What’s Your Survival Plan?

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Do you have a plan for what to do when SHTF?

You should. You remember that whole ‘fail to plan, plan to fail’ adage that you hated hearing from your teachers/boss? Well in this case, it’s ‘fail to plan, you f-ing die’. I don’t see that becoming a bumper sticker any time soon though.

You’ve got your survival backpack/bug out bag packed and your EDC ready. But where are you going? If you’re into prepping or survival or just like to plan ahead, you know you need a “bug out plan”. So what’s yours?

A lot of people daydream but I think my mind works a little differently. I plan. When I was a kid, being dragged around shopping with my mother, I daydreamed about “what if I got locked in this store with a ‘bad guy’?” You know, Home Alone style. What would be the most defensible position? How could I even the odds against a larger, stronger opponent that outnumbers me? Where and how would I set booby traps?

If you met me, I’m a pretty normal guy, I just grew up on MacGyver, the Goonies, and Home Alone. In fact, I have a signed picture of MacGyver in my office right now. So I’m all about using your surroundings to your advantage.

Which brings me back to the question, what is your bug out plan? I’ve actually turned this into a game at bars to see what people would do in the case of, say, a zombie apocalypse. I’m not saying that that scenario is probable but it’s a lot more fun than mass revolts due to the collapse of the dollar or sun flares. I don’t advocate for anything in particular, I just like being prepared.

So here are my plans. Yes, I have two. You should always have a plan B. And I don’t mind sharing these with you because A) it has to actually happen, 2) you have to live near me, and D) if it did happen, I couldn’t do it all on my own so I could use another prepper. Did anyone catch the Home Alone reference?

Plan ABug out plan for survival

Home Depot: Most people I ask say that the first place they will go is Walmart or Target or the grocery store. But that’s where everyone will be. And if the apocalypse is coming, I sure as hell don’t want to be in Walmart when it happens.

But most people aren’t thinking of building a deck when SHTF. So I’ll be at Home Depot.

Think about it; it’s extremely defensible. There are only like 5 entrances and you already have all of the equipment and material you need to barricade those. Grab a flat dolly and get to work! “Oh but what about food and water? Home Depot doesn’t have that! We can’t live off of nails and socket wrenches.” Have you ever been to HD (I’m abbreviating, saying the name over and over seems redundant to me)? There are all sorts of snacks and drinks up near the register. And my HD always has a hotdog cart outside. So that’s the short term.

Long term, you can plant a garden on the roof with the *gasp* SEEDS and PLANTS that are right there, and you can use the garden area, which is completely gated in, for livestock. The parking lot provides plenty of open space so you can see anyone coming up.

Even if you get a lot of people in your party, there’s plenty of room. You can sleep at the top of the shelving racks to be even safer.

So we’ve got a large, secure building that’s easily defensible for even a small group, all the supplies you need to build basically anything, seeds and plants to grow food, a small supply of food for short term, secure garden area away that can’t easily be seen, and a large, fully gated space for quarantine/livestock/frisbee golf.

And my HD is right across from Gander Mountain so we could stop in there and grab some camping and hunting supplies like a few SHTF guns. And maybe some Gatorade gum.

  • Food – Short term, snacks and hot dogs. Long term, farming and raising livestock. Hunting in nearby woods at my HD (don’t you wish your HD was as cool as mine), foraging in nearby stores.
  • Water – Water fountain? Not sure about this one. Might be able to tap into the water main and purify the water yourself. Open to suggestions on that one. Rainwater collecting.
  • Shelter – Large hurricane proof building, materials to build, repair, and maintain. Hell, you could probably build another HD if needed just with the materials inside.
  • Protection – Big concrete block box with 5 entry points and a large gated area. Unobstructed views from roof for miles.
  • Other – Plenty of secure space, room to grow food, materials to build windmills, water collection devices, weapons/traps, etc.

Eh? Good idea, right? Just wait for the next plan…

Plan BTEOTWAWKI survivalist escape plan

Cruise Ship: I’m lucky enough to live near a cruise ship port so this may not be feasible for many of you but hear me out.

Cruise ships are made to be fully self contained communities. Sure they need to resupply but everything you need for a community is there. Bedrooms? Check. Dining room? Check. Plenty of bathrooms? Check. Medical facility? Check. You see where I’m going with this? There’s even a “jail” on many of these ships for my buddy Ian unruly passengers.

And even if you have a large group of people, there is plenty of space. Use the pool for rainwater collecting or raising your own tilapia. Recreation areas, room to grow food, space for livestock/children, plenty of fishing, it’s got it all. And, as long as we’re talking zombies, pretty freaking defensible. I don’t know if zombies can swim (that’s like asking if unicorns are allergic to fairy dust) but even if they can, it’s damn near impossible to climb a hull that big. Only thing you really need to worry about is pirates. And scurvy.

There are cruises that last months to an entire year. So if, I’m assuming, some rich retiree can live on one of these things for a whole year, it shouldn’t be that difficult for a group of refugees to survive fairly comfortably. I’d say, as nothing even close to an expert, that you could sustain at least a few hundred people indefinitely.

  • Food – Farming on upper decks, fishing, raising livestock, foraging in port
  • Water – Seawater purified through boiling or evaporation, rainwater collecting
  • Shelter – You’re floating on it. Comfy beds, privacy, bathrooms (not sure how well these would work without power. You might have to just squat off your balcony. But that’s still a personal bathroom!)
  • Protection – With the exception of pirates, storms, and angry seagulls, there really isn’t anything that can get to you. And the storms would have to be pretty serious.
  • Other – Um these dinghies were made for fun! There’s a rock wall, gym equipment, sun decks, slides, clubs, auditoriums, casinos… granted some of these are less fun without power but it’s still a hell of a lot better than sitting in a survival camp.

Well those are my plans. I understand that they are based on a perfect world where I could get to the HD/ship, that there wouldn’t already be a hostile group there, that I’m in a larger group, and that I don’t die from the first meteor to hit Earth. Or whatever happens. What do you think? Got anything better?

3 thoughts on “What’s Your Survival Plan?”

  1. I like the cruise ship idea. Fill it up with fuel in the beginning and you might be able to find a place where the S has not HTF yet. And as for auxiliary bathroom facilities, that is nothing new, is it? Where did the nautical term “poop deck” come from?

    • My long term plan was to head down to the Bahamas, find a small, sparsely populated island, and start clearing it to set up a base camp. Move on to bigger islands as you grow. There are a lot of private islands in the Caribbean that would most likely be uninhabited.

  2. Water supply at HD: If it is on the public water supply that may not survive. If it is out in the country, as I suppose many are (yours, as described) then it has to have its own water supply, and it probably would not take a very big generator to run the pump.


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