Monday, August 22, 2016
The long slow bug out to the woods
Do any of you harbor expectations of bugging out into the woods if things get bad? This is what it's starting to look like right now. In this NY Times article the homeless are invading the forests. Locals aren't very happy about it. There's been problems with trash, forest fires, and generally bad conduct.
This is what conditions are like when most people are still getting by. Imagine how messed up things would get in the forest if the situation went seriously south.
Imagine how things could be in the National Forests in the heavily populated Northeast? From Boston to the White Mountains is just an afternoon's drive. People living illegally in National Forests is nothing new to me. For years I've been running into long term campers in ramshackle trailers and RVs while gathering firewood with a dead and down permit. Sometimes they'd just move deeper into the woods once discovered. They pretty much all disappear when the snow comes. Winter here is brutal.
There is a lot of private forest land in my area. The locals would not take too kindly to squatters suddenly appearing on their property, cutting trees and piling up trash. Before long they would be moved out at gunpoint.
It is possible to live out in the woods. I've known a few over the years. One guy was a Vietnam Vet who never readjusted to life in civilization. His camps had low footprints, were deeper in the woods, and very hard to find. There was one young man who lived in primitive shelters who made a small income from trapping. Sadly, he died a few years after I met him from cancer.
Living as an individual or a small group can be done. Care must be taken to get far off the beaten path and to keep a low profile. Larger groups would most likely be discovered and considered a problem. Forget about being able to drive somewhere towing your 5th wheel and setting up house down a logging road. You might get away with it for a couple weeks, but after that authorities will take notice.
If you do plan on life in the woods, better have the woodcraft and knowledge to make it work. Be aware that it's a harsh existence.