Rural Land for an Urban Prepper, by J.D.

Growing up in a poor family with very little expendable income I began mowing lawns at the age of 10 in order to afford some of the luxuries in life I saw my other friends have. At the age of 10 that was video games, books, music or movies. Later it warped into motorsports and “big boy toys.” Mowing lawns at the age of 10 consisted of me pushing my lawnmower, weed eater, and gas around town until I was able to drive at the age of 16. This was no small order for a young kid growing up in a very small mountain town where everything seemed to be uphill. When I was able to drive myself and my equipment around in the back of my old Jeep Cherokee it opened a whole new market and I began to work at numerous rural properties. It was then that my love of land and real estate began. Until graduating high school I always had numerous jobs while still mowing lawns and I made good money for my age which allowed me to have expendable income and be able to help take some of the burden off my family. I dreamed of someday owning a piece of land all my own.

At the age of 18 I left for the Army with no selected duty station and was listed as ‘needs of the army’. I was blessed enough that the Army needed people in Alaska. In all my spare time between training deployments and overseas deployments I would explore the state and was immediately impressed with the sturdiness of the residents and how so many people lived off-grid in such harsh conditions. My obsession with land and real estate grew as I dreamed of owning my own chunk and building a homestead of my own.

I left the active army of 4 years and transitioned to the national guard of my home mountain state and attempted to try my hand at full-time college. I quickly learned a 22-year-old that had seen many training deployments throughout the US and a combat deployment overseas did not fit in very well with 18-year-old freshman. I began looking for fulltime work and was blessed to earn employment with one of the larger metro law enforcement agencies. This was the start of the 2008 financial collapse and I was blessed to have a well-paying job. This allowed me to purchase my first property as I saw property values crash. A small house that needed a lot of work in a small town close enough to commute to the city I worked in. While it was not my dream rural property, I saw the value in fixing the place up and being able to make some money when the market recovered.

During the financial crisis of 2008 and on I was largely protected. I had a good well-paying job that would not be eliminating positions anytime soon. It was during this time and the recovery I realized how terrible city living was and the dangerous underbelly many people never see minus the few “big” stories that made the news. I discovered preparedness and voraciously read all the preparedness fiction and nonfiction books I could get my hands on. By this time, I had a wife with a child on the way. Home values had improved and I had considerable equity in my home. I sold this home and rolled the profit into a lovely mountain house on one acre that I thought would be a good start for my homesteading dream. This mountain house was still close enough to continue working at my job and my commute was a stunning 45-minute drive through the mountains.

I quickly realized my once ideal mountain house was nothing more than another suburb despite the mountains and larger home lots. The area was quickly being flooded with other metro dwellers who still wanted to be close to work yet live in the mountains. Traffic was horrendous. The stores in the town were packed with people. My love of real estate of property remained and I was constantly looking at land. All land that met my homestead criteria (remoteness, water, land usability, etc..) was far outside of my budget, too far to realistically commute to work, and still had the same problem of just being too close to the massive urban area I worked in.

At this point many might be wondering why I remained at my employment instead of finding a rural area to work in that would fit my criteria for my homestead. While slightly more complicated it boils down to my employment. I love the job in law enforcement and the city I work for. My co-workers are all very like-minded. The city is well run and treats its employees well. I make a great income and have disposable income. I enjoy the “big city” aspect of the job and the excitement of being busy and going call to call. With the world events at the time the urgency of being prepared and knowing the need for a true piece of land that could sustain my family when the inevitable collapse happened. I was unwilling to leave my dream employment. It’s hard to find not only a job you love but an employer that treats you well. During this time, I continued working numerous jobs in addition to my full-time law enforcement employment. This allowed me to have extra disposable income and live a comfortable life with my family.

This led to my compromise. Neither of us wanted to give up our life style, employment, and friends in the metro area. Property values in my mountain state had sky rocketed and I had good equity in my home. The decision was made to sell again and with the profit purchase a very nice home in a small community close enough to commute to my work. With the extra money I had enough to put a down payment on a true piece of land that would be sustainable for my family when the time came to move.

My heart has always been in the small mountain town I grew up in but I could not afford a 50% pay cut, on top of reduced benefits and a much higher cost of living, to move there with my family. Since leaving my home town for the Army I have visited numerous times a year. Despite not living there in over 15 years at this point I could still walk down the street and run into numerous people that knew me. That type of community is priceless. My search for land was focused on this area. This brings us to the main point of this article. Many of us are in similar situations. Our employment is based in large metro areas. Employment is good, the money is good, our friends and social network is based in this metro area. Finding an affordable and practical homestead within commuting distance of that metro area is unrealistic.

Owning property is more affordable than many believe and there are many benefits. My search for land needed to meet the following criteria:

Close to my home mountain town – I already visited numerous times a year. It’s a community I know and am known in. This allowed for dual purpose that made it more appealing to my family.

Remoteness: The land needs to be isolated enough to be a realistic homestead for the future societal collapse. Yet close enough to be able to vacation there and be close enough to services of larger areas.

Survivability: Live water on or close to the property. Good hunting aspects. Good growing properties.

I was able to find a great priced property that met all my criteria. My 40 acres is close enough to my home town to visit fairly easy. It is rural enough people don’t just wander past. It backs up to national forest land and while there is no live water on the land it is a short walk through National Forest to get to water. There are no utilities and everyone in the area is completely off-grid. Access is year-round though harder in the winter. It would be a surprise to see a sedan in the area during the summer and you’re not getting there in the winter without 4×4. Hunting is fantastic with every big game animal often seen on my land and in my traditional hunting areas.

Owning this chunk of land is multipurpose. It’s a destination. It’s a vacation spot close to my home town. It’s a place my children can spend time recreating in the outdoors in my childhood stomping grounds. It’s a monetary investment if I am ever in a position where I want to sell it. It’s an investment in the survivability of my family when the time comes. It is a piece of mind.

Owning a piece of land is more affordable than many realize. I was able to find a 30-year loan and while I was able to do a 0% down, I still put a good down payment on it. Payments are a little over 300 a month. Cut your corporate monthly corporate addiction and you almost have the land payment. While I earn a good living, I support a family of 6 on one income and my side jobs. If I can do it, anyone can.


I have an old 1997 5th Wheel that is in great condition that remains at the property year-round. I built a deck off it. I leave a couple of my old trucks on the property. I haul water to the property in a large tank that lasts a year worth of visits. Sewage is hauled out once or twice a year to a dump station. The area is heavily wooded but the area around the 5th wheel is cleared out. I know the neighbors who are very like minded and help keep an eye on the place. Electricity is a combination of solar and gas generators. I have extra tools and equipment prepositioned up there. Extra supplies are on site. Well hidden and secure. The property is covered in game cameras with a couple solar powered live cameras that run off cell towers. I have a tractor there with attachments and continue to improve the land.

While this all may sound lavish, I assure you it was all done as frugally and budget-friendly as possible. Used equipment is your friend. Harbor Freight has a wealth of tools that are cost-effective and, in my experience, have excellent reliability when used and maintained properly. I purchase well-made brand name equipment when its something my safety depends on. I work hard to maintain a comfortable lifestyle for my family that allows this but I never let work become the focus. While I work full time in law enforcement, I have a very part-time LE teaching job and do real estate. These jobs allow extra income while having a very minimal impact on my family time. Family must always come first.

Is the land in perfect survival conditions? Not even close. But it is far better than nothing and continues to improve every single visit. Future plans include a small cabin to replace the 5th wheel. I have plans for a dedicated garden area with wildlife fencing. Septic system is on the list. Every visit moves me closer to these goals as budget allows. Is this progress as fast as I would like? Not even close. But a few hours of labor a day at the land before exploring and spending quality time with the family add up fast over time.

Full-time Home:

My family of six lives in a small town in a small development. It is far enough removed from the metro area that I can easily commute yet be isolated from the crime and chaos that comes with city living. The remainder of my supplies not at the property are positioned and staged ready to move in a moments notice. Our two primary vehicles each have gas tank ranges that easily place us at the property with over half a tank to spare. Numerous routes are planned to get away when the time comes. We maintain a small garden and continue to build our surplus as the budget and time allows. I try to average a visit every month to the property to keep it maintained and continue improvements. These trips are working and vacation trips. Staying where we are allows a great job with great income, close to friends and family, and all the amenities of the city. Like-minded trusted friends know of the place and a loose plan is in place to group there if need be. It has a long way to go before this is possible but it COULD work if it has to. It continues to get better and more realistic. Until then it’s a work in progress. Its forward movement. It is far, far better than nothing.

Is this the ideal survival situation? Nope far from it. But I cannot afford a full-time survival retreat at this time. This balance allows me to be prepared for an uncertain future. It allows multiple uses for the land and it an investment. My dream? Get to a position where I could take the 50% pay cut in addition to reduced retirement and benefits and move there full time. Until then this works great for my family. Maybe it is an option for your family. Land is easier to find and more affordable than many believe. The multi-use of the property makes it easier to justify. I have been walking this path for years but it is never too late to start.

I think we all see the writing on the wall with our current political environment. With the current social unrest, economic impact of COVID-19, world politics, and many others more and more people are seeking the rural lifestyle. The pendulum of the political environment swings more wildly election cycle after election cycle. Eventually, things will break and our great social divide will need to be resolved. I think many agree this reckoning does not look pretty.



  1. In 2005 I left a beautiful quiet rural town in Southern California and returned to Montana, because I saw the first signs that it was coming apart. Just the other day I found that BLM had been attempting to instigate mayhem in that small rural town for the last two months, and the patriots were rising up. Their activity is not limited to the big cities. It is organized, everywhere and spreading. They will not stand a chance in Montana. Yes, I am living ‘poor’, but there is big game every where, a strong running mountain creek, and my garden just outside my door. Yes, it has been a struggle especially as I’m old and partly crippled, but I’ve had the opportunity to become adapted to this life during good times while the learning curve was not steep. Life will not change as much for myself once this goes full blown. Leave Babylon before it burns.

      1. Two comments in this reply:

        1.Tunnel Rabbit should have said, “In 2005 I left a beautiful quiet rural town in Southern California and returned to Montana, because …” ~~>’I like to work!!!’

        Me, GGHD, = Living way out in the boonies requires working most of the time. [And yes, I have lived on a farm; for only two years] … People out in the country just seem to Eat, Sleep and Work. When they’re are NOT working, they’re walking somewhere to start working at a new project.

        The Redoubt Region has some safe spots near towns and cities, where people can watch television, fish all day or just relax a bit more. … Some people (like me) were raised as a City-Man, and just can’t keep up with a Country Raised Man or Woman. …
        +What makes America such a great country; a lot of people like to work diligently! = God Bless America!
        ****** ******

        2. People need to be living in a safe place, or else keep their guns handy.

        “Oregon State Police are no longer on the ground in Portland, Oregon, where nightly riots continued on Thursday. The agency said the departure was based on the city’s decision not to prosecute rioters charged with crimes.” …
        …….. “The Oregon State Police is continually reassessing our resources and the needs of our partner agencies and at this time we are inclined to move resources back to counties where persecution of criminal conduct is still a priority,” Captain Timothy Fox, public information officer, said in a statement released on Thursday.”
        [Breitbart August 14, 2020]
        “George Soros-Backed Group Gave Huge Donation to County Prosecutor Who Dropped Jussie Smollett Charges” … …. The Soros funding came as part of the billionaire’s effort to put radical leftists into county attorney and prosecutor offices ~~~>all across the country. And Foxx has been part of the Soros plan for years, already. She received $408,000 from the foreign billionaire when she first ran for her office in 2016.”
        [Breitbart March 6, 2020]

        Me, GGHD, = There is a directed plan to destroy the American Economy, and also release criminals from the Justice System. … Many of the criminals will then prey on Honest Americans. [This seems to be happening all over America. The Fake News, Wall Street, and many Politicians support such destruction and harm; they at least acquiesce to all the harm.]
        This is all being done to obtain political power and wealth.
        The Good Book: “For the love of money is the root of all evil …”

        Survialblog has excellent advice about how to survive these turbulent times.

        1. Seems to me that little Georgie Soros has committed serious crimes against the USA. Treason comes to mind, as well as fomenting acts of terrorism, funding terrorism, bribery of politicians and bureaucrats, and money laundering, among others. I would think a special forces team, or teams, could be used to bring Soros and his son and any other member of his family that is involved in these obvious crimes, to swift justice. I would also think that the Open Society Foundation and all of it’s subsidiaries could be closed down as they are the conduit for funding this terrorism through BLM and AntiFA. The management of these foundations and NGO’s could also be disappeared.

          Actions such as these would strike terror where it should lie. Terror in the hearts and minds of the likes of Bill and Melinda Gates and their foundation, Bill and Hillary Clinton and their foundations, the Obamas and their foundation, and any other globalists and globalist funded entities that perform the same functions as the Soros’ and their corrupt black hoodie gangs. Serious crimes against the USA and the American people are being committed. To date, no one is taking serious action to bring these criminals to justice. That needs to change, ASAP.

          One can dream, can’t one?

          1. Charles,

            Yes, it is true that Soro$ has committed crimes against humanity. As far as him being brought to justice … Hmm. It would be nice, but in all reality I seriously doubt (99% certain) that it will happen. Because, as you point out in your second paragraph, there are people like Bill and Melinda Gate$ that also walk this planet and money talk$ and buy$ people off. Seems I remember in the “good old days” they called it “Hu$h money” or $omething like that.

            A while back I ran across several interesting videos that you might get a laugh or two from. They are:

            The Clintons Went Down To Georgia

            Liar Liar Pants On Fire (HILARIOUS) Hillary Song


            Oh, by the way, think of it this way. The Biblical character by the name of Daniel was thrown into a den of lions, but he came out alive and the perpetrators of the evil plot to snuff him out were thrown in the den of lions after he came out, but they did not come out. They were “big kitty food”. We win in the end, but for some of us it seems the end can’t happen soon enough.

            Peace Brother,

        2. If I recall, the Oregon police quickly shot down Lavoy Finnicum, as shown on the drone video.

          Did they shoot any of the arsonists who were actually trying to kill people by burning an occupied building?

      2. Age is relative. I have had friends who were old at 60 due bad health, and some who did not get old until they where 80. And some folks just run around like teenagers, full of life, despite their ailments. For them, age is more a state of mind.

        1. TR … what a wise statement… even though it may have PC undertones …LOL… I guess I am in the category of “ run around like teenagers “ … The Lord has blessed me with great health… my reply to others “ age is just a number “ … i guess I am gonna have to change bait to try and catch / reel you in… I believe I would enjoy sitting with you, sharing a glass of ice tea, and pick your brain… God bless you,TR….Robert

    1. Oops!

      I saw your ‘BLM’, and instantly thought ‘I knew it!, those Federal Bureaucrats Of Land Management are up to no-good again’.

      A couple-three moments later, I realized you aren’t writing about bureaucrats and mayhem this time.
      You are referring to terrorists and mayhem.
      Got it.

      1. Hey Marge, I have the same problem every time I see BLM too! lol. Except we always called it the Bureau of Lecherous Men. I wish the Burn, Loot, and Murder crowd could some up with another acronym.

    2. Glad you got a property you like. I have been looking for my piece of property for awhile now. Imagine my shock, (and a fair amount of anger) when I called a bank inquiring on a loan and was told they required 35 percent down, and only gave 1,2,or 5 year balloon notes at 5 percent interest! No fixed rate long term notes period.

      I the called my Credit Union. Same thing. The only difference is they required 25 percent down, same balloon notes. but the interest rate was 6 percent!

      It didn’t matter how good my credit rating or history was either. They said this policy on raw land was across the board and not negotiable .

      1. Missouri Mule, shop around more. You can still find almost any term you want for a land loan. I was able to get one with only 5% down (put more down) and 30 year fixed rate. There are many other lending options available now as well. I think youll be able to find something that fits your needs!

  2. JD! A well written and thoughtful article with insights about your life path and experiences, where you are presently, and where you’re headed. The truth is this… Preparedness living is a journey much more than it is a destination. We all have checklists and goals, and those continue to develop with time, the development of ideas and information, and our resources (including time and money). We pray that you and your family can continue to propel yourselves forward toward ever more independence. You have a tremendous opportunity to develop “the forty”, and you may want to consider as many low-tech, low-maintenance, self-sustaining features as possible. We pray for your every success!

  3. JD, your article provides inspiration for those that are still sitting on the fence. There are many who believe it is past time to relocate and yet have not made that move. Just yesterday we made an inquiry into property. Often the details of a move can feel overwhelming yet many including you have done it. Definitely inspirational!

  4. Great article J.D.! You brought up many good points.

    The biggest mistake I see people make when buying rural real estate is buying far too big of a property. They fail to realize the maintenance and upkeep required to keep nature at bay on 40-100 acres of land, especially as we grow older. Add to that the difficulty of actually defending it if buying for SHTF/WROL retreat. You are looking at a minimum of a squad-sized force to hold and defend 40+ acres.

    As my parents approach 80 years of age, over the last decade it has fallen upon me as their only child and son to help maintain a 400-acre farm that has been in our family since 1850(originally 2200 acres of apple orchards). I can tell you from firsthand experience that keeping even 100 acres of it maintained is a costly and backbreaking task, and I am no spring chicken either. Not to mention it would require a company of trained men and women to defend it. My advice is to stay small (20 acres or less) and have plenty of good neighbors.

    1. D.D., great points. I relocated to the Redoubt and live on 12 wooded acres. I’m the little guy in the neighborhood as most folks have 20-100 and the farmers in the valley below have larger spreads that feel small since they’re so open.

      Other than one very private one, I’ve been able to forge relationships with my neighbors, a mix of families with small kids all the way to older retirees.

      Living on 100 wooded acres with no neighbors just means you’re an isolated target come SHF.

      1. Thanks, Michael, and your place sounds wonderful! Perfect size!

        I was one of those people that believed a few family members and I could defend a large property against packs of lawless banditos after SHTF. My wife and I are very active in supporting combat veterans groups so we “hired” (a day of whitetail hunting, steaks on the grill, and cold beer as payment) a few with special operations experience to examine our properties and point out the weaknesses and strengths. I learned that our veterans are extremely knowledgeable and that as few as five semi-trained and determined enemies could wreak havoc to the best-laid plans on a large property, no matter how remote. It was a shocking blow to my Ego but a slap in the face with reality I sorely needed and appreciated. I recommend this form of consulting as a “must-do” to anyone.

  5. Neighbors make good fences… I have been approaching like-minded neighbors over the past month building consensus on how to best defend the 10 homes on our dead-end street. We have come up with a plan that will likely deter casual trouble-makers, but will not stand up against a determined force due to the terrain features. We have a natural ingress choke point (bridge over gator-infested waters) which makes the entrance easy to defend, but we have almost 400 yards of RR tracks on our flank which we don’t have the manpower to defend if determined zombies are on the march. Hopefully, the zombies will move on to easier pickings if we make a solid stand at the bridge, but we all know we are vulnerable to a determined mob that puts a bit of field craft into their assault plan. It is nice to know we at least have the beginnings of a strategy and a squad to make the zombies work for it…

  6. Hey J.D. good story, thanks for posting. You sound like you’re way ahead of most people and have been since you were ten. 🙂

    Telesilla of Argos beat me to the punch on the main advice I would give anyone who has yet to develop their property fully, which is to incorporate as many low-tech, low-maintenance, self-sustaining features as possible. As I’ve mentioned a time or two on this blog, my biggest goal for self-reliance is to be living in such a way that when the SHTF, I wont notice much compared to the majority of people. So the second piece of advice I would give someone would be to start living in such a way that when you finally move to your property, there won’t be a huge adjustment. The average America uses 970 kilowatt hours of electricity each month, I use less than 100. Make a game of seeing how low you can get your energy usage so that when you move to your homestead, you’ll have a much more realistic idea of how many solar panels you’ll need. Since you mentioned building a “small” cabin (which IMO it’s crazy to build anything but a small cabin if you’re really thinking we’re headed for a TEOTWAWKI situation or even just an off-grid lifestyle), which won’t have a lot of room for clutter, start now to get rid of as many gadgets as you can and start living the small-cabin lifestyle.

    I would also strongly recommend that you start designing your cabin starting yesterday if you haven’t already. Whenever you think of a new feature, or read about one here on SB, write the idea down and keep them all in a file somewhere, or in one of those composition notebooks. As you are driving around or surfing the net, take photos of features you like and keep those in a file as well. Have a folder on your computer called Living the Dream or whatever suits you, and store all your electronic information there so you know where to find it. Photos of home features you like, SB articles on what to incorporate into a retreat, etc. The sooner you get to designing your house, the better the final product will be. All of us have regrets about things we wish we had done differently when building our homesteads (I could write a book on the subject!) so the sooner you start drawing out and planning your home, garden, and shop, the happier you will be with the final product. There are way too many variables to deal with and you’ll never think of them all in a 3-month period, but you’ll think of a whole lot of them in a 3-year period. I built my shop roof facing due south and so that the roof angle was the exact degrees I needed to mount my solar panels at this latitude. But I totally should have attached the well house to the main house instead of the shop for winter heating purposes. So soon old, so late smart. Again, the sooner you can start planning, the more time you’ll have to figure this stuff out.

    Start other folders called, for example, Alternative Building Methods, Self-Reliance, Bees, Solar Panels, Solar Projects, Alternative Heating, Gardening & Canning, Biogas, Water Heating, Cabinetmaking, Water, etc. While collecting information on these subjects, you’ll come up with a zillion more ideas on what to incorporate into your homestead before you pound the first nail so you’ll be much more likely to get it right the first time with fewer regrets later, regrets like many of us have. If you want to get a lot of ideas in a hurry, click on “Images” then google something like “alternative building ideas.” Save the best ones to your folders.

    If you don’t own a table saw yet, I’d get one and start to become proficient. I built my own kitchen and pantry cabinets and only a professional would be able to tell I had never built cabinets before. The thousands of dollars I saved not only paid for the table saw but all of my other shop tools as well. And you’ll use it over and over and over again. I even made my own double-paned storm windows (the ones that didn’t need to open) with my table saw. I saved $850 on one pair of those from what the commercial window place was charging. If you haven’t already, start collecting and reading books on wiring, plumbing, cabinet making, etc. Those will give you lots more ideas before you even start building.

    I don’t know how a person can learn to think out of the box but that’s also a very good trait for someone building their own home. If you don’t have to worry about building codes and inspectors, you can really customize your home just how you want it. I’ve lived with poorly draining plumbing for too much of my life. When I built my cabin, I solved it by thinking out of the box. My kitchen sink drain goes through the wall directly outside into a box. Inside the box is a laundry sink which drains into the normal 4″ waste line, and inside the sink is a milk crate lined with window screen. I took that little “X” out of the sink drain that holds the stopper (the stopper doesn’t need that to stay in place) so I have a 2″ hole I call my garbage disposal. Now when I pull the stopper, the sink drains in less than ten seconds. Twice a year I have to empty the milk crate. Think out of the box.

    When I was working in the Big City, I couldn’t stand it anymore so went into my boss’ office and told him I’d take a 50% cut in pay if he’d let me out of there to work from home somewhere rural. He said heck yes so I moved to the middle of Toejam Nowhere and have never looked back. Yes, it was a big financial hit, but I didn’t want to start living my dream when I was 70 and too old to accomplish many of the things I wanted to. Yes, I eat more beans and rice than my neighbors, yes I joke about having taken a vow of poverty (my job only lasted 4 years), but I’ve woke up every morning for the past 10 years saying, “Wow, I can’t believe I’m here,” so I echo the comments of the others who have said time is of the essence so get moved as soon as possible.

    I better quit blabbing now before this turns into a feature-length article.

    Good luck with your project J.D., it sounds like you really have your head on straight and your finished homestead should be a sight to behold.

    P.S., 40 acres sounds awesome. I only have 21 and only three are developed into pasture, gardens and orchard. The other 18 are a lifetime supply of firewood free for the cutting, bird watching, cedar poles for the garden fence and trellises, mushroom hunting, shooting range, bee swarm trap placement, and a hundred other things. And 21 acres do an excellent job of keeping the neighbors at a distance.

    1. St. Funogas… From your post: ” As I’ve mentioned a time or two on this blog, my biggest goal for self-reliance is to be living in such a way that when the SHTF, I wont notice much compared to the majority of people.”

      This is exactly the goal! Well said, and sums up our objectives as well!

    2. The average America uses 970 kilowatt hours of electricity each month, I use less than 100.

      Under one hundred. I am imprssed, brother.

      Carry on in grace

        1. StF, I have one word, the practice of which I had to learn and relearn in bootcamp: Adapt.

          Saying it with a smile to guests while handing a fan helps me keep my friends.

          Carry on in grace

    3. I like your 21 Acres. somewhere over 22 is a 1000 x 1000 ft. square which just sounds about right to me and enough for those neighbors. In my search I tend to find 11-13 acres or 45-100 acres. Maybe the mid sized lots are out there, but they aren’t for sale.

  7. It’s sad, in my messed up state if I left trucks and a trailer on a rural property unattended for a long time I’d expect them to be stolen/vandalized. Sounds like that’s not as much a concern where you are and I’m glad for you.

    1. Notcal, I am pretty lucky. Relationships with your neighbors is key. My immediate neighbor on 80 acres keeps a close eye on the place. Another neighbor down the road drives by almost daily and gives me a heads up when he sees any activity. Its a nice feeling when a few hours after arriving, I get a message from a neighbor asking if I am around because they saw tire tracks. So far my only problem has been mice having parties in the trucks but I finally found a product to solve that. The property is heavily wooded so you cannot see anything from the road or even the start of my driveway before the gate. When I cut in the driveway I took great effort to hide it as much as possible. To the normal person going 25 down the road unless your paying attention you will fly right past it. Leaving the area its a little more obvious but still easy to miss. The property has numerous trail cameras (reactive unfortunately when I visit and review the pictures) but I setup a fairly decent security camera system that runs off a cell tower wifi hot spot and a small solar setup. Hasnt happened yet but if some mischief is afoot its a quick call to a neighbor to check it out. Cant stress enough how important those relationships are. To return the favor I am always very generous with a cold beverage and a meal when I am around and always volunteer tractor work.

  8. Thanks for your story JD. I had a similar background in Kansas, but when Y2K came around I needed to really get away from civilization. I built a hide away on a wilderness island in Alaska. Sounds crazy, but with unlimited supply of salmon and Elk, and firewood it’s a good start to self sufficiency.

    I bought 5 acres with a cabin and an outhouse. I moved my 2 years supply of freeze dried food and hunkered down. When nothing happened I decided to stay there. In the ensuing 20 years, I’ve turned the place into a comfortable house that is self sufficient. I lived there year round for a decade, but now only part time.

    2020 has changed my mind. I’m back in the 1999 mindset and feel time has come to reconsider this gem in the wilderness. I don’t expect this coming crisis to fly by like Y2K did.

    Being 20 years older now, I don’t want to do it by myself. I’m looking for a stone mason and a carpenter and perhaps a few other like minded folks with valuable skills to join me. This does not need to be just a bug out place, this can be a truly sustainable long term solution.

    Anyone interested can see details and photos of the property at Rock Island Lodge dot com. It is listed for sale, but I plan to pull it off the market when I find others who are ready and willing to invest.

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