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razorblade

a newbie question

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hi to all, my first post here :) sorry for my english, it'n not my first language. anyway, i'm a universtity student and i live about 350 km away for my home. what is, in your opinion, the best way and gear to return home in a SHTF scenario? no car because i haven't the money :)

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Welcome. Lots of good posts here about prepping on a budget. Here is a post from another college student that should help you. Are you in a major city? Do you plan to meet up with your family or ride it out closer to campus?

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good question. go for the basics. get a decent pack within your range of finances then keep stuff simple. food, water, fire, shelter or means to make it. change of clothes, sturdy shoes, and then check the terrain and map out several possible routes since you have so long to go.. road maps in combination with topo maps will help a lot. not sure where you are but seasons will play a part in your trek. stay low and stay off of major roads if possible and depending on the SHTF scenario.

 

I work about 45 road miles from my house and keep a "get home bag" in my vehicle just in case i have to hoof it home on foot..good luck there is a ton of info on this site to expand on what i just briefly hit on.

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A bicycle sounds like your best bet. You can move much faster than walking, you can carry the bike over any obstacles, and a bike can haul your weight plus 20-25kg on a rack/pannier system. They cost much less than a car, and have nearly zero maintenance.

i'm in quite good shape, how many miles do you think i can handle in a day?

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Depends on where your at!!what kind of kriders are around.

You need to study your area!and get maps and print them out!

Food that is easy to make or purchase now.Like MREs or instant freeze dryed.Than Its about water!!maping is to show you water sourses along the way on the "trail" road..

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If you dont mind us asking, where are located? Might help us understand the terrian and what type of specific obstales you might face. No worries if you perfer not to answer. Also, is the family in the same country or will you have to cross any borders. That might impact your plans. As 101Matt said, focus on water (purification, location, etc) first. For food, if you plan to get to your family first, I would not worry as much about hunting and trapping, since it will slow you down.

 

To figure out your mileage and how long it will take you to get home, keep in mind that a normal person in normal conditions (on trail with decent size load) walks at about 3 miles per hour. More of less depending on if you are trying to go faster and the terrain. I did a 30 mile hike on the Application Tail (mild mountain trail) with a 35-40 pound pack in one day (cant remember the hours, but it was not more than 9). I had already been hiking for about a month before, but was beat at the end of the day. You can do more on a bike if you are able to use one. This should help you determine how long you will be out. Of course depending on the situation, your time might be doubled.

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For a base line comparison, I am 105kg mass, my bicycle is a Specialized Hardrock 29 (http://www.specialized.com/us/en/bc/SBCProduct.jsp?spid=51625), which is an All Terrain Bicycle. ATB = a fancier version of a mountain bike. On mostly flat, paved ground, I have maintained 18-20 kph for 8 hours (taking several short breaks to stretch, toilet, etc). That was with 16.5kg of gear on the back rack, and wearing appropriate cycling clothing in warm weather. My wife, who is half my mass and rides a slightly smaller bike, rode with me the entire way, and carried 10.8kg of gear on her bike. My wife and I are both over 40 years old (actually I'm closer to 50, but if I mention her age online I'll be eating dry cat food for a month...). We are in average physical shape, but I am a good 15 kilos overweight, and about as aerodynamic as a locomotive.

 

The distance you can cover in a day depends on many factors, from the bike (gearing, geometry, tires, etc) and your gear (cycling shoes/street shoes, cycling clothing/street clothes) and of course the weather and terrain. A good rule of thumb is that you will be able to move 5x as fast (or 5x as far) as a man walking with similar weight gear.

 

When I commute to work, I ride 5.1 miles (8.2 km) on the streets, and it takes me 20-21 minutes. That's about 24 kph, but I'm in cycling clothes and shoes, and carrying only about 10 kg of gear. I'm starting fresh though, and the weather is cool, and I don't have to stop for very many lights. When I drive my truck to work, it takes me 15-18 minutes, depending on how I catch the traffic lights.

Edited by survivalcyclist

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but I am a good 15 kilos overweight, and about as aerodynamic as a locomotive.

 

 

i would think that being a cyclist would keep you in better shape though 15 kilo's is way better than what im hauling around. lol are bikes not good for weight management???

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Ah Rome a transit nightmare, a bike is definately you best bet a backpacking water filter, and some MRE,s for quick prep and high energy, not exactly gourmet but more energy over all than freeze dry no fire needed to heat the meal or prep time, I would also throw in some mainstay bars, a light sleeping bag with a silk liner and a mylar blanket should cover your sleeping situation a 2.5 meter by 3 meter nylon/waterproofed and taped seam tarp with 35 meters of 550 parachute cord makes a good dry fast shelter that packs small and light, a good first aid kit, a camel back and 1ltr plastic water bottle, a spare innertube, a small air pump, a lighter, two boxes of storm safe matches, two small adjustable wrenches, a flat and phillips head 6 inch screw drivers a gerber and a good knife is a good start and light enough to backpack out if the bike is stolen or destroyed while not overburdening your bike, breaking the bank, or being overwhelming to keep track of.

Edited by warrior7r

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i would think that being a cyclist would keep you in better shape though 15 kilo's is way better than what im hauling around. lol are bikes not good for weight management???

 

Bicycles are good for all sorts of things, lol! But I don't ride as often as I used to, because in June of last year I was hit-and-run by a car and nearly killed. It has taken quite some time to get back to anywhere near normal. Between the stress of $12000 in medical bills, ongoing memory problems due to the TBI, being unable to work for a while (then having my company cut everyone's hours back because of the recession), and THEN having my ex-wife take me back to court because she wants to triple my child support obligations...well, I have not had the energy or the motivation to work out like I used to do.

 

In spite of all that, I'm getting better slowly, and my stress levels are way down since I started tackling my financial problems with a real plan of action. My medical bills are down to about 6K now, my attorney has knocked off most of the crap the ex-wife tried to tack onto the child support, and I'm no longer having to take medication for blood clots in my head (blood thinners suck, let me tell you). I work on my feet all day, and I routinely lift 50-80 pound objects and carry them around, so I'm not weak - I'm just not where I want to be on my weight yet. (My wife points out that I still have the energy to chase her around like a teenage male, and the strength to carry her off over my shoulders if I can catch her, LOL).

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If you plan to cycle regularly for distance or fitness, consider investing in "clipless pedals" and matching cycling shoes, specifically the mountain bike style shoes. These are shoes that are designed to click-and-lock onto the pedals, which allows you to pedal with a circular motion, not just alternately pushing each leg down (like you would be doing with street shoes and standard platform pedals). By locking your foot to the pedal, you can pull up with your leg as you push down with the other. This makes you massively more efficient in terms of energy transferred. You will go farther, and faster, with less wasted energy. You will also be using muscles in your legs that you almost never do otherwise, which is going to make you sore until you get used to it - but its worth it. I recommend the mountain bike style shoes because they have cleats on the bottom, so you can walk around on them in dirt, rocks, grass (etc). Clipless road shoes have extremely flat, smooth soles and have no traction at all on anything except smooth dry pavement.

 

If you don't want to invest in cycling shoes and matching pedals, or your situation limits your ability to have a pair of cycling shoes in your BOB, you should look at getting 'toe cages' (also known as 'clips') which look like little baskets on the front of your standard platform pedals. You can then wear street shoes or boots with your pedals, and get some of the benefit of clipless efficiency, without having to use special shoes.

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razorblade,

It's been 13 years since I was in Rome. Beautiful country you live in. First off, plan on it taking 3 to 4 days. Still short enough I'd pack food and not waste time foraging but you are probably NOT going to be able to bicycle down the freeway after a disaster. I just don't see the crowds of scared folks letting you peddle off down the road. I could be wrong but I've always seen it taking MUCH longer to travel than folks plan on. Experience with hurricanes seems to indicate that 10 mph is an excellent average on highways.

 

You may actually be forced to walk out. Perhaps railroad right of ways would be a better choice. If you have not already gone when the problems start, you may not be able to use the roads. They will be crowded with evacuees. If you've seen the films from WW2 you will get some idea of what it is like. The military could not move because the roads were jammed with civilians running.

 

Power line right of ways, railroad right of ways or via boat if the coast is an option but be prepared to abandon the roads if need be. If you are lucky and beat the crowds out, you may be able to use the bike but if things have started going down hill, you will be walking and I suspect that crowds may not be your friends.

 

A fit person with good gear can walk 20 miles in a day. I plan of getting no more than 5 because of hazards during the walk. I may be optimistic. Plan on something like that to make a guess. Then double the time because it will likely be worse than you think it will be. If it isn't, you're lucky. If it is, then at least you are prepared.

 

Just my not so humble opinion.

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Razorblade, Riding a bike in relative comfort when cars are broken down and people are walking will make you an IMMEDIATE and EASY target! Your best chance is to get out right away while most people will be ebating and/or trying to ride i out. Time will NOT be on your side!

 

Prepare yourself that you will probably be waking at least part of he way. It will take you much longer than you imagine right now.

 

Do a practice walk out of Bella Roma and see how long just that little bit takes you. Then calculate to your home and multiply by 2.5.

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Bicycles are good for all sorts of things, lol! But I don't ride as often as I used to, because in June of last year I was hit-and-run by a car and nearly killed. It has taken quite some time to get back to anywhere near normal. Between the stress of $12000 in medical bills, ongoing memory problems due to the TBI, being unable to work for a while (then having my company cut everyone's hours back because of the recession), and THEN having my ex-wife take me back to court because she wants to triple my child support obligations...well, I have not had the energy or the motivation to work out like I used to do.

 

In spite of all that, I'm getting better slowly, and my stress levels are way down since I started tackling my financial problems with a real plan of action. My medical bills are down to about 6K now, my attorney has knocked off most of the crap the ex-wife tried to tack onto the child support, and I'm no longer having to take medication for blood clots in my head (blood thinners suck, let me tell you). I work on my feet all day, and I routinely lift 50-80 pound objects and carry them around, so I'm not weak - I'm just not where I want to be on my weight yet. (My wife points out that I still have the energy to chase her around like a teenage male, and the strength to carry her off over my shoulders if I can catch her, LOL).

 

 

finally somebody who has it like my g.friend and i have it lol. if it aint one thing its two. wow and we

thought we were alone out here. man, i know almost exactly what your going through bro. cant win for losing. hell, i dont even bother to look and see if the sun is shining on our side of the street any more.

things will get better at some point im sure. "teotwaWki" has several different meanings for us. B)

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