A recent trip 900 miles from home got me to thinking about what I’d face if the EMP/Solar Flare hit while I was that far away. As a result, I began making plans and thinking through the details of getting back home when that far from home and alone. This is the final part of this article series.
The Daily Grind
Every activity throughout the day should be focused on securing food, water, and shelter. You are in hunter-gatherer mode, and you need to behave accordingly, if you are going to make it.
Pay Attention To Your Feet
Pay particular attention to your feet. Change your socks, use foot powder, et cetera. If you can find a pair of cross trainers along the way, it wouldn’t be a bad thing. If you lose the ability to walk due to foot injuries, you are as good as dead.
Remember resources are now extremely limited, so conserve and use as little as possible. Once you are out of something, you have to assume that you are out of it permanently.
Shelter For Rest
Finding shelter for rest is extremely important. Knowing where you are going to stop can mean the difference between life and death. It doesn’t do any good to cover 10 additional miles, if it puts you on the side of the road in the middle of the Everglades or the Ghetto at night. Preplanning with mapped out routes will aid you in making these decisions.
Avoid Large Inhabited Areas
As the time passes the situation in cities and towns will grow more desperate. Avoid large inhabited areas like the plague. You’d be taking a huge risk with very little return to enter into, let’s say, Orlando, Atlanta, New Orleans, or even smaller cities like Mobile, Ocala, or Gainesville.
Walking Train Tracks
Walking train tracks has benefits, but it also has many drawbacks. Others will definitely be using this route, and where prey congregates predators follow.
Lookout For Abandoned Items
Be on the lookout for abandoned items. I do not advocate you stealing from anyone. Not only is it wrong, but it is a good way to get yourself into a violent encounter for what I believe is probably minimal return. Be careful with “abandoned” items. If it looks too good to be true, it probably is.
Keep Fires Small
Making fires will be necessary. Keep your fire small and limited. It will act as a beacon for all. So, keep it discreet.
Some Layer of Security
Sleeping near cell phone towers and remote power boxes because they are surrounded by chain link fences will provide for some layer of security.
Private Property Posting
If you see a private property posting, you need to weigh the risks of moving through these areas, especially several weeks into a TEOTWAWKI, because the owners will probably have shown up and you are likely to get encountered by well-armed men. Having to explain yourself to nervous people in a volatile situation like this is not my idea of ideal.
Remote Gas Stations
In the beginning of TEOTWAWKI, remote gas stations might be a place to find additional supplies. I don’t condone stealing, but if the station has been abandoned then we do what we need to do.
No Tent For Me
I, for one, would not sleep in a tent. It traps you inside, cuts down on your situational awareness, blinds you, and makes you stand out like a sore thumb. You can do what you want, but there’ll be no tent for me.
Fishing Skills and Snare Setting
Brush up on your fishing skills. Learning how to fish will save your life.
Also, study snare setting. It is important that you set them correctly and check them promptly.
Keep up on your dental hygiene. Brush and floss on a regular basis. Aside from the morale issue, severe health issues can occur from lack of proper dental hygiene.
This will be a fact of life in a TEOTWAWKI. The chances are great that you will have a violent encounter, so you must be prepared to use force, even deadly force, if necessary. There are some people who do not understand anything but the use of force, and you are going to have to deal with them appropriately. I don’t want to make light of the use of force, but like I said there are some who accept no other way. Keeping up on your firearms skills, your defensive tactics, and your physical fitness will help in a multitude of ways. As always, the Spirit should guide your decision.
After several weeks on the road, there is a chance that you’ll run into military units, especially in the south. My suggestion is that if you can avoid them, avoid them. If you can’t, it is important for you to remain very low key and humble. They will already be under a high level of stress, so the last thing you need to do is irritate a local Commanding Officer or cause some teenage kid to over react and start shooting. We all know what happens after that. If approaching, keep your hands in plain view and avoid quick, jerky type movements. I would be good to be personable, but keep it light-hearted.
I have said it before and I’ll say it again, avoid the police. Nothing good can come from contacting them in this situation. Remember that you are an outsider. If you decide to get confrontational with the police, you’ll most probably be dealt with swiftly and harshly. As a note, I want to say I am not down on the police, but the reality in a grid down situation is that supplies are limited and all it takes is one encounter with a “rogue officer” to end it all. So don’t take the chance.
Refugee Camps (Internment Camps)
Stay out of these places. If you enter, you will be stripped of any weapons you have. Your gear will be taken, and if you decide to leave you will not get your things back. This is possibly the worst thing you can do.
Bandits and Criminals
As the situation begins to deteriorate, bandits and criminals will become more common place. This is a problem that you’ll have to contend with more and more as your trek progresses. The first rule to dealing with them is avoiding them out right. This is not a tough guy competition or a make-the-world-safe-for-democracy endeavor. It is a get-home endeavor. Learning how to recognize an ideal ambush location and tell-tale signs of an impending ambush will be paramount for your survival. Chances are that criminals will have gained control of working vehicles and significant armaments. You are best to avoid them at all costs. If you have to deal with a small group of them, hit quick, hit hard, and then get out of the area ASAP. Grab what you can and go. It is hard to watch good people being abused, but you start getting heroic at this stage and in your situation, you are going to wind up in a shallow grave. Picking up long arms along the way will assist you in dealing with these maggots.
Charity is a wonderful thing. However, in this situation, it is not recommended. You have very limited supplies, and your number one goal needs to be getting home. Be charitable when you get to your extensive preps.
Never give up hope. It is never over until you are dead. I think about my 15 and nine year olds. They carry me through the day. Your loved ones need you, and they need you alive. They need your protection. Think about the day when you are reunited, as this will give you the strength you need to trudge on and keep your morale up. However, most importantly, in your darkest hours trust in the Spirit.
Good luck and God’s speed to you.
My Extended Get-Home Bag (EGOB)
In my extended get-home bag, I carry a variety of items. It consists of the following:
- LL Bean Backpack (intermediate sized)
- Pistol, concealable (follow applicable laws). I have a 9mm due to the availability of rounds. I carry at least 200 rounds and four magazines
- Pistol, .22LR (hunting small game). This is a good addition.
- Gun Cleaning Kit
- Folding Knife, multi-tool, or both
- Fire starters (multiple kinds) Bic lighters, matches, flint and steel, plus some type of starter
- SOG Tomahawk
- USMC K-Bar Fighting Knife
- First Aid Kit (IFAK) with tourniquet and include a snake bite kit
- Small game snares
- Water filter straw
- Katadyn Water Filter
- Water purification tablets
- Fence Tool
- Small flashlight
- Small roll of toilet paper and a small pack of baby wipes.
- Bar of soap
- Folding Toothbrush, dental floss (which has multiple uses), and toothpaste.
- Military style Poncho, plus liner
- Two (2) non-disposable water bottles
- Small notepad and pen. (My pen is aircraft aluminum and can double as a weapon.)
- Gold Bond medicated powder
- Cash in small denominations. (Definitely don’t carry anything bigger than twenties but preferably 5’s and ones.) Spread the cash around in different locations. $400.00 is my rule, but locale may require you to adjust.)
- If needed, have an extra pair of glasses.
- I have some type of discreet, non-lethal weapon.
- A small crank/solar/battery radio. If fried you can dispose of it.
- Catch-O-Matic Catfish hooks
- Stren Original 12lb fishing line (330yds)
- 100mph tape
- Parachute Cord
- Mess Kit
- Eating Utensils (Hobo Tool)
- Bug repellant (odorless)
- Additional Black Quick Dry shirt
- Light Jacket
- 3 pair underwear
- 3 pair socks
- Mole Skin
- Small Jar of Vaseline
- Book Where There Is No Doctor A Village Health Care Handbook by David Werner.
- Book of edible plants. (One with pictures would be very helpful.)
- Pint of Rum
- Several packs of cigarettes
In my car, I packed my mountain bike with an ArcEnCiel Water Resistant Bicycle Carrier Rack Pannier Bags and an ArcEnCiel Water Resistant Military Style Bicycle bag. (I took the advice of SurvivalBlog readers.) I loaded the panniers with easy to prepare rations. Everyone’s taste buds are different. However, small tins of fish steaks/sardines, tuna and chicken packets, protein bars, U.S. Coast Guard Life Boat rations, and MRE’s are a few examples of what you can bring. (Although these MREs are quite bulky, you can open the bags and break the contents down.)
Possible Long Gun
I have a Mossberg 500 pistol grip shotgun. I am normally not an advocate of carrying a long arm because of the unnecessary attention it’ll draw to you. But in this case, it definitely would be a much-needed addition. You have to keep in mind that in the beginning it will absolutely get you the type of attention you are seeking to avoid. If you can reasonable hide some type of long arm, then go for it. It can also be possible to “acquire” a long arm on the way. I recommend sticking with the common calibers– .223, .308, 30-06, 30-30, et cetera. It should reasonable to find these calibers, but don’t waste.
- Getting Home Long Distance in the Event of An EMP/Solar Flare- Part 1, by B.M.
- Getting Home Long Distance in the Event of An EMP/Solar Flare- Part 2, by B.M.
SurvivalBlog Writing Contest
This has been part three of a three part entry for Round 77 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The nearly $11,000 worth of prizes for this round include:
- A $3000 gift certificate towards a Sol-Ark Solar Generator from Veteran owned Portable Solar LLC. The only EMP Hardened Solar Generator System available to the public.
- A Gunsite Academy Three Day Course Certificate. This can be used for any one, two, or three day course (a $1,095 value),
- A course certificate from onPoint Tactical for the prize winner’s choice of three-day civilian courses, excluding those restricted for military or government teams. Three day onPoint courses normally cost $795,
- DRD Tactical is providing a 5.56 NATO QD Billet upper. These have hammer forged, chrome-lined barrels and a hard case, to go with your own AR lower. It will allow any standard AR-type rifle to have a quick change barrel. This can be assembled in less than one minute without the use of any tools. It also provides a compact carry capability in a hard case or in 3-day pack (an $1,100 value),
- Two cases of Mountain House freeze-dried assorted entrees in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources (a $350 value),
- A $250 gift certificate good for any product from Sunflower Ammo,
- Two cases of meals, Ready to Eat (MREs), courtesy of CampingSurvival.com (a $180 value), and
- American Gunsmithing Institute (AGI) is providing a $300 certificate good towards any of their DVD training courses.
- A Model 175 Series Solar Generator provided by Quantum Harvest LLC (a $439 value),
- A Glock form factor SIRT laser training pistol and a SIRT AR-15/M4 Laser Training Bolt, courtesy of Next Level Training, which have a combined retail value of $589,
- A gift certificate for any two or three-day class from Max Velocity Tactical (a $600 value),
- A transferable certificate for a two-day Ultimate Bug Out Course from Florida Firearms Training (a $400 value),
- A Three-Day Deluxe Emergency Kit from Emergency Essentials (a $190 value),
- A $200 gift certificate good towards any books published by PrepperPress.com,
- RepackBox is providing a $300 gift certificate to their site.
- A Royal Berkey water filter, courtesy of Directive 21 (a $275 value),
- A large handmade clothes drying rack, a washboard, and a Homesteading for Beginners DVD, all courtesy of The Homestead Store, with a combined value of $206,
- Expanded sets of both washable feminine pads and liners, donated by Naturally Cozy (a $185 retail value),
- Two Super Survival Pack seed collections, a $150 value, courtesy of Seed for Security, LLC,
- Mayflower Trading is donating a $200 gift certificate for homesteading appliances, and
- Two 1,000-foot spools of full mil-spec U.S.-made 750 paracord (in-stock colors only) from www.TOUGHGRID.com (a $240 value).
Round 77 ends on July 31st, so get busy writing and e-mail us your entry. Remember that there is a 1,500-word minimum, and that articles on practical “how to” skills for survival have an advantage in the judging.