When disaster strikes, large numbers of people are going to bug-out of cities and other densely populated areas. Many preppers will make their way to cabins and other hideouts in sparsely populated and secluded areas. While this is not a bad idea for preppers that have homesteads to go to, not every prepper can afford to have a homestead waiting for them when SHTF.
If you don’t have a safe homestead to bug out to, then your next best bet is to seek out a small town.
By bugging-out to a rural area, you are distancing yourself from many of the problems of urban living, such as high crime rates, noise and light pollution and congestion.
In a rural area, you will also be able to develop a lot of skills necessary for survival, such as hunting, fishing, starting a fire and learning how to grow a survival garden.
Lastly, in a rural area, you are far away from the one thing that can threaten your survival: other people. The small populations in rural towns mean the people there are more likely to know each other and trust each other. This means when SHTF they will be more likely to help each other out.
While urban prepping has its own unique set of advantages, the ones of rural prepping far outweigh them, and if you have the option to bug-out of cities, you should take it. (Related: Prepping 101: Where do you buy supplies if big box stores near you are almost out of stock?)
Once you have decided on a small town you believe you can bug-out to, the first thing you need to do is ingratiate yourself with the area’s inhabitants. As the newest member of this community of several hundred or thousand people, you need to make sure that you are not a stranger to them.
Before disaster even strikes, take the time to travel to the town to get to know its inhabitants. Spend your weekends or your vacation days there. Stay a night at the local hotel, dine in at their most popular restaurants, shop at their Mom-and-Pop stores and attend worship services at their local congregation. All this effort will ensure that, when SHTF and you and thousands of other people bug-out of cities, you and your family will be welcomed by the town with open arms.
If you have the means, consider investing in property in the location as well. If you have a place in the small town that you can call your own, you can establish a supply cache that you can rely on for emergencies. This stockpile should contain the common necessities, such as food, water, natural medicines and a first aid kit.
Not only that, but it should also contain items that you believe you will need for your specific emergencies. If you’re bugging-out because of heavy rain and flooding, your supply cache should have extra clothes, raincoats and other waterproof gear. If you’re bugging-out because of riots and civil unrest, it should have extra guns and ammunition.
Your survival stockpile will help you get through disasters, but your odds of success will be a lot higher if the members of the small town’s community that you trust the most are included in your preps. They showed you hospitality when you first came to their town, don’t forget to return the favor.