Several types of emergency preparedness kits are commonly referred to as a Bug Out Bag or BOB. Each serves a different, though sometimes similar purpose in being prepared for whatever might come your way. A BOB contains those basic bug out bag essentials that will always come in handy no matter the situation. These are items that will help you survive emergency situations and daily challenges more easily. So preparing the best bug out bag that you can may someday save you and your family's life. This guide is designed to do just that.
What Exactly Is A Bug Out Bag?
It may help to think of the three types of bags this way: In the event of a disaster, your everyday carry gear gets you from where you are to your get home bag (GHB). Your GHB gets you to your bug out bag (BOB). And your BOB is designed to keep you safe for an extended period of time.
A bug out bag is an emergency kit that provides everything you need to survive for up to a week without any outside contact or resources.
Should things become so bad that you have to leave your home, you won’t be able to drive down to the local Wal-Mart and stock up on everything you’ll be needing. So it’s important to spend some time ahead of the disaster, assessing your current situation and needs. As well as anticipating your needs down the road.
The items that you choose to pack in your bug out bag may differ from one person to another when all things are considered. The only thing that makes someone who has spent years building a bug out bag similar to someone who just started a few days ago. Is the basic items they select as a part of their bug out bag contents.
Factors That Influence The Best Bug Out Bag
Different factors mean different needs. Things to consider when building your own bug out bag should include:
1. Where Do You Live?
Living in a rural or urban environment will influence your needs during a survival situation. If you're likely to face survival in a disaster-stricken inner city environment, you may require self-defense and demolition tools more than shelter and fire starting materials. However, most people will likely attempt to make it to a wilderness area to wait out whatever situation they're getting away from.
2. What If Your Home Were No Longer Safe?
Planning ahead gives you the opportunity to get a feel for the land and map out various strengths and weaknesses. If you require a map for your chosen area, you'll want to include one as you pack your bug out bag gear.
3. How Will You Get There?
Depending on the type of disaster, there's the possibility that you'd be on foot. You may need two destinations. One that you can reach by car and another by foot. If you were able to “bug out” in your vehicle, all the better, but you want to pack your bug out bag with the thought that you'll be carrying it a long way. Keeping that in mind will help you to make realistic weight limit decisions. You could always keep an extra bag of “nice to have” items close by to throw in the back of the truck or car if you can drive.
4. Who Depends On You?
If disaster struck, who would look to you for help? Do you have children in the home? A spouse or partner you need to consider? Keep these people in mind when planning and packing your bug out bag. Involve them in planning and have them, or help them, pack a bug out bag for themselves, as well.
5. Unique Medical Needs?
Do you or those you care for have any unique medical needs that should be considered? Rescue medications like inhalers and Epi-pens should always have a priority place in any emergency preparedness kit.
Bug Out Bag Checklist
Your bug out bag checklist must be essential for survival. These items remain the same for everyone and they are necessary if you find yourself in an emergency situation. If you find yourself having to use your survival supplies, it means you won't be going home for a while. So you'll need to make sure you are prepared.
You should build your bag based on a minimum of a 3-day worth of supplies. As a first timer building a bug out bag, don’t let it intimidate you. As long as you have something to rely on when the time comes, you will be better off than most people. Check out my my article on The Ultimate Bug Out Bag Essentials List to ensure you are well prepared.
Only Pack The Essentials
The fact is, unless your bug out bag is a camper hooked to a truck, you just can't take everything. That would be camping and not bugging out at all. So at some point you'll have to make choices based on space and weight limitations. You'll need to consider the distance you'll be traveling, as weight can really add up over miles. Being able to get a pack on your back and walk across the yard is no test of your ability to get from point A to point B with it.
Remember, the best bug out bag is the one you have when you need it. Having more than you can safely carry, could force you to make decisions about what to leave behind, while already under stress. That won't set you up for success.
The weight recommendations for men is up to 20% of their body weight. This is an outside max, and assumes peak physical condition. Ten to 15% is a much more realistic weight goal. Weight recommendations for women is 10% to 15% max.
Everything has weight and takes up space. Refer back to your planning phase and remember to choose those items that you are most likely to need first. Then continue to add to it based on space and weight availability.
Choose A Good Bug Out Backpack
Keep a couple of things in mind. A compact bag, packed full with no extra space is going to be the easiest to carry. A larger, loosely packed bag, even with equal weight is more uncomfortable. So choose the smallest bag that will still accommodate the volume and weight that you're targeting. Remember also that the bag itself weighs something. Choosing a light but durable bag will be vital to having the best tactical bug out bag possible.
How To Assemble Your Bug Out Bag
Packing things flat or rolled very tightly, will allow you to fit more in less space. Make a list of items along with their weight. Start packing the most important, keeping track of the overall weight as it grows, and choose the Best Military Tactical Backpack on the market.
Don't overestimate your ability to carry your pack for hours at a time. This is a costly mistake that may land you without the survival gear you need. Once you've carried a too heavy pack as far as you're able. You'll have to lighten it beyond the recommended weight in order to finish your trek.
Proper packing with keeping your weight limit in mind at all times, is a vital part of preparing the best bug out bag inventory possible.
Building The Best Bug Out Bag Conclusion
Once you've packed your bug out bag, take it out for a weekend of camping and survival training. Practicing your survival skills in a non-stress environment insures that you're ready physically and mentally, when the challenge arises.
Skills that are only in your head, may not serve you well in the field. After a weekend of surviving with your bug out backpack, unpack, re-evaluate and repack. Did you find that you needed things you didn't have? Did you have things you didn't need, or that would have been better traded out for a different item? Preparing for the future and knowing what basic bug out bag essentials to put in your survival pack allows you the peace of mind to relax and enjoy the here and now. If you're prepared, you don't need to be scared. Start prepping today.