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Bug Out Bag

A bug out bag is intended to get you through the first 72 hours (or more) of an emergency situation. It should be light enough to transport while still containing all of the most essential items. What a bug out bag contains is based upon the individual’s needs, the local climate, and what type of territory it will be used in. However, bug out bags almost universally contain the following items:


Pack enough water for at three days plus a method of water purification: iodine or bleach (in the correct amount for water treatment), water filter, or a way to boil water. Water can get heavy, but it is a necessity to survive and it can be hard to locate a safe source when infrastructure goes down.


Ready-made meals, energy bars, and dried snacks are all common staples in a bug out bag. Find foods that are nutritious, filling, easy to prepare on the go, do not require refrigeration, and are light enough to carry.


Two changes of clothing, a sturdy pair of shoes, outerwear for the weather (coat and raincoat), layers, socks, hat, and bandana.


Tarp or tarp and tent (The majority of tents are not made for bad weather, but if you put a tarp over the top with the tarp edges extended out beyond the width of the tent you should stay dry. It helps to dig a trench around the tent to capture rainwater and keep it away from the tent.)


A bedroll/sleeping bag and a sleeping pad. Do not use an air mattress in cold weather unless you have a thick layer of blanket between it and you. The air mattress will capture all of the cold air and you will end up sleeping on something with a temperature equivalent to a large ice cube.

First Aid

A more than basic first aid kit. Try to get (or create) one that is useful for many emergencies. An emergency foil blanket is a good addition to any first aid kit. As is a snakebite kit, especially if you intend to camp out after a natural disaster when snakes and other animals may be displaced and distressed due to the weather.


This depends on what you are comfortable carrying and familiar with using. Firearms are the standard; however, knives and weapons that are more creative can be useful as well. If you are worried about others seeing the weapon, you may want to consider something more innocent appearing such as a heavy tool.


Don’t forget to pack any needed medications, a way to make fire, light (flashlights and batteries or lantern), a way to cook (camper’s stove or pot), a can opener if bringing canned items, cash, and a leatherman (multi tool) or knife.

1 Comment
  1. We keep a bug out bags both at our home and in our car; you never know when disaster will strike!

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