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Saturday, October 1, 2011

Friends and Relatives invading the Bug Out Location

Is it a real fear? It’s a common subject on the survivalist type forums. Who, if anyone, do you let in to your bug out location? You scrimp, save, and get prepared. You might have food to last you and your family a whole year. What happens if all your friends and family show up in a times of trouble? That food might only last a few weeks.

Will it really happen that way? Probably not, but like much else: it depends.

Can all those people actually make it to your place should a disaster happen? If they are within walking distance, better put up a few more bags of beans. If they have to drive hundreds of miles to get to your place, they might not be able to show up at all. If the disaster is sudden like a major earthquake or flash flood, the roads and bridges may be impassable. Even during something like a hurricane that provides hours and days of warning, traffic can make evacuation difficult.

What happens at your place now? Most people have power outages, ice storms, floods, blizzards or other local and regional disasters. When the lights go out, does everyone show up at your door, begging bowl in hand? Do most people muddle though on their own?

If you live in a densely populated area, it doesn’t matter how large your preps are. Nobody can take care of a city’s population. I’ve heard stories about people who feared to run their generator during the aftermath of hurricane Katrina. The generator would get stolen, or their supplies taken. People who could have lights at night kept them off to avoid attracting attention.

Fortunately, I live at my bug out location. I bugged out of town over 20 years ago. That’s the key, get out ahead of the crowd, be it 10 minutes ahead or 20 years ahead. The devil takes the hindmost. During blizzards and ice storms, my few neighbors pretty much take care of them selves. They’ve come by and asked if I needed anything.

Should my family and friends show up at my door, I’d be relieved. If they don’t show up here, I’d worry about them. They are smart enough to load up their cars with supplies before heading to my place. When they get here, it’d be share and share alike. We’d eat a lot of stone soup. Everyone should be able to find something to throw into the pot.

There are enough tools to keep everyone busy. Firewood needs to be gathered and chopped. Meals need to be cooked. Kids need to be taken care of. I’ve enough firearms and fishing gear so some wild good could be added to the pot. With more people, jobs can split up, and there can always be someone looking out for trouble. If that means my supplies run out faster, so be it. There’s also more people to hunt, gather, and farm.

Is that the best plan? Maybe, maybe not. All I know is that I’ll sleep better if I don’t turn friends and relatives away.



  1. The "farmstead" is my folks' place, and that is my bugout location. It is pretty remote, tucked away in a nice, rarely visited little corner, yet only an hour away from my house. There is a lake and river nearby, and they have a well. My supplies can be quickly loaded into the truck, and hauled up there. If not, a couple days' hike will get us there. I'm ready for either case...

  2. Craig: It's good to have a plan in place. Sounds like a good location.

  3. The issue isn't what happens if "all your friends and family show up". It is how quickly even a few people effect the equation. For example; if I have enough food for 4 people for 12 months, I have enough food for 6 people for 8 months, or 8 people for 6 months. Going from 4 people to 8 isn't many, but if a long term disaster hits outside of the growing season taking in too many people is asking for hunger and disease. And it isn't a problem that can be solved with an, "We all will chip in." attitude. That is a basic requirement in any disaster. The question will be "What is the minimum that my family has to have to survive this situation?" When you have answered that, you can determine what you will do when friends and family show up.

    I am not trying to be negative, but one of the keys to survival is realistically examining the situation.

    p.s. That "carload" will include people clothes, pets, personal items etc. How much food, medicine, etc, will they actually be bringing?

  4. re Hurricane Katrina 2005
    This nice man told two good friends that they and
    their families could come at his house to avoid
    Hurricane Katrina. They told their good friends.
    More than thirty people threw themselves on his
    stored foods with glad cries and ate it all in two days.

  5. Okay . . . everyone has different considerations. I think my isolation is a factor in limiting the number of people who I can reasonably or unreasonably expect to show up here.

  6. I personally not letting anyone come to my location. I have enough for me and my father who I help care for. I have enough food,meds and ammo for 2 people. You can't help everyone and their famly an friends. More people means less supplies. The grasshopper and the ant comes to mind