When you want to be prepared for an emergency, it helps to have a bug out bag checklist. A bug out bag is a kit designed to help you evacuate and survive for at least three days. This can be the difference between survival and certain death. But it only works if you have the items you need.
Each able-bodied member of your family should have a backpack/bag to help carry the essential items you will need in a bug out scenario although care must be taken to not overburden anyone, Remember you are bugging out and speed may be key to your survival.
Ensure that once you have your bags packed you and your family do a dry run to make sure you are happy with the weights and no one is overburdened.
The following items are recommended for a bug out bag to take care of your survival needs
- Sturdy backpack to hold items (A backpack with a frame would be best e.g an alice pack)
- Sleeping bag
- Bivi bag
- Plastic sheet (For ground mat or water collection)
- Tent or tarp for shelter
- First aid kit – including prescription and prescription medications (a three-day supply)
- Small first aid memoir
- Children’s medications (if applicable)
- Feminine hygiene items (if applicable)
- Baby wipes and diapers (if applicable, though baby wipes are useful for cleaning up for all ages)
- Change of clothing – including pants, a short sleeve shirt, a long sleeve shirt, socks, underwear, a jacket, work gloves
- Raincoat or poncho
- Emergency blanket
- Camping lantern
- Waterproof matches
- Flares/signal mirror
- Snare wire
- Compact fishing kit (hobo fishing reel would be perfect)
- Three day supply of food – such as granola bars, protein bars, trail mix, dried fruit, canned tuna, canned chicken, Vienna sausages, beef jerky, juice, candy, Meals Ready to Eat
- Three day supply of water – about four liters per person
- Can opener (A small P-38 would be best)
- Utensils for eating
- Folding shovel
- Axe/hatchet (I prefer the hatchet as its smaller but this is personal preference)
- Knife (More than one)
- Cordage (Paracord)
- Duct tape
- Solar powered radio (with backup batteries)
- Toilet paper
- Hand sanitizer
- Dish soap
- Flint and steel
- Water purification tablets or lifestraw (Could also use reverse osmosis kit if near the coast)
- Small sewing kit
- Entertainment items – such as a deck of cards, knitting supplies, a book to read, paper, pen
- Personal documents – including legal documents, insurance policies, birth certificates, car titles, copies of prescriptions, etc.
- Cash – at least enough for three nights in a hotel
- Pet items – including food, water, cat litter, leash, bedding
- Other items as needed for children such as formula, pacifiers, bottles, etc.
- Map and compass (Be sure you know how to use this)
Now that you’ve looked at this bug out bag checklist, you may be feeling a little overwhelmed. But it’s important to know that you don’t have to purchase all of this at once. If you can add a few items each week or month, you’ll eventually collect all you need.
The most important tool in your survival arsenal will alway be knowledge, Carrying all this equipment without the knowledge to use and maintain it is as good as not having it at all.
When it comes to food, make sure you create a menu plan so that you know what you’ll eat each day. And every six months you’ll want to check expiration dates and replace food that’s near the end of its shelf life.
Once you’ve collected these items, you’ll need to keep them in an area where you can easily access them in an emergency. A bug out bag checklist can help you to keep in mind what you have and what you still need to purchase as you prepare for survival needs.
This kit is a general kit and can be cut down to preferance and with practical bushcraft knowledge.