You May Like The Idea Of living In The Boonies But Would You Cope With The Reality?



Many of us dream of getting back to our roots, of leading a simpler life. A life not bombarded by the chemicals that billow from car exhausts and a life where the constant electro-babble from televisions and computers is a thing of the past. We dream of life in the boon-docks, living off-grid and growing our own food, fishing in the lake and snuggling in front of the open fire at the end of the day. Electricity would be generated by my log-look solar panels on the roof…no smelly fuel guzzling generators for me!

I’ve thought about this a lot and I’ve decided that great as it sounds that it’s highly unlikely I could actually pull it off, there wouldn’t be enough hours in the day…well there would be, maybe, if I worked non-stop from early morning until late at night and that really doesn’t sound like the ideal life-in-my-cabin I envisioned.

Thing is, none of us may have a choice. Let’s have a quick look at Venezuela. The price of oil, their main export drops and the wheels fall off the country. People queue for hours to get a loaf of bread, electricity is rationed in some places and a distant memory in others. The government opened shops where prices were fixed…but they are broke as well and these stores operate on a when it’s gone it’s gone basis, hence the queues.

Think it couldn’t happen here? Oh yes it could – quite easily and there are a number of things that could cause us to find ourselves in such a dire situation.

Any of those things could tip the balance and put us in a position where life as we know it changes almost overnight and I’m pretty sure that it would not be as easy to cope with an off-grid and off everything else lifestyle in a town or city as it would be in my cabin, and that would be hard enough.

Part of this is the mentality of the situation. If you relocate to a cabin in the woods you know you life is going to see a big change, you know that everything is going to be hard work and to some extent you have mentally prepared for it – though I still feel the reality would be a huge shock to the vast majority of people. Finding yourself in this position unexpectedly would be a waking nightmare in my humble opinion.

Now the little hideaway in my minds eye has pristine clean fresh water…the lake I mentioned, which will also supply the bulk of the protein I need to keep everyone healthy and I am surrounded by ample fuel for my stove…the woods I mentioned. The soil is fertile to grow the food I mentioned, but even with all of these things in place the reality is it would be f*&@ing hard work.

Imagine waking up and finding this is your new reality when you live in the middle of town, or worse a city and the chance of getting out – if you had anywhere to go to – has passed.

Things you need to think about

  • Water: That goes pretty soon after the electricity gives out. Think drinking, cooking, hygiene and laundry. That’s a lot of water. Where are you going to get it and how are you going to store it?
  • Cash: It should be out of the bank by now and at least 50% of it converted into tangible assets such as food, clothes, manual tools, silver, gold or anything else you lack. If it’s not think about the fact that a major financial crisis may well mean that you will never see your money again.
  • Food: If you have cash and the shops have food great but anything that disrupts the just in time food supply we have means that you can have a barrow full of cash and possibly have nothing to buy with it.
  • Garden: Know anything about gardening? You should. Even a window sill or two and a few pots can provide a small but useful amount of fresh greens, especially if you plant cut and come again varieties. If you really don’t have anywhere to grow you can still grow bean sprouts and a variety of other sprouts in a jam jar.

This is a VERY basic list and is intended to make those new to prepping consider what is actually involved in a societal breakdown. The cause of that breakdown fades into insignificance when you are trying to survive everyday.

Think about the things you do in a day. Start with waking up and list your activities, end the list when you go to bed. You need to think how you would complete those tasks if you were living in a different reality. It’s harder than you think to solve these problems on paper let alone in real life and this is the very reason  they need to be thought about ahead of time, not at the point when a catastrophe befalls you.

When you look at the list you’ve made you will be surprised how long it is, how many issues you will need to resolve in order to have a life with even a semblance of normality about it.

Take each item on the list and look at it, research it, find the best fit for you in your situation. Some things will work for you, others won’t be suitable. Without looking into the options available you won’t know what’s out there.

Every step you take on your preparedness journey is one step nearer your goal.

Take care,


15 thoughts on “You May Like The Idea Of living In The Boonies But Would You Cope With The Reality?”

  1. This is a comment on could you survive a long term grid down and life in the boonies. Where we live there is a country store five miles away which has hardware , animal feed and mostly basic groceries. If you forgot to thaw meat for supper you can get frozen pizza and a couple kinds of canned dinners. They re supply from Anchorage with their own truck so if the grid goes down they will be empty in a few days. The nearest full service grocery store is forty miles one way so you don’t run to the store for hamburger. This is in normal times so we stock up and plan meals.
    It was 5F here this morning (-15C). They don’t even cancel school until -50F. (-40F equals -40C). Yeah! It gets quiet as most people don’t travel when it is that cold.
    We personally are off grid so the only way we would know about a massive grid down is if the internet stopped working. The local grid is not interconnected with anything else so it might not even go down.
    I’m getting a bit too old to raise everything I would like and am looking for some one to partner on the garden to keep the land clear and productive. I expect that in a SHTF situation at least some of my town children, grand children and great grand children would show up and increase the labor force.
    Living in the boonies still can allow for neighbors. You need to cultivate community. If you buy a remote property and don’t live there all the time it may not work in a time of crisis for one thing a garden needs to be worked every year and I can tell you from experience that the weeds can get ahead of you even if you can be there two days most weeks.
    We have solar panels but they don’t produce much in winter but most of our power use is internet and my grandson’s gaming computer so we could cut generator run time a lot (we usually burn about 5 gallons of gas a month in winter) our primary lighting is hard plumbed propane lights but we could cut back on the number of lights burning to conserve propane. We also have backup oil lamps and fuel. Our primary heat and cooking is the kitchen wood fired range (large airtight fire box). We have almost two years wood stacked and would ration gas to make sure we could keep the chain saws running.
    The basic strategy is to keep your supplies stocked up and then go on tight rationing as soon as something serious goes down. You can count on the fact that the boonies are at the end of the supply chain and if the world normalizes you will be the last to have a chance to resupply. If life doesn’t ever return to normal you have time to work out how to go on as no one can know all the possible situations that could occur so there is no reason to waste energy and worry to try and plan for all the possible permutations of disaster.

    1. Howard, I salute you and Mrs Howard

      I think of you scolding me every time I shiver when it’s 7 degrees C. I really don’t think I could cope, I would try my hardest but I think that I am just not hardy enough or tough enough or whatever you want to call it.

      I would so love to meet you and learn the lessons you could teach me, you have so much knowledge and you are so capable you make me look inept!!!

      I have wondered why you actually visit the site…I’m very glad you do and so grateful that you share your knowledge in the comments.

      Thanks so much for coming back time after time and giving us a reality check.


      1. Thanks for the praise. I read your site partly because you make me think about things from other peoples perspective. Also partly because your science and health papers are useful and thought provoking as well. I am glad to share the occasional insight I might have based on my experience. Thank you for posting the comment as an article. My main point on prepping is that no one can know how a SHTF problem will play out in the long run so your preps are to gain time to figure out what’s happening and deal with it.

  2. Liz

    Spent time thinking about this scenario. I know that I wouldn’t be able to be totally self sufficient on my own. Way too much work and I’m getting too old for it anyway.

    I watch my neighbours, Old Order Mennonites, working their farm from sun up to sundown. Then again, they’re a young family with a lot of kids to help out. Their siblings live on neighbouring farms so they often work together. I’ve also noticed that they will hire out some of the jobs to “English” farmers with tractors to help keep up with the chores. Proves that no man is an island.

    For a real taste of the boonies, you need to experience a winter with -25C temps, mountains of snow and not another living soul going by for the entire day or days. Step outside and all you can hear is nothing, absolutely no sound whatsoever. I know there are people living on the same road but you still feel really isolated. Howard, way up in Alaska, could probably share some stories as well.


    1. Morning KK

      You mentioned the S word, you know the thought of snow makes me break out in hives!!!!. Seriously I get what you are saying completely. I believe that things that make us think are the only way we can at least try to get our head around some of the issues we will face. Yes Howard is my go to cold weather guru, he is incredibly knowledgeable about so many things though, if he started a website he’d blow me out the water lol.
      Hope alls well your end,

  3. The back to Eden method of wood chip gardening is incredibly good. I’ve been using it for years now. It is minimum effort with maximum yield. Check it out on YouTube,it really works wonders!
    The growing tension between America and Russia is becoming more and more alarming. Then I read on zerohedge this evening that the Russian government is recalling all its officials and their children who live abroad back to Russia – immediately. This worries me more than anything else I have read so far. What do you think is the likelihood Lizzie of the UK being dragged into a war between America and Russia?

    1. Hi Sue,

      I will get back to you re the home schooling but may be off to Tanzania…don’t ask long story lol.
      Well we are sandwiched between the two aren’t we? Thing is Putin was invited into Syria by the internationally recognised government of that country. The United States were not invited and therefore by having boots on the ground they are technically an invading force…

      If any war goes nuclear the entire planet will suffer one way or another…but we are way closer to Russia than the USA so anything dropped on them will affect the UK.

      I think India and Pakistan have hair triggers as well and it’s getting a bit hot over the Kashmir border.

      the world is going to shit putting it bluntly.

      For the record Bashar al Assad was a great surgeon, worked with him briefly before he was forced to become president. His brother should have taken over when his father died but he was killed in a road accident so Bashar was landed with the job. He was 35 I think and the rules said he had to be 40, he thought he’d got away with it but they changed the law and lowered the age.

      His wife is the one to watch she is a right handful, the power behind the throne so to speak. British born Syrian parents and a total bitch…”I am Asma al Assad, remember my name” It must have been an arranged marriage, he could never have chosen her.

      Sorry, I digress but it’s weird to watch all this and see a guy who was a great ophthalmic surgeon the patients loved!!!!

      Putin will not concede ground in my opinion.

      Just because we don’t agree with a regime we do not have the right to bomb the shit out of another country to depose the president. I don’t overly like Theresa May but I’m stuck with her, where do you draw the line Sue?

      To propose a no fly zone where the Russians and Syrians can’t fly but the US and the coalition can is ludicrous. It’s Syrian airspace for God sakes. No, I can’t see Putin backing down, God help us all if Clinton gets in…she’s a Bush and Obama clone and we all know where that led. Trump will run the country like a business and I don’t believe for one moment being president is about helping the people…it’s a power kick so i wouldn’t be happy with him either. To be fair I hate all politicians, liars the lot of them. we have moved so far from the likes of Neville Chamberlain and politicians that wanted to improve the lot for the country as a whole. As for American politicians, might as well call them the millionaires club…it’s about money and control.

      Needed to rant, thanks for listening.


  4. Great article. I had this gardening video saved in my bookmarks and thought you might like it…

    1. Evening Dave,
      Thank you so much for that I will have a look at it in the next few minutes. Thanks so much for reading and taking the time to share and comment.

      Liz x

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