As another example, I have water bottles with an integrated filter so I can dip water out of a roadside ditch and safely drink it. If you live in the urban jungle and a hurricane or Nor’Easter is bearing down, you might be wise to leave well ahead of time. This is the flip side of the previous point — you might live in a relatively secure rural location and your primary strategy is to hunker down in the event of some sort of disaster. The previous point illustrates a principle that should apply in all aspects of preparation — contingency planning.
This comes from yet another obsession; this one about OPSEC, or Operational Security, which is being extremely secretive about your emergency planning. It’s WEIRD when people capitalize random WORDS in their SENTENCE as if to emphasize what THEY are saying. Good reply and most of us can figure out why you (and many others) use caps to EMPHASIZE certain words since no-one can hear our voices as we type.
He made a statement you didn’t like, so you focused on an off-topic point to divert the subject. Also lets add to start with practical fundamental preps and work yourself in a circle out of those once established.
And I see these guys plunging into this with no plan of action or sense of practical application. Do any of you have any idea how far into the gas tank you have to go before you start sucking gas? THINK what will happen with all those non-working mouths to feed when they can’t get any food!!! About UsFrom time to time we may share links to various products, and services in our posts, and articles for which we are affiliates, or partners.
A bug out bag contains the essentials you need to live if you are forced to leave your location. The properly loaded Bug Out Bag should give you everything you need to live for 3 days at a minimum so that is the framework of this list. I believe that the items below should go in virtually every bug out bag that is assembled regardless of the reason you are Bugging Out in the first place. Water is essential to anyone’s survival so you must have a plan for carrying it, obtaining fresh water along the way and treating is so that you can drink it without catching a disease that will knock you on your butt at the worst possible time.
Water Bottle – I like Nalgene bottles because they carry a lot, but are very lightweight when empty and the opening fits at least one of the water filters I recommend, the MSR Miniworks EX Microfilter. Extra Capacity – I like the regular Nalgene bottles, but to save trips to the creek, I also pack a backup water container in the Nalgene Wide Mouth Cantene (32-ounce).
OK, water is covered for the most part, now we move to the next most important survival item and that is food.
The second (and preferred) option if I have my choice would be Mountain House Freeze Dried meals designed for camping. I wouldn’t leave the house without sturdy shoes I can walk for a long time in and you should pack appropriate headgear for the season too. The items above should be able to keep you alive if you are out in the elements by yourself.
For the radio I recommend the Baofeng UV-5RA because they are solidly built, offer any feature you can reasonably need for grid down communications and only cost around $35. The tools I consider bringing taking into account weight is a multi-tool like a Leatherman, a good pocket knife like a Tenacious G10 from Spyderco and a larger multi purpose knife like a Gerber LMF II.
The Multi-tool will meet most of your needs for fine tools with pliers, small saw and a wrench.
I know some people throw the entire medicine cabinet in their bug out bags, but again I am only thinking about survival not going to the prom so the basics –  bar of soap, toothbrush, toothpaste, chap-stick, floss, hand sanitizer. For miscellaneous I would add some duct tape which you can wrap around your water bottles, lighters or just about anything else, bandannas which have a thousand uses and spare batteries for any gear that requires them.
I hope this list gives you a lot to think about but more importantly a great start on building your very own bug out bag. Klean Kanteen Wide Mouth Bottle with Stainless Loop Cap for your second, or even first bottle? I used to carry a SIG stainless steel water bottle, but went to the nalgene because it was easier to clean and fit my Miniworks perfectly. Your photo reminded me a lot of my own load out, you had me at UV-5RA and that cold steel tang peaking out of the sheath ?? Check out Ontario Rat 2 (about $26 on Amazon) makes for a better over all use – food prep and around the camp, it has surpassed my use of Tenacious. Imodium AD, Swiss Army Knife (A real one, The Champ or Champion, I think) A very useful tool. A bug out bag is one of the first things a new prepper tackles — and for good reason.
Durable. I have found that certain goods have a high correlation between price and quality.
Keep in mind the primary purpose of a bugout bag — it is not to sustain you indefinitely, but to provide your needs temporarily in case you need to evacuate quickly if a disaster should strike. Now, admittedly, our specific plan involved seven people, so a single bugout bag was not adequate, but it was a good teaching opportunity for everyone in the family. What you put in a pocket EDC will vary a little based on your choice of clothing, which we’ll discuss in the next section. High-tech reflector which makes a tight beam for distance, with a smooth falloff for peripheral illumination. Some other interesting functions: corkscrew, wire stripper, saw, file, mini pen, magnifying glass, compass.
Cargo pants come in dozens of varieties, but what makes them relevant to our discussion is the big pockets. Tactical vests are like fishing vests, but with heavier material and more pockets. The one I wear has concealed carry pockets with a hook-and-loop field so you can attach a holster in them.
In the field, having the equipment and tools needed to complete an assignment can mean the difference between mission success and mission failure. With that exception, the first step in preparing for emergencies is not to quit your job, sell the house, and move to Utah. The first thing you need to do is prepare for likely emergencies.
The most common risk is interruption of public utilities by any number of natural causes, so prepare to eat, drink, shelter yourself, and administer first aid for at least two weeks before you start digging that fallout shelter.
I do product reviews, so I have a lot of gear lying around, most of which adds some measure of convenience, but very little of it is truly essential.
But before I ever owned one of those, I knew how to make a filter with moss, grass, a shirt sleeve, and homemade charcoal.
By all means, be wise about sharing your plans, but no man is an island — you need a support and communications network.
Everybody knows I prep, and a good many people know some of my stock locations, but almost no one knows even half of them, or what is there. Or at the very least, makes people think they are better conveying an assertion, when in reality they are making their paragraph annoying to read. If you are like me, this will invariably lead to a long list of supplies for your bug out bag that sound great, but weigh a ton and have very specific uses that you may not encounter. This bag will have everything you need plus some additional supplies, but careful thought and consideration should be given to what you are putting in this bag. I won’t be packing two weeks’ worth of food in here and most of this list might be considered the bare necessities by some. If you don’t believe me, just think about the last time you were away from home and you got sick. You can’t boil water in a Nalgene Bottle though so you need options for that which we discuss in the Tools section. This allows me to fill up two bottles and that normally lasts me all day unless I am in extreme heat environments.


I also don’t want to have to worry if they have gone bad but I think the biggest thing is that if you are running for your life with everything you need to survive strapped to your back you are going to need some serious calories. I get the pouches that feed two just in case and grab the highest calorie packs you can get. OK the last leg of the survival pyramid is shelter and in this we will count clothing as well as something to keep the elements off you. You want a good pair of long pants, long sleeve shirt, change of underwear and a spare pair of socks.
In the winter I like a beanie to keep my head warm, but again I will most likely be wearing this and won’t have it in the pack. My tent and sleeping bag are easily the heaviest and largest items in my regular backpack for camping. If you are out in the elements with other people, you should consider something for self-defense.
If we have a minor event where you can reasonably expect life to return to normal sometime, a spare cell phone battery might be all you need or a way to charge the phone you have. This won’t allow you to perform surgery in the woods or remove a bullet but cover most of the bases. I carry a Katadyne water bottle with filter and have been researching the mini filters, I like that you and I have the same thoughts on the mini filter. Other things to think about I am older with a bad back so my bag needs to be light as possible.
The pack needs to carry everything you’ll need, but the larger the pack, the higher the weight premium of the bag itself.
Yes, you can survive three days without food, but you can’t perform at peak efficiency.
Your survival knife is a separate item — for your survival kit you want a tiny folding razor, like the one from Vigilant Gear.
A small LED flashlight is all you need to see in the dark, and it fits in your survival kit. In either case, I estimate that my best bugout location is my own home, located in a rural area. In general, depending on the length of your commute, you can get away with just keeping an everyday carry bag in your commuter vehicle. But it is also important to choose the right bag or else this can affect your back, joints, or muscles.
The 8 glass a day is literally ALL over the internet and in books, but ask any nutritionist (NOT dietitian!) worth a damn, and they will tell you water is completely individualistic, based on body type, metabolism needs (cooling), and activity. Cargo pants, vests, and jackets are your friends; just fill the pockets with all the stuff you would have put in the pack. I have previously reviewed a mini survival kit and listed the contents with photos and a video. This is likely an item in your mini survival kit, above, but it’s so important I need to mention it here.
Many models have a large flathead on the bottle opener and a small flathead on the can opener. The idea is to make sure you have your stuff with you, so don’t go overboard; the Bugout Bag goes in the vehicle, not in your pocket! Drago Backpacks are designed to allow the wearer to comfortably carry and efficiently access their gear while on the go. What if your family is scattered around town, and by the time they all get home the escape routes are hopelessly snarled? The only thing that has to change fundamentally is this: You need to regain a certain degree of self-reliance and reliance on reliable resources. In this revealing video an experienced prepper explains which ones he owns and why, and shows you 8 that you may want to consider.
We actually wrote an article that touches upon the topic of compromises you have to make when choosing a gun.
What I wanted to do was create a simple bug out bag checklist you can use to get a jump-start at building your own bug out bag that has taken into consideration a few of the lessons I already learned when I did this myself. Probably, but the essential Bug out bag items will stay the same; you will just add to what we have contained here. The second filter that is great for your bug out bag is the Sawyer Products Mini Water Filtration System. This Nalgene canteen collapses down to virtually nothing so space or weight when it is empty isn’t an issue.
I have seem some people recommend cans of tuna, pop tarts and ramen noodles in your bug out bag. The Breakfast Skillet is excellent and at 680 calories will fill you up and give you much-needed energy for hiking with that pack. Gloves are also a nice addition and I have something that will keep my hands warm in the winter, but something designed for work regardless.  A good pair of leather gloves should be added as well to protect your hands.
Not that a tent is extreme, but tents add a good bit of weight, take time to set up and tear down and are really noticeable from a distance normally.
You can buy very lightweight and compact sleeping bags, but expect to pay at least $400 to save the weight and room in your pack for all the other goodies you need.
The choice of implements for protection vary by the situation you are in and what you could be faced with. If cell service is down your only real option would be walkie talkies which have a very limited range or HAM radios. Pair this radio up with a Slim Jim antenna and 50 feet of coax cable and lastly an adapter connector and you can easily talk or listen to anyone broadcasting 50 to 100 miles depending on where you are. I would augment one of these per bag with a bag of Quick Clot and some larger pressure dressing bandages. I have added a couple of extra niceties to my wife’s BOB only because I know that will improve her outlook should we be forced to bug out.
I would gather your bag’s contents first and then select the bag based upon what you plan on carrying. I also carry a 2 liter water bladder which the second water purification filter will fit into the drinking line. For instance, Wal-Mart’s Great Value brand of canned goods is very good despite its lower price. It actually has a built-in scabbard with a butt cover that allows you to fully conceal a weapon up to 60″ long. If I find myself needing to bug out, I’ll have the option of stuffing the smaller bag to the gills and be able to move a little faster. For example, some people will plan to hunker down at their home in the event of an emergency, so their bugout bag will be designed primarily to get them home. Check your local laws, of course, but make it a top priority to have a gun and some extra ammo. Wool is better because it keeps you warm even when damp, and unlike synthetics it is resistant to scorching. These uber-cheap lights are not the best quality, but I left one on continuously for five days before the light went out. It is well stocked with enough supplies to sustain myself, my family, and a few refugees indefinitely. For instance, we didn’t need seven shelters, but only enough shelters to shelter seven people. But if you travel long distances, you should consider keeping the bugout bag in your vehicle at all times, possibly packing separate bugout bags at work and in the vehicle. Of course, weather is a factor, but almost any climate is suitable for vests, especially the lighter ones similar to fishing vests.


They are good at filtering out very small particles like bacteria and other pathogens, but carbon will extract other contaminants like heavy metals, pesticides, herbicides, and small amounts of oil or gasoline, and improve the taste of the water by removing volatile organic compounds. A concealed carry sleeve on the back panel of the bag easily and comfortably packs your pistol.
Manufactured for maximum durability, Drago backpacks will outlast the toughest jobs and keep equipment protected from the harshest environments, time and time again. For example, I have several types of compact camp stoves that use available fuels like twigs and pine cones to boil a quart or so of water in just a few minutes. This bug out bag checklist is also available as a downloadable PDF so that you can print this out and keep it with you as you build your own bag.
Because you will have to carry all of this stuff and the more you add, the heavier it gets. It isn’t gourmet dining, but it will take the extremes of summer (unless you live on Mars) and give you a ton of calories.
Shorts are nice, but not necessary because you are already living without the convenience of air conditioning most likely so you will already be sweating.
For camping I take a tent, but for Bugging out I would consider a tarp like the ENO Pro Fly Rain Tarp instead of a full tent. In the theme of survival again, I would recommend a Adventure Medical Kits SOL Emergency Bivvy instead of a sleeping bag. I recommend carrying a hand-held HAM radio capable of broadcasting and receiving on UHF and VHF and a dual band antenna that can give you more range. I just don’t see an Ellis Island type of situation happening where you need to show your birth certificate, but anything is possible. That would allow you to carry an additional 2 liters, or even 3 liters if you wanted of water.
Whether you keep it at home, at work, or in your vehicle will depend on your specific circumstances, but the basic idea is that it should always be handy so you can grab it and go on short notice. But my experience with backpacks has been that the cheaper ones are cheaper; the zippers fail, the stitching comes apart, the fabric frays.
Others will need to evacuate their home, and their bugout bag will be designed to get them safely to a bugout location, like a shack in the woods or the grandparent’s homestead in the country. I do stock three days of water, but I’m prepared to ditch it if necessary, because I have stocked a water filter bottle (I prefer the Sport Berkey) and some water purification tablets. Optional: I also have prescription antibiotics and pain-killers in case of a severe injury. Even a poncho helps; this one from Sea to Summit accommodates a large backpack and converts into a two-person shelter. But keep in mind we also get a lot of water from our food, so it depends really what else you have in your go pouch. In this type of EDC you can still carry everything you need for getting home, even water and a change of underwear. The next best thing is to use a striker on anything that will take a spark — cotton or drier lint. I have a Victorinox Swiss Army SwissTool, but honestly, my go-to multitool is the good ol’ fashioned Swiss Army Knife.
The four storage compartments are large enough to tote a first aid kit, binoculars, ammunition, and an iPad will fit perfectly. So don’t put your family at the mercy of an emergency plan that has never seen a drill. Your bug out bag is not something to replace your tool shed and you will not be able to carry everything you want on your back. I wrote a post a while back about weight considerations called “Is Your Bug Out Bag Going to Get you Killed?” and if you need more convincing about weight, maybe you should read that article first. The list of supplies we could put in here is enormous if you start from the perspective of thinking of everything you could possibly need in an SHTF scenario. These are cheaper than a regular bag at around $15, fit in the palm of your hand and only weigh 4 ounces.
Plus, they take regular AAA batteries and not some weird off nomenclature or rechargeable batteries that some of the higher end headlamps do.
If the reason I was bugging out was total bedlam, anarchy I would take a rifle and a pistol.
You have to learn how to use this equipment, but it is in my opinion the single best Bug Out Bag option for communicating if the grid goes down.
I guess I am biased because I have access to my own equipment, but that kit would be useless after the first scenario of cutting yourself pretty badly.
Be cautious making this decision — it depends on availability of water along the way to your bugout location. Depending how many pockets are available, you might have to trim the kit a little, but as always, some equipment is better than none. Certainly the Fenix fits a lot more budgets, but the Lumamax really is a superior tactical light. Strikers are definitely more cool and stuff, so keep one on hand to demonstrate it for the grandkids, but in the real world you’re going to light your fire with a butane lighter. Betadine stains your skin, but it kills germs faster than alcohol while doing less damage to the flesh in open wounds, so I always recommend Betadine pads. If you plan to walk to some remote retreat location with everything you need to live for two years on your bag, you are sadly mistaken.
For the rest of you I will assume that you want to carefully consider the supplies you need in this situation. I don’t like the taste with treatment tablets or chlorine and I don’t want to depend on anything that needs batteries for my drinking water.
If this was a temporary bug out due to a weather event or something that I thought was temporary I might only take a concealed pistol.
Also, First Aid training should always be a must when attempting to put together a kit, because if you don’t know how to use it you will do worse harm and likely waste a great deal of the equipment.
Recently, I was in Arizona with my family for several months working on the Jack Phoenix movie project.
But before you buy any of them, know how to do without them, and spend that money getting your food and water stock up to par.
Your primary location might be compromised any number of ways, so you need a contingency plan for that.
For people like you I have created this simple list of Bug Out bag contents, a downloadable PDF and a little explanation for each. Same with the shirt and in the warm weather, you don’t need to get a sunburn.  What if it is cold? Before we left, we prepared a plan for getting home in the unlikely event of a political or economic disaster, and a bugout bag was an essential part of that plan. Sure, but I am betting the filters above will last me long enough to keep me alive for a few days. You will be wearing warmer clothes anyway so this should already be on your person and not in a pack. Whatever the case, you need someplace to go and some way to get there, all of which are worked out in advance.
Those skills and the mindset undergirding them have been lost, but you can regain them and teach them to the next generation.



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