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coffee enthusiast
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Like some on this site, I am a prepper located in an urban environment. My biggest concern is the fact that while I have a "fall back/bug out" location, the hardest part will be getting there. Should a major event or incident occur, and if I am at work, like most, I will inevitably be trapped in the log jam of traffic that will ensue as people scramble home or try to get the hell out of dodge.

While I have a small bug out supply in my truck, I also have supplies ready to go at the hacienda. Depending on the scenario, I think I will likely have no choice but to hunker down at the house till things settle a bit where I can move to my secondary location. This leads me to my question....

Ever noticed how on most major roads and highways, powerlines parallel the road, sometimes for miles? I have a good 4x4 vehicle, and have often pondered detouring in an emergency situation by off roading and driving under powerlines which parallel my route. I figure all I need is a good set of cable cutters for the occasional fenceline or lock. I have thought about mapping routes this way, thereby diverting from major roadways which will be a log jam. In a serious emergency, police will have their hands full, so not too worried there.

My only worry is what if my vehicle gets stuck/has an issue, now I have all my gear in it, and I am trapped in a ****ing field under power lines. Hmm... No plan is perfect. Wondering what some of you think about this idea. Those of us in an urban environment need a plan to get the hell outta here if things get too dicey.

Look forward to hearing your thoughts.
 

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In the current scenario, if you go 4x4ing down power line trails, you're likely trespassing on peoples property. Those right of ways exist for the utility companies use, and do not extend to everyone, so if you are using them, you are likely to make the property owners very unhappy. The ones close to the road typically also overlap highway right of ways, so those may be acceptable, if there is already an established trail, but if not, it goes back to possible trespassing.

And in the event something actually occurs, other people may try off-roading as well, but it's probably better than the highways in an urban setting.
 

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I have taken about 12 different ways home from work, and know side streets and alleys that lead me to other ones as well. If you get the cattle mentality you will not know these. Traveling the power line or off road is an option but if you ever walked by power lines you will notice deep ditches and run-off areas that are treacherous even for the best vehicle so this would be my last resort. for a week take and return on a different route this will give you options.
 

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Super Moderator and Walking Methane Refinery
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Cutting people's fences or locks, might result in them taking you out and using your vehicle as a barricade to prevent someone else from doing the same thing. Just a thought.

The power line roads here travel for countless miles with no fences across them. I see that as a possible path to take if there's no other choice. But I'm sure others will be doing the same thing. Although fewer than will be on the roads, for sure.
 

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coffee enthusiast
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Cutting people's fences or locks, might result in them taking you out and using your vehicle as a barricade to prevent someone else from doing the same thing. Just a thought.

The power line roads here travel for countless miles with no fences across them. I see that as a possible path to take if there's no other choice. But I'm sure others will be doing the same thing. Although fewer than will be on the roads, for sure.
Mike - I appreciate your insight. One of the reasons I suggested this option is that the powerline easements are owned by the power companies, not privately held (in most cases) meaning that there is no "property owner, etc" to contend with.

We are gaming a hypothetical situation in which I have to get the hell out of dodge, so let's not lose focus of the original question. I am not seeking advice regarding the removal of locks, or cutting of fences, etc. I am well aware of the risks.

The question is if you think power line easements are traversable terrain, and worth the risk vs highways, or established roads in a calamity.
 

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Pleasantly demented woman
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I am not seeking advice regarding the removal of locks, or cutting of fences, etc. I am well aware of the risks.

The question is if you think power line easements are traversable terrain, and worth the risk vs highways, or established roads in a calamity.
Getting shot would make it pretty non-traversable.
 

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Follow the advice in the title of your topic and plan accordingly.

Power right-of-ways may be of use, but unless you survey the route well ahead of time you could possibly end up in more trouble than if you jumped into the traffic jam with everyone else.

Some things to consider:

  • Is it a clear route? What if you hit an obstacle that cannot be reasonably overcome, such as a river or even a deep ditch? What about weather? The nice solid path that's a breeze when it's dry may turn into a total no-go after it rains. Do you have a plan to exit the trail and go some other way?
  • Do you have the right equipment on your vehicle? If you think your stock Range Rover will stomp through all challenges like they do in the commercials, wow buddy, you are in for one big mofo surprise! Simply having 4-wheel drive isn't enough. You will at the bare minimum need beefy tires and a winch. If possible also get a suspension, transmission, rear end, and cooling system upgrade.
  • Once you get your vehicle up to standard, you will need to practice driving in off-road conditions. It takes an entirely different skill set than street driving. You do not want your first off-road experience to be when society is collapsing and the zombies are on your tail. Since you can't realistically practice on the path you intend to take when SHTF, you may have to pay a visit to an off-road park or hook up with a club.

Your plan isn't totally undoable, but I think it's probably a lot more difficult than you think.

~Tevin~
 

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Super Moderator and Walking Methane Refinery
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Mike - I appreciate your insight. One of the reasons I suggested this option is that the powerline easements are owned by the power companies, not privately held (in most cases) meaning that there is no "property owner, etc" to contend with.

We are gaming a hypothetical situation in which I have to get the hell out of dodge, so let's not lose focus of the original question. I am not seeking advice regarding the removal of locks, or cutting of fences, etc. I am well aware of the risks.

The question is if you think power line easements are traversable terrain, and worth the risk vs highways, or established roads in a calamity.
It depends on the location. In my area, yes. If you have to cut fences and locks, then possibly not depending on how close to land owners the road is. A lot of times those roads don't pass near anyone's homes.

I understand how the easements work. But I also understand irrate land owners. We've had several here in threads that have mentioned that they won't tolerate people cutting their fences and locks and trespassing across their land on the line roads.
 

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One of the reasons I suggested this option is that the powerline easements are owned by the power companies, not privately held (in most cases) meaning that there is no "property owner, etc" to contend with.
A few things here....

First, easements are not property. Easements are a right granted to the utility company that allows them to be there. The land still belongs to someone and is often used for some other purpose, just like the phone company has the right to bury a drop across the back of your yard but it's still your yard. That is the legal definition of an easement.

Second, even when the power company does own full title to the land, it likewise is theirs. They are indeed a legitimate private "owner", not some nebulous nobody you can guiltlessly trespass on.

I know none of this was the original purpose of your question, but you cannot simply blow it off. On some level you will have to contend with landowners (or non-owners who believe they have a say in whether or not you can be there). To think you will not is more than just leaving a huge hole in your prepping, it's downright foolish.

Good luck!

~Tevin~
 
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