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Getting home

Discussion in 'General Survival and Preparedness' started by lehcpa, Jan 14, 2007.

  1. lehcpa

    lehcpa Just a Bean Counter

    As I have mentioned in other posts, I work in Memphis and live across the Mississippi River in Arkansas. It is about a 45 mile drive one way. My wife is a stay-at-home mom and we have two small children 5 & 2. Our home is situated on a 160 block of farm land with most of the resources that will be needed if the SHTF. Therefore, I will feel pretty secure once I am home with my family. Fortunately, I have two brothers who could look after my family until I get home.

    So, my concern is what it will take to get home. I am always armed with my CCW sufficiently to meet most day to day events. However, if some event were to occur to cause social breakdown (more than exists in Memphis on a day to day basis), I could face a big challenge. Worst case scenerio is that transportation routes could be broken and I would have to trek out on foot. I am considering putting a cache of items in a storage facility that would compliment and suppliment my BOB.

    These are just my initial thoughts. I welcome any comments and suggestions as I strive to solve this problem.
  2. ghrit

    ghrit Ambulatory anachronism Administrator Founding Member

    Your problem is the bridges. Strap a kayak on your car and leave it there except for practice. You should be good to go. Might be some walking on the other side of the river, but at least you'll be headed the right way.
  3. lehcpa

    lehcpa Just a Bean Counter


    I have thought about the bridges out possibility. I have people on both sides of the river with both boats and airplanes that would be willing to help me out.
  4. Blackjack

    Blackjack Monkey+++

    So 45 miles out of the city to get home. I don't know if getting a storage facility would be worth it, just a good "get home" bag in the truck. You might not be able to get to the facility, and if you are walking you cant carry any more than a good bagfull anyway.

    Since you always carry, that's a great start. The get home bag should have a couple extra full mags or speedloaders if your a revolver guy. I don't think I'd go as far as a longarm in the truck as if you're walking out of the city it would attract too much unwanted attention.

    I'd say make the bag a backpack.
    Some emergency medical stuff (stop bleeding or splint a bone at the worst)
    Some quick energy food (candy/protein/energy bars)
    Maybe a can of meat or a bag of jerky or trail mix
    A canteen of water (and maybe a couple purification tablets)
    A Rain Pancho and maybe a foldup thermal blanket in case it's winter time ($2 at Gander Mtn. and they fold up to the size of a wallet)
    Flashlight and extra batteries
    Extra pair (read dry) of boots and socks.

    I'll have to think of some more.... good question, we have a new item.... the "get home bag". My destination if tshtf is only 8 miles from here so it shouldn't be to bad for me, but 45 miles out of a major urban area and across a river is another story..... how small do blow up rafts get :)
  5. E.L.

    E.L. Moderator of Lead Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    While I wouldn't suggest putting a canoe in that storage unit, maybe a smaller john boat with a small outboard motor to cross the "mighty Missisip." You also need to consider alternate routes. Can you find a ferry across, or would you have to walk across the bridge. Maybe a bike stored would also be a good idea. With a bike (motorcycle or bicycle) you could weave in and out of cars stuck in traffic, and hopefully get across the bridge and home. If worse came to worse, you could stay in your storage unit for a couple of days until things blew over. That being said maybe a cot would be a good investment for your cache.
  6. Tango3

    Tango3 Aimless wanderer

    lehcpa, buddy,

    Mee 'emmphus??
    I was at blytheville Ar, for two years 20minute north...:3 words


    (bad news.)
  7. Seacowboys

    Seacowboys Senior Member Founding Member

    Hide a pirogh on wolf river. I used to live in Memphis but got out when the population shifted. I still have a number of friends there and I don't what they would do.
  8. lehcpa

    lehcpa Just a Bean Counter

    My bag

    I currently stock these items in my bag:

    • Beretta 92 vacuum sealed with 100 rounds of ammo plus holster
      • (this is in addition to my compact 1911 that I carry daily)
    • Three day supply of energy bars
    • Three day supply of water plus purification tablets
    • Minimum first aid kit
      • (I am an EMT so I also carry a full trauma kit in my car at all times)
    • One change of clothes and comfortable hiking boots
    • Emergency pancho
    • Emergency blanket
    • Compass and map of the area
    • Fixed blade knife
    • Lighter and matches
    • Emergency radio and flashlight
      • (also carry a Surefire Executive in my pocket at all times)
    • Cheap blue tarp
    • Roll of nylon cord
    I am sure that I am leaving something out as the above list is from memory. I am considering a long weapon of some sort. If the weather is cool enough, I can discretely carry a short shotgun. Otherwise, I agree that it would best left behind rather than draw attention to its presence.
  9. snowbyrd

    snowbyrd Latet anguis in herba

    inner tube

    water crossing can be a female dog thing. Not so bad if prepped for it A tube is good, Yeppers I been by the mighty missssy siiiiip. Not in Flood stage no big deal, just end up a mile or so down stream. Fear is the gratest factor. Hey to get to me and mine?? No mercy. An easy way? I don.t know. PM me for real adviced. snowbyrd
  10. Tango3

    Tango3 Aimless wanderer

    Scenario? divide it into sections work to "memphus cache", to ark side cache #1 ark cachet #2 cache half way,final, then cache...to home. go light, ride or drive when you can I think this is very doable for minmal investment .Or you may just get out in the first wave and drive over and all the way home...

    45 miles is not a walk to the store, but not an unheard of backpacking trip,45 miles @ 10/day at an unmotivated/unmotorized pace of 4 or 5 days.Healthy motivated, half thattime , your final destination is home, you can collapse on the porch.Mountainhouse freeze dried spaceage ultra light backpack meals with lots of calories, pot ,stove camelbak, use modern back packing techology, lots of , spare wool socks. water filter,one handgun maybe bicycle or dual purpose bike stored on the Ark side...respirator( think "911 walk out") : aeons ago the mississipi changed direction when the fault went, kayak may be iffy for a while.

    ,I think the idea of a storage space area near work would be a good "home base" or just fil up your truck( you do have a pickup don't you??) What are reasons to get out?: Think terrorist strike (dust/ gasmask , bug in food/ water/light sleeping bag. lcd pocket tv for news...I don't remember the bridges, but the most direct route will be packed..I remember a bridge by mud island.. Is the next nearest bridge dyersburg??(I think thats even closer to the fault) Is there anybody else at work from the arky side you can team up with? maybe you can split a "mississipi boat ride"(spit)... or inflatable in a storage space.

    A single minded drive to get home simplifies things, pack 4or 5 freeze dried meals, waterfilter 2litres of tap water, , forget fishing/ gathering / forget a .22, carry your berretta for 2leggers. forget a long gun, keep a low profile ,you aren't lookin to take on looters, just keep a compass bearing and beeline for the ranch.
  11. Tracy

    Tracy Insatiably Curious Moderator Founding Member

    If available, I'd have extra just-in-case stuff stored at the workplace. In an office; there's always the back of a file cabinet drawer. Shop; under the back corner of work bench or behind tools in the large drawer.

    Rubber rafts, 2-man size, can be packed small and tight and all it takes is a small pump in your vehicle to get you river-bound.

    A bike is a good out and you can get collapsible models to fit your vehicle. You can even get a storage case for them that turns into it's own trailer (to haul your raft;)).
  12. Tango3

    Tango3 Aimless wanderer

  13. lehcpa

    lehcpa Just a Bean Counter

    I had not considered the bicycle, but something like that could fit in the closet in my office with no problem.
  14. Blackjack

    Blackjack Monkey+++

    That sounds like a good idea to me. If tshtf while your at the office, you could throw it in your vehichle and head out knowing if you encounter gridlock you can throw on the backpack and start peddling.
  15. ghrit

    ghrit Ambulatory anachronism Administrator Founding Member

    A bike in the office at work has merit, so long as you don't forget to keep the tires up.
  16. monkeyman

    monkeyman Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    If you have the place to stor it and the funds for it I would figure the above bike and there was a thing posted around here some time back that is a replacement front wheel for the bike that turns it into a moped with a top speed of around 30 mph and gets about 100 mpg or better. With that set up, a good BOB then as long as the bridges are still standing then you should still be able to make it home in a day. If they arent standing then in warmer weather a 2 man inflatable raft and a life jacket would get you across the river. Put the gear and bike in the raft, wear the life jacket and swim across towing the raft. In cold weather might want a cannoe or bigger raft and if its dead of winter (at least based on the Missouri river around KC in dead ofwinter) then crossing without a bridge may not be an option.

    Another thing to consider as far as ways to get across would be if there are any railroad bridges in the area that may or may not be connected with a commuter bridge. If things are so bad the other bridges are out then trains most likely wont be running so a RR bridge may still be an option.
  17. phishi

    phishi Psy-Ops Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Here is my take on your situation:

    This is a three part problem, Memphis, the river, and the walk thru Arkansas. IMO you need to first figure out multiple ways to cross the river without getting wet. I would look to any bridges, followed by boat rides or alternate transportation, followed by swimming as a last resort. Having multiple options that you can pick from, depending on the situation, will then determine the route you take thru Mephis, as well as determine your starting point for how you will walk thru Arkansas.

    I like the bike idea, gives you some speed and agility that people on foot or in cars may lack. However, it does come with some disadvantages, mainly having to maintain it and the possibility that you will grow attached to this idea and not be able to think outside of the box. If faced with two options of leaving Memphis for instance, one that allowed you to keep the bike but meant that you would have to ride thru a tough section of town, or another that would get you across safely, but meant that you would have to leave the bike and walk the remainder of your route, well, what would you do? Just something to keep in the back of your mind......

    I'm not a fan of the storage idea. It is an additional outlay of funds that IMO do not give you that much of an advantage. You can carry, as pointed out above, everything you should need for this trek on your back. Even allowing for some fudge factor, this can be easily done. Besides, you are the one that has to haul this gear. I vote for slim and light.

    Looking over what you posted as your gear, I would do the following:

    -Pack-Spend some money and get the best you can afford. You will probably need greater than 2,500cui, but not larger than 4,000. Look at your local outdoor stores, find what fits you, and then go to on-line stores like Campmor, Sierra Trading Post, Altrec, and REI Outlet to find similar models for cheaper prices. You do not want this pack to break on your way home, so I don't, or wouldn't, skimp here.

    -Berretta-I would swap this out for another 1911, a 2nd pistol in 45ACP, or better yet, to save some weight, extra mags for your primary 1911. You get the same caliber which means that you only have to stock one type of ammo.

    -Long arm-Only if it can be easily broken down to fit in your pack. I would look at this as a way to gather food before thinking of it as a weapon. Your idea of a shotgun is both, but it is another form of ammo that takes up space in your pack. A .22lr is lighter, and while it is another round that you have to stock, you can carry a lot of it vs. 12 gauge.

    -Food-Augment your powerbar supply with enough Mountain House meals that you could eat 2 per day for 6 days. They are light, pack down small, and taste pretty good. They also could be stored for a good while, although in a hot car that time is probably shortened. May also want to consider some comfort items like hard candy or coffee/tea. Makes you feel better while you sort yourself out.

    -Water-Up your tablet count to last for at least 6 days. I would also consider a water filter and a way to haul it, be it a Camelbak type bladder or a couple of Nalgenes. You can watch the sites listed above for deals on both. You will need to both filter and chemically treat the water if you are going to be completely safe. I'm sure that you can find water sources on the way home, but you will need to haul some with you so that you can both eat, and arrive without being dehydrated.

    -Stove/Cookset-Doesn't have to be big or expensive, some can even be made from scratch (goggle soda can stove, alcohol stove, ect.). What you need is a stove, a pot to boil water in, a cup, and a spoon. The pot and cup can be the same thing if you need to save spave. Again, watch the sites listed above for deals.

    -Clothing-I would include some long underwear, a hat and some gloves, for this time of year. These of course can be rotated out seasonally. I would also include some extra sox and a bandana or 2.

    -Poncho/Blanket-Both of these items can be replaced with a good, high quality space blanket. Not the cheap aluminum models available at the dollar store, but rather this one http://www.actiongear.com/cgi-bin/t...x=space blanket&backto=/agcatalog/results.tam. If you are looking to use the poncho as rain gear, then just replace the blanket.

    -Rest of the list-Looks good! I would add extra batteries, a multitool, and maybe a saw or hatchet, but that is it. Remeber, slim and light!

    Hope this helps,

  18. Seacowboys

    Seacowboys Senior Member Founding Member

    I was in Trinidad when the planes crashed into the World Trade Center towers. All international flights into the U.S. were suspended and I was stranded a thousand miles from my family and resources for an indefinate period of time (it was late December before I was able to get home). There was nearly a month that passed before I could even get a phone-call back home. The last call I recieved from home was between plane crashes and got cut-off in mid-conversation just after my wife told me that our country was under attack. They still thought it was missles at the time. Since phone lines were out, credit cards didn't work. The local concensus was that Wall-street would collaspe and the dollar would be worthless; this negated the value of the little cash we had on hand. Supplies were minimal at best. It made an interesting set of parameters for survival in the midst of a foreign community that was less than benevolent.
  19. Clyde

    Clyde Jet Set Tourer Administrator Founding Member

    I just got this stove www.jetboil.com I thought it was pretty expensive, but it is small, light, and can boil 2 cups of water in 2 minutes. Quick/down/dirty/small and I like it.
  20. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    I've discussed the bridge/rivers situation with phishi before. I'd tend to think that if the situation was bad enough, forget the bridges.

    Your bag looks really good to me. I'd just be afraid of being stranded on one side with your family on the other. Unless your friends with boats/planes were available. I'd want to talk through that plan with a few of them so they are also planning on it.
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