Whether by disease-carrying mutant zombies or global nuclear disaster, in the event of an apocalypse,
Idaho can handle itself. We’re not afraid of gorillas, bears, heights, or much of anything around here. But these 11 Idaho towns are all especially prepared and uniquely situated to survive and navigate the trials of any cataclysmic disaster of species-wiping proportions. They’ll also do so while presumably finding a strange sense of satisfaction from the lessened population and the opportunity to zombie hunt without a permit.
Of course, I’m no dystopic expert, so don’t pack up your livelihood and move quite yet — these geographic suggestions are all infotainment, as it were.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life. While we continue to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, please take proper precautions or add them to your bucket list to see at a later date. If you know of a local business that could use some extra support during these times, please nominate them here:
Meridian may look on the surface to be a charming, upscale metro community, but it has a secret side of epic doomsday preparedness proportions...
Meridian is the homebase of the renowned Zombie Acres attraction range. Assault trucks and shooting areas are just about as awesome as it gets, so in between hoarding Twinkies and ammo like the rest of Idaho, you can be sure that most of the population has had some practice taking on a zombie horde of some proportion. If doomsday by some other means, only time will tell the outcome.
2. Coeur d'Alene
Coeur d'Alene's main advantage is its proximity to Lake Coeur d'Alene, a huge central body of water that would make an ideal getaway in the event of encroaching undead. Here, you can wait out the disaster in relative comfort knowing that zombies can't swim.
Coeur d'Alene's other advantage is its tree-filled landscape. Here, hidden amongst the nooks and crannies of Northern Idaho are an abundance of cavernous homesteads hand-built by Idaho citizens wanting the utmost in remote living, any of which would make perfect single-family fallout shelters. While this area
is Idaho bear country, in the event of the disaster being an imminent zombie threat, the living still hold a speed advantage over zombified corpses so no doubt your pursuers will be mauled before you are. It's a win-win for you and the bears, really.
When all else fails, escape to Canada, since odds are a disaster trajectory won't be coming from a Northerly direction. Not a bad plan, eh?
As the home of the Crystal Gold Mine, Kellogg's underground caverns would make for convenient shelter no matter the doomsday disaster. Since the mine has been open for tours for decades, all of the necessary equipment is there to make underground life habitable. Hats, lights, cheesy tourist keychains (clearly a necessity) ... Despite the persistent claustrophobia, you can bet holing up in a mine meant to withstand picks and dynamite is a safe bet.
If underground living isn't your style, but escaping a disaster scenario requires a literal escape, ingenious Kellogg residents can always take to the skies on one of the town's infamous ski gondolas. The metal slack poles are fairly safe from zombie climbing capabilities, and your gondola car's mobilized trajectory can easily move you away from pending danger, as well as give you an unrivaled vantage point.
Lewiston has a number of things going for it in the event of a major disaster. The Lewiston-Clarkston bridge, which spans the zombie-repelling Snake River, would be an optimal high-point to spot oncoming threats of every kind.
Nez Perce County also has the 3rd highest rate of gun ownership in the entire nation. Perched on the bridge and loaded with a self-built armory, few catastrophic threats would stand a chance.
Just don't forget to DOUBLE TAP.
Lewiston's Potlatch Paper Mill -- which is well known across the valley for its odd, mildewy odor -- is also surefire protection if nothing else is. It might just frighten away doomsday threats all on its own, or at least mask your human scent and send those pesky adversaries with a hankering for brains stumbling off in another direction. In the event of another fallout scenario of less physical proportions, Potlatch's sheer size could make a visible and well-fortified bomb shelter or safe zone.
5. Mountain Home
When it comes to life or death catastrophes, sometimes a little extra fire power is needed. Fortunately for local residents, the Mountain Home Air Force Base sprawls across the lower Idaho desert landscape and houses the 366th Fighter Wing. With fighters already frequently doing flyovers across the valley, you can bet that in the event of a disaster every aircraft of every size will be loaded and ready to wreak havoc if needed. The main compound can also act as a temporary fallout in any number of catastrophic circumstances, but odds are, no zombies will make it through the desert alive enough to take anyone on face-to-face.
In the 1970s, when the FHWA threatened to build an interstate through downtown Wallace, citizens took action and listed every building on the national historic register, forcing the association to build the freeway as an elevated viaduct. While this one would take some ingenuity, there's no doubt that a long a stretch of roadway, blockaded and protected from the elements, would make an excellent shelter for an otherwise displaced town.
But when all else fails, go underground. The Sierra Silver Mine in Wallace was discovered around 1900, but has been idle for decades. When a more thorough exploration was launched in an attempt to improve silver ore extracts, multiple incline shafts and passageways were bored into the earth, creating a catacomb maze that could shelter hundreds if needed from outside plague/natural disaster/zombie forces.
Of course when disaster strikes, getting out of the city is another no-brainer, if apocalyptic movie scenarios are any indication. Often called "the end of the line," Dixie is miles...and miles...and miles from its closest neighbor.
This unincorporated town also has an unquantifiable population; meaning, too small and varied to permanently record. This is a true safe zone from all things apocalyptic.
If true isolation is necessary, however, putting as many barriers between you and the rest of the population is a smart move as well. Fortunately, Stanley offers the perfect getaway as arguably Idaho's most isolated area due to wilderness. With a humble population of less than 100 residents, Stanley makes the list first and foremost due to its small size. When your closest neighbor is hundreds of acres away, it tends to alleviate any fear of spreading disease.
But most importantly, Stanley also makes the list for its geography. Nestled between the Sawtooths and the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness Area, town access is minimal and challenging for the walking undead, and the area's multiple water bodies are an excellent retreat in a pinch.
After that spiel on getting "outta dodge" in the event of a doomsday disaster, it may seem counter-intuitive to list Idaho's capital city as a safe haven. But take one look at the 22.5-mile Boise River Greenbelt, catch up on the latest marathon news, and pay a visit to one of the local recreation areas, it all becomes clear that Boise is a health-friendly community. So much so in fact that Boise has been listed on multiple national lists for its active lifestyle, including
Men's Health. While its large population might be a deterrent depending on the situation, keep in mind that CARDIO is the first rule of zombie survival, so most of Boise's residents already have a head start.
Cardio is great, but when a large-scale nuclear or plague disaster can't be outsprinted, a blast-proof shelter could be necessary. Originally called the "Highlands Community Fallout Shelter," Boise's own bomb bunker was the first prototype community fallout shelter in the United States designed to house multiple families for an extended period of time. This two-story, 14,000 square foot, steel reinforced concrete hideout had a controversial history when it was built in 1961 due to its catering towards Boise's more affluent residents... but that's another story for another time. While originally built during the Cold War and Russian occupation threats, today, the shelter exists as a set of music studios; however, a doomsday event would make this shelter ideally suited to its original purpose.
Home of the tallest mountain peak in Idaho, a strenuous climb is all it would take to see every threat coming your way for miles around, allowing hours to make preparations. Surely the crisp mountain air would provide plague protection as well.
For many, an apocalypse signals the "ultimate judgment day." But with nearly 20 different churches of varying denominations, many of which are centered on the town's "Church Row," Weiser is no doubt safer for its faith-centered, close-knit community atmosphere and small population. Weiser also has quite the gun-toting reputation, so residents here should feel relatively safe no matter the circumstances.
But the town LEAST likely to survive doomsday? Arco, Idaho.
In the event of a large-scale disaster, completely open desert landscape doesn't provide much in the way of hiding spots or fortified shelter options, which is Arco's first strike.
But really, Arco's biggest threat to its safety is in its own backyard. No matter the apocalyptic source or trajectory, living side by side with a nuclear testing lab while also sitting on top of buried and unstable nuclear waste dating back to the 50's is a disaster waiting to happen.
What do you think? Are there any disaster-proof cities that I missed? For more legitimate info, and to take your preparations to the next level (regardless of city), check out this super scientific