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Example of a realistic bug-out scenario?

Discussion in 'Survival/Preparedness Forum' started by Stupid, May 15, 2013.

  1. Cali-Glock

    Cali-Glock Mountain Man

    Feb 11, 2002
    California Sierra Mnts
    +1 I buged out for the 1990 Painted Cave (Santa Barbara) fire. It was a wild experience. The fire bisected Goleta and Santa Barbara; you could not get from one place to the other.

    We went to a friend's house and then I ran to the grocery store - all bottle water and many other supplies had been sold out in a matter of hours. Quite a learning experience.
  2. FerFAL


    May 31, 2007
    Lets see,
    Fire, your house burning down, happens all the time adn if you're even there you have only seconds before it burns down on you.
    Natural disasters such as floods, earthquakes, also hurricane, tornado, tsunami. Wildfires. Any of these could force you to evacuate.
    Industrial disasters, chemical spills.
    Sociopolitical and economic degradation. A neighborhood, state or entire country becoming too dangerous or too poor for you to stay in it.
    Politicial, idiological, ethnic and religious persecution.
    War, both foreign invasion or civil war.

    Bugging out isnt a choice as an alternative to bugging out. Bugging out is what you do when staying isnt an option any more.

  3. Stupid


    Oct 26, 2005
    All of these examples can be taken care with $5000 cash on hand, no?
  4. mac66

    mac66 Huge Member Millennium Member

    Oct 28, 1999
    Blue Planet
  5. bmoore


    Jan 15, 2006
    Under a regime.
    Wildfires and earthquakes for me. Either way I will be at work or being mandatory called back.
  6. Aceman


    Nov 30, 2008
    Heads up time is lways a factor;

    Earthquake is zero
    Fire could be none to considerable
    Hurricane is days
  7. pugman


    May 16, 2003
    About the only two I can think of.

    As much as I hate the state of Wisconsin there are some advantages...

    Hurricanes in the last ten years....0
    Earthquakes....I haven't heard of any
    Wildfires in the last ten years....0
    Nuclear Plants....only active one is 150 miles east and the primary winds blow east

    However, I live on the 94EW corridor and our McDonalds is infamous as a stopping point for travelers. Right off the interstate, easy on/off and a midway point from Milwaukee/Madison. I could see folks getting stuck here and this town is clueless on how to maintain order if it happened.
    Last edited: May 17, 2013
  8. Mother in law visits.:outtahere:
  9. thetoastmaster

    thetoastmaster NOT a sheepdog!

    That's a good point. To me, an INCH situation is not a bug-out. That is, I separate them. If I am never coming home I will need a lot more stuff than I can fit in a BOB or three-day bag. A bug-out means that I am coming home. It's temporary. Money may or may not be of value. In a post-Katrina situation the price of goods and services may greatly exceed my cash on hand. I may have to drive further, or in a different direction, to get what my family needs.

    In an INCH scenario, such as the more drastic listed above, well, I'll really have to make sure I have a copy of my insurance policies...
  10. JAS104

    JAS104 NRA Life Member

    Apr 2, 2012
  11. FerFAL


    May 31, 2007
    It depends. In some cases its just a matter of leaving for a few days and staying at family or friends. If your house burned down and you either dont have insurnace, that particular disaster isnt covered or you did something that voided your contract, then you're looking at spending a LOT of money to get back on your feet. So it could be a BO scenario where you spend nothing, or it culd be one that costs you hundreds of thousands to recover from.
    You evcuate due to storm/flood warnings. The guy that has a pace to stay may spend little or nothing, the guy that has to find a hotel to stay in may end up spending hundreds of dollars. Then again there may be no hotel rooms left due to everyone doing the same thing. This means a) PAying for a more expensive room b) having to travel further way, more gas, more traveling.
    Depending on the event you may not now how long it will be before you come back. If you are leaving due to escalating civil unrest and that evolves into a full blown socioeconomic collapse of the country you may chose to never come back. Same for ethnic or religious persecution.
    Bugging Out Aborad is a bit harder on your pocket. 5000 bucks is barely covering a family's plane ticket expenses, and that's if you leave i tiem, beofre you have to start bribing your way out of it. During the Bosnia war, you were looking at 10.000 USD per person to buy your way out of sieged Sarajevo, surrounded by Serbian forces.
    Getting settled abroad also costs money, adding another 30.000 USD or so.

    Sometimes you can't tell for sure if you're coming back or not. In some cases you have a better idea, but even with natural disasters you may not have a home left to come back to!
    I've been writing a lot about this topic lately and I'm not much of a believer of having ten thousand diferent bags, like BOB, INCH, GHB and TSBTGMBFTG. "The survival bag to get me back from the gym". :upeyes: Its as if marketing has taken over survivalism and there's more bug out bags, or survival emergency bags than there is purse or shoe designers. We just have BOB, and a small traveling bag with our passports, cash stash and other documents, that always goes along with it.
    Why have it in a sepratate (and much smaller docuement bag)? Becuase if the house is burning down or similar imminent threat and I dont have time or I cant carry a BOB with me, becasue theres no time, becuase I'm wounded or I have to help or carry a family member, then that's the bag I'm trying to get out of the house if at all possible.
    When I left my home knowing fully well I was never coming back, what I needed the most, what we couldnt have done without was in my jacket's pocket: Plane tickets, cash & credit cards, USB drive in my keychain with essential data and our passports. Anything else could be improvised or bought back. Everything else, the suitcases with clothings, our wedding photo album, some of the gear I didnt sell or left in caches, we could have done without any of those if needed.
    Almost two years later I dont even remember some of the stuff we left behind with so much pain, wisihng we could have taken it with us.
    People get attacked to stuff too much. I know I like gear as much as the next guy, but I know I can walk away from it in a second without looking back.
    Also, if something is forcing you to leave, maybe even leave for good, then you probably dont have much time to pack a trailer full of stuff, or if you're evacuating abroad you cant take i with you anyway.
  12. Stupid


    Oct 26, 2005
    The whole point of my question is that some of us focus so much what to put in a bag but in reality, none would be used. It is not realistic for us to take a bag of goods and walk out on foot for a few days - we won't last a few days.

    I would suggest focus on getting some critical cash on hand, $5K on hand and $20K in the bank, so that you can survive after a disaster.
    Last edited: May 18, 2013
  13. thetoastmaster

    thetoastmaster NOT a sheepdog!

    There are quite a few ideas and concepts mixed up in there. I am going to attempt to tease out the ideas and address them individually.

    I generally agree with your additional reasons for and circumstances surrounding leaving your home. There are a thousand scenarios ranging from the mundane to the truly bizarre. They happen every day. Yes, some people are more prepared than others. Most leave with nothing but the clothes they're wearing and experience difficulty reassembling their lives with missing insurance policies, credit card and mortgage documents, birth certificates, etc. Having those items packed, with duplicates in secure locations is a good idea.

    Preparing is not about the accumulation of gear, as you alluded in multiple places. It is about planning and conducting thought experiments. Where will you go? What will you do? Are you ready to leave everything behind? Can you readily recover? What are your assets? What are your liabilities? Your notion of having cash to evacuate abroad is an interesting notion. I don't know how germane it is to this particular exchange; but I appreciate your sharing it. Cash on hand is always a vital addition to any preparedness scenario; but while I understand your point, I don't think fleeing from the United States is a viable option right now. I mean, if the situation is so bad here we have to flee, how much worse will it be abroad? Allow me an indulgence:

    There will be no place to flee if the US falls. Yes, have cash to get that hotel room, or medical intervention, or to bribe a crooked official. I will not contest those points, even on the amount. The more you have, the better off you will be.

    I think we have a misunderstanding. I never specifically wrote of having different bags for what amounts to a more severe version of the same scenario, staying for a few days to never coming home, leaving on foot to leaving in a vehicle, etc. My family and I subscribe to a layered approach to this, similar to the US military's It's based upon "lines" of preparations and equipment. My first line might just be my everyday items, what I have in my pockets at any given moment. If there is an emergency without notice I can grab a loaded LBE and body armor. If there is another moment I can add a loaded three-day-sized bag. After that, there are loaded wheeled boxes with more supplies, ready to load in the car. Do you see where I am taking this? The more time I have, and the more time I expect to be gone, the more gear I can take with me. I have some additional supplies prepositioned at another location. Admittedly, my first plan is to stay close, and hunker down with nearby family.

    I stand by my observation that in most scenarios I will be returning home. I modify my point to bring it somewhat in harmony with yours, that in some scenarios an evacuation will be permanent, with either no opportunity to return, or that your remaining gear could be lost, stolen, or destroyed in the disaster that necessitated leaving. I will further modify my point to cover scenarios that require your bug out gear. If all I am taking is my line one and line two gear, I am planning on coming home.

    This has become a thought provoking exchange.
  14. FerFAL


    May 31, 2007
    Oh, I'm not saying fleeing USA is a good idea by any means, at least not right now. In fact, its one of the best places to be in, in my opinion.
    Having said that, we're not in the same boat regarding "if USA falls there's no place left to go to" approach.
    I've came across that line of thought many times, but its one that doesnt accept the fact that always, when a country or empire or even region has fallen from grace there's always another region that is better off. Not wanting to leave becuase of patriotism, that I understand. But if there's a large scale disaster ( civil war, large scale terrorist attack, nuke, meteor impoact, Hilary 2016) not wanting to leave becuase it cant possibly be better offelsewhere, that's denial to me.
    Again, I'd life in USA myslef right now if I could, but at the same time I know fully well that its important to have BO plans, both locally and out of the country if possible in case it ever comes to that.
  15. Stupid


    Oct 26, 2005
    I second to that. The whole mentality of "If US is in turmoil, the rest of the world would be worse" is very narrow sighted. Empires rise and fail. Even in the height of WWI and WWII, there are plenty places in the world as if there were nothing going on. US is just a tiny portion of the world, important and crucial but not the only paradise.

    Having another footing in another country has a huge advantage over all the goodie bags.

    For any survival situation, I would suggest to focus on getting some cash on hand in the short term, and then focus on getting another footing in a different country.

    You aren't going to walk out with your bug out bag with your family and come back alive. For a short camping trip, sure but not any real disaster situation. Think Lewis and Clark. Without the Indian Nations, they would be dead as a rock. What makes you think you can do better?
    Last edited: May 18, 2013
  16. wingryder


    Oct 9, 2012
    28.420, -81.171
    Sure, there will be countries better off than the US. But will they be willing to accept the hundreds of thousands of refugees trying to get in? The US turned away a ship loaded with Jewish refugees during WWII, and we realize the persecution they were enduring! Immigration during a stressful global scenario may not be as easy as buying your way into sweden.
  17. kirgi08

    kirgi08 Watcher. Silver Member

    Jun 4, 2007
    Acme proving grounds.
    Glad your back around FF.Respects.'08.
  18. FerFAL


    May 31, 2007
    But many Jews did succesfully get to emigrate to USA, as well as other countries around the globe.
    Two key points here. Timing and resources.
    Thousands of Jews left before it got bad. Thousands of others said it wont get that bad, stayed and paid for that, sometimes with their lives. Timing is everything.
    Then there's resources. If you had a nice amount of money or gold your chances of being welcomed were greater. Again, many Jews had enough wealth to make it easier to settle abroad.
    The more options you have, the better. Maybe one country is harder to get into, so that is way having other options is important. If you have EU citizenship you can get into any country of the EU without problem. I'm Argentine as well, so that opens up the Mercosur for me and my family, most of South America we can get into just like a regular citizen.
    There's thousands of Americans that could claim Iirsh citizenship, (if you have an Irish grandparent you can do it) that alone gets you a EU passport.
    This is a different creature from short or medium term BO based on a limited local event, but none the less its something that could be invaluble if things get REALLY bad.
  19. kirgi08

    kirgi08 Watcher. Silver Member

    Jun 4, 2007
    Acme proving grounds.
    Folk,he has the btdt t-shirt.'08.
  20. bdcochran


    Sep 23, 2005
    Los Angeles
    "You aren't going to walk out with your bug out bag with your family and come back alive. Think Lewis and Clark. Without the Indian Nations, they would be dead. What makes you think you can do better?"

    For most people, the thinking is ...

    1. if Rambo can do it in the movies, I can too;
    2. if I served in Vietnam or Iraq 10 years ago and am out of shape, I can get back into shape within 2 days when shtf;
    3. if a few people did it in history, I will be able to do the same.

    There is a mountain range running down the center of the City of Los Angeles. The base on the north side is an east west street named VEntura Boulevard. The base on the south side is Sunset Boulevard. The distance is about 10 miles. There are no restaurants, fast food stands, gasoline stations, strip malls, rest stops, drinking fountains between the two streets in the mountains.

    If you are not permitted in the scenario to walk on the three streets and the freeway connecting the two and you posit that there is no brush fire, then the question is how many people age 1 to 95 can be dumped out on Sunset Boulevard and make it on their own (heck you can even assume a three day pack) and make it to Ventura Boulevard.

    The answer is probably that out of 100 who try, the survivors can be counted on two hands or fewer. Oh, yeah, and I will let you assume that when they arrive at Ventura Blvd, they can go to the nearest restaurant.

    Sure, I saw a camel caravan in Turkey on the Mediterranean Coast, caravans in Afghanistan in the 1970s and probably one of the last ones in remote Western China. Those people lived the life, had the skills, knew where the water might be, had the food sources in mind.

    The person who posted that you provide for emergency, temporary survival in the US and then a foothold elsewhere like in a foreign country has more insight than the guy who thinks his bugout with an unskilled spouse and minor children is going to last more than a couple of days.