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Survival Series
Chapter 1: Bug Out Bags
Chapter 2: Survival Intro
Chapter 3: Hoarding
Chapter 4: Home preparation
Chapter 5: Water procurement & storage
Chapter 6: Food storage
Chapter 7: Physical Conditioning
Chapter 8: Cold Weather Preparedness & Survival
Plant Edibility Test
Pet Preparedness
Preparing on a Budget
Suggested Reading
Valuable Information
Critical Assessment
Keeping Your Focus
Home Town Heros
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Bug Out Bags will vary in size and style.  Get to know your options!



Note: This first chapter titled "Bug Out Bags" has been purposely presented out of its usual chronological order.  We did this because one of our first lines of defense in disasters and emergencies is our ability to have water, food and the option of fleeing danger.  We are on a day to day basis as far as our safety and well being is concerned.  Preparing a Bug Out Bag will help us provide immediate emergency insurance if needed.  Don't bother to even read this chapter if you believe  the governments suggestions for preparedness.

Chapter 1: BUG OUT BAGS

A Bug Out Bag is a specially prepared emergency travel bag.  It should be designed and specifically packed for each individual.  These bags should be no larger than a small backpack and should weigh no more than 25 lbs. 

Bug Out Bags should provide enough food and supplies to get you to safety and sustain you for at least five (5) days.  A ten (10) day bag is even better.  Primary concerns are water, food, safety and hygiene.

Different persons will pack a variety of items for their use.  Some items will be universally included such as a flashlight or first aid kit.  Special needs such as personal medications or an extra pair of eye glasses must be considered. 

Bug Out Bags will vary somewhat seasonaly and in the region you live.  The following is a list of suggested items to pack in your Bug Out Bag:

  • Water - enough for 8 hours (you can only carry so much bottled water)
  • Water purification tablets
  • Water filter - 1 liter/200 refill type or straw
  • Survival tablets
  • Energy/Survival bars
  • Comfort foods - candy bars, gum, mints
  • Other food choices: nuts, dried fruit, foil packed meats & fish, soup packets (to be re-hydrated), cheese & peanut butter cracker packs, instant coffee, beef jerky, drink mixes, tea bags, etc.
  • Waterproof matches - in waterproof match box
  • Magnesium fire starter
  • Lighter
  • Flashlight  (don't forget the batteries!)
  • Radio - AM/FM & if possible shortwave.  Windup is the best choice
  • Signal mirror (can double as camp mirror if needed)
  • First aid kit - include needed personal medications, a tourniquet and compression bandages
  • Hand towel
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Sun glasses
  • Reading glasses
  • Hygiene kit - toothbrush, toothpaste, bar soap, deodorant, small scissors, nail clippers, small bottle of chlorine bleach
  • Sewing kit
  • Poncho - liner optional
  • Compass
  • 550 cord - 50'
  • Snare wire - string/small pole
  • Fishing kit
  • Extra pair of socks - in waterproof bag
  • P38 can opener
  • Knives - folding and fixed blades
  • Small knife sharpener
  • Latex gloves
  • Safety pins
  • Zip lock sandwich & food storage bags
  • Tape - electrical & duct
  • Money - paper & change
  • Emergency blanket
  • Sun screen
  • Insect repellent
  • Canteen - collapsible water bottle
  • Stainless steel cup - military type is best
  • Mess kit - includes knife, fork & spoon
  • Potassium Iodate or Iodide
  • Metal protectant sheets - WD-40 wipes
  • TOILET PAPER!!  a day without toilet paper can be living hell!  Take the cardboard center out of the roll and store in a zip lock bag.

Other items to consider:

  • Hats, caps & gloves
  • Vitamins
  • Herbal supplements & remedies
  • Wire saw
  • Pace counter
  • Small bible
  • Signal flares
  • Hand crank cell phone charger
  • Cyalume sticks a.k.a. glow sticks
  • M.R.E.S. - these are very good mission operation foods.  They are just too big & bulky for Bug Out Bags.
  • Trioxane stove & fuel
  • Gas mask - NBC rated w/unactivated filter
  • Candles

Food and perishable items should be checked and rotated for freshness.

Special note:  I feel that guns are an absolute part of survival.  If you're including firearms in your Bug Out Bag, hand guns are the obvious choice.  Include extra ammunition and a quality holster that incorporates accessibility, comfort, retention of firearm, and concealability.  See our FIREARMS chapter coming soon for more detailed information.

ALWAYS FOLLOW YOUR STATE AND LOCAL LAWS - If any still exist when you need your Bug Out Bag.


Our cars, trucks, SUVs and motor homes should always be stocked with a variety of items.  Bug out bags are limited due to their relatively small storage capacity.  Vehicles however are able to carry many things we just can't fit into a small bag.  No doubt that in many scenarios vehicles may have to be abandoned, but these additional packed supplies can be an extra advantage and comfort as long as you stay with your vehicle.  Supplies and equipment can also be bartered or traded in an emergency situation. 

Strongly consider these items for your vehicle storage:

  • Small shovel
  • Sleeping bag(s)
  • Blanket(s)
  • Pillow(s)
  • Bottled water
  • Small tent
  • Small grill (propane) or stove with adequate fuel
  • Axe, hatchet or saw
  • Extra clothing (consider seasonal needs - boots, socks, rain gear)
  • Assorted can goods & boxed prepared dinners
  • MRE's
  • 5 gallon water container - filled
  • 2 gallon gas can - empty
  • Fishing gear
  • Mechanics tool kit
  • Hunting gear
  • Sun shower
  • Lantern - battery or propane
  • Defensive gear - You know what we mean