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Sheltering in Place – There are many reasons one would have to stay where they are at, family, finances, job, time, etc.  If you have to stay where you’re at, there are things you can do to increase your odds at surviving at your location, like fortifying your home.  The bottom line here is making your home as difficult as possible to break into, in other words, a fort.

Inside your home – Like I’ve said before, there is always safety and strength in numbers.  Having like minded family and/or close friends sheltering with you will greatly increase your odd in surviving, providing you have enough food, water and supplies for everyone for an extended period.   Also, each person old enough will have their own pistol and rifle or pistol and shotgun with at least 1000 rounds minimum for each gun to defend your family and the shelter from gangs and looters.  The photo below was taken after Katrina, neighborhood watch.

Ballisticly, a brick or stone house will be much better than a standard wood and sheetrock home.  In this case, it would be a great idea to have a few hundred sandbags full of gravel & sand to fortify the inside just in case you get caught in a shootout.

Doors – Having an extra heavy duty security door over each external door to your home will greatly deter looters.  Every external door should be solid oak or a steel or metal clad door secured with heavy duty four in screws in the hinges.  For the door knob latch, it should also be secured with four in screws along with the latch for the heave duty dead bolt.  There should be at least a 160 degree minimum angle peep hole.  Having extra door latches, security chains and door blocks is just a plus.

Garage Doors – Most door slide bars have a hole in them for a pad lock so keep one handy.  It’s also a good idea to have some heavy duty chain to put in and secure the door roller track to keep the door from being raised.

Windows – Unless you have heavy-duty burglar bars over your windows, in your barn, garage, store room, etc. you should have several sheet of ¾” plywood, enough to cover every window on your house.  These sheets will be mounted with at least 3” to 4” screws, never use nails.  Have a good cordless drill hand and plenty of screws to secure the plywood.  Put a screw every three to four inches around the edge.  You will also want to put a ½” drill hole to be able to look out.  Just be sure to keep it covered from the inside so no light escapes.

Gates – Have heavy duty chain links available to secure all personal and vehicle gates coming into your property.

Property line / Fencing – If someone can drive a vehicle across your lawn into your house, you’re in trouble.  To protect your home, you will need some type of heavy-duty fencing or barricades all around your home for vehicle intrusion protection.  I have covered this before in a previous article.

Bugging Out – Having a survival retreat or a safer place to go to and survive is so crucial for surviving.  And knowing when to leave BEFORE all hell breaks loose rather than WHEN will greatly increase your odds of getting there safely.  And having at least 90% of your supplies at your survival retreat will also help greatly before bugging out.

Before bugging out, you should PRACTICE loading all your remaining supplies (your 10%) in your bug-out vehicle to make sure you have enough room for your family and supplies.  If it does not all fit, take your excess to your retreat well before it is to late.  When the time comes to bug-out, you know everything will fit.  Once loaded, SECURE YOUR HOME.  Make sure all your utilities are turned off and locked so no one can turn them on again.  Make sure all doors, windows and gates are locked and secured.  Depending on the type of disaster, one day there might be a chance for you to return home.  Your home should look like the photo.

The harder you make it to break into, the better chance there will be something left if you return.  If you don’t secure your home, it might look like this one.

Transportation – A good heavy-duty pickup or SUV with 4WD is one of the best all around bug-out vehicles to have.  However, whatever vehicle you do have you want to make sure is always stays in very good running condition.  The last thing you need is your vehicle breaking down during your bug-out, then you’ll really be up sh*t creek unless you’re running in a convoy.  The best colors for a bug-out vehicle would be earth tone colors that would be difficult to see at a distance.  Blacks, dark greens, browns and tans will be your best bet.  If your bug-out vehicle is an RV, they stick out like a sore thumb and can be easily targets during a bug-out.  You will want to camouflage them as best as possible.

Bugout route – You will need at a bare minimum of at least three escape routes from your location to your survival retreat.  Again having plans A, B, & C at a minimum will only increase your survivability.  When the time comes to leave, bugging out in a group in a convoy will also increase your survivability.  But again, knowing when to leave BEFORE all hell breaks loose rather than WHEN will greatly increase your chances.  You defiantly do not want to be stuck in traffic during a bug-out.

Next article:  Hunker in a Bunker

Recommended reading:

Dare to Prepare by Holly Deyo is one of the top three preparedness books on the market.

One Second After by William R. Forstchen is an excellent novel on what will happen after an EMP attack.

Patriots – A Novel of Survival in the Coming Collapse by James Wesley, Rawles is another excellent novel of what will happen after an economic collapse.

How to Survive the End of the World As We Know It by James Wesley, Rawles is another excellent reference book on preparedness.

Recommended viewing:

After Armageddon is a History Channel 90 minute documentary about a worse case scenario disaster situation that can be watched on You Tube.

3 Responses to “Sheltering in Place vs. Bugging Out”

  1. mamajac

    I am a student at the present time of preparedness and still learning and researching information. I live in the country and am familar with survival skills, food storage and having a preparedness stash. The one thing I have not worked on was an escape route. I guess I never thought much about it because I figured home would be the safest place. But I think I will consider the fact that I may need an alternate choice. Thanks for the push in that direction.

  2. Ken

    I live near where I-95 and I-20 meet and the only thing I’ve really thought about is avoiding them like the plague. That’s the default route for all the sheeple. My bugout place is a mountain cabin around the Smoky Mountain Nat’l Forest area, so avoiding Charlotte is gonna be an issue. It’s probably a good idea for all of us to sit down and spend a couple of hours planning at least 3 or 4 routes while keeping in mind the direction traffic will be flowing in a panic. Print out or buy a good physical paper map and keep it in the glove box. Don’t forget to plan for some seemingly little things like a sturdy satchel to put everyone’s medicines, loose jewelry or whatnot in or buying a couple of those LED flashlights that don’t need batteries to function. You’ve probably got 2 weeks of food at least in your pantry, if not then buy canned food on sale can get you there for under $100 for a family of four. Long-term, talk to the folks here I guess about food to keep at the bugout place and augment with whatever is left in the pantry. Don’t forget the long-term water supplies even if it’s just a couple of filtered water pitchers for the moment. I’m just trying to plan for the worst on my limited budget and hope hope for the best. It’s all anyone can do.


  1.  Sheltering in Place vs. Bugging Out