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Prepping For SHTF

Stockpiling Ammo at the Bug Out Location

This past weekend I decided it was time to organize the ammunition at the Bug Out Location. We had ammo stored in 3,,, 4 different locations, which made taking inventory a pain in the rear end.

My wife cleared off a wire shelf so I could bring it to the camp and organize the ammo stockpile. The idea was to get all of the ammo together, see what we have and go from there.

Stockpiling ammunition for SHTF

Ammunition at the Bug Out Location is your “oh crap, the S has seriously HTF.” If you have to rely on the ammunition stockpile that you BOL, something really bad has happened – you and your family have had to leave your home, friends and family are probably knocking on your door asking for help,,, things have gone from bad to worse.

Because I look at BOL ammo as a last resort, I only stockpile what I normally shoot in my rifles. This is ammunition that has been tried, tested and proven to work in my rifle and on the game animals in my area. Why use a certain type of ammunition during hunting season, and stockpile a different type of ammo at the Bug Out Location? While this applies to hunting ammo, I look at defensive ammo in a different light.

As for defensive ammo, I stockpile one type, and its something that preforms well in my rifles. The goal of defensive ammo is to poke holes in the target.


Top shelf – On the top shelf, all the way to the right is a wire rack containing a row of 7.62×39 and 223. The idea is to have some 7.62×39 and 223 where people can grab and go.

SHTF, you and your family decide to head to your remote camp. When you get there, instead of having to look for 223 or 7.62×39, its on the top shelf so people can grab, load, and go to their security positions.

Second shelf from top – This is where the primary hunting ammunition is stored. Starting on the left hand side, largest to smallest caliber.

30-06, 30-30, 280/7mm express, 270 last but not least is 308. the 308 is directly under the 7.62×39 and 223. This is so we can hand it to people with semi-auto rifles that can be used for either hunting or for defense.

Third shelf from top – Shotgun and 22 long rifle.

As with the rifle ammo on the shelf directly above the shotgun ammo, largest on the left, smallest to the right.

12 gauge 00 buckshot to the far left.

Squirrel, rabbit and bird in the middle, and22 long rifle to the far right.

For the 22 long rifle we are stockpiling various brand names.  Not all types of 22 long rifle works well in all rifles.  the goal is to stock a variety of brands so we can find which brands we should pair up with which rifles.

Federal makes a brick of “Champion” 22 long rifle.  Unlike other bricks of 22 long rifle, the Champion brick is made up of small boxes containing 50 rounds each.  This way you can hand out a box of 50 rounds to the hunting parties and send them on their way.

Bottom shelf – This is where your heavy ammo boxes should be stored.  The heavy items need to be stored on bottom to help prevent the shelves from tipping over.

Safety and Security

Keep all ammunition and firearms out of the reach of children.

Secure the shelves to the wall with screws so the unit can not tip over.  A few years ago I worked for a guy whos gun safe tipped over and landed on his daughter.  The safe was not secured to wall.  When the daughter pulled on the handle, the safe fell forward, landed on top of and almost kill her.

Long term storage

The key to long term storage is to keep your ammo in a cool dry place.  But when you are storing your ammo in a remote camp, how do you keep it cool and dry?

Like a lot of people, you might have an ice chest laying around that is not being used.  Take the ice chest, put the ammo cans in it, and put it on the bottom shelf.  The insulation of the ice chest, and the dead air space will help stabilize the temps inside the ammo can.

Insulation of ice chest

Dead air space between ice chest and ammo can

Metal or plastic of ammo can

Dead air inside ammo can

This configuration helps keep the temperature inside the ammo can stable.

Instead of changes in the ambient air being transferred through the ammo can and to the shells, the ice chest adds an extra 2 layers to the equation – insulation and ambient air.


So far we have talked about the calibers that people in your immediate group might use.  As survivalist we need to plan ahead and communicate with our friends and family.

A buddy of mine shoots a 300 Winchester magnum.  Since he reads this blog, hopefully he will see this post and send me a couple boxes of 300 Win. Mag. to store for him.

My uncle has 2 rifles chambered in 270.  Since we are already stockpiling 270, this should not be an issue.

My brother shoots a 30-06, 30-30, and my nephew shoots a a 308.  Since we are already stockpiling 30-06, 30-30 and 308, this should not be an issue.

When stockpiling ammunition, one of the main kinks thrown into the chair comes from people buying odd-ball calibers.  Could you imagine what would happen if everyone in the group shot a different caliber?  Its one thing to buy a box of ammo and say 2 or 3 people can use that box, its another thing to buy a box of ammo and say only one person can use it.

But anyway, good luck to you and your preps, and GOD bless.



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