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aka Mental Avenger
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
In a conversation with fellow survivalists about living in the foothills or mountains on Federal Land after TSHTF, I suggested using a cave. Of course there are few available caves, and even fewer that are habitable. Since many are created by water, they are often very damp, even wet. Also, if you were going to prepare a cave ahead of time, you probably could not get a permit from the government.

What if you got a permit to start a small scale mine? You could dig out plenty of room for a nice habitat, then stop, or proceed slowly. You would have the legal right to be there as long as you kept renewing the permit. A few points to consider:
The cost of a permit is $100
You must include a wildlife survey
A Reclamation Bond must be posted, not to exceed $2500
The yearly renewal fee is $50 which is paid along with your annual report.
It would be reasonable to block off the entrance with iron gates or doors.
It would be reasonable to set up living quarters to live in while you mine.

Bottom line, for a relatively modest fee and a little labor, you could create and maintain a legal, viable, secure BOL.

Comments?
 

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Awesome
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just dig a hole in the ground and build a bugout shelter and bury it, itd work, but i know someone who bought land with the side of a mountain on it and dug out a habitat in the rock.. i think they used high pressure water to carve it
 

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aka Mental Avenger
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Discussion Starter #7
Your idea of 'a little labor' and 'modest fee' is interesting.
The fees are not very much, a lot less than building a cabin.
Digging in most areas is not difficult. In some areas, with a rock layer overlaying a soft sediment layer, it would be rather easy. When we were young we dug out all sorts of holes for huts.
 

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I guess its all relative. $2500 would be a nice cabin for me...

And digging a cave I could live in here would cost tens of thousands of dollars and months of labor. It took me a months to dig a 6x6 covered sandbag walled bunker five feet just five feet deep here.

But everything is regional. We don't have natural caves or underground mines anywhere nearby, probably because the geology here doesn't support it without massive expensive and engineering.
 

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aka Mental Avenger
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Discussion Starter #9
If you strike gold, or silver, or gem stones, you could even possibly make a profit. If you hit coal, you won't have to worry about heating in the winter.
 

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aka Mental Avenger
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Discussion Starter #10
I guess its all relative. $2500 would be a nice cabin for me...

And digging a cave I could live in here would cost tens of thousands of dollars and months of labor. It took me a months to dig a 6x6 covered sandbag walled bunker five feet just five feet deep here.

But everything is regional. We don't have natural caves or underground mines anywhere nearby, probably because the geology here doesn't support it without massive expensive and engineering.
Tens of thousands of dollars??? I was referring to a mountain cabin size cave, not a 15 room mansion. A month to dig 5 x 5?? You might want to trade in your teaspoon for a shovel.
 

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Only politics *****.
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I'm sure you have the knowledge of engineering to be able to safely construct a mine (even a small scale one), and a room inside big enough to live in, which has enough airflow and no water issues? And to actually construct this in the middle of nowhere? Aslong as you don't think you just have to dig a hole into the side of a mountain and leave it at that. Many who seem to think about mines or using shipping containers or similar options really forget about the supports and construction needed and logistics of getting such a thing into place.
 

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Tens of thousands of dollars??? I was referring to a mountain cabin size cave, not a 15 room mansion. A month to dig 5 x 5?? You might want to trade in your teaspoon for a shovel.
I wish it was only one month, more like three.

And a shovel? I wish you could dig here with a shovel. A shovel is what you use to remove the dirt after you've broken it up into chips with a pickaxe and pry bar.

Water proofing, retaining walls, roof support, floor, ventilation, lighting, heavy machinery rental to actually do the digging....you could easily blow $10k on a 12x12 underground room here.

But hey, you can really do what you think you can for cheap then go for it. Just saying, not an option everywhere.
 

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reluctant sinner
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I think you would be far better off to build an earth/sand bag stucco or a tire shelter above ground and then cover it with earth. Sand bags are cheap, relatively easy to handle, tires are free.

Almost every cave and mine I have been in is damp, and other critters have lived there.
Hantaviruses isn't a joke.

Just so you know that if that mine claim is polluted/contaminated even tho you didn't do it you could be held accountable to pay to clean the place up unless you have an exemption.

Hard to find any pay dirt that isn't already claimed or in an area that mining is forbidden.
 

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Swirl Herder
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The fees are not very much, a lot less than building a cabin.
Digging in most areas is not difficult. In some areas, with a rock layer overlaying a soft sediment layer, it would be rather easy. When we were young we dug out all sorts of holes for huts.
The easier it is to dig, the more likely it is to collapse - particularly if you intend to excavate rooms rather than narrow tunnels (the bigger the roof span, the bigger the slabs that may fall).
 

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aka Mental Avenger
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Discussion Starter #15
I'm sure you have the knowledge of engineering to be able to safely construct a mine (even a small scale one), and a room inside big enough to live in, which has enough airflow and no water issues? And to actually construct this in the middle of nowhere? Aslong as you don't think you just have to dig a hole into the side of a mountain and leave it at that. Many who seem to think about mines or using shipping containers or similar options really forget about the supports and construction needed and logistics of getting such a thing into place.
This is mining country. My grandfather owned a coal mine (which I have been in) and my father worked in it. I am a spelunker and have been deep into some caves. When we were young, we dug out hole in river banks to make hideouts. I understand the engineering and the work required.
 

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aka Mental Avenger
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Discussion Starter #16
I think you would be far better off to build an earth/sand bag stucco or a tire shelter above ground and then cover it with earth. Sand bags are cheap, relatively easy to handle, tires are free.
There is no way to get a permit for that.
 

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King of Canada
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I got a huge mine up here to BO to if possible, though I doubt it will ever be necessary where I am. I have maps of it too.

Chances are, I'll be at work when it/if that sort of thing happens; so I'll have to get home and grab the family first
 

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aka Mental Avenger
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Discussion Starter #18
The easier it is to dig, the more likely it is to collapse - particularly if you intend to excavate rooms rather than narrow tunnels (the bigger the roof span, the bigger the slabs that may fall).
Of course. That is why it is helpful to find a layer of soft earth overlayed by solid rock. However, supports and trusses are not rocket science. A bugout cave does not need to be very large, and as you say, long and narrow is stronger.
 

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reluctant sinner
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I'm not up on the current mining laws and environmental regulations as I quit the gubernment in 1993 out of disgust. My buddy has a mine claim 160 or 320 acres I'm not sure anymore. I only went there once. He got it from gramps. G ran a mercury table after crushing the ore. You can bet that there is pollution there. I have seen dry creek bottoms over in the Owyhee mountains that have free mercury in puddles on the bedrock.

As near as I know you can build a mine office anyway you want. You can cut so many green trees to use for shoring timbers. In the old law you could even shoot game for camp meat. G shot hundreds of deer and elk with a single shot 22 Mag. Red was big man perhaps 6'8 pushing 300 of muscle - most people didn't try to tell him what to do. Then there was the time his daughter (my buddy's mom) shot out every street light in Idaho City with 300 Savage 99. Interesting family.

I spent a summer in the Frank Church Wilderness Area at a working mine. I was on the resurvey crew for the claims at Custer Id and those on the Yankee fork of the Salmon river and the N fork of the Yankee Also did some claims up on the Lochsa and Selway plus the Payette. Most all the pipe and bearing trees in those area were marked by me.
 

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There is no way to get a permit for that.
In that case, first find a BOL that is in a place without permits. If is a place with permits its already has a lot of problems. I'd rather shelter in a tent in a place without permits than have a bunker somewhere with them. Permits mean, government, and high population, avoid those first and that solves most of the problems you would even want a bunker for in the first place.
 
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