The Bug Out Bag Back-up Kit

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bug out bag backup kitTo some degree, having a backup kit for your Bug Out Bag (BOB) might sound like overkill but bear with me a bit and allow me to explain. Every prudent prepper knows that it is important to have backups of essential gear. However, most of that gear, both primary and backups, ends up in the almighty BUG OUT BAG, the crown jewel in any prepper’s disaster plan. Seriously, to hear some people talk about bug out bags, you’d think their BOB sits on a velvet pillow with sunlight streaming down on it from a conveniently placed skylight.

The reality is that the bug out bag could end up not being an option. It could be lost or perhaps taken from you. Seriously, if you cannot possibly imagine a scenario where your bug out bag isn’t available to you, you lack any degree of imagination.

Why a Bug Out Bag Backup Kit?

The idea behind a BOB Backup Kit is to have a small collection of only the most essential gear stored in a belt pouch or other small, easy to carry, container. I like the belt pouch because it isn’t something I’m going to set down somewhere and possibly forget about. Others, though, might prefer a small satchel type bag. It should be something that will not interfere with carrying your full BOB, though.

For the pouch, many people like the Maxpedition M-2. It certainly works very well, but it is kind of pricey. For those on a tighter budget, maybe look at the Condor version, which also works quite well. Obviously, a pouch like this is going to be fairly small so we’re not going to be carrying a ton of gear in it.

Here are some suggestions for the absolute essentials:

A small folding knife
A small multi-tool
A couple of butane lighters
Strike anywhere matches stored in an old pill bottle
Ferro rod and striker
Small compass
Adhesive bandages
Pain reliever tablets
Signal whistle
Emergency blanket
Cordage wrapped on an old credit card
Water purification tablets

Obviously, a small pouch kit like this isn’t going to meet all of your needs for days on end. However, it should keep you alive long enough for you to work on bettering your situation. The idea isn’t to fully replace your BOB but to give you options in case your BOB becomes unavailable to you.

I store my belt pouch kit next to my BOB in my trunk. When the BOB comes out, I put the pouch on my belt immediately. From that point on, the pouch is attached to me until I’ve reached a safe location. Could be I’ll never truly need it but I’d rather have it and not need it than need it and not have it.

bug out bag backup kit

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Jim Cobb is a disaster preparedness consultant and author. His books include Prepper's Home Defense, The Prepper's Complete Book of Disaster Readiness, and Prepper's Long-Term Survival Guide.

3 thoughts on “The Bug Out Bag Back-up Kit”

  1. I fully agree with your points made in this article. Your bag may get lost, taken or you may not be anywhere near it. However some people like to say they have their get home bag to do them and they’ll walk the 40 miles to get home. A plan much harder than it sounds, even if they are lucky enough to be able to get at their GHB, which I hope they would be able to do. I have my BOB, and a small back up (like what you describe, that I have mollied to it which I take off immediately and put on my belt. Then I have a car and truck survival and tool kits for necessary and things I can’t carry in my regular kits (just in case), as well as a fortified GHB in both of the vehicles, which both have a tool belt type pouch that affixes to my belt “in case, then as a last resort, I wear a Canadian Military LBE waist kit with the suspenders and assorted pouches that I wear under my 3/4 length goretex jacket, and one last dying chance I have my EDC. So hopefully I have access to one or even some of my gear, or my wife and son would have access to my gear or their own,and we’d hopefully be able to meet up according to plan. But as we know of best laid plans…they go to waste, but we have tried to keep all bases covered, even including a basic bag at my brothers place and my parents house. My wife says Im nuts but whenever I help her pack when she goes away with the girls, they are always amazed that somehow Sonya has it or something that will work, and my buddies when we go camping or go away, its always, ‘Go ask Joe Ill bet he has one” So I try to be prepared always Just In Case. Thanks for your great article.

  2. everyone struggles with cordage. i like to use DENTAL FLOSS… 400 YARDS in a small package… use unscented… it VERY STRONG… don’t try to break it by hand without gloves. suitable for trotlines , sutures, etc.etc.
    1200 FT is a LOT… fits in a altoid kit.

  3. Pingback: SURVIVALISTS BLOG | The Bug Out Bag Back-up Kit – Survival Mom

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