I have written a couple of other posts about Bug Out Bags and one dealt specifically on the subject of the contents of your bug out bag or BOB.
I won’t get into weight or the absolute foolishness (in my opinion) of packing anything remotely that heavy in this post.
Items like water and food usually weigh the most unless you have some really heavy gear in your bug out bag.
Using the guidelines above, I pack the items I am going to need to get to least,  at the bottom of the pack.
Once I have my sleeping bag and tent in the bug out bag, I pack most of my spare clothes, then food and cooking gear. I also carry a JetBoil that takes up about as much room as my food and I have my fuel in that same container.
The top of your bug out bag or the pockets on the outside depending on what you are using should have the gear or equipment you are going to need the most. The sides usually hold the water filter, maybe some additional items depending on what I am carrying like spare water bladders.
Excellent article sir and looking forward to the article you have lined up as well regarding packing 50 to 70 pounds worth of gear in a BOB.
When I started building my bob, I spent nearly an hour at REI looking at hydration options.
The one I have has a quick disconnect at the bottom of the reservoir, allowing removal without un-routing the hose from the pack.
For someone new to being a Survivalist building your first Bug Out Bag can seem like a big task. A Bug Out Bag, (also called a BOB, Get Out of Dodge Bag, GOOD, or 72 Hour Bag) is usually designed to get you out of an emergency situation and allow you to survive self-contained for up to 3 days.
To expand your capability or survive longer than a couple of days you will need a water purification system. Obviously you will need a longer term food solution in any type of wide area catastrophe, but for your basic Bug Out Bag backpack meals are a good set up.
Your Bug Out Bag clothes should be similar to what you would pack for a weekend backpacking trip.
This list could go on for a while and many people would never dream of leaving their Bug Out Bag without twice that much, but in a pinch that set up could get you by for 3 days. If you are going to survive for 3 days you are going to need protection from the elements and a warm dry place to sleep. Trying to cover everything you need in your Bug Out Bag First Aid Kit is another article entirely to itself, probably several more. What I will do is recommend that you build your own First Aid Kit instead of buying one of those prepackaged first aid kits that claim to have 1001 things to get you through any emergency. Plus, building your own first aid kit gives you an intimate knowledge of what it contains and how to use it.
Basic Gear sounds repetitive (what have I been talking about?) but it is my category for the things you absolutely cannot live without but don’t really fit well into another category. Survival Knife – The most used and most versatile tool in your Bug Out Bag is your survival knife.
The fact of the matter is you are might be dealing with a “Without Rule of Law” situation, or close to it, and people are likely to do crazy things. Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.
Oh yeah, check out the Prize Giveaway & Scavenger Hunt Laura put together for you guys.  It will post 12pm EST, get some! A wool beanie is a must have for any operation (Desert or the Mountains of Afghanistan) in my opinion.  A wool beanie has saved my a** on more than one mountain top far from home. Ok, you guys asked about optics, so here you have it.  Need a good piece of glass for your semi-auto or bolt action rifle?  The best bang for your buck is surely the NightForce series. We recently posted about the Princeton Tec Charge, a great piece of Kit developed in partnership with some tier one units.  The only feedback we have on the Charge is , smoothe the edges and recess the light and maybe add a draw string to convert it into a headlamp. Like a good headlamp, another must have is a tactical light that can literally light up the room and blind adversaries.  SureFire has be doing this for a long time. This year I had the opportunity to get my hands on a number of new products and reflect on some of the better ones that I’ve used in the past. My buddies back in SOCOM are pleasantly surprised that SOF units are getting back to their roots as light, highly mobile, and maneuverable strike teams and unconventional warfare units.
Even though I had some criticisms with the cut of the pants, I would still pack my PenCott Badlands uniform into a duffle bag when heading overseas. 30 years from now the public is going to find out about some hair raising operations that our troops conducted deep in enemy territory when the FOIA requests start getting approved. On those aforementioned deep reconnaissance patrols, you are also going to need a serious ruck.
Last but not least, I want to follow up on David’s suggestion about oral rehydration tablets. Sixth and lastly, if I thought I was going to be able to mooch about looking cool and staring wistfully off into the desert sunset in front of even reasonably attractive NGO females, I would wear my Yates Cobra CQB Belt, because it looks as good as it performs. Merry Christmas, especially to Chad, Raymond, Chap and my other friends who’ll still be there this Christmas.
I think someone posted here earlier that handguns and caliber are like whatever you have in the hooch to open the beer with: whatever works.


I’ve had a Suunto Observer for 5 years now and still love it but the original bands wear out quickly. I’ve been sporting the Suunto Core for a few months now and its pretty good for us guys with smaller pockets.
I think the idea of a combat tomahawk is a little outlandish but when you are talking about any kind of edged weapon it will be a weapon of last resort on today’s battlefield.
What was that line in “300” when those non-Spartan Greeks ambushed the Immortals? Guys, if you like the Swarovski 8 x 42, you should check out the new 10 x 50 or 12 x 50 Swarovision binoculars. Are you sure you’d be able to get a decent swing in when you’re inside a cockpit?
For the uninitiated, the Bug Out Bag’s purpose is to give you everything you should need to live for 72 hours if you are forced to evacuate your location suddenly.
My contention is that there are too many people that are throwing everything but the kitchen sink in their packs and I feel that there is something of an insane rush to get everything humanly possible into your BOB without much thought as to the why or the weight.
It is not a Bug Out Suitcase even though I swear some people pack more into a Bug Out Bag than they do for a week down in Cancun.
I will talk about intelligently packing what you do have because regardless of whether you have an ultra-light pack or some behemoth weighing as much as a 4th grade boy, you need to pack this in a way that will make it as comfortable as possible to carry. I would argue that you could just as easily bug out with a back pack as you could with any military looking pack from Blackhawk, maybe even easier.
To be successful, you want to pack the right gear, but you need to pack it the right way too and that means keeping your center of gravity as close to you as possible. A lot of people have moved to carrying water bladders like a Camelbak and most new packs have a place right inside the back next to your spine for carrying this. I still prefer the tent and it is one of the last items I need so It goes in the bottom of the bag.
I say most of my clothes because depending on the weather I will carry a fleece or windbreaker too and I want this where I can get to it easily. My jetboil can boil water for drinking, cook food or quickly heat my water for coffee in the mornings. My pack has a compartment that is waterproof and that is where the lighters and fire kit go along with my headlamp and snacks. I carry two spares so that when I get to camp I can pump plenty of water for washing up, cooking and even breakfast in the morning. Nalgene bottles, stainless bottles, Camelbak systems, Platypus systems, and eventually Osprey systems. I take the ambush with me on day hikes or when I am sitting in the deer stand and the water capacity is tremendous.
The ideas expressed on this site are solely the opinions of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the opinions of anyone else. Everybody you read about has been tweaking theirs for months or even years and has a pile of gear built up. A lot of people plan their Bug Out Bag to sustain them for much longer than that, but there is always a limit to what you can carry on your back and a 3 day target is a good place to start.
While some are ok, in my experience these types of kits are usually filled with a lot of stuff you are unlikely to need and not enough of the things you will probably need a lot of.
How many people buy one of those pre-made set ups and just assume they are prepared because there’s so much crap in it there must be what I need?
Many survivalists will not like this list because it is not exhaustive by any means, but again I will say: It will be enough to get you by for a couple of days.
Also something as simple as a big walking stick or club can be a strong deterrent for bad guys.
This  is a bag from London Bridge Trading Company (Made in the USA) that answers the mail for sure.  We did a post on this recently and you can Click Here to check it out.
With built in GPS, Barometer, Compass, and everything else, you can leave the Luminox where it belongs, in the purse. Overall, I’ve been very satisfied how military equipment continues to evolve, although I am still very disappointed at the lack of creativity shown by many weapons manufacturers and how slowly the firearms industry accepts new innovations. When going tactical ultra-light, I still say that you can’t go wrong with the Mayflower UW rig. There are more than enough redeemable features to warrant taking the pants down to the sew shop and having them altered yourself to meet your specification. I’ll do a direct comparison to two other helmet mounted lights in the future, but suffice to say that the Princton Tec light resolved a couple of different problems found in similar products. If I was heading out into austere conditions, behind enemy lines, and in a small team or even as a singleton operator, I would want one knife above all the others that I’ve used. There are several that I find acceptable for a long gun, but I want my very own Streamlight M3 for my pistol.
One plain looking DDR Gunhammer in a TIE scabbard on my (rigger) belt, one Medford fixed blade and a very banged-up old Benchmade Triage (in orange, so I can find the damn thing if I drop it) hooked inside my pocket. In the interest of looking tacticool and impressing women who probably wouldn’t even speak my language (or have all their teeth), I would also probably wear my Polarized Shears. A 1965 USD had 7,02 times the buying power as 2011 USD has so in today dollar value the price would be would be $ 1.400. Any available vital shot is good for me beggers can’t be choosy, so long as it Deanimates the attacker.


A bug out bag should be pre-packed with all of your supplies so that you can grab it, throw it on your back and walk or run out your car, or head for the hills. I have another post lined up to rehash this concept under a different theme, but I have heard others talk about packing 50 to 70 pounds in their Bug Out Bag and they plan to walk for hundreds of miles if necessary. We are going to talk about how to pack your bug out bag to take the most advantages of weight distribution and tried and true backpacking tips as possible. The last thing you need is a big pack that keeps you off balance and puts unneeded stress on your back.
Keep the heavy stuff as close to you as possible and low as opposed to above your shoulders.
Additionally, having your sleeping bag on the bottom gives you a nice soft cushion when you set your pack down. This way if I get hungry, I don’t have to dig in my bug out bag, just unzip the top compartment. It will really come down to reducing weight and emphasizing on what is necessary and what is a nice to have.
The author may or may not have a financial interest in any company or advertiser referenced. It’s hard to know where to start, but if you cover all of the basics in a survival situation you will still be much better off that 99% of the people.
That said, the best seller on Black Friday this year was gun sales on the civilian side, so I suppose we can be grateful for that!
I know troops are using it overseas at this very moment and they have very good things to say about this piece of kit. Badlands is an amazing pattern that seems to change as you move from one background to the next, or as you step from the shadows into the sunlight.
I especially like the various mounting options, as it can be mounted on your kit or helmet and can also be used as a gun light on your carbine. The Molle ruck sack came with a instructional video tape on how to use it… Do I need to say more?
Go to the PX and buy yourself some of those Airborne tablets that are supposed to square you away when you’ve got a cold. I know there are others you might think are better, but I’ve had mine for about a decade and it has never failed me. Kinda fun to watch the mail dudes at police & fire HQ wonder if it was something ah bad (???). Backpackers have been bugging out for a long time and it pays to take a lesson or two from people who have more experience than the average Doomsday Prepper fan when it comes to packing everything they need for 72 hours on their back and living to talk about it. I have my sleeping bag in a compression sack, but if I have any fear of rain I would add a waterproof bag instead. The Camelbak bladder for this pack is really tough and has the detachable drinking tube too. Any action taken as a result of information, analysis, or advertisement on this site is ultimately the responsibility of the reader. The UW rig has everything you need (well, except a pouch for a water bladder) and nothing that you don’t. I wouldn’t use this as my primary weapon light, but in an emergency it would serve its purpose. More like a Gladius than a knife, I’d leave my wimpy Benchmade knives back at the FOB and roll with some serious metal. Tactical Tailor’s Malice Pack is great, but if you want the Rolls Royce of rucksacks, you need to go with Kifaru. I’m here to tell you, the vitamins and whatever else in those tablets will square you away even more when you’re hungover! In fact, at RAFO Masirah in ’01, it vibrated off the rail of my GUU during an ATV patrol on the SW side of the cantonment area (had it on my rifle then because someone jacked my Surefire when it was racked in the armory). Running out the door isn’t the time to worry about this, so it may make more sense for you to pack your sleeping bag in a waterproof sack regardless. One of these days I am going to pull the trigger and get a Camelbak so that I don’t have to carry it, but I still think the good old bottle is easier in some aspects. For EPW searches (don’t give a s**t what the current politically correct term is) this light is spot on.
Three months later, after they’d moved things around and were putting in new Hescoes and moving the tent lines, I no kidding scuffed it up out of the sound while I was doing post checks.
Patrick’s day when you are running from the back of formation and puking your guts up behind an ICU-90, remember to dump one of those Airborne tablets in a glass of water and drink up! Took it to the armory, blew it out with an airhose, wiped out the bezel and interior with a soft cloth and put it back together. Good to go, same battery, 3+ months buried in the sand (and it even rained twice in there).



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