5 Things NOT To Do If You Are Bugging Out

In our last article I covered 5 things not to do if your plan was to shelter in place in this article I am going to cover 5 mistakes that will get you dead if you plan on bugging out.

As anyone who has read my articles or my books knows I am a big fan of Bugging Out when the SHTF and I have spoken to many people over the years about bugging out and their plans and more often than not I have ended up walking away thinking, “I will be seeing your corpse on the side of some road.” Below you will find the top 5 reasons most people will never make it their bug out site.


If your plan for bugging out is to toss that 120 pound ruck sack on your back and walk away from the chaos that is growing but your 2 pack a day, 50 pounds over weight, pudgy ass can’t walk from the far end of the Wal-Mart parking lot to the door with nothing more than the clothes on your back just exactly how far do you think you will get with all that shiny bug out gear and that heavy ass ruck sack you plan to carry?

The time to find out if you CAN walk to your bug out site is long before TSHTF! That means actually practicing your bug out by walking to your bug out location with all your gear, pets, and kids in tow. It isn’t going to do your family a hell of a lot of good if your kids can’t walk their too now is it?

You should start your bug out practice with a “map recon” of your area and your bug out location to find all the possible routes out of town as well as any obstacles you might encounter along the way. Once you have done that walk the various routes without your gear to get a feel for them during various times of the day and night.

Once you have at least one primary and one alternate route out of town grab that nifty bug out bag you have and walk all the way to your bug out location. You are going to live out of your bug out bag for however long it takes you to get there. You are looking to see if your chosen routes are actually viable, do you have gear that you don’t need, or gear that you don’t have.

Once you can make that hike on your own you need to see if your family can make it too. How does having your wife and kids along change how fast you can get out of town? Do you need to change your route to accommodate them and make it easier? If things are tough and your family and you are having trouble with walking out when things are semi-normal just how much more difficult do you think it is going to be when TSHTF?


“But I am not walking out of town I am loading up my 42′ enclosed trailer with all my preps and hopping in my family truckster and driving out of town.”

By now we’ve all seen a show like Doomsday Preppers that features someone who has that exact plan. They race to load their huge ass trailer with all their survival goodies, hook it up and hit the road, cool huh?

No, not really. Every time I see someone who has planned that way I see them carrying a huge sign that says, “I have cool shit, please kill me and take it!” The trailer makes you a huge target and draws attention to you. People aren’t stupid and they will know things are going to hell just like you do. You wold be better served not using a trailer at all. You will be more mobile, draw less attention, and if you have to abandon your vehicle you aren’t having to leave all your stuff behind.

Just like walking out of town you need to have at least one primary and one alternate route out of town.  Look for routes that will keep you off of busy roads, highways, and interstates since in all likelihood they will become huge parking lots if the SHTF. Practice driving them at various times of the day and night to get a feel for the traffic conditions. It won’t do you any good to have a route that for some reason actually becomes busier at midnight than it is at noon (it does happen), better you know that now.

Once you have your routes planned and have driven them a few times to get their feel practice actually bugging out. Do so at different times of both the day and the night.

Learn at least basic auto mechanics so if your vehicle decides to stop working or you get a flat (you’d be surprised at the number of men and women who can’t change a tire) you can get back on the road quickly.


“I’m Bugging Out to my favorite camping spot/to the country/the mountains, I’ll be safe there!”

Better rethink that strategy, and quick! Do you honestly think you are the only person who considers that place by the river their favorite camping spot? If you think it is a great spot to go camping so do hundreds of other people. Chances are you are going to find that place occupied when you get there and unless you are a Wolf and plan on killing everyone you find there and anyone who comes along later you are going to be shit out of luck.

The same thing goes for just heading out into the country/mountains. Those of us who live out here do so because we have acquired the skills necessary to live “on our own”.

Where we live at 9800+ feet the winters are harsh, we live with 3-5 feet of snow 6-7 months out of the years and low temperatures in the mid teens much of that time and highs temperatures in the high teens to low 20’s.  I can’t tell you how many people move up here from the “city” to “get back to nature and simplify” their life only to move back to the city after their first winter because they find life up here is anything but simple and getting “back to nature” is a lot of hard work.

Not to mention if we have to call 911 for ANY reason we have a 30 minute or longer wait time under normal circumstances so we tend to be better able to deal with threats that can range from a mountain lion or coyote trying to eat our cats to some thug trying to break into our shed and steal a chainsaw.  Just exactly what kind of reception do you think you will receive after TSHTF and you show up unannounced, uninvited, and probably armed at the end of my driveway? I know my land and the area surrounding it like I know every single curve of my wife’s body, do you think you would really stand a chance?


Don’t have a bug out site that is away from a city or out of town but is in or near a nice, designed sub-division. There are a few sub-divisions within a few miles of our home, some have hundreds of houses. they are pretty much like any sub-division you’d find in the outskirts of any major city or town. Which means people and people means threat to your survival if TSHTF.

Your bug out site should be very secluded, yet accessible year-round. Our bug out site is remote, it is far off the beaten path, and deep in the mountains. The nearest cabin to us is over 10 miles away.

Chances are you would drive right by the access road to the property without even seeing it and if you did by chance notice it and take a drive up it unless, you have a sturdy four-wheel drive or are willing to hike 5+ miles through the woods and mountains you won’t even find the small cabin we have up there.


“I have a bug out site deep in the mountains, with no neighbors, lots of food and water, and a great cabin, in Colorado I’m set if TSHTF!”

If you live in Nebraska, California, New York, etc no you aren’t. Honestly do you think you are going to make it to that great little spot if TSHTF? Chances are you are going to end up dead somewhere on the way.

Your bug out spot should be no more than a 2-4 hour drive or 3-4 days walk from your home. That is walking 8-10 hours a day for 3-4 days.  Your bug out bag should have enough gear, food and water, (or the ability to get water) to make that walk. Any farther then that and your chances of making it to the great bug out site go down exponentially with each day you have to travel.

Any farther then that and you are taking risks you don’t have to. You are exposing you and your family to to the Wolves out there for a much longer period of time than you should. You are running the risk of having to walk for much longer than 3-4 days exposing yourself to greater and greater risks to get to your bug out site. All of these things should be unacceptable to you.

If you have a great site 4 states away seriously consider either selling it and finding one in your home state that is within that 2-4 hour drive/3-4 day walk range or moving to within that range of your current bug out site it might just save your life and those of your family.

Thanks for reading! I look forward to seeing your comments and as always, Train to Survive!


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