If you have ever seen on the news immigrants fleeing worn torn countries like Syria mostly all of them have backpacks on along with numerous other bags. These people were forced to leave everything that they had left and pack only the essentials in their bag to survive and reach a safe destination. These bags that they were using were bug out bags.
Now it’s not something that most of them were probably prepared for. I don’t know if they are like Americans where the phrase “bug out bag” has really been popularized. These bags may have just been something that they had laying around.
Luckily for those who are in the preparedness community we have really been fortunate with information about these types of situations. We have time to prepare beforehand for such disasters. Knowing that we should be looking for not only a high quality bag but also one that fits our needs.
One bag that someone else may have bought may not fit your needs or what you are looking for. We each have our own criteria of what we think would be a good bug out bag. However, I believe there are the essential criteria that we should all take into consideration before purchasing a bag for bug out purposes.
Before finding the Condor 3 Day Assault Pack I had done a lot of research on these bags. A lot of them may appear the same from a distance but it is the small minor details that makes all the difference. So here are the essential criteria we should take into consideration before purchasing a bag:
7 Important Things to have in a Bug Out Bag
- Snug fit
If you are ever forced to bug out you will be moving a lot. If it’s an escape and evasion situation you won’t have many opportunities to stop and adjust your bag on fly. The bag should move with your body. Therefore the big should fit snug and close.
This is especially important if you have to do a lot of climbing. Just recently on my mock bug out we basically had to walk through a swamp in order to get to our location. So we were always trying to find the driest spot to walk on. Sometimes this required stepping from one dry patch to another. Luckily the Condor 3 Day Assault Pack stayed close to my body and didn’t throw me off balance.
If you are running you don’t want to have a bag constantly slapping or clapping against your back. You will want to have some support straps on your chest and around your waist. This will keep the pack tight to your body as you are running.
- Light weight
In the prepper community it is typical to hear someone say that your bug out bag should weigh no more than 25 pounds. This isn’t always easy to attain. This is especially you true when you are packing to survive for 72 hours. You have to really think hard before putting something in your bag because it may weigh you down. 25 pounds is a good rule of thumb but I say it depends on what you are comfortable with and able to move quickly in.
Packing to survive 72 hours will add a lot of weight to your pack. Therefore your pack should already be lightweight. Your bag itself minus your gear really shouldn’t weigh any more than 2.5 to 3 pounds.
If you are like me then you like to have a lot of pockets. It is important for you to be able to quickly find and access important gear that you may need while bugging out. For example, if you get cut really bad you will want to be able to know where your first aid kit is and quickly grab it without pulling everything out of your pack.
This is why the Condor 3 Day Assault Pack is really great. Not only are their many pockets on the inside along with a side pack on the outside but you also have Molle webbing. This is good if you wanted to attach something to the outside of the bag so that you can quickly access it. For example I like to strap a flash light and even my bush craft knife which I use quite often.
- Water Resistant
Most likely your bug out scenario is not going to be on a dry sunny day. You may have to bug out when it is raining or even snowing. If your pack is not water resistant then all of your gear and important documents may be ruined by the elements.
You will never really find anything that is 100% water proof but you can find something that is strongly water resistant. This is why I love Maxipedition and Condor products because a lot of their bags are made of 1000 Denier Nylon. When you pour water on these bags it just rolls off. It doesn’t penetrate the bag.
While bugging out you might encounter some tough terrain. There may be bristles and even sharp objects that you will be fighting. A generic backpack will easily rip in this condition.
Again you will want a pack that is made of 1000 Denier Nylon. It is some of the toughest material you will find. Also having ykk zippers on your pack helps a lot. These type of zippers self-lubricate with more use. That way you are not ripping off zippers when you are trying to force everything into your pack.
If you have ever gone hiking with a bag on you know how important it is to have a comfortable pack. You don’t want to have something that is weighing your back down. You will want a pack that takes the load off of your back and instead places the weight on your legs and feet. You also don’t want a pack that is rubbing your back or shoulders raw. This is why it is important to have a padded back and shoulder straps.
- Quickly access water
Again, when you are bugging out you don’t want to stop every 30 minutes to get situated. This is especially true when you are thirsty. You should be able to drink water while you are on the move.
Therefore your bug out bag should have a water bladder holder. You should also have holes at the bottom of your pack to drain water in case that it ever breaks. You don’t want your gear and essentials getting wet. You should also have a water bottle holder on the outside that you can reach back to grab without taking the bag off.
Altogether these are my 7 suggestions on what you should look for in a bug out bag. I previously wrote a review for the Condor 3 Day Assault Pack which is what I currently use. So far it has been very impressive. If this ever changes I will have to update this post but so far I haven’t found any other bag to possibly replace this with.
Please leave a comment below if you have any additional suggestions. Your feedback helps the prepper community. Let us know what pack you are using and why you love it. Also feel free to let me know if you have any questions about the Condor 3 Day Assault Pack.