The Bug Out Bag

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Bram van Munster
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The Bug Out Bag

Post by Bram van Munster » Mon Sep 10, 2018 7:54 pm

The Bug Out Bag

When shit hits the fan, you want to be able to get out of the immediate dangerous situation.
You grab just one bag which contains everything you may need in the first few days.
These SHTF situations don't have to mean the end of the world is near, it can of course be a natural disasters like a flood or earthquake, but also accidents like a fire breaking out thanks to the neighbor leaving the stove on.
*cough*We-don't-leave-our-fires-on*cough* right?

Anyways, the best way to get out of the danger-zone is to run, and that's what we naturally do. It is just soon after we ran, we realize there are SO many things that got left behind which we (may) need soon, and we can't go back to just get it. And that is where the BOB comes in really handy.
Unlike the GHB (Get Home Bag), the BOB has to contain everything you can possibly need for the first 72 hours or longer. Proper Preppers don't need more time to get to their BOL (Bug Out Location) to stay alive. So what can you possibly need?

For each person, you'll need a separate bag. This is because every person has different needs! The most obvious difference is of course the difference between males and females and their respective hygiene needs. After personal needs, you will be needing papers and money, memory items and security.
Sooner rather than later, you're going to need something like ID, drivers license and such. Though usually you carry those in your wallet, think about putting your passport, travellers checks and such in your BOB.
I think money won't needs much of an explanation, so I won't.
With memory items I mean things from the past. Pictures from the kids when they were young, jewelry that reminds you of things, just a few of the things that are precious to you. Never assume you can carry every memory with you, but should you have to leave in a hurry, it's very nice and comforting when you have something like that.
During a SHTF event, people are usually very stressed, especially when your family is not the only family that has to run. In such cases it is very wise to have a sense of security, living in the knowledge you can protect your family against the worst case scenario. Imagine, you're trying to leave town, and so do thousands of others. Someone's car broke down and the driver is trying to stop other vehicles. Suddenly, this driver tries to hijack your car so he can get away. Trust me, having any means of protection with you is something you don't want to do without in situations like this.

So, we've covered hygiene, ID, money, memory and security. What else can we need during the first 72 hours?
Food and water of course. You can think of a few MRE's per person (Meal Ready to Eat) or instant noodles, canned food and bottled water, just make sure your BOB does not get too heavy to carry. What I did, was to add a water filter (the Sawyer Mini) to my BOB, so all I need to do is find water and I'm set. As long as it is maintained and doesn't freeze while wet, it will filter 150,000 gallons ( 375.000 liters ) of water before you need to replace it. Instant food weighs a LOT less than canned food, but also is less nutritious, so I made sure to spread out the odds a bit, and have 3 MRE's, 3 instant noodle thingies, and I have bread-mix to which I only have to add water, mix, bake and I have a bread. Of course I have a pot with me too. To wash away the meals I have a zip-lock bag with coffee and a crusader cup. That should get the day started!

I have also packed some clean clothes, 2 full sets, so socks, pants, underwear, shirt, long sleeved blouse, sweater, and added a rain poncho and warm hat to that. Besides the fact it is lovely to have something warm and clean to wear, you can't wear the clothes you have on for ever and ever. When there is a flood going on and you had to wade through the water, you're gonna get cold really soon unless you have something dry to put on, the same goes for when it's raining or snowing.

The bag is nearly full, isn't it?

Wrong, because you'll need more stuff. Assume you won't have power all the time, so it's nice to have a torch with you. If you are really unable to find a hand cranked torch, make sure you're carrying batteries. Your phone will die soon as well, so a charged battery pack can save a lot of trouble. Eventually, it will die too though, so make sure you'll have a laminated piece of paper with the contact information of those you may need to reach when SHTF. They'll have the tendency to worry too much, even though you're well prepared, so make sure you can call or e-mail them. Also, have a map of the area, so that if you take a wrong turn, you won't have to rely on navigation systems which will only drain your batteries.

Speaking of being well prepared, I never assume I'll have a car all the time, so I also have a tarp, paracord, hammock, with me when I have my BOB with me.

You see, I have covered the basic needs of every human in a survival situation: Food, water, shelter, warmth, security and navigation. It all fits in one backpack, with room to spare. The rest of the room is filled up with the same stuff you'll find in a bushcrafters pack, such as fire making tools, knives, ax, snares, multi-tool and a folding saw. I'm sure you're creative enough to fill up the rest of your bag too, with things you may want or need, but the important thing is to stay alive and get to the BOL with the BOB when SHTF, and preferably as comfortable as possible.

Stay safe out there!!!

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