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Picture of Life Out There: Survival Kit
      "Out there;" a phrase often used to describe the vast wildernesses that cover a large amount of the world. It is a place where human beings fear to go, where terror reigns and a travelers' only companions are the thoughts in his head, and the rustling of the wind. Those who venture into this land of fear and adventure unprepared seldom make it out unscathed, and in many cases, alive. The only way to make it through an ordeal, out there, is to have the ultimate survival kit ready at your disposal. This Instructable will show you the key concepts and items that should go in to a good survival pack.
 
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Step 1: HIKING EQUIPMENT

Picture of HIKING EQUIPMENT
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       Some of the most important things to include in a survival kit are basic hiking tools. These tools can help you navigate and stay safe as you travel through the wilderness. Items that will protect you and help guide you through the climate and terrain of the wild are included in this section.

Items to include:

-A small umbrella: An umbrella will allow you to travel further during inclement weather conditions without risking sickness or exposure, and can also be used for shelter.
-A knife: A knife will allow you to easily kill food and cut down plants to navigate through dense foliage. It can also be used to build shelter and to provide protection.
-A compass: One of the most basic yet necessary of all hiking tools. This item will help you navigate and find your way through any environment, and also provide a means of documenting landmarks and goal points for travel.
-An emergency blanket: An emergency blanket is necessary for keeping warm at night, providing shelter, and, in intense survival situations, to provide shelter from fire and heat. Easily foldable enough to fit in a pocket, these blankets are a must-have for any survival kit and any environment.
-A whistle: A whistle not only will allow you to contact others in a group survival situation, but can also be used to alert rescuers of your location and need. They can also be used to frighten off predators such as bears and mountain lions, and to measure the depths of caves through their echoes.
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nerfrocketeer (author) 1 year ago
If you liked this, please feel free to leave a comment! :)
Darocan7 days ago
İ love those sort of kits yaaay
garfnodie10 days ago

You mention the Pop-Its as a noise a make device, and also for starting a fire. I've never known a pop-it that made any kind of hot spark that could start a fire, I pop those things in my hand and between my fingers all the time without any pain or burns. I realize they do technically have explosive materials in them, I just don't think anyone should be led to believe they have enough chemicals in them to be used to start a fire with. I think they would be better off having one of those magnesium fire starter sticks instead of a handful of pop-its.

This is thought out pretty well just needs better quality items ESPECIALLY the knife , a folder in a true survival scenario wouldn't end well at all , you need some thing that's a fixed blade (full tang would be the best) and that has a good steel like 440 or something, its probably the most important item in the whole kit! but overall good job with it ! = )
Tuan JinnN17 days ago

Nice list, I would add a small tower that nobody seems to care ever. It would come extremely handy in some cases and ease your way through the tough time

nerfrocketeer (author)  Tuan JinnN15 days ago

Thanks, I did list towels in step 8, but I appreciate the thought!

Oh, my bad, somehow I missed that... cheers.

ArizonaM12 days ago

it's a good concept, but to be honest, you have a lot of useless and/or ineffective items. a survival pack should be based off of the 10 c's of survival and be packed with actually durable equipment that's NOT going to fail you out in the field.

cutting: a solid, well tempered fixed blade knife that has a blade between 4-7 inches backed up with a folder from a REPUTABLE source, so ditch the chinese novelty junk. a good example combination is the schrade schf9 and cold steel large voyager. both are geared toward the budget conscious and can be purchased from amazon for under $50 each. ditch the chinese made multi-tool and victorinox wannabe and get a gerber or leatherman and a REAL swiss army knife. you don't need equipment failure in the bush and they WILL fail. also, ditch the screwdriver. you won't find any of those in the bush. you also need a way to touch up the edge of your blades, so you should carry a sharpener. my suggestion would be the lansky sharpening rod or the worksharp field sharpener. both can be had on amazon for less than $30 (shipping not included)

cordage: 100 feet of 550 paracord and a small spool of bank line is all you need. ditch the poly rope. a large container of unflavoured, waxed dental floss wouldn't be a bad idea either.

container: something to carry water in as well as BOIL water in. you have a canteen, that's a good start. now all you need is a metal 24 oz cup for a boiler.

cover: the brolly takes up unneeded bulk and weight and increases the chance of equipment failure. you want something to keep the rain off and build a shelter from? get a poncho with a hood. other than that, for a more serious shelter, strap a 8 x 10 tarpaulin to the side of your pack and learn how to rig up a shelter with it.

combustion: ditch the pop-its, they're useless. ditch the rocks and get at least a 3/8 x 4 inch ferro rod from either firesteel.com or world of fire on amazon. the matches aren't that bad of a backup, but at least make sure they're lifeboat matches which burn for 15 seconds and back that up with a bic lighter. also, i'm shocked you had no balls of cotton wool and petrolatum. a ball of cotton smeared with a bit of petrolatum and fluffed up takes a spark from a ferro rod in an instant and burns for a couple minutes to light a damp tinder bundle. ditch the toothpicks and confetti. they won't do you any good and tinder is available almost everywhere. if you feel you need to pack tinder, grab 10 feet of 3/8 inch manila rope. it can be processed into tinder very quickly that will take a spark beautifully.

then there are the other 5 c's

cotton: a couple cotton bandannas as a prefilter, an improvised pot holder or for medical reasons or just as a sweat band for your head in hot conditions.

compass: a GOOD compass, like the classic silva

candle: i see you have the hat light, which isn't a bad idea. ditch the thought of the battery operated tea lights though. they're for nothing but ambiance and yes, they ARE fragile. fragile equipment has no place in the bush. you can get a streamlight stylus pro for about $17-$20 on amazon for a good torch. oh yes, pack a couple pair of spare batteries. the flair light is another good idea.

cargo tape: not what i'd call an "essential", but having 25 feet of well made duct tape isn't a bad idea for expedient tarp repairs or as last ditch cordage.

canvas needle: a sail needle and a small spool of waxed linen thread. maybe even an awl thrown in for good measure.

a whistle is a good idea for signalling and so is a signal mirror. the rest are just toys or a hazard to carry and have no place in a serious matter like this. if you're going to carry something bright to attract attention, you're gonna need something much bigger than that. it should be 3 foot x 3 foot. your little sign will have no effect from any appreciable distance. nice idea with the books, that was spot on.

the fry pan? ditch it, it takes up unnecessary space. your main priority is water anyway and any food you find in the bush can be boiled. if you do catch fish, you can cook it by making a grill from thumb sized green limbs. if you're going to carry a plate and eating ware, ditch the party favours and use stainless or heavy plastic. again, avoid equipment failure in the bush. what you have is too unreliable. after all, this is survival we're talking about, not some pick-nick in the park. gloves? for picking up your prey? lol if you're that afraid of your prey being infected with pathogens that you need gloves to pick it up, you shouldn't be eating it in the first place. really, if you're that afraid of pathogens, just stay at home. a person only needs two pair of gloves for medical emergencies.

if you're going to carry a radio, get one that's strong enough to receive noaa channels.

food.....take what you have and throw it all out, then replace it with something sensible like clif bars. a person can live on 4 clif bars a day with moderate activity. sweets shouldn't be there at ALL. nice idea with the lemon though. also, ditch the water and carry a survival straw. water weighs your pack down and unless you live in the desert, it's not difficult to come by.

your personal hygiene kit can be pared down to a bar of soap and a bog roll. although the heat pad is a good idea in winter and everyone should have even a BASIC 1st aid kit. the rest is unnecessary bulk.

most everything on step 10 can be gotten rid of. a pad of paper, reliable pen or two and a few safety clips are great. ditch the scissors and markers. are we practicing survival or teaching primary school. replace the gag bog roll with vet wrap from the local farm and feed. it breaths, your fake bog roll DON'T. also, ditch the "other possibly useful things" and your sack of office supplies. it's more useless bulk.

by going with those suggestions, you'll pare down your kit a LOT and end up with something more practical.

puggirl41516 days ago

I'm going to favorite this one. Living in earthquake country I have 2 survival packs; One in the trunk in case I'm on the road and can't get back home in an emergency and one in the closet to grab if I'm home and the quake happens in the middle of the night. I need to add more supplies but it's not that easy to find in the urban setting. Most stuff in sporting goods stores and even REI is expensive or not very useful. I would like to make more of my stuff DIY so it's custom to my needs. The only question I have is how big (cubic inches or some measurement) a backpack? I have trouble fitting the most rudimentary supplies once I stuff all the clothing and food in there. Also I don't have a family I need to share my stuff with, but what about an emergency pack for my dog since I would never leave her behind in an emergency.

nerfrocketeer (author)  puggirl41515 days ago

Thanks! The average backpack (which is perfect for this kit) is 17" tall by 13" wide by 5" thick. I would direct you to this guide for folding clothes and saving space. I would go with a second, separate bag for your pug. Remember, in a survival kit you should only pack the bare minimum needed to save space and weight!

Thanks will check out the guide you linked:)
nerfrocketeer (author)  puggirl41513 days ago

Great! I hope they help! :D

Seo1016 days ago

Plastic rope, are you kidding? Why not manila, hemp or any of various braded or multi-strand climbing rope which will hold up to strain and weight without stretching like a rubber band and will keep a knot without slipping. If this is a survival bag why not the best?

nerfrocketeer (author)  Seo1015 days ago

Yes I am kidding. The plastic rope was really just a placeholder for the photo.

HollyMann18 days ago

Wow - this is impressive! Amazing survival kit and info. You are an excellent writer by the way. The first paragraph really drew me in. I used to be a journalist in the Army - if that means anything. :). Very thorough Instructable. I also like the recommendations on books to take - the Bible and Army guide - awesome! I also HIGHLY recommend the SAS survival guide. Please check it out when you get a chance!

nerfrocketeer (author)  HollyMann17 days ago

Thanks a ton HollyMann! You made my day again by featuring this! :D Being a journalist in the Army means a lot, and I definitely checked out that guide! I need to get one now to add to this kit; it's perfect! Thanks for recommending it!

No problem! :) Your Instructables are SO well put together, photos amazing and you put a lot into them. It should be featured! I think you will really like the SAS survival guide! :) I think it's one of my fav. books.

nerfrocketeer (author)  HollyMann15 days ago

I think I will too! Thank you so much! :)

Thank you for all the time, thought, and planning that you have put into assembling your kit and writing it up for us. It's easy to read and understand. I have paracord in mine as well. The good quality item (not the knock-off brands) don't stretch and they're long-lasting. If you are needing to attract attention you can tie a 3' or so length to the loop on a Cyalume stick, tie a holding knot in the other end, and swing it round in a circle. Rescue planes, helicopters, or people across a distant valley will see it easily. It's a good idea to PRACTICE with the items in your kit so that they are familiar in an emergency situation. Although I live in AK, which has no indigenous snakes, my emergency bag has a snakebite kit in it in case I end up having to travel Outside. Procedures for main first aid work such as CPR, snakebites, etc. change at times, so it is good to keep current on all of these. Also, keep your tetanus booster current! Many E-kit suggestions include waterproof ID (driver's license, military ID, dog tags, etc.) in the unhappy event that your body is being recovered rather than rescued. Practice using your compass with maps, and know how to tell directions in all kinds of terrain. The hiking stick I have used for over 25 years is also a Tracking Stick (Google this). If you make your own pace count and know how it varies with terrain and other conditions, you can keep track of distance covered by the use of Ranger beads (also on Google). You can easily make your own R-beads with paracord and pony beads. Practice building fires (outdoors in a SAFE place) with cotton balls rubbed in a little Vaseline and a magnesium striker (very inexpensive in many general stores). Build your practice fires in calm weather, rain, snow, and blowing wind so that you are completely confident with your skills! As you said, fire can definitely save your life! If you have any question about what you can eat out there in the woods, a couple of small lightweight guidebooks to your area's or state's flora and fauna can also save your life. I carry a harmonica in mine, too; it's small, lightweight, and an incredible mood-booster. My Bible is not waterproof; the more you have memorized, the more useful it is under all conditions. Thank you again for sharing this well thought-out pack with us!

nerfrocketeer (author)  lovethebackwoods15 days ago

Thanks for tose great suggestions! I've been meaning to add paracord to this 'Ible, but it sounds like you have enough tips to make a great guide as well! Glad to see an Alaskan here on 'Ibles for once! :) I didn't think there were any others.

ic1nyc16 days ago

Nice instructable, but would liked to have seen some coverage on tents, sleeping bags and clothing though. Would add a folding spade/shovel/some sort of digging tool; a takedown rifle for pack, along with a readily handy sidearm. Also, for medpack, would add some QuikClot and/or Kotex pads for wounds; some liquid suture or glue too. And, aside from TP, I don't see much use of the bible. If needed for "spiritual" purpose, one of those tiny ones will take up less space.

nerfrocketeer (author)  ic1nyc15 days ago

Some pretty good points! I'll add them to step 23 a but later! Thank you!

nerfrocketeer (author)  nerfrocketeer15 days ago

*bit

1MoClimb16 days ago

The most useful item is missing in this kit: a satellite locator like Spot that alerts others that you are in an emergency and tells them where to look for you. Also, a simple GPS with moving map would be advisable. Since most smart phones have that functionality (works even with out phone coverage), a smart phone is a must-have. For air rescue, get a flash light with a strobe beacon function. The new LED flashlights often provide surprisingly strong flashes.

Herb

nerfrocketeer (author)  1MoClimb15 days ago

Thanks for the suggestion, but some of those things are listed in step 23, and I have added a few strone flares.

Real-world testing will show that batteries are useless extra weight. A hand crank flashlight will work for years; Amazon: kinetic flashlight $20.

A simple small blue tarp will keep you dry but a survival blanket (in addition to the emergency space blanket) will do that plus capture heat from your campfire and also reflect your body heat back to you.

Maybe you live in a desert but I'd never venture out without my rain jacket / shell parka and a decent pair of boots. I'd also want a pair of Army cargo pants and a couple of shirt layers if I find the world goes to sh** while I'm wearing a suit or office clothes.

A magnesium fire starter will allow you to make a fire on a spare tire to create lots of smoke and also when you have run out of matches.

A survival signalling mirror (with a hole in the center so you can aim it) is highly recommended for attracting passing aircraft.

A couple of water filter straws will enable you to filter clean water from mud puddles long after your Army canteen has leaked out what you were carrying.

Why bug-out without a way to keep in touch with the rest of the world? There are a variety of small hand-cranked multi-band radios, AM-FM-shortwave, etc.

This seems to be more of an academic exercise because real world testing, even for just a weekend would point out many necessary modifications. (Fish identification cards = firestarter) I would be very sad to have to actually USE this pack.

Good suggestions. I actually have gotten a few of these things since I published the 'Ible. I need to update the pictures...

emibuc17 days ago
I would not use lemon juice for wound cleaning. Having attempted it before the sugar in lemon juice can lead to infection
fparra emibuc16 days ago
I would not use lemon juice either, I'd prefer, if going for nature's antibiotics, to use honey. It's high concentration of sugars dehydrated every know bug but Clostridium, but you should have your vaccines up to date anyway...
nerfrocketeer (author)  fparra15 days ago

True, I was thinking more along the lines of cooking.

nerfrocketeer (author)  emibuc17 days ago

Good point. I've never had trouble with it, but I can see what you mean. I'll add a note. Thank you!

dferguson517 days ago

Sounds like a good start!

I would recommend replacing the plastic canteen with a steel one (not aluminum) or with a steel water bottle. Both of these can boil water when necessary. Of course if you have something like a Stanley Cook Set (

http://www.amazon.com/Stanley-Adventure-Camp-Stain... can be used for boiling AND cooking. Also a metal cup for those one off cups of coffee, hot water, cocoa, etc.

Ditch the big fancy folding knife for a Mora Companion - These fixed blade knives are practically indestructible and can be used for either camp cooking or shelter building. I have seen people baton wood with them. It never hurts to carry a second fixed blade knife in case something happens to the first (lost, stolen, broken, etc.). And folding knives are (IMHO) just too easy to break. Pack a small sharpening stone or something as blades get dull.

Cotton balls dipped in petroleum jelly make great fire starters! But carry a BIC lighter just in case your fire making skills aren't up to the task!

A flashlight is a good idea but a head lamp is better. It frees up both hands. And it's better than those flashlight-in-a-cap things.

The $1 emergency blanket is just a piece of flimsy Mylar that is easily torn after the first use. Something like the SOL Survival Blanket (

http://www.amazon.com/Adventure-Medical-Kits-Survi... would be better. Plus it has one side that is orange for emergency signalling. It can be used for shelter if need be.

nerfrocketeer (author)  dferguson515 days ago

Those are some great improvement suggestions! Thank you! I'll add them to step 23 when I get a chance! :)

Betadine solution concentrate, to be diluted for disinfection. A good disposable lighter (reliable fire starter, compact and may be used many times. Wire, for snares, and other uses. Coban for bandaging and good for hemostatsis. A packet of hemoblock,a hemostatic solid material. Bleach.for disinfection and water purification. Adhesives (epoxy putty, cyanoacrylic glue). Old school razor blades. Water purification filter straw. Aluminum foil, many uses, cooking, signaling. Small bottle of olive oil. An antihistamine, other than diphenhydramine (it can make you drowsy). Plastic bags larger trash bags and one liter ziplocks. Caffine tablets, if you must stay awake. Petroleum jelly, for non stick bandages and fire starting. Spare socks. Condoms and tampons (many uses)More possible but these are a few ideas.

nerfrocketeer (author)  steve.fenster.515 days ago

Great ideas! I'll add them to step 23 soon! Thanks! :)

Hannahhoo16 days ago

Very useful! It seems lighter than most other 'survival packs' I've seen but still carries plenty of essentials.

nerfrocketeer (author)  Hannahhoo15 days ago

Thanks!

Xthinker1 year ago
It would probably be a good idea to include a fixed blade knife, you can get a very well made one for quite cheap called a Morakniv. Another thing to add would be a fire-steel, it is much more efficient than sparking rocks, and it will work muck better! I've linked a very cheap one, however it would be wise to get a better one! You could also do with a way to achieve food, you've mentioned the fishing wire and a gun, however if it is a matter of price... you could always go for a pellet or BB gun, a pellet gun will give you more power however the BB gun ammo will be more common. Both of the ones i have listed are CO2 powered, only based on price, if you have more money to spend go for a break barrel or multi-pump gun. There are also rifles available for little cost. 

Have a great time surviving!
nerfrocketeer (author)  Xthinker1 year ago
Those are great suggestions! All of the things you mentioned look really useful and versatile. I did mention a magnesium flint stick (step 23), however, which is a fire steel with a piece of flint that produces an ember. The guns are pretty good too, as I've seen them before. I might pick one up sometime. Thank you for your input! I hope I-or anyone else will never have to use this kit... :)
I use the kabar bk7 which has been an awesome fixed blade for me. i would also suggest a poncho or two vs an umbrella. Not only is the umbrella likely to break (with the 30 odd mechanisms in it), but it won't likely cover both you and your pack from rain. A poncho also has dozens of other uses such as Rain collection and water proofing etc. Also including a hammock would be a good idea. This helps keep you away from the dangers of sleeping directly on the ground (heat loss, animals, detection and more). Enos makes some out of parachute material for around $80. or you can go high tech and look at hennessey outfitters models which are usually over $150. Finally I'd suggest paracord. it has over 100 uses and is light weight but extremely strong. tie some 550 strength cord onto your pack for easy life saving lashing material. nice kit man!
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