Our family has a plan for bugging out, if it’s time to leave and things come to that. Actually, we have several plans. I am continuing to tell you my plans. Yesterday, I shared my choice of weapons for self defense and hunting.
My Choice of Blackhawk Products
Let me share a word on my choices here. As long time readers will realize, I’m a big fan of Blackhawk products. (Know that they do not pay me to promote their products. I just happen to think very highly of the quality of their gear, and that’s why I selected it.) My family all have similar setups, but they use different makes of gear to their liking.
The Bug Out Bag
As to the bug out bag (BOB), this is a pretty subjective thing. We all have different needs. I have at least one spare mag for whatever rifle I’ll carry and one spare mag for whatever handgun I might be carrying. Magazines get lost or damaged, so it just makes good sense to have at least one spare for your long gun and your handgun. I also have one hundred rounds of spare ammo in my bug out bag for the rifle and the handgun. I recently put a Ruger limited edition Black Hills Ammunition .22 pistol in the bug out bag, along with a couple hundred rounds of extra ammo and three mags all total for it. It’s ideal for taking small game for the stew pot.
In My Bug Out Bag
I have personal hygiene items in my bug out bag as well. You can stock your BOB with the items you need. I have three day’s worth of freeze-dried food, as well as a bottle of survival tabs that will keep me from starving for three weeks. They’re not perfect but better than going hungry. I have a change of clothing and several changes of socks and underwear. A small first-aid kit is in there as is a small survival book.
For many purposes, I like to keep no less than about 100 feet of 550 Paracord and a roll of Gorilla Tape. (No more duct tape for me; it isn’t well made like it used to be.) On the other hand, Gorilla Tape is outstanding for making repairs.
Shelter and Sleeping Bags
I keep two plastic tarps in my BOB, as well as a military-style poncho. Note that I said a poncho, not a rain suit. A poncho will keep your BOB covered when it rains. Even though I have treated my BOB with a water proofing spray, it still isn’t water proof. So, if it rains, the poncho will keep the BOB and the contents dry as well as myself. I don’t not have a tent in my BOB. The tarps will be used for making a shelter and as a ground cloth. We all have several different types of sleeping bags, too.
For Making Fire
One of the best things you can have in any BOB is several methods for making fire. My late friend, Chris Janowsky, who ran the World Survival Institute up in Alaska, always said that fire was “magic”, and it is. Chris was so good that he taught the U.S. Marine Corps winter survival instructors how to survive in winter conditions. That said a lot about how good Chris Janowsky was. It was also his advice on some of the contents to include in a BOB.
Vision and Vitamins
I also have a pair of binoculars, a pair of reading glasses, and a pair of eye glasses, even though I have a good supply of contact lenses in my BOB. Eye glasses are extra insurance. I keep a bottle with a year’s worth of multivitamins in my BOB, a year’s worth. They are inexpensive, at under ten bucks. Let’s face facts; odds are good that we won’t be eating healthy meals out in the boonies, so a vitamin supplement is really needed. I keep a good supply of “coin” tabs, which are tablets that you dip in water and they expand. You use it as toilet paper, as it takes up very little space in a BOB. I suffer from hypertension, so I keep a month’s supply of meds for this and need to increase this amount.
My BOB weighs 28 lbs. That’s all the weight I want to carry these days. Remember, ounces, lots of them, equal more pounds. In my senior years, I don’t want to carry any more weight than I have to.
One Thing That Will Go With Me
One thing that will go with me when I bug out, no matter which plan I might have to use, is a water proof winter parka. It doesn’t matter if it is the middle of summer, the parka goes with me. It is very light-weight, yet it will keep me warm down below zero. I also have a pair of tan water proof ankle high boots from Blackhawk Products. In Western Oregon, we get a lot of rain, and wet feet are not something you want to have, ever!
There are some other miscellaneous items in my BOB– small items that I believe will come in handy, just as you should add whatever miscellaneous items you think you should have in your BOB. Every summer, my family and I go through our BOB and update and change some of the items.
Our Youngest Daughter
Our youngest daughter will be 30 years old very shortly, and she served as a combat medic in the U.S. Army. She’s in great shape, and she and a friend from the army hiked across Spain a few years ago. So, they know how to pack up a backpack and how to plan and dress for various weather. The hike was 500 miles!
My youngest and I are a bit too much alike in many ways. Putting it lightly, we “bump heads” more often than we should on various topics. She believes that if I disagree with her on just about anything that I’m being critical and don’t love her. Far from it, like any good parent, I only want what is best for my children, in any event, I refrain from even making any suggestions to my youngest daughter about nearly anything. As I stated, she lives about 200 miles away. She has an SUV with 4-wheel drive and keeps her BOB in it. I also equipped her with an AR-15 and a full military A.L.I.C.E. web belt setup with plenty of spare ammo and mags for her AR. She has her own handguns. I just hope and pray that, when (not if) the SHTF, that she can jump in her SUV and head for home.
In another life, I was a paramedic and even worked as a physician’s assistant, long before there was such a position. I got a medical school education working for him, and I owned my own medical clinic at one time. However, with my youngest daughter’s combat medic training, she is more up to date on things and would surely be a blessing in a SHTF scenario. You see, we plan on providing emergency medical care in exchange for whatever we might need in barter.
In the “Wilderness” To Avoid Trouble
Needless to say, BOB and weapons/ammo will go with us, if we have to resort to Plan B and bug out with vehicles only. However, we can pack everything we need for survival for a long, long time, even years, in our vehicles. Once again, our plan is to avoid trouble if at all possible, and our game plan is to be in the “wilderness” to do this. I know the area around where we live fairly well. I’m always exploring back roads and logging roads for places to “hide” in, if it comes to that.
The Worst of Plans
The worst of the plans is, of course, Plan C, which is bugging out on foot with only the gear we can carry on our backs and around our waists. It’s not a good plan, but it’s better than no plan. I’m sure our readers have heard from their uneducated friends that when the SHTF, they plan on grabbing a gun and heading to the “woods” or to the “mountains”. That simply won’t work, if they’ve had no training in survival or military training, et cetera. They will die in short order, so it always amuses me to no end, when I hear or read about people who are going to grab a gun and head to the boonies. It is a ‘script for disaster in short order.
Family and Friends To Keep Watchful Eye
My family and I have been preppers all our lives. Even when I was a child, growing up in the 1950s and 1960s during the Cold War and the threat of a nuke war, I stored up a little bit of food and supplies. We have worked extra hard over the years to reach the point we are now at with our preps.
We planned on having enough food for a family of four for no less than three years, and we reached that goal and then some by quite a bit. As I stated, I hope and pray our youngest daughter can get here in the event of a serious SHTF scenario. She’d be a great asset. Still, I know I can’t stay awake 24/7 to keep a watchful eye on our small homestead. So, I have discussed this with some other close and very trusted friends, and they said they will make their way to our digs. Between us, we can protect things. The only problem is a few of these folks are now too far away from where we live and probably couldn’t get here.
One friend is a recently retired U.S. military guy, and a young guy at that, and he will head here. My best friend, unfortunately, lives in Colorado. He’d have a difficult time getting here, though he keeps his 5th wheel trailer fully loaded at all times and has spare gas, enough to get here if possible. He’s trying to get his house sold and head this way, but some unforeseen medical issues came up. Now they have to be dealt with before making such a move. He’s a Marine, as there’s no such thing as a “former” Marine; once a Marine, always a Marine. He would be a wonderful military asset to have here. We are so close that we consider ourselves brothers, literally!
Have Several Plans to Bug Out or Fight
I know my coverage of firearms is probably a disappointment to many of our readers, but it is more important to have a plan, even several plans, than it is to have an arsenal of firearms and a million rounds of ammo. If you want to fight, then join or start a militia and have at it. My game plan is to protect my family as best I can, and if that means bugging out, then that’s what we’ll do. However, if it comes to a fight, we’ll do what needs to be done.
My two daughters and wife are all expert marksmen. They are dead-on with their ARs, and you don’t want to even consider messing with them within handgun range. They “are” that good. Both of my daughters got their first guns when they were four years old. By what you see on the lame stream “news” media and in the eyes of liberals, it would be considered child abuse today to give firearms to four year olds.
There’s one more thing I wanted to touch on, and that is drinking water. You must have a way of filtering and purifying drinking water. If you don’t, you’ll die in short order. We all have water filters in our BOB, in our trailer, and in our house, and we have numerous methods for making bad water drinkable.
Another Plan That Wasn’t Good
One of my friends, not a close one, joined the Oregon National Guard when he was 37 years old with no prior military experience. He used to be a police officer but found out that being in the military is quite a bit different than being a police officer. I’ve been after him for years to start prepping. He took some baby steps. He has a BOB for himself, wife, and two school age daughters. His plan, if there was an EMP attack, was to hike 110 miles over the Cascade Mountains to a National Guard base and get in there with his family.
I told him that if he arrived there on foot, it would be a miracle itself, but if there was anyone there, he wouldn’t be allowed in and odds are there wouldn’t be much, if any, food. Then I asked him how he planned on carrying enough food for a 110-mile march through the mountains. He hadn’t thought of that. His plan had many flaws and was another plan that wasn’t good at all.
Friends Who Haven’t Prepped
My friend mentioned in the previous paragraph who hasn’t really prepped said he’d just come to our place. I told him that would be workable if he had enough food for his own family for at least a year and I know he doesn’t. I live more than 10 miles outside of the town he lives in. If there is an EMP, he would have to walk here with his family, and they sure couldn’t carry a year’s worth of food. I’m a staunch Christian, but my charity has limits. I can’t feed everyone who might show up here. I told my buddy that I’d give him a case of Ramen Noodle Soup and send them on their way. I’m not taking food out of the mouths of my family simply because someone else didn’t plan in advance for a SHTF scenario. Am I heartless? I don’t think so. He has the same opportunity I have to start building up a food supply, and he hasn’t!
Close Friends Who Can Contribute to Survival
I stated early on in this piece that I have invited a couple of close friends to come here, and if they didn’t have anything other than the clothes on their backs I would welcome them because of what they would bring and contribute to the survival atmosphere. It is possible for me to feed two more mouths without taking the food out of my family’s mouths. I can also get them geared up with everything they’d need to help in our overall survival, too.
The sad fact is, no one can feed everyone who comes to their door. You just can’t stock up enough food for everyone. It’s as simple as that.
I hope this article helps some of our readers who are looking for a direction to take in their preps and survival. It’s not a game! Take it seriously, and make several plans. If you don’t plan, you will fail, so have more than one plan. Not everyone can live out in the boonies like we do. We are blessed that we found this place, and it “only” took us 27 years or so to find just the right spot to wait out whatever may come our way.