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Why You Should Have a Bug Out Bag

why you should have a bug out bag


If you have been in the prepper community for a while then you probably have realized that we love our bags.  No, not those bags silly.  I’m talking about emergency survival bags such as bug out bags, go bags, get home bags and EDC bags.  In this post I am going to explain why you should have a bug out bag.

Many times people become a prepper and their first step is to buy a bug out bag without realizing the importance.  Sometimes preppers place more importance on this piece of gear than other more important items like food and water supply.  The bug out bag is a helpful piece of gear to have but it should be prioritized according to the threats that you face.  In order to properly prioritize building a bug out bag you need to understand why you should have a bug out bag.

Why You Should Have a Bug Out Bag

  1. You are no longer able to hunker down at your current location

If you have followed Smart Prepper Gear for awhile then you know that I constantly preach that bugging out should never be Plan A.  Bugging out is actually putting your life at more risk than bugging in.  In a previous post I talked about how to determine if and when you should bug out which will help you in your decision making before SHTF.

Ultimately we should be strategically prepping to be bug out proof.  However a lot of us are not in that position to be bug out proof.  Unfortunately a lot of us would be forced to bug out when SHTF or in a collapse scenario.

When SHTF and you are unable to hunker down then you will need to leave quickly.  For example, in the Winter War many were forced to leave immediately without warning because the Russians were invading their land.  They had 15 minutes to leave before the army began burning their houses down.  So there may come a time that you will have to leave quickly and bug out without much advanced warning.

  1. Predetermined emergencies essentials ready at any time

So in the case that you would have to bug out you won’t have time to sit down and determine what you should bring along with you.  By having a bug out bag already pre-made with emergency essentials you will be able to quickly grab it and go.  So it is important to not only have a bug out bag but you will want to make sure that you have it packed and ready to go at all times.

  1. Carries necessities to make it to bug out location

When you are bugging out you shouldn’t plan to just go into the middle of nowhere to survive on the contents of your bag alone.  The bug out bag should be built to last you 72 hours until you are able to reach your bug out location where your long term storage is located.  This is where you should plan to survive when SHTF.

  1. Carry essential survival items

Now you should only pack the essential survival items to make it to your bug out location.  It shouldn’t be packed with crazy shit like toys and electronics or other items that take up space without serving a purpose.  In a previous post I talked about how to build a bug out bag where I show you how to properly pack a bug out bag and cover some of the items included in mine.

The bug out bag should be built upon the Rule of 3’s foundation.  The Rule of 3’s state that you can only survive 3 minutes without air, 3 hours in rough weather conditions, 3 days without water and 3 weeks without food.  So your bugout gear should serve that purpose of carrying essential items to survive.  Now I’m not saying that you should have 3 days’ worth of food packed in the bag because the bug out bag is only designed for up to 72 hours.  But you should definitely keep enough items to survive and keep you energized.

  1. Protect important/sensitive items

Protecting your personal and important items is another reason why you should have a bug out bag.  More importantly you should have a bag that can protect important items like birth certificates and identification.  If it is ruined by water or any other factor when SHTF you won’t have the opportunity recover it.

The Condor 3 Day Assault Pack is a great pack that is able to serve all of those purposes as a bug out bag.  There are pockets to protect important paper items in the administrative pouch.  It also provides enough room to pack your survival items that will help you reach your bug out location.

Altogether these would be my suggestions on why you should have a bug out bag.  Please leave a comment below if you have any additional suggestions.  Your feedback helps the community prepare the smart way now so that we can thrive later.



why you should have a bug out bag

  • Bolofia

    I think it’s important to note that the distinction between a Get Home Bag and a Bug Out Bag is largely semantical. If, for example, you happen to work 30 or more miles from home, your ‘Get Home’ bag may need the same articles that you would stock in a BOB. If, on the other hand, you are evacuating a work location with the intention of meeting up with your family at a distant location other than your home, (such as a Bug Out Location), the bag and its contents now qualify as a ‘Bug Out’ bag. Same bag, same contents, different objective.

    In those two examples, the only substantive difference between the two bags is in their location. A ‘Get Home’ bag is something that you have with you when you are away from home; such as in the trunk of your car or a storage locker at work. Otherwise, a dedicated, mission specific, 72 hour Bug Out Bag is something that you keep at home; hopefully, one for each member of your family.

    Depending on circumstances, location and local conditions, a fanny pack might suffice for getting home from a work location. In my circumstances, where I am routinely 75 miles from home, there is no difference between the needs and contents of my Bug Out Bag (which is at home) and my Get Home Bag (which is in my truck).

    • Great insight. However, the bug out bag would be used for when you plan to never return home. I would recommend keeping one in your vehicle and at your home. The get home bag is meant to get you home where your supplies if it is not a bug out type situation or if you plan to bug in.

      I do agree that some elements of the bug out bag can be included in the get home bag depending on how far your home is from your current location. However, that doesn’t mean you will be walking to whole back. It is meant to get you home either by walking or finding another means of transportation.

      Good stuff bud!

      • Bolofia

        A fair amount of material has been written about INCH (I’m Never Coming Home) bags, with the implication that the contents must serve you for far longer than 72 hours. Obviously, all bags have limitations (as well as anyone that has to heft the weight). I still see a big difference in purpose and contents between INCH and BOB bags. It’s just my view, but an INCH bag is more oriented to survivalist gear that provide a means for longer survival under a wider range of conditions than I would encounter during a three or four day period. For example, I’m not going to be trapping wild game with gear in a BOB. Instead, I will have sufficient survival rations that enable me to maintain energy for up to a week, if necessary. If I’m hauling an INCH bag, it will most certainly have the necessary materials for snares, etc. In all cases, my assumption nd planning is that I will eventually end up on foot and remain on foot for the duration. Anything less than that is good news for my feet.

        • I agree. You cannot survive forever with just what you have in your bag. The bug out bag is just meant to last you up to 72 hours until you are able to make it to your bug out location. This is where your survival gear and supplies should already be stored up before arriving.

          The term “bug out” comes from the military when they were forced to retreat from a location with no intention on returning. They were falling back to their “bug out location.”