Preparing a Bug Out Bag for Survival

Preparing a Bug Out Bag for Survival

overloaded solider with rucksackAs a young man I always though that ‘more equipment was better’ – however, I was fitter and stronger then.!

I could carry body weight and more, and still have the strength to carry a bit more.

But, now  I’ve gotten that bit older and supposedly, that bit wiser, I realise it’s far more about your skills than your equipment.

Having the knowledge to live off the land and survive means having to rely on less gear.

That means you have to carry far less in the first place.

So learn your bushcraft skills first and know how to survive off the land using minimum equipment – this will make packing your Bug Out Bag far easier when it comes to choosing what to take and what not.

What do you need to pack in your Bug Out Bag for survival?

Firstly, give some thought to the equipment that is essential to you – personal medication is obviously essential, as are things like glasses and even good fitting boots.! – These items are ‘must haves’ and will keep you going without anything else.

When it comes to a Bug Out Bag, weight is one of the biggest factors – you may well be walking for some time and over a long distance, negotiating rough terrain and the more weight you carry the higher the risk of injury – the amount of weight will also effect the speed at which you can cover ground.

It is highly unlikely you will be able to carry more than a 80lb rucksack for any distance – assuming you can actually get it on your back in the first place.!

So don’t try, the object is to get away from danger and cover ground fast.

Most people can handle a 60lt rucksack like the British Army Assault Pack shown here.

You should be able to pack just about everything you need into one of these rucksack – they have been designed for the military with comfort and survival for soldiers on the move. 

Deciding to ‘go big’ and choosing a 80ltr + rucksack can be a big problem – unless your trained and constantly practice, you will not be able to move fast enough – if you have no choice but to walk, you must be prepared with a suitable sized rucksack.  

Bug Out Bag size is very important, as you may well be required to get out fast and put distance between yourself and the danger that caused you to bug out in the first place.


One of everything is normally sufficient –  man with open jacket full of knives

Why bring half a dozen knives, when one good knife will do?

Think about this – about your pack size/weight.

Place your Bug Out Bag on the ground, and then give it kick –  If your worried your might break something inside, then that bit of kit does not belong in your bag.!

You have to be fully prepared for breakages and damage and the rough terrain ahead of you, similarly, if you land up hurting your foot, then the pack is just too dam heavy –  It will weigh you down, make you slow and fatigued and too immobile – this will be so too tempting to thieves or looters, who will be praying people just like you.

Using the opposite,  light-weight approach, will give you a better mental condition of feeling stronger and faster and will put more oomph in your step — it will help to keep you moving faster and for longer – you can cover more ground like this, which is possibly one of the most important goals if faced with a bug-out scenario.

Putting distance between yourself, and the danger as fast as possible it imperative.

As a Prepper, we all have a Plan B, Plan C, Plan D etc.. The same thought process should be applied to Preparing a Bug Out Bag for Survival. So think of it in stages –

Your actual Bug Out Bag is just one stage of the whole bug out procedure.

  1. It will, no doubt be, the heaviest and the more bulkiest stage of your preparation.
  2. You should also use a ‘belt base’ system of pouches as your second stage.
  3. As a final backup, a container based stage – kept in you car.


By using a system of bug out stages you are then able to prioritise the essential items over the ‘nice to have’ items.

All your essential must haves go into your main bug out bag with your back up survival equipment going into your belt pouches – a typical example would be your survival tin, knife, money, passport etc in the lightest, more mobile,  belt pack.

Then put all your “nice-to-have” items into the container base stage – kept in your car.

This method will give you the options to ditch equipment if you were forced to – or to stop and cache the container along the way.

If you feared for you supplies and life, then ditching your main rucksack would mean a faster getaway while keeping your essential survival belt base supplies and equipment.

There is also a forth stage to consider – a body stage – typically this would be and EDC keyring, a boot knife, compass, torch, survival blanket, etc, these items can be carried on your person.

In conclusion – by using this method of Preparing your Bug Out Bag for Survival, you now have options that cover situations if you were to be compromised and forced to give up you equipment and supplies.


 Snugpak Response Pak – Olive – One Size Snugpack Response Pak –  Waist Pack Nitehawk Army/Military MOLLE Waist Pack Nitehawk Army/Police Tactical Utility Combat Shoulder Pack Cartridge Bag Olive

Happy prepping folks…