Retreat Owner Profile: Dr. and Mrs. Epsilon

Editor’s Introductory Note:  It has been several years since we’ve posted any retreat owner profiles. Here is one that illustrates what can be accomplished when someone consistently plans and prepares, over the  course of several years.  It has just been added to our Profiles page, as Profile #24. – JWR

Present home/retreat: 14-year-old stucco one-story home on 18 fenced arable acres with plentiful irrigation rights and a perennial stream in Western Colorado; 3,600 square-foot house; heated by solar, propane furnace, and 2 wood stoves; fenced 25-tree orchard and 150-vine vineyard plus two gardens; 5 outbuildings; 2 miles from nearest small town; 270 road miles or 5 hours from large metropolitan area.

Annual property tax: $2,000 per year.

Ages: 77 & 76, no children at home.

Annual Income: $72,000 to $200,000

Professions & Education: Retired (He – retired geologist/mining executive with PhD; She – retired elementary school teacher with MS); public company board member.

Investments: Silver coins and bullion; gold coins and bullion; cash; gold company and other stocks; many shares in a major rare earth company with principal property in NE Wyoming; 1/3 interest in a 100-acre remote family homestead at a lake in another state.

Vehicles: Late model 4WD SUV, 4WD sedan, older (1980) 4WD Jeep, and older 4WD diesel pickup truck; 4WD ATV; 4WD UTV; 2 bicycles; older John Deere and Kubota tractors; several trailers.

Firearms: Four AR-15 rifles; five 12-gauge shotguns (2 tactical); two 20 gauge shotguns (1 tactical); one 30-06 with scope, one 7 mm with scope, one 6 mm with scope, one 32 special, and three .22 LR rifles; eight handguns from .22 LR to 40 S&W.

Ammunition stock: 50,000 rounds of various ammunitions; including 30,000 rounds of .22 LR; 4,000 rounds of .223/5.56 mm; greater than 1000 rounds of each other caliber; plus some reloading equipment.

Night vision equipment: One Weaver Nightview scope; one ATN NVM-14 scope.

Fuel and power: 300 gallons of propane; 300 gallons of stabilized gas; 300 gallons of stabilized diesel fuel; twelve 260 Watt solar panels tied to grid; two portable 90-watt solar panels with charge controller and inverter; additional thermal solar setup is sufficient to help heat water tank and the house; two wood burning stoves with many cords of dry wood under roof; cooking on wood stove possible with fry pans and stove-top ovens; two cast iron chimaneas; Plus 2 tons of coal under cover.

Water: Shallow well at 38-foot depth with 15-foot static water level; gravity fed spring on property with 3.5 cubic foot per second flow rate; other gravity fed water rights (6 to 9 cfs) for 10 acres of irrigation; total water rights for approximately 20 acre-feet per year; 5,000 gallon cistern buried; capability to filter and treat 36,000 gallons.

Food supply: Two years of food for 2 people; supplemented by garden, orchard, and vineyard.

Farm animals: One medium-size dog; 11 chickens; consideration for future rabbits and goats.
Communication gear: One ICOM 7300 HAM radio; two receivers for AM/FM HAM; two CB radios; six hand-held Motorola 2-way radios, 6 Baofeng hand-held portable radios.

Personal: He – adequate carpenter, farmer, lumberjack, hunter, and fisherman; highly qualified in hiking, wilderness activities, and geological activities. 
She – adequate seamstress, and gardener; highly qualified elementary school teacher.

Retreat location: Chosen for long growing season; well-known fruit orchard and vineyard area, and plenty of gravity-fed irrigation water from nearby 10,000-foot mesa; plus a prolific spring on property.

Drawbacks to location: region subject to periodic (every 5 to 10 years) droughts so potentially less irrigation water available in some years.

Who will share the retreat: 2 daughters and their families, 1 son and his family; potential for 11 additional people (6 adults and 5 children) for a possible total of 13 people; concern they will have difficulty traveling to retreat following a disaster/collapse and in anticipation we have to extend considerably the food supply.

What type of disaster is likely: financial collapse; hyperinflation and currency devaluation; possible, but less likely, EMP strike.

How long might the disaster last: At least one year, but more likely five to ten years.

What is the worst case scenario: Collapse of all levels of government and lack of any law enforcement, collapse of the electrical power grid, followed by attempts at martial law, followed by widespread lawlessness.

What personal circumstances shaped your preparations: growing up on a farm that was largely self-sufficient; no interest in ever working for or accepting unearned benefits from the government; concerns with growth and excessive spending of federal government and attempts to abridge the second amendment; Fed delaying the necessary changes in exchange for short-term gain; lack of people’s concerns about federal deficits and their assumption of continuing low interest rates; worry how, or if, the government will be able to pay interest on national debt, much less amortize it. Inflation or hyperinflation seems the most likely outcome; so concern that a worst-case scenario could develop with a collapse of the economy.