(OpSec): Protecting Your Survival Preparations

Are you intentionally setting your survival preparations up for failure?  Are you or others in your family or group telling extended family, friends and/or strangers what you are doing to survive the next disaster or the coming apocalypse?

Are you advertising to others that you are the “GTG” (go-to-guy or gal) to flock to during an emergency or SHTF event?  This brief article provides an overview on the topic of operational security of your survival planning and preparations before whatever SHTF or TEOWAWKI event you are prepping for occurs.  If you don’t take precautions ahead of time to protect and safeguard your actions, all your efforts could be vain.

What’s OPSEC?

Operational Security, known as OPSEC,  is the process of protecting your planning and actions; safeguarding  information on you, your family, or survival group; and preventing potential adversaries from discovering or learning about our preparations.  It is used to preserve our plans, safeguard in progress efforts, and protect what has been accomplished.  Your overall success will depend upon secrecy so that others cannot target you during a crisis event.  The human animal is the most dangerous animal to confront, since he/she is a thinking predator capable of adapting.

The less information that is known about you and your efforts by others in a crisis, the safer you and yours will be, and the harder for others to target you.  A good motto from World War II is “Loose lips sink ships.”  This well known slogan is a reference to helping safeguard information on the sailing of troop and supply convoys in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans.

A “The Twilight Zone” Lesson

Some of you may be familiar with the old television show “The Twilight Zone” which aired in the late 1950s and early 1960s.  There isThe Shelter an episode called “The Shelter” (first aired Sept. 29, 1961) which gives viewers a look at how people can react in a crisis.  This short 25 minute story depicts the problem of friends and neighbors knowing about your survival preparations for a disaster.  In the episode, a suburban dinner party is interrupted by a government bulletin warning of an impending nuclear attack on the country.  As the neighbors scramble in panic to prepare themselves, many turn against the one family that had the foresight to install a permanent bomb shelter in their basement with supplies.  Since the neighborhood knows about the shelter, the situation quickly deteriorates into a “dog-eat-dog” situation.  It is not until a “false alarm” announcement is made that calm is restored.  However, the damage is done and a real and ugly lesson is learned about all concerned.  It is well worth watching (Click Here to Watch Part 1).

Doomed Before the Disaster?

One example of preppers who have violated basic OPSEC principles and compromised their own secrecy and exposed their Doomsday Prepperpreparations are the McClung family Phoenix, Ariz.  The silver lining here is that their public disclosures serve as a good lesson and a distraction away from the rest of us.

Dennis and Danielle McClung, from the suburb of Mesa, have made their presence and preparations known not just locally, but nationally and internationally via the internet on a host of survival websites and YouTube; and by appearing on such cable channel shows as National Geographic’s “Doomsday Preppers” and on TLC’s Livin’ for the Apocalypse.” The McClung’s have opened their home and preparations, to include their elaborate aquaponic greenhouse in the yard and the store room of food and supplies, for the world to see.

Greater Phoenix is an isolated desert urban area of more than 1.5 million people, and is highly dependent on interstate trucking and the railroads to keep the flow of food, fuel and goods coming to feed and service the population.  In a SHTF or TEOWAWKI event, depending upon the situation and time of the year, Phoenix and Mesa’s isolation in a harsh and barren desert environment may leave hundreds of thousands trapped and forced to fight for resources.  Unfortunately, crime-wise, Phoenix and Mesa are well above the national averages for all types of crimes and has a significantly large number of ethnic street gangs – many are well organized and armed.

The McClung’s have openly discussed their plans to “bug-in” when apocalypse event occurs.  It is great they are sharing information with others, but at what peril to them?  If there was ever a better “Famous Last Quote” it would have to be Dennis McClung on camera with NatGeo saying “We try to stay under the radar as much as possible.” McClung might as well paint his house orange and wire up neon “Loot Here” signs to the roof solar panels.  They may get lucky and last a full week before the armed and violent hoards come a knocking at their respective doors!

What Can You Do?

Look at your daily activities from an adversaries’ point of view and determine how you can alter your behavior and actions.  HereOperational Security are basis suggestions:

• Safeguard what others might learn about you and your family.

• Develop and apply countermeasures, which are ways of preventing others from obtaining your information.

• Determine who you can trust and confide in with your information – be very selective.

• Develop a cover story that is plausible that deflects from your preparations and satisfies curiosity.

Measures You Can Practice:

• Make sure that your family and inner-circle knows what OPSEC is and that information needs to be safeguarded.

• Routinely reinforce the importance OPSEC.

• Be aware of your surroundings, who is watching you, and what you say in public, in emails, on social media sites, and on cell phones and hard phone lines.

• Keep a “need-to-know” mindset – only inform people with a need to know your business.

• Shred any documents with personal and financial information, and receipts of your purchases.

• Don’t stack up boxes or throw out wrappers and packing for your survival gear and supplies in your curbside trash.  Dispose of this trash at dumpster away from your area.

• Use a different “ship to” address for deliveries, such as your work or a P.O. box, instead of your residence.

Click to Read

Limit What You Say About:

• Where you live (your specific street location or neighborhood) and your family members.

• The location of your “bug-in” or “bug-out” sites.

• Where you keep your “bug-out” or “get-home” bags.

• The location of any pre-positioned survival caches.

• Your bug-out routes and methods (avoid potential ambushes).

• Any issues concerning your security systems or protective measures.

• The extent of your preparations and your weapons, equipment and stockpiles.

• The physical health of you and family/survival members, and any disabilities each may have.

This is no intended to be an all encompassing article on OPSEC, but serves as an initial primer to provide some of the basics.  There is much more you can learn and put into practice.  The important take-away is that you need to take precautions so you and your survival group doesn’t become a target if the worst happens.  For more information or to discuss this topic with others, visit the SurvivalCache.com Forums.

About the author: Bama Bull is an Army veteran and lives in southeastern Alabama. His interest in survival preparedness are based on the threats associated with hurricanes, tornadoes, coronal mass ejections, pandemic diseases, and financial collapse.

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Written by Joel Jefferson

Joel is one of the original founders of SurvivalCache.com. After college, he joined the USMC where he served as an (0302) Marine Infantry Officer. Joel is an avid outdoorsman and spends much of his free time in the mountains. Joel’s hobby is researching survival gear & weapons as well as prepping. Read his full interview here. Read more of Joel's articles.

55 thoughts on “(OpSec): Protecting Your Survival Preparations”

  1. I watched "The Shelter" while working on this post, what a freak show. Something about B & W shows (especially Twilight Zone) makes them even more freaky.

    • Hitchcock knew and modern directors forget the mind is the greatest set on which to base a show. The modern slash and splatter movies are not nearly as terrifying as Psycho or The Birds. Just my not so humble opinion.

  2. Not practicing good OPSEC can be the difference between life and death of you and whoever you are watching out for. It may mean a few extra mouths to feed an your supplies running out sooner or could be a total disaster with a giant mob pounding your door down and taking everything you have up to your life. Don't let your loose lips sink your ship..

  3. A good post, thank you Bama Bull. As I remember the show (I'll have to watch it again) the only one who learned anything was the shelter owner – he may have to leave town. Everyone else figured a community barbeque would fix everything up just fine. Sheeple won't learn!

    I tend to admit to the three days that NASA, FEMA and others say to have. I'm just a good sheeple doing what the government tells me to do. If the folks I'm talking to seem to be receptive to the idea of being prepped, I point out that Ike took 7 to 10 days for services to be restored so it seemed that perhaps prudence would say have 10 days to two weeks worth of stuff.

    The delicate part is when they want to talk about guns. I never admit to what I have unless I really trust the folks. I tend to try to guide them through what THEY think they will need. A neighbor who borrowed a shotgun during Ike decided ultimately on a 20 gauge for the house and .38 special handguns for he and his wife. She had been assaulted in Argentina before coming to the US and was uncomfortable – I sent her to my favorite purveyor of lead launchers who does the best CCL class I've ever seen. It is a fine line between helping and revealing too much.

    • Even if you don't have much in the way of weapons by not telling anyone what you have, at the very least, it makes them wonder. Uncertainty can sometimes be the best deterrent. So thats a smart move.

  4. My philosophy is to have enough firepower to defend myself, but not enough to 'go to war'. I figure that if the SHTF really bad and I need to bug out, I will want to travel light and I won't want to be carrying a crazy assault rifle. I'd rather have a light .22 LR rifle that I can hunt small game with and maybe another weapon (pistol) for defense.

    The only people who need lots of weapons are those who plan to bug in or think their property will attract a lot of attention, maybe because they live on a farm. Otherwise, I'd rather spend my money and effort on other preperations.

    In agreement with this article, I think OPSEC is absolutely essential for people who bug in. Its not AS important for people who bug out. However, you should still limit the info given out, without a doubt. Not only that but some people think "Preppers" are a little crazy.

    • Actually, some people keep a lot of duplicates. 5 identical rifles, 5 identical pistols, in case they are broken, worn out, whatever. In my mind, that is the reason for owning lots of guns… not because you expect to go to war, but because what you have might have to last for a very long time!

      • Two of the same weapon I can kind of understand. More than that seems a little unnecessary. I'd rather spend the extra money on getting a high-quality gun that with the _right maintaince_ will last me a lifetime than owning 5 low quality weapons.

        Also, I think you misunderstood my point. My point is that each weapon a person possesses serves a particular purpose/function. Why spend money on a rifle that you can't really hunt effectively with? You're much more likely to spot small game than large game and if you are bugging out you want to travel light anyway.

        • I don't know, but kind of agree with the idea of " one is none and two is one ". But the idea that I have, but can't really aford it, is one for training and two for storage and /or cache and / or burial with other things. I don't know, just saying.

      • Unless you're planning to equip others, two lead launchers for each caliber is probably sufficient. I have a 50 year old .22 that still performs flawlessly. 5 rifles for 4 people makes since, one for each and a spare but 5 of each for each limits your preps severely unless you have as much money as Bill Gates. (If you do, I'd like to talk to you about some "gift" purchases 🙂 ) Two is one, one is none in a fire fight. Spare parts can keep a non-combat gun up and running; 5 $1200 rifles with $300 scopes is $6000 you don't have for other uses.

        I have multiple guns because a 30-30 carbine is about perfect for the Texas big thicket while a 7mm Rem Mag does well in the long range places. An AK or HK-91 or (if your a fan) AR makes an excellent mid range self defense gun and can back up the other two, non-combat platforms but it is not necessarily ideal. A semi-auto is usually less effective than a bolt for long range. A 7mm Rem Mag or any of the others is too bloody light a round if your dealing with Brown Bear. If you ever go after a large dangerous animal (African Big 5 for example or the big bruins/bison in the states) you need something in at least .375 H&H Mag (by law in Africa). Guns are tools and while you CAN drive a nail with a pipe wrench it usually is ineffective and does a poor job. Just my not so humble opinion.

  5. I framed in the back ¼ of my garage, which does a few things for me. It gives me a secure, out of sight area to store my tools and preps, it gives me more storage room, and it helps me stay more organized. I went with a cheap interior door and a $10 locking door knob to close everything up, it's enough to keep the curious away, wont draw attention like a sturdy door with a deadbolt would, and anyone that really wanted in there could bust down whatever I put up anyway.

  6. I get what you are saying about opsec but I think it very easily leads to a bunker mentality. Unless we think about group and community security, you'll probably be discovered and overwhelmed. You'll find me convening the block and determining how to help each other. Perhaps I'm not the best survivalist, but I think banking on not being found out, is just as risky as being open and community oriented and that backfiring due to lack of resources. Talking with your immediate neighbors and helping them prep can be the difference between life and death. 4 guys and interlocking sectors of fire can turn an "organized" street gang into a pile of corpses pretty fast; I know how those vermin operate and I'm not intimidated. Just remember that total collapses are rare, and that reduced resources are more likely than total absence of resources. Btw, my Aunt and uncle are both immigrants and own a restaurant chain; they're worried about the not so ethinc meth head gangs.

    • I agree with my fellow posters, who are more concerned about helping others prepare, than keeping states secrets. I talk about it with friends and family at work; (more tongue and cheek at work). I've gotten a few people to at least store water and medical supplies for themselves.

      If your a homesteader, and a long term SHTF scenario arises, bunker mentality will ensure you don't survive for very long.

      I'm not saying announce to the world your survival plan. On my own street, 1 person who thinks like myself, has a clue about my preperations. But no one with in walking distance could even find my place.

      • I go the standard, don't forget to have a little bit of stuff set aside for emergencies, route. I also do things like post storm warnings and the like to my Face Book page and remind people to stock up on anything they might need before hand. I've also taken a few folks to cowboy action shooting matches. I don't think I've ever talked to anyone about prepping directly.

        • CAS is an excellent way to ease into things, in my not so humble opinion. Since I think we will essentially end up looking like the late 1800's if we go grid down, the weapons of that era also work. I am a fan of SAA and lever guns. There is NO multishot weapon that is simpler or more rugged than a Single Action Army revolver. In over 40 years of shooting lever guns I have NEVER had a malfunction on a lever gun; personally or in my presence. The only thing simpler than these is a single shot and a double barrel is just 2 singles mounted side by side on a single stock. The absolute fastest second shot in the known universe is a double. (That's why so many professional hunters carried them in Africa) What is not to like about that as a basic 3 gun battery?
          In case you haven't noticed I like the cowboy stuff as well. I like to shoot black powder cartridges for sound, visual and smell but any cowboy gun will get the job done. I can put aimed fire down range as quickly as most folks can put AIMED fire down range with their fully tricked out space guns.

          If the cowboy stuff used by a practiced shootist won't get it done, you probably need full auto, preferably belt fed and that may not be enough!

          • I have one minor quibble. If you want to go with a single action revolver, my recommendation would be one of the modern Ruger Blackhawk, Super Blackhawk or Vaquero variants. Thanks to their transfer bar safety mechanism they may be safely carried with all six chambers loaded. A traditional Colt Single Action Army can only be safely carried with 5 chambers loaded with the empty chamber under the hammer (there was nothing to prevent the hammer from moving forward if the weapon got dropped or the hammer got struck somehow). There are also a couple of other improvements that Ruger made to the action in general. Last but not least, if one acquires a reloading manual, one will usually find sections devoted to hot loads for given calibers that are prominently labeled, "For Rugers Only". Proof, as if any were needed, that Ruger has a brick outhouse of a revolver design.

            I have only ever had one "failure" with a Ruger single action revolver, and it was partly operator error. The weapon in question was a Super Blackhawk chambered in .44 magnum. Over the course of multiple range sessions the screw that held the ejector rod housing to the barrel loosened and came off, and as a result the ejector and other pieces/parts came off. I was able to retrieve the larger parts but some of the smaller parts eluded me. Note that even without an ejector the weapon was still fully functional, one just needed to use a pen or a pencil to eject the spent cases. I partly blame myself as I arguably should have noticed the screw working loose. At any rate a trip to a gunsmith took care of the problem for minimal expense. While I don't have that particular revolver anymore I still own and generally recommend Ruger single action and double action revolvers, and am thinking of working my little pistol collection around (trading some off to buy others) in order to get another Ruger single action. From the standpoint of both reliability and ease of keeping them fed, the Ruger Blackhawk convertibles in .357 magnum/9mm and .45 ACP/.45 Long Colt have much to recommend them.

          • absolutely agree. Thank you for pointing out the need to keep to "cowboy" loads unless you have a modern revolver capable of handling modern loads. Any of the Ruger's you mentioned can handle modern loads and hold 6. My .357 Mag is a "5 shooter" because of the lack of transfer bar. My Blackhawk can handle modern .45 Colt (AKA LONG Colt) as well as .45 ACP with the second cylinder. I am a BIG fan of Ruger. I don't work for them but wish I did!
            Thank you for pointing out the omission in my post.

  7. I saw both shows… The melo-drama of TTZ is so B movie that the real issue is hard for me to take seriously. It is of course just a tv show. How people will really react is situationally dependent and debatable. Some of my neighbors are probably more prepared than I am. Our HOA has an emergency stash as well as an organized community group for emergencies. In my opinion we will not be fighting zombie biker “ethnic” gangs. We will be challenged by power, sanitation, and possibly medical mass casualties.
    I also saw how the McClung’s ate… I think they are safe from most zombies.

  8. Excelent Artical.
    Living Grey is a mind set.Stop telling others your business,stop braging about what you have.You may lose it all.Yes I saw the orginal on TV in B/W it left a mark.
    "The human animal is the most dangerous animal to confront, since he/she is a thinking predator capable of adapting."
    This says it all.JMHO

  9. Thank you for the article. There's more to preparedness than stockpiling, and physical training. The Dilbert cartoon was priceless, but the input was even more priceless.

  10. I think that being quiet is a great idea and not advertising..yet on the other hand…it will take a group to defend a neighborhood…if you can get together with a neighbor that you can trust…I have neighbors we all have ordered food from Emergency Essentials…and we have purchased large amounts of ammuniation…I have built a section of my garage to look like an electrical space..I put an outlet on the front with the cover off an electrical panel..its actually a large space that opens and behind it I have ammo..food..flashlights..matches..and other items that might be necessary….then I have boxes with 5 gallon pails and spray painted the boxes..the ones with beans I marked…1/2" beeny connectors…
    the one with Wheat…is marked 2" White connectors….sometimes things can be hidden right in front of someone….be careful out there


  11. Now, where's the 'community involvement' article…see, that's what keeps preppers in a tizzy!!
    Do I divulge to neighbors…oH, you can't go it alone..but, but..they'll steal from your garden; you need someone as your backup when you leave the house.

    see..make up your minds.

    • The perennial problem every military/survivalist faces. How much openness is prudent and how much needlessly complicates your life and drives away help? It's a little easier in the military because the good guys generally wear the same uniform. After TSHTF there will be no identifying badges. Get it wrong and you could drive away help or let a BG inside your defenses. You won't get it right 100% of the time so make sure your planning includes what to do WHEN you get it wrong.

  12. Crucial info, great article, as a 20 year military vet, OPSEC is in the blood. The problem lies in where to draw the line about how much your friends/neighbors know, and that is very dependent on the individual situation.

    I just moved to a rural area near suburbia, my 'limit' is letting people know that i am a responsible citizen that heeps a few beans and blankets for tornadoes and ice storms. I also enjoy punching holes in paper targets at the range. I think my neighborhod views me like this:
    He has a gun, knows how to use it, and probably doesn't have enough stuff to risk my life over…
    at least that is what I am going for. It also opens me up enough to discuss prepping stuff without sounding paranoid, and will hopefully allow me to find other like minded individuals nearby

    • Agreed, sir. There is a fine line between "turning turtle" and prudent Op Sec. How can I be "gray" and still fulfill my responsibilities as a citizen? How do I defend the 2nd Amendment but not show up on Big Sis' radar? It is a balancing act; sometimes I get it right, sometimes I don't. I stay off of social network sites because of Op Sec concerns but let's face it, if someone wanted to find out who Capt Bart really is, I'd say I'd have less than 48 hours unless they were REALLY incompetent. The trick is to not make "them" want to find me. A delicate balance indeed.

      • Good point, it’s easy to find information about people from social media like facebook. Although they think they have a private account they are often featured on their family or fiends public pages. Simply doing stuff with people who have similar interests, friends or family can land you on a public site. There are many good articles on how to remain clandestine from the zombie bikers with computers.

  13. Here in Australia, I reckon , that from doing lots of reading and research, there MAY be 100,000 people who are prepping, its not even on 99% percent of peoples radar, look at the floods in Queensland 13 months ago, what was learned ? nothing it seems, large scale flooding is now occuring around the mid north coast and again Queensland.

    Combine that stupidity with the welfare state mentality, well, enough said, I personally have little sympathy for people who I casually talk to and then tell me .. " the Government will look after us ", then I shake my head and walk away, even in my own family my wife and I are very careful who we talk to, people just are not interested, they want another Mc Mansion or that shiny new car, or its the flouride in the water. Frankly a lot of people will get a real shock when the Euro goes down the toilet or the US Dollar goes hyperinflation .

    Sadly in many ways the whole screwed up financial system needs re booting, unfortunately we ( preppers will in there too ) hopefully helping others as well as creating a better society that rises from the ashes of the horrendous mess the world is in

    • You have my sympathy, sir. I am amazed how people who curse the tax man or the Dept. of Motor Vehicles or the local zoning commission think that the GOVERNMENT (notice how when they say it, you can hear the capitalization?) will efficiently and quickly rescue them for what ever disaster happens? When folks say that I often ask them "Why do you think the GOVERNMENT cares about your pittling problem?"

    • Hi Chris,

      The Brisbane floods were a real wake up call for our family. Although we were not flooded, being able to secure 72 hours worth of food for a family of 6 from coles was a big learning experience.

      We have moved from vaguely reading websites and doing superficial things – to having a 72 hour stash and onto a month stash.

      We have a bug out location where my parents live within a tank of gas from home. BUT we are at the point of working out a way forward for prepping in the future.

      • Whoisbiggles,
        Just a minor point, that tank of gas range is usually thought of as 200 to 300 miles. While that may be true on any given Sunday afternoon, what is your gas mileage when EVERYONE is stuck on the road and gridlock rules? The normal 5 hour drive to Dallas was something like 28 hours during the Rita evacuation. I was driving west in northern Louisiana when Katrina was coming in. It took me 4 hours to go 7 miles and we where up on I-20, well north of New Orleans. Moral is have extra gas just in case it becomes a two tank trip.

  14. Even the most innocent things can be a problem. For example, a friend asked me to teach a friend to shoot. We spoke of it a few times. Now, I'm the gunman on her facebook page. I'm not certain you can take enough precautions in the age ot Facebook, Twitter etc.

    • Yep, and if your face shows up on the internet, someone can find you! Again, the key is to not give "them" the desire to find you. I'd talk to my friend about the girlfriend. That is a relationship you may not want to cultivate.

  15. I would tell you about my operational security protocols, but that would violate my security protocols. Damn, I have said too much already.

  16. Great article! Security is something that is often overlooked. We all know the three is one, one is none rule; well, if you are loosed lipped three will become none just as easily when someone takes it from you. My coworkers and friends think I am a granola and I don't dispell the notion. It keeps my family safe. The only one who realy knows is my wife. I don't even tell my parents all that we do and have. I love the loose lips sink ships visual.

    • That graphic was bloodily accurate circa 1942. I hide stuff from my family as well. As my family eases into the prepper live style I reveal more but it is hard to not trust members of your own family. I have some family members that WILL NOT MAKE IT because they will be waiting on the government to come to their rescue. Thank God all my children are now on board.
      My acquaintances at work just don't know very much about me other than I'm right wing, wing nut, who knows a lot about guns. That is probably too much already but I wasn't always gray and it was fun to annoy the progressive water melons I work with.

  17. Good article on OP Sec! One thing I would point out is that some preppers like to "dress" the part (ie. 5-11 type clothes, shirts & hats with various firearms logos, black combat type boots etc.). Even if these people keep their mouths shut they will be likely become targets/ victims due to their choice of apparel. (I don't have anything against 5-11 apparel and it is good quality stuff.) It depends on where you live what the "gray-man" look is. In my area I dress the same way most of the local farmers and trades people dress. Just another thing to consider with Op-Sec. YMMV.

    • Dave,
      well said, sir. The mall ninja dress is a good way to impress non-preppers. They also impress LEO and true preppers but in a very undesirable way. I've worn western wear all of my life. In Houston it is fairly common and does not identify me as a prepper. It does have the advantage of having people (especially yankee transplants of the more "liberal" persuasion) leap to the conclusion that I'm some dumb, hick cowboy. I enjoy that mistake as I listen to them make total jackasses out of themselves. 5-11 clothing can be 'non-prepper' depending on how you accessorize the clothes.

      • Thanks Capt Bart! There is much more to Op-Sec than what we say or don't say, including our hobbies, interests, and beliefs. I do alot of local mission work in our community which makes me aware of resources that could be very handy if SHTF! Although that is not the reason I do mission work, it could be a side benefit. I feel that service to your community should be an intregal part of everyones overall life plan. JMHO.

  18. I just got this today.
    One of the "stars" of the Nat Geo 'Doomsday Prepper' show had his guns taken away for 'mental' issues. He thinks he can't prep now because he has no guns (he is wrong but I suspect he's in shock and I'd say the same thing publicly myself) but the fact is his job just got much more difficult (because he was on the show?).
    How much DO you trust the folks you buy goods and services from? On a credit card?
    I've started a tread over on the forum


    (note the catchy title) to allow a discussion of this. I think it is important to realize that the government is not your friend and a great many of your acquaintances will sell you down the river because your government asks them to do so.

  19. hi all
    just remember traveling has it's dangers.there will be people or groups claiming the land you may be crossing.which they claim for there food bank.they may also think what you carry is worth your life.watch panic it changes people into animals,with no thought or reason.if you dont believe that watch a big sale,then watch the savages come alive.then multiply it by 1000 ,you get close to what to expect.prepare as much as you can,and survive.

  20. I disagree. Community is an important part of survival. You should be active in educating your neighbors and at least getting them interested in preparing at some level. I make a point of turning on every light in the house when the power frequently goes off in my neighborhood with my generator running. Many neighbors seeing this have bought their own generators over the last few years. Lead by example but don’t put all your eggs in one basket and expect to stay at your primary residence undetected with all your prepping supplies. There are 2 different levels that need to be discussed, short term and long term.

    The vast majority of us live very close to some large city with subdivisions in houses made of wood and glass…(ie flammable). Most of these houses are on extremely accessable roads with the houses easily viewable from the street. To think that you can just stay put and defend such a place 24/7 from roaming mobs is idiocy. Also travelling to a backup location is incredibly dangerous if you find yourself needing to pack up and leave your house. You have a chance of lasting longer only if a small community of people can band together in the short term. Eventually that plan may fail.

    THAT SAID, it’s a bad idea to have a long term plan to “Bug In” or stay put for the LONG TERM. If you really want to be prepared, you’ll need remote property that you think you have a chance of reaching. This property should be off the grid and not easily visible from any road or marked path. In the meantime, you’ll need a small amount of hidden storage in case some random teens or hunter finds it and finds your hidden cache. You should have easy access to water, food source, and someplace where you can live as easy of a life as possible without being detected. This is the plan where you have OPSEC.

    blacjak is right, there are quite a few other issues to consider like travel. Most cars can’t get by blocked roads since even a 4×4 can’t plow through cars. A motorcycle would be a great bet. (I bought a BMW R1200GSA for it’s insane carrying ability and 500-mile fuel tank range.) A backup plan is a boat, (keep in mind many lockes may be inoperatble.) Those lucky enough to own a plane can fly to a truly remote location but don’t expect to fly with much weight and supplies…

  21. I havent read all the comments so if it has already been discussed, I apologize. Another point to make is what happens every time you buy a gun, and it gets registered. Its hard to do but make as many of your purchases under the radar as possible. When the gov. comes to your door it will be nice to only have a .22 rifle and pistol registered instead of your assault weps. I talk to alot of poeple about my preps in an effort to bring them on board BUT all these poeple also know me as the crazy jarhead whose yard you dont walk across… it all boils down to wether you are a wolf or a lamb.

  22. i know that my stockpile is safe.It is a good idea to stay off the radar and try not tell peaple that you are stashing gear even if they seem like nice peaple,peaple get ugly when they get hungry!

  23. we always talk about keeping our stock pile a secret from our nighbors, but do we ever think about keeping it secret from the government I mean with all due respect the government isnt really a friend and the government doest really care for survivalists. just food for thought


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