I'd appreciate any suggestions.
My main problem right now is that I need to shed about 10 pounds from the total weight.
With water the whole kit is about 35lbs. (* see my edit below)
While around 30lbs is about right for my weight (based on the bag = 1/4 body weight equation), I'm not strong enough to realistically carry that well for distances so around 25lbs is better. There's still room left in the bag, but I can't physically carry more.
edit 2 (08/28/08):
I've calculated all the weight as accurately as I could (added below). I don't think I had correctly calculated the prior weight since my scale seems wonky. The prior weight was probably closer to 32-35lbs WITHOUT water. See my post here for an update on my BOB stategy.
edit 1: I've received much helpful advice on reducing weight and additional items to consider, thanks.
Before I show the BOB pics and list contents I thought it would help to have some context for my choices since BOBs are kind of personally tailored:
SOME REASONING BEHIND THE ITEMS:
The bag is packed primarily for a car evac situation since we don't yet have the resources needed for a full foot evac (backpack tent or bivy, backpack stove, meal packages, etc.). The main provisions for shelter, food and water are in the camping supplies (listed briefly below). The BOB serves mostly to take care of health and hygiene needs, along with travel info and basic repairs.
the following are in the camping gear for car evac:
- tent + stakes + ropes + mallets
sleeping bags + air mattress
stove + fuel
cooking items (pots, dishes, dish cleaning0
food items (beans, pasta, rice, peanut butter, etc. - will be packed from storage shelf in kitchen)
utility bag + work gloves
battery powered lanterns + coffee can of batteries
5 gal. gas container kept in car (Another 5 gal. container is kept in my bf's car. Time allowing we'd grab that too.)
7 gal. water container, filled
2 gal. water container, filled, kept in car (Another 2 gal. container is kept in my bf's car. Time allowing we'd grab that too.)
While the bag is made primarily for car bug out, I also tried as best I could to allow for the possibility of a grab-and-go scenario where there's no time to pack the car, or a scenario where we either have to abandon the car or take a day trip by foot away from the car camp. Which is why, for example, a fleece roll is included even though sleeping bags are in the camping gear, and an extra space blanket and stakes are included though there is a tent in the camping gear. Despite our current lack of resources I didn't want to be entirely screwed without the car.
Keeping in mind we could be bugging out for over a month, I've tried to pack 2-4 weeks worth of OTC meds and toiletries. Those items can not only be hard to find in a new area or PAW, but also be be pricey and the cost of replenishing them can add up quickly. I'd rather use my stash money on food, water and shelter. Most of the items in the FAK wouldn't be taken every single day so the supply for some items may last more than a month.
Clothing is a particular challenge for me because temperatures can change 40-50 degrees in a day in the desert (80 day / 30 night), depending on the time of year and altitude. That means that even in warm seasons here I need some cold weather clothing in the event that we have to evacuate to a higher altitude or a colder climate state.
I may reduce some of the quantities or transfer a few of the items to my bf's bag (my bugout partner) when he's completed his own BOB. For now I leaned on the conservative side and made my independent of his for the most part.
My main focus for the bag is comfort and health over minimalism, which is why it's heavy on the hygiene and first aid even though a full FAK will be in my bf's bag. In addition to being a concession to some health issues I have, my reasoning there is that a SHTF situation is by nature very UNcomfortable. Anything I can do to make myself feel more comfortable will likely help my morale and mental capability, thereby helping my survival.
Ok, now that that's out of the way, the next post shows the bag. Items in red are items I'm saving up for or in the process of acquiring.
I've put this intro in a separate post from the BOB details to try to make the thread easier to read. Even so, this is a mutha-long scroll because I just couldn't figure out how to include pics and lists in a shorter format. Huge thanks in advance to those who bother to read it. I'd appreciate any feedback you have.
edit: added formatting for emphasis and clarity, updates