Saturday, September 25, 2010

Old Bug-out-Bag Loadout

The following is the contents of my older bug-out bag. It has since received many adjustments but I figured it might be good to show what it used to be, and what it has become. 

For those who don't know, a 'Bug out Bag' or 'Get outta dodge bag' is a backpack or some kind of bag that contains everything you'd need to survive for 2-5 days if you had to suddenly, and immediately depart your current residence or way of life.  In thinking before such an event, one can clearly think out and prepare and pack, whereas in the event of suddenly needing to depart, you'll forget too much, which could be potentially hazardous and deadly. If you've ever gone on a trip and packed the day of or the night before, you've undoubtedly forgotten things, like toothbrushes or a tie or something.

if you were packing for your life and survival, the things you'd forget might cost you your life!  

In the movie "War of the worlds" Tom Cruise informs his family at one point that 'we're leaving this house in 5 minutes.' Would you know what to bring? What to take, what's important?  My bag is stored near my door, and sometimes I take it to work in my car, so that I can easily pick it up and walk out the door.  I'll get into this more in future posts. 

For now, here is the contents of my old bag:

A.  First Aid Kit. I found this in the dumpster at the end of the year and I still haven't figured out why it was being thrown out. After getting rid of some extraneous stuff and adding certain things, it contains, among other things:
- ACE bandage
- Medical Tape, Gauze
- Band-Aids of Assorted Size
- Antiseptic Wipes
- Alcohol Wipes
- Iodine
- A bottle of Multivitamins
- Ibuprophen
- Latex Gloves
- Needle and Thread
and as it is bulky and waterproof, I've also put important documents and maps in there
B. Clothes. Simple and lightweight, Tshirts, a change of Pants, Long Underwear tops and Bottoms, Several Changes of Underwear and Socks, a wool sweater. 
C. Scissors, Handkerchiefs
D. Wool Gloves with cut-finger tips and a Mitten Fold Down. (Hobo Gloves)
E. "Camel Bak" style soft water container.  holds about 2-3 liters of water, tube connects to shoulder straps for easy acess and hydration.
F. Navigation Gear - Compass, laminated Maps of Northeast United States, Individual States, Elevation and Terrain Maps as well as Roadmaps.  Compass attached to caribiner and carried on outside for easy access and navigation, as well as markers for checkpoints and other stuff. Additionally I've pre-plotted a route to my destination as well as marked water sources and areas to avoid (high population, frequently used, or marshes)
G. Personal Hygiene Products - Floss, Toothpaste and a Brush, Chapstick, etc etc.
H. Water Filter - This is a handy water bottle that can filter any water into potable drinking water.  Combination micro filter and charcoal filter - you fill the bottle up, put the cap/filter on, and just squeeze water into mouth. Good for like 500 gallons of water, I think. 
I. Thermarest Collapsable Pad. - This is super important for staying warm and comfortable at night. If you've ever camped and forgotten on you'll know what I mean. The sleeping bag is not enough, no matter how cold its rated to keep you warm. You need some way to further separate yourself from the ground. Airmattresses are great but if I have to break the camp quickly its going to take a while to decompress them, which is why i opted for a thermarest instead. 
J. Rations.  Powerbars, Rice, Bullion Cubes, Beef Jerky. Stuff that'll keep 
K. Hand-Wound Flashlight. 
L.  Chemical Hand and foot warmers, hand sanitizer, large plastic ziplock bags
M. Large waterproof poncho, leather shoestrings
N. Synthetic Rope. The orange stuff is thick and could be used for shelters, hoisting rations and meat out of reach of bears and wolves, and other stuff, while the thinner black rope in the center has multiple uses. Additionally, if you take it apart the threads on the inside can be used for sewing or fishing line. 
O. Hemp Twine - after you get it wet it tightens a bit, like leather, so you can use it for fastening stuff for implements. 
P. Throwing Knives.  While impractical for defensive use unless you're REALLY good at throwing 'em, I find they'll be useful for constructing spears for fishing or defense, as they can easily be lashed to the end of a stick. 
Q. Space Blanket/Tarp - one side is space blanket which would help to keep me warm or reflect a fire's heat back down at me, the other side is a tarp protecting me from the elements. 
R. Machete with Saw on opposite edge.  Cutting down saplings, clearing paths, and defense (as its quite imposing against an unarmed or knife-carrying opponent) I've got this set up for easy access while the bag is on, while keeping it relatively well hidden.S. (not shown) 55-65lb  Compound Bow and 8 Arrows, with Broadhead Tips. 

There are other things that I chose not to show, like a fishing kit, forks and knives, campware and such.  But basically there it is. 

This bag is meant to get me from point A to B, allowing me to scrounge a bit of food and perhaps other equipment on the way.  Go bags and Bug out Bags are by no means a permanent solution to a sudden paradigm shift, more of a solution for the time.  It is impractical to believe that you'll simply go off into the woods and mountains and live off the land alone while society crumbles. 

For me, its get home, meet up with family or friends, then plan from there


  1. wow, some useful information here!


  2. Oh my. I think I'll prepare one of those bag and keep it permanently in my car. Just in case ;)

  3. thanks for following my blog. here to return the favor.

  4. Pretty nice kit you have there! must be a pain carrying it though :(

  5. Very interesting post dude. Look forward to more in the future! Keep in touch.

  6. interesting stuff mate, seems like a good thing to keep around

  7. Very informative. I've made one but its not as good as yours, I'll have to tweak mine.

  8. Hey i was checking out your blog... you got Fanta5tic stuff.. get back at me when u get new updates ;)

  9. Always be prepared for everything at all times.

  10. The thought of a bug out bag never even crossed my mind, and it's seems you've thought of everything, very nice post.


    Lifehack's guide to a better BJ are out now!

  11. I love brainstorming how to handle apocalyptic events, especially following a good zombie flick, or after playing Fallout 3.

  12. Nice post - keep up the good work! ;)

  13. Gotta be prepared for a zombie invasion

  14. Even though I lol'd at the machete.. this package could be pretty useful someday.. even without a global catastrophe.

  15. I cannot recommend strongly enough to replace/supplement that hydration bladder with a steel water bottle. Preferably wide mouth.

    Also, a good carbon steel knife. The throwing knives are ok for spears or whatever, and the machete is a good chopping tool...But a good general purpose knife is important. A frost Mora Laminated knife costs less than $20 bucks, and mine has lasted me as my primary bushcraft knife for more than six years through a LOT of hard use.