An Internet search for “bug out bag” will return pages of links.
Search on “get home bag” delivers similar results.
Missy and I focus more on getting home rather than bugging out, but have to admit there are possibilities of each.
Of course the odds are that we will not have to bug out or trek home any day in the foreseeable future. However, it would be foolhardy to assume nothing serious will ever go wrong.
So we have packed Get Home Bags that also serve as bugout bags. Our list could be a starting point for yours. If you want to do it right, you will look at other lists. I daresay many have good ideas that will serve you well.
I have read several non-fiction books on preparedness. They are not FUN for me, but are undoubtedly valuable. I far prefer to get my inspiration from fiction. Even when the characters or scenarios are weak, there is always good information and food for thought.
My favorite starting place for a Get Home Bag is to imagine that due to earthquake, storm-related road blockage, EMP or other disaster, you have to walk home.
For me I consider a 7-mile walk from the nearby small town to be something I could do in two or three hours. In that period of time I won’t need food, blankets, fire or even water, though an occasional drink would be nice and clothes for the weather will be the main consideration.
The small city we visit weekly is 25 miles away. That is more like 10 hours of walking. I probably won’t do that in one go, but two days ought to do it. This ups the considerations significantly. Good walking shoes, change of socks, warmth, dryness, snack food and more are things we will wish were along (and wish they weighed nothing at the same time).
When we trip to The Big City 😉 , we are talking about over 70 miles to home on foot following a disaster. That is more than a week walking up the road. Society will change after a couple of days. It could become dangerous walking on the highway during daylight hours. Now we have to consider switching to resting during the day and quietly walking at night.
Or be unprepared.
First a confession: Our kits are not yet complete as of this writing.
Now, On to the lists.
Get Home Kit
backpack – lots of pockets, straps
batteries (AA rechargeable with solar charger)
can opener (on multi-tool/Swiss army knife)
cane or walking stick (tarp prop, tool, weapon)
char cloth (fire starter)
clothes pins or bull dog clips
duty belt + suspenders
earbuds for quiet radio operation
hand warmers, chemical
jerky and dried fruit
Bic lighter [wrapped with 3’+ of duct tape]
mirror w/magnifying side
paracord 25-feet (+)
poncho, slicker, broad-brim hat
silver and FRN’s
sleeping mat (with moisture barrier)
tarp – cammo
trowel, compact digger
watch (foil wrapped)
zip lock bag (quality resealable)
Every Day Kit
vest, oversized, fisherman-type with lots of big pockets
batteries (standardize everything on AA)
cell phone (won’t work in some scenarios)
first aid kit, compact
flashlight, medium-sized, strong
handkerchief and/or bandanna
magazines, mag pouch
radio in foil bag, with spare AA-battery adapter
socks (change back and forth every two hours)
vest with pockets
water system – bottle + Sawyer Mini
First Aid Kit, medium, contents:
bandages – butterfly & regular
coconut oil (with essential oils added)
feminine napkins (multiple use)
Neosporin or silver gel
pain reliever (acetaminophen & ibuprofen)