This article is Skilled Survival’s Ultimate 104 Item Bug Out Bag Checklist.
A free bug out bag checklist that not only tells you what to add to your pack but why.
Because you have to justify everything you add to your bug out bag.
Every ounce matters.
Decisions must be made because you cannot take everything.
This checklist helps to make those hard decisions so you end up with the perfect bug out bag for you.
A bug out bag you can be proud of.
Before we jump in, make sure to bookmark this page right now so you can come back to this free bug out bag checklist to build out your bag over time.
Go ahead, before you forget.
Want a Downloadable and Printable Version Of This Bug Out Bag Checklist? Click Here To Get Your FREE Copy Of It.
A QUALITY BUG OUT BAG
Before you begin filling your bug out bag with all your survival gear and supplies, you need a high-quality bug out bag.
Starting your bug out bag build with a crappy pack is a terrible idea so make certain you get one with the following qualities:
- Made with thick, tough fabrics
- Includes a MOLLE system
- Has a chest strap and/or padded hip support straps
- Water-resistant or includes a shell
- High-quality zippers and clips
- Includes a lot of pockets and compartments
And if you’re not familiar with MOLLE; watch this short video:
1. Bug Out Bag
The EVATAC™ Combat Bag is a badass bug out bag and an ideal pack for anyone serious about putting together a legit bug out bag.
It’s the bug out bag that I personally use by the way.
It’s constructed of 600D Polyester which makes it tough as nails.
The Combat Bag’s zipper and clips are heavy-duty and long-lasting.
The padded shoulder straps make carrying this bug out bag very comfortable and there is a chest strap that can sinch this bag down tight to keep it in place if/when you need to run.
There are a total of 10 compartments that can help keep you and your survival gear organized. By the way, these compartments are waterproofed to keep your gear dry.
There’s even a padded compartment that can fit a laptop or other sensitive gear.
The best news is that, at the time of writing, this bug out bag sells for a fraction of the price of similar bags.
Interested? Check out my detailed review of The Combat Bag by EVATAC:
Once you’ve got your bug out bag, it’s time to start building your bag with survival gear.
Please Note: This bug out bag checklist is intended to provide all the possible items you may want to add to your bag.
However, if you added everything suggested from this bug out bag checklist into your bag it’s going to get way too heavy.
You should pick and choose the gear and supplies that make the most sense to meet your needs.
Want a Downloadable and Printable Version Of This Bug Out Bag Checklist? Click Here To Get Your FREE Copy Of It.
WATER AND HYDRATION TOOLS
For SHTF, you’re going to want at least three separate ways to your water sources. Drinking contaminated water can make you severely sick and can even kill you.
Why not just carry all the water you’ll need?
Not an option, water is extremely heavy so you’ll have to find it along the way.
That’s why you’ll need key purification tools to filter and treat the water you find.
2. Stainless Steel Water Bottle
Your choice of water bottle matters.
It’s important to get a water bottle made out of stainless steel and not plastic.
You can’t boil water in a plastic bottle or an insulated one, and boiling is the simplest way to purify the water to ensure it’s safe to consume.
Double-wall (or even triple-walled) water bottles make it darn near impossible to boiling water over a fire. But when bugging out, you’ll want boiling water as a “backup” purification plan.
Being able to purify your water from a lake or stream is way more important than keeping the water cool for longer!
That means you ONLY want single-walled stainless steel for your bug out water bottle.
Fill your single wall stainless steel bottle today with safe, clean water and stash it in your bug out bag.
That way you can start your bug out with a full bottle of clean water and then refill and boil/filter/purify as needed on your route.
3. Water Purification Tablets
An alternative method to purify water from rivers and streams when boiling is too time-consuming is to carry some water purification tablets.
These tablets treat water faster than boiling, and they allow you to purify on the go and keep moving. Plus they are extremely lightweight so that you won’t pay much of a weight penalty.
4. Portable Water Filter
A good water filter will remove all the particulates from your water such as dirt or soot, but a great one will also remove the most harmful bacterias as well.
So you should pack a small portable water filter to clean your water and purify it too.
Sawyer Mini Water Filter
I highly recommend you get a couple of sawyer mini water filters.
Not only is it small to pack and lightweight, but it can also filter 100,000 gallons of water!
This little water filter is ideal for both travel and a worst-case get home survival scenario.
What makes the Sawyer Mini so powerful is its inline design capabilities.
Use it like a straw or an inline filter to remove 99.999% of harmful bacteria.
Here’s my full video review of the incredible Sawyer Mini.
5. Expedition Jerrycan Filtration System
This is not a small filter and it won’t fit inside your bug out bag. However, with your MOLLE system, you can hang it on the outside of your bag.
The LifeSaver Expedition Jerrycan is ideal for a family bug out since the system can supply enough clean water for a family of 4 for nearly a year.
Clip it to the outside of your bug out bag empty and use it once your family arrives at your final bug-out location.
Want a Downloadable and Printable Version Of This Bug Out Bag Checklist? Click Here To Get Your FREE Copy Of It.
FOOD SUPPLIES AND TOOLS
You need to pack some calories.
A few essential food sources stashed in your bug out bag to keep you healthy and maintain your stamina. For can get heavy so you’ll want to focus on light, easy to prepare foods.
But you should also try to take advantage of what the land can provide.
So make sure to pack a few survival tools to help hunt or gather additional foods on your bug out route.
6. Calorie Dense Food Bars
These ER Emergency Food Ration Bars pack 2400 calories per bar, which is exactly what you need.
These food bars will provide your primary energy needs on your journey since they are easy to consume on the go, and you can pack quite a lot of them without adding much weight.
Plus, they have a decently long shelf life (5+ years).
7. Freeze Dried Meals
Freeze dried foods are a hot meal in a pouch making them another a light food source you can add to your bug out bag.
They take a few minutes to prepare so wait until you find a safe spot to rest.
Just add the pouch contents to boiling water, stir, and eat up.
8. Military Meals (MRE – Meal, Ready to Eat)
If MRE meals are good enough for soldiers, then they are good enough for me.
I prefer to pack my bug out bag with freeze-dried food over MRE’s but if all I had was MRE’s, I’d be totally fine with that.
But some people think they are horrible and theirs a long-standing and ongoing debate about MRE’s for survival.
Here’s an excellent discussion on this hotly debated topic if you want to dig deeper.
If you do want to go with MRE’s then here’s a deal on a case of 12 of them you should check out.
9. Eating Utensils – Sprok
Get this awesome 1.5 oz multi-tool spork; it’s both a spoon and a fork – plus:
- 10 mm hex wrench
- 8 mm hex wrench
- 6 mm hex wrench
- Bottle opener
- Flat-head screwdriver
Multi-tools are always best in survival.
Now as a side note, you won’t need a small knife because you can use your survival knife instead (a separate list item later).
10. Small Collapsible Cup/Bowl
In our homes we use plates, but they are heavy and take up a lot of space.
So instead get one of these stainless steel cups, that can double as a bowl, and they work great.
We recommend this one because it’s stainless steel which means you can boil water in it when you need to.
11. Braided Fishing Line
Fishing while bugging out is not always possible, however, you definitely won’t catch any without some fishing line.
Get some braided fishing line since it’s highly durable and can take more abuse than the regular fishing line.
You won’t need much so you can get the small spool, but you’ll have to decide what lbs test line will work best for your needs.
The bottom line is that having some fishing line is a great survival tool to have in your bag.
It’s light, durable, and can help you catch fish or help with other survival needs.
12. Fishing Pole (small, collapsing, or pocket)
Recently some ingenious ultra-small fishing poles have been invented like this small fishing rod from Emmrod.
This rod works fairly well (especially for how small it is), and it easily fits into any size bug out bag.
Make certain to take one with you on your next fishing trip so you can get experience using it.
13. Yo-Yo Fishing Reels
I recently stumbled on these ingenious little devices.
You can set several of these out, leave them, and then come back to check on them later. So you won’t have to waste precious time actively fishing.
You’ll have better things to do mid bug out than casting and reeling for hours with no guarantee of success.
Better to set your fishing yo-yo’s up and come back later.
If you catch a fish or 2, you’re ahead of the game, but if you don’t, you didn’t waste a ton of time.
14. Hook, Swivel, Sinker Set
We’ve already covered fishing lines and poles but without hooks, swivels, and sinkers you’re going to have a hard time catching anything.
Keep it light, since you only need a small number of each. This little case includes 75 pieces which you should remove about 2/3 of them before packing, to save weight.
15. Portable Light Weight Stove
This piece of survival gear is a personal choice of whether to include it in your bug out bag or not.
You CAN definitely survive without it and save the weight. Your call.
With that said, you can use it to boil water faster than over an open fire. It also makes your freeze-dried pouch food preparation both easier and faster.
Another consideration is stealth. A fire can give away your position to others, especially at night. However, with this small stove, you’ll be able to cook your food without nearly as much exposure.
Note: Not only is the Solo Stove Lite only 9 oz but it DOESN’T require additional stove fuel! It works with just a few sticks and twigs – this helps to save pack weight!
Watch this video to see exactly how this stove works:
16. Additional Stove Fuel (if necessary)
Depending on the type of stove you choose, you may need to purchase a couple of fuel containers to go with it.
Grab a couple and try to use them as sparingly as possible. Eventually, they will run out, but if they get you to your bug out location before they do, then you win.
17. Snare Wires
Setting up snares overnight might bag you a couple of squirrels or rabbits on the go. Snare wires are a lighter option than traps, so they are the right choice for your bug out bag.
Be forewarned, though, they won’t be of much use unless you know what you’re doing. However, if you do learn the art of snaring, then they can be incredibly useful when bugging out.
18. Survival Slingshot
You can learn how to use a slingshot quickly with some dedicated practice.
Like most survival skills, it will take some practice, but this lightweight hunting slingshot is a decent option for sourcing some protein.
19. Daily Multivitamin Supplement
Stash some daily vitamins to help maintain your overall health.
Your diet will become severely limited in the wilderness, so taking a daily vitamin supplement will help keep your mind and body strong.
CLOTHING AND WARMTH SUPPLIES
Rule #1. Only carry as much clothing as you need for survival.
Rule #2. Don’t forget rule number 1.
Spare clothes will take too much precious pack space and weigh more than you think. So try to limited additional clothes to just a couple of the main undergarments.
Plan on wearing the same set of durable clothes (like a pair of tactical pants) every day and then just change out your undergarments to maintain reasonable hygiene.
Remember, if you’re bugging out, it’s because a survival event forced you to leave, so multiple changes of clothes are not a luxury you can afford.
20. Fresh Socks
While I just suggested you compromise on your main cloth items (shirts and pants), I don’t recommend the same for your socks. Your feet are just too important during a bug out. You can’t afford to get trench foot or severe blisters.
So rotate a fresh pair of socks daily.
The socks I’ve trusted with my feet on the trail for years are smart wools. They are thick, warm, and comfortable when you’re walking long distances.
Pack one pair and wear one pair. Wash, dry, and rotate daily.
21. Quick-Drying Undergarments
Pack the quick-dry variety of undergarments so you can wash and then tie them to the outside of your pack to dry. They are designed to dry quickly, so you only need one spare set of underwear and an undershirt in your pack. Rotate daily.
22. Sewing Kit
Since you’re only taking one main set of clothes (the set you’ll wear every day), you’ll need a small light traveling sewing kit.
A sewing kit allows you to mend your clothes should they rip or tear on the trail.
23. Safety Pins
Safety pins are designed specifically to pin clothes together. So in a pinch, having a few stashed to hold a rip together until you can stitch a more permanent patch makes sense.
These safety pins are heavy duty so they will work better in tough environments than regular ones.
24. Survival Gloves
I pack a set of Mechanix gloves because they’re designed for people who work with their hands.
With these gloves on your hands, you’ll have enough dexterity to use your survival knife or a firearm without taking them off.
25. Stocking Cap
In cold weather, plan to retain as much body heat as possible. And while it’s a myth that we lose the majority of our body heat through our heads, it’s still wise to keep your dome covered in the cold.
26. Body Warmers
Keep a few body warming packets stashed in your bug out bag just in case.
Then save them for serious emergencies only, like just before the threat of frostbite.
You can’t afford to lose your fingers or toes to frostbite in survival. That situation would be game over.
27. Rain Poncho with Hood
It’s a miserable experience, and it’s very dangerous in the cold.
This Princeton study shows that “Generally conductive heat loss accounts for only about 2% total loss. However, with wet clothes, the loss is increased 5x.”
So pack a poncho. Ponchos are thin, light, and take up limited space. Get one with a hood to keep the rain off your head.
Also, get one that’s durable and won’t tear easily in the rugged wilderness. It may cost a few dollars more, but it’s worth it. Because if you’re cold and wet for long, hypothermia is coming.
SHELTER AND BEDDING OPTIONS
Your choice of bug out survival shelter comes down to personal preference. Personally, I don’t pack a full-fledged tent. The tent poles and anchors are too heavy.
Instead, I use my survival skills and knowledge to make a basic survival shelter.
28. Tarp Shelter
With a durable waterproof survival tarp and key survival skills, you can create a space that is as good as a traditional tent.
- Keep the rain off you
- Break the wind,
- Give you a “safe” space to sleep at night
So why carry all the extra weight of tent poles? Invest in an Aqua Quest tarp, they’re made for the rugged outdoors and they have tons of extra tie-down grommets.
Jason will show you how to build a tarp shelter in under 5 minutes below:
29. Survival Hammock
A quality hammock is another survival solution for sleeping.
Combine a good sleeping bag with a hammock and you’ll be warm, off the ground, and dry.
All you need is a couple of trees and some paracord to tie off.
30. TACT Bivvy
This TACT Bivvy is an emergency survival blanket that fits in your hand.
It’s about as small and lightweight as you can get but will keep you warm and dry even in the worst weather conditions.
I wish everyone would at least put one of these in your vehicle’s glove box, these TACT Bivvy’s save lives.
Get one and add it to your pack.
31. Sleeping Pad
While a sleeping pad provides some comfort, its primary survival function is to insulation you from the cold hard ground.
You need something between you and the ground because laying directly on the ground sucks the warmth and energy out of your body.
You can forgo a pad and get insulation by building a layer with wilderness debris (i.e. leaves, pine straw, etc.) but only if you know what you’re doing.
32. Zip Ties
If you stop to think about it, zip ties are an amazing invention. They are as tough as hell, light, and allow you to create tight connections. Many police departments use a thick set of zip ties instead of handcuffs.
They have a large variety of additional survival uses too.
As far as shelters go, use them to tie branches together to create simple survival shelters.
33. Paracord Survival Kit
Paracord has so many survival uses that I could have added “paracord” to nearly every bug out checklist category.
In the case of shelters, it can be used to tied branches together or to attach your tarp to trees. It can also anchor your hammock to trees.
That’s why you should have some paracord with you at all times. One of the easiest ways to do this is to attach one of these Paracord Grenades to your bug out bag.
Plus, for a limited time you can pick on up for Free (just pay s&h). Click here now to see if this deal is still available.
FIRE STARTING TOOLS AND GEAR
You need 3 independent ways to start a fire.
Fire is your lifeblood in a survival emergency. You need it to purify water, cook food, for nighttime warmth, safety, and it’s a huge morale booster.
Once you have your 3 critical fire-starting tools, practice so you know how to use them.
And if you really want up your survival game, learn how to start a fire with sticks. It takes serious survival skills to start a fire with sticks in high wind or wet conditions.
34. Waterproof Survival Matches
These waterproof matches are the real deal. Regular matches are not good enough.
If regular matches get wet, forget about having a fire.
These matches are “stormproof” and can relight after being dunked in water.
35. Ferro Rod Fire Starter
A Ferro Rod works great if you know what you’re doing.
It helps to start with a very fine, very dry tinder bundle to get the sparks to ignite.
This robust UCO Ferro Rod is capable of 3,000 strikes is fantastic and produces 5,400°F (3,000°C) sparks. So it works even when wet.
Because of its insane utility and tiny size, this is one survival tool that should be in EVERYONE’S bug out bag.
Note: Using a Ferro Rod takes practice and a very fine/dry tinder bundle.
36. Windproof – Waterproof Electrical Lighter
Can your cheap BIC lighter work after dropping it in a river? Nope.
Will a cheap BIC lighter’s flame stay lite in 80 MPH winds? Not a chance.
So I recommend spending a couple of extra dollars on a new badass fire-starting technology: Tesla’s Rechargeable Coil Lighter.
This lighter doesn’t use fuel, so you’ll never run out. It uses electricity to create an electric arc that is both windproof and waterproof.
As an experienced survivalist, you can normally find natural tinder in the wilderness. However, it’s always smart to prepare for the worst, so pre-pack some sort of fire-starting tabs or powder as well.
Cotton balls dipped in petroleum jelly will work.
Add a dab of vaseline to some cotton balls and it will help it ignite quickly and easily.
39. Fresnel Lens
A Fresnel Lens will work if you run out of butane or matches.
Super lightweight solar fire starter? Sign me up!
40. Small Waterproof Storage Container
You should stash all of your fire-starting tools into an O-ring sealed waterproof container. This container will keep your fire starting tools dry in a downpour or if you fall in a river with your pack.
FIRST AID AND MEDICAL SUPPLIES
When in the wilderness, exposed to the elements, there’s an increased chance of illness or injury.
Now before we go through the following individual medical supplies – I highly recommend you consider picking up a MyMedic Advanced Solo Kit instead.
It’s the best compact medical kit I’ve ever come across. It’s perfectly designed for your bug out bag.
It includes exactly what you need – no more no less. But this kit IS NOT just a bunch of cheap medical supplies stuffed in a pouch.
The pouch high quality and is MOLLE compatible. The supplies are all excellent.
So you can easily finish your bug out bag medical supplies with one simple purchase – much faster and easier than buying each item individually then trying to make it all fit in a separate pouch!
Note: Make sure you choose a pouch color that blends in well with your bag and environment. For bugging out you probably want to avoid the bright red pouch option.
P.s. – There’s also The MyFAK (First Aid Kit) option as well – which includes even more lifesaving medical gear and supplies – but it also weighs a few more pounds (1 lb vs 2.8 lbs).
41. Personal Medications
If you have prescribed medications, then stock up and add them to your bug out bag.
42. Wound Gauze Roll
Gauze is the ideal dressing for bad cuts or severe burns. It’s light and takes up very little pack space.
43. Surgical Tape
This stuff is made to keep gauze, pads, and bandages in place even when you’re on the move.
44. Band-Aids / Mole Skin Pads
Band-aids are the best solution for small cuts and lacerations. They help keep open wounds clean and protected, which helps prevent an infection from developing.
You should also add a few moleskin pads for blisters. Band-aids won’t stay in place on your feet while walking, but moleskin will.
46. Pain Killers
For minor aches and pains, these can help keep you going. For serious injuries, pain killers will take the edge off until you can get more help.
47. Blood Clotting Sponge
Nasty, deep wounds won’t clot on their own.
You have to apply intense pressure to the wound site for a long time to get the blood to stop, congeal, and begin the healing process.
These Quick Clot Sponges will help with this life or death effort.
48. Super Glue
I’m aware this is the second time Vaseline made this bug out bag checklist, but it works as both a fire starter and as an ointment. Apply this stuff to your chapped skin or lips to prevent painful cracking.
50. Survival Antibiotics
When SHTF, access to lifesaving antibiotics to cure infections will become severely limited (if available at all). So stock up on a few bird or fish antibiotics and throw them in your bug out bag, just in case.
51. Sterile Alchohol Prep Pads
Clean all wounds early and often with these alcohol wipes. The alcohol will clean the wound, killing infection-causing bacteria.
52. Hydrogen Peroxide
This is the same idea as the alcohol pads, use it to keep wounds clean and bacteria-free.
53. Q-tips Cotton Swabs
Use Q-tips to clean your ears. Allowing excess wax to build up in your ears can lead to infection. And, wax buildup muffles your hearing. And clear hearing is a major advantage in survival.
They are also ideal for applying small amounts of medical salves and liquids.
Lastly, you can tear off the cotton ends and use them as tinder to start a fire.
They are extremely light and useful, so feel free to pack a couple hundred of them.
54. Tweezers and Nail Clippers
55. Insect Repellent
Mosquitos are a nuisance and can transmit diseases so if they are abundant in your region you’ll want to pack a repellent spray with high amounts of DEET.
56. Sun Screen
You should only pack a small bottle of this, so you’ll need to ration it. Save it for the worst days and instead, keep your skin covered up.
A hat, long sleeves, and pants go a long way to preventing sunburn but keep sunscreen handy for the worst days.
PERSONAL HYGIENE ITEMS
This is survival we are talking about, so if you enjoy daily hot showers get ready for an abrupt change.
When on the run, you’ll need basic sanitation, but that’s NOT going to include daily hot showers.
57. Moist Towelettes
Pack a bunch of these shower wipes. They are a good lightweight hygiene solution on the go. It’s no shower but, hey, it’s better than nothing.
Pack several of these small, light toothbrushes because they won’t take up much space. Oral hygiene is important to prevent all sorts of tooth problems.
Dental work will be rare after TEOTWAWKI so taking the extra effort to prevent tooth problems will pay off in the long run.
59. Mini-Toothpaste Tubes
The mini toothbrushes come with a dab of paste built-in. But you’re going to use them more than once. You need a small tube of toothpaste to add to your mini brushes when the built-in stuff runs out.
Ration it to the extreme. You don’t know how long it will be before you can restock, but try to use a little each day.
60. Dental Floss
Light, small, and highly useful.
61. Sportsman Soap
While moist towelettes can replace your daily shower, you’ll want some sportsman soap for the occasional river bath.
Again, ration this stuff to the extreme unless you pack a lot of it. But it will get heavy and take up space if you do.
63. Hand Sanitizer
Use a small bottle of hand sanitizer to clean your hands before eating.
Try to avoid ingesting bacteria from your hands after tromping through the wilderness all day.
64. Bandana / Face Shield
You can also use it as a makeshift dust mask.
OR even better, you can go with a cloth face shield like this one by American Gunner.
This cloth face shield provides:
- Ultimate UV Protection
- Protection From Wind & Snow
- Lightweight & Breathable
- Perfect For Hunting, Fishing, Biking & Bugging Out
- Protection From Insects
- One Size Fits All
- Moisture Wicking Material
Choose a color:
CORE SURVIVAL TOOLS
These are traditional survival tools that didn’t fit into our other but out bag checklist categories. However, they are essential to your bug out’s success.
65. High-Quality Compass
If you’re into survival, then you should own a high-quality compass and learn how to use it.
Navigation is too critical. Getting lost is too dangerous.
Know where you are and the best way to get to your final destination. Learn how to use a compass (and keep it with you) and you’ll never get lost again.
GPS devices run on batteries, so you can’t rely on them in a bug out situation.
66. Tough Compact Folding Shovel
If you’ve buried some survival caches along your bug out route, then you’ll want a compact shovel to dig them up.
It also allows you to improve your shelter area by clearing and leveling the ground.
A tactical shovel allows you to complete even more survival tasks such as digging, chopping, sawing, pickaxe, trenching, opening, etc.
67. Survival Knife
Spend some quality time researching good survival knives. Find one that meets your needs best because a good survival knife has so many critical survival uses.
Then once you’ve settled on “the one”, make sure you learn how to use it in the wild with lots of practice.
If you looking for a freaking GREAT deal on a quality survival knife – check out this Evatac Rescue Knife!
Don’t forget to add a small survival knife sharpener to keep your knife sharp. NO serious survivalist would ever allow their high-quality survival knife to become dull and useless.
68. Survival Series Multi-Tool Pliers
A survival multi-tool is another key survival tool to pack.
The biggest difference between what a multi-tool can do, but a survival knife cannot, is the pliers.
These survival pliers allow you to perform many functions that would be impossible with a knife alone.
69. Light-Weight Rugged Solar Charger
From flashlights to GPS units to cell phones, there’s going to be a decent amount of technology in your car emergency kit. All worthless devices without electricity!
So be sure to add a solar charger and battery pack if you depend on any of those items. Make sure to include the cords for each device!
Skilled Survival highly recommends the Anytime Charge Solar Power Bank.
Why? Because it’s one of the most durable, compact, and cost-effective portable solar chargers on the market today. But don’t let its compact size fool you, it’s also got a massive 10,000 mAh battery capacity!
The massive battery storage is enough to charge any of your devices multiple times. Plus, with dual charging outputs, you can power multiple devices at the same time!
Simply plug in your devices via the supplied USB cable (you can use any USB cable) and press the power button. Your device will begin to take power from the Anytime Charge right away.
Recharging the Anytime Solar Bank couldn’t be easier – just leave it in the sun and it will automatically fill the large battery bank back up ANYWHERE.
Plus, it’s splash resistant and comes with an emergency flashlight with a strobe function.
NOTE: At the time this article was published, you could snag some bonus Tactical Flashlights For FREE if when you buy multiple Anytime Solar Chargers. Click here now, to see if this deal is still available!
70. Survival Hatchet
They are helpful to accomplish tasks quickly that using your survival knife alone would take hours.
A good survival hatchet makes batoning branches for firewood a breeze. It makes chopping down trees a whole lot faster too.
Plus, these survival tasks are hard on your survival knife, but a hatchet handles with ease.
If you add a survival hatchet to your bug-out bag, get one of the lightest ones you can find.
71. Small Wire Saw
If you forgo adding a survival hatchet to your bug out bag, you should at least add a wire chainsaw.
This wire saw will cut down small trees to help build shelters IF you know how to use it properly!
Watch the video below to see how to turn a clunky wire saw into an efficient cutting machine – a.k.a Wire Saw Bow.
Illumination is necessary for survival.
You’ll need good light to work under the darkness of night. And if forced to move in the middle of the night you’ll need it to see where you’re going.
I can’t imagine bugging out without illumination devices. Attempting to do so would put you at an extreme disadvantage.
72. Super Bright LED Headlamp
Two words: Hands-Free.
I recommend getting one with lots of modes; as well as rechargeable batteries.
And with the rechargeable batteries, you’ll need a way to recharge them.
That’s where a portable solar charger comes in handy (item #69 in this bug out bag checklist) to keep your LED headlamp batteries charged up.
73. Super Bright LED Tactical Flashlight
While a headlamp is important, you should also carry an LED Tactical Flashlight.
You have more control with a handheld LED flashlight and can shine it in multiple directions without having to turn your head.
I prefer using a Tactical flashlight instead of a headlamp if I’m not using my hands to accomplish a task.
Check out the FireHawk Tactical Flashlight that you can get for free by simply covering the reasonable S&H.
For A Limited Time Only: Get a FREE FireHawk Tactical Flashlight For Visiting Skilled Survival! Just pay s&h. Click Here To Learn More.
74. Glow Sticks
Glow sticks work great to light up an entire area and not just a particular spot, which can be helpful in a campsite.
However, they can give away your position to potential threats so only use these if you know you’re in a secluded area.
Or a solar lantern you can turn on and off is a great illumination option when you’re not in a secure area.
Here are 10 more survival uses for glow sticks.
You need information.
Gathering information and sharing information during a bug out situation is critical for success.
Whether it’s a severe weather forecast or knowing the location of potential threats. The more you know, the more you can plan and adapt on the go.
If you’re in a small bug out coalition, you’ll want to communicate with each other over short distances. Useful if you get separated or are planning an ambush.
75. Hand Crank Radio
You’ll want regular updates on how the “situation” is progressing. This helps to decide your next move.
Providing confidence you’re heading away from danger and not into it.
The big advantage of a hand cranked radio is that you won’t need to worry about batteries and recharging.
Plus, this hand-crank radio has ports so you can use the hand crank function to charge other small electronic devices you’ve brought with you.
Bugging out and then having no way to get intel is like flying blind.
Here’s a video review of a similar hand crank radio from Jason (Skilled Survival’s gear expert):
76. Two-Way Walkie Talkie Radios
Packing a set of walkie-talkies is a smart idea for a small bug out group.
If your team gets separated or split up for strategic reasons, you’ll still be able to keep in touch at short distances.
77. Protected Smart Phone
You should never solely rely on a cellphone or a smartphone for your survival, but if you happen to have one, and it works, it can be a great survival tool.
78. Small Signaling Mirror
Typically, if you’re bugging out, you’re not interested in being rescued. Odds are you’d rather not draw any attention your way.
However, use a small signaling mirror to communicate with your fellow bug out companions at longer distances instead of using walkie-talkies.
If you learn Morse Code, you can use long and short bursts of light to communicate.
79. Notepad and Pencil
Go old school with a pencil and paper. You can leave notes or send mail (if there’s still mail service).
Both are light and small, so you should be able to find room in your bug out bag for them.
80. Multi-Functional Survival Whistle
A loud whistle is another way to communicate with your bug out team over long distances. Again, it’s light and takes up very little space.
SELF DEFENSE TOOLS
In the worst survival conditions, you’re going to be the hunter or be hunted. You need to be prepared to defend yourself and your group from threats.
Threats from wild game and threats from other humans.
81. Survival Firearm
So which firearm is best for bugging out? To be honest, you could write an entire survival book on the subject. It’s a very personal choice with lots of nuances to consider.
For bugging out, you need a firearm that is designed to break down to fit in a pack and can take a ton of abuse. I also prefer a rifle as opposed to a handgun if you plan on taking just a single firearm.
And as far as ammo weight goes, it makes the most sense to go with .22LR.
So with that said, you should consider one of these three .22 takedown rifle options: Three Great Takedown Survival Guns.
Lastly, it’s worth investing in a good gun suppressor for whichever gun you ultimately choose. Nothing good will come of letting everyone in shouting distance know you just fired your gun.
82. Firearm Ammunition
Ideally, you want to carry enough ammo to avoid having to ration. But you have to watch your bug out bag weight and ammo is heavy. That’s why I suggest sticking with .22LR.
For example; 200 rounds of 44 magnums weigh about 9.14 lbs. That may not sound like much but don’t forget about all the other gear you’re putting into your bug out bag already. 10 lbs is a lot.
On the flip side, 200 rounds of 22LR only weigh 1.5 lbs.
That’s why I’m packing 22LR and adding a good takedown rifle to my bug out bag.
You could also cache ammo on your bug out route, and you should, but I can’t imagine trying to lug around 200 rounds of 44 Mags.
Here’s a list of different calibers and their respective weights to help you research this important issue further.
As an alternative to using a firearm for self-defense, you could stash a taser.
Remember there’s no such thing as a fair fight when SHTF. You might not start a fight, but should be prepared to end one.
84. Takedown Survival Bow Or Cross Bow
- Arrows are reusable so you won’t need to pack as many as you would ammunition.
- Bows are silent to shoot, especially in comparison to a firearm.
- Takedown bows fold down and can easily fit in a bug out bag
- Recurve bows don’t have complicated parts, so they are easy to shoot and repair
- Strong enough to take down small and large game
Here’s a good review video on one of the best survival bows (the Samick Sage Takedown Bow) and how they work in general.
85. Pepper Spray
Earlier this year, I read an interesting news article. It was about a man hospitalized after eating one Carolina Reaper.
It said to be the hottest chili pepper known to man – at around 2,000,000 Scoville Heat Units!
This pepper causes intense dry heaves, blinding headaches, and some near-stroke symptoms. But what if the “pepper” in a pepper spray was that powerful?
FOX Labs is measured at 5,300,000 SHU – an astounding 265% hotter than the Carolina Reaper!
It can spray this blinding defense up to 17 to 20 feet. FOX Labs Pepper Spray is used by Police, Law Enforcement, Security, and Military agencies worldwide.
MISC SURVIVAL TOOLS AND SUPPLIES
Finally, these are the random survival tools and supplies that will make your bug out just a little bit easier.
To effectively utilize your bug out bag’s MOLLE system you need a good set of carabineers.
Clip them to your bag’s MOLLE system and to any gear you choose to hang from your pack.
This system helps to add a lot of “extra” gear to the outside of your bug out bag and saves space inside your bag for supplies that cannot be hung.
If you only want to hang gear from your bug out bag, you can get cheap carabineers.
However, if you want to be able to use these for climbing or lifting objects, you’ll need to invest a few more dollars and get ones made for that.
87. Rechargeable Batteries
Add a couple of sets of these rechargeable batteries.
When you pair these up with your portable solar charger (#69 on this checklist) you’ll be able to keep your batteries charged from anywhere which is perfect for a bug out scenario.
88. Cash or Rare Metal Coins
It’s anyone’s guess what currency will be in circulation after SHTF, but it’s always good to have metal for trading, purchasing, or bartering.
89. Playing Cards
A set of survival playing cards can help keep spirits high.
And you might as well get ones with useful survival information on them.
Prepare for extreme sun and snow glare with a pair of tactical sunglasses.
If you’ve ever experienced a case of snow blindness, you know how important a pair of shades can be.
It’s critical to have a durable pair of glare-resistant sunglasses that won’t shatter or scratch when you’re bugging out and these Milspec Tactical Eyewear™ are “field-tested and ready to go out of the box.”
91. Personal Credit Cards
These thin pieces of plastic will most likely end up being worthless, but then again, they might be useful at some point when society recovers.
Credit cards are another small, light object you can add to your bug out bag with no significant downside.
As a side note, we recommend you carry your credit cards in an RFID blocking wallet in good times and bad.
92. Drivers License / Passport
Similar to credit cards, these items may or may not be useful, but might be good to pack, just in case.
Unless you’re trying to completely disappear.
93. Small Roll Of Duct Tape
There is a lot of survival uses for duct tape.
For a list of 25 of these applications check out The Daily Sheeple’s 25 Survival Uses For Duct Tape.
It’s a smart addition to your go bag list.
94. Local Area Topographical Map
To avoid trouble you have to know exactly where you are and where you are heading in the wilderness. So invest in a high-quality waterproof map of your local region.
And learn how to read topo maps while you’re at it!
95. Gas Mask
Without one, you’d be forced to breathe contaminated air and put yourself at greater risk.
I bought the CM-6M mask and several filters for myself.
I prefer its wide viewing angles and durable construction compared to other gas masks I reviewed.
96. Camo Face Paint Sticks
Stay hidden in the wild with these face paint sticks.
The natural color of pale skin sticks out like a sore thumb in the wild.
However, if you’re traveling through civilization, face paint will attract unwanted attention. So only use in environments where it makes sense.
97. Family Photos
Family photos can be useful to help track down separated loved ones.
Having an image to show strangers can help get better information on their whereabouts.
They also can help you remember loved ones who you may have lost.
98. Set Of Broadheads
Broadheads can create basic spears for hunting or self-defense.
They are lightweight, small, and ideal for gigging or spearing.
99. Spare Pair Of Corrective Lenses
If you wear corrective lenses; add a second pair to your bug out bag. Store them in a protective hard case to keep them from breaking while in your pack.
Trying to survive with impaired vision is a significant disadvantage.
100. Mosquito Head Net
If you are bugging out in dense mosquito-infested regions, a mosquito head net can provide relief.
As we know mosquitos are both a major annoyance and transmit nasty diseases.
101. Survival Watch
Get a survival watch that recharges itself using solar power.
Note of caution, many with a built-in compass are an unreliable gimmick and not worth the money. While there are some tactical watches worth every penny.
102. Electrical Tape
The stuff stretches and sticks; there’s really nothing quite like it.
103. Trekking Poles
If your bug out plan includes a lot of elevation changes, then it might make sense to snag a good pair of anti-shock trekking poles.
They help relieve stress off your legs and knees.
To learn more, check out Outdoor Gear Lab’s 10 Reasons For Trekking Poles.
ULTIMATE “DONE FOR YOU” BUG OUT BAG
Putting together a well-built bug out bag can be a tough challenge even with our free bug out bag checklist.
May you’d prefer to make one purchase and be done. If this sounds like you, then take a look at this Fully Loaded Bug Out Bag.
104. Done-For-You Bug Out Bag Build
It’s a solid bug out bag that includes all the critical gear included in one purchase.
A knowledgeable survival team has made all the gear selections for you, helping to ensure your bag is fully optimized.
FINAL WORDS OF ADVICE
My final word of advice is to take action today using this free bug out bag checklist. If you don’t already have a bug out bag, invest in one today.
For those of us serious about prepping know disasters happen when we least expect them. If you wait; it might be too late.
Remember: Prepare, Adapt, and Overcome,
“Just In Case” Jack
P.s. Do you know where the closest nuclear bunker is from your home?
There are a lot of natural nuclear shelters in the US that are absolutely free. And one of them is near your home.
Click on the image above to find out where you need to take shelter.
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