Camping & Survival

What Makes a Good Bug-Out Location?

I’m going to tell you a true story, but to protect my friend’s privacy and OPSEC—as all good preppers should do—I’m going to remain as anonymous as possible. I’m telling you because I believe in helping people and I like to imagine a world after SHTF where we help each other rather than hinder each other, so here it goes…

I recently had the opportunity to visit a friend’s bug-out property. What started out as a dream for land outside of the city for a nice get-away to keep animals and a shooting range turned into the perfect place to start a bug-out plan in motion.

In my opinion, any piece of land outside of the city has the potential for a good bug-out location. Any deer lease, lake property, land, or farm—with time, patience and a little manpower—converts into a secure location to keep you and yours safe during an economic collapse, chaos and violence in the city, major natural disaster, or flu outbreak.

My friend lucked out on their purchase. It was a full-time homestead for a large family, so all the comforts of home are already there. With a few additions and tweaks, this bug-out location not only provides safety and security, but comfort as well for months if need be to ride out a SHTF storm.

As silly as the National Geographic show Doomsday Preppers can get, there is something to say for the ratings it gives each prepper at the end of each segment. Based on the same rating system on how well each prepper has planned for water, food, shelter, security, and X-Factor, I’ve rated my friend’s place for each category as an example for what makes a good bug-out location, as well as tips for how to improve it.


The recommended amount of water per person per day is one gallon for drinking, basic personal hygiene and basic food prep. My friend fairs very well in this department. There are two full ponds, a swimming pool, city water, and well water on the property. In the kitchen pantry I found collapsible water containers, a small water filtration system and emergency water treatment tablets. Though there is plenty of accessible water on-site, I would add the AquaPodKit, or WaterBOB, cases of bottled water and a larger filtration system in case the ponds dry up.
Score: 19.5


A regular supply of non-perishable food items are stored at the property year round; however, there is not much variety or enough. I found no cans of food, only boxed non-perishables that require hot water, milk and butter to prepare. This is the area I found my friend was lacking in most. The property has more than enough room where they could hold at least a year’s supply of food storage. However, they have started a small garden and my friend is researching the best livestock to keep on the property. Further, if push came to shove deer, squirrels and rabbits spotted on game cameras roam the property in abundance.

Score: 13


Very few people know the actual location to the property and it is not visible from any road. The property is fairly difficult to get to—I had to be lead in. There are no markers, signs or address numbers at the gated entrance. The non-descript gate can be closed and locked.

The property sits less than a full gas tank away from the city—close enough to get out quickly, but far enough to survive the a nuclear bomb blast in the middle of the city. There is little traffic getting out there and alternative routes exist in case roads became congested. If you had to, you could walk to the property in less than two days.

With less than 3,000 people, the nearest town is not densely populated. Most live on their land. Small towns can be nosy, however, so my friend never shops in town for supplies.

I give my friend bonus points for finding a place with plenty of shelter. The main house has three bedrooms and two full baths. Additionally, there is a bunkhouse with a kitchen, bathroom, and large bedroom and one more building with a bedroom, sink and toilet. All together, there are five bedrooms, four toilets, three showers, two bathtubs, and six sinks. That is plenty of room for extended family members, friends or partners to all bug-out together comfortably. If need be, the property could serve as a survivor compound where everyone helps out.

For extra storage space, there are two fully enclosed and lockable garages, and three covered storage buildings for equipment.

A propane tank heats the water and lights the stove, but the heat and air conditioner are electricity-powered. There is no alternative to heat food. I suggest adding a charcoal grill, propane stove and emergency stoves to the property. A wood burning stove would provide heat for the winter and as an alternative for cooking. In my friend’s defense, they do plan to add solar panels to the roof of the main house—eventually having the capability to go completely off grid.

I found an old non-working generator in one of the out buildings that if working would be an excellent back-up power source before the installation of solar panels. I would work on getting it fixed and storing up gasoline. My friend could also benefit from a windmill.


Score: 18


For firearms and ammunition, my friend is doing just fine and that is all I have to say about that.

As far as other security goes, my friend needs to add just a few extra measures for some added protection. The property has no complete perimeter fence, nor do I really expect one. However, with the right tools, the right volunteers and promise of plenty of free beer—building a perimeter fence close to the house wouldn’t take much.

The house sits up on a hill and with binoculars you can see in most all directions. I would add a hidden security camera at the gate’s entrance as a precaution.

The main house’s design allows for a lot of natural light to come into every room. There are plenty of floor to ceiling double windows and doors. When the weather is perfect this makes for a cool, breezy and comfortable dwelling, however also easy to break into. My friend should work on storing wood or other fortifiable material, hammer and nails so they can quickly reinforce windows and doors.

Score: 17.5


My friend has no legal dependents. This means that if they have to get out of dodge, they are only taking people they want. They already know who gets to go and who has to stay. These chosen ones know the plan and are dedicated to helping.

The last owners of the property left furniture, old tools and equipment. This saves money for necessary and needed items and many of the old farm tools would work as makeshift weapons.

My friend has an ample supply of liquor on the property. I also spotted a carton of cigarettes and chocolate. We all know the uses of such vices, but they also make excellent bartering collateral. Since my friend isn’t a coffee drinker, there was enough for one cup of morning Joe for myself, but not many others. This may be a personal preference, but since coffee stores, I’d keep a large can in the kitchen.

Score: 18


Overall, my friend’s bug-out location is ideal. It is easy to defend, has the ability to become self-sufficient and has ample storage to stock supplies. As with anything, it needs a few improvements, but as it is, I wouldn’t complain if I have to bug out there.
Total score: 86

When I took the Doomsday Preppers quiz on the National Geographic website on my friends behalf, based on only the observations I made, the property as it is right now has the chance for those staying there to survive for four to eight months. Not bad, I say. How long will you survive?

What do you think makes the ideal bug-out location? Have I left anything out? Share your ideas in the comment section.

Note: Pictures in this post are representative only.


The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (65)

  1. I must add;
    I have at least 8 good/trusted longtime friends that are employed by local, county LE that are all for this particular subject matter. From what I understand many of these good people will honestly be among the most scrutinized sector of the population, much more-so than you, or I!!

    God Bless these individuals who many of us believe will be our enemies if SHTF, who are currently devoting, in their spare time just how to handle these adverse situations which we call SHTF. Their knowledge is extremely valuable and teach the most efficient ways in which is sooo different than most of believe regarding SHTF and Bug Out set ups and locations.

    Many of us believe all LE and DOD employees will be the ones we will need to run from. Not true!
    Watch for those of foreign origin more so than many local Lea’s. Feds are a different story.

  2. Unfortunately,! Everything we post can/will be intercepted.
    The most important element is to find a way to organize without many knowing what/where we are doing so.

    We “MUST” find a way to organize!

  3. Well I must say that even though I did not read each and every comment, I read enough to see that not very many people give any thought to any extent about what the Holy Bible has to say on the subject of survival or the impending “SHTF” scenario. You don’t have to be a Bible thumper to find it interesting what is written at 2 Timothy 3:16, John 3:1-21, which includes the scripture of John 3:16 that is often seen on bill boards and church signs. Also if one would check out what is recorded at 2 Peter 1:19-21. And finally take a look at Revelation 21:1-8. Verse 4 specially offers something that sounds good.

  4. You people do realize hunting and fishing as we know it will be over when the SHTF.
    The order of the day will be to kill anything and everything edible on sight. And fish hooks or lines, I dont think so. Telephones, dynamite and lime in jars will kill thousands of fish.
    AND, homeland security can come and take your supplies (Recently signed by Obama) leave you to starve to “Feed those more needy” just like the current socialism programs where we reward those who are part of the problem rather than part of the solution.
    Only way to go is greenhouse growing, for winter and summer, and aquaponics where your fish fertilize your plants for you. They can only take what you have ready to harvest at the moment they arrive, so you just continue on and you can make it. They probably will be too lazy to catch your fish and clean them and harvest your crops anyhow.
    There is a right way and a wrong way to do everything. Wake up people.

  5. Great discussion! I laughed and cried while reading through the posts, but most of all I’ve learned a great deal from those of you who have been doing this for a while. Trying to prep can be an overwhelming experience for a lot of single moms out there, but this is very helpful and informative. Thanks!

  6. Great article and props to your friend for finding a great bug-out property. I would add a need for portable water tanks and medical supplies to his list of equipment but otherwise he’s got a sweet set up. I can agree with some of the comments above though in saying that equipment and supplies will only get you so far… a community of well rounded and uniquely skilled individuals in conjunction with supplies would make for the perfect bug out location and team.

  7. I dont have the “get to” problem. I live in mine. And a correction on the post, re; Native Americans did it for 19,000 years. New carbon dated evidence both in Eastern Tennessee and on the “Topper” site on the bank of the Savannah River indicate the Native peoples were here 50,000 years ago!!!!!!! Pretty much destroys the ice bridge theories of 13,500 years ago. And recent studies show there are no Clovis points in Siberia. As in, they would have brought their existing tools if they came from Siberia.

  8. Like our pioneer ancestors we seem to think we can store enough to get us by. We need to remember Native Americans have lived here for 19,000 years. Books with photos of local edible plants, and native animals with recipes for Native American uses in a long or even short bug out may be more valuable than huge storage of food. After all we may not be able to reach that spot with all its goods. Every bug out pack needs survival first aid book and survival native foods books.You would be surprised just how many ways to cook those dandilions you try to weed out of your lawn.

  9. 56. I took a careful look at the house of safety in the woods that is shown by the water evaluation category. What a marvelous location indeed. Just about got everything going for it—an ideal hideaway it would appear. There are so many things going for it. But I took one look at this dream house in the woods with its perfect water supply and my hackles rose in horror. That beautiful stream flowing by will become the undoing of this cabin in the pines. The very first big spring run-off is going to eat away at that bank below the porch and the whole house in going to slide right into that ideal water supply. Amidst the sound of creaking, breaking timbers, shattering glass and the screams of drowning family members, that place of refuge is going to be swept away in a flash. Then, pray tell, what earthly good will the recommended “collapsible water containers, a small water filtration system, and emergency water treatment tablets” serve to the survivors, if any? Have you any idea what you would do in the event of such a disaster? To what, or whom, might you turn in such a wild scenario? There must be a better plan!!

  10. there are a lot of situations tha people are in, apartment dewellers in huge cities mostly young going to the big city to make good. most could not fry a raw chicken. the fast foot joints are everywhere. i think our crises will be the collapse of the structure of society,for whatever reason. things are obvious, if you do not have oxygen, you did in a few minutes, if you do not have water, you did in days, if you do not have food, you die with the pains of hunger after you have run out of water. so locate by a source of water,you are more likely to have food there also. gather all weaons to protect your selves and ammunition. learn how to maintain and repair these life support devices. disguise your location. throw deat wood and grow trees shrubs and any native plant to hiede the entrance. if you go in and out, place a dead tree or some moveable obstruction on the path or road. do not depend on anything that is gasoline powered. convert to alchol that you can make. have only close friends and relatives with you. and you cannot trust anyone. especially relatives whose company you will not like. and i think watch all those 1950’s movies where there is an invasion or war, or any crises and your unprapaired neighbors sledge hammer your bomb shelter to get in. vietnam vet, 101 airborne.

  11. Having a remote bug-out location is a reach if the collapse of society comes quickly. But how likley is that? Economic collapse, solar EMP, super-volcano eruption, even tension leading to nuclear launch usually have tell-tale signs before they happen. It’s important to stay up-to-date on current events, and not have your head in the sand. My job allows me to ‘work from home’, which I can do from my bug-out location. This gives me less heartburn over deciding when the time to BO is right, and when it is a false alarm. Best case scenario, I bugged out and had a fun few days camping with the wife while getting paid to work. Worst case, I’m in a non-urban setting where I can be more self-sufficient, and I’ve stocked preps. I’d not call that hoarding.

  12. I suggest readint the Left Behind series of books. The tribulation will last 7 years~! There will be a time when the government will require forced computer chip implants. (the mark of the beast)read Revalaton; King James Version. It says in the forehead or right hand, not “on” as all the other versions do.

  13. P.S. Forgot smell.
    A woman during her time smells like a badly wounded gutshot elk and you can smell them from 20 yards away easily..woodsmoke can be detected over a mile away and downwind even in broken country on blustery days that is a miles long and wide trace.
    A cigarette can be detected at over 300 yards by non polluted nonsmokers.
    Open can of tuna or even salmon amd every rat and cat for a mile comes running.
    ON a quiet day you can hear voices from hundreds of yards and hear fe
    Stop watching tv and pay these macho survivalist the money they are worth.el thumps in ground of wood splitter.

  14. There is no small town america, there are no free open spaces to retreat to so if you jump and run and do not own a prepared site you are squatters, temporary ones at that.
    Where area the true wilderness, trackless lands you talk of.
    Timber and ag firms have large security firms and manycharge fees even today but no camping overnight. All Federal land management are jealous land watcher/owners and will gladly bust tour camp and heads if you attempt to permanently squat in their domains.
    You whiteys try moving accross tribal lands let alone think you can squat there.
    MOST RURAL areas have more gov jobs than private and the private ranchers are no more thantaxhogs and welfare cheats.
    THE gov jobs pay higher than private and jobs at scoolls or cleaning county state or small town politicos toulets dream jobs.
    IN some states you cannot even get to public lands because they are surrounded by millions of acres of rich people and gated Rancheros.
    You will not be able to hide any private residence within 100 miles of pop centers or thouroughfares.
    Hell I am old but every year I walk over 20 to 40 miles after elk and cover damn near ever inch of area in a week.AND this is cross country steep at that and mostly heavy forested with fairly thick understory.
    Hell local young uns run my area twice over without a vehicle and if you think you can hide your place. Hell you even stink up the areas forget it.
    BEST bet is do the lib trick pretend poor and suck off gov, that’s best way unless your bod is worth selling that is.
    Sme thing I guess just different, mabe, paymasters.!

  15. man o man i cant believe people r reading this. so any body wants to share their bugout plan to us that r reading this, i will trade a small piece of .999 fine silver for that. my girls and i, do not i repeat, do not have a place to bug to, yet. i know it is suppose to be a secret, i do not know anyone else around me that takes this FOR REAL people laugh behind my back,some know we r a

  16. Some here are thinking right, main thing is to start living the life now, that will help you into the future. Learn from the Amish, they are living the life now and learn from the Mormons who teach you to prepare for hardship. Join a church, you need more in your life than just you. All shtf situations are different and require different solutions, learning to cope in your own environment should help you be prepared wherever you happen to be. To practice urban survival, if that is where you live, will serve you well.

  17. Disappearing into the “outback” may not be the right thing to do. Eventually, your supplies will run out. Me, I live away from the city, next to a river. If society implodes I’ll remain where I am with the supplies I have. If anybody comes to get my supplies, I’ll warn them once, and then do whatever it takes to maintain my security even if it means killing them. My neighbors tell me that they don’t have the money to stock up on food, but have no problem buying a wide screen TV, computer games, new car, motorcycles etc., etc. I they think I’m going to be giving them food because of their stupidity if the SHTF, they better think again.

  18. I’ll try to keep this one short and simple. Please forgive me for not indicating those of you that I agree with. Because most of you are relaying good advice. And for just hitting points rather than forming a cognitive paragraph structure.
    In my previous post some of you caught on to the “being nomadic”. Perhaps by the way I formed my post you didn’t catch on to being friendly? In that community is also important but that community will need to be nomadic right along with you. And not so populous that you draw attention.
    Also some of you caught on to the burden of to many goods. #38 unfortunately, you’re right though read on. I suggest to learn to use only what is needed and prepare to not need what is unnecessary. As many of you eluded to having much only makes you a a better prize (target). Storing food and supplies isn’t preparing it’s hoarding. #39 don’t make yourself a target and be a part of a community. #43 Those will be targets.
    Many of you caught on to “educate yourself” and the medicinal approach. Learn to build not only destroy. Learn to defend not to attack by taking what others have. There is plenty there with out taking from others, you only need to learn how to find and procure it.
    Transportation, I didn’t delve into. But think primitive even if that means only on foot.
    Clearing land to make your bug out. Big mistake rather think “no trace left behind”.
    All heading for the hills. Maybe so though most won’t make it nor will they be prepared to do so. After that, there are a lot of hills out there. Bet you don’t end up behind one I’m behind and if so I’ll just find another.
    One thing I meant to mention is to not decimate any one location of plant, animals or other resources. Instead move on and allow the area’s you’ve been to to replenish. Thus providing, if needed, a place that can be revisited. Though many won’t heed that.
    “ludicrous” well some people will never remove their head from the sand. I am positive or rather know for a fact that many in Argentina felt or believed the same.
    #36 order will come in the aftermath in part by such methods. But not due to those methods rather those methods will contribute to the chaos and the longevity of turmoil. What is essential is alertness and faculty, rather than gun ho.
    I figure I just fried some of y’all’s bacon. You are entitled to your opinion as am I. But for the most part y’all are thinking beyond the obvious whether your on the right track or not, that my friends is “faculty”. And I applaud you all for that, with the minority exception. LOL
    If any of you are interested in finding a group near you, I encourage you to check out that is what we are there for along with trying to assist you in that “faculty” by members sharing how to’s and their knowledge and experience.

  19. I think the jackal (#43) nailed this to the wall. we’d all have to become Hutterites because of their proven centuries of survival. but since the rest of the country has proven to be self-centered and spoiled, it appears as though we’re doomed. We might be able to trust our neighbors at first, when we still have food in our respective pantries, but when the food runs out…

  20. Very interesting article, I expect when everything goes to hell in a hand bag every one will be on their own. To survive, one needs food, water, bullets, and bandages, and the means to protect what you have, lacking that you won’t survive.

  21. Seems to me that you could get by with just a reasonable amount of ammo (primarily for hunting food) if you could bug out to the most remote location possible. All of the fleeing city dwellers would have (1) been shot and killed by other preppers or (2) starved to death before they could reach your location.

  22. Most folks don’t realize it but there are thousands of survival communities that have been thriving for centuries in the US. I’ve always been fascinated by the Hutterites, Mennonites, Amish, Quakers, etc., many of which Hutterites in the Dakotas I’ve personally met and have even associated with. Their lifestyles are so ideal, they have no need for internal police, much less security. Members do not even need money, yet each settlement has unimaginable wealth. Whatever they need to survive, they produce, including their own spiritual guidance. It’s not likely we’ll ever see a massacre, on the order of a Sandy Hook, coming from people of this caliber. By nature, each member of a settlement has an amazing disposition, which comes from the satisfaction each attains from having a diet that excludes hormonal disruptors, cortisol-elevating stress, and slacker lifestyle that leads to asses that are wider than a person is tall. Each community provides a degree of security that enhances self-worth for all members, not just a selective few. Each Hutterite community, for example, is valued at roughly one-hundred-million dollars (with farmland prices now doubling, so has each settlement’s value); with each community limited to about 100 members, each newborn becomes a millionaire at birth. Yet there are no slackers or deadbeats riding the necks of others. Population growth translate into new settlements. A Hutterite leader will never squander so much as a single penny on himself. All money gained from surplus production goes towards the welfare of the community — 100 percent. Compared to mainstream society, every baby is born into huge debt, thanks to our predatory nation. As far as survival goes, a group of people would be wise to model their own survival plans after one of these successful communities, all of which have survived the test of time.

  23. These SHTF scenarios are all well and good for television ratings, but in the real world, it’s not likely to be The End Of The World As We Know It. It’s much more likely to be a situation like so many of us went through with Hurricane Katrina.

    There was a breakdown of law and order for several days in most of the worst affected area, and some places were lawless for much longer. There was no electricity, no stores, and no services, because the first responders were victims of the storm too.

    Be prepared to protect yourself and your family. The police will be overwhelmed and in all likelihood, will not be able to respond in time to help you.

    I was in the national guard at the time. My unit was activated a couple of days before the storm, but because of the extent of the damage, it took us three days to deploy. The roads and highways were covered with fallen trees. Most bridges along the coastline were gone, as was much of the highway that runs along the beach.

    There were gangs of young men who took advantage of the chaos to loot, and steal, and prey on defenseless folk.

    Commenter # 39 is absolutely right… you will do much better in a bad situation as part of a group. I saw neighborhoods come together to clear trees from their streets, to help patch holes in houses, and to maintain the security of their neighborhoods against looters.

    While having a good weapon, plenty of ammunition, at least two weeks supply of non-perishable food and plenty of water is critical, having other supplies is just as important. A well stocked first aid kit is indispensable. Also, a month’s supply of any prescription medication is a great idea. You never know when the local pharmacy will be back in business.

    You’ll need lumber, nails, plastic tarp, plenty of duct tape (there’s no such thing as too much duct tape) a good chain saw with plenty of fuel, batteries, lots of batteries, a couple of good flashlights… you get the idea. You’ll have to be self sufficient, (not dependent on the government) and able to adapt. You may need to repair your home, at least temporarily. All of these things are much easier to do when you are working with your family and neighbors. Never underestimate the importance of good neighbors. Most of the folks who live in a neighborhood want to keep it safe and secure, and will work with you to protect it.

    Don’t get me wrong, a good weapon, and plenty of ammunition are on my list of SHTF supplies, but that list is pretty long, and most of the things on it are pretty mundane.

  24. Re: Dan Goldstein: Yes Dan, I just got back from a 5 day defensive handgun course at “Front Sight” in Nv…. “morefun than should be allowed”. But the training is the best. I do agree that getting a group together that you “Know & Trust” is important.
    Everyone should have a skill to contribute to the group. TRAIN and TRAIN some more.

  25. Major flaw- you are vulnerable if you’re isolated (see Rhodesia siege murders). Read Ferfal Aguire- After the economic collapse

  26. Well Dorfman has said it best. 2/3rd’s of the population will be dead in a year or so. Desease will be rampant, starving desperate people will be roaming the countryside scavaging for food and water. Odds are you won’t survive. At the very least… won’t be the first to die if you have planned……just sayin.

  27. To build networks of trusted friendlies: Get CERT disaster training (free from most fire departments). If your employer provides ERT, join. Take First Aid class and any advanced courses. Get trained in amateur/ham disaster radio (the license is only $15, handy-talkies start around $150) and join a local ARES/RACES team especially one that provides regular training and drills (the larger the better). Keep a pair of FRS radios on hand too (<$50). BOL is great if you can afford it; but a bug out kit for mobile evacuation is essential even if you have a BOL. Train in martial arts, but also add hand/hand combat (fine motor skills versus gross). Get trained in defensive handgun and/or rifle and/or shotgun. (A big facility means better opportunities to network. I recommend Front Sight in Nevada.) Being trained in these areas will give you networking options and make you a valued asset to the community now and when shtf.

  28. Doomsday scenario,or more properly SHTF day, is not in future it began yesteday.
    You cannot have enough ammunition or firepower if within any 100-20 miles from population of 500,000 and above.
    Every militia unit worthy of being such knows it and only by resupply and local arms aiding them can they even begin to bring order to an areaq

  29. The idea of preparing a shelter to survive an onslaught of zombies is more than ludicrous. No one is going back to 14th Century Bubonic Plague survival mode–the buffalo are long gone, and if any one survived long enough, the Red Chinese would be rolling up your roads attracted by your infra red heat signals to redistribute the wealth. Bugging out is sheltering in place. Apparently that is why New Orleans made absolutely certain no one remained in habitable housing. If it all falls, everyone falls down, better start working on keeping society in place.

  30. I have watched the dooms day show a few times and grit my teeth too seeing people exposed to what one has for others to see.. Even in a small town people will know who you are. As for the ratings and score system,, some I see higher values than the real world and others seem low.. They don’t give a person the credit for just getting it done if need too when the time comes..

    We are set up in fine shape for our family,, with everything needed,,, Since I was raised by my Grandparents,, I know all the old school systems to get by without town supplies. I was 12 years old before I saw a light bulb light up and 15 before I saw a tv.. Trust me when I say we would all become better people if we had to turn back the hands of time 120 years,,, and focus of living and not playing.

  31. If you have to get out of Dodge and do not have a place you can bug out to then consider a large bug out bag for each and everyone in your group. Basic necessities should include food and water, camping/hiking equipment, water filtration, basic tools for building shelters, hunting implements, traps and snares, and above all knowledge and training. Get out there with your family or friends and practice as if staying out there would be your only option. Stay out for a few nights at first, become comfortable in your environment and learn to use whatever resources are out there.
    Stay off the main roads when you are bugging out, there’s plenty of State land out there, become familiar with these places. I have been out walking in the woods all day and have not come across or seen anyone. Good luck.

  32. THE WORLD IS FULL OF KINGS AND QUEENS WHO LL BLIND UR EYES AND STEAL UR DREAMS, “AMERICA HOW I LOVE HER SO” BUG OUT ON FOOT EVERY BODY CARRIES 40 LBS. and the U S A flag baby,DIG i know if it is a foriegn, enemy i know and u know the government will help its people to a certain x-tend. so anyway water,medical and the ability to move camp at moments notice, so u can only bringweapons, medical and water something to make clean and thats it this will be a major bloodclot got to seek out friendlys fast where do people get all this money to get everything plus more for the bugout and dont tell me they work for it u see t v some of these people have litterally 1 million dollors invested if not more, it broke me getting weapons for my crew KING CRAWDAD


  34. Interesting and informative comments. After 12 yrs in the Marines and Naval Services and a couple yrs with Emergency Services I have been wondering about all this for a little while. Our local and county governments are ill prepared for long term regional disasters. Preparation consists of planning sessions and calling the governor. Getting a population of a medium sized town prepared for a disaster is like telling them that can’t use computers or iPhones anymore. They just look at you funny and give you a wide berth. I’ll still continue planning for community involvement but won’t hold my breath. Networking is key in these type of planning scenarios. Good luck everyone.

  35. It is impossible to clear land out in the middle of nowhere and then not have the feds spot a clearing or smoke from a winter fire. The same foliage that camouflages your site also gives any intruders an ability to sneak up on you. Using propane is only as good as there is fuel in the tank, while wood is a renewable but traceable resource.

    No matter what facet of preparedness you put at the top of your priority list, there will usually be some way for someone else to hang you with it. Under “Shelter”, having your spot not visible from any road is good, but somewhere along the line, getting all your building materials and supplies to that spot are going to leave a trail, even at the intersection of a road. The same soil conditions that make for a quicker overgrowth recovery might also make it impossible to navigate during or after a heavy rain. Then, your safety spot can become a prison.

    There is no perfect solution to this. We are all being forced to test our wits because some group of sociopathic parasites has determined that, in their minds, it is time to rid their planet of all the cockroaches.. Talk about the pot calling the kettle black.

    Lastly, in the “X-Factor” section, the pickup truck looks like it has fuel cans mounted right below an area that would be the first to receive hostile fire. Hello.

    For all those out there who have so far had the brains enough to realize there is a problem and the courage to try to do something about it, all I can say is that people need to learn who to trust and who NOT to. Law enforcement personnel are going to be one of the first groups challenged for two reasons. The shaved-headed automatons who love to be the first ones to don the SWAT attire are just a part of the problem; they might as well just paint concentric red circles on their chests. The others, the ones that had enough warm brain cells to remember their oaths, those are the guys I have sympathy for. It will be very difficult for them, because they have a conscience, to discern the difference between “conscious citizens” and those brain-dead zombies who probably voted for Obama and are out cruising for more free stuff to steal. On the flip side, the conscious citizenry can’t always tell which of the LEOs are worth saving ……. and the feds and the globalists know all this. They are counting on their plan to shred community ties over the last 40-50 years to reach a point where no one trusts anyone and we all start shooting at each other. A house divided.

  36. Lot’s of interesting suggestions, here. I believe that a large group makes opsec impossible. Stationary targets will ALWAYS be overrun. Sure, you will be able to defend yourself from the wandering few, who are starving and thirsty. A larger, more determined force, though, will eat your lunch….and dinner. Think about the Cong in Vietnam. They were successful, because they were underground and were able to leave at a moment’s notice. Your sustainable farm will not withstand a determined force.

    ALWAYS be prepared to leave your current location and have a place to go. Also have the ability to do so for one year, minimum. If things truly do go bad, 1/3 of the population will be dead in 90 days. Another third within 1 year. At that point, the dust will begin to settle. THEN you can start to rebuild and possibly think about sustainability. It will NOT be pretty or humane. Just my 2cents.

  37. One drone, one >poof!<. There is no bug-out. There's only paranoid bugs, victims of the lead poisoning from vehicle emissions before leaded fuel was outlawed. Nukes and zombies will not take care of you. Darwin will.

  38. I have no funds for a bug out location, have no family outside my wife that even wants to talk about (much less prepare for what I feel lies ahead) so my plan is to hunker down in place. I live in a small town about 30-min drive from a large city, along a main highway going out from that city into the mountains. I figure a llootersuch will feed on the city before leaving & hopefully that will weed out their numbers as the face armed citizens defending their homes. I have access to a large lake & have a plethora of water filtration gear. I have a solar oven so I can cook without power or smoke , a red flag showing your location in a an SHTF situation. I agree that trust is the most important issue for if we are to survive a people who stand for the Constitution & liberty, we cannot become those that would kill others to take their stuff (unless they fired first). If we become blood-thirty killers, then what are we trying to defend?

  39. Speaking from experience, it is almost impossible to be prepared for any one scenario(s), However there is a lot of good intel you could gather from these folks that have been drilling for sometime, One common ground with most of these comments is community or team, that is essential, as in a single cell survival it is you but so is all the mission objectives and functions, a well prepared group who know each other’s best and *worst* along with drilling and interacting, knowing fully that if need be they can go operational at a seconds notice, will be a deciding factor in surviving just getting to your first location/OZ, there should be multiple locations even if some require squatting temporarily as you move to points destined. Also at least a Medic Kit with light field surgery capabilities and portable ceramic water filtering can help in the event of going boots, Traffic getting out of dodge maybe next to impossible even days after the initial panic. Alternate routes like power line roads and fire roads may help so familiarize yourselves with those….There’s hundreds if not thousands of books on this subject and knowing a few regional bushwhackers may be a good/better strategy, if the trust factor is present. Also look into bushwhacker courses theres a few of those that can fill your tool bags with un-packaged non commercial tools.


  41. Rural bugout spots!!!!!!!!!!! This is what everyone in America plans to do when the SHTF. Rural is going to become Urban very quickly. Non prepping panic attackers plan to just head for the hills and just move into an old abandoned shack and live their lives undisturbed. In fact everyone is going to be a modern day Grizzly Adams. This type of ignorance is where the biggest problem will come. Steal, fight, or kill for food water and shelter. You have it, they want it and they will not stop until they have it. Prepping for your own food, water, and shelter is important. However, what you need to really prepare yourself for is the fact that you will need to use deadly force. I know most people say oh ya I have no problem with that… Really? Just by saying that is a pretty good indication that you are not prepared for it. Killing someone who is starving and looking for shelter in order to protect what is yours is a pretty hard pill to swallow. Then there is a whole lot of questions you need to ask yourself after the shot. What then? What do you do to clean up if you plan to stay? Sounds gruesome I realize but reality does not instently dispose of bodies like in the movies. War is not as clean as clean as the gun the helps facilitate it. And this is what we are talking about… War! Here on our own land, around us, and amoung us. Not knowing who to trust, not following any rules of engagement, man against man for survival. If lucky there is 2% of the population in America that can actually live off the land but not under circumstances where 98% of the population is looking to take what they have. When the SHTF are you really prepared? Could you ever really be prepared???

  42. The key, as already mentioned, is finding a group of TRUSTED friends to support and survive with. Two thoughts on increasing the likelihood of bonding with such a group. First, you need to have a valuable skillset for group survival – become a licensed EMT, learn welding and carpentry, develop real rifleman skills, etc. Every member of the group needs to be able to contribute a valuable skill or they are merely takers/users. To connect with others willing to take responsibility for their own safety and survival, spend time at the range, and while developing your rifleman skills, talk to others their, make friends. Don’t force it – that breeds suspicion. Ever try cowboy shooting? Great bunch of people, friendly, honest, and willing to take personal responsibility.

  43. You didn’t mention emergency medical supplies. First aid kits, aspirin, Imodium, splint materials, etc. People get sick and they get injured. You absolutely must have first aid training as well because your family doctor won’t be available unless he’s included in you group.

  44. Great article and hopefully will bring others to start thinking about their and family members survival. Several points, motivation, remember, you cannot rely on the government to provide for you.
    Medical, take some training in first aid. All prepping is for naught if an infection disables you as the leader.
    If you can not find the great location, plan like a green beret Special Forces do, delevop a community network for security, include medical staff, security, committee and protection.
    Water is a key factor for survival, look at having a well in your area, a great community will work together to take care of this need, or if you have one, an opportunity to bring the community together.
    Trust is something that has to be built. Evaluate who you want on your side, not everyone is going to make it, but those that are prepared, can get a great start on survival.
    Best of luck to all of us.

  45. Three of greatest dangers after you get to your bunker are boredom, stress, and loneliness.
    Unread books and old favorites as well along with solar powered PC’s dvd games, and if possible a ham or at least a solar ,hand cranked radio to keep in touch with outside happenings.
    One of best stress relievers is luxury foods and as treats not a weekly planned ritual
    Candy, canned fruits, home made cakes, wines beers and a fine sipping whiskey.

  46. As one who has always been aware, old Boy Scout Motto, Prepare for the Worst and Hope for the best. I am reasonably trained or self-educated and can and do think out of the box.. I live in a home on a knoll on a fairly busy country highway. 10″ multilayer walls which would stop small arms, .223 Penetrators are questionable, Surplus WWII 30-06 API, well??? .50 Caliber, ouch…I purchase can goods on sale only, most every time I go shopping. I buy some dry goods. My well is at least 100 feet, without a generator to operate may be moot.. No gas, no generator.. Luckily a river is some 250 yards down 230 steps, but carrying 5 gallon buckets up here would be painful. Boil 5 Minutes, filter Boy Scout stuff. Okay.. I am surround by Federal and State Land, two tracks everywhere. Wildlife for the harvesting and few neighbors, all Redneck. I live on the second floor, that is how the house is designed.. So I have the high ground advantage.. I live alone most the time, but am known by family and friend as prepared at least reasonably.. Unfortunately with the influx of population, the food stores will not last long, and convincing those as to at least have a two week supply on hand is not working. Even though they know… I have no intent of Boogying.. But stacking up as well as some stocking up… Best of luck for you and yours..

  47. I have read the article and comments and have a few thoughts.
    First, like another commenter, I notice that no mention is made of medical supplies at the bug-out location. A full medical supply kit, including basic surgical tools (in case of gunsot wounds, etc.) and a military field surgery manual, with enough bandages and other supplies for several people is the minimum you should have.
    Again, with the large, airy windows, you have a perfect situation for someone to snipe you from any angle and come take over your shelter. Understand that in a real SHTF situation, the personality traits of people in normal conditions will be magnified. A person who is already not opposed to, say, taking what isn’t his, will have no problems hurting or killing you to do so under more extreme conditions.
    As for the money to buy some property or other as a bug out location, yes that would be nice and a luxury many of us can’t afford. Alternatives? Hate to say it, but if you live near any sort of wilderness-like area (mountains, forests, etc.) where there are seasonal cabins and such, you have move-in ready accomodations. Yes, they belong to someone else. Yes, that makes taking them illegal. Under these type of circumstances though, ownership becomes what you can physically hold under your control. Unfortunately, the wealthy city dweller with his head firmly in his ass won’t make it out of the melee that every urban area will become so he won’t be needing that cabin in the woods that you have reconoitered and determined as suitable in a basic sense anyway.
    Here’s another overlooked area. No matter where your bugout location is and how well it is stocked, it is inevitable that at some point you will have to go out of it to retrieve something. What is your vehicle situation? That import sedan/coupe or small/midsize “SUV” might be great for scootin around town now, but it won’t make it in the world of which we are speaking here. You need ability to leave paved roads if necessary, carry as much cargo as might be needed and be able to easily repair anything that might fail on the vehicle. I will not suggest any one vehicle, but use those criteria in assessing what you now drive versus what you will need to have.
    In closing, the use of a catchy term like “X Factor” is nice for a tv show, but you need to take that long list of unknowns MUCH more seriously because those are the things that WILL kill you.

  48. Any bug out location is only as good as getting there alive without extra people following, and having the courage to go it alone if necessary.
    Otherwise this was a good article, not as far out as the Doomsday preppers….

  49. Bunker, underground. NBC filters with redundancy. Deep well with 12vdc pumping to storage tanks. Water filtration systems like the pur water pitcher (worlds finest and also the cheapest)and extra filters. Lots of soap and toilet tissue. Firepower for perimeter. Women and children only in shelter upon attack.
    Communications, short wave and walkie talkies for all outside defenders. The right firearms with stored ammo. Preferably NATO arms and rounds, those will always be available. Solar is now cheap, less than $1.00 per watt. Large propane tank for generators. Kerosene for stove/cooking. Wood heater, you can always find stuff to burn.
    Non perishables for a year. Garden. Tanks with 12vdc pump for aeration for Tilapia. Stores of cayenne pepper and sugar with containers for curing meat. Smoker for curing meat and fish. Surplus NBC gas masks. Iodine tabs for nuclear repression. Medical kit with surgical tools. (you can do it if you have to) Vitamins and meds as needed. Professionally prepared (not home made) Colloidal silver for internal and external infection. Chickens for eggs, if possible, not for meat. Sources for Vitamin C. Fishing equipment including unslaked lime or ‘telephone’ because other people who are starving arent going to obey the game and fish laws. Warning signs with ‘international language’ such as pix of your dobermans or German shepherds or pit bulls and weapons. Small boat and bicycles. You can do this. Pick a topic every month and start gathering. Ive been doing it all my life although I never knew why.

  50. I have seen many of the episodes of “Doomsday Preppers”, they can be viewed on . Though many of the suggestions given there are good, their evaluations are lacking.
    As for your friends bug out location(BOL), I’m sure it’s nice and even secure to a point. However, as you stated, your “friend never shops in town for supplies”, this is a huge error on his part. One doesn’t have to reveal much about themselves to get a read on their neighbors and knowing who is around not only sheds light on what or who to watch out for but who one can depend on if needed for what ever reason.

    A gateway marked or unmarked and perimeter fencing is a dead giveaway. Instead if they were to rely on natural barriers, rivers, mountains, densely forested areas with a lot of dead fall or hazardous terrain of some sort, it would be less obvious that this was being used as a BOL. Also, limited traffic to and from this location with no clear pathway indicating that there is anything of interest there.

    Having propane tanks is nice. But in a shtf situation how are they going to be refilled? Or will they in such a situation? Even if you are filling them yourself, you are relying on others to provide the propane from somewhere. As well as any form of generation that depends on fossil fuel.

    Though having a store of food and supplies is good, one can have to much and become encumbered with such. The problem with most preppers today is that they are relying on one location to store all of their supply and fortification. This can become a problem as well. Essentially what they are doing is “bugging in” only at a different location. What is to happen if they are forced to bug out of their bug out location?

    For this reason I contend it is best to yes have a BOL but also plan on becoming somewhat nomadic. Be prepared to move at a moments notice, at all times. And have stores on any and all possible routs you might take. Learn wilderness survival skills such as of course hunting and fishing. But also learn first aid and beyond “first aid”, shelters, fires, navigation, herbology as well as mineralogy. Learn what is out there naturally to fill the needs you might face. Simply everything you can buy in a store comes from somewhere or is made from natural occurring substances. Educate yourself on how to accomplish the things that are otherwise provided for you now. Because they wont be provided later in a shtf situation.

    I teach wilderness survival, both online and in personal settings. Of which we will be holding a wilderness survival meet, focusing on bugging out, May 20th through the 25th, here in Montana. You can find details about this free event on which is a site with mainly just maps. The event is on the Montana page there, as well as on the events on . This event is designed to help you evaluate your bug out bag and plan and to share wilderness survival skills. As mentioned this event is free other than your transportation to and from the event and your own supplies and equipment. This meet is also an on the move event, in that we will be hiking to several mountain lakes foraging as we go and not being in one location more than two nights.

  51. I live a short distance from Feinstein’s house. I drive past it almost every day and guess what? She’s got armed guard provided by SFPD (at taxpayer’s expense) parked in front of her gate 24 hours a day and it’s been that way for years. She is wealthy beyond belief and we have to pay for her protection, but we’re not allowed to have any for ourselves.

  52. All well and good, but the key to survival would be a small cooperative group, ideally with varying talents and skills. Food, water and shelter are the foundation, but sustainability is a must. Mechanical and solar equipment will eventually fail [hopefully not]. After getting the first layer completed, plan for the long haul. Most of the preppers have no backup or alternative supply/equipment. Too many concentrate it all in one building. That would be absolutely disasterous in case of a fire. Most do not cross train, either. Hopefully all will survive !!!

  53. @Bill

    I think you succinctly summed it up–Everybody has to prepare according to their particular situation (this alone most people do not accomplish) and then just pray for the best…


  54. When it comes down to it, that’s all you can do dude. Different problem scenarios dictate different strategies, and preparation. Being in a crowded area is asking for it, and even in a desolete area, you have to sleep sometime. You need multiple bodies with a unified purpose. Our family structure is so loosely based that we can’t generally make it through a long Thanksgiving or Christmas weekend without discordance. Those values are the root of many of our cultural issues in the first place. If you can’t see it ever working out with your disfunctional family members, cut your losses now, and adopt another family…….at least as far as prepping goes. Those with deversified skills, and a positive attitude. The trust will take care of itself. It could always be worse……….you could be in Feinstein’s family.

  55. Interesting article indeed. However, what about those of us that unfortunately do not have a “bug-out” option at our disposal but are well prepared nonetheless in our given urban residence (and not publicized) to make it through a “moderate” SHTF situation? I am asking because I am just now beginning to invest both time and money into this seemingly imminent endeavor and continue to do research as we speak.

  56. Trust is key… the only people you can TRULY trust is your immediate family. anyone else could turn on you. I hate to say it but it would probably be just like the TV show SURVIVOR. Phony alliances and backstabbing just to survive. I’m single and can’t convince my family to help prep. I pretty much have to go at it alone. I’ve been prepping since 911 2001 and have just about all that I need. Now I just need people I can trust. I told my mother to watch the movie; Take Shelter, but all that did was make her more terrified and not want to talk about it at all, however I am prepping for her anyway…my brother just scoffs at me even though he has a family. To Csharp, always trust your heavenly father and you’ll never be alone.

  57. I wish there were a way to establish prepper co-ops (for lack of a better word). One of the biggest keys to survival is going to be relationships, in my opinion. If one has a big enough family, this is probably a given. For those of us who are single, it would be nice to find a group to get “in” with. Could have basic requirements like, you have to have your gun/ammo, or have to contribute certain goods and/or hours at the ‘compound’ to keep any membership intact. Get to know the names and faces now before the SHTF. There are meet up groups but they aren’t tight enough, in my opinion. At least I haven’t found any. I would be more than willing to put in the time to prove my willingness and commitment to a bugout site. Even if I got my own site, it would be nice to network and know of fellow preppers I can trust, and who can trust me. I understand the risk of being ‘known’ is probably what keeps this from happening. Just throwing the idea out there for consideration.

  58. Unfortunately, even if you have this kind of money, places like this are rare and hard to come by. But the main reason I’m replying to the post is to comment that you are not paying enough attention to the unknowns, what you call the x-factor. (I haven’t seen the show to which you refer.) At any rate, I contend that planning is indispensible, but you have to plan for the unknown more than anything else. For example, you say that there is good visibility in all directions from the house on the hill. That also means that the house can be spotted from a distance, unknown to the inhabitants. The gate on the road is a dead giveaway. You say that they should stock up on wood for hasty window re-inforcement. In the scenario you describe, who wants to have yet another chore to do in a hurry? There should be several secure locations on the property itself. They should train for possible scenarios. The list is endless; you can always think of something you forgot if you try hard enough. What about medical supplies? I contend that stocking up on food and water, and getting a windmill and solar, is only the most rudimentary of preparations. I rate them a 10. (Just guessing, but you get the point.)

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