I read an article over the weekend that talked about arriving at your bug-out location/retreat/wherever you plan to go when SHTF. This one in particular referenced a cabin in the woods, so naturally I paid attention.
First, a two- or three-hour drive like ours could easily turn into twice that, or more. While we’re used to stopping for a bathroom break or to grab a Pepsi, that could be dangerous or impossible when SHTF. A few hours would be no big deal, but twice that? You need a plan.
Of course, you should already have a few additional routes to your BOL, and you should be familiar with them. I’d also suggest a system of combining a couple routes, just in case you’re halfway there and that second-choice road becomes unavailable for some reason.
See, you aren’t going to be the only vehicle on the road. Or the path. It’s not a matter of going with the flow of traffic or switching to the outer road of the highway to avoid an accident—it’s a matter of a whole lot of panicky people trying to leave in a hurry. A big hurry. Most with no plan or prepping at all.
So let’s say you head out of town around noon, expecting to arrive around 3:00; but you have to take side roads, back roads, gravel. Or worse. You actually get to your BOL after dark.
If you’re off the beaten path, you should be okay; if you’re not, you might find nothing or you might find squatters.
This is why you don’t talk about your preps, and especially your location. Sometimes, even if you don’t, someone may have gotten there before you.
Be cautious. This isn’t a weekend trip.
Hopefully you’re carrying and all your weapons and ammo aren’t stored or cached at your BOL. They could be missing, but certainly would be hard to find in the dark. Same thing with your supplies.
And let’s not forget the comforts of home.
You hear a lot about bug-out bags, and most of these are planned to be carried. By you. Of course, you also know about emergency kits for your vehicle.
But what about a more specific bug-out kit designed for your vehicle?
In a car emergency kit, you’d have flares, a blanket, water, snacks. At minimum. You might also conceal-carry or have a weapon in the glove box. And of course, you have a bug-out bag standing ready by the door.
With a delay or poor visibility conditions upon arrival at your BOL, you might be looking for a bit more:
Extra water or beverages
Extra snacks—or MREs on arrival
Card or board game
Extra blankets and travel pillows
I keep a tote with the larger items, ready to go if needed, as well as a survival bag with the smaller items already in my truck. Don’t discount those “comforts” like toilet paper and coffee and a simple hot meal.
If I got delayed or stuck, I’d be pretty much set.
And yeah, a good map with ALL the roads is a necessity. Take it out of your vehicle for plotting routes, and put it BACK IN, IMMEDIATELY.
Don’t rely just on your memory—you’ll be at some level of panic too, regardless of your prepping.