8 Ideal U.S. Locations to Consider During a Societal Collapse

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The phrase ‘societal collapse’ can sound pretty alarming, and it’s not an impossible scenario. Keep reading to understand what it means, what causes it, and if you ever find yourself in a tough situation, unsure of where to escape to in the United States during dark times, there are 8 solid picks that’ll most likely keep you safe. 

What does societal collapse mean?

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A societal collapse is the concept that a human civilization and its cultural identity could regress to a primitive state or vanish entirely. While it’s uncertain if Western society will face collapse, there are startling indicators prompting this debate.

Arnold Toynbee, a historian, once said, “Great civilizations are not murdered, they take their own lives.” Essentially, civilizations often play a role in their own decline, though it’s rarely a solo act. 

Why might a society collapse?

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The reasons behind a societal collapse are many and complex. They can range from environmental stresses like climate change and natural disasters to economic inequality, poor leadership, corruption, war, and even natural events beyond human control like a massive meteor strike.

The impact of such a collapse is deep, widespread, and often long-lasting. While some societies bounce back, others vanish, much like the great empires of the past.

8 Places to consider in the US for such scenarios:

A societal collapse isn’t the end of the world. These eight spots in the US could turn things around, or at the very least, make a crisis more manageable.

The Rocky Mountains


Stretching from Canada to New Mexico, the Rocky Mountains offer rugged landscapes, diverse climates, and a wealth of natural resources. This region’s isolation and difficult terrain provide natural defenses against widespread unrest. 

Its varied climate zones allow for different types of agriculture, hunting, and fishing. Access to freshwater is plentiful, and the vast forests provide timber and other resources essential for long-term sustainability.



Hawaii’s tropical paradise offers a year-round warm climate and abundant natural resources, making it an attractive option for self-sufficiency. Freshwater sources, fertile land for farming, and the ocean’s bounty support a sustainable lifestyle. 

However, living in Hawaii comes with challenges, including the risk of natural disasters like hurricanes and tsunamis. Despite these risks, Hawaii’s communities have a history of resilience and adaptation to their environment.



Alaska is a frontier of untamed wilderness, sprawling over a vast area that’s largely uninhabited and untouched. Its isolation from the continental U.S. offers a unique advantage during societal collapses, providing a buffer against mass migrations and chaos. 

The state is abundant in natural resources, including fresh water, fish, game, and timber, making self-sufficiency more attainable. However, its harsh climate and rugged terrain require adequate preparation and survival skills.

The Appalachian Region


Stretching from southern New York to northern Mississippi, the Appalachian Mountains offer a rugged and resource-rich landscape. This area is known for its tight-knit communities, self-reliant lifestyle, and abundant natural resources. 

It provides not just a scenic retreat but also practical solutions for sustainable living, such as access to water, fertile land for agriculture, and vast forests for shelter and fuel. The region’s isolation and challenging terrain can also serve as a natural barrier, offering protection and a sense of security in uncertain times.

The Great Basin


The Great Basin, covering much of Nevada and parts of Utah, Oregon, and Idaho, is characterized by its arid desert landscape interspersed with mountain ranges. This region has fostered self-sufficient communities adept at living in harsh conditions. 

Water scarcity is a significant challenge, but innovative water conservation methods and the utilization of underground aquifers can make sustainable living possible. The area’s isolation and challenging living conditions offer a deterrent to those less prepared for a self-sufficient lifestyle.

The Ozarks


The Ozarks, also known as the Ozark Mountains, offer a mix of rugged mountains and serene valleys. This region is known for its abundant freshwater sources, including rivers, lakes, and springs, making it ideal for agriculture and living off the land. 

The Ozarks’ caves provide natural shelters and storage options. Its remote locations are less likely to be affected by mass migrations, offering a peaceful retreat with a strong sense of community among the locals.

The Pacific Northwest


The Pacific Northwest, encompassing states like Washington and Oregon, is renowned for its lush forests, fertile valleys, and abundant rainfall. This region offers a mild climate that’s conducive to year-round agriculture, allowing for a stable food supply.

 Its vast natural resources, including forests and rivers, support a self-sufficient lifestyle. The area’s diverse ecosystems also provide a range of habitats that can be advantageous for those seeking isolation or community living.

Puerto Rico


Puerto Rico, an island territory of the United States in the Caribbean Sea, boasts a tropical climate, fertile land, and access to fresh water, making it conducive to agriculture and self-sustained living. 

The island’s history of weathering hurricanes and natural disasters has fostered a resilient and resourceful community. Puerto Rico’s reliance on local resources and its strong community bonds provide a solid foundation for survival in challenging times.

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Kate Smith, a self-proclaimed word nerd who relishes the power of language to inform, entertain, and inspire. Kate's passion for sharing knowledge and sparking meaningful conversations fuels her every word.