Bug out location

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Your BOL, or bug-out location, is the place which you will go to when you bug-out or bug-in. If you are bugging-in then, it is your own home; if you are bugging-out it could potentially be anywhere in the world. Great consideration should be given to your bug-out location as it needs to have, or be able to provide, all that you will need for the duration of an emergency, or perhaps, even the rest of your life the event of a major disaster.


Considerations based upon the type of Emergency

  • Personal or Family Emergency - Losing you home does not mean loss of job or even the rest of the property itself. Following a burglary, fire, flood or other local disaster you and your family may choose to stay in a local motel, shelter or even with relatives.
  • Wide Area Emergency - The larger the area affected the further away you and your family will need to travel for safety. One plan is to arrange ahead of the time (during the planning stage) where to go and stay. The trip itself has to be planned for and supplies cached, for instance, if fuel stations are not available for the trip or if prices for fuel are hiked up during a disaster by profiteers then a stockpile of fuel for your bug-out vehicle is advisable.

Considerations for the Shelter and Property

There is an innumerable quantity of factors that you will have to consider when choosing or creating a BOL. This is a list of some common ones.

  • Concealment - How visible is your BOL? The nature of this concealment could be either social or environmental. If your BOL is in a rural area then you may want to consider building it in a location and way that it is difficult to see from the road or by searching eyes. If you build in a suburb, it would likely behoove you to have a house that at least appears similar to your neighbors.
  • Fire - Resistance to fire as well as your fire exit strategy are both critical. The materials used to build your house will be the largest factor in determining how flammable your house is, the more wood the more vulnerable you will be. You should also ensure that you have easily accessible exits and a strategy on how to use those exist in the event of a fire.
  • Power - Electrical and gas power, while not critical to survival, make things much easier on the person living in a home. If you want to ensure that you will continue to have these utilities then you should consider either a generator or alternative power, and perhaps also a propane tank.
  • Resistance to Forced Entry - The ability to keep unwanted individuals outside is perhaps the most important factor in establishing a BOL. Be they burglars, rioters, animals, the greatest threat against you and your family will always be those looking to take by force the resources you have accumulated. The materials used in building your BOL will go a long way towards making your BOL as impervious as possible, using concrete and steel will make your walls able to withstand far greater attacks than wood and drywall (see Skousen Wall[1] [2]. The quality of your doors and windows should also be given some thought, a fortress with cheap door locks is no harder to penetrate than a shack. Be sure to install door reinforcements -- the two most popular are the Armor Concepts EZ Armor Reinforcing Kit or the Safe Homes International Strikemaster II Pro Door Reinforcer combined with The Club Model 20 Door Club installed at the base of the door threshold.
  • Surveillance - Surveillance is an often over-looked factor in building a good BOL. For a few hundred dollars worth of IP Cameras and a small home network you will provide yourself with the ability to visually and even audibly monitor your home and property from inside or anywhere else in the world. Proper placement of windows and security lights will also help you to gain the advantage when watching what is going on at your BOL.
  • Water - In addition to storing water, you will also want to consider a reliable source of water such as a natural spring, surface water, a well, or a rain catchment system. Any or all of these can be built if they do not already exist.
  • Food - You will want to make sure that you have plenty of food as well as the ability to grow food and perhaps even good hunting if you are so inclined.

Type of Home Construction

The type of home you choose to buy or build will effect all of the factors of establishing a good BOL. There are many different types of home, but here are a few you will likely consider.

  • Earth-Sheltered - Earth-Sheltered, e/s, homes are usually concrete houses buried on as many 3 sides and the roof. They are extremely energy efficient, resistance to fire, radiation, penetration, and gunfire. One of the most proven and reliable of these is the Monolithic Dome home as it doesn't require being buried in order to have these above qualities.[3] Monolithic domes are particularly proven to be bullet proof even to point blank fired 30-06 rifle rounds.[4] [5] They however are more difficult to style in a standard housing style, and might have some issues with radon, water penetration and flood resistance, and some counties and states do not approve of such structures.
  • Earthen Buildings - Earthen Buildings are buildings where the primary building material is earth. There are many versions of this, namely adobe, rammed-earth, cob, compressed earth blocks(CEB), and earth bag homes, among many others. These structures have most of the benefits of earth sheltered housing while maintaining a more standard appearance, and in the cases of some(rammed-earth) can be made to look similar to concrete. Their main weakness tends to be moisture, and they requiring sealing or treatment with either plasters, chemical sealants or natural sealants. Similar to Earth-Sheltered Housing, some of these can be difficult to get planning permission for.[6]
  • Insulated Concrete Form - Insulated Concrete Form, ICF, homes look exactly like a traditional home the outside, but are for more efficient due to superior insulation as well as being resistant to fire, penetration, and gunfire.
  • Stick-Frame - Stick-Frame or traditional houses are poor, but often unavoidable, choices for BOLs they are difficult to fortify, vulnerable to fire, bullets, forced entry, and just about any other threat you can think of.
  • Log - Log structures can be built with on site resources. [7] [8]


Defensive Landscaping

Defensive landscaping is an excellent way to help make your BOL more easily defended and harder to break into while you are not actively defending it. Defensive landscaping makes use of various plants, fences, and other landscaping features to create hardened perimeters and passive defenses.

See Also


  1. http://modernsurvivalblog.com/security/bullet-resistant-wall-construction accessed January 22, 2014
  2. https://amazon.com/Secure-Home-Joel-Skousen/dp/1568610556 accessed January 22, 2014
  3. https://duckduckgo.com/?q=site%3Athesurvivalpodcast.com+monolithic+dome
  4. http://www.monolithic.org/stories/bullet-test accessed January 22, 2014
  5. http://www.monolithic.org/stories/bullet-test/photos#1 accessed January 22, 2014
  6. http://www.rammedearthconstructions.com.au/index.php?mp_id=5
  7. http://www.traditionalmountaineering.org/images/Shelter-5.jpg
  8. http://www.amazon.com/How-Build-Furnish-Log-Cabin/dp/0020016700/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1390489814&sr=1-3&keywords=log+cabin

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