station, etc. Oh, and Hampton hosts the very large Langley Air Force Base (complete with NASA testing facilities), and, if memory serves, there’s a large Coast Guard station lurking in there somewhere.  Virginia Beach itself is crammed solid with tourists during the summer, and so are numerous sites all in and around the entire region (the beach, the numerous historical sites, etc). 

        OTOH, Virginia Beach is home to the Navy SEALs and BUD training… 

        Long story short – imagine having to bug out form all that. Unless you’re living on the south end of town, and are a quintessential swamper, you’re going to be in up to your eyeballs in humanity if you live there.

        Now mind you, things may have changed since the last time I lived there (1985), but I sincerely doubt it.


        Personally, I live in an okay area (Portland, OR metro area), but it could be a *lot* better. That said, my in-laws live about a tank of gas away (1 tank + 0.5 jerry can if I take the Jeep), and they live in a small town well away from any large town, let alone city. My only bit is to GTFO, which I have tentative (but developing) plans for by way of non-freeway routes (it’s a bit of a toughie to do in the Cascade Range, but certainly not impossible).

        Personally, I want to locate my BOL somehwere that I and my wife can eventually retire. An excellent place to do it would be Vernonia, Oregon – only two routes in/out of town, small place where everyone knows each other, etc.

        No matter where it is,? Out here, water is definitely *not* a problem (there’s the running joke that folks out here don’t tan… they rust.) The big problem will be dealing with the masses of hippies and stoners suddenly converted (by hunger/calamity) into a horde of overly-aggressive foragers. 

        To those who argue that most folks will sit tight? Heh, not out here. I live in an area of near-rabid outdoors types, who will all-too-easily confuse their miles of light forest hiking with rugged outdoorsmanship, and proceed to walk out into the woods anyway. Note that this is in spite of the fact that we see dozens of people who still get killed each year from getting lost, even in the woods within 20 miles of town.

        I figure these folks will sit tight for approximately two weeks after a rapid SHTF situation, until they realize that the gov’t isn’t going to take care of them anymore. *Then* they’ll go on a rampage. This gives me a very short window to assess whether to sit tight or bug-out (I live in an apartment – this decision will be a no-brainer if the analysis repeatedly comes up as a solid SHTF one.) I figure it will give me sufficient time to get out and get to the BOL without even seeing a public highway. 

        In either case, it pays to not only know where your BOL is, but to know where you are right now… not just the maps, but the people.

      50. It’s better to live close to gorillas than humans when the SHTF, mark my words. Even before this happens, you can sense the sadism in your fellow human being…sad. But true. My opinion is that you must only count on yourself, sometimes you can not even trust your own shadow.

      51. To Whomever: I’m looking for a way to send this fine article (“SHTF Living & Bug Out Locations”) to my E-Mail, so I can re-read it in greater depth and study it. I can’t seem to find the “Send” button, however. Would someone out there in computer-land be so very kind as to send it to me? My address is…[email protected]. Thank you very much. (Donald)

      52. I’d love to hear comments concerning our plan. We have our passports in good order and plan to fly out of the country when things look like they might hit the fan. We could afford to travel around safer parts of the globe for an extended period of time. If by chance we weren’t able to get a flight we do have a well and a spring and several firearms with ammo and probably 4 months of food. We are six miles from a small town in a forest where we do have deer, turkeys and squirrels to eat. We have four teenagers who can shoot fairly well besides my wife and myself. I think I would drop trees across the entrance to our half mile long drive and put up many signs advises against entry with perhaps the threat of being shot and eaten if we were down on supplies. We know our woods better than strangers and I suspect one of my teens could get behind most intruders easily and do them in if the need arose.

      53. Another thought or two. We have five gallon buckets which each hold about 60 cans of tuna. These have lots of protein and some calories. Salmon is also great. These last for five years at least and we rotate them. I don’t mind a can or two every week where I wouldn’t want to eat freeze dried that often. Tuna is just about 70 cents a can. Canned pasta sauce is about 85 cents a can and noodles will last years. Trader Joe’s has one pound plus chocolate bars for a great low price. Encourage your neighbors to stock up and perhaps they won’t be after your food stocks when and if shtf. I buy 100 half gallons of apple juice at a time for one dollar each (I have bought them for that price many times – on infrequent sales). I have lots of chocolate powder and instant coffee and rice and flour and sugar and oatmeal and olive oil and refried beans. We have two generators with enough fuel for a while and many cords of firewood – probably 25 at least with a national forest and a chain saw touching our land. We only have two neighbors within 1/2 mile and they are tuned in fairly well. We also have a 8′ diameter/ 6′ deep tub of water which could be used if we had trouble getting the 200 yards to our well.

      54. I am alone in prepping. I just get the you have lost your mind looks. I might be getting my mom on the same page. My brother is scared he always aha been scared of what’s in the sky. My sister’s place would be the best for all of us to hunker down at. Water not to far huge yard for gardening. She has a brick house with a basement underground and it is a one story house. Her husband is a cop & has friends who are FBI & Secert Service. So maybe a heads up from those connections. They are about 20 mins away by highway or backroads. I am a pretty good problem solver but I AM ONE PERSON! I live in south east Ohio on outskirts of a small town, & my sister is about the same distance of a smaller town. Any ideas of what you think of location and most important how to get the rest of my family on the same page? Oh we do have a good size camper pull along. I’m alone so any thoughts or ideas would be very helpful!!!

      55. I agree with those who claim that cities are death traps… in particular with the person who pointed out the problems of feral dogs on top of sanitation/disease. Our city already suffers a great deal from the “harmless” crimes of theft/robbery/breaking and entering… and that’s with large amounts of officers patroling to prevent/respond to crime. I hate to think of how bad it would get with all the men/women in blue abandoning their patrols to see after their own families.
        At least here in this part of Texas as soon as you see the last “planned neighborhood” and strip mall you’re surrounded by cattle ranches. Hunting elusive flighty game won’t be neccessary when there are acres upon acres of fenced in docil cattle to be had.

      56. Since everybody is seeming to leave for places far remote, I plan on staying right where I am since everybody will be gone anyway.

      57. My initial plan out of Washington DC was to to to WVU and get my son. Having read a few blogs, I now realize that is a plan destined to failure. I live on the east side of DC, getting to the west side (200 miles) will not work. I am going to buy land on the Eastern Shore (across the Bay Bridge) where I can walk to if needed. Thanks for the thoughts…

      58. After reading all these threads (and others), some of which have great ideas, the ‘trap’ denominator in all of them is as followed, as I see them:

        1. Live Stock will be well sought after, so the more you have, the more attraction you create. Try defending that 24/7, and with enough ammo. Gardens too. I don’t care how far you live from a city, a good strong wind will carry the smell of cow poop long and wide. And people will follow.

        2. Game Animals (deer, turkey, squirrels, etc.) if the migratory folks have access to weapons/trapping methods then that food source will dwindle…. quickly… if not migratory folks, then locals with no common sense about game management. For local communities, take the American Indian approach, harvest what you need and not what you want, and leave nothing to waste, let a fawn/buck/doe go so that we have a supply later.

        3. Rivers/streams will be fished to exhaustion. Oceans might be better. However at the risk of Pirates. And there will be pirates.

        4. Most people think about getting out of dodge with vehicles, how about boats (gas and wind powered), bicycles, foot. How fit will the individuals be to hike 25 miles/day to get to their BOL with a 50lb backpack? IMHO, if you cannot get to your BOL on foot within a day or two, you are screwed. Better off to bunker down.

        5. Where do you store most of your SHTF rations? At your BOL or at your Bunker Down? Best to have a plan that adjusts between both. And how will you transport them in the event you need to GOOD. Wheel barrels full of cash is NOT a good idea.

        6. How will you resupply ammo/rations? Will you depend on bartering, UN drops, in the ‘Field’, roll your own? Bow and arrows are great… so are knives, if you know how to use them. Learn woods-craft.


        1. Start EARLY and have a PLAN!

        2. This means that you know how to implement skills required to live in the SHTF scenario. Learn how to preserve food, self-defense, GOOD, NOW.

        2. Build a community. You WILL NOT be able to do this by yourself.

        3. Be realistic with what is going on around you, you know when its gonna rain before it actually does mentality.

        4. Know when to fight and when to HIDE. I am a big believer in the 3:1 rule, it takes only 3 people to take 1 person down, 99% of the time. If you are that 1 person, God help you that you didn’t create enough attention to merit such a feat.

        5. USE THAT GREY MATTER… nothing is faster than the speed of stupidity. Before you act, think about what you are doing and the possible pitfalls of that action.

        6. How will you protect yourself/family from disease and injuries (gunshot wounds, broken bones, etc)?

        7. PRAY, ALOT…

        This isn’t a comprehensive list, but enough hopefully to make folks think. There are lots of good info here, hopefully I can add a few 0.02 cents.


      59. There are a lot of great ideas on this thread and most of you have put a ton of thought into this. I haven’t begun my own preps yet but am planning them in my head and will begin ASAP. IMO it doesn’t make a ton of sense to build these bags and bags of 50 pounds of supplies and back pack into the woods with no place to live. You’ll make it for a little while but that’s no way to live. I’ve researched and thought about where the least amount of people are where you won’t have to worry about people stealing your rations and from what I’ve seen Maine looks like a good place. Per square mile it has less people than most places south of it. If you can stand the cold, snow, and 6 months of winter. I would think that this would preserve some of the wildlife since theres less compition. Personally I don’t think I could handle it so I’m opting for warmer milder climate. The one thing I haven’t read or heard anyone talk about is health related problems. Being a nurse, my plan also includes a complete trauma bag of supplies including boxes of gloves, (clean and sterile), ivs, iv start kits, tubing, bags of iv fluids for dehydration and/or major blood/fluid loss, bottles of sterile saline and normal saline, alcohol, iodines, ointments and antibacterial lotions, and such. Maybe I can barter my services when tshtf someday. I also plan to add a couple more rifles to my stash. I have just about 10,000 rounds of assorted ammo and always looking for more when I find it.

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