Home checklist summary:


  • Water: 15 gallons per person.
  • Food: non-perishable, long shelf life, easy to make or ready to eat.
  • Fire: lightersmatches, and a backup fire starter.
  • Light: candles, crank or battery powered flashlights or lanterns.
  • Heat: mostly from clothes and blankets, but also propane heaters and survival blankets.
  • First aid & medication: see what medical experts keep in their home medical supplies and individual first aid kits.
  • Hygiene: hand sanitizer, camp soap, baby wipes.
  • Communication: crank or solar powered NOAA radio, flares, whistle.
  • Cash: small bills, as much as you can afford to stash.
  • Documents: copy of deeds/titles, insurance policies, birth certificates, maps, etc.
  • Tools: axe, work gloves, wrench for your gas lines, zip ties, duct tape, sewing kit, etc.
  • Self defense: depending on personal views, up to and including firearms and ammo.


Bug Out Bags for every adult

A Bug Out Bag (BOB) is basically a backpack that is always packed and ready to go at a moment’s notice. It contains a wide range of the basics you need to survive for at least a few days and ideally much longer.

Example scenarios:

  • You’re ordered to evacuate because of a storm.
  • You wake up to a raging wildfire near your home.
  • Your neighbor’s house is on fire and you run over to help.
  • An aggressor is coming to your home and you need to leave quickly.
  • Law and order is breaking down and you’re better off leaving the area.
  • A missile strike or terrorist attack happens nearby and you need to leave town.

Key points to keep in mind:

  • You don’t know what will happen.
  • You can’t cover every potential need.
  • Weight matters — a lot.
  • You might be on foot for a long time.
  • You might be in an evacuation or refugee center, out in nature, or squatting in buildings.
  • It might be summer or winter.
  • The weather might be insane.
  • You might be alone or with other people.
  • People around you will be panicked and possibly dangerous.
  • You might be or get injured.
  • You might be on your own for a few hours, a few days, a few weeks, or longer.


Bug Out Bag checklist summary:

  1. Backpack: the right pack matters, not too big, not too flashy, good hip support.
  2. Water: tools to make or store water, not lots of water itself.
  3. Food: many people carry too much of the wrong kind of food.
  4. Fire: matches, fire starters, and a lighter.
  5. Heat: survival blankets and an insulated outer layer.
  6. Shelter: tarp, possibly an ultralight hammock or tent.
  7. Light: headlamp, battery- and crank-powered flashlight, candle.
  8. Communication: portable Ham radio, signal mirror, whistle, flares.
  9. Medical: see the portable medical kit checklist.
  10. Hygiene: camp soap, camp toilet paper, wipes, hand sanitizer.
  11. Navigation: laminated maps, compass, binoculars.
  12. Tools: field knifemulti-tool, cordage, zip ties, duct tape, safety pins.
  13. Self defense: gun, ammo, knives, nonlethals, depending on personal choice.
  14. Field guide: compact book with guides on various survival techniques.
  15. Documents: any important stuff like copies of birth certificate, medical records.
  16. Clothing: hat, sunglasses, socks, maybe a full set of climate-appropriate clothes.
  17. Misc: cash, small paper pad and pen, maybe a psychological comfort item.