A bug out bag is a bag, or backpack, that you can grab in an emergency. If you have to unexpectedly leave your home, for several days, one of these bags, loaded with essential supplies, is a great item to take with you. Although you can personalize the items in your bug out bag, there are some basics that everyone should include in theirs.
Supplies to Keep You Warm
1. Start with a sturdy backpack. A backpack is the easiest way to store a large amount of supplies in a way that is convenient to grab quickly and carry easily during an emergency. A high quality pack will ensure that your gear stays protected.
2. Roll up a hooded sweater or fleece jacket and tuck in the bottom of your bag. A sweater or jacket will keep you warm, and a hood is essential for retaining your body heat, or to use as a pillow if you end up sleeping on the ground. A space blanket is also a good addition for keeping warm on cold days or nights.
3. Tuck in a small tent. If a situation calls for you to use your bug out bag, you may need to sleep outside for several nights. Even a small pup tent will provide adequate shelter during inclement weather.
4. Include matches and a lighter. Store your matches in a waterproof container and add a lighter to your bag. Soak cotton balls in lighter fluid and pack them in a zip close plastic bag, these will help you start a fire, even in wet weather.
5. Feed yourself. Whether you choose freeze-dried camping food or military MREs, you need to include food in your bug out bag. If you use military MREs, you can manage on one MRE per day. Pack three day’s worth of food in your bag.
6. Include plenty of water. You will need to bring a minimum of one quart of water per person per day; plan for at least three days. Include a portable water filter and water purification tablets in your pack so you can replenish your supply when necessary.
7. Pack a fish hook or two and some fishing line in a small tin container or empty film canister. You can usually find a worm or an insect to use as bait, allowing you the option of adding some fresh fish to your diet.
8. Add a knife, a small camp stove and a metal mug or pot. These will help in all of your meal preparations.
Supplies to Keep You Comfortable
9. Add a set of clean underwear. If you have to rough it for several days, nothing feels better than changing your underwear. This will take up very little space in your bug out bag and be good for your morale.
10. Include personal hygiene items. You will need to bring a travel-sized toothbrush and toothpaste, soap in a water-tight container, toilet paper and hand sanitizer.
11. Add some cold hard cash to your bug out bag supplies. Generally, cash is advised to have because, during many emergency situations, ATMs and banks are not working/or open.
12. Stock a well-supplied first aid kit and keep in your bug out bag. Your kit should include latex gloves, sterile dressings, antibiotic ointment, burn ointment, adhesive bandages, a thermometer, your prescription medications and any medical supplies you use on a regular basis.
13. Add a flashlight, a small radio and extra batteries to your bug out bag and you are now ready for any emergency.