Why You Might Be FORCED to Bug Out Even If Your Plan Is Bugging In

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Author of Be Ready for Anything and Bloom Where You’re Planted online course

If you’re like me, Plan A is hunkering down and waiting out a disaster or bad situation. You want to be home where you’re comfortable, where you know the territory, where all your supplies are stored. The last thing in the world you want to do is to take off and leave behind your gardens, maybe some livestock, and your huge stash of ammo.

But in the immortal words of the Rolling Stones, you can’t always get what you want.

Sometimes the situation is so dire and so sudden that you have no choice but to drop everything and run.

And if you don’t have an evacuation plan, it’s high time you made one. My new 80-page PDF, The Bug Out Book, can help.

Why would you need to evacuate?

Even the most dedicated bugger-inner and hunker-downer will have to admit there are a few situations in which leaving is the only answer.

Wildfires, mudslides, chemical spills, and industrial accidents are all reasons you might have to flee your home and often, without much in the way of warning.

Any disaster that is likely to cause complete destruction, pollutes the air with something toxic, or has the potential to kill anyone in the area means that, whether you like it or not, you’ll need to evacuate.

  • Floods
  • Hazardous substances
  • Fires
  • Nuclear accidents
  • Hurricanes
  • Public safety threat (a mysterious package that could contain a bomb)
  • Tsunamis
  • Terrorism
  • Volcano
  • War
  • Riots

Generally, some official will show up at your door and demand you and your whole family leave within a few minutes. Sometimes you’ll be told by a message to your phone. If a situation is this serious, it could be a death sentence to you and the ones you love to stay home.

Make a plan ahead of time so you can get out fast.

What do you need to do in times like this?

In these kinds of situations, you’ll need to get out of Dodge in minutes. You will need to already have a plan in place for the following:

  • Where you’re going to go
  • How you are going to get there
  • What you’re bringing with you
  • How to get family members with special needs away with you
  • What your pets will need to evacuate safely
  • Which important documents you need
  • How to keep your loved ones safe and as comfortable as possible
  • What to do if you have no money and you can’t afford to evacuate

This isn’t a plan you can develop at the drop of the hat when you’ve got 5 minutes to get out. You should have these things figured out ahead of time. It’s also going to be helpful to know how to deal with what you might be coming back to when you return.

The point here is not that you can’t ever hunker down. The point is that some situations are so extreme you may have no other choice than to leave your home. Stubbornly clinging to a bad idea (or an idea that is bad for the current situation) is the most certain way for you and your family to die. Adaptability is the key to survival.

What’s in The Bug Out Book?

Here’s what the book discusses:

  1. Why would you need to bug out?
  2. What to do well before you ever need to evacuate
  3. Where will you go?
  4. How will you get to your destination?
  5. Should you stay or should you go?
  6. When should you go?
  7. What to do if you have a few days to get ready
  8. What to do if you have a couple of hours to get ready
  9. What to do if you have a couple of minutes to get ready
  10. Evacuating with pets
  11. Evacuating a homestead
  12. What if you miss your opportunity to evacuate?
  13. What if you can’t afford to evacuate?
  14. What you should know about going to a shelter
  15. Going home
  16. Replacing documents after a disaster

Use this book to help create a plan for any scenario. You may have reasons that bugging out feels “impossible” for you. Maybe you suffer from a disability or you have a family member who isn’t very mobile.

The truth is, you can evacuate in nearly any situation. This book will give you some things to think about so you aren’t suddenly trying to figure it out when the police are banging at the door telling you that a disaster is headed your way and you have to leave right now.

Wouldn’t you rather figure this stuff out in advance? Maybe even practice it?

Grab your PDF today.

Have you ever had to evacuate?

Did you ever have to evacuate? What was the emergency? Please share your bug out stories in the comments below.


Daisy Luther

Daisy Luther

Daisy Luther is a coffee-swigging, globe-trotting blogger. She is the founder and publisher of three websites.  1) The Organic Prepper, which is about current events, preparedness, self-reliance, and the pursuit of liberty on her website, 2)  The Frugalite, a website with thrifty tips and solutions to help people get a handle on their personal finances without feeling deprived, and 3) PreppersDailyNews.com, an aggregate site where you can find links to all the most important news for those who wish to be prepared. She is widely republished across alternative media and  Daisy is the best-selling author of 5 traditionally published books and runs a small digital publishing company with PDF guides, printables, and courses. You can find her on FacebookPinterest, Gab, MeWe, Parler, Instagram, and Twitter.

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  • And then theres all the other contingencies, such as:

    What if:

    The one you love lets you know (in no uncertain terms) they don’t feel the same in return.

    Your job is only as secure as your Company id allowing you to report for another days work.

    You are relentlessly pursued by gold-digging exes & / or the DC-incentivised ‘legal’ ‘system’ they have employed to asset-strip your life & very existance for their personal fun & profit, all at YOUR expense.


    ‘Life’ happens as one is busily planning for contingencies that may or may not happen.

    Inflation, crappy paying jobs (if one is even able to attain one), taxation & other forms of society & guvtheft gut your best attempt @ trying to even minimally provision against disaster.

    .. ‘Murika in the 21st Century.


  • I have the greatest respect for Selco and admiration for him surviving what can only be described as a horrific experience. That having been said, I have to admit that “planning” for a disaster is somewhat of a fool’s errand. The very nature of a disaster is its unpredictability…especially when the human factor is involved.

    Yes…I have done my prepping on an “as can” basis. Firearms, ammo, survival tools, food, generator, cordage, clothing etc. But beyond that, I’ve always felt the best asset to possess in a crisis is a logical mind and a calm demeanor. The ability to stay focused when crap is blowing up all around you. I developed mine serving 4 years on the flight deck of an aircraft carrier, where one wrong step or decision could translate to instant death or disfigurement. It isn’t something you can buy in a store. It must be learned by subjecting yourself to dangerous situations where there are no second chances.

    This changes the character of the person exposed to such an experience indelibly. What’s more, you learn to identify others with these same traits almost on sight. Why? Because they are potential threats. They can also be potential assets and allies. Knowing the difference could mean the difference between life and death.

    Thank you, Daisy, for giving Selco a platform to share his wisdom.

  • When your banner covers half the page, and makes it hard to read the article. Just saying,

  • The first step in making any emergency plan, including “bugging out” is to complete a risk assessment. Identify the risks YOU may have and then prioritize them. Are each likely to happen or not likely to happen. Should any of them occur, what would be the likely impact to you. Not everyone is exposed to the calamities listed in the article. I’m not.

    The risk thats highest priority for me is a severe weather event. Would I need to bug out? Not likely.

    • Considering the current state of Political and Racial tension in this nation, you need to reassess that.
      What would you do if what is happening in Portland ( times 1k) came into your neighborhood?
      Or what if an ISIS type terror group took control of your city and started targeting all non believers.
      Far fetched, maybe, but they are possibilities. Especially if city and state secession movements start gaining traction.
      Or if we finally got enough states to ratify a Constitution convention event. What changes or rights they might add or take away is anyone’s guess.
      Any one of the above might trigger a Civil War.
      So you need to reconsider your priorities.

  • Looking at your list of possible reasons to bog out, war and riots are the only ones that stick out for my present local region. And I expect war.

    I’m responsible for an elderly lady, mentally all there but with a hopelessly pollyannish attitude that she’s had since she was young. So I have to hide preps from her while living with her. Because of her age and condition, plan A is to bug in. Plan B hopefully I won’t have to execute.

    There’s a nearby air force base that’s only lightly defended from an attack on the ground. I have to hope that the enemy will plan on taking over the base from a surprise attack on the ground instead of just nuking it. It has assets that would be useful to an invading enemy, namely many transport aircraft.

    If we have to bug out, I’ve already chosen the route we’ll take and to where we’ll go. We’ll have to go by car because we’re talking hundreds of miles. We won’t take the shortest, most direct route because that route is most likely to be blockaded. I have a list of the most important things to bring with us. But hopefully I won’t have to bug out.

    The future is unpredictable, and all plans and preps may go for nought. But we need to plan and prep so that we have options to fall back on.

  • There is a class of bug-outs that’s not usually addressed in bug-out articles. That’s when for whatever reason you may be forced to leave your home behind forever. Some possible reasons might include:

    A tornado strike that wiped out your house, and you were behind on paying your home insurance.

    A rising flood in an allegedly 500-year flood plain that just happened to surprise you — and the flood insurance company you thought you didn’t need a relationship with.

    A fire in your home that heated up a single 20 pound propane bottle that exploded and demolished the house, and your home insurance contract had a gotcha provision that said they’re not liable to pay for your damages since you didn’t store that propane at least 30 feet away from your house.

    Some other kind of natural disaster that legitimately wiped out enough of your house that insurance should have legitimately covered your damage, but unknown to you, your insurance policy was with a company with a disgusting history of randomly stiffing honest and paid-up policy-holders all the way through expensive court appeals. Many people don’t have the financial resources, after such damage, to pursue such legal appeals through to an uncertain conclusion.

    You might live in a peaceful city where unbeknownst to you, the city adopted a so-called “International Property Maintenance Code” that claims to legalize fines for even the most minor of code violations, like overly tall grass above 10 or 12 inches or vines growing up through chain link fences, etc, of up to $2100 per day per cited offense, if you don’t fix the problem within a 10-day grace period. And even then, that code gives your local Code Enforcement bounty hunters the authority to put you on a zero-recourse 12 month probation period during which if they ever catch you committing a previously cited offense, they can instantly on-the-spot slap you with an “up-to” $2100 fine PER DAY PER CITED OFFENSE until you fix the problem. If you’re out of town, or have a hospital stay, or simply return home after dark to find such a citation on your doorknob where you can’t possibly fix the problem until the next day — and that’s already 2 x $2100 for just one type of previously cited offense. With any multiple types, you’re very quickly running in real money extortion — way above what courts typically fine for life-threatening offenses like DWI. There is a 9-0 US Supreme Court decision this last February of 2019 that ruled via the 8th Amendment against such abusive and excessive fines or punishments — by levels of government well below the federal level, including cities, but if you can’t fund the court fight, or the Institute for Justice has too many such cases to take your case pro bono, city after city is now in the game of foreclosing on such houses where the owner can’t pay the outrageous fines — and auctioning such houses off for unconscionable mafia-style city profit.

    See these links about such an abusive case in Dunedin, Florida:



    You might even need to do the ultimate bug-out and move to another country in order to access vastly less expensive but effective healthcare methods that the Big Pharma-captured FDA has effectively outlawed in this country.

    The point of all these awful examples is that discussion is needed in advance of possible bug-outs where it may never be possible to return to your house.


  • Most of those should be considered before buying homestead and building accordingly.

    Can’t predict war or terrorism but you can be in low to no strategic value

    Bugging out is a very last resort for us a even war/ riot there are not enough locals that it would be a problem you could not deal with.

    It’s hard to find good property we looked for 5 years to find one by accident. You can find them but it takes work and some luck most of the best ones are a lifetime of work to never finish.

  • you forgot one important REASON to bug out even when I had planned to stay put….State/Local governments becoming intolerable…..gun laws to be exact…the supporting/coddling of the bad guys over law abiding citizens….CA. is getting to that point in the very near future…in some aspects,it already has happened!!

  • Evacuated Apr ’97. Red River flooded its banks to create “The Flood of the Century”. Left with the clothes on our back and moved basememt appliances upstairs. Our home was spared. Today we are better prepared with a larger family. Freeze dried stores and many tin soups on sale. Canning is a few days away. Cheers! D
    Velox Versutus Vigilans

  • I have been on a “30 min. standby fire evacuation notice “, several times over the years, and once on under an immediate evacuation order.
    That is: once they notify you, you may have only 30 minutes or less, to bug out of the area or be overrun by the fire.
    You would be surprised at how much stuff you would have to leave behind.
    How long it take to pack a vehicle if you are not prepped to bug out, ( which in those years, I was not).
    So you need a plan. One that you can do in thirty minutes or less.
    Know what you consider critical items to take and what is not and where they are at so you can quickly gather them and load up.
    I suggest you do a trial run or two, you might be surprised how ill-prepared you really are.

  • Husband is getting fragile. Can’t walk very far without passing out, so on foot evacuation is out of the question. As for vehicles I have an older motor home and a beat up small truck. Motor home is stocked for company. I renew food items when needed. That’s a first choice. 2nd is the little truck with camping gear et and food. Truck has an inverter and 2nd battery attached to a solar charger. 5 packed back packs. 1 medical from prescriptions to surgical. 2 with food in heavy mylar packaging that can actually warm in the sun on the dashboard. 3 with dry mixes, and small cook pot. 4 hunting, fishing, and snares. 5 clothing for each and warm throws and survival blankets et. All are in a homemade storage bench by the front door along with fishing poles, slingshot, 2 long bows and arrows, an 80 lb crossbow and bolts, and more. Dog harness and leash by door. Practice has it down to 5 minutes to load and go. New tackle box ready to set up fits there as well. Necessary copies of papers in a grab and go case. Originals elsewhere in a safe.
    Extra solar panels in process of being set up for motor home and truck campershell. Hope to hunker down at home when SHTF but ready to evacuate if necessary. On foot won’t happen while spouse lives. If I go on foot someday 2 repacked bags on a simple luggage cart would be it. Upper back old injuries preclude carrying much on my back. If I can go west to a friend 45 miles away I’d take my bicycle. To the mountain drive along the edge to a private place. To a son in the city only way is interstate most of the way. Too rugged to go cross country. To a friend in another state I’d hope to drive motorhome and pull truck on a flatbed trailer.
    Still set up to really stay home here in a rural place. Gardening, Canning, Critters, and stored things make this the best place to be. Fire isn’t likely on the desert. Flooding on a desert hillside isn’t likely either. Man-made danger more likely but not really likely. Good wells. One on power. One set up manual. Widowed friend and little grandchildren on my property. Her kids, my kids, and some grandchildren are more likely to come here. All hard workers. My kids know survival skills. I’m planting wild foods and medicines here and on a private nearby place. Water there flowing or shallow to reach.
    Making pictured notebooks of what I plant and whats native here. Adult and teens kids can learn from those if needed. Book will have info. Foods- photos, seasons, how to collect, prepare, even some recipes. Medicines- how to gather, seasons, preparation, uses, et. Needing to have a stock of cheap vodka for meds. Glycerine instead of alcohol for small children.
    Sons are all ex military. They keep reminding me to have bug out bags packed and ready. Being on the same page makes it easier.

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