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Bug Out Bag / Prepper Setup / Survival-based UL kit and philosophy
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Ed Barkowski
Bug Out Bag / Prepper Setup / Survival-based UL kit and philosophy on 10/04/2013 19:53:22 MDT Print View

Disclosure: In the interest of max exposure and feedback, I'm intentionally posting the following under 'gear' - not 'chaff' - expecting some may not agree. Before filing this away as propaganda, paranoia or political, first THINK and please know that I have loved and counted on this community for going on 8 years. It is based purely in our mutual adoration and study of all things backpacking. No zombies, for goodness sake. So, with respect to all and absolutely no agenda or premise of fear or fringe theory:

Assuming you have any remote interest or knowledge of the Prepper Mindset...

1. What, in your opinion, is the very BEST PACK for use in a "Bug Out Bag" setup?
(Are materials like Dyneema or 'Trishield Grid'* a must - for long term durability - or not?)
2. What is the optimal volume for venturing into the unknown?
(Pack for at 'overnight', 'extended weekend' or 'thru hike' experience?)
3. What [lightweight / ultralight] items would you choose as essentials if you thought there was a chance your 1, 2 or 3-day setup may turn into a long-term gear and survival kit? (Clean water, ability to hunt + gather, traditional crossovers from frontier ways?)
4. What else??? (I've read thousands of pages on BPL and hundreds on 'Prepper' sites, but I've never seen any good examples of folks bringing the two together in interesting or comprehensive ways. We lightweight lovers surely get a few kicks edging on that survival instinct now and then. Resourcefulness seems critical to hiking with less, and it is undoubtedly needed to keep one's life [or that of loved ones] afloat if options of relative luxury dwindle.)


* Trishield Grid = Seems to be proprietary to Lowe Alpine and a very legitimate contender for the best strength : weight. Tests conducted by L.A. yielded results more impressive than Dyneema's. Comments? I don't own any Lowe Alpine packs, so I can't say. Does anyone have first hand knowledge of this material's tenacity?

Edited by edbarkowski on 10/04/2013 21:18:38 MDT.

just Justin Whitson
Re: Bug Out Bag / Prepper Setup / Survival-based UL kit and philosophy on 10/04/2013 22:58:28 MDT Print View

Hi Ed, this is a topic and issue that i have given a good amount of thought to. I've come to the conclusion that long term survival and UL while not opposite are somewhat exclusive of each other. I think, relatively light, is the best that most could realistically hope for. Now, if you're Wim Hoff, a long time Tibetan Monk, Yeshua, Cody Lundin, or the like, then you probably could get away with UL and being comfortable.

I will answer more specifically later, but alas, i have to wake up early for work tomorrow.

I will just somewhat briefly add, that besides my and my wife's 70 Liter Jam backpacks, we also have a somewhat light weight bicycle trailer, which is what i would put the heavier essentials in, like a shovel, my fiskars wood splitting axe, extra insulation (wool/alpaca throws), extra food/water, etc. This trailer can be both pushed and pulled at the same time, because i have a harness i can hook up to it, and if we're going up a hill or what not, my wife could either push while i pull or vice versa.

I will also generally add, i'm not the typical "prepper" as far as i can tell. I'm not stocking up on guns, ammo, etc, and i don't live my life in fear whatsoever and while i think about this topic some i mostly live in the present. Yet, i've always been keenly intuitive and for a long time aware of the bigger pictures, and knowing from experience that the law of like attracts and begets like is a fundamental universal law built into all levels of reality physical and nonphysical, i know the US is due for a collapse for she has continually put out that which is destructive and limiting in nature in relation to others and self, and eventually this will come back around in concentrated form.

It's interesting how a percentage of NDE accounts involve people being given or shown info about major collapse and short term major challenges, testing, and intense suffering, but also of rebuilding and of golden era of universal compassion, respect for each other and nature, and a society free of all the various ills and imbalances and immense emotional and spiritual suffering that is so common place now. A truly happy and at peace humanity. I've been given glimpses of that in various ways also, and i really, really, really look forward to that.

When i was a little kid of 4, and asked what i wanted to be when i grew up, i told my parents quite insistently that i wanted to be, and would be, a doctor to everyone, everywhere and that i would always be there for anyone. I did not literally want to be a "doctor" but rather, i was *VERY* aware of and sensitive to the suffering of those around me and of the world in general, and all i could think about was alleviating that in some way because it quite literally hurt. My dad, a musician, was very touched by the spirit of compassion in this message, and wrote a song about it called "Dr. Everywhere"

"I had a talk with my son, i asked him when you grow up... what is that you wanna do, you wanna be?

I see you draw pretty fine, straighter than mine, you sing the songs that you hear, you got a good ear, tell me what's on your mind?

He said, 'Dad, i wanna be a doctor, doctor to everyone, i'll always be there, i'll be everywhere..'
Dr. Everywhere, Dr. Everywhere, Dr. Everywhere., Dr. Everywhere..

He talked of pain in this world, all the people that hurt, 'Daddy.. whose gonna care, show some concern..'

And it brought tears to my eyes, to see this 4 year old try to understand that we all, have so much to learn.. and it's time we begin.

Chorus again/then ends."

Red sky lullabies.

Edited by ArcturusBear on 10/04/2013 22:59:42 MDT.

Steven Diogenes
(stevenn) - F
:) on 10/05/2013 00:10:21 MDT Print View

Thanks for sharing that, Justin :)

Daniel Pittman
(pitsy) - M

Locale: Central Texas
Re: Bug Out Bag / Prepper Setup / Survival-based UL kit and philosophy on 10/05/2013 00:53:50 MDT Print View

Nah, it's legit to post this in Gear.

Primarily, you will need to consider more durable items, and nothing that runs out. You will be able to resupply, but I think you'll want to avoid most population centers because shit's gonna hit the fan when the grid goes down.

One thing you know you'll need is clean water to drink. Sawyer filters are the best. Nothing to replace, easy to clean, very long life. Just don't let them freeze.

Food. You need dense calories, and easy-cook or no-cook is best. You'll need to know how to hunt and trap, and forage.

Shelter. Stealth is key. Need to be able to move quickly.

All this is pointing my opinion in the direction of thru-hiking gear. You'll be travelling for a while to get to your hunker-down spot. Travel light and fast. Once you get there, you can reassess the situation and transition to long term survival.

The details of your kit might be dictated by where you're bugging out from, and where you plan to hunker down.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Bug Out Bag / Prepper Setup / Survival-based UL kit and philosophy on 10/05/2013 06:15:46 MDT Print View

What they said, thru-hiker gear plus some more.

1. Golite jam
2. 3000 cubic inches
3 and 4.

1. Medical- long term kit
2. Shelter- car you can sleep in, tarp/bug netting
3. Fire- lighter, matches, flint/striker
4. Hydration- filter, containers, chlorine bleach drops, aqua mira drops
5. Communication- HAM radio, PLB, cell phone, am/fm radio
6. Navigation- compass, gps, maps of area, headlamp and extra batteries
7. Nutrition- no cook foods, simple cook foods on woodstove, multivitamin
8. Insulation- for expected lows over long term
9. Sun Protection- use clothing and shelter
10. Tools- bigger knife, compact saw, hunting equipment, solar charger

P.S. the car won't fit in the pack.

Edited by jshann on 10/05/2013 06:27:02 MDT.

spelt with a t
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
Re: Bug Out Bag / Prepper Setup / Survival-based UL kit and philosophy on 10/05/2013 09:00:18 MDT Print View

I think this depends a LOT on your location and what disaster you are preparing for. Bug-out/prepper stuff seems always aimed at, like, total collapse of civilization kinda scenarios. Personally I feel like it's much more practical to look at the potential for natural disasters where you live and tailor your emergency kit (note the wording) accordingly. This is less fun than imagining yourself fleeing to Canada or Mexico on foot, but probably more likely to be useful.

Ken T.
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: All up in there
Re: Bug Out Bag / Prepper Setup / Survival-based UL kit and philosophy on 10/05/2013 09:12:07 MDT Print View

I keep enough in the car so that I can walk home the 18 miles if needed. Spending one night out. I'm only concerned about natural disasters. Earthquakes and Tsunamis being the big two with wildfire right behind. Makes a good use for that bomber, heavyweight gear we have around.

Ian B.

Locale: PNW
Re: Bug Out Bag / Prepper Setup / Survival-based UL kit and philosophy on 10/05/2013 09:23:22 MDT Print View

1. I'm not saying that a ULA pack is the "best" but if they can survive a triple-crown, then it's good enough for bug out purposes. My Ohm 2.0 is pretty large and even when I'm geared up for 20* weather, I have room to spare. If I were to get a pack specifically for this purpose, I'd probably look at a circuit or catalyst so I could haul a lot of water and food.

2. To me this is like asking "what's the optimal volume for UL backpacking?" I'd gather all of the gear you intend to carry and then make a pack decision based on that.

3. .22lr rifle, an ESSE-5 or comparable knife, a lightweight saw, and a lightweight hatchet. Surviving off the land is a very short term solution as millions of other Americans will try to do the same thing; deer and other natural resources will be hunted to near extinction within a year. I'm not going to go too far into the weeds as far as firearms for personal safety but if you're traveling with a group, variety is the spice of life; mix it up with shotguns, 9mm's, 5.56 rifles, and again, .22lr because you can carry 1000s of rounds very easily. If I could only carry one gun from my arsenal, it'd be a .22lr.

4. A multitude of tarps. I'd rely on insulation first and fire/stoves as a distant second for warmth. Synthetic insulation would probably be worth the weight penalty in this scenario. +1 Sawyer but you'll be SOL in the winter. I'd pack a ti pot which is at least 1.3 liters for boiling/sterilizing water. I'd pack several bottles of Aqua Mira. Multiple fire sources. Quality compass. Few electronics and of those, ones which will work with AA or AAA batteries. Multiple levels of FAK; keep a large one in your ruck and a smaller one on your person. A basic survival kit which is always in your pocket in case you are ever separated from your ruck.

I had to live through the January 1997 ice storm in NY, responded to WTC as a first responder, and was on deck to respond to Katrina. I think prepping has a stigma attached to it because there are some super-freaks who are spokesmen for it but if you study history, I think this is a good idea.

Edited by IDBLOOM on 10/05/2013 09:26:35 MDT.

. .
(RogerDodger) - F

Locale: (...)
... on 10/05/2013 10:14:05 MDT Print View


Edited by RogerDodger on 07/07/2015 09:46:24 MDT.

Tim Zen
(asdzxc57) - F

Locale: MI
Re: Bug Out Bag / Prepper Setup / Survival-based UL kit and philosophy on 10/05/2013 11:43:16 MDT Print View

What exactly are you bugging from and where do you propose to bug to?

Hypothetically, if you are alone walking away from an event and three people with guns see your gear, well then what?

. .
(RogerDodger) - F

Locale: (...)
... on 10/05/2013 14:38:10 MDT Print View


Edited by RogerDodger on 07/07/2015 09:45:40 MDT.

Ed Barkowski
Good reasoning on 10/05/2013 18:51:54 MDT Print View

A big THANK YOU to all those who have posted. I appreciate your thoughts immensely and further appreciate there being no hard feelings about the subject being raised where and how it was.

As some background, my own scenario is this: Rural Colorado, about 2 hours from Denver (or much else I'd consider a population center). The job allows me to dress as I please and - if I so desired - bring a full pack to work with little or no difficulty or harassment.

Though I wouldn't necessarily feel the need or want to flee in the wake of any large scale disaster or domino collapse, I know that many of you would want or require that option. So, much of this thread is for those folks. But I can't help be intrigued by the opinions on specific gear pieces others would suggest and why. My SHTF kit may not be AS needed as that of those living in fragile or volatile places, but I'm still into the idea of reasonable [ultralight style] readiness. As someone who has felt the ease, reward and infatuation that accompanies packing light, I can't help but build my dream kit (first in mind, then in practice).

Some thoughts from you I'll echo:

Stealth existence would probably be imperative during the onset of anything involving violence or hysteria. For this, I immediately think bivy (camo, black, etc), little to no cooking or fire (again - dense calories that don't require heat), insulating layers (for dear life), solar charger accommodating AA [and maybe AAA] Eneloop batteries, a select few electronics that may need powering (Light: Zebralight - hands down! Radio: Kaito KA1103), Knife: Large Ka-Bar for batoning, Gun: [22] Marlin model 60, and so on.

If things were to settle down (or never escalate in the first place), mobility would be unnecessary and one's bug out kit could shrink, once again, to a fanny pack's worth of gear. Communal living would regain popularity, I'd guess, as it's 10x harder to strike out on one's own. Local farms may become the centerpieces to such communities.

And as for the pack: Jam is a good suggestion for its durability and affordability. Mountain Laurel and Gossamer Gear [and the like] are probably shoe-ins for their use of tough fabrics [and their outstanding customer service]. Longevity is everything - bugging out or not. Not many of us have money to throw at a new pack every season, so robustness is key.

I trailed off. So much to think about.

MANY THANKS for your words. Keep them coming!!

Edited by edbarkowski on 10/05/2013 22:29:19 MDT.

just Justin Whitson
Re: Re: Re: Bug Out Bag / Prepper Setup / Survival-based UL kit and philosophy on 10/05/2013 18:55:36 MDT Print View

Some points before i go into specifics of preparations relating to gear etc.

Rodger Dodger, your list is good, but you really should add Solar events to that list. Much of the worlds electrical grid system, especially North America's, is pretty fragile. If we have another Carrington like event, say goodbye to electricity for many years, and once that electricity goes down, is when things are going to get very rough especially in populous areas.

We just had a fairly unusually strong Solar event a few days ago. Red Auroras were seen not that far from the equator (around 45 degree latitudes or so). Visible red auroras not close to the Poles are fairly rare and signify very intense charging of and reaction with the atmosphere due to strong Solar outbursts.

I'm not sure how much i should or should not talk about some of my experiences--especially on a forum with so many strongly and predominantly left brain types. I want to warn people, but i also don't want to create fear, and so i feel kind of stuck between a rock and a hard place. A few brief summaries. I'm very much watching the Sun-especially during this Solar Maximum because though it has for the most part been unusually quiet for a Solar Maximum some of the info i've been given relates to the Sun and to unusual activity as being a possibility or probability.

I've been meditating for many years. Sometime during meditation, i receive information that i don't consciously generate. I've had numerous experiences were this information has been verified beyond coincidence, like for example, some future oriented stuff. I also have dreams like this occasionally. My wife has these kind of experiences too, and has experienced a lot of verification of information she couldn't have possibly known consciously. I've had multiple of these kinds of experiences over many years and i've learned to trust this more or less (i always try to keep a mindset of "open minded but skeptical").

When i was younger, i was shown "red skies". I had no idea what that meant (took me years to fully figure out). During a meditation one time, i asked about any future probable collapse and had like a waking dream (it was a very deep meditation) of a very active and explosive Sun. I eventually figured out the Red skies relates to the Sun and unusually intense Solar activity. Both my wife and i have had many dreams relating to this and to an unusually powerful Solar cycle. Right now, i kind of think we are experiencing the calm before the storm.

That recent Solar storm though, was just a small taste of what's to come. As to exactly when a Solar event will knock out much of the electrical grid, i don't know, i'm not even very sure it will even be this Solar Max, but if i was a betting man, i would probably say so. In any case, the future is somewhat fluid and one can only talk in terms of greater or lesser probabilities for different time frames. I do think and get the sense that this is a high probability, but again as to exact times, i've not been given that info except to be told, i will have some heads up when it's necessary.

I doubt most here will take any of the above seriously on a conscious level, but hopefully it plants some good subconscious seeds for when the time comes. The more of those of us with good hearts, good intentions, and good survival skills or awareness, the better off we all will be as a species in the rebuilding. There is no "end of the world" here, just another collapse as has happened to many societies recent and well recorded and those ancient and less well recorded.

There is nothing to fear, when you realize that you are much more than your physical body, and that you, the real you, cannot be killed or ended (though starving kind of sucks, and watching ones loved ones suffer sucks too). Even if that wasn't true, well we all die anyways, so, so what to exactly when and exactly how we go. Either way you cut it, death isn't a big deal. Those who get to go, in some ways will be the lucky ones. We who stay will have a challenging period ahead of us, but hopefully with the very real potential to finally create a truly civilized civilization out of the ashes of the old.

I know a lot of the above will sound very "new agey", and i can't fault that interpretation, but suffice it to say, if you knew me in person you would realize i'm a lot less new agey than the above seems to imply.

. .
(RogerDodger) - F

Locale: (...)
... on 10/05/2013 19:40:17 MDT Print View


Edited by RogerDodger on 07/07/2015 09:48:14 MDT.

just Justin Whitson
Re: Re: Re: Re: Bug Out Bag / Prepper Setup / Survival-based UL kit and philosophy on 10/05/2013 19:41:39 MDT Print View

"What exactly are you bugging from and where do you propose to bug to?"

See above recent post of mine.

"Hypothetically, if you are alone walking away from an event and three people with guns see your gear, well then what?"

Chances are, most people right away are not going to be that aggressive and bestial in nature. Least not when something first happens. Hence, most of those of us with smarts, good gear and skill, will be able to make it to the woods and the woods and wild places will be our best friends.

It's when widespread starvation, freezing, severe thirst or the like kicks in, then one will have to worry more about the above type scenario. Hypothetically speaking, if a long term collapse happens, i think things will get pretty rough for awhile, especially in cities and the like, but ultimately i think there are a lot of good people on this Earth that will move more actively in leadership or exemplar roles, and really help people out, and i think small communities will build up faster than one may think, and i think these kind of intentional communities will be our saving grace.

I've been involved with current intentional communities some, and while they are a lot of work, they can and do work when the ideals are right and commonly shared. That's what the future will be about, common shared practical, collectively helpful ideals.

So, let's not sell humanity out too fast. Without the influence of mainstream media, corporations, international banking systems, corrupt government, standard currency/money, etc, etc, i think people have a real good shot of getting their acts together and rebuilding a much better civilization based on less materialistic and selfish ideals, but more on sharing, helping one another, and treating the earth and nature with a lot more respect.

Along those lines, check out some of Howard Storm's NDE accounts. The man was a hard core atheist and materialistic hedonist, and self professed unhappy ahole before his NDE. During his NDE, he was given future information and was shown some different collapse probabilities. He was very surprised to see a very enlightened and happy civilization arising fairly quickly after a collapse. There are other accounts similar to his. He like many others, was also told that the Creative Forces weren't particularly happy about the direction that America has taken.

Speaking of NDE's, and especially one with A LOT of credibility, check out "Proof of Heaven", awesome account of a hard core trained scientific professional type, whose brain was more or less mush during his experiences. Nothing to do with future collapse stuff, but if you're at all open minded as well as skeptical, quite convincing. Other than a book, the man isn't selling anything except positive messages about the importance of love, kindness, etc.

Ok, i promise to get to the gear and the more left brain stuff in the next post.

. .
(RogerDodger) - F

Locale: (...)
... on 10/05/2013 19:53:58 MDT Print View


Edited by RogerDodger on 07/07/2015 09:49:29 MDT.

just Justin Whitson
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Bug Out Bag / Prepper Setup / Survival-based UL kit and philosophy on 10/05/2013 20:27:43 MDT Print View

Roger, humor is always good and appreciated (when not at the hurtful expense of others). And yes, after the initial stress and challenges wear down, i suspect there will be a lot of baby making. But i also suspect that at some point, a conscious, collective decision to limit population by having very few children, will be agreed upon by most due to more concern with the environment and our impact on the Earth as a whole system.

Ok, gear stuff. Here are some of our supplies, well actually, a lot of the gear (or ideas related to same) that i've talked about here, is not just for backpacking, but also connected to collapse oriented stuff. I love backpacking, but it's also an opportunity for me to test my survival based gear and to refine things.

Oh, and while i said i'm not stocking up on guns and ammo like a lot of people who are "prepping", i do have some connection. My wife, after having some dreams about collapse type stuff and seeing herself carrying a rifle in a couple of these, thought it might be a good idea to buy a gun. She did a lot of research and came up with Ruger LR 22 rifle and some related ammo for self protection and hunting (yes, we who are mostly vegetarian now minus the occasional wild caught fish, realize we may have to hunt some if stuff like this happens).

Besides her rifle and ammo, i have a compound bow and she has a re curve bow. I like the idea of bows in a lot of ways, because it's easier to make your own arrows than to forage ammo from stores where strongly selfish type people will be setting traps and watching closely. Bows are also mostly silent, and the right bow with the right arrows are quite powerful, can easily take down even black bear.

We have a bunch of seeds of various kinds, especially drought resistant plants--this is more for long term stuff once things settle.

Multiple and different kinds of rain gear. I have Stoic Vaporshell, Paramo type stuff, poncho tarp, some Frogg Toggs and tyvek tape (emergency back up use only) etc.

Our main tent is a Seek Outside 3 person silnylon Tipi tent with corresponding titanium wood stove. Besides the titanium wood stove for the tent, i have a mini titanium cook stove. Alcohol, esbit, etc, are only short term options.

Lot's of lightweight, strong cord, and of different kinds. Some dyneema stuff, and some nylon stuff (for climbing).

Solar and hand crank chargers and rechargeable batteries for lighting options.

I mentioned earlier a better method of carrying more and heavier gear, the modded bicycle trailer than can be pushed and pulled simultaneously--small, lightweight, very maneuverable, and can run fast with it if necessary.

Another option along those lines are well made, jogging strollers.

Water filtration--having multiple stuff is key. Some filter straws (with carbon) and Sawyer squeeze. Very important, store Sawywer squeeze always in some high ethanol content liquid. Will keep it freezing, and constantly disinfect it.

Also have a more serious water filter gravity style, with ceramic, silver, carbon, etc than lasts a long time and can be cleaned. Not close to be UL, but water will be the new oil and gold in the future, especially during solar heats. If a water source is questionable, always dig a few feet down, a couple of yards away from it.

For animal protection, besides the bows and a gun, i have a hybrid Cold Steele Katana-machete type blade that has a tanto point. I've learned i can also throw this like a spear very well short distances.

Course a couple of knives. Another one i like is another Cold Steel one that is designed to be turned into a spear point--has a hollow handle with a small hole for a nail, screw, etc. Also a smaller knife that will always be kept on person.

Which relates to A VERY important piece of gear, more important than backpack, more important than down or Apex insulation, more important than a tent, a stove, etc, etc.

A rugged, long lasting fanny pack, which in my case i've chosen Zpacks Multi-pack. Essential beyond belief. This will have all the most important gear in it, a small lightweight but functional knife (like a Mora), fire starting, emergency blanket, extra windshirt, compass (though that will get very unreliable during strong solar activity because of how it screws with the magnetic field), some extra high calorie food, Sawyer filter, water container (Evernew), and a filter straw, etc.

One can run very fast with a fully loaded, right sized fanny pack. Try running very fast with a fully loaded, 70L Jam, or the like. The point is, do not get separated from your fanny pack, wear it almost always. It's much easier to get separated from a backpack under certain conditions.

There's definitely more, but i also want to point out that for me, this stuff is only for the transition period. I plan on becoming much more Native American like as i learn and adapt to living outside in nature. Eventually a lot of the above will be dropped and we will rely more on skill and certain mind sets. I've been working on this some as well, but probably not as much as i could be. I find mind sets/attitude is extremely important in any kind of difficulty or challenge.

God, an uber liberal "prepper", what is the world coming to, an end or something?

;) :)

Edited by ArcturusBear on 10/06/2013 07:13:33 MDT.

just Justin Whitson
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Bug Out Bag / Prepper Setup / Survival-based UL kit and philosophy on 10/05/2013 21:08:40 MDT Print View

Hi Steven, thanks, i appreciate the appreciation! I kind of expected to get lambasted by posting some of this kind of stuff here (perhaps i will more so just experience silent ostracization by the majority later). I'm not sure why i went into the personal stuff so much either, but it felt right at the time.

just Justin Whitson
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Bug Out Bag / Prepper Setup / Survival-based UL kit and philosophy on 10/05/2013 21:19:51 MDT Print View

Hi Roger,

That's very commendable. My wife and i don't have any particularly close ties anywhere near us, but i know we will very much be involved with helping people further down the line if something like this happened. In fact, i plan to devote my life and all my energy to it. To some extent, my life is already devoted to it.

Also, remember, for a full collapse scenario, death will actually be much easier than trying to survive. There is nothing wrong with death, it's misnamed. Speaking as someone very close to their mother (we even had the same b-day), who watched her get sick with cancer at age 16, and later watched her die when age 20 (amidst many other simultaneous challenges).

It's "ok" to let go of people if you can't realistically help them survive (like an elderly person), because in reality, we're always connected to others, especially those those we share love bonds with. Try your best for those whom you can help, but expend your energy where it's most needed and most helpful in a long term sense.

Don Morris
(hikermor) - F
Bugging Out on 10/05/2013 21:46:12 MDT Print View

Given an urban context, if I felt I had to travel any significant distance, say twenty miles or more, I would seriously consider using my touring bike, with or without a trailer. For the same energy expenditure, I could easily travel three times as far in about half the time, and go nearly everywhere I could reach on foot with a backpacking load. If the bike breaks down, then start walking.

With experience in backpacking, one has an idea of personal capabilities, and one is likely to have appropriate gear. For many years, I actively participated in mountain SAR, keeping a basic backpack ready to go on very short notice. In effect, it was a bug out bag, tweaked at intervals for seasonal, local conditions (big difference in Arizona between winter and summer).

The variables in play for different disasters differ considerably,so planning ahead and playing "what if" games will be fruitful. In general, I prefer bugging in to bugging out, but that isn't always prudent or possible.