An epic bug out bag list is an essential resource for any prepper or survivalist.
So, writing a bug out bag list with the best prepper gear is the single greatest action a survivalist can take to swing the odds of survival in their favor.
Now, at this point you may have a few basic questions.
These are important questions. All of them deserve a thorough and detailed answer.
1. What Is a Bug Out Bag List?
A bug out bag is a collection of all the prepper gear and supplies that you need to survive in the wild for 72 hours or more.
AKA a BOB, a GOOD bag, a preppers checklist, a grab bag, or a go bag. The bug out bag is often prepared in advance of any disaster, accident or crisis. It should be ready to take with you at a moment’s notice.
The contents of the bug out bag list can be broken down into 12 key categories of survival or prepper gear. All the items are essential to your survival and those in your care.
Each category includes items that can serve one of a number of different purposes and need to be easily accessible.
A bug out bag list is easy to write, invaluable when the SHTF and if planned well, even the best prepper gear won’t break the bank. Don’t go another week without planning one. Every smart survivalist or prepper has one!
2. Why Do I Need a Bug Out Bag List?
Nick Bostrom, Professor at the University of Oxford and Director of the Future of Humanity Institute, once said that “There is more scholarly work on the life-habits of the dung fly than on existential risks”.
A worrying statement indeed given the ever present threat from a whole host of apocalyptic scenarios.
Natural disasters, terrorist attacks, ecological collapse, economic collapse, war, pandemic and authoritarian governments. A by no means exhaustive list of disasters that are not as unlikely as we might hope.
Are you and your family prepared for these scenarios? How do you imagine you would cope? Do you have a plan?
In life there are people who are content to rely on others and other people who like to be self-reliant.
If you are the latter then the single most important action you can take is to prepare a bug out bag list.
3. How Do I Fine Tune My Bug Out Bag List?
Now, it may be tempting to jump on amazon and buy the latest prepacked bug out bag. I couldn’t advise you more strongly against this course of action.
The problem with these kits is that they are not tailored to your circumstances and needs.
Before you do anything you need to think long and hard about the type of bug out bag you want to put together.
The bag needs to be tailored to your circumstances. To do this you need to balance a number of different criteria to create a versatile, lightweight and durable bag.
We like to think of ourselves as nice people here at Go Apocalypse so we have listed these 5 important criteria below.
1. Budget – When deciding on the prepper gear to buy you need to keep one eye on your overall budget. To help in this task it would be useful to assign a percentage of your budget to each of the 12 categories above.
2. No. of people – You may have to assign a greater proportion of space in the bag to food, clothing, hygiene and shelter depending on whether you are responsible for more people.
3. Climate – Are you in New Mexico or Florida? A lot of the gear you choose is going to be very specific to the local climate. It would be a good idea to map out all the likely locations that you will bug out.
4. Weight – When you bug out are you going to travel a lot each day? Are you and others in your group in good physical form? You need to assess exactly how much you are comfortable carrying. I suggest you have a few trial runs with all your prepper gear packed and then adjust the weight if necessary.
5. Skills & Abilities – Only bring prepper gear that you are completely familiar with and which you have no issue assembling. Everything should be tested before you use it and you need to make sure it is appropriate for you skill level and ability.
If you are able to keep these criteria in mind when choosing your prepper gear then you already have a huge advantage over most people attempting to write a bug out bag list.
So, if you feel ready to begin choosing your gear then crack on. However, if you want to know what gear we recommend then please continue to read. We have gone into quite some detail.
4. What Gear Should I Include?
Now, before I begin I should state that this list is by no means exhaustive. I strongly advise you to add to the items below.
Also, this is my own personal bug out bag list of prepper gear. It is kit that I just couldn’t do without in any survival situation. I don’t expect you to agree with everything I have written. So please enjoy!
Water is high up the list for an forward-thinking primate but there are two challenges for any survivalist or prepper to overcome.
First, the weight. Water is extremely heavy. You don’t want to be carrying any more than you have to. Second, dirty or contaminated water is going to be common place out in the wild. If consumed, it can make you very or sick or even kill you.
So, you are going to need to find solutions to both of these problems.
Food & Cooking
The human body if pushed can go without food for over a week. But given the choice we don’t advise it. You fatigue easily, you are unable to think straight and you can’t defend yourself.
The bug out bag list should include food supplies to keep you alive for at least 72 hours. We recommend well over 2000 calories per day. Be it prepackaged food, food from hunting and foraging or other prepping supplies.
As well as the actual food, it will be useful to have the tools to prepare and cook. But be smart with the weight as this category can soon make your bag very heavy.
The right clothing is the difference between life and death out in the wild. So, here are few ideas to keep in mind.
First, look after your feet. There is nothing more important than a good pair of socks. In fact bring a few good pairs. You will appreciate it after 72+ hours.
Second, you need to stay dry. So, invest in a high quality hard shell jacket. If you go cheap on this option you will definitely regret it.
Third, you need to pack clothes that dry quickly. Be it from excessive sweating or wet weather, you can’t be waiting around for clothes to dry.
And fourth, don’t pack too much. Clothes can take up a lot of space. Take only what you need and nothing more.
The form of shelter you pack is a hotly debated point in the prepper gear and survivalist community.
You need to keep your weight to a minimum while at the same time you don’t want to sacrifice too much of your protection from the elements.
You need to decide whether to go with a tarp or a tent.
We are not going to delve too deep into this topic for fear of unleashing the “internet”. In the end we decided on the tent. But if you want to find out the latest on this topic then check out this debate on stack exchange, this Reddit post, or this Quora question. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.
Fire has a whole of host of different uses in the wild. We use it to keep warm, to cook raw meat and fish, to dry out wet gear, to scare off dangerous animals, and to improve our mood.
It is therefore a good idea to pack a few tools to make fire. The tools need to be both easy to use and weather proof.
Stumbling around blindly at night is just not an option. You need to pack at least one source of artificial light. A good lighting device saves time and keeps you safe.
Lighting, like fire, has a whole host of uses. You may have to move your camp suddenly, investigate an unknown noise, or explore a cave.
Do not leave home without at least something!
In the hours and days following a disaster reliable information is going to be vital to your survival.
It may be necessary to share information with other survivalists camped out nearby or possibly you will need keep up-to-date with a rapidly changing weather situation.
Good information will be useful to when you come to plan your next course of action after the first few day and will help you adapt if circumstances change suddenly.
At any one time in the wilderness you should know exactly where you are. Even if you are moving great distances you still need to have some idea of your location.
When the SHTF some more advanced forms of navigation may become unreliable. Your best option is therefore something we have been using for centuries. The humble map and compass.
It is often something that is at the back of the survivalist’s mind, but personal hygiene becomes very important if you are in the wild longer than 72 hours.
You need to stay clean and maintain good dental hygiene ever out in the wilderness.
There are some tools that are often very specialized to specific tasks. Often the task is next to impossible without this tool.
They tend to save you a lot of time and effort and can be the difference between life and death out in the wilderness.
There are four items that I could not be without and each has a large number of potential uses both on the road and in camp.
Self defense & Hunting
It goes without saying that out in the wilderness you are going to want to both defend yourself and hunt. But the question is with what? A firearm or a bow?
As with the tarp or tent dilemma we don’t want to delve to deep into this issue in this article. In the end after much thought we decided on a bow because they are silent, lightweight and cheap. But if you want to explore this question further then check out this Reddit post or this Quora question.
Murphy’s law states that anything that can go wrong will go wrong. In the wilderness this can mean injury or illness.
The likelihood of these issues occurring is high so you need to be prepared for a number of different medical emergencies.
The best first aid kits are those which are tailored to a person’s needs. We have suggested a basic kit but we advise that you add to it. You need to think about items that are appropriate to the local environment, your age, you level of fitness and any preexisting medical conditions.
A category for the things that just can’t be categorized…
So, that is all I want to say for today. It is now over to you begin the process of writing a bug out bag list with the best survival gear you can source.
Remember the 12 key categories and be sure to balance the 5 criteria mentioned above. Enjoy!
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