Should I Stay or Should I Go

Posted: February 19, 2012 by Sarge in Evacuation, Preparation
Tags: , , , ,

How am I supposed to decide if I need to bug out, or stay put and settle in?  I had no idea how to answer the question, so I did what I do at work all day anyway.  I made Excel spreadsheets.  Why the hell not.  First, I built a spreadsheet that calculates a value for bugging out versus a value for staying put.  My idea was that the higher value would be the right choice.  I used things that I thought might affect the decision, dealing with preparation, availability of resources, etc.  I then averaged them for two groups, the stay and the bug out.  I then divided them by another factor, based on relative closeness to a major population center, and number of people in that population center.  Lets be honest, cities are going to be absolute mayhem when SHTF (Think post Katrina New Orleans).  I filled out the spreadsheet for my values, and this is what I came up with.

Then, just toying around, I built a table, creating a score for distance vs. population, where a higher score is achieved the further you are from a city, and the smaller that city is.  I then created two graphs to compare the effects of changing either distance or population changes.  Check it out.

There is no science invovled in either of these.  I don’t give a shit.  If you want a copy of either to toy around with, or if you have suggestions on how I could improve either, shoot me an email at



  1. David says:

    First…I LOVE this! It touches on my survival urges and feeds my desire for putting things into an Excel program. Needs some tweaks but really really cool!

    • Sarge says:

      David, I would love some input. This was a first attempt, and I’d like to expand it and make it more realistic. Suggestions?

  2. David says:

    I think the only things I would change would be maybe clearing some things up with the descriptions for points on a few things and maybe adding a few categories.

    For example one thing that popped out at me was the “Size of useable property”. It starts at 1 for an apartment and goes to 10 for a 1000 acre farm with 5 being just one acre. Through research I’ve found that 1 acre of land is enough land to feed a family of 4 on a sustenance level but it has to be a full acre of arable land and that would leave no room for rotation or development of anything else. Like…I’d be mostly ok (at a 5) if I had a 1 acre back yard. When you actually wouldn’t…you would need at least 2 or 3 plus irrigation availability which wouldn’t have to be totally potable water. Just my notion but a farm more than a few hundred acres would start to become a negative…you can’t defend it, it’s too much to take care of and you need more people…which means you have to grow more food and need more water. See what I mean? You can’t have too small but you can’t have too big either. I think I’d figure out a scale in there too if people know what to do with their land…say 1-10 rating on how much they’ve gardened before. Say like 1 is can’t keep house plants alive and 10 is grew up farming. You can have a guy with the perfect yard and access to a crap load of seeds that couldn’t grow a garden if he had to but he’s just certain in SHTF he could grow all his food.

    I think I’d touch on the number of people too. A single person working a medium sized farm (30 acres) would have a really hard time making it by themselves and could possibly have to consider BO because they couldn’t even realistically farm AND defend it by themselves. Likewise, I’d consider the age of people…a couple or group with toddlers might want to reconsider their living arrangements…it’s hard to take kids along to a BOL but kids would also be a burden bugging in without enough people to work. Say a family of four (two parents and two kids) would have different ideas if both kids were say under 5 and had to be watched all day sucking mom’s availability away into watching kids while Dad farmed or hunted as opposed to those same kids being old enough to watch themselves or pitch in. I don’t know how you would work that into numbers though. You could maybe add points for everyone over the age of 10 who’s in perfect health and subtract points for anyone under 10 (or handicapped kids) or those over say 65-70.

    I think the only other thing I wondered about was defend-ability of your BIL that might tip your numbers a little. If you’re in the suburbs with a few acres and seeds and water and your home is off the road and sitting up on a hill that no one could see easily, it would sure change your numbers compared to that same house and acreage sitting in the middle of a subdivision even if it’s way outside the city. Like wise, a really nice farm with land, water, plentiful hunting land with wood and you all stocked up would be totally undependable if you’re sitting within viewing shot from an interstate that loads of refugees would be coming up. Maybe it’s a scale of access of your BIL and/or see-ability. It brings to mind our drives up to Tennessee from Louisiana and all the farms we pass. It’s like…they would make GREAT self-reliant places and would seem like it would be great to bug in there but in a SHTF situation people will be walking by and see those fields growing and head right for it.

    I hope I haven’t been too critical because I do really love this idea and it’s made me think about all this. I think you’ve made a great start and this is sure the first time I’ve seen anything remotely like this. Once you get it perfected you need to take it live on a certain website 😛

    • Sarge says:

      I am excited by your input. I will be investing more time into this, and create a more realistic algorithm. Being a math nerd, I love approaching a problem in this way, and outside input is a huge help.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s