Is It Safe Living Within 50 Miles Of 1-Million People After SHTF?

Over the years I’ve often addressed the general topic of population density versus one’s security, well-being, and ability to survive following a long lasting SHTF event. Let’s have a new look at the issue, but this time from the standpoint of living in a seemingly safe geographical location – except that you’re still within about 50 miles of a region with 1 million or more people… Heck, even 500K or 100K people, right?

The scenario is the following…

Let’s hypothetically say that you are living rural, or in a region of suburbia with a relatively low population density. You feel pretty safe. You may even be living in a very small town, or off the beaten path to the extent that it ‘feel’s like you’re far away from ‘the city’.

But here’s the flip side:
Within an approximate 40 minute drive there is either a city, or a population-dense metropolitan area of 1 million or more people. You and your neighbors may even commute into this region for work…

For your reference, here is a list of United States MSA (Metropolitan Statistical Areas) with 1 million or more people:


Statistic: Population of the largest metropolitan areas in the U.S. as of 2019 (in 1,000s) | Statista

Of note, there are 326 cities in the United States with 100,000 people or more.
(Wikipedia list)

The question:
So, you’re bugging-in. You’re staying put at your place. Will you be safe during a long-lasting SHTF event if within ~50 miles of a MSA or city region?

Yes, I know, your first concern would be the people in your own neighborhood and locality. Are they prepared? Maybe some, maybe not. However instead of that angle, lets discuss the ‘city folk’ if you will…the ‘Golden Horde’ as it has been called. Will it pose a threat?

To answer that question, you might consider the following in your decision matrix:

How severe is the SHTF event? Has it crippled essential services (obviously a huge factor)?

How long has the event been unfolding, and how long until these people ‘truly’ become desperate and reach a point of serious ‘unrest’?

What will the 1 million people do? Will they sit and wait for help, or for an ‘end’ to the event? Or will some of them take to the road? How many will stay and wait for help versus how many will hit the road?

For those who take to the road while they search for essential services and supplies, will they potentially make it to your region 50 miles away? Got enough gas? What about clogged roads?

Driving versus walking? Most people these days are pretty obese and probably can’t even walk a mile or two… Though some could make it 50 miles, probably a couple, or several days if they’re well equipped.

Note that bicycles will get you many miles in one day.

Geographical features are also a consideration. Mountain ranges and rivers would impede many.

A number of factors come into play on how far city folks will travel. The type of event, weather, available resources (food and water?), etc..

How far might they get in a vehicle or on foot, and would they even become a potential threat to where you specifically live?

Depending on the SHTF event, the mortality rate particularly within the MSA’s and city regions of the unprepared general population could conceivably be in excess of 25% in the short term without essential resources. Drastically worsening over time.

Would the chaos be mostly and only confined to the population-dense region (or city) itself? Therefore leaving you pretty safe and secure (apart from the discussion about your own locale)?

The notion of the ‘zombie hordes’ or Golden Hordes comes into play. Could it actually happen?

A MSB commenter once said,

“On 9/11 in NYC the Bridges & Tunnels were shutdown after the attack. Expect the same to happen in NYC again, as well as in NJ. Everything will be shutdown in a grid using the Interstates and major RT’s as the dividing lines.”

“The govt. has containment plans in case of a major event. Their plan is to grid out and isolate everyone in their grid. Thus preventing mass chaos in the non-affected areas. The NG, SP and local LE will be patrolling the dividing roads. Bottom line, you will be stuck in your grid zone until you are TOLD to leave. You will get a free trip on the FEMA bus to a safe area…”

Another commenter said “I believe that there is a normalcy bias that people believe that things will get back to normal when the government gets involved. By that time people will be, depending on the time of year, forced to stay where they live because it’s too hot or cold or fear of the unknown.”

If living within ~50 miles of a population-dense region, will you be in danger even while living relatively rural? What’s the cutoff? 25 miles? 100 miles? more? less?

Lets hear your opinion about the hypothetical of living pretty close to population density, but seemingly far enough away so as not to be part of that region… Is it ‘safe enough’? Any further considerations here?

If not, then ‘why’? If yes, then ‘why’?


  1. What is it going to be like for those people within 50 miles of a major city? Well, ask those people of North Carolina. The military will start training in anti-militia warfare this month just like the army did here in Texas 2-3 years ago. The people outside the city will be caught in the warfare between our military and the city/country militias (an they do exist – take the Texas State Militia for example). I know them well. Who are the soldiers training to fight? Answer —-The people -us! Just like it happened in Texas this new military warfare training in North Carolina will take place in many counties—read about it in The Drudge Report today. So living outside the city is no safety zone.

    1. False. This exercise has been happening since the 1960’s. I’ve participated in it twice in the 1990’s.

  2. I think whether the Golden Hordes will “run to the hills” will depend and severity on the type of SHTF scenario. When Covid first started a few Atlanta residents tried to come up to the mountains but they found they were not welcome and several county Sheriffs closed the roads at the county lines and only allowed in those that had local addresses on their drivers licenses. Where I live we know who belongs and who doesn’t.

    If the power grid suddenly goes down or there is an EMP, CMA or other instant event (1 second after) most will wait for several days for it to be restored (as they foolishly have faith in the government to fix it) before they begin to flee which will then see massive backups and congestion on every interstate, highway and most roads. Few will have prepared and will not have gas, food, water etc and will be stuck along an road when the car stops. Crime will skyrocket has criminals realize they have free range as many LEOs will stay home to protect their families.

    With a slow unfolding event such as civil unrest the exit from the city will be slower as they try and figure out if it is contained to specific areas, neighborhoods and the unwillingness to “leave it all behind” will be very strong. I think many will stay and try to defend but when the ammo, water, and food run out the desperation will set in and it will probably be too late to leave.

    There is no way to really know because each type event, the time of year, the severity will be different so plan for anything.

    1. RC,
      very well said,
      i believe that most people in large cities will stay where they are until they realize that no one it going to come help them and by then it will be to late to move far.
      that was seen during hurricane katrina, people on their roofs in New Orleans for day’s,,, waiting.
      yes, plan for anything. there are so many things that are sitting on a hair trigger now as far as world politics, third world countries with nuke’s and their access to the internet to take out any of our grids at the stroke of a button, and you can bet they already have the codes to do it, they are just waiting for one moment of weakness.
      you never know, be ready. under our weak and inept government now they may consider that this is the time to strike. after the last two years nothing would surprise me, ever.— aliens from another planet?, bring em on! : )
      good luck, and thanks

    2. Well said. For my area time of year and weather will control a lot. We just had 4 feet of snow in my area of the Sierra and if the roads didn’t get plowed no one was going to get to my town

  3. I *assume* the majority would stay in the city, a large number would try to make it to friends and relatives and untold thousands would disperse to somewhere else.
    Many relocating will be fine, 1/4 tank of fuel should get any vehicle 100+ miles (well beyond me)

    Last stupidity I herd out of my nearest city of 38,477 population was some guy did a burnie- spun his tires across a rainbow crosswalk so that was labeled a hate crime for leaving black streaks across a gay crosswalk.
    Can a crosswalk be gay?

    It all depends on the city/population involved to a large extent.
    Any hard leftist city I would worry about much more than say a conservative area
    for damn good and obvious reasons.

    Unlikely they would find me on a gravel road in the country 35 minutes away when milwaukee/kenosha is south, green bay is north with a major highway connecting them all.
    As bad as it is people gravitate to population centers, not back roads.

    I believe most would stay where they are, mainly out of helplessness, despair and laziness.
    That also depends on what caused the current situation, is it getting better or worse and does local law still exist.

    1. Forgot, with the current weather few to none will venture out if they don’t have fuel to get somewhere else.
      Like the bugging out fantasy, everything is much easier in nice weather.

      Something I would dread is those vaguely known or quasi friends that think or assume you’ll help.
      that bring nothing to the table and are basically leaches.

      1. Good point with the quasi friends… I think I’d have to ask them a few questions before offering help first, like a test or “why should I”. If you don’t help what’s the risk of them coming back around and doing harm out of vengeance? Then your faced with harm or be harmed…. Tough choices

  4. I reside in Brownsville, Tx. in deep S. Texas. The population here is about 200,000 probably more if I were to count the illegal aliens here. But here is the problem, Brownsville is a border city and just across the shallow ditch called the Rio Grande is Matamoros, Mexico with a population of about 1 million. And unfortunately the river sits about a mile behind my house!

    1. JR,
      I was stationed at NAS Kingsville back in the 80’s and there was a whole lot of nothing between Kingsville and Brownsville back then. I’m sure that has changed now.

      1. Romeo Charlie,

        I’m guessing not…that stretch of nothing is on the King Ranch…Highway 77…to my knowledge, still the only public road through it…close to a hundred miles with no services between Kingsville and Harlingen

        1. Dennis,
          Remember it well going down to party in Matamoros, not so much coming back.

      2. Between Kingsville and Raymondville is where there is not much, just S. Texas brushland.

    2. JR, I grew up in San Juan and McAllen. The Reynosa area has about a million people, too. The entire RGV is just one city into another city, following the highway, even though there is a bunch of countryside not far from the main road. What the Valley has going for it is lots of locally-grown food, ocean fish, and rare cold days. Is it enough for everyone to survive, though, even if they were all being friendly and polite and sharing? Probably not, especially if the problem includes tractors not working and the inability to get pesticides. There’s also not a ton of meat on the hoof around there. Add in the fact that people won’t all be nice to each other, and it will be horrible. I’m not in a much better position now. I’m within a few hundred miles of two different cities with populations of over a million. Even the nearby semi-large city has enough people with bad morals that I would probably not survive if they came to my house, even though my small neighborhood would probably stick together. I’d love to move to a more rural area, but it’s not a possibility because of a family member’s medical issues. I’ll hope, pray, and do my best to make my corner of the world a safe, friendly area.

  5. After the hurricane in New Orleans years ago, the majority of people actually crowded into the city, looking for government assistance. There were some looters out in the surrounding suburbs. In most SHTF cases, like in New Orleans, I believe the so called golden horde will actually flock to the cities for govt assistance and fight each other for scraps. Those of us in the outer suburbs and in rural areas will have occasional, disorganized groups of would-be marauders (the ones left over after the in-fighting in the cities) to fight off, but it won’t be the golden horde.

    1. Last Stand,

      You may be right. There is no doubt that any government assistance would be directed to the population centers…which brings up another consideration…maybe even before a total meltdown.

      If food distribution to the stores becomes sporadic…and a few meals are missed…or the fear folks might not get their share…I can see delivery trucks being taken by force…maybe even by “rural” folks believing they are being overlooked.

      Riding shotgun on a vegetable truck may become a new vocation……….

      1. it took FEMA four day’s to respond to the New Orleans area after Katrina in any kind of capacity. many, many volunteers were there long before FEMA was, they couldn’t help everyone but they did what they could.
        and everyone knew that the storm was going to hit there a week or so in advance and people just sat in their homes on their couches until the water got to the roofs.
        i wouldn’t wait on FEMA’s help… and a few meals are missed? ever seen people who haven’t eaten in a week.
        i have. it’s ugly.
        Hurricane Katrina was my real wake up call on how truly bad things can get.
        and the bad thing is that it will it will happen again, eventually, and people will just sit in their homes, on their couches, again, and wait for someone to come save them while they drown.
        Darwinism in action. that’s what a welfare state conditions people to do.
        God feeds the birds, but He doesn’t drop the worm in its mouth. they have to work for it.

    2. Last Stand,
      i agree, but we will have to stay vigilant against marauders for a good while in a true “poo hits the prop” kinda situation, until the lack of food, clean water/ disease, interactions from others and infighting between them thins their numbers out. it won’t take long. i give it two months at the very most.
      i know that it suck’s to think this way, but can anyone of us chose to feed strangers before our families.
      i know where my first priorities lie. if i can help others, then i will. but my family will always come first. always.

  6. Dennis, yes, govt assistance will go first to the urban centers. Rural areas will be ignored, most likely. I do think the chaos and carnage will be greater in the urban centers though. We’re only 9 missed meals away from anarchy.

  7. A million What/If’s in Kens proposed question.
    But let’s assume the worst, “Lights Out” HARD. Total breakdown of society.
    I honestly believe that within 24 hours one will see total and complete ‘Unrest’, major violence, looting, and all the “Bad Stuff” you could think of. Does anyone here really think that the Police, etc. are going to confine a million people from leaving a city If/When? OR are they going to be home protecting their own?

    Would distance from a million people make a difference?
    Yes, for a short amount of time, BUT, again think on the water , food, heat/cooling, shelter, safety all being gone.
    Give it a week, MAYBE two weeks, than that Father and Husband of a family of 5 would become your worst nightmare, What would you do if your family was starving? Multiply that Family by 500,000.

    Do you honestly believe that 50 miles or even 100 miles would be a buffer for long?

    A harder question one should think on, is “What would you do in that Father of 3 showed up at your door step demanding food/water? as you look over his shoulder at his wife and 3 small kid.
    You going to shoot him and his family? how about the next 30 families behind him?

    Ok, so let’s do one more, Can you really defend off 20-30 Gang-Bangers that smelled your food and saw you sitting in that nice comfortable chair defending your “Stuff”.
    Yeah I know there are a lot of Tough Guys out there that prepare, but honestly, will that group of 10-20-30 neighbors fend off that 100,000 that are going to be on the move from that 19 MILLION person City?

    Great food for thought Ken, good Article.

    1. NRP & Blue

      There is one factor that may level the board – the weather. How far can the urban gang-bangers travel in 2 feet of snow and minus 5 temp? How far can the urban horde travel in temps above 100?

      1. hermit us:
        I will not disagree with Weather being a factor in the migration of the Horde. As with a thousand other factors in this ‘What/If’.

        Location will obviously play a HUGE factor in the game, take out friend Kulafarmer. He’s on a rock in the middle of nowhere with a few million others (1.416 million as of 2019) and how many thousands of vacationers at any given time? I agree 1000% with his answer below….
        Heck even take a place like Phoenix, good weather most of the time, a few million people, right in the middle of the stinking desert with practicable zero natural resources, how long before those folks decide that Flagstaff is looking really good? How long before I-17 looks like a sidewalk in NYC?

        I still stand on the fact of “What would a Father do to save his Children?” What would you, or any of us, do if you were starving?

    2. NRP & Blue…hermit us,

      All kinds of obstacles facing the “golden hordes” in their quest to search out, find, then actually take stuff from the supposedly fat and sassy, well prepared family in the boonies.

      I would think they would have nothing in the way of their own preps as they begin their pilgrimage…meaning that any sustenance (food, water) must be obtained as they travel…they will meet resistance right off the get-go.

      Natural attrition would take many of them out of the equation. Surely word of their advance would precede them, insuring more resistance each day.

      One would have to assume that any meaningful law enforcement would be nonexistent at this point. I would not be surprised if strange groups advancing through rural environs would become easy targets to local folks hiding behind trees and other forms of cover…shooting to wound, not kill…after all, what are the chances of meaningful and successful investigations if and when order and normalcy is restored?

      Let’s pray none of this materializes…….

      1. Dennis,
        “surely word of their advance would proceed them”
        Agreed. Ham radio anyone? Having knowledge of a problem is half the battle. I’m not a military guy. Wish I had more tactics training. If ya know they’re coming, it’s much easier to be ready.

        I’ve seen many city folks come to the rural areas to hunt. Many won’t venture more than 100 yards from their pick-up. I think fear of the unknown is the thing; will I get lost? scary animals out here? etc. Many will make big mistakes while walking through rural areas. Not the least of which are land owners.

        Could I walk 50 miles? I’d like to think so, but it would be BRUTAL. Only as a last resort, would I try that. Most city folk have no idea what they would be getting into. Not many would make it this far out. There will be some, so …….

      2. Dennis:
        No argument from me, The Hordes will move out, no doubt in my mind about that, even if only in groups of a few dozen. These people will be the most dangerous animal on the face of the Earth, scared, hungry, hopeless and on the move to places unknown believing there are millions of Rural folks out there with enough food/water stored up to feed all of them.

        I also will agree that most will have little to no Preps to do their trek with, maybe even to the point of just wandering down the road. BUT, there will also be those that have that Mean Evil Black Rifle that think you and I “owe” them everything we have worked for.

        Most stats that are floating around state that 90-95% of the population will parish within the first year. That’s a heck of a Blood Bath, Think on that, even if “they” are wrong and it’s only 50%, 150-160 million people gone in the US alone.

        I agree with the consequences of “disposing” of others that may be wanting your ‘Stuff’.
        Even if it takes a few decades to rebuild the Society, sooner or later one will face the consequences of their actions. Justified or otherwise, one will need to answer for their actions, if non other than their Maker.

        Like most, I sure do pray that this ‘What/If’ never happens, but let’s think on a lesser situation, how about a Pandemic, even if a Political Pandemic, how long did it take for the store to empty out? How about Inflation? As mentioned, there could be a thousand/million What/If’s.

      3. Dennis,
        You bring up a good point about action against “an invading horde”: shooting to discourage rather than kill. In a SHTF situation, depending on how desperate a horde might become, I would think they would avoid armed conflict at all costs and look for easy marks? Perhaps one or two well placed buckshot rounds, fired from a non-lethal distance would move them on?(harassing fire?) We must also take into account desperation of the horde, but I would think seeing members of their group fall would be disheartening. I hate thinking about this kind of stuff, shooting at people has not been in my personal experience. I guess that’s why I am struggling with it now beforehand, I see it as a possibility in my future. Forewarned is forearmed, no? Thank you for your comments and thoughts on this.

  8. It really depends on the cause and the time of year. With an EMP or some such and few vehicles running up in the great North this time of year many would not attempt or survive such a trip, maybe just freeze in place waiting for help. In the hot summer down South many if not most would be stopped in a day or so from drinking bad water while they walked, the ones that decided to try. A terrible way to go.

    It would be a different situation if vehicles were running of course. Which is why I said it depends….

    If it is a slow motion event I believe it would be worse as the time for more people to decide to “migrate” would be extended.

  9. Alas, I live in a Northern suburb of Dallas, Texas.
    The cities are so close together here, then when traveling on the roadways, there is no clear indication you’re leaving one city and entering another, other than the little signs that say so.

    I have resigned myself to the reality that I am only prepared for shorter-term events of a few weeks to a few months. If there is an EMP, or other cause that disrupts life as we know it for many months (or years), I’m toast. I suspect (actually know, based on the political signs displayed during election season) that most of my neighbors are even less prepared than I am.

    We’ve discussed moving to a more rural location after retirement, but doing so now and commuting to work is a non-starter.

    Yes, I have food, water, “camping” gear, propane, and gasoline stored (as well as TP, but not *nearly* as much as NRP probably has), but there are limits when the spouse isn’t on board, and will likely never be so.

    I thoroughly enjoy the blog, and have learned much from those who contribute to the discussions, but am no way near the level many (most) here are.

    1. All you can do is keep working at it. You are already more prepared than 90 percent of the people out there.

      Good for you

  10. Within 50 miles of a city of 1 million or more in a “lights out”, SHTF Scenario, you won’t be safe (unless you literally go underground into a mine or cave for a long while to wait out the die off). I live pretty rural, but within 55 miles of a small city/county of 75,000. However, the majority of that number is suburban/rural. Empty dry Desert twixt them and us. I suspect the local sheriff will be restricting travel for awhile too, and will likely be asking for help/reinforcements from us. I also feel that rural folks will create “self-isolation” by closing off all but a few roads in and out, keeping hordes out. That rowdy group of 30-50 gangbangers NRP spoke of would easily be kept at bay if one or two met an “untimely fate” on a lonely rural road 5-10 miles from town, their bodies left in place as a warning to others. I think a lot of this action would happen if the scenario were extremely dire. But as NRP also brought up, what if that group of 30-50 were all families with kids???? Lot of hard questions will need to be answered on the spot. Pray for guidance.

  11. Probably not. The first criteria for a homestead, IMO, is geographical isolation from major population centers or lines of drift (interstates and major highways). I set my criteria at being at least 150 miles from a metro area. I believe at the time that was a reasonable estimate of the number of miles an adult could walk in a week. As far as assessing whether a smaller community could be a problem. I also look for the following – 1) low crime rates; 2) low drug and alcohol addiction rates; 3) no local prisons, mental institutions or major universities/colleges; 4) conservative/libertarian local voting patterns including low property tax rates and unrestrictive zoning; 5) local diversity in the economy; and 6) self-sufficiency in local lifestyles – hunting/fishing/gardening. Population count may not always be an efficient gauge. A lot can be gleaned from the types of businesses and the products/services sold. No farm store or true hardware store? Probably not a place for me. But I look to observe any community in my possible location.

    1. I’m more concerned about the local county meth-head zombies roaming around when they need cash to buy a fix than a urban gang banger on foot. You can bet the meth-head knows the area, has probably already scoped out a few houses around the area and they are very unpredictable. The biggest threat is probably already within a 10 mile radius of you.

      1. RC,
        I may be wrong, but I believe that in a real SHTF situation, those meth-head zombies might be the first to meet their fate in my AO,…if you catch my drift.

        1. Minerjim,
          Only one cure for a rabid dog and meth zombies look and act like they’ve got rabies.

      2. romeo charlie: i think u may be right on the meth heads. we live outside city and just at times going down the road from our house, some of the locals just don’t look right (drugge out). also we have lived here in our house about 2 years, the first month or 2 i had put my tilt trailer used for transporting mower when needed to repair, well, i put it out in front yard and no more than 2 weeks went by and trailer gone. i should have known i should have tied it to tree or let air out of tires, reported it but as usual, not ever found.

        1. 007,
          The meth-head losers are already desperate, most are thieves and will be lower than pond scum when their SNAP cards don’t work and the welfare check doesn’t get deposited. I live 30 minutes driving time from the nearest town and I have made a note of a couple of houses on my way into town that have that “tweeker lives here” look as well as the type/number of vehicles in the yard. Situational awareness of your AO will go a long way with the balloon goes up. The real threat may just come from the other side of the mountain.

        2. romeo charlie, i have done similar. after my trailer was stolen and i reported it to deputy, my son and i drove around a pretty large area, but lot of houses/trailer houses and i did not see my trailer, lot of trashy looking places, and most likely will never see it again. our real estate agent that sold house to us told me, well they probably painted it red (it was black color). even at night (our rural carrier delivers mail sometimes at 8 or 9 o’clock at night, i am armed with my sig nightmare 9mm, going to check mail, i try to be ready.

        3. 007,
          i can spot a meth head a mile away. its how they move, flopping their arms, and the way they walk. something about that stuff just burns their brains out and they can’t stay still, always moving their arms and legs in an uncontrollable way.
          if i see something like that coming up my driveway in a true grid down situation, there will be no warning shots! you can bet on that. i have no sympathy for those types. none. and i would sleep good that night knowing that they would not return.
          honestly guy’s , i keep drumming it into DW that if you let someone you don’t know get to the front door, and you open it, it could be game over. keep them back. circle around out the back door wide and confront them with a firearm.
          our local LEO’s are VERY understanding about these things, they don’t wan’t that at their houses either. DW is kin to about half of them and the other half she keeps their kids at the daycare.
          there are thousands of acres of empty woodlands in our area that we can dispose of garbage in. 28 sections of company timber land ( GA Pacific ) behind my house.
          rat’s and buzzards have to eat to.

        4. nyscout, i agree, i told secretary at my office years ago, i said, why is these druggies at walmart all look the same, running up and down the isle, tattoos all over body, no shirt on (always no shirt on), can’t stand still and always wired. pathetic.

  12. But I am thinking where the relief efforts would be concentrated would be the area to avoid. Correct?

  13. I’m more concerned about the local county meth-head zombies roaming around when they need cash to buy a fix than a urban gang banger on foot. You can bet the meth-head knows the area, has probably already scoped out a few houses around the area and they are very unpredictable. The biggest threat is probably already within a 10 mile radius of you.

  14. Everyone seems to agree that hordes of people will flee the cities in a desperate attempt to find safety and sustenance, but…what if?

    … What if your rural homestead has run out of stored food, all the game has been hunted to extinction for miles around you…your first two plantings have failed?

    …Word gets to you that food rations have made it to the large population center 100 miles away. Would you uproot your family and make the trek hoping things will be better there? Knowing you will be homeless when you get there? Not knowing the layout of the city? Knowing you will be the outsider with no friends to depend on? Would you be willing to steal…maybe kill someone for their supplies?

    Be honest with yourself as you ponder this scenario.

    1. Dennis,
      Honestly, for me, I’d head farther into the boonies for game and bring it home. But I am fortunate to have good health and the ability to do so. Many others would not be as fortunate.

      1. Stand my Ground,

        No, I honestly can’t. Only my sense of obligation to my wife, children and grandchildren would drive me to even consider that option…but…is that not what many good, moral folks living in the cities may face?

        I marvel at how some folks just jump to the “kill ’em all and let God sort ’em out” when topics like this one are the subject of the campfire chat.

        I guess my answer would be…when the decision has to be made, I’ll let that inner voice guide me…it’s never failed in any of the untenable scrapes I’ve lived through up till now….and hope I don’t have to find out.

    2. Dennis,
      Good points to ponder. What if you are being overrun but given the option to walk away with your family? Do you make your stand or walk and live to fight another day? Do you leave empty handed and go elsewhere or regroup and try to retake your home? Where do you go when your home is burned? Who in your group, family or friends can you really, honestly trust?

      There are so many what ifs, there is no way to plan for them all but the biggest mistake we can make is planning in our minds exactly how we think things are going to go down and overlook things that are not in our plan. SHTF will be extremely fluid with new challenges daily, hourly and by the minute. Until we are thrown in the arena no one really knows how they will respond but having supplies, knowledge, skills and some preplanning will go a long way to putting the odds in our favor.

      1. romeo charlie, that really sums it up, when u r thrown in that situation u don’t really know how it will turn out. just try to be prepared best u can.

      2. RC,
        well said.
        a person never knows until they are confronted in a situation like that, and you can’t predict how it’s going to turn out. situations like that will always be fluid for sure. always are, just ask any LEO. it’s never the same.
        the personalities and thought’s of people are as diverse as there are people. you just have to be able to read people and go from there.
        their personalities and mindset at the time will determine their actions. looking at their eyes and faces will usually, but not always, give away their intentions. and always watch their hands.
        take care

    3. Thats why i am glad i live where i live,,,
      Yea it would be nice to live amongst a bunch of like minded folks like yall, but out here its slipper weather all year around really, food is everywhere in our area, especially if you know what you are looking at.
      A 3/4 day walk and you can be in totally uninhabited jungle one way or shoreline the other both teeming with food of one fashion or another.
      Got to look at silver linings eh…

    4. dennis, good comment. i would myself be afraid to uproot wife and son, head that way and truck gives out, or need gas and no gas available. there u r stranded on side of road as the mongol hordes come at u.

    5. Dennis,
      not for at least for a year. that’s why we plan ahead. honestly i think we could make it two years with what we have stored and canned now.
      if the crops don’t fail, and that’s a big if, longer than that. last year was a bust, we got ours but not much else. we plant acres every year. our biggest concern now is that at our age staying healthy and physically active to do it is a major issue. we are closer to the end than the beginning. we are in good health now, but in your 60’s + anything can happen in a heartbeat at anytime.
      we are the ant’s, not the grasshoppers.
      us, we are in the valley, bottom land dwellers, and it’s all good here : )

    6. Not to turn gross… but I think cannibalism would be alternative, meaning if you’ve had to apply deadly force to protect yourself, might as well not let meat go to waste, esp if knowing hunting was getting harder

  15. NRP, I remember the power outage in NY city in 72. It ONLY took the street people about 12 hrs. to realize that alarm systems don’t work without electricity.

    As far as somebody coming up to my house, umm no, they would have to climb over the fence and the barbwire. I would tell them I don’t give out food here and I would direct them to the neighborhood church for food/shelter. If they demanded that I give them something, sorry no. If they got by me, they would have to deal with the Mrs.’s and she has already told me she will not “play nice”.

    If there is more of them than us well, we’ll all die some day.

  16. Ho Hum, Wyoming sure is Cold and Windy. 350+ miles to a city of 1 million and 200 miles to any city of 50,000+ sure is going to be boring around here when the Schumer Hits The Fan. Makes me wonder why over 70 lots sold here just this past summer. Don’t they know we have Indians, Grizzly Bears and lots of Snow. Trekker Out

      1. Kula I’ve been feeling kinda beat down lately, The Good Lord took my wife just a few days before Christmas, I’m still in the grieving mode. Thanks for checking, my far Western Friend. Trekker Out

        1. Trekker,
          I am so very sorry for your loss.
          May He grant you peace in your time of need.
          Sending prayers to you and your family.
          Please take care of your self.

        2. Mountain Trekker
          So very sorry to hear of your loss. I Know there are no words, just know I will have you in my prayers.
          Stay strong, and let us know how your doing.

        3. Mountain Trekker,

          Really sorry to hear that. Sending prayers for comfort and peace to come your way. And a hug.

        4. Im so sorry to hear that Trekker, theres really no words to make that feel ok.
          I hope that you find relief soon.
          Aloha and God bless.

        5. Mountain Trekker,
          So sorry for your loss.
          Letting go of those we love the most can be a hard and bitter pill.
          Having comfort that the Lord has them safely enveloped in His Love, is one way to get thru the loss. Take your time to grieve, remember the good times… I lost my twin, recently too. He no longer has to be out delivering on icy roads. The streets are dry and safe there.He is at peace.

        6. Mountain Trekker,
          words can’t express how truly sorry i am for your loss.
          take care of yourself.

        7. Trekker,
          I’m sorry to hear of your loss. May the good memories of better times with your wife give you peace and comfort in the days and weeks ahead. you’re in my thoughts and prayers.

        8. Mountain Trekker – I’m sorry to hear of the passing of your better half. Take all the time you need to grieve and remember but please don’t stop living. If I could, I’d come and give you a man-hug and stay for a few games of cribbage. As AC has previously stated, we are here for you, even if it is only in cyber-space. Take care my friend….

        9. To Mountain Trekker,
          It makes me realize even more, to appreciate every day with a loved one. I know that your loss reinforces this with me and my outlook. It’s so easy to take for granted. We are all here on a temporary basis. Some things we worry or stress about are negligible in comparison. I’m sorry to hear about this, and though it’s only words, and easy for someone else to say… ‘hang in there’…

        10. Mountain Trekker,
          I am so very sorry to read of your wife’s passing. I’ll add my voice to those here praying for you as you grieve and cope with such a profound loss. Your MSB family of friends is here for you if you need us. Take care.

        11. Mountain Trekker,
          My deepest condolences on your wife’s passing. I hope time and great memories help heal the pain you are feeling right now.

        12. Mountain Trekker,
          Praying for you now, that you know the peace, comfort, and love of the One who will always be trekking right beside you, keep leaning on His strong shoulders, God bless you…

        13. Trekker – so sorry to hear about your wife. I unexpectedly lost my best friend, my younger sister, right after Christmas – we were best friends for her whole life. There are no words to ameliorate grief, just memories to hold on tight to. I hope your wonderful memories of your wife bring some comfort to your soul. Take time to care for yourself.

        14. Always Learning,
          So very sorry for your loss.
          Sisters are the best friends one cN have.
          May He grant you peace.
          Sending prayers to you and your family.

        15. Thank you Mad Fab for your kind words and I agree sisters can be the absolute best friend. We are in shock, as almost everyone in our family lives to be close to 100. We had planned to spend our later years together as a family, with our sister rockers on the porch. Now that cannot happen … my heart is beyond broken. I am holding tight to my heart my remaining siblings.

        16. Trekker,
          So sorry to hear about your wife. May the Lord give you comfort, strength, and grace as you bear the loss of your loved one 🥲

  17. We would all do well to study the Bosnian War. Their experiences are shocking. They survived something so horrific and evil that forever changed them as a people. 30 years later they are just now starting to emerge from those horrors. You will never meet someone so ice-cold as a Bosnian CW survivor. I don’t mean that in an ugly way. It’s just a fact and they will explain to you why. That stoicism is the only way they could survive and move forward in their lives.

    1. BG in TX

      Many Bosnians live in my area. The man across the street lost his legs in the 10 year war. He had awful PTSD and hung himself and so did his brother. So sad. He was nice and helpful.

  18. I’m more concerned with the city of 40,000 ten minutes drive from me, than I am of the golden horde of the large city. If the horde were on the move, I think they’d take the path of least resistance, which would be to closer smaller towns or along the I5 corridor. Because we’re on a peninsula, we’re enough off the beaten path, that even close friends haven’t wanted to take the time to drive the extra distance to get to us. But, we live in a small rural area close to two population centers, and I’m sure that in the city mentality, they would think that since we have land, fields, and forests, it follows that there’s lots of food being farmed here. However, they’re not large parcels of acreage, and certainly not enough to sustain even the one family living in each home. I know our area would be an attractive target. We’re prepared to defend ourselves.

    I think, even if we were pretty low on supplies, we would be better off staying put. We have a stream, we have native plants, we have fruit trees and berries in season. We have seeds and room for a larger garden. We can barter with neighbors. I can’t imagine leaving on the promise that the government or someone else has provisions for us. Ultimately, we would prayerfully consider each step we should take. And pray for wisdom and discernment for all.

  19. 1 Million population centers? We don’t even have a million people in the state, and we’re in the biggest state in the union ;-) I would have to drive several days to run into a place with a million people. Although the city I live in in is 350K+ its the only one that big in the entire state. A couple or three at 50K+. the other 1/3 of the state live where there are no roads to drive either in or out of their place. For being such a big town in a vast land, a lot of people will disperse and wait for the real city folk to die off. It might even turn into a good place to return too :-) I can’t answer the question because I don’t really know. We’ll do whatever is best at the time considering all the circumstances. We got bug in plans and bug out plans. It just depends on which one the quarterback calls.

  20. We all saw what happened in winter weather to normal traffic en route to Tahoe and the DC-Norfolk corridor in the past couple weeks. Just a few days ago Western Washington was cut off by heavy precipitation covering the main N-S Highway with a 20-mile stretch of water in the southern part of the state and closing every mountain pass E-W with snow. What if those weather patterns lasted days instead of a day? What if no one came to help because the grid was down, communication was down, satellite imaging was unavailable, and first responders were all tied up closer to town? Would the people in the cars stay in hopes of help or head out on foot for home? .. .. .. .. Here in Western WA Joint Base Lewis McChord straddles I-5. The main N-S corridor running from Vancouver BC to Tijuana BCN. The base runs from the water of Puget Sound on the west side of the highway all the way to the Mountain Highway on the east. As of five years ago (newest data I could find) 140,000 vehicles a day passed through Joint Base on I-5. I bet that among the first acts of that base in a grid-down emergency is to shut down access through the base and to clear a corridor on the east side for mil vehicles only. That will certainly put a crimp in passage from the Seattle-Bellevue-Tacoma metro area south and west.

      1. I would hope they would in a shtf situation. Means no city folk would make it as far as me. Only 4k in the town were I live. Lot easier to deal with

    1. I’m in the North Bend area (last services on I-90 before Snoqualmie Pass) about 40 miles east of Seattle, but up and off an old national forest road outside of the city limits. Every time it snows more than what our all wheel drive can handle without plowing we stay home.

      Our local downtown always looks like a war zone when the pass closes in winter. Lots of trucks trying to find a semi-legitimate place to park (and are usually polite about being stuck) vs. the commuter car traffic camped out at the local Safeway and fast food parking lots raising their blood pressure. If Seattle ever has to evacuate to the east up 90, it is even going to become less polite. Unfortunately all eastbound traffic has only the major highways with some parallel train tracks/hiking routes through the passes. One reason our household has always prepped for the long term. And rivers, did I forget to mention the various rivers and bridges that will generate bottleneck for any eastward migration.

      Locally we have bare shelves due to lack of delivery and stuck traffic. In the past it clears up a few days after traffic resumes. The initial pass openings were limited to truck traffic, which annoyed commuter traffic ( the state police wanted the pro truck drivers on the only open lane).

      Patience is required to be able to think clearly about what needs to be done. Those folks may have a chance to muddle through.

  21. A few years before I retired to the farm there was a terrible winter storm here. Snow and ice cut folks nearby off from help for more than a week. Power was out. The folks pulled together. The owner of the little gas and grocery a few miles up the only road through the area cooked food daily. He had a big generator and reserved the station’s gas for those who distributed food to others. And to those who drove around with portable generators. They powered up folks’ houses for a couple hours a day to keep their freezers from warming and spoiling food. Most folks pitched in who could and neighbors with gen sets kept folks’ cell phones charged. But this was a temporary, localized situation. Folks knew they’d be able to replenish their supplies of food and fuel once it was over. Long-term grid down situation might be different. Some of us stand ready to help our friends in the area, but don’t have the resources to help everyone, or even more than a few for any length of time. We talk about it when we get together for birthday parties, and swimming, and letting the kids play together. Several families are quietly stocking up, and we’ve got a few obvious BOLs in the area. Strangers on the road are not particularly welcome at any time. During bad times probably not at all. Makes me think of the scenario in the 299 Days post-a series. Makes me wonder, as I did at 4 a.m. today when the power went off for hours. Interesting timing for this article.

    1. Anony Mee,
      it’s like i keep saying, and your absolutely right, it’s all about community.
      most people living in large cities don’t even know their next door neighbors name after 10 yrs. of living in the same place. and abdula and mohammed at the jiffymart down the street won’t help you.

  22. Taking into account what Dennis said earlier, “Sometimes the folks in the country have to go to the city in order to take refuge” It happened in my neighborhood during Labor Day of 2020 when the hills caught on fire and the winds drove the embers and flames down through canyon towns making refugees out of people that had homes, supplies and valuables. I saw this happen to communities in California before I left and I saw it in my neighborhood at that time.

    This is why i live in a suburb of a small town at the edge of town that happened to be close to the northern edge of the fire. If I lived rural, I would have been busy cutting line with a tractor. I fought enough fires in my youth that I did not obey the evacuation orders and stayed put doing foot patrol around my neighborhood looking for falling embers with a flashlight, garden sprayer and a charged cell phone. I had a weapon on me as did others who were doing similar patrols around their block. Most of my neighbors left to go to the nearby city fairgrounds where the air quality was marginally better. Most people took their truck/trailer combinations with them. The nearby fairgrounds are in a not-nice part of town so most of the evacuees took weapons with them to the fairgrounds and kept them within the trailers. It was about a week of eating from my canned food supply and stored food because many restaurants were still closed due to COVID lockdown back then.

    Evacuating to the city happens more often than people like to admit. My point is: Do not become too smug sitting in your present location. Bad things happen to good people all the time. I chose to be in a position to patrol my block and put out any spot fires I may see and possibly prevent looters from taking advantage of the many empty homes in our area. We came through the fires of Labor Day with intact home and smoky curtains.

  23. Post script: The homes of my neighbors were intact when they returned from the fairgrounds and the air was of better quality. My next door neighbor has emphysema so they had to go someplace else with better air quality during the week of smoky air.

  24. Poorman,
    Thats why they call the crooks in DC the Uniparty,,, doesnt really make much difference what side they say they are on, almost all of them are NOT ONOUR SIDE!

    Term limits on CONgress and an end to lobbying is the only thing that will attempt to reign it in.

    Personally, i feel its too late

  25. Been thinking about this a lot,,,

    If someone is going to try and deprive me of the stuff i put back and struggled in some cases to acquire,
    NOBODY is going to get anything and i will take as many with me straight to hell……

    I would rather die defending my home and provisions than be turned into a refugee.

    1. KF,
      My wife and I are with you. We have discussed both sides of the issue and decided we will not be slaves, we will not become refugees, our home is the hill we are willing to die on but only after we burn it to the ground. We are too old, nor do we want to start over, have no children and I’ll be damn if someone is just going to take what we’ve worked for our whole lives so the only thing we plan to leave is scorched earth.

      1. Same here, we both have decided better to be dead than hand to mouth wishing for food or worse yet detained,,,

        Difficult decision and difficult discussion

        1. I kinda look at all these forthcomings in this manner;
          If and when ‘it happens’,
          I will become a statistic,
          On my own terms, at whatever measure.

  26. What if: You’re in your house all snug like a bug and a military plane flies over dispersing a liquid, which turns out to be a herbicide, your garden, fruit trees, and herb gardens die quickly; They (FEMA) did this to encourage you to “voluntarily” move into a FEMA camp. What do you do then?

    “They wouldn’t do that” you want to bet, yes, they would. You forget, you’re just a number to them, you’re not a real person, just a statistic on a sheet of paper.

    1. That’s a very important point you have made – we are just a statistic. I had a former Army Ranger tell me that the Afghan army was mostly statistics on paper. The government got a certain amount of money per “soldier” and as a result the ranks were padded with ghost soldiers to get more money. What if the FEMA camp commandants and their regional overlords are funded based on number of refugees with the real possibility of a physical headcount at random intervals? The incentive would be to drive people to your camps.

    2. blackjack22,
      i would think that they would have to fly fairly low to do that. like crop dusters, easy targets. ya just have to lead them. ya know, like duck hunting : )

      1. nyscout, I never said they flew during the daytime, they could fly at night all blacked out and you might not hear that plane until AFTER it has flown over your place.

      2. So a “painted plot”. And have your real plot under some sort of camouflage. You’d have to be ready and waiting on them

  27. If the power stays on and is rationed, I picture the US looking like Russia in the 1980’s and before. People will stay home for the most part and struggle on the government handouts while some nefarious plan will be hatched to slowly lessen the population. Starvation is an easy one for the young meek and old.
    As I have said before it will test the Christian faith to the umpth degree and most that speak of it as the motive of their life will fail the test. Could I let some scumbag rape one of my granddaughters, no. Could I not feed a child looking at me whose ribs are showing, no, no I couldn’t. Most and I am guessing 90% or so of the people on this blog have never taken a human life. Have never even been remotely close to a situation where this would possibly occur. If the hoards come it will test most of us more than we can ever imagine. The old warriors who have been to war, well as I have been told by one, you only throw up once……………

    1. “some nefarious plan will be hatched to slowly lessen the population”

      The plan has already been hatched, it is now in motion.

    2. You have a very good point. Very few have ever pulled a trigger on another human being. It’s not something that is easy to do or easy to get over. And some throw up Everytime

      1. Poorman,
        and very many in this country have, it’s a smaller percentage, they just don’t talk about it. you never know about the average looking person standing next to you. men and women, where they have been,what they have seen and what they have done. but if you know what to look for, in the way they speak and how they handle themselves, and the self confidence they have, you can tell.
        it’s a brotherhood that only they know among themselves. it’s a very private thing to many.
        and most of those who brag about it, weren’t there..

        1. nyscout

          Agreed. Father and uncles went through some of the bloodiest fighting of ww2. Never spoke a word. Only after they were gone did their wives let some of it be known. A very little bit.

  28. Till Armageddon no shalam, no shalom
    Then the father hen will call his chickens home
    The wise man will bow down before the throne
    And at His feet they’ll cast their golden crowns
    When the Man comes around

  29. Hi Rosie, Nice to see your comment. Relatively remote here at the rainforest but not Mick Dodge remote. My worry is not so much hungry hordes as it is predatory outlaw biker gangs. They tend to spend time at nearby beaches in nice weather. However, no questions arise when dealing with vermin. A lot of the area around me is managed forestry. Fair weather bicyclists and hobby bikers might show up but unless one has specialized tools there’s nothing to eat in the woods here. Elk, sturgeon in the bay, clams at the beach, salmon in season but not a dense population of any.

  30. Not really worried about roving groups from cities my younger years taught me the nasty side of life in the military , those that fear hordes of gang bangers should understand said groups could be on the receiving end of mass casualties and those uninjured will lose all taste for conflict . May I suggest you study Guerrilla warfare , best defense is always offence

  31. Something to also be aware of are organized violent groups, such as anti fa. They seem to be based in larger cities, though they have satellites. Historically, groups like this unofficially sanctioned militant arm of the leftists in power, eventually ended up in the outer reaches. Before dismissing them as basement dwelling soi boys, consider they are organized (better than we are), and funded and equipped. If stuff really hits the fan, they may be able to travel when we can’t, or will at least wreak havoc in home base areas. I’m not sure how well they’d actually do against an opposing group defending their homes, but a lone homestead could be vulnerable. Divemedic at areaocho dot com just put out a very good intel report yesterday about their organizational structure. Might be useful to know if you live w/in driving distance of one of their hives.

    1. Farmgirl. it seems like these groups like anti fa and the bee el em cannot take what they want they have no problem burning people out of their businesses or homes.

      1. DJ5280,
        if i was to see someone trying to light a bottle, i would shoot the bottle. that would get their attention.

  32. DJ5280 and Dennis,

    These groups should not be underestimated, and note they will use ‘dishonorable’ tactics. Among them, just burning a place down, and the use of minors (a hop, skip and a jump from child soldiers). Something else to consider and prepare for.

    One of the concerns I had in WI, after a small contingent showed up in a small town 15 minutes away, was the fact that state law was castle doctrine, and not stand your ground. Meaning, they had to be entering the home for self-defense to be justified. Not very comforting when they seemed to be favoring flaming projectiles.

    Regarding the use of minors, I’m troubled by the very real possibility that children will be used as decoys to gain entry to homes. What does one do then? Very difficult decisions to grapple with.

    1. Farmgirl,
      i have said this before. with a group of bully’s there is always a leader. it’s not hard to pick them out. they will be the most vocal one. if you punch them in the nose, so to speak, and take them out the rest will back off.
      this is simple schoolyard tactic’s and it still works today. take out the leader and the rest will run in disarray.
      it’s military doctrine 101. to take out command and control first.

      1. nyscout,

        True, that. When the St. George of Fentanyl riots first started, they were already in operation. After a while of watching the feeds, I could easily spot them, and for a short period of time some were communicating openly on-line. Someone else figured out their C&C structure, and it’s important to note. Formations were using cover of women and children protesters, with those launching projectiles in the middle. Scouts and crowd control were on bikes, sometimes skateboards. They would give signals to leaders in the crowd. They received those signals from C&C through earpieces – I was able to see that a couple of times. Actual C&C were away from the action, in vehicles. It was suspiciously organized, in an alphabet way if you know what I mean. If a group shows up in rural parts, just know that there may be more than what is visible…Now, their comms are hidden, and they’ve wised up about allowing any video feeds – those people get beaten – so they seem to have gone more underground. Clearly, they’re still active, as the arrest of one w/ a kaboom device in FL just a couple days ago shows. If they’re supported by who I think is supporting and training them, it won’t be just flaming bottles they have…..What’s that advice? Don’t fight from your front porch…

      2. You mean like with a semi auto 12gauge with a few drum mags and lots and lots of OObuck

      3. nyscout, i think u may be right on that. get rid of the leader and the other idiots don’t know exactly what to do with themselves.

    2. Farmgirl

      Only in the movies does the hero not strike back when attacked, man, woman, or child. Many country’s conscripts are young adolescents. No difference. You will have to harden you heart if this comes about. I hope it doesn’t.

    3. Farmgirl,
      Go check that law directly. Here in Colorado we have our “Make my day” law, they must be breaking into the home , BUT…further review of the law allows use of deadly force to protect against arson attack also. That fact is not often spoken of, but is on the books. Just to be safe, I’ll let them try just one molotov cocktail to be sure of their true intentions then protect myself accordingly.

      1. Minerjim,

        My new state is pretty strong in supporting self-defense, and defense of others, as well as protection of property. Hopefully, it stays that way. “Make my day”? Lol, hadn’t heard that before.

    4. Farmgirl,

      Part of their organizational skills and networking…notice they only seem to show up in areas where Soros installed district attorneys decide who gets prosecuted.

  33. @ Poorman, you have a valid comment about either party won’t be taking care of anybody, but themselves. It will be every person for themselves, until martial law settles in. And then what happens ?

  34. No matter where you live, people will be traveling through. Government and law enforcement will fail, or become repressively brutal. It will be a have/ have not power struggle. Every deer, duck and fish will be stripped from the environment. Everyone has a finite amount of stuff, so get to know your neighbors. You’ll be surprised how helpful that will be. And if it’s really that bad, I’m going to heaven anyway.

  35. In regards to the earlier talk of meth heads running around the countryside: Pretty easy to spot when they are tweaking. If/when they attack, remember multiple well placed shots as these are the folk that are bullet sponges when their blood is up and they have a visual lock on you. These are the folk that buckshot rounds and high capacity sidearms were designed to stop. It can be very difficult because they can take a lot of hits before they go down.

    Many thanks to Farmgirl for the warnings about ANTI FA and BLM. Many decades ago, I remember some folks thinking that buddhists were harmless and peaceful though they made up the majority of the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese armies. They have access to the same books that we do though they think very different. Acknowledge that these folks are smart. Do not underestimate them as being stupid.

  36. Those of us that saw Real Combat, with the death and destruction that goes with it, will rarely talk about it – especially to those who have never experienced it. Whenever I hear someone bragging about their experiences relating to that, I know that person is full of BS !

    Since Vietnam, I have worked with people for years before they even became aware I was there, and it takes them by surprise when they do find out. One fellow worker asked me one day why I never mentioned it. I just looked at him and said, “The real ones never do.”

    Years ago, when I was 67, a circumstance that happened caused me to have a ‘Flashback’ combat experience that had occurred 47 years before. I cried for 3 days. You never get over it. Never.

    1. WarVet,

      Thank you. Been wanting to say that. I’ve met many Navy Seals…few that were authentic.

  37. Just a random thought—-
    The hood rats, in cities, are very comfortable in their “hoods”, and it could be that they would be loathe to venture out of the city to somewhere they may have never been.
    The rural folks could have much more time to prepare for trouble.

    1. The inner city gangs will decide who runs which part of the city and then send groups out to rape and pillage the suburbs. Those that live in suburbia will bear the full brunt of a SHTF situation as they are caught between hood rats invading and being shot by rural folks when they try to escape to the hills. Those crowded suburban homes that have no septic tanks, wells or electricity will quickly be uninhabitable and the raiding parties will swarm those neighborhoods like locusts taking what they want and burning the rest.

      But I don’t think they will venture to far out in the rural areas on foot, however if they have transportation they might try raiding parties on rural homes that are close to roads that have an easy egress back to the hood. More hit and run, than hit and stay.

  38. Maybe some make it all the way out here, but not most. Why? Because a whole lot of them are FAT. The rest are just , well, you can’t fix stupid. Running around in 4 degree with sandals and shorts, They don’t have the gear, for winter or summer. They’re so out of shape I’m surprised they can even walk into the store. Zero experience handling any emergency.

    Go into any town, look around, Fat, looking at a cell phone, no Ospec at all. Grid lock most of the time, plastic money, no preps. Most are already refugees, and don’t even know it.

    A few will make it, they better have something real good to offer the group,,,

    1. Stand my Ground,
      LOL, you just described 75% of our country and there is another 10% to 20% who won’t be able to function without the drugs that the doctors have them addicted to when they run out, and the Walgreens are closed or ransacked. they have the same JIT supply issues just like everyone else. they don’t keep much on hand. many good people will die in their homes because of that. that’s bad but its a fact.
      there may be a few, but i don’t see most people making it further than maybe ten miles from their homes on foot before they face major problems like clean water, health issues, weather, or other people.
      access to clean water is going to thin the heard out very quickly and it won’t be pretty.
      i keep harping on this guy’s, but if you don’t have a reliable source of water, 24/7/365, a year round stream, a creek or a good well with a way to pull it out without electricity you may as well give up now because you won’t make it long term without it. you can’t depend on rain. it’s a good thing to collect it but you can’t depend on it. we live in an area that get’s plenty of rainfall, but i have seen it go two months without a drop in sept. and aug.
      it’s good to have water put back for short term, several weeks or so, but those 5 gal water jugs and 55 gal. barrel’s have a bottom to them. talk about a barter item, what would a person give for a gallon of water when they are thirsty.
      clean water is everything. ask any of the old timers west of the Rockies. many have died in range wars over water rights on grazing lands.
      and no they don’t barter or refuse drinking water to anyone if they have it, that’s just not done out there.
      rant over

      1. nyscout
        My biggest concern? Take a map and draw a one mile circle around your house, that space is my biggest concern. Every single one of us have neighbors we know for a FACT are NOT prepared. I don’t know all my neighbors, their intention in a SHTF, they don’t know mine. Some I know are preppers, some I think are prepared, from watching them come from town and unload in broad daylight. Not everybody buys in bulk bags of 50lbs. Some are not preppers. No garden, don’t even mow their lawn or pull a weed. If they are that lazy, why help them?

      2. If one has a year round stream, one not only has water, but a source of power, too. Put an 8′ waterwheel on that stream and generate electricity 24/7…

        In some places, water is not metered to the home by the utility. Yet, the water main in the street has between 60 and 80 psi of water pressure in it. In such places, people can use this water to create electricity for free.

        1. I want to rig up generator to bike or elliptical for power when needed, solar power panels are so expensive but a small scale one could work

    2. Stand, just how far do you think those sit-down Walmart carts can go? Just wondering’…….

      1. DJ5280
        With Fat Albert at the wheel? 1/4 mile. He probably run over the, SQUIRREL.!!

  39. They are predicting possible ice accumulation in the North Ga mountains and it may extend down to Atlanta so the local ATL news reporter said “ Everyone should have 3 days of food stored just in case”. I’m guessing for the majority their 3 days of food supplies is Hot Pockets, Chicken Nuggets, Wings and beer.

    BTW, I wonder why during every winter storm people think they have to make french toast? I mean they always buy bread, eggs and milk right? :)

    1. romeo charlie, yes some can live by hot pockets alone, i can’t after a while, but anyway, just got back from local neighborhood walmart grocery(southeast mo), and people filling up carts with food enough for a month. we may get some snow here for 1 or 2 days but nothing that is going to be an Apocalypse, some older gentlemen was leaving the store in an electric cart, the basket was completely filled with, i don’t know about 15 or 20 one gallon jugs of milk. why does anyone need that much milk i ask? that right there took away from other people needing milk and i am not saying take him out and string him from the nearest tree, but just seemed wasteful.

      1. The milk fellow was going to make cheese out of it, mozzarella, and its sister ricotta. He will then sell the cheese he makes for more money than the cost of the milk…to his neighbors, so they can make lasagna.

  40. Take a map of the United States and start by drawing circles around the areas mentioned in the article to match up to 25/50/75 miles. That will provide some real perspective on so called rural and safe(ish) areas. That being said, I am an Emergency Manager and have spent quite a bit of time working on evacuation plans for major metro areas on the East Coast and then doing the same for a Midwest City (area) where I live now. There are a lot of factors that go into this starting with how the major areas are impacted by their critical infrastructure (utilities) and how their public transportation (or doesn’t). The demographic of the people living in the area also plays a key role.
    Bottom line, 25 miles is way too close. 50 is better, but not a guarantee of safety (Remember, at each layer, the people that actually make it that far are better than the ones before that didn’t). 75-100 miles would be better, but depending on where you live and how far out you are and sustainable you still have to look back at that map and you will realize that there isn’t a whole lot of room in the Northeast, East Coast, Southeast, mid South and West Coasts where you are within 100 miles of one of those areas. That leaves the inland Midwest which is growing. If you really want to see something interesting, Google a nighttime photo of the United States to see the population density. It is eye opening.

  41. How far, and where they go will probably be determined by factors some have already mentioned. Fuel availability, weather, if there are major traffic issues, etc.
    We’ve already learned that they will seek resources in the outlying areas.
    What they do probably more determined by who they are, how they have been trained.
    We’ve witnessed lawlessness in the past couple of years. That is very concerning to put it mildly.
    It appears that our society is ripe for revolution.
    Let us pray that it’s revival instead.

    1. i believe most will sit in their homes waiting for help from FEMA and others until they realize that help is not coming. and by then it will be to late for them. they won’t get far having used up their resources waiting.
      its going to be really bad for most in the cities and the suburbs. this nothing new, it has happened before and not to many years ago with major hurricanes. Puerto Rico is a territory of the US and supposedly under our protection but it has still not received much help from our government from the 2017 storms that wrecked that island. the little help that they have had, has been from volunteer’s and private organisations. never count on the government to help you out. you’ll be waiting a long time.
      could you imagine living on the west coast if a really major earthquake were to happen and all services were disrupted for months. PG and E would shutdown down everything statewide for fire precautions now because of the fires started from their transmission lines in the last few years and the ongoing lawsuits against them.
      it wouldn’t be good. cities like LA and SF would most likely be cinders in a few weeks from the campfires.
      i pray that it never happens.
      i truly don’t wan’t to appear like a fear monger. but the older i get the more paranoid i become. it’s a true curse.
      i guess it just comes with the territory.

      1. nyscout, I wouldn’t call $36.5 billion of US taxpayer money “not much and “little.” Gross mismanage and fraud by PR government is largely to blame for the conditions that still prevail on that island.

        1. Anony Mee,
          and yep, that’s exactly what happen’s when our government just throw’s money away at something instead of actually helping.
          the US is going to send Afghanistan $308 million for ” humanitarian assistance “. do you think that one nickle of that will end up going to the people who truly need it.
          ha, that’s a good one. how much ammo could you buy with that.
          the point is, never depend on someone else to come help you. they may come to help. it just depends on how large the scope of the problem is and where. never think their priorities are focused on us.

        2. nyscout, Yep. For a touch of interesting timing, check out

  42. Good point. But in its early days, who ever is in office will try to do what Dennis suggested

  43. Wife went with our son and DIL to the stores last Wednesday.
    First thing she says to me when she gets home.
    “Plant twice as much as you were planning. There’s gonna be shortages of vegetables for sure…”
    Most of us have been saying it for at least a year or more.Bad weather,poor crops,unrest,general craziness on top of the coof. Shortages in all things and it probably won’t get better for awhile.
    The sheep are still being sheep so not much you can do but pray for those poor pilgims…

  44. Spot on, I believe the explorer Cortez after he had traveled far and wide wrote that no society is more then 30 days away from total cannibalism……he experienced it first hand, and we all know we live in a target rich environment. We as a people deny the unthinkable, but accept the inevitable.

  45. Retired, prepping since the 1970s learning the survival skills as I moved from state to state while working for the “government” held SAP clearances while working on social/economic disaster models.

    Kudos to all of you with your own assumptions and thoughts about doomsday what if’s……feds are the biggest prepping group in existence.

    I have lived in 16 states in my lifetime, urban and metro…..and by choice gravitated to the high deserts of Nevada, from a government perspective, all regions, then all metro areas, are identified, categorized, for the “event” warranted.

    Bottom line, there will be no free movement by citizens, containment and control will be the priority…. The movie escape from New York, is a practical comparison, and govt plans like operation garden plot are the real deal.

    Transcend yourself to a broad spectrum of what if by first looking at scenarios e.g. natural disaster, man made social economic then study your regions by population and terrains.

    Now consider differences between a emp, versus civil war…then apply those down the line, your inner self and common sense are worth listening to.

    Example a major catastrophe emp event that wipes out all electronics now take a 100 nuclear power plants 84 of which are east of the Mississippi their back up generators are toast and meltdown is 4 days the resulting contaminated effect area will be whole states not just 50 mile radius.

    You won’t be worrying about food and water, nor roving zombies, or mass migration….folks there won’t be any. This is just one scenario….get the picture.

    We have to expand our thinking to not limit ourselves to our limited small window mindset is going to be better then understanding a bigger view and it’s reality.

  46. I grew up in a small desert town 50 miles from a red-yellow-green stoplight and 35 miles from an interstate. I suggest safety is not just distance from population center but also from interstates. My future retirement home will be 40 miles from interstate highway, 70 miles from a million person county but within 150 miles of a very good hospital, in a state that respects liberty and low taxes. Any suggestions??

  47. I grew up in a small desert town 50 miles from a red-yellow-green stoplight and 35 miles from an interstate. I suggest safety is not just distance from population center but also from interstates. My future retirement home will be 40 miles from interstate highway, 70 miles from a million person county but within 150 miles of a very good hospital, in a state that respects liberty and low taxes. Any suggestions??

    1. Hoosier for 5 more years,

      I’m in NW Arkansas….about 40 miles as the crow flies, 70 miles by road from the closest interstate, over 100 miles from the most populated county in the state which has far less than a million people, but has two very fine hospitals plus a dedicated heart hospital….respects liberty….does have state income tax and sales taxes, but property taxes are pretty low.

    2. North Alabama. Near Huntsville. great area that fits all your criteria.

  48. If we are being honest, we know who causes 90% of the problems in everyday life and it’s best to avoid these just the same during a situation described above.

  49. They have had suitcase nuclear bomb for years now. Tho they may not have the power of a hundred pounder it still can effect large areas. Living outside a major city is risky. You still might get the fall out. This could contaminate you fresh water, food source and or your stocked provisions.
    As far a not having a ride, well maybe you can get your hands on a good bike with a small trailer behind it. Working animals can pull a good size load provided you have a horse, mule or others animals.
    Power. You can live without power, trust me. An air conditioner is not a priority. Cell phone, that also you don’t need to survive but try telling that to some people. Running water is nice but I have several places that is natural spring water but again that could be compromised.
    I know there are lot of ways to keep your house on electricity but most will not. People will become more like gang’s to try and take what you have.
    Desperate people do desperate things especially when life and death are involved. You must be committed, survival is about brains, bronze and pure gut instinct. It you are challenged you must make decisions, some not so high among the society standards but if it keeps you group alive that is the goal.
    There has been so many movies about after the bombs drop. I believe they are very underrated to the scale of collapse and trying to stay alive. Make no mistake, you will want to Bug Out and stay out of any place that has people. When can you associate yourself with others? When the trucks run and the stores open, but that could take weeks and months maybe years to get going.
    No, my strategy is to Bug Out. Once I’m at camp I will stay there.

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