Bugging Out: A Beginner’s Guide
Wow, can you believe it’s Posts of the Week Wednesday already? I don’t know about you but this week has flown by. I feel like I just wrote the Getting Started Prepping POWW yesterday!
If you’re new to our little survival blog, every week we (I) write about the best articles, videos, and infographics we’ve read/seen this week on topics from prepping to homesteading to survival skills and everything in between.
But enough about us, let’s jump right into this week’s theme: Bugging Out.
There are plenty of resources out there on how to make a bug out bag and what to put in it. But what do you actually do when SHTF? You’ve got the gear but where do you go? How do you get there? What do you do when you’re there?
These are all questions that should be answered before you’re in that situation.
Bug Out Plan
Like I said in the last POWW, having a bug out plan, or just an emergency plan in general, should be your first priority. Start out by asking yourself these questions (we’ll be addressing a few of them in this post).
To get yourself in the mindset of why you should be developing a plan and what dangers there might be in the times of crisis that you may have not considered, check out this post from Ultimate Bug Out Bags.
Bug Out Location
Your first decision should be where you‘re going. All of your other answers will be dependent on your bug out location. Are you bugging in (staying at your home)? Will you be traveling far? Is it land you own? Can you start making improvements (fortifications, storing caches, building shelter, etc) now? Will this bug out location be your homestead? If not, how long will you be there?
If possible, scout the area out now. Find water sources, identify edible/medicinal/poisonous plants, note the best spots for shelter, defense, etc. You don’t want to get there and find out that it’s riddled with fire ants and poison oak or that it’s prone to flooding.
Bug Out Route
So now you know where you’re going. But how do you get there? If a disaster happens, you can expect the roads to be gridlocked or possibly washed out completely. Planning for this and having multiple routes mapped out is essential in case one or more are inaccessible. The Sargent explains planning your bug out route pretty thoroughly in this post so make sure to give it a read.
And don’t forget about walking routes. The roads may be crowded but railroad tracks and hiking trails aren’t likely to be as congested.
Bug Out Vehicle
This point has been the source of many interesting conversations for me. I’ve heard arguments for everything from armored RVs to dirt bikes to Cessnas. Each have valid points, it’s up to you to decide what works for your situation (budget, family size, bug out location, etc). I don’t think there’s any perfect answer. Bob does a great job of breaking each bug out vehicle option down in his post.
Bug Out Shelter
Lastly, you’ve got a plan, you know where you’re going, you know how to get there, and you know what vehicle you will be using to get there. Now what do you do once you’re there? This is completely based on your individual bug out location. If you’ve decided to shack up with some relatives who live deep in the country or you’ve got an awesome shipping container cabin in the woods, you’re pretty set. If your plan is a little more rustic and your location doesn’t have a permanent shelter, you’re going to need to create your own, whether by setting up a tent, building a lean to, or climbing a tree (wouldn’t suggest this). Shane from Lonewolf Wilderness Survival School put together a great video on the basics of bug out camping locations:
That’s all we’ve got for you this week! Did we miss anything? Have you read any other great articles on bugging out lately? Let us know in the comments.