Thoughts on Urban Survival

Discussion in 'Wilderness & Survival Skills' started by B Griffin, Apr 25, 2009.

  1. misanthropist

    misanthropist

    Jan 28, 2007
    I think plenty about urban survival...I live in a city of 2 million people with only a couple of roads in and out.

    For me to leave means crossing a minimum of 2 bridges, although one is so small it would probably be forgotten in the event of any major unrest. Still, seeing as the most likely threat here is earthquakes, I have to be prepared to sit things out for a while. I do have a boat, but then we would just be on the other side of a huge river...still in the city, with no car. If we are both at home, then it would be pretty plausible to hit the bridge and get out of town while things are still moving, but any delay would mean we were stuck here.

    I am pretty well set up to do just that...we have a good stockpile of food and water (over a month) and our house used to be a welding shop, and it is HEAVILY fortified! Think 5/16ths bars on all the windows, doors you would need a vehicle-mounted ram to get though, steel roof and steel on the bottom 3 feet of most of the walls, etc. If we want to keep people out, they are staying out.

    That leaves getting through the day-to-day difficulties.

    Well, we're pretty set up for social unrest...I would not want to be the guy who comes for me or Erin, that's for sure. She is a pretty die-hard revolver person, but finally this year has picked an auto she likes - coincidentally the same one show earlier in this thread, the two-tone CZ-75b. I was always a 1911 guy, but finally switched to a Glock 20. I am still using M14s as my primary rifle, though...have a few of those (as well as some other stuff too).

    So I feel pretty well set up in the event of any of the probable disasters around here. My concerns mainly relate to getting to Erin in the event that an earthquake happens while she is in the middle of town or something. But I don't feel there is much I can do to mitigate this short of getting her to carry a HAM radio, which is not likely. She bikes most of the time anyway so she will still be capable of getting home or close to it, and I have a like-minded (and, scarily, better-equipped and trained) friend just on the other side of the bridge she would have to cross to get home, so there is a good rescue plan there.

    One thing I was thinking as I was looking through a lot of the gang photos here...if you have to have a gang problem, you really couldn't be much better off.

    The "white shirt" guys and the "orange shirt" guys...might as well be the "neon bullseye" gang from my perspective. I would thank them for picking those uniforms if you get the chance!

    Finally, as it stands right now I can not legally (and consequently do not) carry a handgun - nor do I feel like I need to at this time. However, in the event of major social unrest, I would reevaluate my commitment to the laws of this country. Fortunately at this time I do not believe that I have any great need to carry, although I do know people who feel differently.

    On the other hand there is usually an M14 in my 4runner.
     
  2. Fonly

    Fonly

    Sep 24, 2006
    Exactly, If SHTF, I would be strapped to the max:D

    And honestly, everyone else has a 12gauge in the truck, which we can still do all the time, so its not so bad.
     
  3. B Griffin

    B Griffin Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 22, 2007
    Glad you chimed in, we think a lot alike.

    And I agree...they do make themselves easy to spot. It's the guys in the new Navigators and Escalades wearing suits and ties that they ride with that I am interested in now.
     
  4. misanthropist

    misanthropist

    Jan 28, 2007
    Yeah, I have not had nearly as much time to participate here recently as I would like...but this thread is just too much to my liking to skip!

    Suits and ties is worse for sure...one of the only upsides to gang culture is how plainly the threats get marked out!

    Here in Vancouver there is currently a gang war going on, but so far you'd have to be pretty unlucky to get caught in the crossfire and very few people outside the gang scene seem to have been hurt...hopefully it keeps on like that but I am not super hopeful to be honest. I suspect it is only a matter of time before the general level of violence increases and the collateral damage increases along with it.
     
  5. B Griffin

    B Griffin Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 22, 2007
    Glad your liking it. Something happened recently to draw my attention back into the inner city....said I'd never go back into another one of those but...given the nature of my wife's work it's not about me at this point. The river plays a big part in things here...when I'm at work or home I'm on one side of it and when Lisa is at work or at school she is on the other side of it. So this all started from me wanting to REALLY know the lay-out of everything and every possible rout to anywhere pertinent to my situation. Along the way I was looking at available resources as one never knows what they will be dealing with in an emergency. Then, after seeing what I have seen it has also become a study of all of the inhabitants of every area between here and there...I wanted to find out who could be helpful, who would be neutral, and who would either be best just avoided...or perhaps even just popped and moved past. In an actual all out "failure" situation initially the only laws will be one's own laws.

    Here we've had a couple of drive-by shootings that hit other than their intended target in the past. One was at the Theatre center beside the park in the first of this thread.
     
  6. B Griffin

    B Griffin Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 22, 2007
    Earlier I went back down to the park to get a cup of coffee and see what the situation was tonight. I saw something new this time around.


    There was a nice full moon out.

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    There was a more than normal police presence again; there was one stationary directly across the road from the usual whity tighty “camps”, and two roving. I’m wondering if this will be a new trend. If so it’s a good one because the usual camps were empty

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    This was the direct line of sight for the stationary officer….the main hangout for the gang on the weekends in previous weeks.

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    but then either shift change rolled around or something happened because while I was in Stone Cup getting coffee I saw the two rovers converge at a gas station outside the park and then head towards downtown. Then after I had been back in the park for a few the stationary one left as well. Then it was funny how white shirts came out of the woodwork. You can barely make out the guy and girl in these pics as it was at a distance, at night and they were moving. In the first one they are in the center of the picture with the girl on the right. Straight to the steps to sit a few and then head across the bridge.

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    Then a couple of minutes later there are two more back at the tables. This time they are two caucasian males. I may need to clarify something here…I am not racist at all, in fact when it comes to me assessing people personally I am about as color blind as one can get however data is just that…data, and these are the first two caucasian members who have caught my attention. One wearing a tie-dye t-shirt…there are a few “head-shops” in the area and there is sort of a retro-hippy group around here…and a bright white ball cap at the rail stretching up his arms and waving back and forth I think to openly signal his presence to the four that were in a white, four door, PT Cruiser at the back of the parking lot. The other, in a new bright white t-shirt and black pants, was pacing the street side of the patio. This looks like a new dynamic….while I can’t be completely positive yet (though from what I saw I’d bet a cup of coffee on it)… I think maybe it was an initiation of some new members, ones better suited to operate in this particular A.O., I think they have switched tactics and for lack of a better term…are “recruiting indigenous personnel”, although maybe just for the purpose of drawing attention I’m not sure yet. They hung out up on the patio for about 20 minutes just sort of pacing around in the bright light, but then soon as the police came back in to cruise the area they decided to quickly change locations.

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    and then two of the three that are the ones usually at the steps, in loose bright white t-shirts and a girl in a flowered dress jumped out of the back seat of the PT Cruiser and one got up front one went towards the darkness under the bridge and the girl got in another car and left. Shortly after the cops cruised through the parking lot and went on to the next one the cruiser left pretty quickly and went the same general direction the two from the patio had gone. I think I’m going to keep an eye on this for a few.
     
  7. Pinemarten

    Pinemarten

    1
    May 2, 2009
    Mistwalker,
    thanks for your time in posting this great thread and the photos!

    This thread has me started on thinking more and paying more attention.

    I like how you were able to identify patterns-the individuals wearing certain colors. Previously it used to be that gangs were wearing bandannas around the head but I believe that law enforcement paid too much attention to this so it seems to have changed. In urban areas I have noted folks wearing alike colors...had not paid much attention to it but now will. Another item was a bandanna hanging out of a back pocket except usually the bandanna was looped through a padlock to swing at someone.

    Please post more on your thoughts and experiences.

    Pinemarten
     
  8. B Griffin

    B Griffin Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 22, 2007

    Glad you're liking the thread. From what I am hearing there are similar patterns all over...not just here but in the UK, and Australia as well.

    For the last couple of weeks I have also been watching a different color…one a little more familiar, and a little closer to home than I like. These three have been doing a lot of walking back and forth between this plaza and some cheap apartments up the road. When they aren’t wearing red shirts they usually have them slung over their shoulders. On this particular day I saw these three…one in white shorts and black shirt, not recognizing him as having been in this group before, walk up the road to the apartments then came back down to meet the girl in this car, One got in the car and drove off while the other two circled around the building and went back by the railroad tracks that pass right by the apartments. I think maybe they are over here where there is less heat on their group using the cheap apartments as a place to set up make their crack.

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  9. newadventure

    newadventure

    284
    Jul 24, 2006
    Great thread - have been following with much interest. maybe already mentioned, but I would be careful watching/photographing. If they knew what you are doing, might put you in danger. peace. out. fred
     
  10. B Griffin

    B Griffin Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 22, 2007
    Thanks Fred, I'm glad you find it of interest. I know...that's why I don't get as many photos as I wish...some I don't take and others are blurry from trying to snap them too quickly. I'm gonna cease the hunting for a few and let things chill for a bit, it got a little close for comfort the other night...I may have been noticed and I need to let things in a particular area ride for a while unless it's just a target of oportunity that is just too easy.
     
  11. Skimo

    Skimo

    Mar 28, 2009
    Well I'm in a bit of a pickle should SHTF, I live on base, so me having a weapon at my house would probably be a no-no. on the other hand, I live on base where there is a good level of discipline.

    We used to live in the center of base, but moved to the edge of base with our house separated from a heavily trafficed road by only a chain link fence (I hate traffic, and not being able to have privacy in my back yard)

    So, it's a pickle, safety with other Military people and my personal weapon locked in the armory, or move off-base with my personal weapon and having to deal with unorganized graba$$tic people.

    I'd like to move closer to the center of base where at least my house wouldn't be open to gunfire... and further away from the publics eyes.

    I can have my wrist rocket and my knives in home at least. The house is far from defensible however due to low and large windows. no storm celler not even a tornado shelter :(

    There are new houses being built that are further inward from the base fence, not readily available to the publics eyes AND they are being built with tornado shelters. Hopefully nice big shelters with good venthilation and space dedicated for food/water.

    The area is similar to most bases/posts low income areas surround the base, no offence to anyone out there, but I barely trust some of the places right outside base during the day without a disaster, much less in a panic situation.

    I was thinking about selling my mini-14 and getting a pistol, but I'm liking the prospect of keeping my rifle for game and firepower down-range.
    Like someone else said, it's my family first and foremost, I'm daddy and hubby it's my duty to protect those that I love.
    Even living on base there are the undesirable populace of ex-gangsters, gangsters and "freaks" hopefully I'll never have to even punch another person as long as I live, and like many of you I think we all just want peaceably free lives.
     
  12. B Griffin

    B Griffin Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 22, 2007
    Interesting, I've been waiting on someone to chime in about the conditions of living on a military installation. Something tells me that if ts really does htf you will be too occupied to think much about anything. Good to think about the wife and kids before hand.
     
  13. B Griffin

    B Griffin Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 22, 2007
  14. shecky

    shecky

    May 3, 2006

    They're putting our meth dealers out of work! :grumpy:

    Actually, illegal immigrants have lower crime rates than natives. One of the interesting tidbits of information, as the population of illegal immigrants has approximately doubled during the 90s to the present to 12+ million, crime rates have dropped, particularly in big immigrant destination cities like Los Angeles and New York. In CA, incarceration rates for non natives (legal and illegal immigrants) are surprisingly low compared to their actual proportion of the population.
     
  15. B Griffin

    B Griffin Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 22, 2007
    Well...at least this way the majority of explosions will be somewhere besides next door.
     
  16. B Griffin

    B Griffin Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 22, 2007
    I know I have already touched on this but just wanted to go a little more in depth with the thought. For the city apartment dwellers that have no outbuildings and keep no saws, hatchets, machetes, or axes around there are some other improvisational options available that will work in a pinch. If you are like me, and you like to cook odds are that you already have some useful tools sitting right there on your kitchen counter top. Besides...food will still be a necessity right?


    Here are the ones I found particularly useful.
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    It only takes a little thinking outside the box to see that in a T.S.H.T.F. situation where you had to leave the comfort of your apartment and hit the woods or desert scrub for an extended period of time…perhaps even permanently… needing to survive off what you find… that they could be of help there to.
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    Even everyday kitchen knives are still just knives made for cutting. A carving knife can be used as a defensive weapon as well as to clear trails if needs be.
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    A good bread knife can even make a decent improvised saw for some materials, and is good for notching others.
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    A good fruit and veggie knife can also be used to bore holes in some materials
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    A good strong paring or utility knife can be used in firecraft making shavings
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    and a stout cleaver can be used to chop and split wood with if needs be.
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  17. B Griffin

    B Griffin Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 22, 2007
    The view from the deck at Stone Cup, one of my favorite coffee houses, last night. The "balcony" overlooks Coolidge Park. The strobes were so bright that I couldn't zoom in or past but there was a major gathering of white shirts on the bridge over looking the scene, and all around in the shadows on the ground observing, at one point some of the ones on the bridge were challenging someone to "Come On up here Motherf____r!!" still not sure exactly what happened. When I pulled in there was one police car sitting cross ways under the edge of the bridge with his strobes on, as I got out of the truck five more came flying in lights and sirens....then came a few more and an ambulance as I sat on the balcony drinking my coffee I counted a total of six cars in my sight. There were three more down where the Delta Queen is docked but the view of that is blocked by trees and a bridge. As I was leaving there were two parked up on the road at the entrance to the bridge.

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  18. B Griffin

    B Griffin Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 22, 2007
    I know some may think I am becoming preoccupied with this gang...but the thing is that six years ago when Lisa and I first started dating there was no gang activity at this park...it only started about a year ago and has worsened quickly
     
  19. sicily02

    sicily02

    Nov 23, 2005
    WOW I am learning more every time I look at this thread LOL Thanks

    Bryan
     
  20. B Griffin

    B Griffin Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 22, 2007
    Now do you see why I am thinking some custom kitchen cutlery?
     

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