The defendable 200 yards of road-frontage

In last weeks “What do you do to prep this week” I posted that I own 200 yards of road-frontage and was quickly flooded with emails telling me that there was no way I could secure 200 yards of road-frontage.

Well to be honest 200 yards isn’t all that much, and as you can see from the pics it is a very defendable position, and I hope these photos will help others choose the right type of location and terrain when relocating.

View from my property of the surrounding hills that are about one mile away.

My view of the one lane road that passes by my property.

View of my property from the one lane road. Note the steep embankment that runs the full length of the property line.

The view approaching my property.

View of the road that goes by my property.

Please share your thoughts in the comments below…

About M.D. Creekmore

M.D. Creekmore is the owner and editor of He is the author of four prepper related books and is regarded as one of the nations top survival and emergency preparedness experts. Read more about him here.


  1. Booby traps are a good thing to study , just be careful that friendlies know where they are . Vehicles can also be put down with things like that . Just sayin . If the SHTF situation is one of no law around , then …………. booby traps make sense . Study shaped improvised charges , knowledge isn’t a crime ………….yet .

    • T.R.

      You would be surprised at the stuff I know LOL.

    • SurvivorDan says:

      The Vietcong gave us all a lesson in nasty improvised primitive booby traps. I was teaching a primitive trapping class (exigent circumstances only) and some of my designs are just scaled down ‘cong’ models. Explosives are nice but so are well placed nasty pointy or heavy things.

    • Brian Willoughby says:

      Very defendable. Put in some concealed firing positions and install some inconspicous range stakes that would be mistaken as surveyors stakes , whip out a range card and you are in buisness. 200 yards should be a very do-able shot for anyone that has taken the time to get to know their particular rifle.

      • A cattle guard is always handy . scrap metal pipe or fencing postes buried deep from the guard to the forrest to stop vehicles perhaps .

  2. Annie Nonymous says:

    Looks like an a awful nice spread to me! I can see some great ops for defensive positions, especially with the full-length embankment (I was looking at a similar kind of thing in an unnamed western state; the seller had issues, however, so that one got passed by).

    What caught my attention was the relative un-notibility of anything going on there – it also looks like there’s a nice stand of timber not too far away. Is that private or public land? Makes a nice resource source as well as a fallback position.

    All in all it’s awful pretty for cheap land. I think you did OK!


  3. I agree MD, you have a perfect view of outlaws coming in and out of your property. It looks like not only a defendable position, but I believe you are strategically in perfect position to go on the offensive as well. Great layout and great job selecting your site. What’s your address again? Just kidding…

  4. I think you picked some nice property…… that from a person who has no tactical experience.

  5. MENTALMATT says:

    M.D. I like the property, I love the privacy, myself i would prefer more wooded area and maybe a creek or river running through it, but thats my dream (please forgive my fantasy). i think from my standpoint it is very defenseible, and I absolutly love the high ground. It gives you a great advantage, you seem to be out of the way and the closest road is a gravel one, which is awsome. You’ve got yourself a gem!


      The top four acres is wooded and the property borders thousands of acres to the rear and that land connects to a national forest.

      • breadmomma says:

        pretty tight…it is a beautiful place…but no ocean…darn…

      • Anonymous says:

        A thought – check with ranger at the park for maps of area and if they have had issues with drug growers (word it differently) – alot of national forests have been dealing with weed growers – just keep a look out behind you too. always have backups plans

        just sayin…

  6. riverrider says:

    md, i WISH mine was that defendable:)

  7. Looks defend-able to me, especially if you have several others with you defending the property. Being at a higher elevation is always advantageous. Based on your second photo you have a clear view of the road and anyone who drives or even walks towards your property using this road can be engaged way before they reach your property. Well placed sniper fire will halt any thugs trying come to your place to loot. Of course if you are outnumbered having some type of fencing or barriers to slow someone’s ascent up the hill can make them easier targets which could help succeed in defense when outnumbered.

    • SurvivorDan says:

      I wouldn’t want to be the one to find out what MDs ‘unwelcome’ mat consists of.

    • JeffintheWest says:

      Allow me to recommend caltrops. You can make them easily enough by buying various size childrens’ jacks (the kind you used to play with when you were a kid and you scooped them up between the bounces of a rubber ball). You simply cut off the little balls on the ends and sharpen the ends to a point. (Or if you can’t find any for sale cheap or they are made out of plastic or pot metal or something equally useless, using one as a model for welding some scrap metal together would work just fine — as well as allowing you to practice your welding skills).

      Anyway, just take the resulting sharpened items of various sizes and scatter them liberally in the long grass on your slope shortly after the SHTF. The little ones will incapacitate anyone wearing moccasins or soft shoes for stealth, and the large ones can stop a charging rhino (or, perhaps more relevantly, a vehicle such as an ATV or a bike) trying to climb the slope. If they’re sharp enough, they’ll go through any shoe or boot made except for the ones with the punji plate in the sole. Believe me, people will get a lot less aggressive when they have a big rusty jack stuck in their foot! Plus it lets your prioritize your targets — the ones hopping around and cussing can wait, the ones still running get your first shots.

      The Caltrop was originally devised by the Roman Army, and have been used for centuries against both infantry and cavalry, and, in more recent times along roads as boobytraps for vehicles. Sometimes, the old ones are the best ones! 🙂

      They could also be made out of split bamboo or several other kinds of woods if you wanted.

  8. SurvivorDan says:

    You’ve slipped up sir. You’ve given away your retreat location. By observing the length of the shadows and direction(note the moss on one side of the trees), estimating the time of the photos, notating the species of indigenous plants and creating several extrapolated virtual road maps, generous use of the publicly available sat. data and running all the info through my find-Waldo (or any tango) software…I have pin-pointed your location. I’m sure it’s obvious to most trained eyes of the Wolfpack…..78 % probability that it is Key Largo, Fla. 22% chance it’s the lee side of Oahu.

    On the serious side, you coldn’t have done much better defensibly unless you were on top of a butte. But then you wouldn’t have much in the way of groundwater. Nor forests for fuel and game. Do you have flowing water or is the site the hilltop? Doesn’t matter, I know you have at least a well, spring , large cistern or you wouldn’t have chosen this site. There will be the inevitable chatter that without 40 defenders working in shifts, you can’t defend this against a horde of determined…..tangoes. {won’t say zombies}. But I like the high ground. I’d take my chances. I would gladly trade my property for your site. Looks good. I’m envious.

  9. SrvivlSally says:

    It looks defendable, alright. From the second photo, which shows the height, you have an advantage. M.D., when you already know the situation and the truth is evident to you, do not listen to those that doubt because maybe they have their own version of what is and is not defendable. What is right for one is not for another. Never feel that you have to prove anything to anyone nor try to convince them of anything. You have to consider that those which did not agree with you, are not on the property with you, able to look at everything in it’s entirety as you can. It would take a bit of work to get up to your home when on foot. In my opinion, you bought the right piece, you have a good driveway, ample room and it is pretty secure all the way around. Great for hunting from. I really like those roads, too. M.D., I know ten men that my family has known for years over here on the West Coast that would take it in a heartbeat. Be content with what you have and enjoy it.

    • SrvivlSally,

      I’m very content and know I don’t have to prove anything to anyone, I’ve been at this for 20 years and I’m confident in my abilities and what I know – I posted the photos with the hope that it might help someone else to choose the right type of location and terrain if they are looking for a place to relocate. As they say a pic is worth a thousand words…

  10. templar knight says:

    MD, your area looks very much like the place I live, rolling hills covered with timber. It’s a nice piece of real estate, looks defensible from where I sit, and I’m wondering where you might put a nice little cabin. I see several promising places. A solar setup, a water well, some livestock, and a garden will make this place heaven on earth. I’m pretty sure a man could be happy there. Congratulations.

  11. SurvivorDan says:

    A while back, I was asking the Wolfpack’s opinion on my returning to Hawaii after over thirty years. . On Kauai. The garden Isle. Not practical. When the SHTF I’d probably have a hell of a fight on my hands. Looking at your site, I realize finally that I will need the remoteness, resources and space that you have there. There will be no going back to the Islands. Of course, that country of yours looks pretty nice.

  12. M.D., Long time no see. First of all congratulations on getting a very nice piece of land. To toss my .02 cents in I would ask a different series of questions.

    It would start like: How would you define ‘defense’ and many armed folks would it take to execute that plan on this property ? Also how would REALISTIC rules of engagement affect your manpower requirements?

    If you are talking about armed personnel in interlocking fighting positions along the boundaries of your land at close intervals 24/7/365 that would take a bunch of people. Without seeing the layout probably dozens of folks. That is likely a non starter.

    If your goals are more modest like say delaying high speed approach from vehicles and having strategically placed lookouts that is a lot more doable.

    It is never a bad idea to consider the max mad/ zombie type scenarios but lets be real. I have a very hard time seeing “they stepped onto my land so we opened up at 150 meters with rifles and killed them all” flying in any realistic scenario. If there has ever been a legitimate case of self defense like that since oh say about a hundred and twentyish years ago when Indians stopped attacking people have not heard of it.

    I would submit to you that observation of boundaries and key avenues of approach and a stout defense of your home/ barn/ shop area is something to consider if things get that bad. “We were at home and they attacked my house” is very different than “well these 5 guys had guns and they were walking near the road and looked like they might go up the hill so we shot them”.

    Very nice place and I am curious to hear more about your defensive plans,

    • TOR,

      As you know, I’ve been saying this for years – the government is not going to go away; it will only become more tyrannical. But in a major nationwide disaster or social upheaval their resources would be spread thin and in many areas there may be little or no governmental (police or military) presence for an extended period of time.

      Holding the high-ground and open view of approach is always an advantage; giving advance warning of what is coming thus allowing time to respond accordingly. Remember if we prepare for the worst everything else becomes easy. The Wolf Pack will be ready…

      • MD, While probably not applicable to everyday life I agree that having an eye out for the worst makes sense. All things being equal I always strive to control the high ground and have the other guy in the open.

  13. MD do you have a barb wire fence at the crest of that hill in the tree line? That’s what I would suggest. Hard to pick up in the day or at night. Doesn’t scream someone lives here if it’s in the tree line. If SHTF part 2 you can use it as a start to a barrier or rig it for sound to warn of intruders who may be going places they shouldn’t.

  14. Thomas The Tinker says:

    MD: I spent around 2 hours looking a sat photos of property in southern Ohio today…. two to go take a walk around next week end. Funny how yuz guy in here have me picking out the plots of land with the more….. useful.. terrain features. FYI: Acreage is going for around 2k$. Less with no cleared land. More.. the more road frontage available.

    Question…… Would any of you in here pay somebody to spend the week end in a log and sandbag bunker…. with meals and all the standard FBO facilities provided? Just wanna know…

    • I live in south western ohio. Are you looking on the south east or west? I am looking for something in the ball park of 40 miles east of cincy (right now 30 miles north of cincy)

      If you’d like to chat I am at [my name above] at

  15. Nice Place.

  16. Man, if you went earth-sheltered and never tapped into the power line, you’d be really invisible. Then again, if your trailer is parked there, you could be okay with a low ranch.

  17. Beautiful. I am very jealous. The views alone make it worth whatever you payed. No one will sneak up on you. Also, very nice that there is power there.

    I’m shopping in the Southern reaches of West Virginia right now, hoping to find something similar.

    If you are building a home there, it would be great to see the progress and follow along. Just a suggestion.

  18. Charlie (NC) says:


    I’d much rather try to defend 200 yards of road front than a 1/2 acre lot in a subdivision somewhere! As I’m sure you know the size of your tract gives you some tacticle advantage. You have the opportunty to “shape the battlefield” and force intruders to come in across your firing lines. Only the most savy attackers will see the traps and find a way to work around them and if you find yourself being approached by the likes of Navy Seals or Airborne Rangers you just better hope they are friends not foes.

  19. Chonte' in MD says:

    hello wolf pack!!, i just stumbled upon something and wanted to share. MD has a nice set up with plenty of land but for those of us without the space i found this cool window planter, these things are pricey but…. now the best part is that the website gives you instructions on how to make your own out of soda bottles and a pump!!

  20. AZ Rookie Prepper says:

    Looks nice from several perspectives, defensible, nice scenery, good timber, remoteness, etc….an inspiration to me. Thanks for sharing M.D., you continue to teach and lead the wolfpack towards better survival.

  21. First, plant more trees, congest the area as much as possable in a natural way, second, put up a simple barbed wire fence as if to keep cattle in. Third, on the other side of the fence plant blackberry bushes and plant them THICK! Not only will they roduce good berrys but they will create cover and a natural barrier between you and the road. All other protective avenues should a large volume weapon(like something belt fed or an AK variant with a drum or two) and sniper weapons. The barrier should slow any onslaught, the vaolume weapon can lay down suppresive fre to keep enemies at bay and the sniper weapon can pick off straglers that make it thru the defensive perimeter. And in the event that none of that is needed, you can always pick lots of blackberrys to sale and make cobblers and such:)

    • Nor' Country says:

      I’m with Spook45… I like the blackberry idea… In my area, the rasberries and wild roses do quite well… I made some simple saw horse looking structures from saplings I cleared from my land and put those on top of the rose bushes to encourage the roses to grow a bit bigger… Sort of a backwoods trellis support system to get them to grow at least 3-4 feet high…

      • charlie (NC) says:

        click this link and look at the interactive video. Click around until you see the overhead view of the entrance road showing the choke points set up to expose intruderes to fireing lanes.\

        It doesn’t have to be fancy like this place. You just have to use the terrain you are given to your advantage.

  22. Very nice piece of property. Reminds me of when I lived in the western part of North Carolina. High ground with one way in and one way out. It appears that it is very defensible. Keep up the good work.

  23. You might find a hedge out of Osage Orange a good way to secure at least some of the area next to the roads.

    It is a very low key and old fashion way of limiting access to pretty much everything but tanks and bulldozers once it is up and going that I believe can be pulled out of the pages of American history and used to mitigate some of our modern problems.


  24. Harleybagger says:

    did u use flex base to build your road..did it cost u mega..i have to do the same for my road..iam saving..

  25. It looks like you have the advantage of some high ground there, and Sun Tzu warns against attacking up hill. You should be fine.
    My thoughts would lend more toward the ability to escape and evade and return if an overwhelming force were to present itself, no individual can defend long against that.
    Your ability to see movement along the road and other avenues of approach is the most important thing that you have going for you.
    Happy New Year all.

  26. Uncle Charlie says:

    Sorry I even doubted you MD. I’m used to perusing real estate ads bragging about road frontage which I abhor, but 200 yards along a gravel road is a quantum leap from 200 yards along blacktop highway and you definitely have the high ground. My apologies for jumping to conclusions. And a nice view to boot. Congratulations!

  27. md, looks like crooked river ranch near blood butte texas, mr.wilson. tell rose in santa rio hello for me, i think i’m going down to mexico 🙂

  28. WOW!

    What a wonderful lay out! I especially like the embankment from the road, it employs that most simple of logic, “it is hard to attack running uphill”. Of course the former Marine in me thinks that this is also a great place to embed some claymores for defense of the road, but that is just me.
    Wish I had the resources to acquire an estate of this quality.

  29. Prep Now [so.fl.] says:

    Your place looks like some of my old stomping grounds east of Jackson and west of Nashville. Close to Chickasaw.
    That being said, a thick hedge of Bougainvillea about 100 yards away from the house makes a nice “slow em down” natural break, pretty to look at too or maybe a thicket hedge of blackberry canes for food resource also.
    We have a plant with 2-3″ triple thorns, fast growing, edible fruit, thick and intertwined called a “tropical strawberry” I have begun hedging. It is brutal to trim when dressed for it, let alone wander into it. As a foundation planting it is great for keeping the teens from climbing out of windows at night, not that I have EVER had that issue!

  30. This is exactly where I pictured you living. I think it is one of the best if not the best places to be, in term of remoteness and from a defensive standpoint. You said that your property backs up against a National Forest, so you might get some traffic if others leave their homes and find shelter in the forest. Also do you have a tree blind? I just got my husband a 15′ deer blind for hunting…I think it would also make a good “look out stand” during a SHTF scenario. Our property is pretty flat and heavily wooded, so getting a view higher up makes it easier to see all of our land better.

    • Prep Now [ so.fl.] says:

      We’re all flat around here as well. I do like the tree stand idea. We also have some huge oaks, well over 60ft. Maybe I’ll build us a tree house.

      • That’s pretty cool about the Oaks. We don’t have any trees that could support a tree house here, just mainly Bull Pines and they just grow really tall but have crappy branches. I have a great design for our tree fort we want to build, It will be free standing with one of our biggest trees going up through the middle of it. In the mean time, while that is in the works, we will get our feet wet with the tree blind.
        I also have a constant worry about people who might have gotten word of those of us who live out in the country and know that we are heavily armed….I wonder what I would do if they just set fire to my property and what I could do to prepare against that, if anything.

        • charlie (NC) says:

          I think most of the Zombie types will never make it far out of the cities They will kill each other off in the early days of a colapse. You saw what they did for the chance to buy $200 dollar sneakers. You can imagine what they would do in the cities to businesses and each other for something to eat. Most of them, if armed at all, will have very little ammo and mostly hand guns. What folks in the country would have to worry about is organized groups at some point a few weeks after the colapse. Since they will have limited fuel supplies don’t look for them to go 5 or 10 miles out in the country to hit one or two places unless they feel like those places are major scores with low defenses.

          MD should be relatively secure except for folks in his general area who might try to take what he has. I like the idea of making a place look run down and abandoned from the road and hiding the actual living quarters and storage somewhere in the back out of sight. Also it might pay to make entrance roads look abandoned and rarely traveled or to make switch backs in them that makes them appear to dead end from the road.

  31. MD: Nice Property.
    The property we are looking at looks a lot like this in the Fall. Winter, not so much (covered in mud and snow).
    I saw a comment about using Blackberry bushed as a hedge. Up here berry plants draw humans and bears. I’m thinking about some of those really ugly bushes with really long thorns and grow really thick. Berry’s on the backside maybe, but not where they might be seen from the road and “invite” a curious berry picker.

    • PS. The second picture looks like a GREAT location for an LP/OP. Sand Bags, old wood, and evergreen bushes (if applicable for your area).

  32. That works and a close look at the dirt road tells me it is used by local and does not have a high traffic count. From what I can see it has been some time since the county run a road grader down the road. As for the blackberries, that sounds great if they can not be seen from the road and you can keep the goats out of them. My “deer camp” is situated much the same, we can see the traffic but they can not see us on the hill. Good Job MD

  33. Two words:
    Punji sticks.
    one more word
    art of redirection:
    put scattered junk cars up on blocks around the property, old underwear,longjohns, etc on drooping clothes lines – leave up permantly. scatter around some old rusty stinky burn barrels. have a outhouse visible from the road. old funiture, tires (lots of tires) and beer cans to round out the decore.

    hey, works for me. I hardly get any visitors

  34. psychological warfare:
    have infrared trip wires around the property line.
    When tripped by people walking through, have hidden recorder play “banjo music” and hog squellin’ noises.

    *these and other great ideas brought to you by…
    LurkerBob home defense services.

    • breadmomma says:

      lmaof….I just can imagine it right now….ding da ding ding ding ding ding ding ding…da dada da da da da……bling bling bling bling blllling bling….( bango music…..)…

  35. From the pictures, it looks like your place has the best defense characteric possible – it’s not noticeable. If someone does happen past your place and it looks just like the hundreds of acres of national forest around it, they will most likely just keep on going. The best way to survive any fight is to just avoid the fight in the first place.

    • Harold Dean says:

      Words of extreme wisdom. This has been my advice all along. Most of these sites are abundant with talk of MBR, main battle rifles, thousands of rounds of ammunition, etc. I don’t want anyone to know I am even there. After the indigent outspread crowd have either died off, killed each other, etc, there should not be much else to worry about until the organized gangs team up and start their looting and killing. By that point, I hope to have become part of an organized effort to repulse and destroy same. My biggest worry is family members who think the government and the world in general owe them a living and perpetual protection from anything bad happening. When all of that collapses and they are not prepared, they will come looking for me since they know I am resourceful, prepared and have skills they do not nor ever will take the effort to accrue. Hate to sound so callous but in the survival only the most fit, cunning and callous will be on the list.

  36. charlie (NC) says:

    I think some of you are missing the point. You can’t fortify a place like MD’s enough to keep folks out and making it look fortified just invites the worst of the worst to try and get in. The idea is to create buffers that appear natural or appear to have some other purpose such a livestock fences. These buffers are designed to allow folks to approach and give them the impression that they can just walk right up. Instead they are being herded into firing lanes where they are fully exposed an away from your blind spots.

    Now try to make your camp as hidden and unassuming as possible so that intruders don’t have much interest in going in to begin with and those that do will approach without fear. Add in some devices (trip wires, electronic devices, whatever) that alert you to their presence and you have the upper hand.

    If you try to fortify it you are attracting attention and at the same time creating buffers that your attackers can hide behind. Sooner or later they will find your weak spot and come in in force with their eyes wide open and you are trapped.

    • Excellent post. You should have stomped your boot three times before writing this.

    • riverrider says:

      charlie, i’m with you on all of that, but my location is not “concealable” per se, so i must fortify. hopefully, they will be discouraged by what they see as a hard target and move on to softer ones. our ‘hood is a dead end country road, interlocking fires over about 90% of the terrain, planning nice surprises for the 10%…might not keep a large determined group out, but what are the odds of that group even finding our little perimeter? slim, i’d say, as we plan to cut the road leading in miles away in an impassable rift. they’ll be on foot, tired,hungry and in range. sic semper tyrannis.

      • charlie (NC) says:

        riverrider my comments were geared toward a site like MD’s. Certainly you can’t conceal all encampments. I own some land that is fairly remote, near a small town. It’s the old family farm but it’s a long slender tract with over 1500 feet of paved road frontage on a tract of only about 80 acres and 40 of that is swamp land. If I ever get around to (get the money) to build a “Hide” on the farm I’ll probably dig in to the steep bank between the field and the swamp and hope not too many locals find it. In my case it would be a fall back position and a prep storage, root cellar sort of an arrangement. It’s not an ideal site by any means. The only good thnig about it is the swamp in nearly impossible to cross. When I was a kid I spent a lot of time playing in that swamp and I’ve spent litteraly hours trying to go a few hundred feet across it, sinking past my knees in thick, sticky black mud with almost every step even though I tried to walk on fallen limbs and cypress tree stumps.

        • riverrider says:

          charlie, i like the sound of that. having the swamp blocking an avenue of approach/line of drift is awesome. i would prefer to hide, but the area doesn’t lend itself to that very well. i just had a trespasser problem yesterday. an out-of-towner that has permission from one neighbor thinks that gives him free reign to the hood. he may be a problem during tshtf. happy new year.

          • Hunker-Down says:


            Congratulations! You had your first sheeple visit.

          • charlie (NC) says:

            For years we had problems with the neighbors thinking they had free reign over our farm as if it was public land. There was a vehicle path along the woodline that continued out one end of the farm to the road and there was another field road that came in through the middle of the farm. I finally told the tennant farmer to plow up the roads and farm every inch of land from the highway to the woods. Now I can’t even get to the back of the farm except on foot when there are crops in the field but it keeps the neighbors out. Except of course the hunters and the guys with metal detectors.

            Let me ask you guys something. If someone finds something on my land with a metal detector who does it belong to? The answer is obvious…. ME! Yet those sob’s go on your land and if they find anything they put it in their pocket and never say a word about it. If you approach them they say “oh I was just metal detecting” and proceed to tell everyone in town how mean you are for running them off.

            • SurvivorDan says:

              That’s all a prepper needs, eh? ‘Treasure’ hunters to find and interfere with early warning mechanisms, set off booby traps (of course that resolves that trespasser), discover any caches, find your hidden fall-back bunker, escape pipe/tunnel from your cabin, ad infinitum. What to do with those guys?
              There is that swamp…….. 😉

            • Charlie (NC) are you able to set up barbed wire or post no trespassing signs? Even one strand with no trespassing signs spread out should meet the requirements for trespassing. As you can afford it, add strands of barbed wire to surround the property. I’d start with the area they hit the most.

            • charlie (NC) says:

              Jarhead. other than plowing out the roads haven’t done anything to try and stop them. For the most part they don’t do any harm. I don’t live there now but my 93 year old mother lives there alone. The same folks that treat the farm as if it was theirs also treat my mom very well and I want to keep it that way.
              When the time comes to stop it I can and will but thanks for the advice.

              I called the law on one metal detector guy. I called and gave them his license plate number. I told the sheriff to tell him I didn’t know who it was and didn’t want to know and didn’t want any hard feelings but they were disturbing my mother by prowling around.
              The sheriff’s deputy handled it exactly as I asked and sent me word that the guy said he was sorry. Hopefully the word got around. Since I’m not there I don’t know if they are still at it or not. The whole concept of people using metal detectors on other peoples land without permission just generally chaps my butt.

            • Charlie NC, I was thinking if you and the metal detector guy while fishing at a local lake.
              A man with a metal detector wearing a Marine veteran cap struck up a conversation and shared a couple cold ones.
              He told me many times he thinks he runs into Mexican and Canadian currency and slugs (disk shape metal sized between quarters to half dollars.

              You could buy some bp musket balls and drop them outside your property to send him looking elsewhere lol.
              I would suggest finding a company that sells slugs and stick them all over the place in the ground, after they pick up a few, they will go somewhere else.

              You happen to have that land on an old Civil War battle field by chance? He was probably looking for Civil War items.

            • charlie (NC) says:

              Jarhead, I don’t think they are finding anything on our place. There was certainly civil war activity in our area but I don’t believe there were any battles close by.
              Most likely if there are artifacts on our land it is indian stuff and that’s not likely to be metal. However, there is a cemetary on the farm, hidden under some big magnolia trees that date back prior to the civil war. I sure would hate for someone to be poking around those grave sites.

              You make a good point about “salting” the place with junk to keep folks from looking. I’ll keep that in mind.

  37. blindshooter says:

    Pictures rarely do grade/scale justice. I can see why you spent some time and money on fixing the drive. The road looks like a logging road, is that how it started?

  38. Hunker-Down says:


    Nice property. I’m sure you will delegate sentry duty to inanimate gadgets all around. As you get time and opportunity check for wildlife that may trip something.

    As a teenager I lived on a flat farm a zillion miles from everybody. Usually, the only traffic past our house was the school bus and the mailman’s car. Both of those came by at a predetermined time. If any other car came down ‘our’ road, we were on high alert.
    So, if I were in your place I would be interested in why the road was there, where will it take people, what kind of people, are there other homes on that road and where does it end and why does it end where it does. Are there church summer camps, coon hunters, poachers or moonshiners in the area?

    Think about doing your range practice several miles away from your property, to keep the advertising down.
    Is there enough renewable wood growing there to service your heating and cooking needs?

    I know ti’s a lot of work but I’ll bet you are enjoying laying out everything.

  39. Great looking property MD! I wish I has a retreat property like that. Very dependable. I especially like it being on high ground and being next to national forest has sooooo many advantages.
    Ditto on booby traps and other barriers. Looks like motion detectors and a systems like MURS. radios would b good there.
    Someone already mentioned natural barriers like blackberries. Maybe bamboo would be an option as well.

    Thomas the Tinker…I have lived in a couple of different areas of Southern Ohio. There are some awesome retreat locations there.

  40. M.D.
    That looks like a piece of paradise! I believe it to be defensible if you use a combination of preparations, constructions, and tactics. Especially if you have advance FO points and defensible (preferably hidden) fallback positions. One other thing that would help is if you had a small team you could trust, and that was one thing I wanted to ask about. How successful have you been at developing a small group (community perhaps?) that is actively helping you build out the retreat, contribute to it’s preps (and what they will individually need to eat etc.) and generally knowing who will show up when needed? I have a small number (very small) of people I trust that have a place, but finding people that actively contribute (no freeloaders either with work or preps) and having similar ideals has certainly been a challenge. But I believe the saying that ‘no man is an island’ and think there are many benefits of having support ‘if’ it is the right people. Curious how your efforts have succeeded on this front.
    BBQ and Bullets Homestead (outside of Austin TX)

    • Harold Dean says:

      You state a very important and mostly overlooked point of view. If you have a large enough place, the common mindset is to give up none of it thus requiring a group to hold it against intruders. I like the idea of hiding rather than confronting and making my hidey hole very difficult to find. I have no one I can trust to either lend a hand, help prepare or even believe in the necessity of doing so. My own immediate family is on that page completely and my preparations which can not be disguised are regarded as back up for their needs when they squander their resources. The typical mindset around here was expressed by a neighbor who came by as I was tilling up the garden patch to talk and I offered to till him up a patch also. He replied that he was too lazy to do that kind of crap. When I asked him what would happen when the welfare checks, food stamps and food banks were no longer available. He replied that he would just steal it from those who had it. When I pointed to the little sign on my garage doors that says “This property is insured by Smith and Wesson”, he remarked quickly that he would never steal from his neighbors. Thank God he moved last fall.

  41. Nor' Country says:

    Sort of off topic, but what is the water like there? Are you planning on having a well?

  42. You’ve got some nice property there M.D. ,look’s defendable to me !
    One question – in the photo showing the hills a mile off { I’m guessing by the shadows ,they’re SE of you} the photo shows neighbor’s , are they your closest ? I’m very happy for you Sir Pack Alpha Male {SPAM}….LOL

  43. May you never have to defend it. I hope you have a lifetime of fun times and many wonderful memories on it.

  44. Nice setup. I would recommend getting an FPV aerial reconnaissance drone to cover the area from the air.

    I am currently researching the systems and plan on building a full, ground controlled, cickpit system that will be able to easily cover my six acres. It will be pretty much like having my own Predator drone, minus the armament and satellite comms.

  45. I’d physically lay down on the ground and find the best fields of fire (with interlocking fires) and pre-dig fighting positions. The easiest way is dig a hole with a backhoe and drop in a 4 foot wide metal culvert (open side up) and add drainage and a grenade sump in the bottom. Sand bag it around the edges, cover it with plywood, and plant bushes around it for concealment. It’ll last forever and be hidden by this summer. Then I’d take the rolls of thin wire (about 800 feet per roll) I bought for $5 at an auction this past summer and I’d look at my avenues of approach, and wire some of them up with trip wires, and make plans for wiring the others after SHTF. Use trip wires, brush, fences, water obstacles, fallen trees, etc. to channel anyone approaching into a “kill zone” that you can cover with your heavy weapons. Obstacles still have to be covered, but can initially be covered only with an OP/LP and if anyone tries to break through the obstacles, have your backup force respond with supporting fires.

    Look at modern military manuals, European fortresses and the colonial period forts for good ideas on using the terrain for defense.

  46. M.D. it looks great, the least conspicuous the better in my opinion.
    If you were to start setting up defenses, natural would be best such as plants or berries with thorns. Boulders make great natural barricades.
    Rail road ties just off the road a couple feet to channel them in and they won’t see them until its too late.
    Engineer stakes, landmarks or certain trees marked so that only you would see them to mark known distances so you can adjust elevation and windage on your iron sights or scope.
    Along the tree line where you want it to look as natural as possible you can strand barbed or any steel wire or 40 pound test fishing line about 6″ – 12″ above ground as tangle foot to someone down a bit.
    So many ideas, to say it can’t be defended is wrong, anything can be defended, what you have and what you make use of determines for how long.

    • Hunker-Down says:

      Jarhead 03,

      Would you use the same test fishing line for stringing cans containing rocks, used as an alarm?

      • HD, I have to admit I have used them on camping and hiking trips when in bear country or concerned that two legged animals are in the area. They work as long as there is no wind or you are checking every sound and start dropping your guard. My partner at work who was in Nam with the 101st said they used to use them on the perimeter with some success.

        I also have made early warning devises with fishing line and “party poppers” those plastic devises that have a pull string, they pop and shoot out confetti. I have removed the confetti and they work. Downside is if someone thinks they are being shot at and opens fire.

    • AZ Rookie Prepper says:

      Another idea for “channeling” vehicles is extra deep ditches, with a steep slope on the road side and an angled slope on the outside so they cannot be used as firing positions from someone working against the inside of the perimeter. Large rocks or downed trees as barriers are ok, but can be used as frontal cover for someone approaching the perimeter. Tanglefoot is good for slowing approaching people down, but are dangerous to wildlife also, I’ve seen deer and bear get caught up in it and die. Each has advantages and disadvantages. If you make it too hard to get in….it is also pretty hard to get out. Planning obstacles requires careful consideration on multiple “fronts”. 🙂

      • AZ, true, every plan has its drawbacks. I wasn’t thinking ditches because the potential to be used as a fighting hole providing cover for them. I was thinking boulders about the size of basket balls to obstruction than larger providing cover for them. I hate hiding behind rocks lol they tend to crack and fling rock projectiles. Happened at 29 Palms a few times lol.

        • AZ Rookie Prepper says:

          Jarhead 03, with ditches, the trick is to make the roadside portion at a steep angle, the other side of the ditch at a shallow angle, giving you (the defender) a look into the ditch. Yes, basketball sized rocks would provide enough of an obstacle that most vehicles wouldnt cross them easily, people too for that matter. I much prefer the ideas listed earlier about “natural” barriers, clumps of thorny bushes et al. Provides cover for small (huntable) critters, provides food for the landowner, very effective at keeping others out. Additionally, can be planted in such a way as to keep others from seeing a way in while still allowing you a way out (if you choose). 29 stumps…ah….memories of 115 degrees in the shade (if you could find shade)….never actually went to 29 stumps, did go to NTC a couple of times. Might as well be the same location, they have different names but the same lumps and bruises.

  47. charlie (NC) says:

    Personally I would prefer to use devices that alert me to the intruders without letting them know that I know.

    • Hunker-Down says:

      Unfortunately I’ll have to run a low budget kill zone.

      • charlie (NC) says:


        I’m pretty much low budget too. I was talking about using things like trip wires but set up so that they created an alert I could see or hear at my location but not necessarily heard by the intruder or everyone in the neighborhood. Also there are electronic devices available now that are relatively cheap that
        would work as well. Here is one example.

        • Hunker-Down says:


          That’s a good idea. I could put the can of rocks in my bedroom. LOL. Maybe a line set to trip a mouse trap, where the trap was in the garage or below an open window where it would be heard. Putting the alarm at my end instead of at ‘their’ end is an important point. Thanks.

        • Will 2 Live says:

          Weather and limited battery life will render most electronic devices useless in a short time. The best and most economical traps are covered pits with spiked plywood in the bottom placed on obvious footpaths to your home or shelter. Provided of course that you have a rural retreat. Your chances of survival in the cities is slim to none. All you need is a shovel, plywood a long, not easily bent nails. The screams of anyone who fell in would make a sufficient alarm that doesn’t require electricity and would immobilize at least one intruder.

          Another low tech alarm is in fact rocks in cans. Place them around your shelter and run a couple hundred feet of wire from each can to trip spots around your property. If one is tripped then the can of rocks will fall at your shelter alerting you to the presence of intruders. There will be false alarms due to animals but that can be an advantage as you would be alerted to a potential food source. Cost to build is practically zero.

          Anything electronic will be useless in no time in a sustained survival situation.

  48. a nice pecse of property md but if you are just one man,even with all kinds of signal devices to let you know where youer intruders are you can only defend one position at a time,depending on the steranth of the opposition you could be over runed,hope your into foxholes,enjoy the plasce,but dount count on ananimity in a shtf event too manny pepole know you,lets hope for raptuer before dissaster.

  49. Well, if it’s just one guy against many, then it could be a tough fight. There are auto-detect and fire systems that could be deployed. I’m talking about autonomously controlled gun turrets.

    I still recommend a means of r/c0 aerial surveillance for real-time battlefield intel.

    • Mr. Black, there are systems on line that work like fire control systems that deploy pepper spray. Problem is pre shtf they could fall in booby trap laws in states that have them

      • Will 2 Live says:

        The easy way around booby trap laws in my case anyways was to dig the holes and prepare the spike boards ahead of time and then I’ll just put them in the holes and cover them up when I know the local situation has deteriorated to lawlessness. Having pits on your property isn’t illegal, neither is setting up the basic workings of trip wire devices, just add the wire and lethal portions later. Once local law breaks down and law enforcement has begun abandoning their posts then set your various types traps which are already pretty much set up already.

        The last thing law enforcement personnel will be worrying about when the s*it hits the fan is handing out booby trap charges and you probably wont need them until the police run for home anyways so don’t worry about it.

  50. Will 2 Live says:

    A good strategy when dealing with road frontage on your survival property is concealment. If your property appears to be a vacant lot from the road then marauders are likely to just pass by. Place your shelter well back and out of sight from the road and keep wear on your driveway to a minimum.

    Aside from the illusion of it just being an empty patch of ground it would be wise to dig some concealed firing/observation positions as it seems you have a good line of sight in both directions. Stock your fox holes with molotov cocktails for any vehicles that would happen to pull onto your property and cover the holes with thatched branches and leaves to keep them hidden. Booby trap any foot paths to your shelter on all sides, 6 foot long waist deep spike pits would work well. The painful screams of anyone who fell in would alert you to intruders and the sight of seeing one of their own impaled on spikes would cause panic and confusion in most marauders allowing you time to pick them off.

    Another thing to consider would be to drop a few large trees across the entrances to the road where it meets other roads. This would deter most in vehicles who would likely just carry on looking for an easier road to try.

    In the end making the property seem vacant will be your best bet as opposed to getting yourself in a firefight.

  51. I am new to this site and have a few questions. First, let me say that I am very pleased that the posts on this site are not “over the top” nutso statements. I read rational statements made by forward thinking, concerned folks.
    To my question. I live on 80 acres of prairie with the house and out buildings on the corner of the property with section lines (rural roads) running on two sides. The house is no more than 100 ft from either road. To compound things, although my property is rural it is only 6 miles from the north side of town. My fear is that when TSHTF my property is is going to be a target for gangs and individuals heading out of town or foraging for survival. Moving is not an option as I will have all my supplies stored in and around there, AND I have elderly inlaws in poor health that cannot BO and need attention.
    1) What are some ideas for defending this property?
    2) What is the number one thing you would do? (please don’t say “move” lol)

    “Chance favors the prepared mind” Steven Segal Movie

    • charlie (NC) says:

      PSSUPT, There are a few details that influence-control thoughtful answer. Without asking for the name of the town unless you wanted to say and I wouldn’t, we need to know how big a town, how far from a major city, what city if you don’t mid saying, what the demographics of the city are and/or what state if you feel comfortable saying. You are obviously in an area with basically flat land so being back off the road would not be a trememdous advantage but it is some. Is your 80 acres a strip along the side of a section or is it the corner of a section? If
      you have the corner of a section and your 80 acres is basically in a square and not a long rectangle then your back corner should be about 1800 feet from either road. You might want to think about building something that looks like an equipment or livestock shed back there that is actually a hardened hide. It doesn’t have to be that big. For that matter a couple of over the road shipping rail boxes, connex boxes, ISBU containers or whatever you call them would be more than sufficient.

      You could put to 40′ long containers side by side, cut a hole connecting them and have someone with an excavator dig a big, deep, wide ditch around them with a removable walkway or driveway across the ditch. IF you put the excess dirt along the side of the ditch you would be somewhat concealed and have a protective “moat”. After a year of letting stuff grow up on the mound of dirt you’d be pretty well hidden back there.

    • Dang, your property is pretty good… The best you could wish for is some trees and rough terrain.

      Do you have a basement? Or perhaps something that is closer to crawlspace? Actually, anything installed in the name of tornado paranoia would probably be good in a thug siege.

      Part of my advice would be to install a hidden tornado shelter on the far edge of your property, and then hide some sort of cache under that. In deference to your elders, they are now part of the house. Your life is a hair more than them and possessions combined. The bolt-hole may fuel any strategic decision; whether it be to run, wait, or fight.

      Another thing you could do is to cultivate edible weeds, assuming that your land is fallow. It’s not really defense, but food plants that don’t look like food are a good standby.

    • Hunker-Down says:


      Do you have any outbuildings? How close to the house?
      Could you and your family spend a week in one of those?
      If yes, stock water, supplies and ammo there.

      Do you have any fences? How close to the house? Move vehicles in spots between buildings and fences to build a kill zone. Mark the yardage. Shoot the yardage signs for target practice.

      Plant thorny berry bushes as a living fence the gangs will want to avoid.
      Set fishing line trip lines with cans containing rocks as an alarm system.
      Get big dogs.
      Put up a sign, “beware of mean bull”.

      Go to town and act irrational so you develop a reputation of someone to stay away from. Answer the door with a pistol in your hand (pointed at the gfround) to enhance your reputation, but remember to be nice to the Wolf Pack.

  52. charlie (NC) says:

    I forgot to ask, is either of the roads past your house a main route to or from your town to a larger town or city or is it just a rural section road. If it’s just section roads how far off of the main roads are you? Also how well do you know your neighbors and how many neighbors do you have?

  53. Good Suggestions All!
    To answer (vaguely) some of the logistics questions. As you might imagine after reading the advise on this blog, I am leery of providing too much info online. I live in the center of the country 6 six miles from a city (?) of 35,000. My roads are not main roads but section lines. My nearest nieghbor is 1 mile away catty-corner on my section. My land is a half of a quarter or 1/4 mile by 1/2 mile. No fences as of yet, and all out buildings are 100 to 150 feet from the house.

    I like the suggestion about the hardened area deeper into my land, but would hate to give up the home in the case of an attack. I do have a basement and due to the previous house being destroyed by weather it is basically a hardened “bunker”.

    Even before I read this blog, my wife and I have discussed how in a time of emergency our place would be the “go-to” are for our families to try and reach. Although this means that I have to plan for extra demands on supplies, I also will have “many hands to make light work” in the gardening and defense department. This is an excellent blog and I really appreciate your suggestions. BTW, if you COULD figure out where I am (it may be possible based on the info), just bare in mind that I ‘ll have a nice suprise waiting for anyone who happens to “drop by”. LOL

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