Something has happened. For whatever reason an event has occurred that is so huge and terrible in scale you need to consider how to get from point A to point B, which is 50 miles away. Once there, what will be your mode of transportation for the foreseeable future? Depending on where you are at the time of this event will dictate some of your options, but what are all of the possible options for getting from one place to another over a distance?
There are many different options and all of them have their pros and cons. Each person will have to weight these out and determine the best course of action for themselves or their family.
- Walking – The oldest form of transportation is still the most reliable. Humans of today don’t walk near as much as humans from 200 years ago did, but it is still the most reliable and healthiest form. Walking can be quiet, which allows a person to hear what’s going on in the area around them much better. It allows for quick movement for cover if needed, and maintains a lower profile than any other mode of transport. The draw back to walking is that it will take time to get to your destination. You also can only transport what you can carry, and for the average human today that’s about 35 pounds of small stuff.
- Bicycles – People ride bicycles every day for exercise and some for transportation. There are many varieties from the light weight and slender endurance bicycles, to the rugged mountain bikes and varieties in between. They allow a person to move faster than walking and are almost as quiet as walking. Depending on the type of bicycle you may be limited on the terrain you can ride on though, which can be limiting. If needed you can find cover on a bicycle almost as well as walking, while carrying more stuff if you have bags for it. Bicycles do require routine maintenance and can wear quickly depending on how it’s used.
- Motorcycle – Motorcycles will get you from A to B very quickly. If the motorcycle is capable of incorporating storage bags you can carry more weight than on a bicycle, but size is still an issue. Unlike walking and bicycles, motorcycles can be very noisy and if you’re trying to get through unnoticed it is unlike to happen if someone is close by. While relatively easy to ditch for cover it is a heavier machine and not quite as nimble as a bicycle. Like the bicycle a motorcycle will need routine maintenance, but unlike the bicycle it will also need gas regularly. In the event of a complete disaster gasoline may be hard or impossible to find.
- Car – For speed and carrying capacity a car can be the way to go. Cars can be limited on the type of terrain they can handle depending the car, so if off-roading is required a car may not do the job. Most cars can carry more than one person and their stuff, which allows for a lot more than the previous modes. Like the motorcycle though a car can be loud and heard from distances. Due to its size, it’s not very nimble and you can’t hide it quickly if needed. It also will require gas or diesel depending the make of car. If it’s a diesel I’ve been told it can also run on vegetable oil (SVO) and biodiesel, so you have a few options.
- Truck & SUV – Of the modes of transportation, they will carry the most in size and weight. Depending on the type of truck it may not carry many people though. Most trucks are big and loud making it virtually impossible to do anything in one quietly and without being noticed. They can’t be hidden quickly, but most trucks & SUVs can go over about any terrain. This would allow you to take a road that only a person in another truck, walking, or riding a bicycle could follow.
- Horse – Maybe it’s where I’m from or something, but am I the only one that watches a survival movie and wonders….where all of the horses are at? Like a truck they will go about anywhere. They do require a bit of maintenance, but they feed themselves and when you get water, they can also. Not all can be ridden straight away, but all eventually can be. Next to walking, riding a horse is the oldest form of transportation there is. With saddle bags they can carry a lot of weight, and can also aid in security because they have better hearing and smell than we do. You can quickly move into the some trees to hide, but they are large so it may have to be big trees. They can be noisy, and have a very distinctive sound.
- Wagon – Not really a mode of transportation, but they aid in transport which is why I list them. They allow a person walking to carry more equipment and are small enough to hide quickly if needed. Like walking they make little noise and if they do a little grease will fix that. They require very minimal maintenance, and depending on what you buy can be pretty tough little items. They are also recommended for walkers with small children. While the children can walk some, they will not have the ability to cover the distance an adult would have.
- Boat – In some areas a boat is a viable option as a mode of transportation. There are many types of boats from sail boat, canoe, kayak, or a motor boat. Sail boats are powered by the wind so as long you can keep the sails together you should always be able to move. It can’t be hidden very well if at all depending on size, but they can take little energy to operate. Canoes and kayaks are small and easily hidden in some thickets along a bank, but you are their power and they both have limited weight capacity and are limited on rough water. Power boats is my general term for anything on the water that has to have a motor to run. They have speed and maneuverability and some can be easily hidden along a bank, but they require fuel and regular maintenance.
Depending on the situation at hand, what’s available, and depending on your situation with gear and people you may not have a choice on which mode of transportation you take. If you’re in the middle of urban sprawl, it’s unlikely that you will find a horse. If the roads are full of stalled vehicles a car, truck, or SUV may not be the best option. Maybe you already have your transportation figured out; maybe you are staying put and don’t think you need to think about transportation. As a prepper you should consider all possibilities though.
Stay active, pay attention, and get prepared.