The Three-Part Survival Kit System: Items You Should Carry in Your Survival Kit

     the-survival-store-s-large-ultimate-survival-kit-[2]-9448-pAs I mentioned in a previous article on this topic, I like to think of survival kits as a three part system consisting of the items I carry in my pockets, the items I carry in my survival kit, and items that I carry in my day pack. However, the survival items that I carry in my pockets represent the bare minimum that I need to survive a wilderness emergency and thus, given the choice, I would never limit myself to just those few items. Therefore, whenever I venture into the wilderness, I always carry my survival kit as well. However, if a survival kit is to be a constant companion on wilderness adventures, it must be convenient to carry and, if it is to serve its intended purpose, it must be properly stocked. Consequently, I like to use a small, military surplus, canvas pouch with a waterproof coating inside to hold my survival kit items and like to use a military surplus utility belt to carry it.

     However, regardless of what type of container you choose or how you choose to carry it, if a survival kit is to be effective, there are certain items it must contain in order to enable you to survive a stay in the wilderness. For instance, first it must contain the means to build a fire for warmth, to provide you with protection from predators, and to enable you to cook any game animals that you may trap or forage foods that you may gather.

Therefore, such items as a magnifying glass, waterproof matches, a fire starter stick, and a magnesium fire starter block with flint striker are all essential survival kit items. But, while the ability to stay warm and feed yourself is an essential part of wilderness survival, having the means to protect yourself from the elements is also a necessary part of the equation. Therefore, I consider such items as a mylar blanket or sleeping bag and an emergency rain poncho as well as string and cord for building shelters to be essential items as well.

Plus, having a means of operating and/or and navigating at night is also very useful and thus, I also include a small flashlight and extra batteries. Then, of course, there is the need to procure food and obtain drinkable water thus, such items as either stainless steel wire or black or green nylon string are essential for building snares and traps and water purification tablets are useful for purifying water (although boiling or filtering is preferable because the tablets make the water taste awful). Also, if you happen to find yourself located near to a body of water that contains fish and/or turtles, fishing gear is also an essential item.

Thus, I like to carry a significant length of monofilament fishing line wrapped around a small piece of cardboard along with a collection of fish hooks of various sizes as well as a collection of various sizes of lead split-shot sinkers. But, while these items are all well suited for obtaining food in the short term, I also like to have the means to enable myself to procure food in the event of a forced extended stay and thus, I also include a modern bow string of sufficient length to enable me to carve a longbow along with a set of arrowheads made from a thin bar of aluminum or steel (available at most hardware stores) which I make myself at home.

However, because it takes some time as well as a considerable amount of work to carve a longbow, my homemade arrowheads can also serve as points for darts which can be cast with an Atlatl which I can make very quickly and with very little effort. Then, there are a couple of other less specialized items that I like to include such as a wire survival saw or pocket chainsaw and a Swiss Army Knife that has both a leather awl and a small saw blade which is useful for making the nocks in both arrows and atlatl darts.

Then, although I am familiar with wilderness medicine, I also like to include a very small first aid kit which contains such items as chap sick, Echinacea capsules, aspirin, band aids, gauze bandages, and antibiotic ointment. Last but not least, I also like to have the means of signaling any rescue personnel that may be dispatched to find me and thus, I also include a small signal mirror and a coach’s whistle.

So, even though I consider the survival tools that I carry in my pockets to be absolutely essential to my ability to survive a wilderness emergency, I also consider them to be the bare minimum. But, when I combine the tools that I carry in my pockets with the tools that I carry in my survival kit, my chances of surviving a wilderness emergency are drastically increased and thus, as I stated previously, I always carry both when I decide to enter the wilderness regardless of whether it be for a day or a week because I never know when I might find myself in an emergency situation.




Written by,


Bill Bernhardt

Outdoor Professional

PS: Be sure to get your free Smith & Wesson knife right here.

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