We’re always being asked what should go in a Bug-out Bag. Thing is, there are different sizes. I have an emergency kit that fits in a small pocket-sized tin that has fire, light and fishing equipment. What you need in your BoB varies. Here we have made lists of what we have. Added together you’d be all set for any eventuality that saw you leaving your home. Either fleeing from a home or just forced to shelter in the wilderness.
You will see things we haven’t included that your family might need. But this is a good place to start.
The pocket pouch is a small leather pouch that remains in your pocket at all times. Its contents may vary but here are the basics:
2 Benadryl capsules ( for allergic reactions ).
2 Maglite bulbs—Same size as your ﬂashlight.
2 U.S. quarters.
A very small ﬂat ﬁle.
Artiﬁcial sinew—Dental ﬂoss is a good substitute. It’s waterproof and strong.
Basket Needle—That’s a big needle.
Bic lighter ( wrap a hair tie or elastic band around it ).
Brass wire wrapped on a metal sewing machine bobbin. • Use Christmas wreath wire from a craft store.
Magnesium ﬁre starter.
P-38 can-opener—The army version, it’s about an inch long.
Seam ripper—From a sewing or craft store.
Sewing needles ( glovers’ needles ) for sewing leather.
Small ﬂat screw driver.
Three ﬁsh hooks.
Toe nail clippers—They cut light wire, dental ﬂoss etc.
“Uncle Bill’s” tweez- ers—Available in sport goods stores.
Second item in the series of three. Not always carried but goes with the big backpack.
The fanny pack contains:
50 feet of 550 cordage— Military surplus or sportsman catalog.
Made up of 7 strands which can be unraveled for lighter uses.
6′ of ﬂexible plastic tub- ing—3/8″—basically it’s a giant drinking straw for your solar still.
6 × 6 6mil plastic sheet ( clear)—Home Depot. A shower curtain will work if it’s very light colored or clear.
Boonie hat—Broad- brimmed sun hat that protects ears and neck. Military surplus stores.
Dark cotton work gloves ( insect sprayed ).
Eye wash cup.
Goggles with extra dark lenses.
Iodine crystals—Sporting goods store.
Liquid soap—Will serve more purposes than anti- bacterial handwash, like lubing things.
Maglite ﬂashlight (AA size) —keep on a lanyard.
Metal spoon—Serves many purposes, make sure it’s a strong one.
One large oval carabiner. Playtex rubber gloves.
Rechargeable AA batteries.
Saw blades—Metal and wood versions from power tool it work well.
Sea sponge (feminine hygiene). For internal use. You may prefer to pack a few strips of terry towelling to wash’n’wear, alternately. Pack extra safety pins.
Skull cap ( like motorcycle riders wear).
Small sharpening stone.
Snakebite kit—Drugstore version. Be advised, they’re not that great.
Sponge ( for water gathering ).
Tuna ﬁsh can—Empty 6ozs can. 101 uses: digging, cooking, as a cup, a lamp base.
Being prepared to go mobile is always important. A backpack is like having your house on your back.
Contents: ( this is our list—you may want other items )
100 feet of 550 cordage. 2 bandanas – Use them as a handkerchief, a pot- holder, whatever.
20 lb breakdown child’s hunting bow—WalMart or any sporting goods store should have one. Remember to practice. You can use sharpened small sticks, or even pencils as arrows.
70 oz. (or larger) Camel-bak—This is a water back pack with a straw to your mouth.
96 oz. Collapsible Nalgene water bottle.
Bo staff – This is a martial arts stick. You’ll need to ﬁnd a specialist store. Consider a rubber tip to give better traction and silence the tapping noise it can make on rock.
Broad-brimmed fur felt hat with chin strap—Sporting goods or cowboy store. Felt sheds water and keeps the sun off.
Compression bandage — A Kotex would do.
Compression sacks ( 2 ) —From a sports or camping store. These bags squeeze air out of bulky items such as sleeping bags or clothes to save space.
Ensolite pad—One of those sleeping pads available from a camping store such as rei or Sears. The dense foam can be cut up and used for padding.
Expedition weight ﬂeece long john under- wear—top and bottom.
Fleece sleeping bag.
Gaiters—Prevents stuff like snow, water and stones from getting in your boots.
I qt. Nalgene wide mouth water container.
Internal frame pack.
Large safety pin—and some small ones.
Large scarf—Get the regulation Army issue scarf. It’s a multi-purpose item that can swathe your head and neck, double up as clothing, a bandage, a papoose, a
sheet, a carrying device – almost anything you can think of.
Leather belt—It’s to hold your pants up. Yep, in an emergency or disaster situation you’ll lose weight surviving and you need to keep your hands free for important stuff.
Leather gloves—Protect your hands from cuts and bites.
Metal can with a removable metal handle—That’s a #10 can with a bent coathanger!
Military coat liner—light-weight nylon.
Military pant liner—light-weight nylon.
Mosquito head net— Sporting goods store.
Nylon shorts—Durable and they dry fast.
Plastic sheet—6′ × 6’—for solar still.
Poncho—Nylon rain poncho.
Poncho liner ( lightweight nylon insert)—Military version is quilted for extra warmth. You can sew two together and stuff with leaves (wet or dry) to provide shelter and warmth.
PVC raincoat—top ( with hood ) and bottom—100% water-proof and very cheap. Resist the tempta- tion to pay more for a fancy one!
Sand water filter tube (end of water bed tube).
Small day pack.
Solar battery charger. Space blankets (2).
Tent ﬂy (for debris gathering ).
U.S. Forest Service Fire tent—This is the ﬁre shelter that forest ﬁre-ﬁghters use if they get caught in the blaze. You curl up in it and wait for the flames to pass over you. You probably don’t need one if you live in wetlands.
Wool gloves—For warmth.
This pack goes to work with you. It goes in your car. It is designed in case you’re stranded and have to walk back home.
00 steel wool—For ﬁre making.
9 volt battery—Same thing.
Baseball type hat.
Book for reading.
Can of tuna.
Candle. Chapstick. Cordage.
Cotton work gloves. Extra eyeglasses.
Large plastic trash bag.
Map (several designated meeting places and routes of travel ).
Warm long underwear.