When the time comes to Bug Out, you need a good reliable backpack for your Premade Bug Out Bag!
Whether you’re planning to be a survivalist or a prepper the one crucial similarity between strategies is both believe in having a premade bug out bag ready for a quick escape…
Pay close attention because what you’re about to learn could save your life.
First off, let’s cover Why you need a Bug Out Bag.
You need to have your bug out gear ready to go for two main reasons:
#1. You need to eat to stay alive. So having a portable supply of several days worth of food and water is vital for your survival.
#2. You need necessities if your home becomes unfit for you to live there. So having the right combination of survival gear (non-food items) are also important.
The goal here is simple, in the event of an emergency be it natural or man-made, you’re ready to grab your backpack and go.
Secondly, let’s cover rules for how to pick a backpack for a Bug Out Bag.
You want a good quality bag with double stitching that has plenty of compartments to keep everything organized. Military style backpacks are perfect.
You should even have a bag for babies and toddlers in the family. While infants can’t carry the bag themselves, it’s wise to have all their formula, diapers, wipes, and clothes packed and ready, too.
In a crisis you don’t want a hungry crying baby making you do anything stupid because you didn’t plan.
Children and teenagers, however, can carry their backpacks and it’ll make them feel safer knowing that they have their supplies.
How big should my backpack be?
The sizes and weights of packs vary. However, backpacks can be purchased so that they’re the right fit for children and adults.
Also for children, you’re going to want sturdy, yet lightweight material. And, you’ll want backpacks that are waterproof.
For teenagers, you can get the backpacks with the frames, but you might not want to do this for younger children because of the added weight of the structure. These packs can be purchased with internal or external frames. Military style is the top backpacks for teens, too.
Children’s survival backpacks are a smaller version of the adult sized ones, and some of them have pockets that you can access without having to stop and take the bag off. Many people find this added convenience helpful.
Some backpacks also have padded shoulder straps and are made of water-resistant nylon. And most packs also come with multiple pockets and hooks for storing essential gear and supplies.
Almost every backpack comes with expandable straps, and some come with a hydration pocket. Look for ones that are hydration compatible if you want that feature but be warned that any unnecessary features add weight that could be problematic on a long hike away from the crisis area.
Any good tactical backpack is designed like this, and you can buy backpacks in all sizes, shapes, and colors, but remember, bug out bags are not to be mistaken for use when going camping. These packs need to fully pack and stocked at all times and left alone until they’re needed for a quick escape.
Third, what Survival Food Should You Pack?
There are a lot of places that sell the survival bars. These bars are good for you, packed with nutrients and can give you the calories you need to survive. But just because you need to survive doesn’t mean that all you eat are the survival bars.
BTW, survival bars can be purchased in bulk, they’re tasty and do fit easily into your backpack, but there are a lot of different survival foods that you can also include in your bag. That said, pack 2 – 3 survival bars per day, per person.
You probably wouldn’t believe what some people pack but for this guide we’ll stick with the basics.
The goal is survival and you there are a variety of foods you can pack. Some food supplies even have a shelf life of 25 years. Hopefully, if you need to bug out, your crisis won’t last that long. Although 3 days to a week could happen.
Let’s get back to our topic, Survival Food.
Survival doesn’t mean you have to eat cardboard-tasting food all the time. You can even have gourmet meals as your survival foods. Some You can rotate food items in and out of their backpack to keep them fresh.
The idea is to keep foods that are fresh, portable and fit easily in your backpack, ready to go.
Other examples of survival food are freeze-dried foods that lock in the nutrients and taste. When you’re ready to eat them, all you have to do is re-hydrate the food with water.
Trail mix, vegetables, and fruits that are freeze-dried can also be easily packed. You can have greens like peas, beans, and broccoli. Or you can have strawberries and apple slices. There are even desserts like chocolate pudding.
Whatever your taste-buds like. You can also find survival food packets that have meat as well as packaged cheeses. Mix in 1 – 2 servings of fruits, vegetables, meat and cheese per day, per person. What you don’t eat can be traded with other groups if you run out of something important like baby formula and diapers.
Meals Ready to Eat
Besides the freeze dried foods that you can buy in bulk, you can also buy MREs.
These always remind me of my days in the USMC. Yum, nothing like eating freeze dried pork patties!
While MREs are not as tasty as the gourmet freeze-dried foods, they are filling, will keep you alive, and can be easily packed in your backpack. You can order MREs in yearly supplies if you want and they last a long time as long as they are not opened.
More survival food ideas…
Things like granola bars and beef jerky are sustainable foods that pack well and will keep you alive in a pinch.
Choosing a variety of foods is also something that you can get the kids involved with. Children like picking out their foods for their backpacks, but remember the goal is not a camping trip, it’s surviving a crisis. So plan well what goes into your survival bag because supplies run out fast and space is a premium when you figure a fully packed backpack weighs 30 – 70 pounds.
Finally, let’s briefly cover what else goes in your Survivalist Bug Out Bag?
Bear with me, because I’m going to cover this section of the guide quickly…
Aside from a good survival first aid kit, you’ll need three days worth of water for everyone, roughly a couple of canteens or a couple of large water bottles, per grown-up, per day. But you’ll want to take along something to collect water in for the days ahead and an emergency water filter kit. Also, pack water purifying tablets. Bleach can do in a pinch but is harder to pack and could make you sick if you use too much.
If your planning for long-term survival at home, a favorite to have on-hand is a waterbob because it can hold up to 100 gallons of fresh water in your bathtub.
Water weighs 8.34 pounds per gallon and someone needs to lug it so consider your water options carefully, especially if you’re packing for children and infants.
Aside from food and water, you need a way to cook the food and boil the water. To cook the food, you’ll need a basic cooking set, which would be lightweight pots that can be used over campfires or on a portable camp stove.
Then you’ll want to pack clothes for two days. The clothes that you’re wearing when you bug out will count as your third set. And make sure you pack long pants, long-sleeved shirts and other clothing that will keep you (all) warm.
You’ll want to pack long pants and shirts even if it’s summer. Long pants and long sleeved shirts will protect your skin from pests and will keep you warm if the temperatures dip at night. You’ll also want to pack extra socks and underwear. Take sturdy hiking boots along, too.
Rain gear like a poncho can be used as a shelter in a pinch. Bring a hat along to keep the rain and the sun off your head. Take sunglasses to protect your eyes in case you’re out in the sun for long periods. A bandanna should be packed because it can have a multitude of uses.
Shelter materials should also go in your backpack. Take a tent or a tarp along with cording in the event you need to tie something to trees. Carry a sleeping bag or a sleeping pad along to protect you from having to sleep directly on the ground. Make sure there are enough emergency blankets for everyone.
This sounds like a lot of gear but it can be spread across each backpack.
Personal hygiene materials need to go in your bug out bag and don’t forget your first aid kit. Fire starters are necessary as are waterproof matches. Take a flashlight that uses solar power rather than batteries (We’ll cover this item in detail later on in another guide).
You’ll also want fishing gear, a knife, and a multi-tool. An emergency radio and a way to charge your cell phone using solar power should be included in your bug out bag. Have sturdy gloves and a small ax that can be used to make a clearing or to get debris out of your way.
You’ll want to have a folding shovel and duct tape along, too. Bring your important papers and pack entertainment. A computer tablet is good and may come in handy for other uses.
Finally, make sure that you bring a weapon such as a gun or survival knife to protect yourself and your family. This may sound extreme, but fathers and mothers get mighty desperate when their babies haven’t eaten for days. In worst cases, you also need to watch out for looters who will rob you of all your supplies.
Best related topics on Living Obscure are:
- How to keep warm in a crisis: blankets and fire.
- Which survival knife you should have in a crisis.
- How to pack a first aid kit that will be useful.
- Setting up a survival camp for the short or long term.
If you’re new to survivalist training, you still might not know what a bug out bag is so let’s summarize.
It’s a backpack with all the gear you need to survive, and that you can grab fast and go on your way in the event of a disaster (Hence, where it gets the name “Bug Out Bag“).
If you aren’t able to purchase a backpack as describe above any sturdy nylon bag will work but keep in mind it might be harder to carry, long term.
The key takeaway is to be ready with the best premade bug out bag you can grab and run with that will help to sustain you when the crap hits the fan!
Living Obscure takes planning!
That concludes this quick guide about survival backpacks (bug out bags). There are obviously other planning steps to do, and we’ll cover strategies for them in other guides here on Living Obscure, so keep reading and remember to be ready to bug out…
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