When the SHTF – what do I do? Part 7

Location – if I have to leave where can I possibly go and if I stay what can I expect?

solar-stormThese are very touchy subjects and I will not mince words or be politically correct when I have to say what I have to say.

When it comes to your survival it will depends on three factors: your location, the event and your preparedness.

Staying where you are and riding out events is not going to be topic specific as I do not wish to write a book on each subject which I probably could.

If I stay what can I expect to happen?

Let’s deal with these events in a worst to best sequence.

Coronal Mass Ejections (CME) or a gigantic burst of solar energy from the sun hitting the earth’s surface will in some instances expose humans to massive amounts of cosmic rays which in high doses are extremely lethal. Those people at higher altitudes and in aircraft will receive the most radiation.

OK great what could happen besides exposure to cosmic rays?

The satellites in space could be destroyed and the electrical grid disrupted or destroyed.

Typical protection for your home when advanced warning of a massive CME is to make sure your house electrical system is grounded in one or two places by driving a copper stake created out of a 1-1/2” piece of hammered flat copper tubing 3 feet long into the ground connected to a negative connection in your homes power source.

For protecting your appliances and electronics a make shift Faraday cage created out of making a cover out of heavy aluminum foil to shield them from the effective Electro Magnetic Pulse (EMP) that is likely to happen during a solar storm.

OK what about protecting myself?

If you have time to prepare make plans to stay inside with adequate food, water and sanitation preparedness in case the power is lost and toilets and water cease to function.

Another protection you can add to your attics insulation is an aluminum foil backed insulation to the under roof and deck which will provide moderate deflection during low level cosmic rays.

nukeThermo Nuclear Attack

Staying put in case of nuclear attack?

If you are under attack from an enemy’s nuclear arsenal you don’t want to be caught out in the open where exposure from radiation, blast, flying debris or blindness caused by nuclear flash can occur.

A global nuclear arsenal is a frightening thing with over 15,000 nuclear warheads and missiles armed and ready to rain global destruction from which there is no turning back and in which two billion with be killed at the outset and another billion from radiation poisoning.

Where is totally safe?

Truthfully nowhere is totally safe but areas away from cities, military installations, regular and nuclear power plants, shipping ports, major rail and transit hubs and refinery locations.

I have spent hundreds of hours researching, reading, looking at maps and scouring over safe areas in America and have found a few that may offer some margin of safety but shifting wind patterns over a day or a week may significantly vary that prediction.

Wilderness and heavily wooded areas more than 50 miles from any of the areas I mentioned provide a margin of safety such as expansive national forest areas and deserts. 

Survival areas that present no direct nuclear hits and possible lower radiation zones are Central Idaho, south central Florida, central & NE Nevada, northern New Hampshire and NW Wyoming.

What about the rest – of course some pockets of humanity will survive but sickness from radiation and fallout, contaminated foods, infected water sources and inhuman acts but for most areas in America its glow in the dark for many years.

Is such a horrific event even worth surviving?

To me I’d rather be alive regardless of the situation unless I’m incinerated in a flash and nothing I could have done would possibly matter anyway.

Surviving an Invasion by Foreign Troops

Yeah your thinking that could never happen?

Ever see movie Red Dawn?

Don’t be naïve it certainly can happen and yet may.

Who would be brave enough to dare invade America – want the biggest hit list – Russia, Korea, China and their allies?

America is not well liked around the globe and few countries would come to our aid because if we are being invaded I guarantee they too will have their hands full too.

No I’m not blowing smoke up your skirt. This is a reality based discussion.

What will and could happen?

I am not a military tactician but infiltration of enemy combatants from Canada and Mexico as illegal’s crossing our borders (12,000,000 are here already maybe as many as ½ of 1 percent or 12,000 could be enemy combatants with a nefarious plan), coastal and cross borders invasions (Canada and Mexico), air drop of elite troops on major metropolitan targets to disrupt power, transportation and public services. There could be many more devious ways I cannot even conceive of but rest assured if it can be done it very well may be the Big Plan.

Specially trained cadre like our Navy Seals, Green Berets and Army Rangers will infiltrate major metropolitan networks disabling power, water and sanitation, blow up major bridges and rail centers disabling transportation of food, fuel and supplies.

What will this cause?

Civilian panic will then ensue. The normal lifestyle will cease immediately without chances of preparation.

Groceries stores will be bare in hours, gas stations that are functioning drained of all fuel; roads clogged with people trying to escape to anywhere because they are scared and were not caught in the network of metropolitan closures unable to get out.

What about our police and military?

Our country will immediately undergo marshal law, civil freedoms will cease, travel restricted, curfews invoked and rationing to essential personnel only.

Next house to house confiscation of arms, ammo and food; if they control water, food, fuel, exit routes they effectively control you.

Next mass movement of non-essential personnel to relocation centers (concentration camps). The mentally ill, infirm and old will likely be terminated and the others used as slave labor. Those causing resistance will be shot no resistance exists if the perpetrators are no longer around.

Many people already unable to get medical treatment and medications will perish over a short period of time.

Our military will become a police force and used to suppress enemy movements and them gaining territory with horrific battles being fought.

Why wouldn’t the enemy just nuke us into the Stone Age?

Because they are invading to get our national resources food, water, oil and natural gas. These are worth the risk to many big nations like China and Russia who have depleting resources and enormous populations.

Where could I go to escape?

Interesting question; escaping to the central USA or mountain areas away from population centers and coastlines, military bases and major highway routes.

Most military bases may be struck with a limited low yield nuclear warhead to disable a reprisal.

Mountain areas in the Appalachian Range, Great Smokey Mountains, Blue Ridge, Black Hills, Grand Teton and others with exception of Rocky mountains which would be hard to survive in due to climatic conditions being so harsh 6-months of the year.

Mountain ranges have gorges and valleys, water resources and abundant game and are great places to hide and survive if you are prepared and can get there.

Military operations are not likely to be hunting individuals like you so you’ll be safe as long as you remain low key and as out of sight as possible.

Not everyone will survive this kind of foray either; those with no weapons, no wilderness skills, scarce or no food sources lasting more than a few days.

Going into the mountains requires a practical and doable plan of action. That plan has to be multi-faceted to include transportation, water, food, medical supplies, shelter, personal protection and long range survival.

Let’s deal with the basics of wilderness survival, their issues you will be required to cope with. 


Transportation – This isn’t just about getting to your location but also movement while in the mountains.

A minivan that can be converted into a passable camper that can haul all your short-term and long-term food, water, gear and necessities.

Let’s face it besides unkempt and logging roads and mountain paths it will be nearly impossible to take even a four wheel drive vehicle through the woods. Besides problems of fuel consumption being non-replaceable your visual foot prints such as fresh tracks left by your tires such as indentations in soft ground, skid marks where your vehicle failed to gain traction and the fact you can be viewed from a helicopter or passing vehicle on patrol.

So what do you do instead?

Plan to move on foot pulling a high (26-inch wheel) cart (100#) capable of holding 400 pounds of gear and goods to ensure your survival.

The cart need not look like a vendors cart but camouflaged with netting so your times of travel each day are early morning and late evening about 3 miles away from where you were the day before leaving a little evidence of your prescience as possible; keep moving when it’s possible the first few months.

A high two wheeled cart gives the individual leverage in pushing or pulling it loaded with a lot of weight. These carts (4’ l x 2-1/2’ w x 1’ h with 4 sides) are available from Northern Tool and Harbor Freight for under $250 and some have fold down sides.

What kind of physical condition is required to handle such a huge load? Your physical health has to be such that you can carry a 50 pound backpack for 10 miles while staying hydrated and nourished at intervals and not be impaired will bad hips or knees.


Carrying a supply of water in a cart is part of the survival plan – three (3) 35 bottle pre-packaged each in 16.9 ounce plastic bottles (100#) will give you 30 day’s supply of fresh clean drinking water without having to find a source or exposing yourself unnecessarily.

The intermittent times you come across a water source you can use your filtration devices mentioned in an earlier article to filter your drinking sources trying to always have a week’s worth of clean water with you at all times.


Carrying an abundance of nourishing foods that don’t require a lot of preparation is important when a fire could cause problems. You have to remember a fire can be seen from miles away, smoke smelled and cooking foods will attract animals and other two legged predators too. And believe it you are not the only person who’ll be out there in the hills.

Food for 3 months:

There will be times when taking small game such as birds, rabbits, squirrels with your BB or pellet rifle can be done quietly and efficiently. They provide a small amount of nourishment and the carcass and bones can be disposed of 100 yards from camp where wild creatures and nature will dispose of them in a few days.

At night for safety of your food – food that is packed in plastic tubs placed into a 8’ x 8’ cargo lifting net (600# capacity) for the purpose of hauling it up off the ground at least 12 feet to avoid animals getting it. A 1,000# strength rope should be specially fashioned with an 8-inch aluminum pie pan secured 3-feet above the net to prevent rodents from climbing down the rope getting in your stores.

You come across a stream with minnows use a big rock or logs to slam the water with a lot of force shocking or killing them and you have a meal.

Remember it’s about survival and sustenance is not a steak and a baked potato even as nice as that sounds. Go anywhere near a population area and I guarantee you will be detected maybe detained and if you’re dressed in the height of military fashion likely shot at or killed on the spot. Don’t decide to get brave or stupid.

Let’s face facts you are not Daniel Boone and bagging a deer might make sense but what are you going to do with 100# of meat? Smoke it, dry it into jerky or have a feast and throw away what you don’t eat – no let the Bambi’s of the forest go in peace.

Shelter & Camp

4-man-dome-tentWe spoke about woodland shelter in a previous article and here again I would advice a Coleman Sundome 4-man dome tent (10#) with a rain fly.

A tent can be camouflage colored fabric, green or black all blend well into the woodland background.

For your use inside the tent: ground cover mat (3’ x 7’ x 1-1/2”), 78” mummy sleeping bag (20 degrees F), two (2)wool blankets for added warmth when needed.

Sleep fully clothed for added warmth against the night time chill with a to go fully equipped backpack, sidearm belt and spare ammo magazine, gallon of water, water proof hooded jacket and easy to slip in moccasins handy in case you need to cover your escape quickly. It’s better to escape with a week’s worth of supplies and gear than to lose your stuff and your life.

Camp should be set up at least 200 yards off the trail, your cart covered with camouflage netting. It becomes increasingly difficult to see a camp over 200 feet through a thicket of trees and low brush ground cover.

Personal Protection

Yes we went through the types of weapons I suggested for your personal safety in an earlier article but what do you have handy to use just in case?

What should your cart transport with easy access? A 12 gauge pump shotgun and 500 rounds of shells, a hip worn handgun revolved or semi-auto with 500 rounds of ammo and a BB or pellet rifle with 1,000 rounds.

You are not there for a fire fight because if it comes to that you may lose and losing your stuff is better than losing your stuff and your life.

Medical Supplies

A good portable medical kit and a few extra things packed in a water tight container:

Long Range Survival

There is a time and place to consider a long term survival plan instead of roaming the wilderness for several months.

Choose a spot to set up a more permanent camp including building a simple one room (16’ x 12’ feet log structure since trees will be in abundance. It isn’t rocket science building a log structure with a lean to roof and making it dried in using an extra heavy 20’ x 30’ tarp over the roof secured to the building with numerous tie-down connections

Scout carefully and locate a spot far off the beaten path away from civilization by at least 10 miles. Choose a heavily wooded location on level ground, near a water source, fuel source and where you can set up intruder detection devices such as cans of loose rocks on monofilament line set between trees and brush.

Here is where you plan and pick a spot to bury a cache of stuff for your long term survival needs.

This should suffice to answer some basic questions – more to come.

We will be happy to hear your thoughts

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