Bugging In: Best Tips From Experienced Preppers

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This article will learn about the ultimate tips from expert preppers.

Before we dive in, you have to determine what you’re planning for before preparing.

Are you preparing for one person? Will you go with a partner or your children? Do you plan to bring your extended families, such as aging parents or siblings, and their families? Do you have any pets with you?

Consider doing a certain level of analysis and thinking ahead as the first essential step. The number of people bugging in with you and their capabilities will significantly affect the preparation phase. 

Some members of your bugging-in group may be less physically capable than others. They could be more vulnerable, such as a baby or young child or an elderly or physically challenged family member. 

The way you take note of people’s ages, abilities, and needs is a good idea. It can even save lives.

It’s also crucial to know the location and what kinds of catastrophes or disasters you might face. Everyone can, of course, prepare for a pandemic or a nuclear attack. 

However, if the place is prone to earthquakes, hurricanes, or ice storms, you should equip for those situations as much as you can. Thus, a good amount of reading and research about the location is another essential tip you can do.

Where you stay will be a factor in pandemics, nuclear warfare, and other major catastrophes. Are you fortunate enough to reside in or near a large city or military base? 

Perhaps you live in an area susceptible to nuclear fallout. You may also reside in a place where you can easily bug out if necessary.

It’s vital to think about these points. You may not know the exact details, but it’s best to know enough before suffering the consequence of being underprepared. And then, you can think of getting started on how you’ll prepare for bugging in.

Let’s jump right in!

Food

food

Whether you’re bugging in or bugging out, food and water are frequently the first items that come to mind while planning. And it’s not without cause. When bugging in, you don’t have to bother about shelters, and that’s the only factor that may make food and water more essential.

First, you should have at least two weeks’ worth of your typical meals. These are the kinds of food that your family consumes daily.

Next, you need to prepare food that will last at least six months to a year and has a storage life of 25-30 years. MREs, freeze-dried food, and other similarly packed items are examples. Costco Survival Food, Legacy (no MSG, no GMOs), and Wise Company are the best-known brands for these kinds of food.

You have to know that this food stock won’t last for long. Bear in mind to bring food that you can also grow like sprout seeds. That’s because you’ll never know when you’ll run out of nothing except the food you’ve saved. 

You can’t easily have fresh food to eat that your body needs. Mustard seeds, sunflower seeds, and lentils, for example, need little water and no sunshine to sprout, and the sprouts are nutrient-dense.

survival seed bank

Planting seeds are essential in the long term. These are not sprouting seeds but seeds you can plant in the ground. 

If the calamity lasts many months or years, this is the long-term remedy. Consider it your seed bank. With this, make sure the seeds are easy-to-grow heritage kinds: kale, spinach, radishes, carrots, broccoli, garlic, tomatoes, peppers, peas, and beans, to name a few.

If you or if you’re with someone who can take care of livestock, you can also consider including chickens for laying eggs and meat, a goat that produces milk, pigs, cows, only if you have the space one or two.

The objective is to stockpile enough food to last for short, long, and extremely long periods.

When you’re in a survival scenario, keep in mind that your calorie requirements will undoubtedly increase since you’ll be performing a lot of physical activity to stay alive. Furthermore, you will be under a great deal of pressure. 

Let’s say you’ll be out in the wild for 30 days, then that means women would need 60,000 calories and 75,000 calories for men.

Assuming you’re solely eating rice for the sake of simplicity. A 12-cup serving of rice has 300 calories. A pound of rice has five 12 cup servings or 1,500 calories. For the next 30 days, a woman has to consume 40 pounds of rice and 50 pounds if you are a man.

rice

I know rice alone is insufficient for you to survive. However, the objective of this example is to provide you with a solid concept of how to figure out the amount of food you’ll need depending on the number of calories you’ll require each day.

Calculate how much of each sort of food you’ll need depending on your calorie needs once you’ve chosen the foods you wish to store.

Finally, you must be ready to cook whatever food you have. Because there’s a risk, you won’t have power, and your stove will be useless. 

You’ll need a backup plan in this situation. You can look up several options for DIY heaters that are available to create heat for survival cooking and keep you warm in cold weather.

Water

water

Water is more vital than food. Let’s establish that. You can go for far longer without food than you can go without water. However, just as with food, you must ensure you have covered your short- and long-term water needs.

First of all, make sure you have bottled water on hand so you can at least survive if we’re speaking on a short-term basis. The general guideline is that each individual should drink 1 gallon or 4 liters of water every day. But this is a bare minimum. 

When people drink it, cook with it, and wash with it, you’d be shocked how rapidly it vanishes.

If we’re talking about a six-month long-term scenario, then make sure you have at least two weeks’ supply of water stashed away. Know that if the situation is long-term, you’ll need a long-term water solution, just as you’ll need a long-term food solution. 

With this, you will need the use of a water collection device. 

Collecting rainwater is, of course, the ideal option. Many options are available, some of which are more expensive than others. But you can consider the most affordable solutions first. 

collecting water

It’s a big win if you have a pool or pond in your location. If you do, all you have to worry about is an excellent, dependable water filter. In this way, you can quickly turn water into something safe to drink and won’t make you sick.

Having 5-gallon buckets around can be helpful for water storage. These may be gathered over time and filled with tap water or rainwater. 

Water barrels are the next best thing if these buckets aren’t an option. These can collect rainwater on your property. To ensure that you’ll have water that’s safe to drink, purchase or look for 55-gallon food-grade barrels.

A rainwater cistern is a more extensive collection container for rainfall. You may put it on top of or under the ground. It is the most costly choice, mainly if it’s below the ground. If it’s underground, though, it’s hidden, so no one will know you have it.

not drinkable

Whatever technique you’ll use to collect rainwater, there is always a chance that the water you’ve harvested isn’t drinkable. 

Before drinking it, you must filter the water due to real dirt and debris, insects, and bird droppings. Pool shock or water filtration systems are a couple of ways to filter water.

The water will be purified and drinkable when you choose to use pool shock. Just be sure you filter the water to remove any dirt or particles before drinking it.

On the other hand, Berkey is a well-known brand of water filtering systems.

The water filter they make has a complete water purification and filtration system that eliminates germs and viruses that cause disease. This feature is what you would need in a filtration system as it eliminates 99.99 percent of microorganisms in the water.

Waste and Sanitation

waste and sanitation

You will produce garbage when you are comfy in your well-stocked house. That means having both solid trash from the kitchen and human waste. Let’s start with the junk from the kitchen.

Preparing meals anywhere will inevitably result in having trash. Before the garbage pile-up or spreads an unpleasant smell, or worse, attract stray animals, you have to remove the rubbish right away. And that begins the moment you open your cans or packages of food.

You’ll almost certainly have to deal with food waste as well. There will be no waste collection in a long-term catastrophe, and if you’re throwing out bags of rubbish and buckets of compost, it won’t take long for others to notice you have food.

To keep your trash hidden as much as possible, try not to have leftover food. You shouldn’t have leftovers anyway, as you shouldn’t be throwing away excess or unfinished food. Try to conserve and reserve for later.

Next, don’t throw away any packaging if you can. Using cans for cooking pots, glass jars as drinking glasses, and crumpled paper as toilet paper are all examples of this kind of resource conservation. It is better to reduce waste by reusing it whenever you can.

Another tip, if possible, you can try burying your waste. It will draw unwelcome attention if you set it on fire as well.

The disposal of human waste is likewise a significant concern. If the water is still flowing, flush the toilet with a pail of water rather than your potable water.

portable toilet

However, there is no flush toilet without running water, rapidly building up waste. You can deal with human waste in a variety of ways.

You can use a bucket and a scoop to collect cat litter. Every time you use the bucket, you can put a litter scoop to cover it. Otherwise, you may also take any 5-gallon bucket and put a cover on it to make a toilet seat.

Another way you can deal with human waste is by using portable toilets. It comes in a variety of sizes and styles. They usually include a toilet seat and some form of a trash can. You can also use kitty litter or purchase a bio gel bag to line the toilet and capture the waste.

It’s important to remember that you dispose of the trash from a portable toilet. The ideal method is to bury it far away from your garden and any pure water supply.

If you have enough resources and enough room, you can always dig a hole in your place and construct an outhouse. To avoid contamination, make sure the outhouse is also far enough away from the house, gardens, and water supplies.

Power

power

People can survive without electricity, but honestly, who wants to? 

With all the fancy gadgets out in the market these days, people have become even more dependent on electricity. It’s understandable as it provides light, warmth, heats our food, and entertainment.

Electricity and bugging in can coexist. But before we go too deep, you should know right away that you need to be highly cautious when dealing with power and bugging in.

If you decide to use a gas generator to create energy, you may risk attracting unwelcome attention. Generators are loud, and if you’re operating one, everyone will hear it.

Instead of generators, you can look into using solar panels to power your house in case of a power outage or if there’s just no choice but to go off-grid. You can also consider investing in a solar-powered generator that doesn’t make any noise, and then you can build a charging station with it. 

Aside from solar power, geothermal power generation is also an option. At the absolute least, a tiny portable solar charger to power individual gadgets and batteries is good to have.

Light and Heat

light and heat

Even when bugging in, everyone likes to have light in the dark. If the power’s out, you’ll need to find other ways to create light. You can use some light in your house if you have the resource to produce power.

Sometimes producing power isn’t possible, and it’s always great to prepare for the worst-case scenario. Luckily, alternatives such as battery-operated camp lights, oil or kerosene lanterns, candles, flashlights, or headlamps are available and easily purchased.

If your location has winter seasons that last for most of the year, having enough lit room isn’t your only concern anymore. Now, keeping yourself warm trumps light in this scenario. You don’t want to be well-prepared in every other way to freeze all winter.

To keep the warmth, you can think of building a fireplace or a woodstove.

You may not always find a fireplace in many houses, and it may not be the most effective kind of heat; it will still keep you warm enough to get through the winter.

Suppose you’re thinking of going the woodstove route; you should know that you should avoid pellet stoves as they do not burn wood. You won’t burn anything if calamity hits and you run out of pellet fuel. However, with wood stoves, there will always be something to burn. Also, wood stoves provide a lot of heat and can function as a cooking appliance.

If you don’t have access to a fireplace or a woodstove, invest in a portable heater that can run on kerosene or propane. Whatever option you select, be sure you have enough gasoline on hand.

Communication

communication

One of the most critical concerns is communication when bugging in. Even if you are comfortable in your own house, it’s needless to say that you still need to know what is going on in the world.

If there is still power, you should keep a watchful eye on local and regional news. Even if electricity isn’t accessible, radio can transmit emergency broadcasts. Make sure you have a hand-crank or solar-powered radio among your emergency supplies.

You can handle short-range communication between individuals of your group using walkie-talkies. 

Get a HAM radio to connect with other people within the range too. However, you have to get a HAM radio license to send and receive communications as soon as possible. Even without a permit, you may still listen in and learn what’s going on.

Having a backup is always good. The same goes with having a secondary method of communication. Your group can split ways even if you’re bugging in. 

You can consider having pre-determined strategic areas where you can leave messages for each other. It might also contain a set of codes that you can use to communicate in a manner that others won’t be able to decipher.

Security

security

When it comes to bugging in, security is crucial as well. If a tragedy continues for an extended time, you will be required to defend your home. Let’s be honest. An ordinary house isn’t always secure.

Prepare your house for bugging in by making everything ready ahead of time. There are some ways to make your home more secure.

You can start by making sure your place does not look like an obvious target. It’s unlikely that people will approach you if it seems battered or like you have nothing inside that’s worth anything.

Next, you can display a Beware of Dog sign even if you don’t have a dog. This one may seem silly, but it works.

You can also use security lights and motion detectors if you can afford them. Or clear a 100-meter radius around your house of any plants. And another way to prevent outsiders from accessing your ground is by putting up a fence, a wall, or shrubs around the perimeter.

Also, you can think of creating paths to lead visitors to the areas you want them to go to if they come into your property. Make it challenging to get anyplace other than those paths by strategically placing plants and other impediments. 

Make sure there are places to hide so you can move around your property without being observed.

hazardous waste bags

Also, keep a supply of hazardous waste bags on hand. Fill a few of them with old clothing and leave them on your front porch, which will be more effective if there’s a pandemic. Except for the neediest, this will discourage people from coming into your area.

Aside from gearing up the exterior of your location, you also need to prepare the inside of your house. You should have your guns license in hand, as well as rifles and ammo. Other weapons, such as a bow or crossbow, pepper spray, and a stun baton, are also good to have. Apart from that, you need to do a few more extra strategies.

You can consider installing deadbolts on all doors. It’s even better to have steel or solid wood for the front door and the doorframes. Make it a habit to check to see whether all windows are locked. 

If you can have plexiglass, steel bars, and strong locks, it would help to add more security. Make sure you have plywood on hand if you need to board up your windows. Also, always maintain a clear line of sight so that you can keep an eye on your home and protect it if needed.

There should be shared storage for supplies, food, and drink. But hide a few caches in your home, such as behind a fake wall. Somewhere intruders won’t discover your stored food supplies. 

This way, you ensure that they won’t get everything if someone manages to force their way in and grab whatever you have.

Lastly, you can create a safe space in your home. This space is an area where you can remain safe for a lengthy amount of time.

Here’s a quick video that somehow summarizes everything that we’ve covered.

Final Words

No matter how well-prepared you are for bugging in, you must also be ready to bug out. The situation in a city center might swiftly worsen. Lawlessness and gangs might emerge, or pandemics and cloudy conditions can overtake the city, making it safer to leave.

You never know when you’ll be swamped and unable to protect your remote property, even if you’re bugging in. As a result, you should constantly be ready to depart at a moment’s notice.

Here are some other articles to better equip yourself for such survival situations:

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1 thought on “Bugging In: Best Tips From Experienced Preppers”

  1. What a full-packed article! I particularly liked the tips on managing waste. That’s something anyone could follow even if they’re not bugging in. Thanks for this! More power to Defiel!

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