Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Items to keep you alive in the event you must evacuate: discussions of basic Survival Kits commonly called "Bug Out Bags" or "Go Bags"

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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by 74 or more » Fri Jan 18, 2013 12:26 pm

ninja-elbow wrote:
LittleQuick wrote:Lol why I never really posted anything but my HPG Recon ^
Like people want to see my awesome tactical binder full of a map, addresses of contacts, pictures of my cat and family, important "this is me" docs, and checklists of shit to sort out. Oh, and some pants and an old hoody. 8-)
One of the things I love about ZS is that it's the best of both worlds. I can post my big, multicam, tacticool load out that I take into the woods and I can post my more practical GHB and people are stoked either way. It's fun meets practicality. Just because a kit doesn't have a bunch of ammo, guns, and what ever else, doesn't mean people can't learn from it.
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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by CryHavoc » Fri Jan 18, 2013 1:37 pm

I did a backpacking trip 2 years ago with my gear. With a 60+ pound pack, you find out what you need and what you don't need real quick when you're not in good shape.

The Backpacking Light webpage made me realize I probably could have cut my pack weight in half.

http://www.backpackinglight.com" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

A BOB is only to get you through 3 days to a week. It only needs what you can't do without for that time period.
Last edited by CryHavoc on Fri Jan 18, 2013 1:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by Boondock » Fri Jan 18, 2013 1:37 pm

ninja-elbow wrote:Like people want to see my awesome tactical binder full of a map, addresses of contacts, pictures of my cat and family, important "this is me" docs, and checklists of shit to sort out. Oh, and some pants and an old hoody. 8-)
I'm interested.

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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by 74 or more » Fri Jan 18, 2013 1:50 pm

Boondock wrote:
ninja-elbow wrote:Like people want to see my awesome tactical binder full of a map, addresses of contacts, pictures of my cat and family, important "this is me" docs, and checklists of shit to sort out. Oh, and some pants and an old hoody. 8-)
I'm interested.
Me too
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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by ninja-elbow » Fri Jan 18, 2013 3:53 pm

Maybe I'll put something up then. Been thinking about it for a few years but, honestly... most boring BOB ever. Except the 20' of rope and knife in one of them.
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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by prepper7 » Fri Jan 18, 2013 4:45 pm

I, too, am one of those who has no place to which to bug out. And I have a BOB for the exact type of thing mentioned by other posters: I might not have a tricked-out BOL, but if our house is on fire, I sure as hell am getting out! And one of the things I'll pitch out ofthe window is my BOB, complete with some food bars and water (that we can consume whilst waiting to give a statement to authorities, for transpo, etc.), FAK (for the scratches from the splintered window sill or the ankle sprained in the drop to the ground), mobile phone charger, backup HD, document pack and contact list, clothing (so we don't have to stand about in states of undress)...

And speaking of clothing, this is an hidden gem:
iron_angel wrote:<snip> That means more of a focus on things like important documents, a good few changes of clothes including at least one that won't look stupidly out of place if I have to go to court or the like...<snip>

some of people have kits filled with just-shy-of-ragbag castoffs (hey, I get it. It's expensive to allocate clothing just to live in a bag), camo or battle-rattle-y garb but no clothes that would be suitable if one dashed off to attend someone in hospital (a nice use of a BOB; "hurry, Tim's in hospital!"), had to deal with LEOs, or visit an insurance office.

And on-topic (bet you thought I'd never get there, OP), it is a balancing act that requires regular reevaluation of the likeliest threats.
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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by mystic_1 » Fri Jan 18, 2013 8:42 pm

prepper7 wrote:And on-topic (bet you thought I'd never get there, OP), it is a balancing act that requires regular reevaluation of the likeliest threats.

Speaking of balancing acts, the other part of the equation of "How much can I carry" is....

"How far do I have to carry it?"

If I'm evacing due to a house fire and there is time to do so safely, I wouldn't be shy about pitching a few hundred pounds of stuff out the window and dragging it away from the house.

If a meteor has just crushed Chicago and I need to walk to Minnesota, I'll carry much less :)

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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by prepper7 » Fri Jan 18, 2013 10:21 pm

mystic_1 wrote:If I'm evacing due to a house fire and there is time to do so safely, I wouldn't be shy about pitching a few hundred pounds of stuff out the window and dragging it away from the house.

If a meteor has just crushed Chicago and I need to walk to Minnesota, I'll carry much less :)

<mutters> wuss. :D JK. Absolutely, Mystic_1. As they say on Facebook, "it's complicated". Because of responsibilities, situations, and potential threats, some of us need a decision tree or advanced equation to answer the question.
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phil_in_cs wrote: Get your rice and beans now, when you don't have to pay for them in blood.
squinty wrote:You wear "chaps" to break a bronco, you wear "assless chaps" because civilization has collapsed and you've gone feral.
Blacksmith wrote:That is an excellent topic for another thread. You should start one about that. Really.

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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by doc savage » Sat Jan 19, 2013 12:39 am

I keep a copy of all my important docs in a fire box at my folks house a state away, along with what could be considered a full set of survival / camping / combat gear and arms in a duffel. It's a lazy emergency cache.

Due to company regs, I can't carry anything on me at work, so no EDC.

In my car, I have a scalable get-home set-up. It's a set of old M-56 field gear ( two filled canteens, butt-pack, poncho, poncho liner rolled in spaghetti straps, spare M14 bayo and entrenching tool combo w. carrier, FAK, filter-straw, trioxane and lighters, angle flashlight with an led bulb, holstered 1911 and a handful of mags, and four ammo pouches filled with energy bars, and other assorted foodstuffs. on web belt and H-harness)......also one blue sports bag. It's combat gear, yeah....but....where ever I break down, I can strip off what i don't need from the belt in seconds and trek out wearing the rest. OR, it goes in the gym bag for discrete carry out on a beefed up shoulder strap...left overs locked in the trunk until i can return. What I strip off depends on the situation and location, as well as how I wear and carry what I have.

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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by furiousjorge » Sat Jan 19, 2013 2:00 am

i live in a mid-sized city and commute/run daily errands/fun around by bicycle a good bit of the time. i have the normal 'gun nut' pocket loadout of a pistol, flashlight, and pocket knife. i have a multi-tool and a fancy phone.

on my bike i carry a fancy-schmancy bike backpack with a don't-hit-me light on it and stuffed in the bottom is a tactical toiletry kit bag with bike tools, a first aid kit, a coupla protein bars, and some barebones urban survival type stuff. i toss in a bottle of water and whatever else may be appropriate for the day (raincoat, lunch, book, etc) and i'm still under 10#. realistically, i'm never more than a super casual hour away by bike (so, maybe a 3hr walk), but my EDC is based on maybe having to hole up in a dumpster overnight or whatever until i can get back to my ammo fort. when i drive, i still take my bag and chuck it in the backseat. of course, there's more crap in the car, too.
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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by prepper7 » Sat Jan 19, 2013 2:06 am

doc savage wrote:I keep a copy of all my important docs in a fire box at my folks house a state away, along with what could be considered a full set of survival / camping / combat gear and arms in a duffel. It's a lazy sensible backup emergency cache.

Fixed that for ya. :wink:
Where will YOU Appleseed?
phil_in_cs wrote: Get your rice and beans now, when you don't have to pay for them in blood.
squinty wrote:You wear "chaps" to break a bronco, you wear "assless chaps" because civilization has collapsed and you've gone feral.
Blacksmith wrote:That is an excellent topic for another thread. You should start one about that. Really.

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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by MadMock » Sat Jan 19, 2013 7:53 am

I think everyone who is into survival, has overpacked their BOB. One of my survival instructors broke it down beautifully. He said:

Remember the rule of 3's: 3 min with severe injury, 3 hrs with extreme weather, 3 days w/o water, 3 weeks without food.

Your bag NEEDS First aid kit/trauma kit, paracord, emergency blankets, gorilla tape, fire starting equipment, knives, multi tool, latex gloves, water tablets, water, MRE. Everything else is optional.
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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by PrairieRat » Sat Jan 19, 2013 5:29 pm

My daily commute is 51mi one way. So my bag looks more like an INCH. In the winter it could easily take a week to get home.
If I'm home & must bug out, the INCH is ready, weighs about 40 lbs, mostly a heated shelter with a hunter~gatherer mindset. Just the very basics added from the granola/trail-mix school of thought.
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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by doc savage » Sat Jan 19, 2013 6:46 pm

prepper7 wrote:
doc savage wrote:I keep a copy of all my important docs in a fire box at my folks house a state away, along with what could be considered a full set of survival / camping / combat gear and arms in a duffel. It's a lazy sensible backup emergency cache.

Fixed that for ya. :wink:
thanks, I still feel I need a second cache somewhere along my route home, though.

Anyone ever bury something somewhere discrete, but not on property you own presonally? Friend's house, relatives, etc. ?

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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by Trippy » Sat Jan 19, 2013 8:39 pm

MadMock wrote:I think everyone who is into survival, has overpacked their BOB. One of my survival instructors broke it down beautifully. He said:

Remember the rule of 3's: 3 min with severe injury, 3 hrs with extreme weather, 3 days w/o water, 3 weeks without food.

Your bag NEEDS First aid kit/trauma kit, paracord, emergency blankets, gorilla tape, fire starting equipment, knives, multi tool, latex gloves, water tablets, water, MRE. Everything else is optional.
Three weeks without food: Why do you NEED and MRE? Sure, it will make you happier, but going with your Rule of 3 logic, real amounts of food just aren't necessary.

Barring nuclear war or Yellowstone blowing up, the farthest I would have to go is 3 hours/200 miles. If the nuclear power plant blows, I'll grab a few Mountain House meals from my camping gear on my way to my parents. Otherwise, my EDC cliff bars can sustain me on my trek to somewhere closer.

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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by furiousjorge » Sun Jan 20, 2013 4:39 am

well, the 3 weeks without food doesn't mean 3 weeks of optimal performance. it won't take too long before you don't function very well, which would kinda suck if you were E&Eing it over the hills and thru the woods to grandmother's house.
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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by Kutter_0311 » Sun Jan 20, 2013 7:34 am

furiousjorge wrote:well, the 3 weeks without food doesn't mean 3 weeks of optimal performance. it won't take too long before you don't function very well, which would kinda suck if you were E&Eing it over the hills and thru the woods to grandmother's house.
Damn right. If you have to bug out, you'll be burning calories. Most likely, lots of calories. I have plenty of 'on-board' calories, but tossing an MRE in there is never a bad idea. A single MRE covers a lot more than just calories, it contains matches, the entre tends to be a wet food(but the more water you drink with an MRE the better off you are, and the further it will go), and all the new ones have candy and other stuff you can use to trade or just keep morale up an keep your body hygenic, all of which makes surviving The Suck a hell of a lot easier.

Hey, if you decide you don't need it, ditch it before you leave to save weight. Not the first thing I'd ditch, though.
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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by TAB » Fri Jan 25, 2013 1:11 am

No, I'd rather carry it all... like this guy...
http://youtu.be/6qrwwM1Hgwk
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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by Tommy Tran » Fri Jan 25, 2013 6:16 pm

Im with Ninja-elbow on this stuff... the best way to hash out what you need and dont need at each level of gear is to put yourself in the situation and use it.

Something can be a mock bug-out and be discreet...

EDC (I consider EDC what is in your pockets or belt/ whatever is attached to you), easy to know what you use and dont use everyday.

GHB what you carry to and from work in the vehicle or on the bus/ taxi... This may be seasonal if not in a temperate climate, adjust as seasons change

BOB/72hr bag... I think this and GHB get mashed together, nothing wrong with that but does it really serve your needs as both?

INCH kit/bag... can you carry yours or does it go in a vehicle?

I say use each item in their roles and keep notes on what is missing or what is not needed and adjust them. Not using your gear is the #1 fail of anyone who considers themselves prepared, for the most part you'll be able to hammer through but how much better would things be if you tried and found out you didnt need something, or something was an epic fail without xyz widget...
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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by ROCK6 » Sat Jan 26, 2013 9:15 am

Bug out bags differ based on the individuals current status, situation and requirements.

A college kid with a viable plan to get to their parent’s rural home will need something more substantial…especially if there are restrictions where he lives on the college campus.

A frequent traveler would be in a similar situation to get home.

Most of us who are pretty well established and plan to “bug-in” have less need of a bug out bag. Our goal is to get home and hunker down. However, it’s good to assess the probability that you may have to evacuate your home, even if just temporary. Somebody already mentioned a house fire…that’s a major SHTF. However there are plenty of local threats if you assess your area properly: hurricane zones, tornado prone areas, earth-quake or fault line areas, areas prone to wild fires or flooding, areas with major nuclear or chemical plants within your zone of safety.

We have had two situations that forced us to “bug out” and a few where we were on the fence and ready to bug out. One was a major gas leak in our military housing area, the second was a small condo after a hurricane passed through and knocked out power. Both of those situations and out of convenience, we just loaded our bags up and drove out of the area. For the hurricane we took vacate on-leave and stayed with in-laws. The gas leak was a better test as we just when camping for a few days.

I think it’s important to still have those grab-and-go bags in your residence where they are more substantial, but you’re only hauling them to your vehicle.

We do a lot of backpacking. I can go about 100 miles over a week on most hiking trails (I’ll use the AT for a baseline) pretty comfortably. That includes food and shelter. It does require resupply for water, so water sources are critical to any long distance movement on foot. My pack-weight is between 35-40 pounds and only includes a pistol and ne reload; so no combat load-weight included. I’ve done my share of humping 90+pound packs on road-marches and it’s not fun; those pack-weights will only get hauled to my truck parked out front.

Having different bag for different needs make sense; having a smaller pack readily available is better than a massive INCH or BOB sitting in a closet at home makes more sense for most. Yes, I have a massif Kifaru EMR with piggy-backed Scout loaded for bear…mostly my winter BOB, but I have much smaller day bags for the truck and bugging home. Determine your most probably scenarios and plan a common-sense approach with what you really need; and then do a little practicing and some drills to flush it out.

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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by tookieblueeyes » Sat Jan 26, 2013 12:16 pm

I realized the same dilemma a couple of years ago and after a lot of thought, some research and some field time I put together what I call a "minimal kit" which is just a hunters Real Tree Fieldline Pro Series harnessed waist pack with a couple of smaller pouches attached to the Molle webbing the pack has provided.

This new revised "minimal kit" doesn't necessarily have to be rethought or repacked for spring, summer, fall and winter. With the exception of maybe 2 or 3 items there is no switching out the gear for the season every time the season changes.

In the "minimal kit" I packed the MOST IMPORTANT essentials for any survival situation be it getting home after traffic backs up in a disaster, getting from point A to BOL B, or getting lost on a expiratory scout, hike or hunting trip.

Basically my thought process behind my "minimal kit" was... Cowboys, outlaws, mountaineers, trappers, travelers and pioneers didn't carry massive 65L packs on their backs when they were moving around and even though some did have a pack mule that carried homesteading essentials you very rarely saw one with the basic traveling man/woman. The idea being that if cowboys and outlaws could blow out of town heading for the next with nothing but a canteen, a bed roll, their firearms, saddlebags toting ammo, coffee, tobacco, jerky and hard tack, a duster or jacket of some kind and whatever they were wearing on top of the saddle they were riding on... then I sure didn't need a whole shit load of gear to get through 2 or 3 days!

In my "minimal kit" I just cover the true essentials for life. I don't haul around a big ass sleeping bag, bag liner, Katydine water purification system and all the other garb others "THINK" they need in order to survive a bug out or get home situation.

Really, all you need is a way to carry water, a way to purify water you collect on the trail be it water purification tablets, clorox, iodine, potassium permanganate, or a way to boil water, a first aid kit, a fire kit, paracord, and a little food (I personally carry oatmeal, clif bars, chicken & beef bullion cubes, coffee, tea and other small, dried, compact and easily prepared food items. I also carry warm drinks like tea and coffee. I don't feel I need to eat like a king on the run! I just need to eat what will sustain me and what will replace minerals, vitamins, and other essential things within my body such as sugars and salts. Of course I always carry TP and there are some other items like Binoculars, a GPS, Plastic bag, rain poncho, survival blanket and some playing cards which are not necessarily necessary but are useful. A jacket, a thermal top and a skull cap are 3 examples of things that are switched around given the season.

Everything you carry weighs up. Ounces equals pounds. And though my own experiences I have noted that the more one carries the more worn out they get and that's when the likelihood of injury and exhaustion occur. Heavier packs also increase the chances of more serious injuries occurring, like twisted ankles and bad falls, both from the sheer weight of the pack and the awkwardness of it, as well as the exhaustion that comes from packing around such a heavy load.

My philosophy... carry only what you need and leave the bullshit behind, move faster and safer and if you can't find more than 1 use for a piece of gear, it's not worth carrying around. Everyone believes different though. What is right for me isn't right for everyone.
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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by maine1 » Sat Jan 26, 2013 7:55 pm

tookieblueeyes wrote:I realized the same dilemma a couple of years ago and after a lot of thought, some research and some field time I put together what I call a "minimal kit" which is just a hunters Real Tree Fieldline Pro Series harnessed waist pack with a couple of smaller pouches attached to the Molle webbing the pack has provided.

This new revised "minimal kit" doesn't necessarily have to be rethought or repacked for spring, summer, fall and winter. With the exception of maybe 2 or 3 items there is no switching out the gear for the season every time the season changes.

In the "minimal kit" I packed the MOST IMPORTANT essentials for any survival situation be it getting home after traffic backs up in a disaster, getting from point A to BOL B, or getting lost on a expiratory scout, hike or hunting trip.

Basically my thought process behind my "minimal kit" was... Cowboys, outlaws, mountaineers, trappers, travelers and pioneers didn't carry massive 65L packs on their backs when they were moving around and even though some did have a pack mule that carried homesteading essentials you very rarely saw one with the basic traveling man/woman. The idea being that if cowboys and outlaws could blow out of town heading for the next with nothing but a canteen, a bed roll, their firearms, saddlebags toting ammo, coffee, tobacco, jerky and hard tack, a duster or jacket of some kind and whatever they were wearing on top of the saddle they were riding on... then I sure didn't need a whole shit load of gear to get through 2 or 3 days!

In my "minimal kit" I just cover the true essentials for life. I don't haul around a big ass sleeping bag, bag liner, Katydine water purification system and all the other garb others "THINK" they need in order to survive a bug out or get home situation.

Really, all you need is a way to carry water, a way to purify water you collect on the trail be it water purification tablets, clorox, iodine, potassium permanganate, or a way to boil water, a first aid kit, a fire kit, paracord, and a little food (I personally carry oatmeal, clif bars, chicken & beef bullion cubes, coffee, tea and other small, dried, compact and easily prepared food items. I also carry warm drinks like tea and coffee. I don't feel I need to eat like a king on the run! I just need to eat what will sustain me and what will replace minerals, vitamins, and other essential things within my body such as sugars and salts. Of course I always carry TP and there are some other items like Binoculars, a GPS, Plastic bag, rain poncho, survival blanket and some playing cards which are not necessarily necessary but are useful. A jacket, a thermal top and a skull cap are 3 examples of things that are switched around given the season.

Everything you carry weighs up. Ounces equals pounds. And though my own experiences I have noted that the more one carries the more worn out they get and that's when the likelihood of injury and exhaustion occur. Heavier packs also increase the chances of more serious injuries occurring, like twisted ankles and bad falls, both from the sheer weight of the pack and the awkwardness of it, as well as the exhaustion that comes from packing around such a heavy load.

My philosophy... carry only what you need and leave the bullshit behind, move faster and safer and if you can't find more than 1 use for a piece of gear, it's not worth carrying around. Everyone believes different though. What is right for me isn't right for everyone.


A big hell yes to this^.

The eastern longhunters, trappers, Ben Lilley, Hugh Glass and others survived a lot tougher times with a lot less gear.
How can we do less? Granted, in Ben and Hughs cases,. they had years of experience, knowledge and skills earned by life on the trail- not a lot of those guys around like there used to be. Plus a big pair of BALLS to survive a grizzly attack, and be ELATED by finding his knife, flint and steel. basics, REAL tools, make the diference in my experience.


Going back to the simple way myself.

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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by Tommy Tran » Mon Jan 28, 2013 11:37 am

Rock6 I agree with finding your true needs. a lot of BOB toting folks are under the impression they will playout in some adventure storyline and while most of us here would be just fine in that situation, the reality being that it wont be glamorous. Most here have jobs and chances are whatever you are toting will serve you as a GHB. It will be you walkin home whether that be on the street with everyone one else blending in but slipping away to have a snack and a drink, or overlanding it if in a rural setting. How you get home would be determined by what are likely disasters in your area and plan accordingly for those routes.

Simplifying is always good since it generally lightens your load... I consider my GHB my second layer, my edc on my person is my first layer. I believe in the layering system as it basically increases your comfort and capability when you have the layers but you arent SOL if you have to drop a layer.

Again, actually using your gear in its intended role is very helpful in determining what you need and dont need... and actually doing the mileage will tell you if your bag has heavy stuff that isnt necessary.
phil_in_cs wrote:well, I can guarantee you it won't over penetrate. It has to penetrate before it can over penetrate....
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Re: Realizing that you never will carry all of this stuff

Post by tookieblueeyes » Mon Jan 28, 2013 6:53 pm

maine1 wrote: A big hell yes to this^.

The eastern longhunters, trappers, Ben Lilley, Hugh Glass and others survived a lot tougher times with a lot less gear.
How can we do less? Granted, in Ben and Hughs cases,. they had years of experience, knowledge and skills earned by life on the trail- not a lot of those guys around like there used to be. Plus a big pair of BALLS to survive a grizzly attack, and be ELATED by finding his knife, flint and steel. basics, REAL tools, make the diference in my experience.


Going back to the simple way myself.
EXACTLY! Ben Lilley and Hugh Glass are great examples the the "less is more" ideal. :shock:

I have been watching videos on peoples GHB/BOB for years and reading their posts as they list everything they are carrying on their backs and sometimes it just seems completely ridiculous what people "think" they need in order to survive 2-3 days! I mean damn! If you are going to pack that much garbage, half of which you will never really pull out and use, then you may as well strap a damn recliner and a mini fridge to your ass! Sometimes some peoples GHB/BOB looks more like it's packed for a full on camping trip with a 4-6 mile hike in to the campsite rather than a true E&E/GH/BO bag!

For those who have a full internal or external frame pack, 65L or even a 55L, and it's packed to the gills with everything you can imagine... what happens if you are confronted on the journey by thieves, thugs or threats? Are you going to be able to move cat like with that pack on your back and pull a successful E&E? And if you use a firearm against these lone wolves, or small groups, how much attention are you going to draw to yourself when you do fire off that round? How many more thieves and thugs are you going to attract?And what if the opposition has a firearm? Can you tuck and roll to avoid a bullet to the balls? And then with that 50 plus pound pack on your back are you going to escape running unseen through the alleys and trees up hills and down draws? Or are you going to find yourself sweating like a screwed pig and maybe tumbling down the trail rolling like stone and creating a rock slide in your wake? A big full pack is kind of cumbersome and uncomfortable. It can also stick out like a sore thumb to threats looking to roll you for whatever you got that they don't.

My thought is that a smaller pack with a lighter load allows for a little more agility and a lot less weight to cause exhaustion before I get to where I am going.

I can make do with a minimal kit and get by just fine. I have done several "dry" runs using the minimal kit with great success in comparison to the "dry" runs I have done with the more popular "big" BOB. It is the minimal kit that I will be using when I do my winter MBO entry this season as well, so if anyone is dying to know how that works out... keep your eyes out for the entry and you can see for yourself that sometimes, less is better.
Learning is an ongoing process.

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