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I’ve gotten myself into a little friendly competition with Tyler Kee. RF has given each of us $200 with which to build the perfect bail-out bag — a kit that you could grab from your car and be able to fight and survive for a minimum of 24 hours before resupply — and once we have the kits, he’s planning on putting us through the wringer to make us prove which one of us did it better. And naturally, our misery will be recorded for your viewing pleasure. I’m already dreading him making us spend a hot summer night outside here in South Texas. Something about the combination of heat and fire ants. Anyway, do you have a kit? What’s in yours?

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  1. Depends on the scenario, but for most emergencies I’d probably at least put the 200 bucks in a bag. You can’t buy much survival gear for 200 bucks. Maybe a decent sleeping bag.


    • Are you planning on using that money to buy yourself out of the brush?

      Nick, take a tip from someone who makes his living in deep South Texas, 3/4 of that bag needs to be water related. Get a really big camelbak, and 5 or 6 quart canteens (much easier to fill than a bladder in a hurry). Take only 2 or 3 scavenged MREs, as critters like rabbits, dove, and hogs are ridiculously dense in most areas, If you feel like dressing and cooking them, that is. For bedding, take a camp hammock and a poncho liner, NOT A SLEEPING BAG!! You do NOT want to be on the ground with the creepy crawlies that live around here ( ever heard of a Windscorpion? Plus the snakes ). The nights probably wouldn’t get cold enough to warrant even the poncho liner, but take it to be safe. As for little things, take a hand pump water filter and some water purification tablets, a good heavy knife or light hatchet, and a fire building kit.
      I’m sure you already have the basics covered, like a couple of pairs of sturdy pants, a leatherman, a boonie hat, hanky, heavy long sleeved shirt, good boots, sturdy belt knife, and maybe a pair of gloves. I’ll leave the battle load up to you.

      • OK, that was written before I was fully awake. Here’s the more sane version;
        I go camping now and then in South Texas, mostly in McMullen county, but also ranging farther South to Webb, an much farther west to the Davis mountains. My usual 3 day gear setup isn’t much different from that most ultralight campers use, but It has some important modifications that could keep you alive if you get lost or stuck in the brush.
        I’ll just list the items that are more suited to South Texas.

        *lightweight hammock; never, ever sleep on the ground in South Texas, there are some pretty wicked creatures moseying around at night.
        *poncho liner, is plenty warm enough for our summer nights, and can be rigged as a shelter.
        *a big camelbak bladder, but also 4 or five 1 quart plastic canteens, as they are easier to fill in a hurry and are not prone to getting punctured by thorns like a bladder is.
        *a handheld water filter; you will invariably run out of water an shave to refill from a trough or nasty pond, so both a filter and purification tablets are a must. I like the Katadyn Hiker microfilter.
        *thick, sturdy pants and sturdy long sleeved shirts; I’ve been camping with friends who think it’ll be cool to go in shorts and a T-shirt, and end up with horribly cut up legs and sunburned arms. I prefer a good pair of wrangler jeans, and LL beans’ cotton canvas long sleeved shirts are the best i’ve tried.
        *a good pair of boots can make a helluva difference in how your trip turns out. I love my pair of OTB Desertlite boots for the summer, and a good pair of lace up leather work boots for winter.
        *A first aid kit; mine consists of mostly stuff for treating small cuts scrapes and burns, but also things like splints, tourniquets, and eye dressings.
        *a good belt knife and a lightweight hatchet for dressing game, making shelter, etc. Don’t forget the sharpener!
        *a small fire building kit, with whatever cooking utensils you need, If you’re going to live off the land.

        As for guns, I usually leave my pistol in its holster, along with mags and mag pouches, in a easy to reach place in my pack while I’m trekking, and put it on my belt when camp gets set up or I drop my pack to go scouting, as it just gets in the way with both a rifle and pack jostling for attention. I carry my rifle when going cross-country, and it’s never very far from reach in camp. I also like to carry a small satchel in my pack, containing rifle ammo, a canteen, and a few Clif bars for when I need to travel light.
        I know it sounds like I’m some wacko survivalist, but I really just do it all for fun. for some reason, humping a 35 lb. pack and rifle through the brush and over the mountains relaxes me, and plus I like to be in the middle of nowhere so I can try out long range shooting techniques, new gear, and generally get to hang out with mother nature for a little while.

  2. Shouldn’t you ask the question AFTER the winner is determined? Feels a bit like cheating. 😉

    $200 isnt alot of money.
    I’d probably spend about $60 on a LM Wave alone.

  3. My standard kit is in backpack form and has all essentials needed for 3 days.

    My shotgun and 55 round bandoliers are always close to me and my handgun sits in its shoulder holster with ammo pouches under the other arm.

    I like to keep a wide range of shot shells on my bandoliers from bird to buck, low-recoil and magnum slugs, and a few “specialty” rounds for the just in case stuff.

    Other go-bags have stuff for other emergencies with stuff like gas mask, camp tools & furniture, water, dry goods, medical supplies, canned goods, ect. ect. ect.

    Once you have “prepped” for a certian type of emergency you begin to realize that different situations require different stuff to live, like short-term power outages, or a long term EMP burst type senario.

    So your “prepping” never really ends but is updated as time goes on depending on you & your wallet!

  4. lol wut? $200? You can get a hi-point, a box of ammo and a couple snickers bars for that much, and throw it in a shopping bag. The msrp on my molle backpack was far more than $200, it is a Kelty Falcon 4000 cause I was too broke to afford a Ebelstock. Botach had them on clearance for $125 ($300 normally) but theyre out of stock now.

      • What you don’t keep an AK in your trunk? Best think about High Point firearms, you can buy one with a box of ammo and still have enough to buy food and water for three days. Add two pairs of clothes, a random bag from the house and you least favorite flash light and this challenge is done.

  5. I’d rather deal with a zombie apocalypse than my girlfriend when her blood sugar dips. But we don’t always get to pick the battles, so I keep a couple granola bars next to my neon green pistol bayonet.

  6. My Survival Bag fits in small assault pack. Weapons and ammo needed to dispatch 2 legged varmits are are not really a part of this bag.

    Multi-use items:
    1. Very small folding knife
    2. Larger “Survival” type knife for chopping, etc.
    3. Pencil style Diamond knife sharpener
    4. Small AA Battery LED Flashlight with strobe
    5. Small Gerber-brand axe
    6. Small Gerber machete
    7. Small Gerber collapsible saw
    8. Chainsaw type hand saw
    9. Camo and green Para-cord, day-glow yellow paracord.
    10. Survival kit in a can (Small commercial kit containing small essentials)
    11. Two compasses (one heavy duty, one silva orienteering compass).
    12. Leatherman tool
    13. Heavy duty aluminum foil (signal, food prep, fire reflector, containers)
    14. Large heavy-duty zip-ties (for shelter, splints, etc)
    15. Notepad with waterproof paper and Space-pen.

    1. Air Force signal mirror
    2. H&K Flare pistol with 26.5 mm flares, ., .22 LR insert)
    3. Military-type Smoke Grenade
    4. Strobe with D-Cell Battery (for night signaling)
    5. Magnesium fire starter
    6. Aluminum foil
    7. Small AA Battery LED Flashlight with strobe
    8. Emergency foil “blankets”

    Water capture and purification
    1. .7 Mil 9x 12 plastic drop cloth for solar still
    2. 6 feet clear plastic hose
    3. Small container
    4. Duct tape
    5. Iodine tablets
    6. Collapsible Nalgene bottle
    7. U.S. Army 1 quart canteen and cover

    Fire Starters
    1. Magnesium fire starters
    2. Steel wool (use with D-Cell from Strobe)
    3. Small bag of dryer lint
    4. Small magnifying glass
    5. Glycerin & Potassium permanganate (sealed, packaged separately and stored far apart)

    Animal collection
    1. .22 cal insert for H&K pistol, and 100 rounds CCI ammo (including birdshot), .410 shotgun shell insert (30 rounds, including buckshot)
    2. Mouse traps and rat trap (good trip wire device).
    3. Fishhooks and monofilament line
    4. Mosquito netting (for protection from skeeters, catching frogs, minnows, bait etc.)
    5. U.S. Army issue tripwire
    6. 4 ea “Yo-yo” fishing devices
    7. Trot line
    8. Peanut butter packet from MRE (for baiting traps, etc)
    9. Cracker packet from MRE (For baiting traps, etc)
    10. Small vial of Rodenone insecticide (fish-killer)

    1. U.S. army poncho
    2. Duct tape
    3. Heavy duty garbage bags (also for creating flotation devices for river crossings).
    4. Emergency foil “blankets”

    First Aid Kit
    1. Commercial first aid kit supplemented to address larger burns and lacerations
    2. Neosporin cream
    3. Blood clot
    4. U.S. Army issue compresses
    5. Butterfly sutures
    6. Tape
    7. Burn gel
    8. Tick remover
    9. Scissors
    10. Various small clamps and other medical tools

    1. SoS food labs Emergency food rations (Each packet contains 9 fortified food bars providing 3682 Kcal)
    2. 2ea MRE accessory packet (sugar, salt, pepper, coffee, creamer, etc)

    Misc. Snivel gear
    1. Mosquito netting
    2. Small container of sun tan lotion
    3. Carmex lip balm
    4. Small container of 100% deet insect repellent
    5. German military issue emergency sunglasses

    • Don’t you think the two saws, the machete, and the ax are overkill? I’d pick one of the four. How much does the whole thing weigh, anyway?

      This is really weird pack, Joe. In some areas, you’re way over-prepared (mouse traps? In a 24 hour pack?); in others, way under-prepared (two quarts won’t get you far if you need to walk a long distance on a hot day. You may not have a source of water, so don’t count on the tablets. And you may not have time to set up your still.)

      I’d ditch the aluminum foil and the signal mirror, and invest in some technology. A cell phone without a plan can still call 911. Or maybe an emergency radio of some sort.

      Just my 2 cents.

      • The pack comes in at right around 25-28 pounds. Its not really a “24-hour” pack at all. It’s more of a one week / one-month / indefinate-stay-in-the-boonies pack. I take some or all of it with me on virtually every outdoor trip I make.

        Obviously, this pack is designed for a person that has extensive knowledge of edible plants and trapping techniques – hence not much in the way of food is included in the pack. IMHO, the best survival “tool” is your brain – and all the knowledge you have crammed into it. I certainly don’t know everything, but I have trained in, and learned the edibles of, many different environments, from Florida everglades, Louisana swamp, Arkansas hill country forest, New Jersey Pine Barrens, Hawaii rainforest, Panama jungle, Southeast Asia jungle, Rocky Mountain sub-alpine forest, SW desert (including Death Valley, Grand Canyon, etc), and lately Ive been learning more about the Pacific NW rainforest and high desert. The only aspect of survival where I don’t feel very prepared is Alaska-type winter / snow survival. I had a chance to go to the U.S. Army Winter Survival School (or whatever they call it), but I decided to go to Jungle School in Panama instead.

        As for water: in most environments, water is available if you know where to look. I live in the Pacific NW so water is seldom an issue – even in the high desert. (hypothermia tends to be the biggest potential problem here, so fire starters are essential). The solar stills can make additional water in hot environments (so long as you are not on the move) and the contractor grade trash bags can be used to carry additional water. Often, you can find additional water containers (Glass bottles, old coke pastic 2 liter bottles, etc) that have been left as trash. Having said that, if I were expecting to be going in a West Texas-to-Arizona desert-type environment or grassy plains environment, I would definately have more water containers (ideally, 3 to 4 gallons worth, but at 8 pounds per gallon, you have to make some tradeoffs).

        As for the duplication of cutting equipment: I’ve spent many years learning and practicing wilderness survival / bushcraft, but I’ve never found one cutting tool that is right for all occasions. So admittedly, I’m a bit indecisive on cutting tools. Also, my pack is intended to be further subdivided to get rid of heavier items if needed. The core survival-kit-within-a-kit weighs less than three pounds, and fits into a small buttpack.

      • Also, I’m very surprised to hear to say that you would ditch the aluminum foil. Heavy duty aluminum foil is one of my top-priority items.

        Probably the most obvious use of aluminum foil is to use it as a cooking vessel. Fish and meats are best cooked with foil over any other method. Roots and tubers are also best cooked this way (assuming extensive boiling is not needed to make the tubers palatable). Wrap whatever food you want to cook in foil and throw it in a batch of smoldering coals. I usually fish the coals out of the main fire and deposit them in a hole. Throw in the foil-wrapped food and bury with dirt. Wait an hour or so. Unearth the foil, open and eat. Aluminum foil can be used to fashion eating bowls and other containers.

        Advanced survivalists (or anyone who has watched Bear Grills or Les Stroud on TV!) will know that you can boil water in plastic PVC pop bottles. The same technique can be used with aluminum foil. It takes practice and patience to find the correct distance from the fire, but it works.

        You can make a field expedient funnel out of foil. Back in 1989, I was conducting a one-week survival FTX in the Grand Canyon. Often, when I would find water seeps in desert canyon walls, the water would come out in drips and drops: one every 30 seconds or a minute or so via multiple locations. A foil funnel allowed me to more easily capture that water into my canteen. Often, I was able to leave the canteen to fill for a few hours while I completed other tasks.

        Aluminum foil can also be used to make an emergency water purifier using sand and charcoal. Basically, triple layer the foil, and then wrap it like a large cigarette around layers of fine sand and ground charcoal. Use it with a funnel to purify water. I’ve used this technique with success on numerous occasions.

        If you have a lot of foil, you can use it as a fire reflector, and increase the amount of heat into your sleeping area by 5-10 degrees or so, depending on wind conditions. I’ve used it as a liner to plug leaks in water containers , to plug holes (or at least redirect water) in a leaky shelter, etc.

        It can be used as a field expedient signaling device. Ideally, it will be used in conjunction with a flat rock (such as slate) or split log that has been whittled to a very flat surface.

        I’ve also made field expedient fishing lures out of heavy duty foil. It can be used both to hold a bit of sand as a weight, and to make some shiny surfaces to imitate a wounded minnow. Back in 1985, I was in the Florida Everglades on a 4-day survival FTX. I was fishing using a homemade fishing pole (a 7-8 foot Cypress tree), monofilament line, and fishhooks. I caught minnows using my mosquito net. I had no lead weights, however, and so my bait would not sink very quickly. Tiny (2-4 inch) Brim / Sunfish were darting out of cover very aggressively and eating my minnow bait on the surface before it could sink down to where the big fish were. I tried to tie rocks to the line but (obviously) that did not hold. I finally solved this problem with aluminum foil and sand / small rocks. I ended up catching a 6-7 pound largemouth bass using this set-up. Since then, I’ve used aluminum foil to catch trout in mountain lakes, etc. Walleye will hit aluminum foil as well.

  7. Survive what? What’s the operating theater? City, desert, forest? What’s the emergency? Flood, fire, blizzard, tornado? What’s the threat? Looters, ninjas, invading martians? And 24 hours? In most conditions you can survive 24 hours with little to no preparations besides the clothes on your back, assuming you’re already dressed for the prevailing weather and can stay reasonably sheltered and hydrated. And of course we all have a concealed carry pistol, which is plenty for most threats short of all-out war.

    Humanity survived for thousands of years with little more than pointy sticks and grass thongs. Grab a bottle of water, a couple of Snickers, a jacket, a bandanna or shemagh, and a handgun, and try to ignore the ghostly laughter of your ancestors as you worry about whether you’re going to be able to make it for a whole day.

    • Hey Jason you forgot the Zombie Apocalypse!
      I agree though. We know we are dealing with Texas, so water and clean water is critical. $200 is not much, but ponchos, plastic tarp, rope, some MRE’s, A machete, Axe, and Multi tool are some of the top things.
      They have the survival water straws, and while a camel back is nice, you can get cheap canteens too which work well.
      We need shelter, some food, and some way to make snares, fish, and gather water. If we are talking 24 hours that shouldn’t be to hard. If we are talking a week or more then we really have a challenge. At that point you have to really manufacture your water and food, you can’t depend on MRE’s and stored items forever.
      Also fire starting tools are critical, and personally a shake flashlight and crank radio are pretty important too.

    • Amen brother! A Bible, a bottle of bourbon, and a .44 ought to be enough to see anyone through any emergency!

  8. $200.00 isn’t much. Hit the dollar stores and thrift stores.
    You can get cheap packs and flashlights there.

    +1 on the poncho, mabye a liner if you can swing it.
    Paracord plus the poncho will make a decent shelter.
    An emergency blanket can really simplify shelter building,
    if you can keep it from tearing.

    You can make a penny stove essentially for free.

    A good fixed blade knife dosen’t have to cost much either.

    A matcheti will go a long way. Get one with a good sheath.

    For firearms, I’m not sure any will get you in under your budget
    and still leave cash for other things.
    Check pawn shops and your local paper for deals.
    You may find a single shot 12gua or .22 for under $100.00

    You can get a water carrier for free, too. Just reuse a gatoraid bottle.
    A little paracord around the neck will make it easier to carry.

    remember to bring food, drinking water, cool aid or something for the water,
    and a good book.

  9. How much is a single occupancy hotel room for one night in South Texas? Domino’s delivers, and there is always the vending machine. You should have enough left to rent a movie and get breakfast!

  10. 1. MAS 49/56 with 10 magazines
    2. MREs
    3. Kabar and machete
    4. Water and purifying gear
    5. Emergency blanket
    6. Matches, flints, and steel wool
    7. The Holy Kuran

        • Well, if anyone is going to use holy texts for “sanitary tissue,” the Christian Bible has several times more pages than the Kuran and the Torah combined. I’m Christian, so yeah … How about we just reserve our holy texts for their intended purposes, and stop trying to poop on other religions? M’kay?

      • She’s a beauty in A Fallout way. I’ve never seen surplus. A local (within 60 miles) shop sells Prvi Partizan FMJs. Once in a while an off-brand of soft-points pops up. Any luck with those on your end?

  11. My brother and I have been working on a similar concept — the “get home bag”, which stores in the car/truck and gives you the wherewithal to get home to take care of family in the event of a catastrophe such as EMP blast, truly massive CME (Coronal Mass Ejection), Obama declaring martial law, and so on. Basic idea is 24 hours of emergency rations (candy bars will do); pistol and ammo; water; flashlight/batteries; knife; clothing appropriate to season, plus some (e.g., extra sweater/shirt in winter, good boots). What we’re considering is basically how to rough it back home from work, on foot if necessary and surrounded by a potential hostile population. That means traveling light if you have to leave the vehicle, and keeping weapons concealed. For weapons, I like the combination of Kel-tec Sub 2000 in 9mm and companion Glock 17, which use the same ammo and mags. Or my Beretta 92fs and Beretta CX4 Storm — same thing, except the Kel-Tec folds up and fits into a small backpack.

    Some of the suggestions above look like they’re geard up for 3-days of serious survival, more like a “bug *out*” scenario. I’m just interested in getting home so I can reload and gun up. Thoughts, anyone?

    • That’s a more concrete scenario to work with. Unfortunately, I take commuter rail to work so would have to pre-position my bag at the office. Certainly not impossible, but including any firearms would be severely illegal. Googlemaps says 12 hours walking time, including traversing the South Bronx, which is already pretty post-apocalyptic.

      • Wow — been there, but never done that (traversed it on foot). Just driving through there in the 80’s scared the sh*t out of me. Interesting — where could one secrete a weapon and small ammo stash in an urban jungle? A U-Store place (rent a small garage-like space)?

    • I started to create a “get home” bag as well for similar scenarios that you listed. For anyone that doesn’t know, there is a non-trivial probability that either natural or man-made events will cause everything that uses electricity to catastrophically fail. That means no transportation (either personal auto or mass transit), no traffic signals, no cell phones, no radios, no electricity, no water, no Internet … in other words life in the early 1800s. Thus if you are away from home, you will have to get back home without motorized transportation.

      I always have waterproof (Gore Tex) pants, parka, and hiking shoes in my car. And I always have my sidearm with a spare magazine on my hip. Now for my bag. It is light for fast travel and contains only essential items:
      – survival knife with thick blade
      – magnesium stick with flint rod (fire starter)
      – water purifier
      – water container
      – high calorie food source (energy bars)
      – paracord
      – 100 rounds additional ammo
      – tiny (low intensity) LED flashlight (runs for 40+ hours)
      – spare AAA battery for LED flashlight
      – mosquito repellant
      – basic bandages and alcohol wipes
      – metal can to heat water
      – $100 cash in small bills
      That’s about it. Ideally I would have my Kel-Tec SUB-2000 as well. The key is fast and light.

        • You are on top of things! I like the idea of keeping things small and light enough that if I had to hike 5, 10, 20 miles I could do it. I’m 60 years old, and no longer in condition to carry a 30-50 lb. pack for that distance. If I had to, I could walk it, but not with a pack that weighed over 10 pounds or so. My main interest is in traveling fast, light and well-armed to punch through to my loved ones, not fighting/surviving for 3 days.

    • I have called my a “Go to Bag”.

      Walther .380 pistol
      spare magazine
      two boxes of shells
      2 liters of water
      AM/FM/weather, radio/flashlight with a hand crank and solar cell
      4 protein bars
      pocket knife
      spare set of glasses
      toilet paper
      water filter straw
      pair of gloves
      regular LED flashlight
      fire starter stuff
      light duty first aid kit
      couple of large garbage bags
      boonie hat
      space blanket
      This sits in my truck covered by a hoodie and a barncoat.

      This all fits into a Tactical Messenger Bag from $30. It is not a 3 day bag, its job is to get me to my home.

      • I would suggest a NanoVault at the very least for the pistol if it’s sitting in your car all day at work; however your list looks good.

    • This is also my idea. Bug out? Bug out to where? This is my “go to bag”.
      Its only to go to home. At that point I hole up there. I have H2O, electricity
      and food. The maximum distance i have to go is 25 miles
      Walther P380
      2 Magazines
      100 rounds of ammo
      back up Ruger LCP
      2 mags
      spare glasses
      boonie hat
      2 liters H2O
      filter straw
      duct tape
      paracord 20 ft
      AM/FM/Weather band radio with crank and a solar cell also LED light
      LED flashlight and spare batteries
      4 protein bars
      pocket knife with 2 blades
      space blanket
      3 large garbage bags
      fire starter stuff
      toilet paper
      basic first aid kit
      pair of gloves and a red rag
      50 dollars in ones.
      All wrapped up in a Multi-Functional Tactical Messenger Bag from $30
      sits in my truck covered with a hoodie and a barn coat.

  12. This will be interesting….I wonder how many people who prep actually go and do a practice prep and time themselves and really evaluate their results. Including some of the people responding who may have an 1hr long commute to work like I have — 40miles one way….have you ever had anyone drop you off at work at night in your work clothes without a car and then tried to make your way back home in 24hrs?

    That said, given the wild fires, the storms last year that hit the north east, tornado’s, hurricans, earthquacks, etc that we have had over the last few years, I hope everyone has at least a plan for emergency natural disaster and to be without food/water/electric for at least two weeks.

    • @pascal,

      Aside from HATING to commute, these are the top reasons to work close to home.

      I went from a fifty+ mile one way commute everyday for years to swearing that I would never again take a job that was NOT in the city I choose to live in.

      Either get a job closer to your home or move closer to your place of work. Problem solved.

  13. Ok there needs to be more details on this. I mean what is the challenge, to live out of your B.O.B. for 24,48 or 72, or are you going to go to a state park walk in with you pack and walk out in three days after traveling a significant course. Does the $200 cover the bag, and weapons, or is it $200 and buy everything from scratch?

    Lets put this whole thing in perspective. Through out the entire summer Boy Scouts will be doing survival training in the TX heat with little more than a pocket knife, canteen, band-aids matches and some fishing line for 3 days. I did it when I was 15, and my whole kit cost less than $20. Camping in South TX isn’t a big deal as long as you hydrate.

    For $200 you could buy food and water for 3 days along with some matches and a small cook set and be fine 3 days. If you want to get fancy throw in a sleeping pad, a couple of tarps and a pillow and you would be set. It’s all about what you are trying to achieve, survive for three days, survive for 3 days in luxury, or survive for 3 and the tools to provide you with more food. But remember, whatever goal you have set, there is a Boy Scout troop doing more with less and laughing at you because they are half your age.

  14. Buds Gun Shop has a ready-made kit including 28 servings of Lunch/Dinner and 12 of breakfast for $259. Don’t know if RF will let you get away with a bit more cash, but if you drop the food, the total cost of the pack comes close to $200 probably. I picked up a couple of these. Granted, some of the stuff included is fairly low end cheapie things, it is a good base upon which to build and I would certainly feel comfortable relying on it for 24-72 hours.

  15. Water, shelter, fire, food, some optional extras

    For $200 – for most urban/suburban types- what you should carry in your car-
    1. cheap backpack with 2 1 gal water jugs from safeway
    2. poncho, or heavy duty trash bags (2 per person),
    poncho liner, w wool sweatshirt, socks, and cap (if its cold)
    3. water proof matches and bic lighter (one is none, two is one) with a candle wrapped in a 2×2 square of tinfoil (makes a nice lantern/car warmer)
    4. protein bars, snickers bars. Ibuprofen. Bandana.
    5. A good pair of running shoes you have already broken in.
    head lamp like you can buy at Home Depot for $15, w/ spare batteries
    Buck folder knife or similar.

    Most important- stop making lists and get out and train-
    If you haven’t slept out overnight wrapped in a poncho, or started a fire from scratch, do that now in your backyard or local park.
    if you haven’t scouted and mapped out the route home on side surface streets, do that now and start walking it in stages, and pick out rest spots, then do the whole thing one night. Commit to doing this in the next two weeks.

    The one single defining characteristic of a survivor is mindset- the determination to never, ever, give up. And being prepared, as above, will go a long way to having that confidence you can make it.

    Therefore, what you carry between your ears, not on your back, is what matters.

    Things will be ten times harder with everyone stranded in their car when the earthquake, emp, storm, urban riot, whatever it is that prevents you from driving home, happens, and its Murphys Law it will happen when you least expect it-
    so you need to be IN SHAPE and ready to do this, having practiced, on side surface streets, at night if its more than a one-day walk, which its likely to be if you have to evade those wishing to take your stuff.

  16. I don’t have a bail out bag. I do have a Flintstones lunchbox with a can of tuna fish, a plastic spork and a small bottle of Grey Goose.

  17. Don’t forget a copy of the SAS Survival Handbook or something similar, because even if you’ve taken a few survival courses or have BSA or military history, there will still be some things you won’t know or not remember certainly enough. At the least print off a small recognition guide for local edible or dangerous plants, animals, and local-specific first aid, it will cost you almost nothing, weigh almost nothing, and help you prepare.

    • Yeah even to this day I forget the recipe for cockroaches.
      It is good to have, also if you are in a specific are anything on venomous animals in your area is always good to have info on.

  18. Extra pair of sweatpants and a .45 auto… My urban survival kit.

    I figure the latter can get me anything else I might need.

  19. Currently, I do not have a bailout bag, bugout bag, or any sort of kit put together if the need to relocated in a hurry is realized. In a year or two, I probably will; but I don’t right now. Why not? Well, for one thing, it is expensive. And for another, I’ve got a young kid who still does not eat much solid food. She’s not ready to “rough it” (although I’m sure we could make it work if we had to. I have a survive-in-place kit good for 4 adults for 7 days, much of which I could pack up and carry if the need arose; but I do not have a bugout bag ready to go.

    My emergency plan would be to survive in place in the event of a natural disaster (unless that disaster resulted in the burning of my house) or civil unrest. We’ve got a pretty good group of folks living in the houses surrounding us, most of whom are armed and willing to help one another. (We’ve got various trades and backgrounds, and have cared for each other’s homes and children in the past.) My wife is also a “super-couponer,” so we’ve got a lot of supplies at home stockpiled just because she buys large quantities when the deals are right. We could survive in place for at least a month as a family with without heat, running water, or electricity; which isn’t to say I’m delusional enough to think it would be easy or comfortable.

    I could survive a long time on my own with very few supplies, and I might even be able to drag my wife along successfully for that time. But I’ve got two small children; so surviving in place give them a better chance unless civil unrest gets really bad, or the neighbors start high-stepping their way elsewhere. And even then, I might determine that surviving in place (and raiding the neighbors’ houses) might be the best course of action.

    $200 (Ironic right?)
    EDC Pistol (HK P30)
    Two P30 mags
    Fixed Blade Knife (Kingdom Armory Grailing, I would kill to get my hands on a second one but the maker has dropped off the face of the Earth)
    215 Gear Riggers Belt

    Eberlestock Gunslinger Pack
    Lightweight Mayflower Chest Rig (soon to be replaced with HSGI)
    Four 30rd PMAGS with M855 Ball (Carried on chest rig)
    Surefire 6PX Defender (Carried on chest rig)
    Surefire Spare battery carrier
    Safariland ALS holster on drop flex rig with Benchmade Nimravus attached
    Primary Weapons Systems MK114 with fixed iron sights and CSAT aperture, X300, VTAC Sling, 60 round surefire magazine with m855 ball
    Lensatic Compass
    Maps of the local area when available
    North American Rescue TCCC Kit
    RMJ Loggerhead Tomahawk
    Ranger Knives RBS 7
    Small Steiner binos
    2 Camelbak bladders integrated
    Small survival kit (hooks, line, fire starter, iodine tablets, etc)
    Poncho (doubles as shelter when needed)
    3 MREs with the extra BS removed
    3 pairs of smartwool socks
    3 undershirts
    3 pairs of compression shorts
    One pair of hiking shoes
    Snugpak jungle sleeping bag
    Poncho liner (doubles as ground cloth)
    Thermal Underwear (wool)
    TAD Ranger Hoodie
    Mountain Hardweare Pull-over jacket
    Goretex rain jacket
    Wool watch cap
    One BDU top
    One BDU bottom

  21. Spare mags, spare knife, woobie, spare pipe and an ounce of Yukon Gold. Y’all are overthinking this:P

  22. 1 Backpack
    3 Lifestraws
    1 Survival Knife
    1 Shake light
    1 Tube tent
    3 N95 masks
    1 pocket stove w/fuel
    1 Duct Tape
    1 Emergency Radio
    20 hand wipes
    1 P-38 Mil Type Can opener
    1 100 feet para-cord/550.0 lb
    1 Magnesium fire starter
    3 ponchos
    3 thermal heat blankets
    2 glow sticks
    1 first-aid kit
    1 aniti diareah
    1 mess kit pots/pans
    3 nylagene bottles
    1 commando axe

  23. Items marked EDC are always with me.

    I’m thinking along these lines:

    6 bottles of water
    1 folding knife (EDC) and a stone (or just a Leatherman)
    Handgun, holster, spare magazine, magazine holder (EDC)
    AR-15/AK/M1A/FAL and six to ten magazines
    Tactical bacon
    Clothing (long pants, socks, BDU style shirt, but non-camo)
    Boots (likely already worn)
    Coleman 90 lumen light (7-9 hour run time) with three spare AAA batteries (EDC)
    Two loaded handgun magazines in the pack
    Small tube of suntan lotion
    Small tube of bug repellent

      • Also: Rifle has a variable optic on it. I will use this over the binoculars.

        If I have to carry the rifle, then it’s because the situation warrants it. Therefore, I can look through the optic. Yes, it may be pointing at someone who doesn’t deserve it, but the situation is such that all humans are now temporarily “the enemy”.

  24. ….you guys have a lot for a 24hr bug out. Assuming that I don’t have to buy a backpack, the normal contents of my pockets. the blanket I keep in the car, and my pistol,…

    – Glock plus 2 mags
    – Pocket Contents – Pocket knife, Cell Phone, about $2 in change, Lighter
    – Small Fleece Blanket that my mom gave me 🙂

    Money to spend
    $40 on 9mm ammo
    $10 on Beef Jerky
    $150 broken up into 5s, 10s, and 20s.

    But I’d likely do better for 24hrs with just the pistol and the cash. $200 can take you a long way for 1 day.

    This should be a 72hr Wilderness Challenge.

  25. You know, we may be missing something here.
    The big snag with this project is the budget, as it relates to the ‘fight’
    of the ‘fight and survive’ requirement.

    You just cannot reliably purchase a firearm and the other
    reccomended survival tools on such a small budget.

    So, the solution is simple, but non intuitive for a firearm blog:
    Don’t purchase a firearm.

    For $10.00 or so, you can get a slingshot.
    With practice, you can do some damage with one, and ammo may be free.
    You may be able to use wire to set up an arrow rest, and fire arrows instead
    of rocks.

    A good fixed blade knife is also a good weapon,
    and a tool that you will have with you anyway.

    A ‘tool’ such as a matcheti, entrenching tool, or axe/hatchet
    would become your sidearm, or go caveman and lash a rock to a stick.

    If you wish more, get a dollar store chefs knife, look for one with
    an acute point, and a handle composed of scales. Remove the handle scales.
    With a couple of zip ties, or screws, you now have the makings for a spear,
    one of mans oldest weapons,
    with a large enough knife, one might
    have a primative glave,or you could just sharpen and fire harden
    a stick.

    There you go, completly armed, mabye for less than $20.00.

    And constructing these weapons, and practicing with them,
    will give you something to do while you wait out the 24 hours
    of the challenge.

  26. I do a lot of business travel all around Washington State, and my survival bag almost never leaves my car trunk. It has to deal with almost any kind of weather situation, from semi-desert to blizzard to rainforest, at any time of the year. Mine is fairly heavy since it’s geared toward winter survival in case I put my car in a snowbank somewhere outside Yakima.

    It’s got bare-minimum food and water for two days in nearly any conditions; the only survival clothing not included is winter boots, because if it’s winter I’ll already be wearing them. I also don’t include weapons in this bag because they can’t even be brought into the parking lot at some of the facilities I travel to.

    -Medium ALICE backpack. $30.
    -First Aid kit: bandages, Advil, Quick-Clot and antibiotic ointment. $25
    -Clothing: rain suit, fleece jacket, wool socks, hat, gloves. $60
    -Shelter: durable space blanket, gore-tex surplus bivvy sack, fleece sleeping bag liner. $65
    -Fire/cooking: stove and 30 fuel tabs, flint/magnesium starter, tinder, waterproof matches, Sierra cup, spoon. $40.
    -Food: 4 cans pork ‘n beans, 4 packs ramen, salt packets. $5.
    -Water: 6 x 750ml bottled water, filter straw. $18.
    -Assorted knives, compass, tools. $15.

    Hmm…my 2-night bag is a bit over Nick’s suggested MSRP, at $260. Oh well.

  27. My WTSHTF kit: For myself and wife.
    M1 Garand w/ 200 rounds 30.06 FMJ ball ammo
    Colt .45 Model 80 w/ 200 roundsFMJ ball ammo.
    Mossberg 500 12 gauge w/ 100 rounds ammo of various loads.
    S&W Model 66 w/100 rounds .357 JHP
    Several survival and folding knives, multi-tools, machetes.
    2 weeks food
    First Aid/Med kit. I’m a nurse and former Army combat medic.
    Various holsters, bandoliers, packs, canteens, sleeping bags, camping gear, E-tools, toilet paper and survival equipment as needed at the time.

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