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bug out vs bug in

Discussion in 'Survival/Preparedness Forum' started by FireForged, Jul 18, 2013.

  1. FireForged

    FireForged Millenium #3936 Millennium Member

    Dec 25, 1999
    Rebel South
    I read the article over at which relates to this subject and figured I would make a comment here.

    One issue that I have with the majority of articles that relate to bugging out is that they seem to write from the premise that people prepare to bug-out because they think its the better option. That's not it at all... People make preps to bug out for a situation where there is NO Option to stay home. I think the debate is ill served when they omit this dynamic. If you only plan to bug in, that's only one side of the coin. The plan is to be reasonable prepared for both.

    We could talk all day long about the reasons that would force you to bug out but I think that most reasonable people can imagine several things that would force you from the safety of your home. The discussion shouldn't be- bug out vs bug in.. it should be how best to prepare for both.
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2013
  2. UneasyRider

    UneasyRider C.D.B.

    Dec 1, 2005
    If I had a place to bug out to that was fully stocked like my home and ready to take me in and bolt the door then I would think it ok.

    Also if something really bad happened near my home. Perhaps a flood, fire, nuke, bio or chemical spill I would run for it without a place to go.

    In any other circumstance I have everything that I need right at home and could not see myself giving that up to be a hobo.

  3. bdcochran


    Sep 23, 2005
    Los Angeles
    If a person wants to believe that he will be bugging out and living off the land as a pioneer, hunter-gatherer or farmer and it is a viable option choice, he can believe it.

    I think that most people aren't prepared to bug out, whether it is a better option or the only option by necessity. It gets monotonous. Every year there are the tv reports on unprepared people during the hurricane season. In my area, there are routine big fires and the same stories about unprepared people.

    In a Lemming like reaction, people will simply follow the example of others when they perceive that shtf - without taking a moment to think about the options. Example, I was on a boat on the Mekong with my 7 year old and a companion, many many years ago. As the boat started sinking, people were jumping overboard. As my son prepared to jump, I grabbed his shirt and asked him if he could swim. "NO". Then I asked him why our companion and I were sitting and not moving. It then dawned on him - when enough people bailed, the boat wouldn't sink. What I am trying to communicate is that under stress not many people will weigh the options and will simply do what other people are doing.

    The stark reality is going to be that bugging out for the long term will have to become a necessity for a prepared person before that action is taken. Not very many places will be remote, stocked with game, and be fertile land.

    I am giving a link to a source for information on US population density and distribution from 1790 on.

    The population of the continental US has increased at least 14 fold from 1850 (when the boundaries were largely established) and 2010,

    Remember, the road that leads from your rural homestead to the big city also leads from the big city to your rural redoubt.

    Running to grandpa's farm 200 miles away for a few days is logical if you have a riot in your hometown, a hurricane is brewing or a trainwreck in your neighborhood. If the situation is more serious, one heck of a lot of other people are going to be headed to grandpa's farm at the same time you are.

    A little more rain - Until recent years, there haven't been paved roads or much by dirt roads in history. Yet, people have marched through swamps, forests, through snow passes, over mountains and across raging rivers. You aren't really "safe" anywhere. That's right. When I was in Afghanistan over 35 years ago, there was only ONE paved road in the whole country and it had been built by the Soviets.

    My age, health, girlfriend's lack of survival skills, population density in my area and other factors make bugging out only a choice of necessity.
  4. kirgi08

    kirgi08 Watcher. Silver Member

    Jun 4, 2007
    Acme proving grounds.
  5. Booker


    May 10, 2006
    I plan to Bug-In until I Bug-Out!

    With 2 sick parents at home, I'll stay as long as possible! I'll not be leaving them, Fate has made that decision for me!
  6. Dave514


    Jul 6, 2013
  7. Aceman


    Nov 30, 2008
    No doubt - deciding one or the other as a definitive action a-priori reveals a severe deficit in strategy and tactics regarding survival.

    One MUST be prepared for either.

    There are immense advantages to bugging in. Comfort, familiarity, support network, community, supplies. We can go on.

    The negatives of leaving are huge; Crowds, unknown, the masses of unprepared....

    But when one has to go, one has to go. Fire, Flood, Fallout, need for supplies or medical attention.

    There is nothing more foolish than leaving if you don't have to or are not seriously prepared to do so, and nothing more dangerous than staying if it really isn't safe.

    That said, if you are leaving:
    1. Have a place (or places) to go and a route to get there
    2. Have your gear ready
    3. If at all possible - leave BEFORE the masses if you can, or wait until the dust clears if possible.
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2013
  8. kirgi08

    kirgi08 Watcher. Silver Member

    Jun 4, 2007
    Acme proving grounds.
    The upside is being able ta choose.We have the luxury.'08.
  9. Stupid


    Oct 26, 2005
    Who's the companion? :cool:
  10. Stupid


    Oct 26, 2005
    As bdcochran eloquently put, bugging out and hoping to live off remote land is really hard for most people. In reality, most would die within a few weeks. I have also pointed this out in multiple threads. The only reason most of us are alive today is because of modern medicine. Without it, most of us wouldn't be able to live much longer. When you are in a remote area, how would you deal with even a simple scratch without antibiotics? It's cool for a boy scout or camping trip as you know, you have the whole nation's medical facility behind you just one phone call away should you really need it. When you are truly on your own, that's a totally different story.

    Bugging out and living off remote land is not even in my prep agenda because it's just more suicidal than useful.

    Personally, if I have to bug out, it would be going, via a safe passage, to another safe city or a different country where I have asset available for me to live.
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2013
  11. Stupid


    Oct 26, 2005
    Now bugging in has another set of problems: security. In a chaos like without rule of law, it is almost impossible to maintain security when bugging in. I have run this scenario many times and only come to one solution: if bugging out to another country is not an option, then you have to work with your neighbors to establish a community security force or a militia.

    In a scenario when the rule of law is out of the window, that's pretty much the only way to survive.
  12. Stupid


    Oct 26, 2005
    I highly suggest anybody interested in this subject to watch a movie called 1942. It's a Chinese movie but has English subtitle. It talks about how a rich family survived in a huge famine disaster. Firstly, they decided to bug in as they had plenty of food; however, a huge group of hungry peasants swarmed their home - they had a huge home. Their few guns and "security force" mostly composed of family members were powerless in the face of the hungry people. Then they decided to bug out. It was a long road filled with starvation and death.

    Watch and see how many survived.

    I know it's a movie but it was so realistic.
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2013
  13. TangoFoxtrot

    TangoFoxtrot OIF 04-05

    Sep 10, 2008
    Nowhereville, USA
    Im prepared to do both pending the emergency. I would prefer to bug in.. but realize sometimes you need to be ready to move out quickly
  14. mac66

    mac66 Huge Member Millennium Member

    Oct 28, 1999
    Blue Planet
    Bugging out is just like any other prep. If you have a plan and are prepared it is viable option. If you think you are just going to jump in the car with no place to go, thinking you are going to live off the land then you are probably going to fail.

    The best option for bugging out is a location that you have chosen, planned and prepared. Ideally, it is a small rural community where you have established yourself and are known by the locals. It is always good to have some connection to the area. Maybe you grew up there or still have family there. Maybe it is a place your family has vacationed for several generations. Maybe you know the local builder, banker, handyman, well digger, septic tank guy because they built your cottage/cabin etc. Maybe you have a close connection with local neighbors etc. Maybe you attend the local church when you are in town.

    Of course the more independent and self reliant you are the less likely the locals will throw you out. If you have a particular skill they might need or use, the better chance of acceptance into the community as well.

    The point is, you may never have to bug out, but it you do you better be planning, prepping and paving the way just in case. Without a plan or a place to go you aren't bugging out, you are becoming an refugee and a victim.
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2013
  15. Bravo 1

    Bravo 1 Serious Infidel CLM

    Sep 21, 2005
    Eventually, all survivors will have to "bug out" or just move on due to various reasons.

    Anybody who thinks they can bug in forever is probably not in touch with reality.

    True survivors will band together after the dust settles with humanity and either learn the requisite skills or die.

    At that point, they will bug in until they have to move again due to game movement or disease or weather or starvation or whatever.

    Many are scared to think about bugging out and attack it's merit, therefore justifying the bug in approach.

    Hopefully, we never find out. But I believe the study of history, mankind,nature and common sense will tell you that eventually you will bug out and probably more than once before you perish.
  16. Stupid


    Oct 26, 2005
    Bug out is fine. I am not against it. I just want to point out some of the logistic problems.

    How do you plan to manage security on the road? You can't assume there are no bandits, gang members or mobs, can you? You and your family members, unless you have a platoon size family and all are well trained, are not enough to provide security in a time without the rule of law.

    How do you manage to transfer and protect your supplies? In time of need, how do you re-supply? As self-sufficient as the Louis and Clark team, they would be dead before long had none of the Indian Nations helped them. They were prolific hunters and survivalists. You may have better firearms but do you have enough resource and means to transfer, protect and resupply?

    Health care:
    What do you do when someone get sick or get hurt? All kinds of things can happen on the road. Without proper medical care, lots of people would die.

    I am not against bug out. If you do bug out, I would suggest to go with a well organized group with adequate supply and well planned out routes and resupply points where you can replenish your group with shelter, food, water, weapon, ammo and medical care at least.
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2013
  17. mac66

    mac66 Huge Member Millennium Member

    Oct 28, 1999
    Blue Planet
    Realistically a bug out is likely to be only a couple hundred miles at most. Most emergencies are going to be local or regional.

    On the other hand if the Yellowstone caldera goes up, or the New Madrid fault opens up, you are likely to see masses of people evacuating thousands of miles.

    In any case having a place to run to and alternative routes planned out is being properly prepared.
  18. inzone


    Aug 20, 2009
    Haill no! aint no way in hell I'm haulin all those heavy pallets of ammo anywhere! Unless its meat eating aliens, my kin and extended kin gather at my place and we dig in and we go the Stalingrad option! they stopped the Germans cold at Stalingrad.... they can't burn us out (lots of water!), they cant starve us out..lots of beans and rice and Crisco and canned ghee, etc...and we can thro a BEACOUP amount of led downrange all the live long day..MOLON LABE.....
  19. drt4life


    Jun 18, 2013
    The Animals will come out of hiding quick, whether you bug in or out.....majority will succumb to whatever Government at time says to do....LE will either be non-existent or brutal....Neighbors/families will become enemies.....people will slowly turn on each other to survive....only a handful can survive in the wild....maybe 1 in a 100k has the necessary skills and mindset. Having 2 or 3 locations with food and gear, if only the basics may be a lifesaver if you have to leave home...your mind will be best tool, you will have to do things you say you would not...