by Mountain House May 04, 2017

Bug Out Bag Basics: Tips from Mountain House Ambassadors

Ah, the perennial prepper’s quandary: what to put in a bug out bag. Well, thanks to our Mountain House Ambassadors, we’ve got some genuine, real-life examples to inspire your own disaster preparedness!

First things first, though: What is a bug out bag? It’s essentially a version of the 72-hour kit, an arsenal of survival tools and provisions that will see you through at least three days of an emergency situation. “Bug out” references the bag’s specific purpose of supporting your basic needs as you navigate to a safe longer-term location to ride out a disaster scenario of some kind. (You’ll also see these bags under other names of the same spirit, including “go bag” and “Get-Out-of-Dodge (GOOD) bag.”)

A bug out bag checklist includes the basic staples of the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s recommended72-hour disaster supplies kit, including a three-day-plus supply of food and water, a first-aid kit, a flashlight (and backup batteries), a hand-crank or battery-powered radio, and signaling devices such as a whistle.

Many preppers also include components of wilderness survival in their bug out bags, given their bug out location may well be somewhere in the boondocks. Extra clothing, raingear, an all-purpose knife, fishing line, fire-starting materials, and pertinent up-to-date maps are examples of other goods commonly contained in a bug out bag. A lot naturally depends on the environment you'll be navigating through to reach your bug out refuge, whatever and wherever it may be. (Ourblogpost on becoming an urban prepper includes more info on these kinds of survival bags and kits.)

Want to get a sense of what some knowledgeable preppers consider bug out essentials? Well, we recently asked our Mountain House Brand Ambassadors whattheir bug out bag contents looked like, and received some illuminating responses via Instagram. We thought we’d share them with the broader Mountain House community so you all can start making a bug out bag list, or maybe fine-tune the go bag contents you’ve already begun assembling.

Kenny Dietrich/Ugly Tent

From a gas mask to a OneTigris solar charger, Kenny D’s bug out bag covers some admirable territory.

Kristi Wheeler

Survival knife, mess kit, toothbrushes, lighters—oh, and don’t forget some Mountain House meals!

Jonathan Revelle

Jonathan’s bug out bag essentials include a folding saw, water filter, passport, local maps, and a deck of cards for good measure.

Renaud Family

The “Adventurous Family” makes sure everybody has his or her own survival kit complete with a solar charger, matches, backpacking stove, flashlights, and other survival must-haves.

Certain pieces of hiking gear are essential for family hiking safety. In NH, where the weather can go from sunny to snowing in a matter of minutes, having the right stuff in your pack is vital. We ensure as a family that we are all equipped with our own version of a survival kit “just in case”. Focusing on shelter, fire, water and food we want to make sure we are ready for any emergency situation, and our friends @mtnhouse help us with that by providing delicious freeze dried meals for any survivalists preparedness kit (or in our case they provide the majority of our camping/hiking meals because not only are they convenient, but if we’re being honest they are also delicious!). This is just some of the gear we bring. We couldn’t capture our emergency tent, pads, extra clothing and layers, snacks, and Nick’s stuffed hiking companions of the day in the pic, but we hope it helps guide you in starting your adventures. And remember, it's important to carry the right gear to make sure you're prepared, but don't forget to have fun!! . . . . . . . . . #theadventurousfamily #nh #getoutsidenh #newhampshire #gonh #visitnh #visitnewhampshire #scenesofnh #hikenh #igersnh #scenesofnewengland #hikethewhites #nh48 #whitemountains #naturalnewhampshire #MHBUGOUTBAG, #MHAMBSDR #hiking#getoutside #exploremore #igers #getoutdoors #choosemountains #optoutside #outdooradventurephotos #neverstopexploring #tnflocals #hikingculture #nhgram #BUGOUTBAG

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Steven Mullinax

Among Steven’s well-equipped bug out bag are tools for rustling up grub in the backcountry, including a slingshot, snare wire, and fishing gear.

Andrew Sporrer

Andrew’s bug out bag stores multiple water-treatment technologies, stove and fuel, a sleeping pad, and personal-hygiene essentials.

Brian Dickinson

From a high-quality headlamp to high-quality cordage, Brian’s go bag contents certainly look up to the demands of a SHTF scenario.

Mike Holmquist

Leatherman, knife sharpener, sleeping bag, camo garb: Mike’s bug out bag doesn’t play around.

Here’s a big thank-you to all our Mountain House Brand Ambassadors who shared the contents of their bug out bags with us. And if you have any suggestions for bug out bag essentials, feel free to include them in the comments section! Key to survival and disaster preparedness is an unflagging willingness to learn, and everybody has something to offer to the conversation. Happy prepping!

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