With the seemingly never-ending nuclear threats coming out of North Korea, it’s no wonder that everyone is on edge. In the event of nuclear warfare, unfortunately, no one is safe.
Of course, preparedness is important to many people—so much so that there’s an entire network of “preppers” who often go to extreme lengths to be ready in case of an emergency. If you’re not sure what to do in case war is declared, just ask a prepper named Bruce Beach of Horning’s Mills, Canada, because he has a plan unlike any other.
Bruce has created a bunker so unusual that you need to see it to actually believe it. Some say he’s a “kook,” but Bruce knows that in the event of a nuclear fallout, he’ll have the last laugh…
The news media, although informative, can also be a scary thing to read and listen lately. Throughout history, several countries have threatened the United States with nuclear war (hello, North Korea!), and a man named Bruce Beach just might have the perfect solution should a nuclear war break out.
Bruce lived in Chicago for many years before relocating to a remote area of rural Canada, called Horning’s Mills, in 1970. During the Cold War, he began thinking about nuclear survivalism, and he figured Horning’s Mills was a perfect place to set up shop.
Between the years of 1980 and 1985, Bruce had a total of 42 old school buses shipped to his remote property in Canada. Why exactly was he stockpiling school buses, you might ask? The reason will absolutely blow your mind…
Bruce dropped all 42 of the old buses into a massive underground pit and covered them with concrete for reinforcement. Now, he officially owns and maintains North America’s largest functioning nuclear fallout shelter, which he calls Ark Two.
The entire structure is 10,000 square feet, and it can hold up to 500 people comfortably. There are rooms for various activities and daily errands, and as Bruce puts it, the bunker is “virtually impenetrable to anything short of a direct nuclear strike.”
Most people who live near Bruce think maintaining the entire shelter is a big waste of time. However, Bruce knows that in the event of a nuclear attack, he has the provisions and the shelter to stay alive.
Ark Two exists 14 feet under the ground, and Bruce purchased the old school buses for $300 each. It might seem expensive, but Bruce believes it’s worth it. For the last 35 years, he’s worked hard every day making sure the entire bunker is equipped and ready in the event of an emergency.
Che Bodhi, an event organizer for the Ontario Prepper Survival Network (OPSN), had this to say about Bruce’s massive underground structure: “When you go inside the bunker for the first time, it is a different planet, it’s like you’re on Mars. When you hear about this concept of 42 school buses underground, to fathom it is nothing compared to going in and actually seeing it…It’s crazy in there.”
The bunker features all the comforts of home. It includes two industrial kitchens, a living room, classrooms for children, and washrooms with running water. You really couldn’t ask for anything else…
The property also offers full plumbing, including a private well to ensure clean drinking water; diesel generators with three months of fuel; and an electronic radio communication station so information can be transmitted throughout Canada and the United States.
Ark Two is also fully equipped with gender-segregated bunks and cubicle-like storage spaces for people to keep their personal belongings. Bruce was sure to leave no stone unturned when it came to preparing his bunker system.
The biggest problem Bruce faces has been both political and bureaucratic. All branches of local government have been unenthusiastic about the shelter. Bruce built the bunker without proper permits, and he claims the local government has taken him to court over 30 times.
The fire department in the nearby town of Shelburne has been a particularly harsh opponent to Bruce. Over the years, the department sealed the bunker twice due to safety concerns. During a 2015 Annual Preppers’ Meet, when a group of Canadian survivalists gathered on Bruce’s property, firefighters threatened to seal off the bunker a third time. Luckily, it never happened.
The general public views the project as the work of an eccentric old man who’s paranoid about the end of the world. Bruce, however, could care less. He sees it as his duty to his fellow man to provide shelter during a worldwide emergency.
Bruce does say that while he stands strong in his belief that he’s doing right by his fellow man, the stress of maintaining the shelter has taken a personal toll on him and his family. In recent months, the complex has suffered fires, rats, vandalism, and floods.
Bruce’s adult children are also tired of constantly listening to the “doom and gloom” attitude their father always has about the future of the planet. Bruce’s 90-year-old wife, Jean, however, still sticks by his side through all of it.
The Ark Two community website reads: “The Ark Two SAFE (Safe America For Everyone) Community is the largest pluralistic survival community in North America without any political, religious, or cultural bias. Its purpose is to ameliorate the catastrophe of a nuclear war or other world-wide cataclysmic catastrophe and to help restore civilization.”
Some might think he’s crazy, and others might think he’s doing humankind a favor, but either way, Ark Two stands as a fortress in the rural town of Horning’s Mills, Canada. Hopefully, the world never sees a nuclear war—but if it does, Bruce might just be the man to contact.
Bruce truly built a unique shelter, and it’s so cool that he welcomes anyone who wants to help him maintain it!
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