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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ten years ago my hunting buddy and I returned to backpacking, a passion of our long-ago youth (we are 58-59). The skills rebuilt slowly and now we are hardcore wilderness types.

About five years ago it dawned on us that prepping for our wilderness adventures is, well, Prepping.

We love Big Bend National Park. The trails there are tough and remote. Conditions skirt along the edge of dangerous, we are a long way from help, and if we'll need it, it better be in our backpacks.

In short, the contents of wilderness backpacks exactly mirror the contents of a Prepper's "kit." Backpacking is a lab exercise in Prepping.
 

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Yes it is.

So you'd feel pretty confident if you had to grab your BOB and didi maow?

What would you say are your absolute must have BOB essentials and, if you had to survive out there for say a month, which firearm would you grab and how much ammo?
 

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For a month you are going to need an external frame backpack like a Kelty.
They carry much more weight easily and the lowest I have been able to
get mine down to is 65 lbs. without water!
So it's a work in progress.
I stripped it all down and am working on a complete redo.
Framed backpacks are superior for the long haul and the weight is
reasonable.

Kelty Backpacks | Hiking Backpacks, Daypacks & Laptop Backpacks
 

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Here lately I've been wanting to create my own bag not necessarily strictly as a bug-out bag, but one that can be used for hiking, etc. I agree though, backpacking is the lab exercise for prepping; nothing wrong with that. There is a website that I found that could be helpful for anybody who is interested in creating a bug-out bag.

Bug Out Bag List Resources, Survival Tips & More | Bug Out Bag Academy

They have some really intriguing thoughts and some might find it helpful for people who are interested in creating a hiking pack, or survival pack.
and remember the necessities: water, shelter, food, hygiene.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
What would I take if I had to bail out for a month? Let me go down my list:

(1) Shelter - one-person tent, sleeping bag, tyvek (that stuff is great), Big Agnes Air Core
(2) Clothing - changes of socks and underwear, extra shirt, rain gear, fleece pullover (I live in SE Texas, so deep cold is not an issue), hat, sunglasses, bandanna.
(3) First aid -a one-month bail out will require a more extensive selection than a week-long wilderness trip; personal meds; I include my hygiene items in with first aid; chap stick and sunscreen.
(4) Equipment (my "kit" catch-all) - Leatherman Juice s2, good folding knife (Spyderco Tenacious or better), para cord and good string, fire making, duct tape, assortment of garbage bags, flash light and batteries, compass and map, fishing kit
(5) Sustenance - water purification and water bottles, salt, pepper and Tony C's; grab and go food; basic "mess kit"
(6) Firearm - tough call: if I am bailing out to the wilderness to lay low, I'd want a .22 rifle (we load up a bit heavier out at Big Bend).

What do you think?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
As for a pack to haul it in, I am of the "less is more" school of thinking. For that matter, even in my wilderness bail-out, lay-low philosophy I tend toward "less is more."

You're kidding yourself if you think you can plan and pack for every contingency. If you did have it all, you certainly couldn't carry it all.

You will have to make do, improvise and do without.

You'll have to pack your wits and skills.

You asked about ammo - maybe 250 rounds of mixed mini-mags.

I'd also take a Bible.
 

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If it were me, I'd start with the most basic, and work my way out...

1) Good sturdy knife, flint and canteen (I threw in a few Djeep disposable lighters because they're dual-tank and dependable).

2) Tarp, paracord, wool clothing for 2 (cotton is kinda worthless), space blanket.

3) Fishing pole in a can (line, hooks, swivels, sinkers), wire saw, wool blanket, LED flashlight.

4) 22 LR would be the most useful for food (39A Mountie), but 357 Mag would be a good option if protection was an issue (1894 CP). 300 rounds, minimum.
- Those of you who can shoot "lights out" might think that's excessive... I'm okay with that. (Even 300 rounds of 357 doesn't take up that much space. A little heavy, but...)

5) Basic first aid kit, bio soap, personal water filter (Survival Straw, Life Straw) and iodine tabs.

I have lots of experience backpacking, and zero experience in survival mode.

Looking forward to more answers!

Brocky
 

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yes when younger w/o kids I did a lot of backpacking with whomever I could con into going, week long, two week long excursions carrying everything on our backs. I also backpacked Big bend park and we had to prepare differently than when we backpacked in Virginia. Learned a lot and have seen some beautiful parts of this country backpacking and I suggest it for anyone. Guess I could agree it was "prepping" just a new fancy word for basic outdoor and survival skills. I was taught these skills by getting out and doing it, making mistakes and correcting in the boy scouts, by my Pop's and various other folks along the way, so guess I been a prepper all my life, in the boy scouts we just called it being prepared......................
 

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wouldn't mind it but not ready to go it alone so would need someone to go with but doing it with a tarp and building shelters sounds more fun than putting up a tent
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
yes when younger w/o kids I did a lot of backpacking with whomever I could con into going, week long, two week long excursions carrying everything on our backs. I also backpacked Big bend park and we had to prepare differently than when we backpacked in Virginia. Learned a lot and have seen some beautiful parts of this country backpacking and I suggest it for anyone. Guess I could agree it was "prepping" just a new fancy word for basic outdoor and survival skills. I was taught these skills by getting out and doing it, making mistakes and correcting in the boy scouts, by my Pop's and various other folks along the way, so guess I been a prepper all my life, in the boy scouts we just called it being prepared......................
Yes - Big Bend is different. WE also backpack Arkansas a lot. The water situation in the Bend requires an entirely different preparation and a different mind set.
 

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Younger day's I backpacked alot with and without climbing gear, lot's of weight.

In the Infantry (ABN), I suppose you could say we backpacked, LOL! The infantry taught me ALOT(!), that a person really doesn't need alot to survive. We did quite well with shelter, poncho, water, food, and weapon,very spartan existence.

For long term, I believe that the answer is to be found in the old way's of the long hunter, the explorer, the mountain man, and not least, the native American. Most of these folks carried a knife, axe,hatchet or 'hawk; A blanket and oil cloth (shelter), flint and steel and a large cup or small pot. The clothes on their back and a firearm.

Being to beat up to "hump a ruck", I would have to think again of a spartan lifestyle. If I had to go and never come back, I would carry;

poncho
wool blanket
tarp for shelter
sheath knife, small axe, leatherman, and pocket knife
two Doan's magnesium/flint bar's
Two bic lighter's
two candles
petroleum jelly
military canteen and cup
two pairs of sock's
sewing needles and two roll's of dental floss
Coat and extra shirt
.22 rifle and ammo
.357 revolver and ammo
cleaning gear for weapon's
three bandana's
wool hat, fedora or cowboy style.

Food and water would be gathered as needed and after initial supply was used up. I think I have everything on the list, could have forgotten a couple of things. I wouldn't leave until I absolutely had to, choosing to bug in. If I did have to go, there would be a fire, I'm leaving nothing useful behind. I don't want my own used against me.
 
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I remember when a bug out bag was more or less when the cops or a angry husband was going to cause a
Problem. Camping we always car camped and day hiked just easier and less spartan.

I have a lot of 22 rifles/pistols and figure one or two of them are going along.

I have a 1993 Chevy four wheel drive pickup that needs a little TLC in the tranny but that is my bug out bag holder so to speak. Just need to fix her up a little so I don't worry to much about weight. I just grab pre assembled boxes or action packers and I am good to go.

What I need to really set back up is a personal get out of town/back to the house from work bag for the newer car. I took out the winter bag and in went daughters softball equipment. We have no games this weekend so the softball stuff is out right now. I think i will set up a summer setup with an old bag.
 

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What would I take if I had to bail out for a month? Let me go down my list:

(1) Shelter - one-person tent, sleeping bag, tyvek (that stuff is great), Big Agnes Air Core
(2) Clothing - changes of socks and underwear, extra shirt, rain gear, fleece pullover (I live in SE Texas, so deep cold is not an issue), hat, sunglasses, bandanna.
(3) First aid -a one-month bail out will require a more extensive selection than a week-long wilderness trip; personal meds; I include my hygiene items in with first aid; chap stick and sunscreen.
(4) Equipment (my "kit" catch-all) - Leatherman Juice s2, good folding knife (Spyderco Tenacious or better), para cord and good string, fire making, duct tape, assortment of garbage bags, flash light and batteries, compass and map, fishing kit
(5) Sustenance - water purification and water bottles, salt, pepper and Tony C's; grab and go food; basic "mess kit"
(6) Firearm - tough call: if I am bailing out to the wilderness to lay low, I'd want a .22 rifle (we load up a bit heavier out at Big Bend).

What do you think?
I like it. Love this thread too! Thanks for starting it and again, welcome to the MO.

Some alternative or additional ideas ...

For shelter, especially where you live, you might consider simplifying with a poncho and liner ... good ones, not the cheap Chinese made stuff. Two ponchos are even better. I've used Tyvek before but I wish it came in a different color than white. There are great tie-down clips you can use with Tyvek, along with a little duct tape makes for a helluva shelter.

I'd have lots of paracord, and some snares that I am very practiced with.

Assorted hooks, line and a few sinkers.

Water purification x 4. A Katadyn mini, iodine tablets and a purification straw that is bladder comparable. V-shaped coffee filters for straining.

Tubular packets of various powdered drinks. The more the better especially enriched with electrolites and Vit-C.

An excellent trauma kit with plenty of extra tape, mole skin, triple antibiotic gel, pain killers, Flanders butt cream. Small alkaline salt block. Bug juice, deet kind. Etc.

Needles and thread. Big spool of waxed dental floss. (Strands inside #7 paracord can also be used.)

Some plastic bags, a good knife and a utility tool like your Leatherman.

Dried rice and beans, chicken bullion, salt and pepper. A couple of handfulls of Taco Bell hot sauce packs. Jerky. Vacuum packed tuna. Dried mac & powdered cheese. I always replace the elbow mac with mini shells because they cook in half the time. Rolled oats and sugar. Corn meal, doesn't take a lot to make a comfortable difference. Instant coffee. Powdered creamer. Hard candy. All of it in zip lock baggies for reuse.

Vitamins.

An alcohol stove and fuel. A good titanium pot and cup and a good titanium spork.

Fire starting x 10. Zippo and fuel. Bic. Waterproof matches. Mag rod. Vas cotton. Char cloth. Steel wool. Lightweight plastic magnifying glass. (Multiple purposes) Parafin candles (also multi purpose) and finally a very small bundle of turpentine wood shavings wrapped with twine. All of the tender in zip lock bags or tins.

Two good identical small titanium flashlights with extra batteries. Smaller and lighter the better.

Micro lightweight radio, AM/FM/UHF. The one I have weighs 3 ounces with the coin battery. No speakers, just ear buds.

Hygiene stuff of course, especially liquid soap, and socks and underwear of course.

Extra glasses.

Combine our stuff, shedding any unneeded redundancy and depending on how much beans a rice you load, and your bag should come in under 40 pounds.

Then comes the heavy stuff.

Me personally, I'd probably choose to sling my 1894P with an Alaskan on my hip and maybe 100 rds of ammo including some shot shells.

Sans the firearms, my Son and I did 14 days on the Appalachian trail two summers ago plus we had a few mountain house dried proteins with us. We could have done thirty easy I think. The further we went the lighter the packs got and I was glad of that. I lost 11 pds in 14 days.




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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Have you tried the ESBIT stove and fuel tablets?

I am really conflicted about firearm plans is such cases.

When we go to Big Bend, we take two clips for our high-cap handguns.

I have a tub full of some kind of nutrient table - you know anything about those? Supposed to be based on military research into downed pilots and hteir stress needs while evading.

But if I bailed out and laid low (my plan) I don't think I carry that heavy. Plan "B" after a .22 rifle would be my 336ss 30-30.

Great idea about the glasses. Ditto the powdered drinks.

My less is more theory also applies to flashlights. We have found that your eyes will crave as much power as you bring, or will be satisfied with as little power as you bring.
 

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Used ESBIT for years. First used them in the military more than three decades ago. They give off noxious fumes and evaporate once opened.

There are tons of various nutrient supplements out there for backpackers.

There are high nutrition, high protein survival cakes that taste like crap ... pilots have them in their survival kits and a lot of boaters keep them when they go offshore. I tried them once and they were so horrible and made me so thirsty I decided not to include them in my stores.

If I did carry a 22, it would be my AR7 in addition to the 44 Mag stuff. It's lightweight, accurate and reliable and it rides nicely inside or outside a pack when broken down.

Flashlights are a must and you need a backup. Use them only sparingly - but if you are injured or needing to recharge a compass or watch at night or even if you drop something at night and need to find it ... you gotta have a good flashlight.

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Forgot fishing kit and snare wire.

My arms choice isn't etched in stone by any means.
 
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Forgot fishing kit and snare wire.

My arms choice isn't etched in stone by any means.
I've about come to the conclusion that fishing in a survival situation is done with throw lines or nets. I've fished on the trail and realized that if I had to depend on fishing with a pole for protein I'd starve.

So now I plan my limited fishing essentials around a throw line methodology, a trot line rig that can be thrown from the shore in cold weather or tied off the banks in warm weather ... and these days I have a hammock/sein (sp) cast net thing that I could use as a fish trap. It's specialty made with very tight webbing and doubles as a hammock for sleeping off the ground.

Fishing, in a survival situation, is a luxury. It's meant to be done when you reach the kind of fishy waters you need, can set up camp for a little while and actually collect fish ... eat yourself full, smoke the rest and then drive on with the mission.

Fishing gear should be chosen carefully with that in mind meaning artificial lures are almost worthless and you need to have a good, large, assortment of hooks.

I learned the hard way to always store hooks separately from everything else.

I grabbed my bag and hit the trail one weekend knowing I would encounter a couple of streams that had produced fish in the past.

I used to keep hooks, along with other things, packed in an Altoids tin on my survival knife, a big Battle Rat chopper from Swamp Rat.

Well, at some point during storage the pressure put on the tin had caused a small foil package of iodine to burst and wet the contents of the tin. In doing so it corroded all the hooks and the small ones I needed were now brittle and useless. (Not to mention it corroded the inside of the tin as well as ruining my moleskin and my razor blades.)

Since then I keep separate fishing kits in empty plastic Copenhagen cans. They are non corrosive, the line rolls-up and fits in them nicely and I devote one whole lightweight can to nothing but hooks. Corks and sinkers can be made on the fly from many things, but homemade hooks in the wild are a myth. No such thing really exists although you will see them touted from time to time ... I've never seen one I would trust my life to in the bush.

Also, steel hooks can come in handy on bird snares and even as sewing needles or sutures in a pinch.

A Copenhagen can holds a lot of hooks.

ETA: Good gosh I hate autospell when I am posting from my phone. It's like fighting a ghost in the machine over expressing what it is you are trying to convey. Please take any misplaced or strange words I may have missed with that in mind.

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I made up a couple of small fishing kit's with 35mm film cans or the plastic match safe's as a container. A few splitshot, hooks and wet flies in grub,insect, and egg's patterns as well as a couple of coachman pattern's. All proven PNW style's. For line, I wind it around the matchsafe, or use an empty teflon tape spool. I typically use 10# test.

I have looked at the survival type net's and think that they'd be a good piece of kit. Multi purpose as well. A game cart would also go with for carrying. An LBE setup with small ruck for the absolute minimum, the cart for the nice to have like a small shovel and an Estwing axe, and file.

Three or four bow saw blades can be easily carried, a frame made with a SAK with saw blade, and a couple of 16d nails for pin's to fasten the blades by the holes on each end. A length of para cord can be used to tension the frame.
 
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