Bugout bag list: 5 Unexpected survival items
an excerpt from Prepare For Anything by Tim MacWelch
Opinions about survival gear and bug-out bag contents are as varied as political views these days. Everybody has his or her own version of the right and wrong stuff to carry – and don’t you dare contradict them! But what about the weird stuff—those bizarre items that you might not think to carry?
Most people don’t spend much time on the unusual things that could be (or should be) in larger survival kits and BOBs.
Here are my top 5 “under the radar” essentials:
Concentrated Energy Drink If you are a caffeine addict like most folks, then these little bottles of nectar will go down smoother than spinach in Popeye’s throat – particularly when coffee and soda aren’t available. When you’re running out of steam, knock back an energy drink and keep plugging away. It also helps to stave off caffeine-withdrawal headaches.
Cigarettes Even if you don’t smoke, think of all the smokers out there who would instantly become your best friend if you had spare smokes to hand out. They also make for good, lightweight tinder. Cigarettes are excellent tinder for most optical fire starting methods (mirrors and magnifying lenses).
Vodka One of those little airline-size bottles can serve as a wee nip to swallow for courage or as a disinfectant used with your medical gear. Vodka can help out in a pinch with its many different uses. It can be a deodorizer, fire starter, anti-fungal skin treatment, and many other things that would be useful during and emergency.
Candy Vodka won’t solve everything. Keep some hard candy in your survival pack. Sugar is great short-term fuel, and a few sweets can lift the morale of both grown-ups and kids in a group. Consider candy that won’t melt, candy that is easy to divide (or ration), and candy that will be favored by your group.
Notepad With a simple notepad, you can communicate or signal for help, keep a journal, take handy notes for your survival situation, use the paper as tinder, and the list goes on. Add a pencil or two as well. These can be sharpened with a pocket knife, and they won’t dry out like pens.
And if that’s not enough, you can:
Follow Tim on Twitter @timmacwelch
Take one of his survival classes at Advancedsurvivaltraining.com
Check out more of MacWelch’s outdoor skills and survival articles at Outdoor Life Magazine’s survival site, The Survivalist