Recent Posts

Friday, 3 October 2014

Bug Out Bags and Bug Out Places

Many Catholics I know across the US, from coast to coast, have bought what they think are safe places.

Safe havens will be rare and depend on supporting communities. I was talking with someone about being self-sufficient today. Very few families are ready. They need to be ready now.

Last Christmas, some friends of mine have a mother who bought them all bug-out bags as Christmas presents.

After some thought and prayer, here are my suggestions with the help of some sites.

First of all, if you are in the country in what you consider is a safe haven, have up to six months provisions, including fuel and food.

Second, make sure you have a BOB with Catholic things added, like your sacramental documents, holy water, rosary, crucifix, breviary, missal, Bible.

Here are some suggestions from

1. Water

It should go without saying that water is a survival basic for any situation. In a survival situation water quickly becomes the most precious commodity.
1 Liter per day per person is really the bare minimum. So your 3 day Bug Out Bag should have at least 3 liters of water.
To expand your capability or survive longer than a couple of days you will need a water purification system. This can be as simple as boiling water and iodine tablets, or a serious water filter.

2. Food

Backpack Meals
Backpack Meals
For a 3 Day Bug Out Bag Backpack Meals and Energy Bars can be sufficient. Back pack meals are freeze dried meals that you just add boiling water to. They are light weight and last a long time.
Obviously you will need a longer term food solution in any type of wide area catastrophe, but for your basic Bug Out Bag backpack meals are a good set up.

3. Clothing

Your Bug Out Bag clothes should be similar to what you would pack for a weekend backpacking trip.
  • A pair of sturdy boots or shoes
  • A pair of long pants (preferably not blue jeans)
  • 2 Pairs of socks (preferably not cotton)
  • 2 Shirts (Maybe 1 long sleeve and 1 short sleeve for layering)
  • A Jacket that is both warm and protection from rain
  • Warm long underwear of some kind
  • A hat
  • A Bandana (30 Uses for a Bandana)
This list could go on for a while and many people would never dream of leaving their Bug Out Bag without twice that much, but in a pinch that set up could get you by for 3 days.
Be sure to plan for the weather in your area: Do You have Seasonal Clothes in Your Bug Out Bag

4. Shelter

Tarp Tent
They Don't have a ground tarp...
If you are going to survive for 3 days you are going to need protection from the elements and a warm dry place to sleep. You need at least:
  1. Some type of tent or tarp and a way to set it up
  2. A ground tarp for underneath your shelter to stay dry  or a sleeping pad (Never underestimate the importance of this)
  3. Some type of Bedroll, preferably a good sleeping bag.

5. First Aid Kit

Trying to cover everything you need in your Bug Out Bag First Aid Kit is another article entirely to itself, probably several more. I won’t try to cover it because I would surely leave something out.
What I will do is recommend that you build your own First Aid Kit instead of buying one of those prepackaged first aid kits that claim to have 1001 things to get you through any emergency. While some are ok, in my experience these types of kits are usually filled with a lot of stuff you are unlikely to need and not enough of the things you will probably need a lot of.
Plus, building your own first aid kit gives you an intimate knowledge of what it contains and how to use it. How many people buy one of those pre-made set ups and just assume they are prepared because there’s so much crap in it there must be what I need? Bad Idea.

6. Basic Gear

MatchesBasic Gear sounds repetitive (what have I been talking about?) but it is my category for the things you absolutely cannot live without but don’t really fit well into another category. Many survivalists will not like this list because it is not exhaustive by any means, but again I will say: It will be enough to get you by for a couple of days.
Rain Gear – at least 2 ways to stay dry in the rain. Poncho and Coat are good coupled with your Tent/Shelter
Fire – A bare minimum of 3 different ways to make fire. I wrote more about this here:Do You have 5 Ways to Make Fire? With that you can get a flame but you will have to actually build the fire up too: 5 Ideas for Fire Tender.
You’re also going to need something to cut your firewood and a knife uses too much energy long term: Choosing the Best Survival Chainsaw
Cooking – Bare minimum here is a small pot/large cup to boil water in for both drinking and freeze dried meals. A small backpacking stove and fuel are better.
Light – At least 2 dependable flashlights and a backup set of batteries for each.
Survival Knife – The most used and most versatile tool in your Bug Out Bag is yoursurvival knife.  I wrote more about this here:  7 Things You Should Consider before Choosing Your Survival Knife

7. Weapons

Glock 19The fact of the matter is you are might be dealing with a “Without Rule of Law” situation, or close to it, and people are likely to do crazy things. Being prepared to defend yourself is part of the survivalist mindset.
Obviously a firearm of some sort is best for this. (Though not in all situations) I will not go into specifics about what type of gun you should bring because that is hotly debated and really a personal choice. Take what is comfortable to you.
Outside of guns your survival knife could be used as weapon if you had to. Also something as simple as a big walking stick or club can be a strong deterrent for bad guys. It’s all about giving yourself options.
Time for hesitating about these BOBs is over!
Here are some suggestions for bags.


The Sandpiper


The sandpiper is made of polyester, has the capacity to carry enough gear for several days, contains multiple compression loops, tie downs and attachment points for equipment and accessories. This bag measures 26″ long 15.5″ wide 10.5″ deep.
Average Rating: 

The Tactical Military MOLLE


The Molle is made of durable 600 D nylon material. It’s easy to organize with one large compartment and six smaller compartments. This bag is MOLLE strap and PALS compatible, is 20″ x 11.5″ x 11″ plus it can expand another 3″, has shoulder straps and a belt that can be stowed for protection during flights.
Average Rating: 

The Spec-Ops T.H.E Pack


The Spec-Ops T.H.E Pack is made from super durable 1000D Cordura Nylon fabric (by far the toughest 1000D nylon fabric on the market today). Has huge YKK #10 zippers on main compartment and large outer pockets. Double Layer Pack Top eliminates stress failure associated with excessive use of carry/drag handle. CAPACITY: 2550 cubic inches.
Average Rating: 

The 511 Rush


The 5.11 Rush 24 Pack is a full-size day pack with a 20″H x 12.5″L x 8″D (2,000 cu in) main compartment and numerous smaller individual pockets and pouches, several with zipper closures. This pack features adjustable, dual density closed-cell foam shoulder straps with Duraflex(TM) hardware.
Average Rating: 

The Maxpedition Vulture


This pack is made of nylon. The main compartment is 20.5″(H) x 16″(W) x 7.5″(D) and the bag has a total capacity of 2810 It has a 1″ Sternum Strap, and a 2″ Integrated Belt. The Maxpedition has a solid nylon back, but still has the mesh on the straps. It carries well, even over long distances.
Average Rating: 

The Condor Three Day Assault Pack


The Condor has a large load cargo capacity compartment with separate pocket to fit up to two 3L hydration bladders, BOlive Draby contour shoulder straps with D-Ring for equipment attachment, sternum starp and waist belt, and External side compression straps. It has a heavy-duty carry and drag handle, two double zipper pulls on the main compartment for easy access, and an individual foam pad back panel for extra comfort and maximum airflow.
Average Rating: 

Next post will be on BOPs.