Bug-Out Now? By Tyler Woods 6/18/2016

There is concern for the state of our country that the only difference between presidential candidates is minute variances of poor leadership.

Some don't see much value in remaining in harm's way and are looking for deep rural places for their family to wait out the inevitable. They engage in seemingly endless property searches, sifting through likely states with sustainable land. Herein lies the problem.

Most locations with water, good farm land, and sustainable natural resource... have already been found and likely ruined by placing a city on it. That's how cities came to be. A farmer locates good tillable land and succeeds. Other farmers move-in to adjoining properties. A country store, blacksmith, livery, and perhaps a church become necessary. Before you know it, liberals come, take over, and regulate the farmer out because his crops and critters offend their want for expansion.

Self-sufficiency seekers are left with what remains but that's not all bad. What remains are scraps of land that meet all necessary criteria except not having enough of it to make a city. These scraps of sustainable land might support a hundred or so people but not thousands. Surrounding the scraps are vast regions of wasteland that are the reason no people live there.

If you're looking, here's a great place to begin a search [https://survivalblog.com/retreatareas/] but don't believe everything any single person says about good vs. bad states, areas, and values. I personally believe the state of Texas is the safest state in this fragile union and the most likely to survive a collapse of our US economy. They have every resource necessary to thrive (sea-ports, oil, textile, beef, grains, produce, business, their own reserves of gold) and “as a sovereign country (2014), Texas would be the 12th largest economy in the world by GDP (ahead of South Korea and Australia).” (Wikipedia) That's pretty good for a state. That said, even if US financial collapse were to happen tonight, it would take years for things to settle out and find a new 'normal.' As a state, Texas is tops, but my focus is on my family and after a collapse, sustainable land in a deep rural location takes priority over any recovering government. While Texas may eventually surface in good shape, those on unsustainable land may not.
“Prepping” is a good plan for sudden and unforeseen calamities but the process after whatever initializes the bug-out, is to reach sustainability while society unravels and hopefully mends. I'm seeing former Preppers entering the transition now and emerging as homesteaders. That transition period is the great unknown. Do you have what you need? Do you really have what it takes? Have you planned for everything to survive the jump?
Having grocery resources (even hours away) would really help while you work your soil into a fertile garden. Composting and soil enrichment take time. The same goes for building a cabin, stock pens, barn, migrating to an off-grid lifestyle, and adjusting to a very physical routine. Homesteading is hard work and far different than having a well stocked bug-out vehicle. I fear many “Preppers” won't survive long after their stores are consumed and they realize that book knowledge is no excuse for experience.

“Knowledge is knowing how it's supposed to work;
experience is learning it doesn't always work that way.”

Where you find your “safe-place” may surprise you. Land is cheap where water runs deep but you can't depend on a grid dependent pump. Solar is the current 'great provider' but it's not cheap or resilient. A man in San Antonio completed a ten thousand dollar domestic solar system. He was up and running for a single day when a hail storm destroyed every collector he had installed. The federal solar farm fared no better. This would be devastating without a means to purchase replacement parts.

My grandparents welcomed 'rural electrification' to their North Dakota farm. They had a single power pole half-way between the barn and house with a single light-bulb at the top. That was it. They lived without electricity or refrigeration. Why do we spend so much resource trying to re-create the product of our enslavement? I can find better uses for the ten-thousand dollars it costs for a fully featured solar system and if I have flowing water on my property, I can drive an auto alternator by a waterwheel to charge my batteries for lights, a laptop, and radio.

In the end, it's all about value. Are you locked into a specific geographic location or are land features the determining factor? What would it take to motivate you to get settled before all the stores run empty? This current election is motivating some.

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