Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Yes, but what's it for?

Roseholme Cottage is in the Indianapolis neighborhood known as Broad Ripple, which consists of a business district containing bars and restaurants, vintage clothing shops, art galleries, organic produce joints, and hair salons, and a larger surrounding area of shady tree-lined streets with hopelessly twee little homes dating from the first part of the last century. Not too many blocks south, however, the boutiques and brewpubs are replaced with check cashing joints and seedy package stores, Volvos and Prii give way to primered clunkers and older domestic sedans on dub-deuces, and graffiti-ed plywood becomes more common than tastefully painted shutters as a window treatment. Should things get grim in the city, we'd be disturbingly close to the front lines.

Sure it's unlikely, but being old enough to remember riot police on the streets of Atlanta in April of 1992, having 30 rounds of Keep Off The Grass on hand makes a nice security blanket for me.

But as a piece of "bug out" gear, is a carbine really that useful? Frank James brings up some good points. You should go read them and ponder how a long gun fits into your Worst Case Scenario plans.


Bram said...

That depends were you plan to bug-to. If you are going in search of a refugee / re-education camp, no guns are needed. If you plan to head for the hills and avoid civilization until things sort themselves out, a rifle makes sense.

jimbob86 said...

It's nice to live in flyover country...

aczarnowski said...

Frank makes good points as usual. People thinking about BoBs should be thinking of this stuff too.

I plan on taking the rifle. I know where I'm going if leaving home is warranted, I can live under a tarp while walking there if I have to, and I'll damn well want that security blanket where I land for $deity knows how long I'll be there.

On a more blustery emotional front, if I need to leave it's bad enough that I won't give a frak what people think of the rifle. I'll be doing my best to avoid any imperial entanglements en route (Frank's refugee camp point), and my CCW permit legally allows open carry of whatever goes bang so even if I get stopped by what's left of real authorities I have a leg to stand on. If I get stopped by not real authorities, well, that's kinda what the rifle is for...

Ed Rasimus said...

It all is a matter of perspective you've got for the potential scenario. If yours is Red Dawn or survivalist, you do one thing and plan one way. Mine is of "end of life as we know it" in a society which has broken down (or a government is out of control and confiscatory) at that point, I'm into Alamo North mode. The scenario is a variant of the Zombieland one, but without the black humor or Twinkies.

aczarnowski said...

Forgot to mention that I still cut to the low(er) key of the spectrum on what else to carry. I did not deck out a full plate carrier setup with a gazillion mag pouches in tactical multi-cam. My get the rifle accessory is a 5.11 sling bag in good old black.

While it will certainly be hard to hide a rifle, it is something that can be set down in the weeds or behind the truck seat. Chest rigs are never discrete.

The 5.11 bag (think sneaky bag) will also work with a hiking backpack if things actually get THAT bad. Man I hope they don't.

Options are nice.

Anonymous said...

Sneaky bag = tennis racket case. 15 bucks at Wal-Mart, even a fixed stock carbine can be hidden when disassembled into the upper and lower. :D

Midwest Chick said...

Mr. B has a great posting on bug out bags here:

and here:

I have a get-home bag in the car, along with a Henry .22. My at-home bug out bag weighs about 45 pounds and also has a jacket, hiking boots, and two pairs of socks next to it.

One of the the things we've considered is uniformity of ammo so we have as few calibers as possible but still try to cover as many bases as possible.

Alan J. said...

For me, deciding on whether or not to take my long guns would depend on the situation. In the more likely scenarios of flood, wildfire, earthquake or other natural disaster where I'd have enough time to bug out at all, then I'd treat my guns the same as any other easily portable valuable property. In the very unlikely scenarios of civil unrest or government collapse, then I'd rather not bug out at all. YMMV.

Ed Foster said...

My comment on Frank's blog:

I basically agree with Gerry about government camps. I'm sure that there would be a "shakedown" for weapons as soon as the first one was used in even the most rightious case of self defense.

Also, I suspect the resupply of government camps would fail in an embarrassingly short number of days, even after any food or medicine brought in by the more prepared was confiscated "for the public good".

Being trapped inside the wire with hysterical liberal victims and inner city bangers when things got tough and the guards started to drift away home with whatever they could carry doesn't strike me as a fun option.

Living in the Hartford CT/Springfield MA urban area, I'm smack in the middle of festering inner city areas surrounded by miles of the most "tony" suburbs on the continent. Kept apart by only a thin blue line that will quickly slide off to protect their own if things get bad enough.

Which is one reason (along with hunting and fishing) that I spend a lot of time on secondary roads, one lane blacktop, and dirt roads, just outside the half hour commuting range of the typical yuppie.

Those Litchfield Hills to the west are the northern part of the Appalaichins, and there isn't a single interstate or 4-lane road in the entire northwest fourth of the state.

There isn't a single 2-lane road within 2 miles of a very nondescript 7 acre plot at the end of a winding, quite defensible dirt path, with ruts deep enough to discourage anyone not riding in a four wheel drive vehicle.

Hopefully, I'll be able to doze up a backstop next year and build a 100 yard range my friends and I can go shooting at. I want every one of them to remember the place and think of it as somewhere they might want to be if things got sticky.

Let's see, a SEAL, several cops, several former Marines, a guy who teaches Designated Marksman at Benning, two former Airborne types, and various family members. All I need after that is a good well.

Seriously though, I also agree with you that attendance at a government run soiree might be a bit more than optional, which is why I would try to defend in place as long as possible, then slip west on farm roads when either encroaching government or displaced Gangstas made that untenable.

If, as the economic types say, we will be in the same place as Greece by 2019, obviously there is nobody big enough to bail us out. I suspect the stresses might cause a cultural fail long before then if the Tea Party types don't force some major changes in the next few years.

But I suspect a small, concealable handgun would only be of use once in a camp. I think a good pair of wirecutters and a backup bugout bag wedged under the back seat of the car might be worthwhile accessories.

Borepatch said...

Nothing says "Get off my lawn" quite a photogenically as a Garand. It's marketing.

Once the triggers get squeezed, it's something very different, as Frank points out very well.

Anonymous said...

When I was a youngster there were riots in Trenton after Dr. Kings death. One area, Chambersburg, sealed it's self of by blocking all the roads to everyone including the popo and posting armed people at the road blocks.

They told the police they would handle problem in their area and the cops should go where they were needed. Worked out no shots were fired because surprise, the riot stopped about two blocks away and made a hard right turn.

I have no doubt that the reputation of that neighborhood made people think twice.


Boat Guy said...

Count me with the "ain't goin into the Govt camp" crowd.
I think carbines have a place; if we're down to BOB's we're ready to go on foot if need be; and things are BAD.
We have "Go Bags" made by SOTech. GOOD stuff. A number of us have used these bags in conjunction with vehicles in bad places - if you ever have to bail out of a vehicle THIS is THE bag you want.(Full disclosure I once briefly worked with the guy who runs SOTech). Among the many great things about these bags is that our Stag 2's will fit inside them when they're broken in half. We can be low-profile if need be and then would rely on .45 XD's.
Ammo for the carbines is in MagPul mags kept in GI ammo bandoliers (the green cloth ones). I just yesterday bought some pouches (three x double) that can be slung over the shoulder but they only fit GI mags

Anonymous said...

Why do gun nuts worry about the guns instead of the friends?

I got enough guns to equip a reinforced platoon. I want a bunch of friends to bug out with who know how to run the guns and have the same mindset as I do.

Shootin' Buddy

Boat Guy said...

Once we get to where we need to be; there are REAL rifles. I'm with Borepatch on that...

Boat Guy said...

Right on SB. I don't "worry" about the friends, I worry about getting to the rally point to link up with them.

og said...

I don't have any "black guns" but if I do buy an M4gery or make one some day, it will be for the same reason I have an M1 carbine: it's fun to shoot!

If I have to "Bug out", I'd probably be more inclined to make sure I had gas for the chainsaw and tools. I don't doubt I could sometime be in a situation where I need to use deadly force to protect myself, but I also know that I'm a LOT more likely, in any "bugout" scenario I can imagine, to need a chainsaw than a carbine. Hammer and nails, too. Axe. Shovel.

I'm not going to end up in any "Government" camp, except to potentially loot it. I'm not going to show up anywhere with an assload of ammunition and weapons, lacking the ability to mend a door, dig a well, dress a hog, or generally make myself incredibly useful to anyone I decide to bugout WITH.

NotClauswitz said...

Call me a pessimist - but I guess living in earthquake country makes me a shelter-in-place kinda guy. IMO it's going to be more like Stalingrad in Enemy at the Gates than any nature hike gun camp-out and weenie roast. This is not Brazil, we don't have an Amazon basin to carve-out.

1.) There's no place around *here* to bug-out to. You'd be better off hoisting sail and heading out the Golden Gate. If you go out onto the street it's miles and miles of suburbia all around - a land so benighted by bourgeoisie strip-malls and shopping that The City hipsters and record-shop employees hate it.

2.) If you head for the nearby coastal hills you'll find they're quite full - mostly very wealthy people already, and they're armed and they don't want you up there. I know some of them and know they are armed - I don't know what arms they haven't told me about, but I suspect there's some very interesting stuff stashed-away - and that they will be very reluctant to let YOU or anyone else go traipsing around up in their back-yard. So I might find a temporary place to bunk or roll out the bag but I'd best be moving along soon.

3.) If you make it across The Central Valley and up to the Gold Country you'll find much the same thing, except the people aren't as wealthy, they're retirees who have their own ideas (and guns), and don't want you there either. Their kids will be the ones allowed to come-up to protect the homestead. And If you get yourself into a woodsy National Park or Forest you'll probably find it full of retired Cops.

4.) All the Central Valley lands have a parcel tag number and a real-estate value - someone owns it and is on it or will get a call from the Sheriff if you go squatting there. Much of the Gold Country "bug out hills" does also.

That's California anyhow, apart from the Indian reservations if you go far enough afield to really-really be distant, then you've probably driven six-hours with other similar distance-seekers and you're at a trail-head somewhere about to go trekking with sixty of your newest best friends - and you'll find that most anywhere you go you're still probably withing about thirty minutes of a road.
People have already been ALL OVER the Sierra back-country for the past hundred and seventy years. I've been on Enduro races and dual-sport rides up in what we thought was in the back-freaking-nothing, places where you could barely stand upright because there was no level ground, and come across houses and people in the most unexpected places. There are mountain passes with names on them, on little twisty broken asphalt roads, with a development in the pines nearby. All the Sheriffs drive 4x4's because they know the dirt and backroads that lace the area.

Having done a mess of hitchiking around and fence hopping in my misspent youth, going coast-to-coast and back, it seems to me that there's not much vacant "Yonder" out there. You can hobo around on in cammo and 5.1 boots and play camper with the homeless who have all those "Freeman" areas staked-out - they're mostly under the freeway in wedge-shaped bits of nasty crapland, and it's noisy and dirty there, and the water is foul.

Enjoy the fantasy, but the real hard work is not camping out and bushwacking with guns - it's putting politician's feet to the fire in the marble halls of the Capitol.

Boat Guy said...

I feel for you DirtCrashr; I was staioned in the Bay area during the Loma Prieta quake in '89. We ran boats all over the area since that was one of the best ways to get around.
Saw Americans living like refugees in a major city, it left an impresssion (and a promise to myself NEVER to live in the PRC by choice).

Eck! said...

I've not thought about it in that way as to what weapons. To me its sorta looking at the wrong end of the gun.

I have looked hard at Katrina and other major events and am old enough to remember the 60s and 70s riots. So there are a lot of possible life as we like it ending cases there to explore and understand before formulating plans. Note the use of plural as being prepared means as much for any or all and being able to react to it intelligently and quickly. There is likely no one plan that is best and likely no one set of gear to implement the plan.

So there are two reasons for firearms, hunting and defense. How what and where may control the tools and their design. Wholesale defense against armed groups has a half life of minutes unless you are lucky and they are stupid. Something to not bet on. Better to form groups and form a common defense. Or fix local government and be willing to back it up.

In the end it's better to do all things to prevent disaster or foreshorten its time of impact.

Then have plans B,C and maybe d though z.


theirritablearchitect said...

I'll have to also agree with what Dirt is saying, Bugging Out, for me at least, is Buggin In, and I own a piece of land in the hinterboonies. The reason; I have nothing there, except for raw resources, mostly timber.

The bulk of what I have in the way of tools and other consumables is at my house, waaaaay out in the 'burbs, so getting home from my office is about as far as I need to "Bug Out" to, which is plenty far, come to think of it.

So getting home and staying put, blocking off the neighborhood (or the town, if it comes to that), arming the willing and securing what we have would be a more reasonable objective with a higher success rate for me and my family.

Screw getting out on foot (sorry, but I don't know more than a few people who could hack a 100-mile+, multi-day hike) as you can't travel fast enough to avoid trouble. It's a sure way of getting your head handed to you by the highwaymen who WILL take to the roads when times get bad.

Getting some food and a plan put together, along with keeping contact with those in your area who can share the security load will be a far better strategy than becoming a nomad.

Ed Foster said...

A quick addendum: I've been a closet survivalist of sorts since hurricane Hugo back in the late '80's. Before the worst of the storm got to us, I was watching CBS news coverage of the storm's effect in the American Virgin Islands.

The local police and National Guard down there, chosen for P.C. rather than competence (think New Orleans or D.C. writ large), had mutinied and gone on a rampage of looting, beatings, and rape. They got as far as the yacht basin, and it got interesting.

They had no video feed, and were getting commentary from a reporter on the scene via telephone. His comment was "I can't believe this. The yachtsmen are fighting the National Guard house to house, and they're beating them, driving them back".

Small boat piracy was still a big problem in the Carribean at the time, and the full time sailboat types usually had families to protect, so they were quite well armed, with shotguns and "shark rifles", usually scope sighted bolt action centerfires.

I never heard commentary again on the subject, on CBS or any other network, and none of the mutineers were publicly punished. I suspect the police kept their jobs, and the mutineers were encouraged not to re-up at the end of their enlistments, but that's only a guess.

Concidering how many non-resident golfers have been murdered out on the courses for nothing more than their wallets, at times when the areas in question were crawling with local cops, the Yankee side of the Virgins is no place I would want to visit.

I would trust any cop in Connecticut, at least if he wasn't guarding a D.P. camp and worrying about his family. Likewise the National Guard, which is mostly drawn from small town and rural Good Ol' Boys.

But what might get deputized by the politicians, or even the camp authorities to keep the peace and provide a semblance of politically correct quotas?

It would be setting the fox to watch the henhouse.

It would be better to stall the feds with stories of incontinence, wait for them to make it around the corner, then slide off across the tobacco fields in the 4-by.

NotClauswitz said...

After Loma Prieta there was no problem getting around anywhere on my XR650L dual-sport. But we didn't suffer in any way down in Olde Silicon Valley - electricity never went out nor water, and there were no major fires. 90% of earthquake damage is the fire afterwards.
But there's nowhere to run TO, unless you have a sailboat or rich friends in the hills. Somebody with a winery is an IDEAL friend, a Micro-Brew is next...
As an owner and Board Member I'm concerned about the next Quake and older folk who live upstairs and may not easily get down, but it's to my advantage to have the high-ground including the roofs, and I have ladders. I know my infrastructure and back ways, the PG&E roads and Water-district paths. Information is power, dig-in. Hack the ENOTWAWKI SHTF.

Bubblehead Les. said...

Agree with Frank on the "I'll pick up the mags later" silliness, but disagree on the Bugout. When the Police show up at your door and say "We're evacuating your neighborhood because of the train derailment (5 miles away, 2 years ago) and the chlorine gas is heading this way, and you have 5 minutes to leave, you better be prepared for Bugging Out. Hell, smart people Bug out all the time. Lots a people have to leave every year due to Hurricanes, Wildfires, Tornados, Power Outages, Floods (remember Nashville this spring?), etc. The difference is do you have a place to Bug Out to IF you aren't injured and have to go to the Hospital. I do, and I planned for it well in advance. Just made a dry run this past Sunday to it to check on things. I also have a 3 day pack in every vehicle, Wifeypoo and I have a 7 day pack for each of us by the backdoor, and 30 days worth of stuff on a pallet in the garage that we could load into the back of the pickup in @20 minutes. 6 months worth of supplies at the retreat, 6 months here at the home. And various and sundry firearms go with us at all times. Made a vow long ago, I'm not going behind the wire. "From MY cold dead hands" is not a threat, but a promise to all those who would do evil to me and mine.

Revolver Rob said...

It's an unpopular opinion I hold I will condense in into two or three points.

1) Given your end of the world, societal collapse, zombie outbreak, whatever scenario. The first person I'm shooting in the face, is the one who is carrying an AR/AK, with the chest plate and eighty magazines. I believe in eliminating the highest "threat" value first and wearing that stuff makes you a visible and immediate threat. *Note, if you are being aggressive in anyway, you would be shot. Leave me alone and I'll leave you alone.

2) When you need a rifle, you need a rifle. I'm not sold on carbines anymore as weapons. I'd rather shoot 100 yards with an M1 Garand than 100 yards with an AR15. For a long gun, I just prefer a pump shotgun and lots of buckshot.

3) I have a "grab bag", I use it mostly to speed up my travel packing. When I take long road trips, I take a long gun, because I can't fight my way back home to a long gun and I may not know where to escape too (although I try). The bag has a spare pistol, spare magazines (for that and my primary), spare handgun ammo, and shotgun shells. I don't have a bob, I keep bottled water in the car and all of my camping/field gear in one spot with an empty backpack nearby. If I need it, it's a five minute pack and we're gone. I don't dedicate trunk space, because I don't think it's realistic that you won't get even five minutes warning, except for a house fire (in which case I'm screwed, but insured).


Skip said...

Her car has 2 days in a backpack. Mine a little more. If we are seperated, we fight back to our AO, home.
We have a local area watch/cover your ass group.
Guns? Yeah. Seniors/kids covered? Yeah.
Night watch, got it.
Worst case would be a fire. Got it covered .
Natural disaster, planned. Zombies, perimater secured.
Block parties, killer.