The Ultimate Bug Out Bag

I was browsing the internet this morning and I came across an article on instructables.com. I found it it be a nice setup, So I thought I would share it with you all.

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Wikipedia defines a bug out Bag as:

"A bug-out bag is a portable kit that normally contains the items one would require to survive for seventy-two hours, when evacuating from a disaster, however some kits are designed to last longer periods of time than just 72 hours. The focus is on evacuation, rather than long-term survival, distinguishing the bug-out bag from a survival kit, a boating or aviation emergency kit, or a fixed-site disaster supplies kit. The kits are also popular in the survivalism subculture.

The term "bug-out bag" is related to, and possibly derived from, the "bail-out bag" emergency kit many military aviators carry. In the United States, the term refers to the Korean War practice of the U.S. Army designating alternate defensive positions, in the event that the units had to displace. They were directed to "bug out" when being overrun was imminent. The concept passed into wide usage among other military and law enforcement personnel, though the "bail-out bag" is as likely to include emergency gear for going into an emergency situation as for escaping an emergency.

Other names for such a bag are a BOB, 72-hour kit, a grab bag, a battle box, a Personal Emergency Relocation Kits (PERK), a go bag, a GOOD bag (Get Out Of Dodge) or INCHbag (I’m Never Coming Home)."

Well, if all I have to take a bag, or there is two of us and we get two bags, I am going to need more than to survive for 72 hours. If the Zombie Apocalypse, the Zompocalypse, the you know, occurs, I’m betting Rick et al. would be much appreciative of something with a little more than a water bottle and a med kit.

My parameters:

(1) Must be light enough to carry;

(2) Must be compact enough to not getting in the way when in an all-out run;

(3) Must have any and everything I, or a small group, could need to survive.

Assumptions:

(1) I will not be alone, at the least, my fiancée will likely be with me, and her bag will contain almost entirely clothes. The bag will thus be lighter in weight and allow her more freedom to move. I do not mean this in anyway saying that men are more fit than women, or anything like that. I am a former Div. I track runner, in the balance, I can take more of the weight. If your companion (assuming 2-person deal here) is the more fit for moving fast person, regardless of gender or age, they should carry this bag, and then you should carry the clothes.

(2) Along the way we would be able to pick up food supplies. Food and water are the first to run out, but with enough water treatment, ways of catching food, and ways of cooking it, the strength comes in the versatility of your supplies and how they move.

NB: Some items are doubled-up on (fire starters, etc.), for those items, in a larger group, would be distributed so that only one is held per person so if there are any issues, at least one of those items survives.

With that, I give you … The Ultimate Bug Out Bag.

Thanks ezeisel for the great post.

The Three Levels of Preparing – Code Green Prep

It is easy to think of prepping as being one single set of actions, designed to prepare for any and all future challenges as/when/if they occur, and of the differences between types of situations and necessary responses as being on a smooth continuum, from trivial and minor to life changing/threatening and major.

This is only partially true, and masks the very different types of situations and preparations required.  There are very different sets of responses to different types of situations – perhaps best to think of prepping like a plane, which you control very differently while taxiing on the ground compared to when flying through the air.

In fact, rather than just two modes of response (like a plane), we suggest it is most helpful to create three different sets of future challenges, and to identify prepping solutions for each of these, because the three different types of preparations are very different from each other.  These three levels of preparing, and the three levels of future challenges, are :

Level 1 :  Short Term

Short term problems are those which are, obviously enough, of short duration.  They are events that clearly have an expected resolution to them via society’s normal mechanisms, and it is just a case of waiting for the issues to be resolved.

An example of a short term problem would be a major storm, flood, or power outage.  Such events could inconvenience you for anywhere from an hour or two up to perhaps a week or two.  Lesser events can be considered, too – having your car break down on the side of the road late at night, for example.

In such cases your response to such challenges generally does not require evacuating your normal residence – indeed, by definition, any Short Term/Level 1 events are ones which do not require you to leave home.

You may lose power, you may lose other utilities, and you may have transportation challenges, and there may be regional disruptions to normal social support functions.  But the functioning of the country as a whole remains unchallenged, and in some form or another, you know that matters will, in the foreseeable future, return to normal.  Society is not disrupted, you don’t have lawlessness or looting.

How/what do you prepare for and respond to a Level 1/Short Term disruption?  Things like an emergency generator and enough fuel to power it for a couple of weeks.  Extra fuel for at least one of your vehicles.  Food and water for a couple of weeks.  A two-way radio, although there’s a good chance your landline and cell phones will still work, as may also your internet.

You only slightly modify your normal lifestyle, and you are secure in the certainty that life will be back to normal well before you’ve exhausted your emergency supplies.

A person can be well prepared for Level 1 events without needing to outlay more than $10,000, and probably without needing to outlay much more than $1,000.

Level 2 :  Medium Term

These are obviously events which are more major than Level 1 events.  We define Level 2 events by the need to abandon your normal residence and move somewhere else.  Level 2 events disrupt the total fabric of your region, and are more open ended in terms of when and how matters will return to normal.  They might be natural – a solar storm wiping out our power grid, for example.  They might be economic – a collapse in the global economy – something which we seem to be flirting with at present.  They might be the result of military action, or could be any one of many other issues – maybe even something minor which then snowballs and destroys the increasingly fragile and delicate state of today’s modern interdependent society.

Level 2 events may even threaten people’s lives due to interruptions not only to utility services such as water, sewer, power/gas, trash, and communications, but also due to disruptions to the distribution system for food, gasoline, and other essentials – disruptions which appear likely to extend beyond the point at which most non-preppers can cope.

Some lawlessness and looting will develop, as desperate people search for food.

On the other hand, these problems, as severe as they are, have some sort of an eventual happy ending and resolution clearly in sight, such as to see the restoration of normal infrastructure and a return to ‘life as we know it’ (LAWKI) at some reasonable point in the future.

How do you prepare for and respond to a Level 2/Medium Term disruption?  You need a secure location where you can shelter from the lawlessness that may envelope cities and other areas of dense population, and where you can create your own little bubble of comfort, safety, and what passes for civilization.

Possibly your retreat will still have essential services connected to it (power most of all), but you’ll be prepared for an eventuality without power.

You’ll live primarily from stored supplies without worrying too much about replenishing them.  Sure, you’ll try and reduce your reliance on external sources of most things, but you’ll not feel the need to become 100% self-reliant or to adopt a 100% sustainable independent life.  Instead, you’ll happily live off your stockpiles of food, energy sources, and whatever else, because you can see a clear restoration of ‘normalcy’ at some point within a year or so.

You need two way radio communication to supplement any remaining ‘normal’ types of communication, but primarily to communicate among yourselves, and perhaps augmented by a shortwave radio receiver so you can keep updated with news of ‘the rest of the world’ and what is happening to resolve the problems your region has suffered.

You may choose to do this independently by yourself, because you have the supplies and resources you need.  Alternatively, and perhaps for optional social reasons rather than for any essential needs, you may choose to band together with other prepared people too.

Level 2 clearly requires a massively greater amount of preparation (and expenditures) than Level 1.  If you have only prepared for Level 1 contingencies, you’ll have a problem surviving a Level 2 event, primarily due to not having a retreat location to move to.  Cities will quickly become lethal environments, and even if you successfully manage to evacuate the city you live in, so what?  Where will you move to?  See our article about the modern day imbalance between city and rural life – there’s no way that small country towns can suddenly accept four times more people than they had before as refugees from the cities.  If you don’t have somewhere to go to, already prepared, you have in effect nowhere to go to.

Preparing for a Level 2 event will cost you anywhere from $100,000 as an absolute bare-bones minimum up to $1 million or more.  These costs will start to encourage you to adopt group/shared solutions.  While two people can never live (or prepare) as cheaply as one, they sure can do so for much less than double the cost.  There’s not only safety in numbers, but economy too.

If you feel it impractical to consider preparing to Level 2 standards yourself, don’t give up.  The reality is that a Level 2 condition is close to essential.  Maybe Code Green can help.  Ask about becoming a member of our cooperative community and how you can benefit from shared investments in Level 2 and Level 3 preparations.

Level 3 :  Long Term

This is the big one.  Society has broken down.  Something has destroyed much of the infrastructure not just of your region, and not just of the United States, but of most of the entire world.  This might be a bio-disaster (a flu pandemic as has several times come very close in the last decade) or a global conflict, or an EMP pulse, or any one of many other events.Y

ou’re not yet reduced to a stone age life-style, but you’ve no idea when you’ll be able to resupply any of the items you’ve stockpiled, and so your focus now is on sustainable ongoing self-contained living.

Whereas in Level 1 events, you happily lived off and even squandered your stored supplies, sure in the knowledge that the event was short term, and in Level 2 events, you were more prudent and glad you had spares for essential items and generous amounts of ‘just in case’ materials, with Level 3 events, you’re not just focused on spares for essential items, but on how to build replacement products from raw materials and how to adjust to a life with massively fewer modern and complex appliances.

You of course have needed to evacuate if you lived in a city, and the lawlessness (or arbitrary capricious unilateral attempts at imposing draconian ‘order’) is pervasive.  It is an ‘every man for himself’ sort of situation, and yes, it may also become a ‘kill or be killed’ situation too.  Starving people, facing certain death for themselves and their families, will have no choice but to fight for food and shelter, and you in turn will have no choice but to defend that which you have.

You need to change your lifestyle so that you can become self-sustaining and self-sufficient.  Sure, you’ll use up your stockpiled supplies as you devolve down to a level of sustainable self-sufficiency, and as you do so, you realize that you might never be able to replace such things.  You need to become both energy and food independent, and your energy independence needs to be not just in the form of PV solar cells (because what do you do as they degrade and fail, in a situation where you have no replacements and where you can’t create the underlying pre-requisite technology to manufacture more) but rather in the form of some type of energy source that you can maintain and operate indefinitely.

Food independence can be slightly modified by trading off surpluses of the types of food you can grow with surpluses of food developed by other nearby families and communities.

You need to become part of a community because you don’t have enough resources, by yourself and with whatever handful of friends and family are with you, to have all the talents, skills, and resources necessary to optimize your life.  You need to be able to communicate, bi-directionally, not just locally and regionally, but nationally and internationally, so as to understand what has happened to and what is happening to the rest of your country and the world, and to coordinate your activities with those of other pockets of survivors.

If you have already prepared for a Level 2 contingency, you’ll have a ‘parachute’ to cushion your crash-landing down into the post-industrial society that you’ll be entering.  The most important thing is you have a place to retreat to, and enough supplies and resources to buy you some time to urgently start adapting to the new future staring you in the face.

It would be better, of course, if you already have some Level 3 planning and preparations in place, but if you’re already at Level 2, you’re way ahead of most other people.

How much does it cost to be prepared for a Level 3 situation?  That’s a question with a huge range of possible answers, and it depends on how much of life’s former comforts you want to try and preserve and for how long, how much you want to have in place to devolve down to less complex forms of technology, and how far you can split such costs with fellow preppers.

This is where Code Green Prep can help.  Ask about becoming a member of our cooperative community and how you can benefit from shared investments in Level 2 and Level 3 preparations.

Here’s a table showing some of the key differences in these three levels of future event and their implications to us as preppers.

Item Level 1 Level 2 Level 3
Duration Short – maybe up to a week or two Medium – perhaps up to a year Longterm
Likelihood of Occuring Varies regionally, but between likely and definite every 5 – 10 years Take your best guess.  A disruptive solar storm = 12% chance every 10 years.  Other risks = you decide. More likely than you’d wish for.  What are the chances of Bird Flu evolving and a global pandemic wiping out a huge slice of the world’s population?  Might Iran or N Korea detonate an EMP over the US?  etc.
Return to Normalcy Assured Very likely Not for a long time, maybe generations
Regional Scope Probably local and limited Extensive, possibly national Definitely national, maybe continental, possibly impacting much/all the world
External Assistance Yes, expected Maybe some, but not much and such resource as there is will be massively over-extended and unable to cope Probably none for extended periods of time
Survivability if Unprepared Yes with some inconvenience and discomfort Marginal to low Very low
Social Disruption Possibly some limited opportunistic rioting and looting, brought under control within a week or so Major, probably new forms of small community government and policing programs will spring up to create pockets of order among much lawlessness Complete.  Organized gangs will dominate
Relocation Can survive in your normal abode Due to breakdown of city services, need to relocate Essential
Food strategy Not a constraint You’ll survive by eating through your stockpiles of food in the hope by the time you’ve eaten it all, order will be restored Your stockpiles of food will give you time to create your own ongoing food sources and to become self sufficient
Energy Some candles, flashlights, warm blankets, open fires, and a generator You’ll reduce your energy needs and rely on a generator and stockpiled fuel, perhaps using some in-place renewable energy sources too. Stockpiled fuel will be used carefully as you transition to energy independence and renewable sources
Defense Stay at home.  Biggest threat will probably be rude/pushy neighbors.  Hopefully no lethal threats or responses needed. Moderately uncoordinated groups of starving people or opportunistic raiders, will probably be able to be repelled by presentation of weapons and maybe occasional skirmishes.  They are looking for easy targets. Organized groups will battle among themselves for regional supremacy, and will ‘fight to the finish’ to take over the assets and resources of others.  Expect stolen military weapons as well as civilian rifles/shotguns/pistols to be used.
Transportation Stay at home Necessary to get to your retreat.  Little need to travel outside your retreat boundaries. Necessary to get to your retreat.  Occasional travel to trade with other groups, roads degraded, few mechanized vehicles.  Pushbikes and horse drawn carts become the norm.  Travel is dangerous due to risks from marauders.
Communication Hopefully some normal forms of comms remain operative – radio, tv, land line, cell phone, internet. Traditional comms largely degraded or disrupted.  Short-range two-way radios to keep in touch with other members of your group.  Shortwave radio receiver for general news. Traditional comms all gone.  Long range two-way radio for comms within your group, and to interact with other groups and to understand the world situation and what the future may bring.
Group Size Small.  You can survive just fine, even if alone. Medium.  Your group/community will essentially be the people who share the retreat with you, providing social interaction, extra skills and additional manpower for some tasks. Large.  You need access to as broad a range of skills as possible, and in a nearby region due to dangers and difficulties of traveling.
Cost of Preparing Low – less than $10,000; probably less than $1,000. High – More than $100,000; potentially as much as $1 million (but possibly shared among a group of people). Maximum :  Everything you can afford and more besides.  Definitely requires group participation to make high-cost items affordable.

When Does Each Level Evolve to the Next Level

Determining the type of event you’re facing depends on three things.  The event itself, the reactions/responses of other people, and the level of preparedness you already have in place.

If you have a realistic 5 year supply of everything you could possibly need, you’re in a Level 2 situation for any event that promises to be resolved within that five year situation.  But if you only have a six month supply, then you’re forced to adopt Level 3 measures even if the event seems likely to be resolved within a year.

And if you’re prepared only for Level 1 events, you’re way short on options for any type of Level 2 or 3 event.

If society ‘gracefully degrades’ without rampant lawlessness, and if support mechanisms remain in place, then what could have become a Level 2 – 3 event may remain as an ‘easy’ Level 2 event.  But if society explodes, then even a survivable Level 1 event assumes Level 2 status due to the need to evacuate the city.

At the risk of repeating ourselves, you need to consider how you can improve your preparedness to be able to respond adequately to Level 2 and Level 3 events.  There’s no real trick to lasting out Level 1 situations, but even a mild Level 2 event will be life threatening to many people in the affected area.  Speak to us about the Code Green Prep cooperative communities, and how it might be possible for you to find strength, safety, security, and financial feasibility as part of a larger group of fellow preppers.

The Three Levels of Preparing – Code Green Prep.

The Significance of Emergency Kit

An emergency kit can contain essential items used in a particular occasion and for emergency purpose. Travelers normally bring an emergency kit that contains money, first-aid kit, flashlight and batteries, candles, waterproof matches, can opener, canned and packed food and potable water.

An emergency kit can also be prepared in homes by homeowners. It could contain the basic necessities, tools and equipment that can be used in times of emergency or calamity. An emergency kit can compose of a storage bag containing the basic entities. It may also contain first aid kit, essential equipment that can be used in calamities or during dark periods and communication devices. The size of the kit may vary depending on the number of items that can be stored.

An emergency kit is very important in times of calamities where people are confined in their houses for a few days or staying in an evacuation center. Individuals should prepare the emergency kit that can be used for a minimum of seven days. It should also be stored safely and securely. An emergency kit is significant for the survival of a person, a group of persons or a family in times of disasters.

An emergency kit is similar to a survival kit. Perhaps, the two are interchangeable terms although military operations prefer to call the items packed and stored for emergency uses as survival kits. Meanwhile, campers use the term bug-out bags for emergency kits or survival kits. Homeowners may prefer to name the collection of items for emergency uses as emergency kit.

An emergency kit can be customized according to the needs of the users. It may include more than just the basic necessities. However, the things that can be stored should be essential and usable.

To be prepared in times of disasters is a helpful attitude to have. Preparing the emergency kit is one of the helpful ways to overcome the challenges in a survival situation. Aside from the emergency kit, individuals may also have to make an emergency plan.

An emergency plan can be made for an individual or for the family. It helps a person or a family the proper things to do in case of an emergency. Making an emergency plan may just take less than an hour. The plan may include health information, contact persons and numbers, and list of risks in the region. What is integrated in the plan may differ depending on the person making it. The plan can be best posted on the wall. It could also be placed in an emergency note.

Survival is one of the basic concerns of men. People have to survive different challenges in order to live. The advancement of civilization can provide men the greater chance and opportunities to survive and improve standard of living. However, in a survival situation people

Knives and Wilderness Survival

One of the most important tools that you need to have whenever you are planning a camping, hiking, or any other type of outdoor adventure is a knife. You can use a knife for many different things such as cutting various things, building a shelter, killing food, as well as protection from other animals. A knife is also very convenient and lightweight which makes it very easy to carry with you on any types of outdoor adventure.

There are many different knives that you can take a long with you such as knives at your local outdoor stores. If you find yourself lost in the woods and needing a handy weapon such as a knife you can also make them yourself in many different ways.

One of the most popular types of homemade knives can be made by stone. Simply find a stone that is pointed. Once you have selected the stone you are going to use to create a knife your next step is to lash the stone with either a stick or wood, creating a knife end with the stone. Another popular knife you can create is a bone knife. These are very popular amongst survivalist and can be easily created from any type of bone that you can find, such as an animal bone. After you have a bone you then take a rock or wood and shape it into a pointed knife. A bone knife can be very useful in making punctures.

Another type of knife that you can make when stranded out in the wilderness is a wood knife. You want to make sure that you choose a type of wood that is hard and dry. You want to take your piece of wood and use a stone or other type of wood to shape the piece of wood to a pointed end. A wooden knife is one of the most common choices of weapons to use when stranded in the wilderness, because they are easily created and the materials are literally right at your fingertips.

You can also make a knife with bamboo. Bamboo is very easy to shape but still provides a strong point to use as your jagged edge of your knife. Taking a stone and shaping the knife with a sharp point is very easy to do, that is if you can find a source of bamboo in the area that you are lost in. You can also find metals throughout the wilderness that you can use and have been proven to be very effective in protecting yourself from other predators, as well as building and cutting things. The metal acts just as a real knife does and if you are lucky enough to find some spare metal around, you can easily shave it down into the shape of a knife with a very sharp point.

Knives have always been a very important and significant tool to have if you are deciding to embark on any type of outdoor trip or adventure and should definitely be an item that is a necessity for your survival backpack. So make sure the next time you plan on going on a wilderness adventure that you make sure to stop at the store and grab you some reliable wilderness knives or make your own homemade knife through one of the methods described. You’ll find that a handy knife can be a very valuable tool to have when you are trying to surviving in the outdoors!

Foods for Wilderness Survival

When you find yourself lost in the wilderness, it is very important to know what types of foods are available for you to consume. Most of your food can be found naturally and come in different varieties such as wild berries, fish and other water foods, insects and bugs, birds, and other large animals. It is very important that you have knowledge about each different type of food source and should be researched and learned about before any type of outdoor trip or adventure. Here is a glance of all the different types of food you can use for survival.

Wild Berries – are one of the easiest and most commonly found food items when you are lost in the woods. Most of the wild berries you will find in the wilderness are edible, however you need to make sure that you research all of the different types of wild berries there are and what they look like, so that you make sure you don’t consume a berries that could potentially harm you. Wild berries are especially easy to find in the summer months, however you can still find some wild berries that will grow in the winter time. So make sure that you research and know your berries for food supply when you are lost in the woods.

Fish and Food from the Water – can easily be found and if they are a source from freshwater in North America are most commonly safe to eat. You can eat fish raw, however it is advised that you warm and cook the fish from a fire or portable grill. Catching fish does not have to be a hard task to perform at all. Many fish you can catch barehanded. The easiest way to capture a ton of fish is by waiting by where the fish are found swimming by and then pinning them down to the bottom of the stream. Although it sounds difficult, in actuality it is not. You can also catch other animals for the water to consume such as shell fish and crayfish. All of these water animals are safe to eat and can be easily captured to give you the nutrients and energy you need to survive in the woods.

Insect and Bugs – two of the safest insects and bugs to eat are grasshoppers and wood grubs. Although they aren’t very tasty they can give you the protein and nutrients you need to provide your body while lost in the woods. These two types of insects can be consumed without cooking, however if it is possible it would be better to cook the two. You also want to make sure that you remove the wings and legs from the grasshopper. You can find grasshoppers in grassy areas and wood grubs can be found in rotten logs. There are a ton of insects and bugs that you can consume if you are trapped in the wilderness however, it is wise to gain a good knowledge about different types of insects and bugs that you can consume. Not all insects and bugs can be consumed without giving you bodily harm which is why it is so important that you know what types are safe and which ones are dangerous.

Birds – Although it is very hard to capture a bird without a gun it is possible with rocks. However, survivalists find it much easier to capture a bird from its nest or to capture bird eggs. Capturing bird eggs is one of the top survival food items that someone can get because they are filled with tons of protein that your body needs to give it energy and to survive. You always want to make sure that you cook the eggs before consumption. Never eat eggs raw.

Larger Mammal Animals – Although it can be a daunting task to capture a larger animal without any weapons, you can still however capture an animal through a trap and then kill them to eat. The easiest way to kill an animal for consumption purposes without the use of a knife or gun is by a rock. Make sure that you cook the animal thoroughly. All though you can consume some large animals raw, it is better to be precautious and cook all of your food that you capture.

Although being lost in the woods can be a very scary situation, making sure that you know the foods that are readily available and surrounding you can alleviate one worry off of your shoulder. Making sure that your body stays hydrated and nourished is very important in your goal to surviving the outdoors, so make sure you keep these tips in mind and use them if you ever become lost in the woods.

What to Keep In Short Term Disaster Bag

Like I said in a previous post, There is no one size fits all bag, neither are the contents. The building of your bag is a personal project and should reflect your personal needs. I personally don’t think it is a good idea to go buy a cute little pre-configured “Survival Bag”. Here is a list of items to consider, you don’t have to pack everything, Choose what’s right for you. Click next to each for an example

  1. Small AM / FM Radio Preferably Solar Powered Like This One
  2. Batteries Large to Small (don’t pack ones you don’t need)
  3. Bar of Soap (unscented) eg Ivory
  4. Toothbrush Like This One
  5. 2 pairs of clothes
  6. Pair of Work gloves. Like These
  7. Cold Weather Gloves Like These
  8. Canteens, covers and cups Like This One
  9. Pocket Knife. Like This One
  10. Tactical or Boot knife. Like This One
  11. Sleeping Bag. Like This One
  12. Emergency Blankets Like These
  13. Waterproof Matches. Like These
  14. Spoon and Fork Like This One
  15. Small Stove. Like This One
  16. Military Cook Set Like This One
  17. Water Purifying Tablets. Like These
  18. Toilet Paper.
  19. First Aid Kit Like This One
  20. Over The Counter Medications Like Tylenol, Advil, Benadryl, etc.
  21. MRE’s Like This One
  22. Whistle Like This One
  23. Cell Phone
  24. Solar Cell Phone Charger Like This One
  25. Portable Weather Radio Like This One
  26. Water
  27. Your Prescription Medications

This list is only the beginning, it could go on and on. You could include things like an mp3 player or bible. Just depends on your preferences and needs. These bags are really only meant to be temporary for short term disasters that require you to leave your home. You will never be able to live out of your bag forever. So additional preparations for long term may be needed.

Some of the links above are affiliate links and I do get a small percentage of the sale if you purchase threw those links. I appreciate your support