I'm sure that everyone has their favorite, whether it's deep in the desert or lost in the forest or on a high mountain peak, but what is ~your~ ideal location (in the US or elsewhere) for when TSHTF, and why?
For me, I've come up w/ two places (one I just returned from). Either The Big Island of Hawaii (Fishing is abundant, hunting is abundant, year round growing season, few people, and 3000 miles from anywhere), or Southern Chile (climate similar to the Pacific NW, stable democracy, lots of "room to roam", and far enough from many things that again sheer geographical distance should help keep a person safe).
That's what I had liked about Hawaii. Land on the Big Island isn't too terribly expensive ~ you can get 50 acres for about 200K in some instances. For some not a bargain, but not too extreme. Also, with rainfall of 150" a year, water is in ready supply. Also, it benefits from what alot of land locations don't ~ people would be hard pressed to traverse 3000 miles of Pacific Ocean to arrive at your doorstep. I went out there this summer w/ the kids, and am keeping it on my short list for once I get my house sold in Atl. I was also thinking about a few places in Tennessee or Eastern Ky.
I have had several friends who have lived on the big island and liked it alot......unfortunatly they lived way out and up on the volcanos...eventually they got tired of evacuating and had the house cut off from lava flow.
They said it was great from a survival aspect as they seldom saw other people and virtually never saw the law and also they said the native islanders were very friendly to those who lived there.
Me personally, I have bought 2 pieces of property soo far......
One in Arizona as I like the gun laws and the isolation the desert offers.
One in the very middle of Kansas, far away from population centers and very sustainable, which also has reasonable gun laws.
One I currently live in here in California, 60 miles north of LA and which I am in the process of selling, so I can vacate this state. Do not get me wrong, cali is beautiful and I live in a area the tempature is 70 average year round and I also live 2 miles from the beach.....it is a wonderful and beautiful state....just do not like the laws and restrictions.....
"The OP wasn't saying people shouldn't be allowed to do this; he's saying it grinds his gizzard" -JOSHIE
That would be a place where you know what you'll find when you get there. That you know where your water is going to be coming from. Where your food is going to be coming from. What the people are like around where you'll be and how they will receive your being there.
In other words it had better be a place you are already intimately familiar with and better still already live there or at least visit often enough that the locals recognize and accept you as one of them.
Anything less and you are taking some big chances.
Bugging out is simply fraught with risk. It only becomes an acceptable alternative when those risks appear to be less than you'd face by staying where you are already at.
@FourDeuce, it depends on what you're looking for the land for. If you're looking simply to roll up acreage, then indeed it can be had for even less than $1000. If, on the other hand, the prospect of having a perpetual 80 degree temperature, steady rainfall throughout the year, and freedom to plant Mangos, Bananas, or year-round Tilapia is ideal, the Big Island has it's advantages. I had the opportunity to drive through the Ozarks, and they were very nice! I was surprised, having seen them, that they really gave me a strong sense of some places in N. Georgia or E. Tennessee
The Big Island has a water problem. Yes, one side gets a LOT of rain, the other side is DRY as a bone! And in a SHTF situation if you didn't already live there how on earth do you think you will manage to get there - paddle an outrigger?
ANY country that is "stable" now could become very unstable overnight given the right circumstances. If you look and talk like a native you could do well as an ex-pat, if you don't then you will become a high-value target very quickly.
As Alan said, the best place is one you KNOW and preferably already live at.
Land on the Big Island isn't too terribly expensive ~ you can get 50 acres for about 200K in some instances
I'm with FourDeuce. That is an INSANE price for land!!
We bought 40 acres three years ago for $16K. And that's actually more than the valuation!
Personally, I think where I'm at is about perfect. Accessible water, low population, fairly temperate climate (a few 100 degree days in the summer, a few sub zero in the winter, but generally just a nice 4-seasons type of climate)
Aside from volcanos, Hawaii would be WAY too crowded for me to ever feel safe in a SHTF type of scenario...
@Wags. You are correct that the Big Island has a dry side and a wet side, but I don't necessarily see it as a problem, unless I wasn't on the right side, lol. But you're correct w/ regard to "how to bug out" to such a far off destination. For me, much of this is early early planning. If TSHTF tomorrow, or next week, or next month, I'd be toast. I'm a single daddy w/ four youngin's. That being said, I'm trying to lay the groundwork as fast as I can, deciding on a well thought out location, making my preparations for moving there, and very interested in hearing what others say about their own favorites.
@ ErinP. If it's not secret, where were you able to find land at such amazing rates? I'm not looking for the physical street address lol, just the general area. The best prices I've seen (at least in the Southeast) have run around $1000 / acre, and typically you'd have to buy large tracts to get those kinds of numbers. Tennessee and Kentucky have shown the largest spread of inexpensive ($1000-$2000) lands, Virginia, N. Carolina, and Georgia were more expensive for the most part. Alabama and S. Carolina were somewhere in the middle. Also, do you "work" this land, or use it more as a buffer between yourself and the neighbors? I'm just as new to land prices as I am to everything else, so any and all info is good info =)
@ErinP. The population density of the BI really isn't too terrible (depending on what some consider a high density). With 150K people spread over 4000 square miles, they have roughly 37 people per mile. That's just ahead of Kansas and Utah, but well below (surprisingly) some of the seemingly wide open states such as Texas, Oklahoma, Colorado, Iowa, or even Arizona. But for now I'm putting that location on the back burner due to costs.
@ ErinP. If it's not secret, where were you able to find land at such amazing rates?
western Kansas. Central and western Nebraska. Western South and North Dakotas. Eastern Colorado (though they usually run a bit closer to $500 for "cheap" land) and so on. It's out there. You just have to look.
BUT we're talking undeveloped, raw land here. No house or outbuildings or anything. Maybe that $200K you were talking about included the house and outbuildings?
they have roughly 37 people per mile
My point exactly. That is WAY too crowded for me.
I haven't lived in an area with more than 10 people per square mile for nearly 20 years.
I prefer something more along the lines of less than 3... (Which is where we've been for the last 10 years.)
Which, btw, is a direct correlation to the cost of land.
@ErinP: I'm looking for land in the areas you mentioned =) Much of what I'm seeing is running a good deal higher than $500 (I'm seeing approx. $1000-$2000 or so), but I'll keep digging. The website I was looking stuff up on is www.landwatch.com, but I don't know if that's a good one or not. Seems to be, but maybe their prop's are more expensive? W/ regard to the Hamakua coast, the $200K would actually be for a piece of property that was "off the beaten path", no improvements or structures of any kind. The trouble w/ most of Hawaii is that farmland battles with vacation homes for limited space, and while the BI is where you'll find the best deals, it's still pricey compared to some spots. That being said, the soil is deep, the weather is consistently 80 degrees (so you can grow crops year round... as soon as you harvest, you can prep the soil and plant again), and w/ heavy rainfall there's no need for irrigation. Still, I can't afford it at the moment. Changing subjects, it's interesting how beautiful Kansas is, but it does seem to have extremes in temperature. I'm not sure how similar it is to Oklahoma, but we drove through Oklahoma this summer and when we got out at one point, it was like being in a blast furnace. High winds, very dry and hot (hotter than anything I'd experienced previously, in some ways hotter than Arizona), sucked the moisture right off my skin and made my eyes burn. That could have been just an unusually hot period though. How do people get adequate water in Kansas? The Ogalala aquifer? Also, what do people do for entertainment being so far apart (or is the idea that entertaining is at the house?).
Nope. Wood stoves are quite common. You find plenty of deadfall along creeks and rivers to cut firewood. Propane is more common, but only for the same reason that wood stoves aren't as popular everywhere else--they're more work.
So far as land prices. Yeah, I've noticed that the nationally listed sites (like landwatch) are higher. What you want to find are the local realtors in any area that you're considering and start watching what THEY have. They'll set the local market.
If I were a seller, I'd go with a national site because the exposure will drive the price higher.
Also, as with anything, just because someone is HOPING to get $1000 an acre doesn't mean they actually expect to do so.
Our place, for example, was listed at $800 per acre (which is a truly ridiculous price for 40 acres of grass in western Kansas lol) But, after a month or two worth of negotiations, the seller was down to a more respectable $400.