Reliable Survival Kit




Lately i've seen all these do it yourslef survival kits, and quite frankly they suck. As an experienced backpacker and wilderness enthusiest, any "survival kit" that fits into an altoids tin isnt adequate. I will show you the survival kit that i bring on any trek. In fact, besides a tarp and jacket, this is all i take for a week long trek.

Step 1: Water

Water is you biggest asset in the wild. So you want many ways to carry it.

A non breakable water bottle is the prefered way.

A foldable water container can supply extra storage while not taking up much space when not in use.

And believe it or not, a non- lubritcated condom can hold up to a gallon of water.

Step 2: Fire

Fire ca be used to keep away bugs and predatores, cook, purify water, prvide warmth, and boost morale. to make life easier on yourself you may want to use these to start your fires.

Fire steel works very nice.

Matches should be coated in wax and and placed in a waterproof match safe.

Butane lighters work very nicely. However, the clear ones are better because you can see the amount of fuel left and adjust the size of the flame.

Cottonballs soaked in vasoline ignite easily and burn for quite a while

Step 3: Flashlight

Bring a flash light for night time activities. While in some places the moon is bright enough to see by, clouds could be in the sky blocking out the light. And because torches can be unreliable bring a flashlight and extra batteries.

Step 4: First Aid

You never know what will happen to you so be prepared with an adequate first aid kit.

Mine contains:

Small tube of Neosporin
A 36x36x51 inch triangular bandage
Roll of adhesive tape
Some adhesive bandages
Mole skin
Small bar of soap
3 inch sterile pad
2inch sterile pad

Step 5: Knife

A good sharp knife is always a necessity. It can be use for all kinds of things.

Step 6: Compass

You should always have a compass with you if you no matter what.

Step 7: Iodine

Make sure that you have tincture of iodine 2%. You can use this for a couple of things. It can be used as a first aid antiseptic, and you can purify tour water with it.

Step 8: Signal Mirror

Obviously you want a way to get someones attention. There is no better way than a signal mirror. Make sure you put it in a protective case so that is doesnt get scrathced.

Step 9: Trash Bags

You can use trash bags for many things. If it starts to rain you can cut arm and neck holes and use it as a poncho. You can also use them to collect water.

Step 10: Para Cord

Para cord is stronger that most rope making it ideal for survival. But be sure you get real par cord. The real stuff has seven smaller cords inside of it. You should have about 50 feet of it.

Step 11: Wool Cap

Step 12: Bandana

Step 13: Emergency Blanket

Emergeny blankets will help to keep you warm by reflecting your body heat back at you.

Step 14: Dental Floss

Dental floss is amazingly strong and can be used as cordage.

Step 15: Whistle

Bring a whistle because ther is not natural sound that is close to that of a whistle. It may save your life.

Step 16: Duct Tape

Duct tape can be used for a lot of stuff. you can use it to repair rips in tents, tarps, clothing, temporarily seal a crack in a bottle, or canoe. It is an amazing thing to have with you because it can be used for just about anything.

Step 17: Surveyors Tape

You can use this tape to mark the way you went so that rescuers have an idea of where you are at.

Step 18: Ziploc Bags

Ziploc bags can be use to hold water, make a solar still, store food, and much more. It is a good idea to bring a coule different sized bags.

Step 19: Storage

You can keep it all in a nice little bag so that it is in one place.



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    35 Discussions


    2 years ago

    The personal Survival Kit (sometimes observed as a Survival Tin as a result of originally everything was carried in a tobacco tin) is intended to assist survival once trapped in a probably life - threatening survival scenario once water, food and shelter are restricted the fundamental plan is to hold with you the least bit times essential survival things that are not possible to seek out or tough to duplicate or manufacture in a very survival scenario to assist you to survive once all else is lost.


    3 years ago on Introduction

    a slight typo in the first pic:

    matces in waterproof container


    fire steal

    5 years ago on Step 19

    seams like to me you might be able to fit it all in the unbreakable bottle. Nice indestructible!


    7 years ago on Introduction

    Nice Instructable ! I realize this has been out there for awhile, but I hadn"t noted it til this AM. I like your sensible title, no brag no "Ultimate" or "Best". Just a fact, a reliable survival kit.
    My only comment other than how nicely you have done, is a comment regarding your intro remarks about the Altoids tin kits. The idea behind these is simple: often you find yourself without your preferred kit or gear.
    Some of us, through misfortune and unexpected circumstance, have had the experience of finding ourselves with only what is in our pockets. Thus, the pocket kit is an idea which needed development. An Altoids tin is durable and about the right practical size for someone to carry EVERY DAY. Not just when we head out to the wilderness.
    Even the best laid plans can go wrong. If your small plane encounters problems and is forced to land, and you discover "some incompetent" assistant did not put all the luggage on board, you may end up with only what's in your pockets, especially if the plane were to crash and burn. In which case the incompetent person is irrelevant, the bags all burned. Been there, done that !! There are dozens of scenarios where one might suddenly find themselves with only what's in their pockets and their wits to survive. That is the thinking behind the Altoids Tin Kit. Not perfect, but definitely usuable and survivalworthy, IF YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TRAINING. Everyone making these kits, as well as those reading about them, should go take a good survival course or two. Do not simply read about it.
    Do indeed read, and more than one author, to get a variety of ideas and opinions. Which is why I said a good survival course or two, not the stuff they produce for entertainment on TV.

    1 reply

    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    I agree completely. I've found it is more effective to bring tools than materials, meaning, I know how to make tools out of stuff I find in the area. You can save the trouble of bringing certain medications if you research the area's plant life. I'm only in high school but I'm already teaching myself to flintknap. Also if you drill a small hole in the top of the Altoids tin it can serve as a char cloth kit. Put small 1" by 1" pieces of cotton inside it and put the tin in a fire till smoke stops coming out the top then kick it out and inside is char cloth.


    5 years ago on Introduction

    I would invest in a small high carbon steel striker. They can be difficult to come by but are well worth it. This way you only need the striker and can save the space/weight of the flint. Many areas have some form of stone that can be used as a flint. Plus, in combination with some char-cloth, it is a very reliable method of fire starting.


    6 years ago on Step 3

    get a flashlight that has one of those handles for winding it to charge then you don't need batteries.


    7 years ago on Step 6

    I'd also recommend learning how to use it... At least stop a few times and check which direction your heading so you can backtrack if needed. Also to properly use a compass you should have a map....
    Very practical kit...good job

    1 reply

    Reply 6 years ago on Step 6

    Yes, small laminated (or otherwise waterproof) map would be a good idea... even if you think you know the place very well, it's good practice...


    You also need to make your things a little more compact.
    P.S bring a backup knife,you never know


    6 years ago on Introduction

    The condom thing is actually surprising, i thought you were just making a joke. haha


    6 years ago on Step 10

    With the paracord, you should instead make it into a few braclets so that it doesn't take up any space because you are wearing it. Nice kit!

    1 reply

    Reply 6 years ago on Step 10

    I have a paracord bracelet already. I just don't want the hassle of having to unbraid it every time I need some cordage.


    6 years ago on Step 2

    you should also put in a small bic lighter as a back up fire method, if you for some reason can't use the flint, or if you need immediate fire and don't have time for flint.

    1 reply

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Hopefully, by now someone has helped you find the tape you seek. It is often called flagging tape or hunter's call it trail marking tape. It is available at hardware stores, Walmart and home improvement stores. It comes in rolls of 50 feet, 100 feet and even longer. It is very thin, non adhesive and usually found in various colors such as orange, yellow, red or even purple and green.
    Crayon and charcoal both tend to wear off too easily to be practical.
    Good question, though.


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    A good substitute could be a piece of bright red yard. Not as wide, but still should stand out if put in a conspicuous place, and can double use as cordage. Triple use-tie a 2" piece to your fish hook and fray it, and you have an instant lure when not much bait around. (I read that frogs will bite at bright red too)

    jodend'hal ibarra

    7 years ago on Step 9

    Most of the illegals we run into are so poorly prepared for their trip that they end up needing medical attention, they have almost nothing in the way of hiking or survival gear. But trash bags are a staple supply. cheap, lightweight, I've taken to carrying several in my bag. Thankfully, one of their main uses is to pick up their garbage and carry as they go, so the desert is not as littered as it was. You will find large bags stuffed full of garbage and weighted down or tucked in rocks. This is to keep from being followed. Worst case scenario, if you are in need of a bug our back for apocalypse, consider always collecting your garbage and bagging it so it is more difficult to be followed. I carry them because we often find things that need to be pulled out of the area and turned over to Federal or County law enforcement, and it becomes an instant disposible backpack to the work truck. I've also used my spare bags when I have found large caches of loose garabge, so I could pick it up and haul it out.