What to Pack in Your Bug Out Bag

Grab Your Bug Out Bag and Go

Anyone who expects to survive a SHTF Event needs a bug out bag. A bug out bag contains what you need to survive the first three days after evacuating the comfort of your home when SHTF. You should prepare your bug out bag ahead of time, so that you have survival essentials while you get to your bunker or other secure location. What you pack in your bug out bag could make the difference between life and death, so read below to see what every survivalist should have in his bug out bag.


The Event will distinguish the prepared from the vulnerable. All preppers should make shelter their top priority. You should have a lightweight sleeping bag, or if you prefer to sleep off the ground, a hammock. Tarps should also be packed because they afford you protection from rain, sun, or more intense elements.


A lightweight tarp poncho will serve you well during your evacuation. Sunglasses, work gloves, boots, and sunscreen are also must-haves. Seasonal and regional environmental considerations should be made, since you don’t want to pack long underwear during a Dallas, TX summer.


Every bug out bag needs a good heavy duty field knife. Some folks suggest machetes, or folding saws, though that may be overkill for the ideal three day bug out bag. You should pack a compass for navigation purposes, duct tape, and a stainless steel multi-tool. Lastly, you’ll need a flashlight or lantern for travel during the night.


Protein bars can sustain you during your three days, but you may want to mix up your diet a bit. Bring a can opener, so you can bring canned tuna and other canned foods with you. You’ll want to pack water bottles and/or camelbacks in your bug out bag as well. Bring a spork, so you’re not forced to eat your canned foods with your hand.

First Aid

If you survive the event, then you’re among the lucky ones. Don’t push your luck by neglecting to pack a first aid kit in your bug out bag. Your kit should include any prescription medicine, as well as bug spray.


Pack a solar crank radio, batteries, and a solar USB port to charge your devices. Depending on the type of SHTF event you’re escaping, you may or may not be able to use your standard phone. It’s best to pack one, though some more costly bug out bags include satellite phones. Whistles and signalling flares should not be forgotten.


We can’t be sure who will survive The Event, so you should consider defense when packing your bug out bag. I suggest a handgun, ammunition, and pepper spray. Larger firearms are impractical for three days on the road, but I don’t discourage your packing anything that makes you feel more secure. Hunting rifles are better kept in your bunker or other secure location.

Balance Preparation with Practicality when Packing your Bug Out Bag

You’ll note that I haven’t included every item you think should be packed. While binoculars and fishing gear may be helpful, we should be focused on traveling to our long term shelter. Your bunker is meant to store what you need to hunt game when it’s safe to do so.

Contact me with any must-have items that should be included. You can also stock up on gear by heading to the Bunker Basics Store.

pack in your bug-out bag

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